NUKES, BUGS, AND GAS IN HYBRID WARS: NUCLEAR, BIOLOGICAL AND CHEMICAL PROTECTION TROOPS OF RUSSA

South Front

This video was originally released by SouthFront in August 2016. In the coming weeks, SouthFront is going to release a series of exclusive videos covering various aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic. These videos will provide a closer look at means, measures and structures employed by nations to combat the outbreak.

The recent spate of reports that Russian Radio-Chemical Defense (RKhB) Troops  have been deployed to the Yamal Peninsula in order to combat an anthrax breakout among the local fauna brought attention to a relatively unknown and even unglamorous branch of the Russian Armed Forces which is tasked with protecting own forces, infrastructure, and civilian population from the effects of weapons of mass destruction. With a history dating back to Russian Imperial Army’s independent chemical companies of World War I, and extensive service during the Great Patriotic War as smoke-laying and flame-throwing troops, the best known example of RKhB Troops in action is the operation to put out the fire at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant which demonstrated their technical prowess and self-sacrificial dedication to their life-saving mission.

Even though the Cold War, and the prospect of widespread use of nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons, have receded in the public’s mind, having been replaced by terrorism as the most immediate security threat, the recent deterioration of the international situation means that we are likely to see increased usage of these weapons in the coming decades.

The growth in the importance of non-state actors as US and NATO proxy warriors in Libya, Syria, and other parts of the world also have meant that such actors, confident in their Western patronage, may use prohibited weapons with legal impunity. We have seen such use on several occasions in Syria, with “moderate rebels” using nerve agents shipped from the post-Gaddafi Libya and possibly even Saudi Arabia, and more recently resorting to chlorine cylinders. The use of a so-called “dirty bomb”, or a radioactivity dispersal device, is an ever-present threat lurking in the minds of security planners around the world, including Russia. Finally, given the importance of Russia’s agriculture as a pillar of its economy and a component of its national security strategy, the use of pathogens targeting crops and livestock is also a plausible threat that must be countered. While Russian forces or civilians have not yet been explicitly targeted by such weapons, it is a virtual certainty that they will be used if the West’s so far unsuccessful “hybrid war” against Russia continues. With the West growing increasingly desperate to compel Russia to abandon its sovereignty, and given its until recently unthinkable policies such as arming radical Islamists and neo-Nazis, providing them with weapons of mass destruction for use against Russia cannot be ruled out either.

For that reason, RKhB Troops have also been the beneficiaries of the recent Russian military modernization efforts, and have undergone an expansion following the drastic post-Soviet cutbacks. The core of today’s RKhB Troops consists of four RKhB brigades, stationed one apiece in each of the four military districts. The post-2008 financial crisis rise in international threat levels has prompted an expansion by reactivating 10 RKhB regiments, with each army headquarters receiving a regiment. In addition to conducting radiological, chemical, and biological reconnaissance and decontamination, RKhB Troops retain the traditional roles of smoke-laying and flame-throwing, which means their armament even includes the TOS-1 Solntsepyok rocket self-propelled flamethrowing vehicles that have proven themselves in Syria and Iraq against Islamist militants.

Historically the best equipped chemical troops in the world, Russian RKhB Troops are continuing that tradition to this day, with the introduction of the Nerkhta gas-proof suits and PMK-3 protective masks and the extensive provision of advanced armored reconnaissance vehicles, including the BTR-80-based RKhM-6 and MTLB-based RKhM-5. Recent large-scale military exercises have also featured the employment of RKhB units and troop operations under the conditions of simulated contamination.

Like other recent Russian military preparations, these efforts are intended with deterrence in mind.  Having potent defensive capabilities may be sufficient to dissuade would-be attackers from using such weapons in the first place. However, should deterrence fail, RKhB Troops stand ready to perform their missions.

The War of Terror on Syria Through Forensic Medicine – GRAPHIC

March 23, 2020 Arabi Souri

The War of Terror on Syria through Forensic Medicine

This is Part 1 of a documentary series by investigative reporter Ugarit Dandash, the documentary is part of Ms. Dandash’s From the Ground documentary series where she reports from Syria the horrors the Syrian people lived inflicted on them by the USA and all its cronies, lackeys, and stooges combined efforts over the past 9 years.

