Syrian in Last 24 Hours: Syrian, Russian Armies Launch Heaviest Attacks on Terrorists in Hama, Idlib

Fri Mar 15, 2019

Syrian in Last 24 Hours: Syrian, Russian Armies Launch Heaviest Attacks on Terrorists in Hama, Idlib

TEHRAN (FNA)– The Russian and Syrian air force units heavily pounded the militants’ positions in Northern Hama and Southern Idlib in response to the offensives of Tahrir al-Sham al-Hay’at (the Levant Liberation Board or the Al-Nusra Front) in the demilitarized zone.

“The Russian and Syrian fighter jets launched airstrikes against the terrorists’ hideouts in al-Tamane’ah, al-Nayrab, Saraqib, Kafr Amim and Ma’arat Hormat in Southern and Eastern Idlib as well as their positions in Northern and Northwestern Hama,” the Arabic-language al-Watan newspaper reported on Thursday.

Meantime, the Syrian army continued its military advances in other parts of Syria over the past 24 hours.

Tens of terrorists were killed and dozens more were injured during the Syrian army’s operations in several provinces across Syria.

Hama-Idlib

The Syrian and Russian air force units heavily pounded the militants’ positions in Northern Hama and Southern Idlib in response to the offensives of Tahrir al-Sham al-Hay’at in the demilitarized zone.

The Arabic-language al-Watan newspaper reported on Thursday that the Russian and Syrian fighter jets launched airstrikes against the terrorists’ hideouts in al-Tamane’ah, al-Nayrab, Saraqib, Kafr Amim and Ma’arat Hormat in Southern and Eastern Idlib as well as their positions in Northern and Northwestern Hama.

Field sources described the Wednesday attacks as the heaviest airstrikes by the Russian and Syrian air force units since September, saying that a large number of terrorists were killed and wounded in the offensive.

Concurrent with the airstrikes, the Syrian army forces warded off the terrorists’ attacks from Kafr Naboudeh, al-Sakhar and Murak against the military points.

They also targeted the militants’ moves from the towns of Ma’arat, Hormat al-Khowin, al-Zarzour and al-Tamane’ah towards the military points in Southeastern Idlib with heavy missile attacks, leaving heavy damage on them.

The Syrian army units in response to the terrorists’ attacks on safe regions in Aleppo and Lattakia, launched strikes against their positions in al-Khalsah, al-Hamirah in Southern Aleppo and regions near Jisr al-Shaqour and Lattakia mountains.

The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement that the Russian Aerospace Force has destroyed a weapons depot belonging to the Tahrir al-Sham al-Hay’at terror group in the Syrian province of Idlib.

A pinpoint airstrike was carried out on Wednesday in coordination with Turkey.

The air raid “targeted a weapons depot belonging to the Tahrir al-Sham al-Hay’at terror group in the city of Idlib,” the defense ministry added.

“According to information confirmed through several channels, militants earlier brought a large number of combat unmanned aerial vehicles to the facility, which they planned to use for attacks on Russia’s Hmeimim air base,” the statement read.

Dara’a

The Syrian army found a large number of weapons and military equipment, including Israeli-made arms, during purging operations in regions liberated from the terrorists in the Northern parts of Dara’a province.

The engineering units of the Syrian army discovered the military equipment and ammunitions in the towns of Ankhal and al-Hareh in Northern Dara’a on Thursday.

A military source said that the Syrian army found different types of assault rifles, machine-guns, RPGs, cannons, anti-tank missiles, grenades, night-vision systems and different types of communication systems, adding that a number of them were made in Israel.

Raqqa

Several Kurdish militants were killed in the popular forces’ attacks on a convoy of the US and Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in Raqqa.

The Arabic-language website of Sputnik reported on Wednesday that the popular forces in Raqqa detonated a bomb on the way of a joint convoy of the US and SDF forces in al-Haramiyeh district in Raqqa city.

It added that the blast occurred as the US forces and the intelligence units of the SDF have planted over 600 cameras in the streets and districts of Raqqa.

Meantime, the Arabic-language al-Baladi website reported that during the attack, 3 Kurdish forces were killed and 8 others were wounded, adding that the SDF has put its forces on alert.

Popular protests against the deployment of occupying American forces and the US-backed SDF in Raqqa have increased recently.

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Russian Aerospace Force Destroys Terrorist Weapons Depot in Syria’s Idlib

ST

MOSCOW- The Russian Aerospace Force has destroyed a weapons depot belonging to the so-called Hayat Tahrir al-Sham terror group (also known as Jabhat al-Nusra  in the Syrian province of Idlib, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday, according to Itar Tass.

