متغيّرات الميدان السوري والسيناريوات المحتملة

يونيو 4, 2019

العميد د. أمين محمد حطيط

شهدت الأسابيع الثلاثة الماضية أحداثاً هامة في الميدان السوري بشكل عام وفي الشمال الغربي بشكل خاص، ترافقت مع تكثيف للتدخل العدواني «الإسرائيلي» جاء نتيجة المتغيّرات المختلفة التي نتجت، وهي متغيّرات لم يكن معسكر العدوان على سورية ينتظر شيئاً منها.

ونستطيع القول بأنّ ما سجل على الأرض فاجأ العدو بفروعه وصنوفه وأدواته منفذين ومشغلين وقيادة، ما دفعهم الى مراجعة ما وضعوه من خطط وما اعتمدوه من مناورات إشغال وإلهاء واستنزاف اعتمدت خدمة لاستراتيجية أميركا بإطالة أمد الصراع ولتمكين تركيا من السير الحثيث نحو تنفيذ مشروعها الخاص في سورية والذي باتت عناوينه واضحة وتقوم على أمرين أساسيّين: قضم أرض سورية جديدة لإلحاقها بالإسكندرون كما يحصل في عفرين وامتلاك السيطرة والنفوذ على جزء من الأرض والشعب السوري للإمساك بأوراق تمكن تركيا من التأثير في القرار السوري المركزي.

لكن سورية التي وعت جيداً أخطار تلك الخطط والمناورات التركية الأميركية الإرهابية، ردّت على استفزازات الإرهابيين واعتداءاتهم بعملية عسكرية سريعة ومحدودة أدّت الى استعادة كفرنبودة ومنطقتها مع توسع مدروس شرقاً وغرباً ما مكّنها وبمهل قصيرة وكلفة معقولة من تحقيق 3 أهداف رئيسية عملانية واستراتيجية فاجأت بها العدوان وقيادته وأدّت الى:

1 ـ تحرير قطاع واسع من الأرض واقع بين حماة وإدلب ما وضع الجيش السوري على مشارف سهل الغاب ومكّنه من تحضير المسرح والبيئة العملانية للانطلاق مستقبلاً الى تنفيذ عملية تحرير إدلب ومنطقتها كلها.

2 ـ توجيه ضربة قاسمة لخطة الإرهابيين ومشغليهم والمتمثلة بإدارة حرب استنزاف خطط لها من أجل ان ترهق الجيش السوري وتقود الى تآكل قدرته المادية والمعنوية وتشغله عن التركي الذي يتجه الى تنفيذ مشروعه الخاص بشكل متدرّج وآمن.

3 ـ توجيه ضربات موجعة للإرهابيين في قواعدهم ومراكزهم وقواعدهم النارية ما أدّى الى نوع من التضعضع في صفوفهم وخطوطهم الأمامية وتدني في معنوياتهم، حمل البعض منهم على مغادرة الميدان وفتح كوة في الحصار المضروب على المدنيين لمنعهم من الخروج من المنطقة.

هذه النتائج الباهرة دفعت بالتركي الى العودة مجدّداً الى روسيا عارضاً تنفيذ اتفاق سوتشي بعد التيويم والمراجعة التي فرضتها التطورات، تنفيذ يكون مسبوقاً كما يتردّد بنوع من تهدئة وتبريد الميدان، تهدئة وتبريد يروّج التركي لهما علي أساس أنها هدنة بين الدولة السورية والجماعات الإرهابية برعاية تركية روسية مشتركة. كما أنه يسرّب انّ هناك احتمالاً لاستقدام قوات أجنبية إضافية ونشرها في مناطق خفض التصعيد الى جانب القوات التركية بما يوحي بأنّ مسالة تحرير إدلب وإعادتها الى سورية باتت بعيدة جداً.

ويبدو أنّ التركي في ادّعاءاته تلك يريد ان يتجاوز إنجازات الجيش العربي السوري، وان يحتوي مفاعيلها بما يخدم مشروعه وهنا ينبغي الحذر والتنبّه من المحاولة التركية تلك او التفسير التركي للمسعى الروسي، فروسيا وافقت على تفعيل اتفاقات استانة وخاصة منها منظومة خفض التصعيد، ومنحت تركيا فرصة أخرى للتنفيذ، وسكتت سورية على هذا الامر رغم انعدام ثقتها بتركيا كلياً، سكوت أملته رغبة سورية في الوصول الى هدف التحرير دون ان تلزم بحرب وخسائر، لكن تركيا التي اعتادت مجانبة الحقيقة في سلوكها والانقلاب على الاتفاقات أرادت من ترويج فكرة الهدنة ان تلحق الأذى المعنوي والمادي بالحكومة السورية وتضعها على قدم المساواة مع الجماعات الإرهابية وتجعل نفسها حكماً بينهما وهو أمر يجافي الحقيقة ولا يتناسق مطلقاً مع السياسة السورية المعلنة والمنفذة في كلّ الأطر والوجوه.

اما على المقلب الآخر ومع الانتصارات التي تحققت في الشمال الغربي السوري وغيّرت من طبيعة المشهد الميداني كما أشرنا، مع هذه المتغيّرات استأنفت «إسرائيل» تدخلها ونفذت اعتداءات على منطقة دمشق وحمص، وكان واضحاً انّ «إسرائيل» شاءت من اعتداءاتها هذه تحقيق 4 أهداف:

ـ الأول تحقيق حاجة انتخابية شخصية لنتنياهو ليثبت انه الرجل القوي الممسك بالأمور الدفاعية وانه يتابع ما يجري في الشمال لحظة بلحظة ولأجل ذلك ادّعى، وهي من المرات النادرة التي يخرج فيها رئيس حكومة العدو، ويدّعي انه هو شخصياً أعطى الأمر بالغارات.

ـ الثاني إثبات استمرار وجود «إسرائيل» وفعاليتها في الميدان السوري وكسر الصورة التي رسمت بعد تحرير الجنوب السوري والتي مضمونها انّ اليد الإسرائيلية بترت ومنعت من التدخل في الميدان السوري.

ـ الثالث تحويل اهتمام الجيش العربي السوري وإشغاله عن معركة إدلب ودفعه الى تخصيص جزء من قواه لمواجهة العدوان الإسرائيلي في الجنوب.

ـ الرابع رفع معنويات الإرهابيين المتهالكة عبر توجيه رسالة لهم بانّ «إسرائيل» معهم وأنها لن تتخلى عنهم ولن تغادر الميدان وعليهم ان يصمدوا في مواجهة الجيش العربي السوري.

ـ ويمكن أيضاً إضافة هدف خامس هنا أيضاً يتصل برغبة «إسرائيل» في جسّ النبض حول ما إذا كانت منظومة «أس 300» التي نشرت حول دمشق قد فعّلت وعما إذا كان هناك قرار باستعمالها حتى الآن.