From the Ground – The Syrian War through the Eyes of Forensic Medicine was made exclusively for the Lebanese Al Mayadeen news station in Arabic. It was aired on Thursday night 19 March 2020.

All countries which supported the ‘freedom fighters’, ‘armed opposition’, ‘moderate rebels’, call them whatever Orwellian name that suits you, are an accomplice in each crime committed against the Syrian people, needless to say, that each taxpayer and each citizen of those countries has much blood on their hands especially those who keep quiet hiding behind the ‘democracy elections’ delusion while their governments kill in their names, murder using their money, destroy families and hide behind the ‘democracy’ slogan, and not being held by those citizens for the crimes they committed all over the world. If you didn’t know for over 9 years what your government did in Syria, this will leave you with no excuse.

The video file size is beyond the capacity of our site, our YouTube channel was long deleted by YouTube, so we had to split it into two parts embedded below, followed by the transcript in English of the full video for history. Please excuse any typos, it was definitely unintentional.

Part 1 of 2, Episode 1:

Part 2 of 2, Episode 1:

The full video is also available on BitChute.

English translation transcript:

The War in the Eyes of Forensic Medicine – 1

Report by Ugarit Dandash

During the years of the war in Syria, forensics carried out its traditional role which people know and carried out an unconventional role handling the war-related cases which the forensic medicine dealt with during the wartime.

The forensic medicine has presented much, within a short period of time, we inspected 230407 cases of martyrs and injured, despite the low number of forensic doctors in the Syrian Arab Republic.

Forensic Medicine, like all other sectors, suffered bleeding, we had martyrs among the doctors and forensic employees, in addition to the immigration of a number of the forensic doctors, and despite that the forensic medicine carried out its role completely, work more like a miracle and this is what the viewers will notice when they watch this episode.

It managed to reveal the facts, reveal the right and justice, there’s a misconception among some who are uninformed that the forensic doctor only inspects the body and writes the report then their role ends, no, there are rights, legal, humanitarian, and moral consequences based on the report of the forensic doctor. The matter is of high sensitivity and importance. There are many news flashes that appear on the screen but many people do not read what’s beyond it and do not read its hidden nature, they do not know that forensic medicine was the main source of information for this news. Forensic Medicine managed to reveal the truth and push away the exiting ambiguity, this forensic medicine carried out a great role during the wartime.

Like all people on the streets we used to receive the echo of the events that there were protesters and they were shot at by the authorities, the army men were shooting them, or they were shot from a close distance, but as professionals dealing with bodies, the body was giving us indications of what was actually going on.

We were not in the picture of the events we were always coming after, at the beginning of the crisis when bodies were reaching us in 2011 we noticed that the gunshots were coming from long distances and from high directions, meaning that there was a sniper in a building somewhere about 50 or 60 meters away and on the 4th or 5th floor of a building, as in one of the bodies, it was definitely not shot from a close distance.

In the second stage when there were strict orders for riot policemen not to carry their weapons, I remember that in one Friday I wrote 125 reports for members of the riot policemen beaten with sticks and stones, and after a while we started getting law enforcement members shot in addition to some civilians, we were saying if those law enforcement members were doing the shooting then who shot them? They started telling that their colleagues were shooting them because they refused to shoot!

In the next stage we started noting the use of Pump-Action shotguns, it’s a type of hunting rifles. I believe there is no regular army that carries this type of rifle. Some might ask why Pump-Action rifles? This rifle doesn’t need a professional to use it, once fired from the shot comes out with a conical diameter and hits a number of people, we also noticed several bodies with gunshot marks from the hunting rifles and also we noticed it was struck by torturing tools like large stones, knives, or machetes. We were seeing gunshot marks on the body and next to it marks indicating the use of sharp tools.