A pinpoint airstrike was carried out on March 13 by the Russian Aerospace Force. The airstrike “targeted a weapons depot belonging to the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (Jabhat al-Nusra) terror group in the city of Idlib,” the ministry said.

“According to information confirmed through several channels, militants earlier brought a large number of combat unmanned aerial vehicles to the facility, which they planned to use for attacks on Russia’s Hmeimim air base,” the statement adds.

A thing to note is that Russia’s military facilities in Syria have on numerous occasions been attacked with unmanned aerial vehicles.

Tass said that on January 6, 2018, militants carried out a large-scale drone strike on the Hmeimim air base and a naval facility in Tartus. The Russian military either destroyed or took control of the UAVs used in the attack. A Defense Ministry source noted at the time that “the programming of systems to control unmanned aerial vehicles and drop GPS-guided munitions requires completing engineering studies in a developed country.”

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin said, in turn, that the drones involved in the January 2018 attack on the Hmeimim base were run from a US Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft. When the drones were confronted by Russian jamming systems, they went to manual mode controlled from the US aircraft.

H.M

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Trump declares “victory” over ISIS but Washington’s foul plans in Syria are far from over

South Front

March 07, 2019

Trump declares “victory” over ISIS but Washington’s foul plans in Syria are far from over

by Aram Mirzaei for the Saker blog

At the eve of the 8 year anniversary of the Syrian war, the battle for one of the last ISIS strongholds in Syria is still raging. The so called “caliphate” is on its last knees as US president Trump declares that “100 percent of ISIS ‘caliphate’ has been taken back.

Trump was of course only referring to the US coalitions “efforts” and didn’t even bother to mention that it is Syria and her allies that have done most of the heavy lifting. Nevertheless, he was right about ISIS losing all of the territories they occupied in Syria, but what happens now?

The US has for long declared that their presence (occupation) in Syria is mainly to fight ISIS, while sometimes also claiming to “prevent Iran from entrenching itself” in Syria. Of course any serious observer who has the slightest interest in Middle Eastern politics understands that this is a lie.

The US’ top priority has been from the beginning to save its masters in Israel from their day of reckoning. In the long run this objective is and has always been linked to the much greater plan of destroying the Islamic Republic, the only true threat to Israel’s continued existence. For years Washington has deceived and fooled a vast majority of the world’s population and “analysts” into believing that its presence in Syria is tied to “fighting ISIS”, while hiding their intentions to overthrow the Syrian government and destroying the Resistance Axis. Now, Washington’s true objective will resurface for everyone to see.

This goal has not been linked to a specific US administration but has been a very longstanding policy for decades no matter who’s the president.

Despite Trump’s bogus declaration back in December that the US is pulling out of Syria, Washington recently backtracked and declared it won’t fully withdraw its troops from Syria but will leave “400 peacekeeping forces”, making these soldiers an official occupation force as the last ISIS stronghold is about to be destroyed. This new situation leaves the US and European allies without any cloak of legality since the pretext of “counterterrorism” is no longer plausible.

But this should not come as a surprise to anyone. Only a fool would believe that the US has spent so much time and money on training and arming Kurdish militias to grab as much land as possible east of the Euphrates, just to let the Syrian government take all the land back in a deal with the Kurdish militias.

The continued US occupation makes any kind of reconciliation between the Kurdish militias and Damascus impossible. Now that the ISIS terrorists are gone, the future of the Kurdish militias remain very much at the hands of Washington. Where will they be used next?

Turkey has for long threatened to invade north eastern Syria as Turkish president Erdogan vowed to create a “safe zone” along the Syrian-Turkish border after a phone call between him and Trump. At the same time Trump has threatened Turkey to refrain from attacking its Kurdish proxies in that region. This contradictory situation became even messier when Moscow declared that it will not accept such a “safe zone” without Damascus approval, a highly unlikely outcome as relations between Damascus and Ankara remain very hostile.

To the northwest, jihadist group Hayat Tahrir Al-Sham has outmanoeuvred and taken over most of the other “rebel groups’” positions and now remains the sole powerhouse in the Idlib province. Turkey’s inability or rather lack of interest to remove these terrorists has opened up the possibility for a new Syrian Army offensive on the region. If history is to repeat itself, we should expect Washington to threaten Damascus to refrain from launching this offensive.

Meanwhile, voices are being raised in neighbouring Iraq, demanding US forces stationed near the Syrian border to leave the country. Despite the unlikelihood of US troops withdrawing from Iraq, such a scenario would give Washington even more incentive to hold on to its foothold in Syria.