وبالمجمل نرى تكاملاً بين الدور التركي الإرهابي في الشمال الغربي ودور العدوان الإسرائيلي انطلاقاً من الجنوب الغربي، والإشراف الأميركي العام على الدورين، تكامل يهدف منه أصحابه الى منع تحرير إدلب وإدارة حرب استنزاف حولها، وتجويف اتفاقات استانة وسوتشي من محتواها، ما يضع الروسي والإيراني في حال إحراج في التعامل مع التركي. فكيف ستتصرف سورية على ضوء هذا المشهد؟

نعتقد بانّ سورية اعتمدت سياسة لتحرير أرضها وأرستها على مبادئ وعناصر ثلاثة أولها مبدأ التحرير الكامل للأرض مبدأ لا رجعة عنه، ثانيها اعتماد المرونة والليونة في المناورة والتنفيذ، وثالثها الحرص ما أمكن على أرواح المدنيين والعسكريين على السواء، ولذلك فسورية لن تفوّت فرصة تخدم سياستها تلك الا وتستغلها، ولأجل ذلك فإنها ستواجه او ستكون أمام احتمال مواجهة السناريوات الثلاثة التالية:

الأول: نجاح التهدئة وتبريد الميدان في الشمال الغربي وإقدام تركيا على تنفيذ ما التزمت في سوتشي واستانة وهنا تكون عودة الى المسار الذي اعتمد في استانة وهو التحرير على المراحل مع الضغط العسكري دون اللجوء الى المواجهة العميقة. وقد تدّعي تركيا انّ الهدنة التي طلبتها كانت في محلها ومكّنتها من تنفيذ موجباتها. هو السناريو الأضعف والأقلّ احتمالاً .

الثاني: فشل ما تسمّيه تركيا هدنة، وعودة الإرهابيين بدعم من مشغليهم في معسكر العدوان الى حرب الاستنزاف والقفز فوق خسائرهم التي نزلت بهم في الشهر الماضي، مع محاولات التوسع في المنطقة، واستفادة التركي من الوضع للتسريع في تنفيذ مشروعه الخاص.

الثالث: مبادرة الجيش العربي السوري على ضوء فشل التهدئة ونكول تركيا وتراجعها عن تعهّداتها، مبادرته الى إطلاق عملية عسكرية على مراحل متتالية من أجل تحرير إدلب وفقاً للسياسة المعتمدة لديها كما ذكرنا أعلاه ومن الأرجح ان تشهد الأسابيع المقبلة تنفيذاً لهذا السيناريو الذي نراه الأرجح والأكثر احتمالاً.

أستاذ جامعي ـ باحث استراتيجي

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Explaining Russia’s Position on Idlib

June 04, 2019

by Ollie Richardson for The Saker Blog

Explaining Russia’s Position on Idlib

Over the past five years my work in the information space has been consciously aimed at explaining why the Russian military does and doesn’t do certain things, whether it be in relation to Ukraine, Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Venezuela, etc, and why demanding that Putin bombs everything in sight is exactly what the CIA wants so-called “pro-Russians” to say. Yet I haven’t exhausted (maybe I never will exhaust it?) this topic because it is so vast and, ultimately, complex. And it is because of this seemingly insurmountable complexity that questions like “Why doesn’t Russia liberate all of Ukraine”“Why doesn’t Russia save Donetsk and Lugansk in the same way it saved Crimea?”“Why doesn’t Russia boot America out of Syria?”, etc are asked on social media.

But one statement that I haven’t really addressed (until now) is “Why doesn’t Russia liberate all of Idlib in one fell swoop?”. Many “geniuses” like to say that Putin is in bed with the “Ottoman butcher” Erdogan and has thus “betrayed Syria”, similar to how shaking hands with Netanyahu means that Putin is a Zionist and has “betrayed Syria”, or even that a visit of the Saudi King to Moscow means that Putin has the blood of Yemen on his hands.

So, those “pro-Russian” readers who fear that they may be one step ahead of the Kremlin and can see an iceberg on the horizon needn’t worry – another Putin-esque zugswang is in progress!

When Russia sent its aviation to Hmeymim airbase in Syria in 2015 the primary mission was simple: remove Turkey – the main belligerent – from the game. Ankara benefited from ISIS’ theft of Syrian oil and controlled many jihadist groups on the ground (Ahrar al-Sham being the main one). Then in November 2015 the CIA (via the PM at the time Ahmet Davutoğlu) decided to float a test balloon and see how Russia would react to a carefully designed scenario. A Turkish F-16 shot down a Russian Su-24. It didn’t matter if the Turkish jet was in Syrian airspace or not, as Moscow knew exactly what had happened, and all the other players knew that Moscow knew. The actual murder of one of the ejecting Russian pilots was carried out by a proxy (a Grey Wolf), and not by a Turkish soldier. But in any case, this test miserably failed, because Russia did not react in a way that would contravene international law (the immediate response happened hours after the shootdown – Russian “advisors” and Syrian troops went to Latakia with MLRS and wiped out the “terrorists who were responsible”, who just happened to be Turkmen). Since military operations generally take place within the framework of economic conflicts (securing assets), the manner in which Russia responded to Turkey in the format état-à-état was the equivalent of what the lunatic Zhirinovsky suggested to do, just without the war crimes.

The sanctions on Turkey (aimed at the CIA-Gulen bloc in reality) negated what Ankara was gaining from stealing Syrian oil, and so the Syrian theater became a zero-sum game for Erdogan. In May 2016 Davutoğlu was removed from the picture. Erdogan was forced to take part in the Astana Agreement and start the process of throwing his proxies in Syria under the bus (or onto green buses!) within the framework of what was given the reputation-saving name of “de-escalation zones”.

This was Moscow’s way of countering the game orchestrated by John Kerry, where a pocket in Eastern Syria would magically open (ISIS would go on an offensive) at a time when al-Nusra was on the ropes in Western Syria. This tactic hoped to tire out the Syrian Army and Russian “advisors” and maximise their casualties. Whilst never admitted in public by Moscow (naturally), “de-escalation zones” actually meant “we will liberate Aleppo and thus recapture all of the ‘useful’ (where most people live, in the West) part of Syria, after which the pace of the theater will have been slowed down enough to start work on eliminating the other players”.

After Aleppo was liberated (the Turkish-controlled groups magically withdrew), Russia continued, via the “de-escalation zones”, to whittle down the large list of terrorist groups into two categories: terrorists no longer supported by Turkey (loyal to al-Nusra leader Jolani) and tame terrorists still supported by Turkey. The former category would be shipped to Idlib via green buses, and the latter category would be used to keep the trecherous Kurds and the CIA-Mossad “Rojava” plan at bay.

In parallel to this, the Astana group managed to smash the Gulf bloc into fragments, liquidating their pet terrorist proxies in Syria and forcing them one by one to normalise relations with Assad, since the dollar is becoming a suitcase without a handle.

The question of the S-400 is more complex and isn’t just about defending Turkish skies. It symbolises more a commitment to play by the rules of the newly emerging world order (based on self-defence and international law) and to no longer indulge in the casino known as “Responsibility to Protect” (or in simpler terms – multipolarity vs unipolarity). Similarly, Turkish Stream is another example of Moscow thrusting a lance through the rotting corpse of NATO. In general, Turkey is geographically positioned almost in the center of the battle of superpowers. For Ankara, bearing in mind that the US tried to stage a coup there in 2016 and had a hand in the assasination of Andrey Karlov, the Russian ambassador to Turkey, it is more profitable to look East than it is to look West, and this was why Turkey wasn’t in a hurry to join the EU, since it saw the geopolitical storm brewing on the horizon and wasn’t prepared to kiss the ass of the IMF anymore.