There are always vital signs accompanying the wound that occurs only when the person is alive, When a person is injured while they are alive, the wound bleeds, clotting factors act, and reactions occur in the body, such as a crunch and inflammation, while we don’t see all these symptoms when the deceased person is injured, the knife stab is like a stab in a doll, or a stab in a sponge. the vital signs of relapse do not appear, and the blood is a fluid that does not coagulate; for us, these things are simple and we can tell that these wounds were inflicted on the person after death, because we started seeing the abuse and mutilation of corpses.

Each stage lasted about two weeks, then after a month and a half between the end of April and the beginning of May 2011 kidnapping and torture stage started. A body would arrive at the morgue, it would be handcuffed or blindfolded, and there would be other marks of a gunshot or slaughter or killing or mutilation.

After about 1.5 months or two months the kidnapping, torture and killing stage started. Even the kidnapping was gradual, at first the victim would be covered with his own cloth and strangled with what he was wearing, then we started seeing bodies tied up by iron skewers then by plastic handcuffs, you’d notice that there’s more planning and more organizing in this thing.

Forensic medicine was able to block all the doors in their faces in many of the situations.

Question: There was always doubting in any reports and whatever the Syrian state was declaring, and the forensic medicine is a state institute, was there confidence in the forensic medicine among international organizations like when dealing with the fact-finding missions (which came to Syria), was there any challenge in the forensics reports or the scientific indications were sufficient to silence any challenge?

Answer: I attended international committees, let’s take the chemical subject for instance, they were asking me questions like when did you go from Al-Razi Hospital to the University Hospital? How long did the trip take when there was traffic jam and when there was no traffic jam? The details were to this extent in this matter. Despite that, and because we were confident in our information and in our science, thanks to God, and because we were not distorting the truth, we were able to convince them with the existing facts. Thanks to God we are very precise, and I was surprised when they would ask me questions like how long it takes between Al Razi Hospital and the University Hospital when there was traffic and when there wasn’t…

Question: Are we talking now about the use of chemical weapons in Khan Al Asal in 2013?

Answer: No, we are talking about the attacks that followed. They were asking questions like: why did you inspect all the injured? Why did you inspect the soldier victims? What do they have to do with this? We told them that at first we inspect all cases and then we segregate them, but at first all cases have to be inspected, they were focusing on such type of questions, like what did you smell when you arrive at the scene? Of course, they had their own specialist technicians, but thankfully, they were never able to (question our reports). Also, in Jisr Shoghour, for instance, they had a large number of forensic doctors and forensic technicians who tried to refute the official narrative which was the truthful narrative, like: the focus was on the time of death because there was a difference in that between two groups of martyrs, we managed to prove to them by scientific evidence that the case was not…

Question: Let’s stop at Jisr Shoghour, from the beginning, so we can remind of what happened. We are talking about two incidences in Jisr Shoghour, the famous incident and there was a previous one you talked about, let’s start from the one that happened first, how long was it before the massacre and what happened in Jisr Shoghour, especially that all talks that time that protests were peaceful?

Answer: The magnitude of what happened in Jisr Shoghour, its ugliness, makes people forget what happened before it. On 5 June 2011, a security force along with riot police went to support the besieged soldiers in the Jisr Shoghour main post. The group was 105 servicemen in total, all of them martyred. Let me stop here at an area called Urum al-Joz, this has to be highlighted. On 5 June 2011, the crisis was in its early days and as they were claiming it was ‘peaceful’, at that time I was heading the forensic medicine office in Idlib province. The forensic medicine examined and found qualitative injuries, severe ones, professional in sniping, of course, none of the martyrs didn’t get to their weapons, ever, they were killed while on the buses. At the time one of the judges asked me, he was martyred afterward by Nusra Front, he asked me, what is the need for autopsy in such a situation? We have dozens of martyrs in the lands we are examining, so I answer that autopsy for the sake of history.

I’m not a politician but a science man and I read the circumstances, the crisis didn’t come suddenly and enter Syria, there were shockwaves all over the Arab world, we were watching and seeing, and we were seeing unrelated things, in addition that one of the main tasks of forensics is to document because the forensic medicine aims for rights to be restored and justice to prevail, we have to document in order for every person to get their rights, but when documenting we were discovering how much we were under an untruthful media narrative, and I’m trying to be as much as unbiased with my words here, but there was media disinformation.