Washington has recently showed a great obsession with Iran and will do its utmost to destroy the Iranian-Syrian alliance and to isolate Iran, making the Islamic Republic an easy target for Washington’s next planned “humanitarian intervention”. This is manifested through Washington’s strategic occupation of eastern Syria and the Al-Tanf region, located right next to the Iraqi border and close to the Golan Heights. This was further proven after President Assad’s surprise visit to Iran where Iranian officials revealed that Washington had offered Assad to back his presidency in exchange for him breaking ties with Tehran.

Terrorist forces in Syria may be on the verge of defeat, but their sponsors in Washington remain as dangerous as ever. The last chapter of the Syrian war is yet to be written.

Prof. Tim Anderson to ST: Britain’s move against Hezbollah appeases US, assists Netanyahu and the Zionist lobby

ST

Monday, 04 March 2019

The Australian political economist and author Prof. Tim Anderson has asserted that  Britain’s proscription of the Lebanese Hezbollah as “terrorist” is first an attempt to fabricate some domestic support for the May government, second to appease Washington and third to assist both Netanyahu and the Zionist lobby in Britain.

He made it clear that Hezbollah expelled Israel from Lebanon, and helped restore some pride in the country, so too the Popular Mobilization Forces (Hashid al Shaabi), which saved Iraq from DAESH, have led the 2018-2019 agitation to expel US forces from Iraq, after 15 years of military occupation.

The professor’s remarks came during an interview with the Syria Times e-newspaper over the goal and effects of Britain’s recent move against Hezbollah besides the absence of western demand for fighting against the black-listed Al-Nusra Front terrorist in Syria’s Idlib.

Following is the full text of the interview:

ST-Why has Britain proscribed Hezbollah as a “terror” group, at this time??

Prof. Anderson: This move by the British government to proscribe Hezbollah as ‘terrorist’ does not come in response to any particular incident, nor any particular threat to Britain. Nevertheless, Britain’s traditional support for the zionist colony in Palestine has led it, from time to time, to adopt Israel’s enemies as its own. In the past Britain, recognising the influence of Hezbollah as a political party in Lebanon, had tried to distinguish between its ‘military’ and ‘political’ wings, and at times its ‘external wing’. Upgrading the aggression, by trying to brand the entire organisation as ‘terrorist’, at this time, must be seen in current political circumstances. The current British government, led by Theresa May, does not have a majority in the parliament and has been fighting for its survival by, amongst other things, trying to brand Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as ‘anti-semitic’ for his support of Palestine. The Israeli lobby in Britain has been central to this campaign. At the same time, President Trump has led a new wave of support for the apartheid state, backing the annexation of Jerusalem; and Zionist leader Benjamin Netanyahu is fighting for his own political survival, facing an Israeli election and a criminal indictment. It is most likely that the move against Hezbollah is first an attempt to fabricate some domestic support for the May government, second to appease Washington and third to assist both Netanyahu and the zionist lobby in Britain.

ST-What will be the effect of this step on Hezbollah and Lebanon taking into account that the EU refuses to brand Hezbollah as terror entity?

Prof. Anderson: The move is certainly a British slap in the face to Lebanon, as Hezbollah is more than ever a central part of the Lebanese government. Last year’s elections saw an expansion in support for Hezbollah (‘The Resistance’) mainly in Christian and Sunni Muslim communities. It already held overwhelming support in the Shi’a community. Britain’s move also supports the US economic ‘sanctions’ against Hezbollah, which threaten Lebanese banking. The position of the EU is slightly different, reflecting the somewhat more diverse positions within Europe on relations with the Arab and Muslim world. Nevertheless, the EU did upgrade its listing of Hezbollah’s ‘military wing’ in 2013, a move which Hezbollah officials described as “written with an American hand in Zionist ink” (https://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/23/world/middleeast/european-union-adds-hezbollah-wing-to-terror-list.html). Israel lobbyists have been trying to achieve a blanket ban on the Resistance group across all western countries. They have made some gains.

ST-Who will be affected by this recognition, and who will get benefit from it?