So, returning back to the Syrian timeline, whilst al-Nusra was being herded into Idlib, and since Trump cut aid to US-backed terrorists, Turkey was able to monopolise the “Free Syrian Army” aesthetics (abandoned by the US) and occupy areas of Northern Syria whilst making it look like they are “Syrian rebels” and not Turkish proxies, all for the purpose of preventing the Kurds from travelling any more Westward than they already have. And here is where the array of interests becomes interesting:

  • Russia and Iran have basic diplomatic relations with the YPG/SDF (they are Syrian citizens after all) and want them to abandon the US/Tel Aviv/Riyadh;
  • The Syrian State wants the YPG/SDF to return to the bosom of the state and hand over the territories they occupy back to the Syrian Army;
  • Turkey wants the YPG/SDF removed from the picture/disbanded entirely, but has developed ties with Russia and Iran;
  • The YPG/SDF will not negotiate with Turkey unless it can hide behind America’s skirt;
  • Formally, Syria views Turkey as an aggressor, although behind the curtain Damascus has a pragmatic consensus with Moscow, which gave Turkey the green light to enter Syria in order to quell Rojava, and which is trying to stabilise the region and include all regional players in the Eurasian bloc;

Yes, it’s complicated. But here is a simple fact that helps the layperson to understand the situation: America has nuclear weapons. This is why Russia cannot stop the US from occupying Northeast Syria (which was plan B, plan A being a replica of Gaddafi’s removal, which failed after Russia cemented the Minsk Agreements in Ukraine). It can squash its proxies that are West of the Euphrates, yes, but it cannot touch US (non-proxy) assets, in the same way that Washington cannot touch Russian (non-proxy) assets. Or rather – they can directly touch each other’s assets, but any “victory” will be completely pyrrhic. From Russia’s perspective, the aim is to make friends with everyone, since the fewer enemies one has, the better.

While the core of the Turkish proxies is busy caging in (so-called “outposts”) al-Nusra militants in Idlib governorate, repelling the Kurds, and occasionally killing US soldiers, a kind of negotiation game between Turkey and Russia is ongoing:

  • Turkey needs a terroristified Idlib as leverage against all players but is happy to hand the governorate over to Assad piece by piece in exchange for pieces of the S-400/Turk Stream/general Eurasian bloc project;
  • Russia occasionally bombs Idlib in order to exercise its superior leverage over Turkey (the media presents this as “there were talks, but Russia continues to bomb Idlib”), the interim “ceasefire deals” are simply checkpoints in these grand negotiations;
  • Turkey turns a blind eye to al-Nusra’s oil operations (which feed their occupation of the governorate);
  • As an act of “hybrid war”, Russia and friends assist in the process of assassinating the commanders of al-Nusra in Idlib, since the less leverage Turkey has, the quicker the Idlib circus can end;
  • The West broadcasts propaganda about hospitals being bombed simply to cover up the fact that they have been arming and funding Al Qaeda for decades.

The “x-factor” in this conundrum is Trump’s “pull-out”. If US troops pull out of Northeast Syria completely, it would be in Russia’s interests if Turkey filled the void and proverbially herded the Kurds back towards Assad. For America, the sooner this war ends the quicker US troops can return home, but Trump won’t exit without getting something in return. However, there is a big problem – Zionism. Tel Aviv tries to keep America in Syria. Netanyahu didn’t spend all that time begging Uncle Sam to invade Iraq just for him to leave when the going got tough. Moreover, Iraq is already falling into the hands of Iran, and sooner or later the S-400 will be sat in Mesopotamia. Not to mention the fact that Russia is entrenching itself in Lebanon. Did I mention that Trump’s (purposeful?) decisions (and failed “deals of the century”) are strengthening the Palestinian resistance (example)? So what in all honesty does Israel hope to do?

Well, since everything that happened in the Middle East since 2001 (and arguably even earlier) is mainly in Israel’s interests, especially the Syrian war, it’s not a surprise that 8 years of full-scale local proxy warfare has reduced to… Israel taking aerial pot shots at a limited slice of Syrian territory. I have already explained why Russia doesn’t react to these airstrikes in the way that social media guerrillas would like, and all that has happened since is Netanyahu’s election victory. I would only add that bombing Syria became even riskier for Tel Aviv, since the SAA air defence units gain more experience with each new raid. Moscow managed to make a nice gesture to Israel, recovering from Syria the remains of an Israeli soldier missing since the 1982 war in Lebanon, but it wasn’t done for the purpose of stopping the airstrikes. It was simply a typical Russian diplomatic move based on the concept of “violence doesn’t beget violence”. Deflecting Israel’s airstrikes is the job of the Syrian air defences. The Israeli media presents this as “Russia has friendly relations with Israel and knows that Jerusalem considers Iran its leading existential threat, so does not block Israeli strikes at Iranian targets and those of its proxies, but on one condition: Stay out of Russia’s way and give ample warning so there won’t be a repeat of incidents like the one in which Syria shot down a Russian spy plane, possibly because of confusing signals by Israel”. However, in reality Russia wants Syria to become an independent adult, capable of defending itself without requiring Russia’s help, and it is only in this way that Syria will be able to successfully integrate itself into the Eurasian bloc. Of course, logically speaking, if Israel just left Syria alone and minded its own business, then Iranian forces wouldn’t even be in Syria. But I think that most know by now that Israel wanted (and maybe still wants) to carve Syria into 3 pieces along sectarian lines.

Another layer of the Israel problem is the fact that America is standing behind it (and thus the diplomatic support of many banana republics) and an illegal nuclear program, so it’s leverage when compared to Syria’s is superior, hence why the airstrikes happen in the first place. The incident with the downing of the Russian surveillance plane didn’t really change much, because Moscow knows that apartheid Israel is the main troublemaker in the Middle East (and even more so in Ukraine – those who truly understand Ukrainian history will understand why I say this), and the Syrian war coming to an end (whilst strengthening Israel’s neighbours in parallel) is in itself a blow to Tel Aviv.

What is very common to see now is countries seemingly sat on two chairs – the West and Eurasia. For example: Serbia, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia show signs of looking both West and East. What is going on in reality is many tugs of war between superpowers, and the stronger Russia’s military and China’s economy become, the more it tips the scales in their favour, and the more “multipolar” the world becomes. It’s not that the US’ influence in a “converted” country disappears (the creation of NGOs is not illegal, and liberalism as an ideology cannot be physically destroyed), but more that the influence becomes less as the country adjusts to the new global economic reality. Although if Trump is indeed playing 4D chess with the “deep state” and is deliberately de-globalising the planet, then this shrinking of influence may be more fluid and less volatile than it seems.

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In summary: Turkey – the driving force behind the Anglo-Israeli proxies in Syria – was forced to abandon its plans in Syria after NATO’s Su-24 shootdown gambit failed; Ankara and Moscow now mutually exchange a piece of Idlib for a piece of S-400; the Syrian war is now at the “exit negotiations” stage, but Israel doesn’t want to be left alone with a stronger Syrian Army, Hezbollah, and Palestinian resistance at its border; Russia isn’t in a hurry to liberate Idlib, since an alternative plan is to let the jihadists kill each other like spiders in a jar, thus the lives of SAA soldiers are not put in danger unnecessarily.

PS I am well aware that Turkey creates local councilsmilitary adminstrations, and civilian infrastructure in North Syria, and I am not an advocate of such behavior but I don’t pretend to be more qualified than the Kremlin when it comes to solving such problems. I doubt that the Kurds would have behaved any different had they succeeded to create “rojava” in the summer of 2016. As for America, just look at what it has done to Raqqa and Mosul. Out of these options, I would prefer a temporary Turkish occupation, knowing that in the near future the situation would improve.

Syria in Past 24 Hour: US-Backed SDF’s Military Bases Torched in Popular Uprising in Hasaka

Thu May 23, 2019 2:31
Syria in Past 24 Hour: US-Backed SDF's Military Bases Torched in Popular Uprising in Hasaka
TEHRAN (FNA)- The people of Hasaka set on fire the military bases of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces in a Hasaka region as tensions and differences rose between people and SDF in areas under their control.

Hasaka

The angry residents of Hasaka torched the security centers of SDF across the city, the Arabic-language al-Watan newspaper reported.

The newspaper noted that people’s fury in Hasaka’s Khashman district came after SDF killed a young man who had resisted forced recruitment of soldiers by the SDF.

Al-Watan pointed to the wide differences between Hasaka people and SDF militants in Khashman region, and said the SDF has dispatched reinforcement and military equipment to the region.

Meantime, battlefield sources in Hasaka reported that Asayesh and Military Police militants affiliated to the SDF launched massive attacks on the towns of Nas Tal, Daraja, Un al-Rous and other towns in Tal Barak region, and said that the Kurdish militants have arrested tens of civilians, including teachers, for forced recruitment.

Damascus, Dara’a

The Syrian Army seized a large amount of weapons and military equipment, including Turkish and US-made arms and ammunition, in areas and military bases formerly held by the terrorists Damascus and Dara’a provinces.

The Syrian Army’s engineering units during their clean-up operations in the towns of Damascus and Dara’a province discovered several arms depots and former hideouts of the terrorists which contained large amounts of weapons and military equipment.

Meantime, a Syrian Army’s military source announced that the Syrian Army units found different kinds of machineguns, combat rifles, RPGs, mortar and shoulder-mounted rockets which were made in the US and Turkey.

Hama

The Syrian Army backed by the Russian Air Force thwarted consecutive attacks by terrorists on their military positions in Northern Hama, inflicting heavy losses on the militants and killing at least 80 of them.

The Syrian Army engaged in fierce clashes with Tahrir al-Sham al-Hay’at, Jeish al-Izzah and Turkistani Party terrorist groups who had launched massive rocket attacks on army’s military positions and exploded bomb-laden vehicles along al-Hobait-Kafr Naboudeh axis in Northern Hama.

Meantime, other Syrian Army clashed with other terrorist groups who had attacked the Syrian Army’s military positions in Tal Hawash, al-Hamirat and al-Hawiz regions.

The Arabic-language website of the Russian Sputnik News Agency quoted a military source as saying that the Russian and Syrian fighter jets pounded the contact lines of the terrorists in Khan Sheikhoun, al-Hobait, al-Qasabiyeh and Abedin in Northern Hama and Southern Idlib concurrent with several-hour-long clashes between the Syrian Army and militants.

It noted that the terrorists sustained a heavy defeat in all their failed attacks which were the heaviest of their kind in recent months, and said that at least 80 terrorists were killed and tens of others were injured as well as destroying at least 12 military vehicles and bomb-laden military vehicles.

Meantime, Tahrir al-Sham terrorists deployed in Western Aleppo launched rocket attacks on Aleppo City’s residential areas, injuring several civilians, including children.

The terrorists’ attacks on Aleppo City’s residential areas took place with the aim of supporting the terrorists in Northern Hama.

Idlib, Aleppo

Terrorists in Syria are planning chemical attacks in the Idlib de-escalation zone, as well as in the west of the Aleppo province, the head of the Russian center for Syrian reconciliation said on Tuesday.

“The militants plan to stage such provocations in the village of Jarjanaz, as well as in the town of Saraqib, where a group of children and adults — refugees from the Southern provinces of Syria — have already been gathered. Similar preparations are underway in the West of Aleppo province”, Maj. Gen. Viktor Kupchishin stated at a daily briefing, RIA Novosti reported.

Kupchishin added that terrorists operating in the Idlib de-escalation zone possess a significant amount of poisonous substances with which they fill munitions to use in staged provocations aimed at accusing the Syrian Army of “chemical attacks” against the civilian population.

Also on Wednesday, the Kurdish fighters conducted two military operations on Ankara-backed militants in occupied Afrin region in Northwestern Aleppo, killing and injuring 14 of them, media sources said.

The Kurdish-language Hawar News reported that the Afrin Liberation Forces launched fresh military operations against the Turkish Army and its allied militants in Afrin, hitting a military position of al-Jbahat al-Shamia in the village of Shara which resulted in the death of eight Ankara-backed militants and injury of three others.

The Kurdish fighters also pounded a center of Ahrar al-Sharqiyeh in the town of Bastouleh in Shirava region, killing and injuring three others.

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مخاطر مرحلة ما قبل الإعلان عن «صفقة القرن» ومواجهتها

مايو 8, 2019

العميد د. أمين محمد حطيط

كما بات معلوماً تستعدّ أميركا للإعلان عن صفقة القرن الرامية لتصفية القضية الفلسطينية وتثبيت «إسرائيل» في المنطقة بموقع ريادي قيادي. وهذه تذكّر بما كان طرحه شمعون بيرس منذ 4 عقود ضمن «مشروع الشرق الأوسط الجديد» الذي قال فيه للعرب «بمالكم وثرواتكم مع فكرنا وقيادتنا ينهض الشرق الأوسط ونسيطر على العالم». واليوم وكما أعلن كوشنر عرّاب ما أسمي صفقة القرن هذه، تحضر أميركا للإعلان عن هذه الخطة الجهنمية في حزيران المقبل بخطوطها العريضة الأساسية وببعض عناوينها التفصيلية.

والجدير ذكره، أنّ هذه الخطة وحتى من غير إعلان مضمونها بشكل رسمي وضعت موضع التنفيذ في بعض جزئياتها، وشرعت أميركا بالقيام بما التزمت به في هذه الخطة حيال «إسرائيل» خاصة لجهة فرض السيادة الإسرائيلية على الأرض المحتلة في فلسطين والجولان وإسقاط حق العودة المنصوص عليه بالقرار 194، لكن الإعلان الرسمي عن الخطة والحصول على قبول الأطراف المعنيين تراه أميركا أمراً لا بد منه لضمان نجاح هذه الصفقة وتنفيذها كما أراد واضعوها.