Prof. Anderson: Looking at the bigger picture, Britain has been following the USA in virtually all forms of aggression against the West Asian region; that includes the nine current wars against the peoples of Palestine, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Libya, Syria, Bahrain, Iran and Yemen. The economic ‘sanctions’ imposed by Washington, including economic blockades, affect almost all those same countries. Britain has been playing catch up. The aim has been to fragment and weaken the independent Arab and Muslim states, so as to more easily dominate the region and control access to its resources. Lebanon has not escaped this economic war, which will affect all parties. Hezbollah claims it is not much affected, but ordinary economic activities in the country will suffer through manipulation of and controls over finance and trade. The up side is that extreme pressures coming from Washington are driving the creation of alternative trade and finance mechanisms, the latest of which is the BRICS payments system (https://www.rt.com/business/452737-brics-own-payment-system/). There is a European version of this, in particular to maintain links with Iran, but it remains weak due to excess European commercial dependency on the USA (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/nov/06/european-clearing-house-to-bypass-us-sanctions-against-iran).

ST- Why do Britain and its master not call for fighting against the black-listed Al-Nusra Front terrorist in Idlib?

Prof. Anderson: The wars and economic siege measures, carried out by the imperial powers, are inextricably combined. Siege and propaganda weaken what terrorist proxy armies attack. Of course, the USA and Britain have armed and funded all the terrorist groups in the region, but they only openly do this for what they call the ‘moderate’ groups and affiliates like the al Qaeda public relations front the White Helmets

Britain and France funded a range of other terrorist affiliates, including the Ghouta Media Centre and the Aleppo Media Centre (https://21stcenturywire.com/2016/09/20/exclusive-aleppo-media-centre-funded-by-french-foreign-office-eu-and-us/), then used them to ‘verify’ their own propaganda (https://counter-hegemonic-studies.net/humanitarian-war-rp-1-18/).

More than four years ago senior US officials admitted that their ‘major Arab allies’ were funding and arming the internationally proscribed terrorist groups, al Nusra and ISIS/DAESH

So, in summary, the would-be imperial power in Washington and the former colonial powers Britain and France, from the beginning, have played a double game: condemning al Nusra and ISIS while covertly supporting them, to advance their strategic objective of destroying independent political will in the region. It follows that they will try to sustain ISIS/DAESH and/or the SDF, in eastern and northern Syria, and the al Nusra linked groups in Idlib, for as long as possible. It is only the resistance of Syria, Iran, Iraq and Hezbollah, with allies including Russia, that have been able to eliminate this terrorism.

ST-Would you like to add anything?

Prof. Anderson: It is important to recognize that, just as Hezbollah expelled Israel from Lebanon, and helped restore some pride in the country, so too the Popular Mobilization Forces (Hashid al Shaabi), which saved Iraq from DAESH, have led the 2018-2019 agitation to expel US forces from Iraq, after 15 years of military occupation.

For example, Sheikh Qais al-Khazali, leader of Asaib Ahl al-Haq (League of the Righteous) called for US military withdrawal in 2017 (https://www.presstv.com/Detail/2017/10/24/539730/Iraq-Hashd-alShaabi-US), and repeated that call in 2019. He said there was no longer any justification for the presence of US forces, asserting his belief that more than half the new National Assembly “reject the presence” of US troops. “If the United States wants to impose its presence by force, and to bypass the Iraqi constitution and parliament, Iraq can treat it the same way and drive it out by force… But the first phase is political,” al-Khazali said (https://apnews.com/109a9aabe987430cbe63e4a668711833).

The colonial states smear and sanction both Hezbollah and Hashid al Shaabi, with lies that they are ‘terrorists’ or extreme sectarians who do not care about their own people. Coming from the sponsors of al Qaeda, al Nusra and DAESH, that is hard to stomach. The sectarian accusation, from western and Zionist sources, has more to do with the frustration of ‘divide and rule’ strategies, as also their dismay in seeing a revival of political will amongst their opponents. Yet the region has seen an alliance of the downtrodden (mustadafin) which, with mature leadership, has built wider alliances.

It is worth mentioning that University of Sydney Provost Stephen Garton has chosen- as a pretext- one tiny, buried image in the background of info graphic, shown during advisory analysis made by professor Tim Anderson  about the Israeli attacks on Gaza, to suspend him from his position as a senior lecturer and to ban him from entering the university at which he has worked for more than 20 years.

At the beginning of this month, lawyers lodged an application in the Fair Work Commission, contesting the professor’s dismissal by the University of Sydney.

Interviewed by: Basma Qaddour

TURK BIGOTS CONTINUE TO SUPPLY TERRORISTS WHILE DEMANDING JUSTICE FOR UIGHERS IN CHINA; WAR OF ATTRITION IN NORTH HAMA; SAA FREES DOZENS OF HOSTAGES IN E. ALEPPO PROV.