لقد كان مقرّراً في التخطيط الأميركي أن تطلع القوى المعنية بالتنفيذ على الخطة ويُستحصل على قبولها قبل أن تعلن الخطة رسمياً، لكن ما رشح من مواقف بعض المعنيين من رفض مطلق لهذه الخطة التصفوية جعل أميركا تتراجع وتعتمد سياسة الفرض بالأمر الواقع لبعض عناصر الخطة، والضغط المتعدد الوجوه على الأطراف الرافضة بما يفرض عليها الإذعان، ويحرمها من فرص العرقلة او التعطيل. ومن هذا الباب تطل مخاطر مرحلة ما قبل الإعلان عن صفقة القرن في حزيران المقبل، ويمكن القول إنّ الفترة التي تفصلنا عن تاريخ هذا الإعلان في حزيران المقبل ستكون مرحلة خاصة وقاسية تضغط فيها أميركا على القوى الرافضة لتصفية القضية الفلسطينية وتأتي في طليعتها مكونات محور المقاومة بدءاً بإيران وسورية وصولاً الى حزب الله والفصائل الفلسطينية في غزة، خاصة حماس والجهاد الإسلامي والفصائل الفلسطينية المقاومة في غزة وخارجها، وشاملاً العراق أيضاً.

وبمراقبة السلوك الأميركي معطوفاً على دراسة تحليلية للواقع الخاص بكلّ من تلك الكيانات الرافضة لتصفية القضية الفلسطينية، نتوصّل الى توقع او تحديد مواطن العمل العدواني الأميركي الإسرائيلي ومعه أداء خليجي عربي مساعد لضمان نجاح أميركا و»إسرائيل» في تصفية القضية الفلسطينية، ونرى التالي:

أولاً: في سورية، يسجل إمعان أميركا في تنفيذ استراتيجية إطالة أمد الصراع والتصعيد الميداني في إطار حرب استنزاف بدأتها الجماعات الإرهابية التي ترعاها تركيا بتنسيق مستتر مع أميركا، مترافقاً مع تدابير انفصالية تقوم بها الجماعات الكردية شرقي الفرات وحجب ما كانت أعلنت عنه أميركا من سحب القوات الأميركية في سورية وسحبه من التداول، فضلا عن إعادة تنظيم عمل داعش في المنطقة والانتقال بها من استراتيجية الاحتلال والسيطرة المساحية الى استراتيجية الخلايا والأعمال الإرهابية الموجعة دون أن تكون لها قواعد ثابتة. كل هذا يجري مترافقاً مع ضغط أميركي وتهديد بالتدخل العسكري في حال انطلقت سورية في تنفيذ عملية عسكرية لتحرير ادلب والتفرّغ للمنطقة الشرقية.

ثانياُ: في العراق. تسعى أميركا لإعادة إنتاج وإحياء خلايا داعش دون العودة الى السيطرة المناطقية أو تكوين ما أسمي «دولة إسلامية» بل خلق تهديد أمني فاعل ومتواصل من شأنه إرباك الحكومة والشعب في العراق ودفعهما للتمسك والاستعانة بالقوات الأميركية والاستجابة للإملاءات الأميركية في مجال تركيز القواعد العسكرية خلافاً لاتفاقية الإطار الأمني والضغط لوضع اليد على نفط العراق «تسديداً لنفقات الحرب» العدوان على العراق ومنع العراق من التدخل أو الانخراط في أي شأن إقليمي أو تعاون مع محور المقاومة.

ثالثاً في غزة. التصعيد الميداني المترافق مع تشديد الحصار على القطاع وصولاً إلى ما يمكن تسميته بحالة الاختناق العام، لإجبار القطاع على القبول بما سيُلقى إليه من فتات في خطة تصفية القرن، وإشغاله بشؤونه الذاتية خاصة الحياتية معطوفة على الوضع الأمني المتفجر لمنعه من التصدي لتلك الخطة الإجرامية.

رابعاً في لبنان: تسعير عملية الضغط المالي من باب التهويل بخطورة هذا الوضع، مترافقاً مع إعادة الجدل حول شرعية المقاومة ووجوب نزع سلاحها. ومن هنا تأتي إعادة طرح مسألة مزارع شبعا والتشكيك في لبنانيتها او التهويل بالحرب المدمرة الساحقة كما التهويل بإفلاس لبنان والتخويف من إلغاء ما قدمه مؤتمر سيدر لصالح لبنان من أموال.

خامساً إيران: تصعيد الضغوط عليها وحصارها بشكل خانق في كل المجالات الاقتصادية المؤثرة على معيشة الشعب وأداء الحكومة مترافقاً مع التهديد بالمواجهة العسكرية لإنتاج بيئة إشغال ذاتي تصرف إيران عن همومها الإقليمية خاصة في فلسطين وتجعلها تمرّر صفقة القرن من غير أي تدخل يعطلها.

باختصار يمكن القول إن فترة ما قبل الإعلان عن صفقة القرن ستكون فترة قاسية موسومة بعنوان: «النار والحصار للإشغال والترويع وفرض الإذعان» لتمكين أميركا من تصفية القضية الفلسطينية على طريقتها خدمة لـ«إسرائيل» واستباحة للحقوق الفلسطينية والعربية والإسلامية، حيث إن أميركا تخيّر المنطقة بين أمرين: إما الاستسلام والإذعان لإرادتها في تصفية القضية الفلسطينية وإقامة شرق أوسط مستعمر أميركياً بإدارة إسرائيلية أو الحرب المستمرة والتجويع للتركيع. فهل تنجح الخطة؟

اعتقد أن الردّ على استراتيجية أميركا هذه الرامية لإنتاج بيئة التسليم بمخططها، لم يتأخر وقد جاء من قبل المعنيين كل وفقاً لموقعه وقدراته ومجاله وبشكل ينبئ أن الفشل سيكون حليف أميركا أولاً في تهيئة بيئة إطلاق الصفقة، وثانياً في الصفقة ذاتها. وهنا ننوّه بما صدر عن الأمين العام لحزب الله السيد حسن نصرالله من مواقف قاطعة تقول إن التهويل بالحرب لن يجدي وإن الحرب التي تهوّلون بها سترتدّ عليكم عاراً ودماراً، أما إيران فقد صاغت منظومتها العسكرية الاقتصادية وعلاقاتها بشكل يُحبط الخطة الأميركية ويسقطها ويعطل كل أهدافها، ومن جهة أخرى كان التنسيق السوري العراقي في الميدان الحدودي من جهة وعمليات الجيش السوري في منطقة إدلب كافيين للقول إن خطة أميركا لن تمرّ ولن تنجح، وأخيراً شكل مشهد النار المرتدّة من غزة وحولها جواباً قاطعاً بأن القطاع لن يخضع وبأن قرار الصمود والمواجهة لا تراجع عنه مطلقاً.

وباختصار نستطيع القول بأن أميركا وأتباعها المعنيين بصفقة القرن سيحاولون بالنار والحصار إنتاج بيئة الخضوع والإذعان لخطة ما يُسمّى «صفقة القرن» بكل وحشية ولا أخلاقية وبأعمال لا شرعية ولا قانونية من أجل تمرير الصفقة وحمل الأطراف على الإذعان لها، لكن محور المقاومة وبكل مكوّناته وكل وفقاً لدائرة عمله عازم على التصدي وإفشال المسعى ومنع تصفية القضية.