Image result for recep tayyip erdogan

Turk psychopath, Recep Tayyip Erdoghan, has verbally attacked China for its aggressive policies towards that country’s Uigher population.  Turk Foreign Ministry spokesman, Hami Aksoy called China’s treatment of the Uighers:  “a great shame for humanity.”  Ankara also accused Beijing of killing the Uigher poet, Abdurrahim Heyit, while he was in state custody.  Words such as “genocide” have been bandied about in several Turk tirades over the treatment of ethnic Turks living in Xinjiang Province in the West of China.  Accusations, largely not denied by the Chinese, have included “concentration camps”, “indoctrination camps” and “forcible measures”.  The Chinese have responded to the charges with arguments going to “controlling terrorism” and tamping down militancy, the same issues with which Turkey has to deal in its never-ending propaganda war against the PKK.  And without saying so, the Chinese pointed indirectly at Turkey’s criminal support of terrorists in both Syria and Iraq.  Let’s not forget that ISIS descended upon Mosul from Turkey.

Your editor is always amused by open hypocrisy.  Erdoghan, who has promoted militant Islamism in Syria; given haven to some of the world’s most prolific decapitationists; armed and fed whole hoards of crypto-retardates from the Arab World’s cesspools of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE, is now pointing fingers at a country which is also, like Syria, locked in a battle to the death with radical, global Islamism.  I am laughing as I write this post.

Image result for Uighurs

The so-called poet, Heyit, was shown to be alive by Chinese state media 2 days ago, thus, kiboshing Turkish blowhard Erdoghan’s erroneous claim that he was dead.  The physical appearance of Uighers resembles those of Mongol tribesmen.

NORTH HAMA AND SOUTHERN IDLIB:

Al-Khuwayn Town:  On February 12, 2019, the SAA repelled another boring attempt to infiltrate its lines in Southeast Idlib as the terrorists of Nusra received a complete drubbing by drones, artillery and snipers.  According to Wael, the number of rodents confirmed killed was 3 with scores injured.

Al-Janaabira Town:  Also on February 12, the SAA confirmed the destruction of a row of fortifications after grubs from Kataa`ib Al-‘Izza attacked an SAA position with machine guns in South Hama Province.  The terrorists reportedly performed some peekaboo maneuver trying to persuade the Syrian troops into moving out of their defensive positions, but, to no avail.  We have no detailed information about rodent casualties although trucks used to carry the dead and wounded were spotted in the aftermath of the fighting.

Khaan Shaykhoon:  On February 15, 2019, the SAA annihilated 4 HQs of Nusra (HTS) along with a row of revetments along the eastern side of the Ghaab Valley, Syria’s Bekaa, near the towns of Al-Huwayzand Al-Huwayja.  Spotters reported 4 rodents killed with many wounded.

More fighting was reported in Waadi Al-Dawraat east of Al-Lataamina; at Al-Sukayk east of Khaan Shaykhoon; Al-Tuwayna where the SAA deployed Katyusha rockets to obliterate an entire nest of rodents belonging to the Al-Hizb Al-Turkistaani.

 تدمير مقرات للارهابيين في أطراف بلدة خان شيخون بريف إدلب الجنوبي

A T-72 fires its holy round at scurrying cockroaches belonging to Nusra at Khaan Shaykhoon.  (Photo courtesy of SANA)

It appears that Russia is still trying to get Erdoghan on board.  He won’t budge and won’t be seen attacking his fellow Islamist murderers.

________________________________________________

ALEPPO:

(Photo:  SANA)

Dayr Qaaq:  The young men in the photo saluted the Syrian Army’s special operations tactical group for their release from the grip of the noisome filth of Nusra.  They were hostages of Abu Muhammad Al-Jawlaani and his Turk enablers.  The operation took place near Al-Baab where these young men, who refused to serve in any terrorist group, were tortured and brainwashed for months.  According to Monzer, they all begged for the opportunity to exact revenge by enlisting in the Syrian Army.

How Syria Won The Revolution; The Jihadi Factor

 

February 06, 2019

By Ghassan and Intibah Kadi

How Syria Won The Revolution; The Jihadi Factor

The “War on Syria” has had many unintended twists and turns that were unforeseeable at the time it began. The plotters had no reason to believe they were going to lose, and the defenders had no option other than doing all they could and risk and sacrifice all that was dear and precious.

However, as frontlines are now being redrawn in Syria in preparation for the final showdown, a recapitulation of the events of the last eight years reveals that Syria did in fact end up having a revolution, but the group that embarked on the initial alleged revolution, the Free Syria Army (FSA) is nowhere to be seen.

This brings us back to the initial “Anti-Syrian Cocktail” that I wrote an article about back in early 2011; http://intibahwakeup.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-anti-syrian-cocktail-by-ghassan-kadi.html. The ring leader was Prince Bandar Bin Sultan, son of then Crown Prince Sultan, and the man who hoped he would be the first grandson of founding King Abdul-Aziz to become king. In two subsequent articles, “The Anti-Syrian Politics” (http://intibahwakeup.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-anti-syrian-politics-by-ghassan.html) and “The Anti Syrian Vendetta”, http://intibahwakeup.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-anti-syrian-vendetta-by-ghassan.html the articles focused on how Bandar tried to raise the largest army he could conjure, and with virtually bottomless funds, he put together a very loosely-united cocktail of groups who had nothing in common other than their hatred towards Syria.

In more ways than one, pre-King Faisal Saudi Arabia kept to itself. Founder, King Abdul-Aziz who died in 1953, had the doctrinal substance that would have exported Wahhabism to neighbouring Muslim countries, but his main concern was to bolster his domain over his new kingdom and give it a strong foundation that would secure its longevity. His successor son Saud was infamous for his orgies and debauchery. He capitalized on the spoils of the new-found wealth and did not have any agenda other than indulging in earthly pleasures. It wasn’t until he was deposed and replaced by his brother Faisal in 1964 that Saudi Arabia had a king who was a fundamentalist and also desirous of spreading Wahhabism to the outside Muslim World.

And when the “War on Syria” began, and long before the identity of the would be willing fighter was well defined, I predicted in the same above-mentioned articles that a widely diverse coalition of enemies of Syria were banding together, using Muslim fundamentalism as a recruitment drive, and as the fundamentalist factor became clear for all to see, it eventually transpired that Qatar became a new kid on the block in providing bigtime funding to a number of terror organizations operating in Syria.

They were all not only united by their hatred for Syria, but also specifically to the Assad legacy; particularly due the fact that the Assads are Alawites, and in their eyes, infidels. Their main objective was to topple President Assad and ensure that Syria was ruled by an anti-Iranian Sunni fundamentalist government.

Bandar had no qualms at all about uniting the ununitable. To Bandar however, it was not about a war of ideologies, and he was no strict Muslim. To Bandar, the “War on Syria” was about power and curbing Iran’s influence in the region. That said, he found in the already-existing numerous Jihadi armies excellent tools and pawns to use. In doing so, he did not foresee the many fault lines emerging in his fragmented army, let alone seeing any reason to worry about such cracks because, in the beginning he seemed to be going from strength to strength, with a seemingly huge chance of success. When he presented his plan to his American masters, he received the thumbs up.

Like all other early indigenous writers who supported Syria from day one of the onslaught, we all took the optimistic view and kept reiterating that victory was certain, but only a question of time. We were mindful of the importance of keeping spirits up and boosting morale, and being optimistic about turns in events and alliances that were to Syria’s advantage. In retrospect however, up until the Syrian Arab Army’s (SAA) first substantial win of the battle of Qusayr in mid 2013, more than two years into the war, the Jihadis, combined, were winning the war and closing in on key government positions right across the Syrian terrain; including the main cities.

So how did events turn around and how did the “War on Syria” turn against the plotters?

To be able to predict what was to happen was unthinkable in hindsight. It is only now that we can sit and make sense by harking back at the events of the last few years.

It would be virtually impossible to work out which came first, the chicken or the egg, but there is no doubt at all that the resilience of Syrian people and the SAA played the most significant role. But that role could have been reversed had the plotters been better able to play their game to their advantage.

Fortunately the plotters didn’t, but had they played down the role of Jihad and tried to capitalize on political reform, they would have perhaps been better able to achieve their insidious objectives.

Before the war, Syria was fraught with corruption and there were many reasons to call for reform. Agitators aside, was why the initial demonstrations in Daraa were conducted under this banner. It was under this guise also that the infamous FSA was formed as a splinter group of the regular SAA. Virtually all of the FSA officers and soldiers were SAA defectors.

For a while, a fair while, and long before ISIS and Al-Nusra came to prominence, the FSA was the major fighting force against the regular army (SAA).

During those initial months, it was very difficult to convince sympathizers of the so-called Syrian opposition that this was not a civil war, that it was not about reform, and that it was simply a conspiracy against Syria, planned and orchestrated by her regional and international adversaries, using and employing Islamist Jihadists and their supporting nations. The reason behind this difficulty was because those fundamentalist fighters were nowhere to be seen.

This was why many activists, including some prominent pro-Palestine Western activists, were adamant in their support of the “revolution” and genuinely believed that it was a popular revolt seeking reform and political plurality among other things.