إنها مواجهة مركبة قاسية خلال فترة ستكون حامية خلال الشهر المقبل وتتطلّب مزيداً من التحمل في المجال الاقتصادي واستمراراً في الحزم والقوة في الميدان.

أستاذ جامعي وباحث استراتيجي.

 

مقالات مشابهة

Trump, Erdogan and the buffer zone in Syria ترامب وأردوغان والمنطقة العازلة في سورية

Trump, Erdogan and the buffer zone in Syria

فبراير 21, 2019

Written by Nasser Kandil,

The statements of the US President Donald Trump about his decision to withdraw from Syria include that he grants all Syria to the Turkish President Recep Erdogan who was notified that by a phone call with Trump who published that later in a tweet. The US National Security Advisor John Bolton came to the region and he made number of statements after his meetings with Israeli officials, he said that he would inform the Turkish officials and the President Erdogan that attacking the Kurds; the allies of America is something unallowable. Therefore, all of Syria became for Erdogan except the areas under the Kurdish control. When Bolton arrived to Ankara, Erdogan refused to receive him and he told him harsh words that Turkey does not get orders regarding its national security and that Washington does not distinguish between the Kurds and the militants whom it supports. Trump replied that if Turkey attacked the Kurdish militants, its Turkish economy will be collapsed. The Turks responded that they do not care about the US threat. Then a phone call between Trump and Erdogan took place that was followed by an understanding on a buffer zone established by Turkey on the Syrian borders under the consent and the support of Washington. As a result, there was a Turkish promoting campaign about its intention to establish a security buffer zone.

This context is unbelievable as political and operational plans between a super power named America and a major regional country named Turkey. The Tweets and the phone calls by the US President and his issuing statements such as “All of Syria is yours” “Do not approach from the Kurds” “I will destroy the Turkish economy” and “we support a buffer zone” do not indicate only that he is funny, but also that the Turkish President is funny too, because their feeling of inability needs something in media to support them. It is not forgettable the positions which focused on  the American-Turkish serious research in the project of the buffer zone and how the considerations  of the American and Turkish forces lead to dismiss the risk of turning this wish into a realistic project.

Trump wants us to be convinced that he is able to support Erdogan to establish a buffer zone, while he is withdrawing from Syria, although he was unable to do so while his forces were in Syria. While Erdogan wants us to be convinced that he is capable to establish a buffer zone after he fled from the battle of Aleppo and left his group defeated moving to Astana understandings to get the Russian and the Iranian appeal to avoid the confrontation which he fears, although he was unable to establish it when he challenged Russia and dropped its plane while he was leading the armed groups which had control over half of Syria. He may think that after his failure in implementing his commitments in Idlib, he can barter the coverage of the military operation which became an inevitable duty on the Syrian army, with getting a consolation prize to enter to some of the Syrian border villages. He does not understand yet that the Syrian-Russian-Iranian understanding is based on the withdrawal of all the forces which do not have legal understandings with the Syrian country and not to bargain on the Syrian sovereignty and the unity of its territories.

One stable fact approved by the Syrian position towards Erdogan’s statements that the alliance of defeated will not get during in its weakness what he wanted to get during its strength and that the Syrian country is ready for all possibilities including firing if necessary to prevent affecting its sovereignty and unity. His foolish statements have one benefit; to convince the Kurdish leaderships of the nature of their American ally and that the Syrian country is their only guarantor of security of land and people.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

ترامب وأردوغان والمنطقة العازلة في سورية 

يناير 16, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– بعد تصريحات للرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب في تفسير قراره بالانسحاب من سورية، تضمّنت قوله إنه يمنح سورية كلها للرئيس التركي رجب أردوغان، بكلمات تبلّغها أردوغان على الهاتف في اتصال مع ترامب، نشر محتواها ترامب في تغريدة يقول فيها «لقد قلت لأردوغان إن سورية كلها لك»، جاء مستشار الأمن القومي الأميركي جون بولتون إلى المنطقة وأطلق بعد لقاءاته بالمسؤولين الإسرائيليين تصريحات يقول فيها إنه سيبلغ المسؤولين الأتراك والرئيس أردوغان بأن المساس بالأكراد كحلفاء لأميركا ممنوع، فصار الموقف الأميركي عنوانه سورية كلها لأردوغان ما عدا مناطق السيطرة الكردية، وعندما وصل بولتون إلى أنقرة رفض أردوغان استقباله وسمع كلاماً قاسياً مضمونه أن تركيا لا تتلقى التعليمات في ما يخصّ أمنها القومي، وأن واشنطن لا تميز بين الأكراد والمسلحين الذين تدعمهم، فردّ ترامب بأنه إذا مسّت تركيا بالمسلحين الأكراد فسوف يدمر الاقتصاد التركي، ورد الأتراك بأنهم لا يأبهون بالتهديد الأميركي، وتم اتصال هاتفي بين ترامب وأردوغان أعقبه كلام مشترك عن التفاهم على منطقة عازلة تقيمها تركيا على الحدود مع سورية بموافقة ودعم من واشنطن، وبدأت حملة تسويق تركية لنظرية قديمة جديدة عن عزمها إقامة منطقة أمنية عازلة.

– هذا السياق يقول إن ما أمامنا هو أقل من أن نصدقه كخطط سياسية وعملياتية بين دولة عالمية عظمى هي أميركا ودولة إقليمية كبرى هي تركيا، فالانتقال بتغريدات على تويتر واتصالات هاتفية من قبل الرئيس الأميركي بمواقف تراوحت من «قلت له سورية كلها لك» إلى «إياك والمساس بالأكراد» إلى «سأدمّر الاقتصاد التركي» إلى «ندعم إقامة منطقة عازلة» لا يدلّ على خفة الرئيس الأميركي فقط، بل وعلى خفة الرئيس التركي أيضاً، وشعورهما معاً بالعجز والضعف حاجتهما لـ»البهورات» الإعلامية لصناعة قوة ليس بين يدَيْ كل منهما، ولم تكن بيدهما معاً يوم كانا معاً، والذاكرة ليست ببعيدة عن المواقف التي شكّل محورها في بحث جدي أميركي تركي في مشروع المنطقة العازلة، وكيف كانت الحسابات المشتركة لمصادر القوة الأميركية والتركية تؤدي لصرف النظر عن المخاطرة بتحويل هذه الأمنية مشروعاً واقعياً.

– يريد ترامب منا أن نقتنع أنه قادر على تقديم المساندة لأردوغان لإقامة المنطقة العازلة وهو ينسحب من سورية، بعدما لم يكن قادراً على ذلك وقواته موجودة في سورية. ويريد أردوغان منا أن نقتنع بأنه قادر على إقامة المنطقة العازلة بعدما هرب من معركة حلب وترك جماعته تُهزم، واستدار إلى تفاهمات أستانة، باحثاً عن الرضا الروسي والإيراني تفادياً للمواجهة التي يخشاها، وهو لم يكن قادراً على إقامتها يوم تحدّى روسيا وأسقط طائرتها وكان في ذروة قيادته للجماعات المسلحة التي كانت يومها تسيطر على نصف سورية، إلا إذا كانت الخفة قد بلغت به حدّ التوهم أنه بعد فشله في تنفيذ تعهداته في إدلب قادر على عرض المقايضة بين تغطية العملية العسكرية التي باتت قدراً حتمياً هناك، على يد الجيش السوري، بالحصول على ما يسمّيه جائزة ترضية بالدخول إلى بعض القرى الحدودية السورية، وهو لم يفهم بعد أن التفاهم السوري الروسي الإيراني قائم على ركيزة على تراجع عنها هي، انسحاب جميع القوات التي لا تربطها تفاهمات قانونية مع الدولة السورية وعدم المساومة على السيادة السورية ووحدة التراب السوري في ظلها.