In hindsight now, looking back at it all, had the mastermind plotters seen the benefit in the reform/freedom guise, had they had the wisdom and foresight in weighing out their benefits of overtly importing and arming fundamentalist fighters as against focusing their efforts on duping the public and generating real and genuine dissent amongst Syrians to their government, they might have succeeded in creating a revolution that served their agendas.

After all, it would have been conceivable for the plotters to promote misinformation and make it look plausible and endorsable. There is another chicken and egg scenario here. Did the plotters import Jihadi fighters because they weren’t able to mobilize enough Syrians against their government, or did Syrians support their government because the plotters brought in foreign Jihadi fighters?

Whichever one came first here, the chicken or the egg, neither one of them had to cross the road for the people of Syria to ask questions in order to see that what they were witnessing was not a revolution as touted by world media; especially the Western media and their Arab cohorts such as Al-Jazeera and Al-Arabiya.

Perhaps the plotters’ biggest failure was in being unable to hide their intentions and disguise in a manner that reflected to Syrians that there was indeed a popular and genuine reform-based revolution in their country for them to join.

 

In other words, by allowing the so-called civil war/revolution to show its brutal and ugly fundamentalist sectarian face, the plotters turned many Syrian sympathizers and many other would-be supporters against them. And this was how secular free-minded Syrians flocked together in support of their legitimate secular government; whether they believed that reform was necessary or otherwise. This was the reason why genuine supporters of reform and patriots who are in positions of political opposition to the government all banded together to fight the real enemy. This of course bolstered not only the government’s position, but also that of the SAA and this played a significant role in creating a much more resolute and united Syria.

The plotters also failed in being able to produce a charismatic figure head for the “revolution”. All the while secular Syrians looked up to President Assad and the First Lady; two figure heads charming in every way, and with the power to unite by leading by example.

Of significance also was the fact that the disunited “Anti-Syrian Cocktail” was bound to fragment sooner or later; not only on strategic and doctrinal lines, but also on matters of power sharing, loyalty, and splitting of spoils. To this effect, clashes between different fundamentalist organizations became daily events.

Later on, as the turn of events presented to the plotters and their henchmen that victory was impossible, especially after Russia entered the ground and sky, their infighting morphed into that of survival and hope for better positions on either reconciliation tables or on disengagement talks, or both. Those Jihadi versus Jihadi battles in latter times continued to rage culminating recently in a total takeover by Al-Nusra of all other terror groups in Idlib.

Whilst I have always reiterated in previous articles that there was hardly any difference at all between the numerous fundamentalist Islamic Jihadi organizations, the Wahhabi faction that is loyal to Saudi Arabia has lost abysmally to the Qatari/Turkish led Muslim Brotherhood (MB) faction which is now in full control of the last bastion left for terrorists west of the Euphrates, and specifically in Idlib and surrounds.

With this, Erdogan feels that he still has a finger in the pie before final negotiations commence about the future of the terrorist enclave. Whether those delay tactics work or not for Erdogan, whether they preclude the need for a military resolution is yet to be seen. Any such resolution however will give Erdogan a form of a consolation prize, a humble victory that he badly seeks in Syria after all of his initial gambles went terribly wrong.

At this juncture, we must pause and ask what became of the movement that allegedly represented the passion of Syrians for secular and democratic reform. Where is the FSA now?

If the news about Al-Nusra’s total control of the Idlib region is accurate, we must then assume that the FSA is no longer in existence, because prior to the recent upheaval between Al-Nusra and other brigades in the region, the presence of the FSA was restricted to this area.

Ironically, the FSA has had a late resurgence not too long ago before Al-Nusra wiped out all rival militia, but Erdogan seems to have pulled the plug on the FSA, but for some reason, there is nothing I can find in the news from the region, or anywhere for this matter, to confirm this conclusion or debunk it.

What is clear is that the FSA, the only dissenting player that had in the very early beginnings a miniscule semblance of secular Syrian dissent, perhaps the only player that could have potentially turned into a popular revolution, has been disempowered and dismantled by the same demonic forces that created it and funded it.

Either way, whether Erdogan has done the dirty on the FSA or not, the FSA lost its position and clout when its role was overtaken by the many Islamist terrorist organizations. It tried hard to maintain its presence even though many of its rank-and-file rejoined the SAA, whilst others changed uniform and joined Al-Nusra, but the short of it is that the FSA has become a spent force.