– الحقيقة الثابتة التي أكدها الموقف السوري من تصريحات أردوغان هي أن حلف المهزومين لن يحصل في زمن الضعف على ما فشل في الحصول عليه في ذروة زمن القوة، وأن الدولة السورية مستعدّة لكل الاحتمالات بما فيها إطلاق النار إذا اقتضى الأمر ذلك لمنع المساس بسيادتها ووحدتها، وأن لتصريحاته الحمقاء فائدة واحدة هي إقناع القيادات الكردية بطبيعة حليفهم الأميركي، وأحادية خيار وضع أوراقهم كلها في عهدة دولتهم السورية كضامن وحيد لأمن الأرض والشعب في سورية.

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SYRIAN WAR REPORT – APR. 22, 2019: CHEMICAL WEAPONS WAREHOUSE EXPLODED IN WESTERN ALEPPO

South Front

A supposed chemical weapons warehouse of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nursa) near city of al-Atarib in western Aleppo exploded on April 20. According to pro-government sources, the warehouse was one of the sites where militants were arming rockets and shells with toxic materials.

Members of the notorious propaganda organization “White Helmets” reportedly recovered the bodies of at least six people killed in the explosion. Three injured persons were evacuated to nearby hospitals.

The version of the events provided by pro-militant media outlets argues that the targeted facility was belonging to a local pharmaceutical company known as “al-Khalil” and stored “baby milk” only. Pro-opposition media added that the explosion was likely caused by an improvised explosive device. Nonetheless, it remains unclear who would need to blow up a baby milk storage facility.

Over the past few months, Russia and Syria have repeatedly warned that members of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and the White Helmets, with assistance from Western intelligences, are making preparations for staging chemical attacks that would be blamed on the Assad government.

Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, Horas al-Din and several other radical groups have carried out a series of attacks on positions of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) near the so-called Idlib de-escalation zone. The most successful attacks took place in al-Saraya, northern Lattakia, where 5 SAA troops were killed and in western Aleppo, where over 15 SAA soldiers died.

Additionally, pro-militant sources as well as several Kurdish outlets, linked with the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), came with a new round of speculations about supposed clashes between “Russian” and “Iranian” forces in the provinces of Aleppo and Deir Ezzor. The SAA denounced these claims as fake news.

These claims appear to be a part of a well-coordinated military psychological operation that’s aimed to undermine the Syrian-Iranian-Russian alliance. Similar reports repeatedly appeared over the past few years, but every time they were not supported by any evidence.

The situation remains tense in the desert area between the cities of Palmyra and Deir Ezzor. The ISIS news agency Amaq claimed on April 19 that ISIS members had ambushed an SAA convoy near the al-Bishri mount killing at least 20 soldiers and destroying 4 vehicles.

SDF-linked Kurdish insurgents continued their attacks on Turkish forces in the region of Afrin. On April 19, Kurdish fighters targeted alleged Turkish positions near Maryamayn and Villat al-Qadi with anti-tank guided missiles. Pro-Kurdish sources claim that 6 Turkish soldiers were killed. However, the Turkish military released no statements regarding its casualties. Therefore, most likely the attacked positions belonged to Turkish-backed militants.

Syria’s naval port of Tartus will be given for lease to Russia for 49 years, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Yuri Borisov told journalists on April 20 after meeting with Syria’s President Bashar Assad. Moscow will use the port for economic and logistical purposes.

Russia already has a naval facility in Tartus, which was set up at the second largest port. This military facility is currently undergoing modernization.

These developments took place amid the growing economic cooperation between Russia’s Republic of Crimea and Syria. According to official estimates, the cargo turnover between Crimea and Syria may reach 150,000t by the end of 2019. During the recent Yalta economic conference in Crimea, Syria and the local authorities reached even more agreements on the economic cooperation.

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Foreign backed terrorism in Iran: Part two – US/Israeli backed insurgency and separatism in western Iran

April 18, 2019

By Aram Mirzaei for the Saker blog

Foreign backed terrorism in Iran: Part two – US/Israeli backed insurgency and separatism in western Iran

In the previous article, we examined the prevalence of US/Israeli backed terrorism in eastern Iran where Baluchi Salafists have received arms and funding from the CIA and Mossad. In this second part of the article series we will examine the US/Israeli support for terrorists and separatists in western Iran among the Kurdish ethnic group.

The Kurdish situation in western Iran

The Kurdish question in Iran is a long running one that stretches back to the WWII era. While Kurdish revolts occurred already during the 1920s these were not motivated out of nationalist sentiment but rather out of tribal opposition to the monarchy’s attempts to centralize the state of Iran. The Qajar dynasty and later the Pahlavi dynasty attempted to consolidate power around Tehran in a time when the Iranian nation was fragmented into areas of tribal and ethnic influence. Simko Shikak was one of the powerful Kurdish chieftains that with Ottoman backing led the first revolt in 1918, against the Qajar dynasty, as the Ottoman’s were fierce rivals of the severely weakened Iranian state, attempted to gain influence over western Iran. Another reason for the Ottoman involvement was motivated by the slaughter of the large Iranian Armenian population in the West Azerbaijan province of Iran. But it was not only the Ottomans that backed these separatist tribal ambitions as Tehran repeatedly called out British influence and support for the tribal rebellions. The British role was mainly motivated by their desire to remove the Qajar dynasty from power and install a new Shah that they could more easily control, thus also triumphing over the Russian Empire in the struggle for influence over Iran.

British intervention in Persia was at its height during the coup d’etat of 1921. Although the coup itself was executed by Persians, it received vital assistance from, and was probably actually initiated by, certain British military officers and officials in Iran, most importantly Major-General Sir Edmund Ironside, Commander of Norperforce, Lieutenant-Colonel Henry Smyth, who was unofficially and “almost secretly” attached to the Cossacks at Qazvin, and Walter A Smart, the Oriental Secretary.