Syria had many problems before the war and continues to grapple with some of them. Wars of such devastating magnitude almost invariably leave behind not only a trail of mess and destruction, but also a countless number of corrupt officials and profiteers. Every dog has its day, and the cleanup will soon begin.

But the irony is that with the “War on Syria”, the lines have been drawn and Syrians now know well who is with them and who is against them, domestically, regionally and internationally. They know what alliances they need to nurture and which others to seek. They know what political system they want and which they totally refute. They have chosen and fought for a government they were told decades ago that it came to power by a popular revolution back in March 1963, and later on reformed by Hafez Assad’s “corrective movement” of November 1970, but the choice Syrians made from 2011 onwards was their own, and they upheld it with tears and blood.

Syria has gone the full circle against her enemies and against archaic and brutal dogmas. It seems that Syria has truly ended up having a revolution after all, a real revolution, and that real revolution has won. There is a great opportunity now to rebuild the nation, to rebuild it on wholesome, principled, virtuous and sound foundations.

HIGHLIGHTING THE PEACE DAMASCUS MISSED FOR YEARS WHEN UNDER TERRORISTS’ MORTARS

In Gaza

As I mentioned at the beginning of this clip, when in Syria as a journalist it usually takes 3 or so days to acquire the necessary permissions to go to areas outside Damascus (or rather, areas outside of Damascus where there is a risk due to presence of terrorists, terrorists bombings, or their landmines).

During this time, instead of loitering I try to interview average Syrian civilians, sometimes artisans, and otherwise love walking alone in the meandering back lanes, absorbing the atmosphere–whether daytime or evening.

People ask me about safety: I feel completely safe walking alone in these lanes. In contrast from my first visit in 2014 to the liberation of eastern Ghouta in 2018, I did not feel safe, nor did Syrian civilians, because at any moment a terrorist-fired mortar might strike, as they did incessantly over the years.

As I noted a few weeks ago when I was here, the mood on the streets is completely difference than in previous years. Yes, people remained steadfast and defiant in the face of the terrorism, but now streets are busier than before, late into the night. That doesn’t make a good “story”, so Western media are not, to my knowledge, reporting on this. Instead, I see new stories invented to yet again attempt to demonize Syria or Russia, instead of just allowing Syrians to get back to life. It’s for the hell Syrians have endured and the silence of the media on this hell that I continue to post positive updates while in Damascus.

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The story of AFAMIA started when we purchased the factory land plot in Adra Industrial Zone in Damascus in 2010.

Despite the challenges, in 2014 the reconstruction of the brewery had set off, and by 2016 the completion of the main civil and electro-mechanical works as well as the equipment installation marked the true start of the brewery.
We use our technical skills, experience and patience to hand craft all of the natural ingredients into a premium balanced lager: Our own premium lager Afamia Beer of Syria.

Just like the Afamia columns, proud, undefeated, witnessing cities destroyed and rebuilt, we stand high reaching to the sky, we show who we are.
Not just a name full of history but also a vision for the future.
We explore the meaning of being Syrian by stepping boldly and without compromise.
As we strive to move forward, we stand out.

In our land, the oldest beer recipe is found on a cuneiform tablet in the hymn of Ninkasi. Sumerian word for beer appears in many contexts relating to medicine and myth, and Mesopotamian workers were even paid in beer.
The oldest known depiction of beer-drinking can be found in a Sumerian tablet that dates back approximately 4,000 BC. It shows people sipping beer from the same vessel through reed straws.
Inspired by this ancient art and the evolution of cuneiform writings that lasted for hundreds of years and survived till this day, our icon is our north star, commemorating our heritage with with a look into the future.

We are a part of the tribe that moves with passion and vision.

Pride can never be taken or forgotten.
Passion drives us to reach for the impossible.
Perseverance paves us a sharp way to success.
Progression is turning change into an evolution.
Purpose keeps us motivated and focused.
This is the essence that makes us OF SYRIA.
The more we’re put to the test, the tougher we get. We’re forged with sharpness and endurance like Damascus steel.

We put effort and care in every step to only deliver the best

It takes 9 steps to turn our quality ingredients into a real premium lager.
From the raw ingredients to the bottle, every step is quality checked and assured.
We put effort and care into every single one of those steps, to deliver only the best

THE BREW

We introduce the first premium quality Syrian beer

With premium ingredients from Europe, Czech and German expertise, local engineers and production, we introduce the first premium quality Syrian beer.

With passion and dedication an idea in 2010 becomes a reality in 2017.
We OF SYRIA, believe in more.
Here we celebrate all different kinds of talents and show the world what it means to be OF SYRIA
Here we reclaim optimism.

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