After the coup, Reza Shah Pahlavi, the new Shah of Iran ultimately crushed the Kurdish tribal rebellion and the subsequent ones imitated during 1929 and 1941. It wasn’t until 1946 when the real danger of separatism became prevalent in Iran with the Iranian crisis of 1946 and the aftermath of the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran during WWII. One of the first crises of the Cold War was initiated in 1946 when Stalin refused to relinquish occupied Iranian territory as the Soviets felt that the successor to Reza Shah Pahlavi, his son Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, a staunch anti-communist was a danger to Soviet interests, especially with regards to the Truman doctrine. By mid-December 1945, with the use of troops and secret police, they had set up two pro-Soviet “People’s Democratic Republics” in northwestern Iran, the Azerbaijan People’s Republic headed by Sayyid Jafar Pishevari and the Kurdish Republic of Mahabad under Pesheva Qazi Muhammad and Mustafa Barzani, father to current US puppet Mahmoud Barzani who was the previous president of the autonomous Kurdish region in Iraq before last year’s scandalous attempt at independence for the KRG (Kurdish regional government). Though Mustafa Barzani fled Iran and went back to Iraq, so called Marxist oriented parties such as Komala and the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDP-I) continued their hostilities not just with the Pahlavi regime but also later on with Islamic Republic after 1979, although these parties moved on from advocating separatism to specific demands and requests. This is due to the relatively low interest in separatism among the Kurdish public in Iran, mainly because of the close cultural, linguistic and historical relations that the Kurdish people and the rest of the Iranian society share.

Kurdish Insurrection after the Islamic Revolution and Israeli activities in western Iran

Since 2004, an armed conflict has been ongoing in the western provinces of Iran between the Iranian government forces and the so called “Party for a free life in Kurdistan” (PJAK). The group is said to be a branch of the PKK terrorist group in Turkey. The group settled in the area controlled by the PKK on the slopes of Mount Qandil, less than 16 kilometres from the Iranian border. Once established at Qandil and operating under the PKK’s security umbrella, the group began conducting sporadic attacks on Iranian border guards and security forces until a ceasefire commenced in 2011.

With the outbreak of the Syrian and Iraqi wars against terrorism, and with Iran focusing heavily on supporting the Syrian and Iraqi governments, the conflict resurged and intensified in 2016, this time with several other Kurdish militant groups also joining in, as US and Israeli support for Kurdish groups across the Middle East escalated. In an obvious show of solidarity with the Zionist state’s growing worries about the JCPOA (Iran Nuclear Deal), the KDP-I stated that it was returning to militancy after two decades of cessation of hostilities: “Since Iran has signed the atomic [nuclear deal] agreement, Iran thinks whatever they do, the outside world does not care. That is why we were forced to choose this approach,” Hassan Sharafi, the deputy leader of the PDKI said. Conveniently for the Zionist state and Washington, PJAK and leftist group Komalah immediately expressed their support for renewed hostilities and began attacking Iranian security forces respectively in the midst of Iran’s struggle against Takfiri terrorists across the region.

The Zionist state has for long had close relations to Kurdish groups across the Middle East as part of their “Alliance of the periphery” doctrine which calls for Israel to develop close strategic alliances with non-Arab Muslim states in the Middle East to counteract the united opposition of Arab states. After the fall of the Iranian monarchy and with Turkey’s recent Islamic resurgence, the strategy is mainly applied towards the Kurdish people, with Israeli government officials providing extensive support to Kurdish political parties and their aspirations for greater self-government and even independence. The government of Iraqi Kurdistan has maintained open ties with Israel and is an influential lobby for the establishment of normal diplomatic relations between Israel and Iraq. Israel remains today the closest regional ally of the YPG forces in Syria as well as the KRG in Iraq.

Documents leaked in 2010 by Wikileaks prove that Israeli Mossad chief Meir Dagan wanted to use Kurds and ethnic minorities to topple the Iranian government. The Israeli spy service wanted to have a weak divided Iran, like in Iraq where the Kurds have their own government, the spy chief told an U.S. official. According to a memo from August 2007, Dagan described to Under-Secretary of State Nicholas Burns the five pillars of Israel’s Iran policy, among them the desire to spark a revolution. The memo noted, ‘instability in Iran is driven by inflation and tension among ethnic minorities. This, Dagan said, “presents unique opportunities, and Israelis and Americans might see a change in Iran in their lifetimes.”

Dagan noted that Iran could end up like Iraq. “As for Iraq, it may end up a weak, federal state comprised of three cantons or entities, one each belonging to the Kurds, Sunnis and Shias.” He added that Iran’s minorities are “raising their heads, and are tempted to resort to violence.”

“It’s Realpolitik. By aligning with the Kurds Israel gains eyes and ears in Iran,” observed a former Israeli intelligence officer. Interestingly, PJAK themselves claim they receive no support from Washington or Tel Aviv. In an interview with Slate magazine in June 2006, PJAK spokesman Ihsan Warya stated that he “nevertheless points out that PJAK really does wish it were an agent of the United States, and that [PJAK is] disappointed that Washington hasn’t made contact.” The Slate article continues stating that the PJAK wishes to be supported by and work with the United States in overthrowing the government of Iran in a similar way to the US eventually cooperated with Kurdish organisations in Iraq in overthrowing the government of Iraq. Surely by now it is no secret that Kurdish chieftains and officials love to be the staunch vassals of Washington and Tel Aviv.

The KRG has even been so generous to offer its territory as a base for Mossad terrorists to launch operations inside Iran. According to several sources, the Mossad operates in the KRG to launch covert operations inside Iran and acquire intelligence on Iran’s nuclear program. “Israeli drones are said to be operating against Iran from bases inside the KRG,” wrote Patrick Seale, a British expert on the Middle East.

The London-based Sunday Times reported that, according to “Western intelligence sources,” during early 2012 Israeli commandos and special forces members carried out missions in Iran that were launched from the KRG. The Zionist terrorists, dressed in Iranian military uniforms, entered Iran in modified Black Hawk helicopters and travelled to Parchin, the site of an Iranian military complex just 30 kilometres southeast of Tehran, and Fordow, an Iranian military base with an underground uranium enrichment facility. The report claims that these forces utilized advanced technology to monitor radioactivity levels and record explosive tests carried out at the military facilities. Whether this report is true or part of a psychological war, I guess we’ll never know.

In addition to all of this, Arab separatism is on the rise in the western Khuzestan province where a large Arab minority reside. The 2018 Ahvaz Military Parade terrorist attack where 29 people were killed was evidence of a recent surge in Arab separatist activities. The Islamic Republic suspects that both Saudi Arabia and the Persian Gulf states offer political and financial support to Arab separatist groups and personalities operating in the West, who in turn funnel the cash to militant networks inside Iran. Suspicions that regional rivals had a hand in the terror attack was intensified by pathetic comments made by Abdul Khaliq Abdullah, a former advisor to the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince, that the Ahvaz attack did not constitute an act of terrorism since it was aimed at a military target. The significance of this inflammatory remark lies in Saudi Crown prince Mohammad Bin Salman’s statement that Saudi Arabia would take the battle “inside” Iran. Since the Saudi monarchy themselves are Zionist agents, we should again look for Washington and Tel Aviv’s hand in this latest campaign targeting yet another minority group in Iran.

The Islamic Republic is under attack from all sides with Washington and Tel Aviv specifically targeting ethnic minorities living in the border areas in the eastern and western regions of Iran. As Washington and Tel Aviv have admitted in the past, a full scale invasion of Iran is highly unlikely due to the size of the country and the large popular support the Islamic Republic enjoys, instead the Zionist Empire has deemed insurgency and fomenting a civil war to be the best way to weaken their adversaries, just like they did in Syria and Iraq. I expect these campaigns to escalate as the Islamic Republic gains more influence across the region and the Zionist Empire growing more and more frustrated each day.

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