As per my segregation of the cases which I consider was in the fifth stage, as in the forth stage there were gunshots among the civilian victims but there were also gunshots among the armed men and there were also gunshots among the army soldiers because clashes happened and we couldn’t know what was going on, but the following stage which was the fifth and was around July (2011), it was the stage of explosions, the massacres stage started, we would receive a case of a bus would that was coming from a village and the bus was blown up, they were entering a house of a family and then kill and liquidate all its members, this was the most dangerous stage because it caused a state of panic, there were displacing operations for entire families from certain areas and an attempt to create small cantons so they can control it, this stage was in July 2011.

He asked me: What do you mean by autopsy for history? I told him you’ll know what I mean by autopsy for history when I finish the examination. With the autopsy of the bodies of 3 martyrs, we demonstrated that the gunshot used is advanced gunfire using a modern sniper, all the martyrs were sniped from long distances, which means, the situation is very serious, there are sophisticated quality weapons and there are trained snipers, this is not amateurs using guns for the first time, here comes the role of forensics.

Question: Let’s talk about the incident that you told me about, which is the martyred soldier…

Answer: O One of the martyrs I examined his body, I was surprised that the gunshot was from a distance of hundreds of meters. could be 200 or 300 meters or more, we could not determine its extent, but it is very far, you find that the gunshot penetrated the helmet that was worn by the martyr, then went through the frontal bone, then the brain material, then the temporal bone, and you know what the temporal bone means, then the occipital bone and then the helmet. It was a strange thing, I was surprised at that time as forensic medicine that there was a weapon of this quality, the subject was very dangerous, a bullet-like this is very sophisticated, and a qualitative weapon like this is used by a very professional sniper.

Question: In this case, there was no forensic role that could at least warn or influence subsequent events?

Answer: We warned at the time, and I warned in a number of meetings, I was in Idlib, then in Aleppo, then the Director-General of Forensic Medicine in the Syrian Arab Republic, I always seek what is called preventive forensic medicine, which we warn of about aspects that pose a threat to society and the security of society, how about this topic, it poses a danger to the whole society, we warned in a number of meetings that there are advanced qualitative weapons that are used in Syria, when you talk about June 5, 2011, at the beginning of the events, they had more advanced weapons than the army, unfortunately, this is the fact, we, as forensics, always seek to show the community that there are dangerous matters that must be taken care of, as we give this information we give it to beware, because there must be cautious and we know how to deal with what is coming, what is coming I told them will be very dangerous, and events have proven this.

Question: This thing happened before the famous Jisr Al-Shughour massacre?

Answer: We went to Jisr Al-Shughour, and of course there was a huge media hype. The opposition and the Western media, even including the Western ambassadors present, there was still official dealings with the government, and there were Arab, foreign and Gulf (GCC) media, many Gulf media, and the Gulf ambassadors at that time, they tried in any way and means to refute and challenge the true official narration, we as forensic medicine went (there), I was with them, we found 90 bodies and remained a number of bodies are missing, we examined them and stopped at a number of points, first, the abuse that occurred after death and the torture that occurred during life was something very strange in the Syrian society that foretells a disaster. One of the martyrs I examined was longitudinally divided into two halves, one of the martyrs was buried alive, we proved as forensic medicine that he was buried while he was alive, then the Western media and ambassadors came to find any loophole they believed to exist in the forensic reports or the official version.

Question: Like what?

Answer: There were two groups of martyrs, a group of martyrs was present in the main building, which is the security detachment, and a group of martyrs was in the post office. After those who were in the post office were killed, their bodies were thrown in the Orontes River, the second group of martyrs, knowing that field executions took place within a short period, within an hour or two, they tried to say that this group was killed at a different period from the group of the main detachment, we did a scientific analysis for them and explained to them the subject of decay, when (the body) inside the water how (decay) slows down due to lack of oxygen and the presence of moisture and when we get the body out of the water how the decaying accelerates tremendously and the phenomenon of the so-called black head appears, where the head of the body appears blackened, that is why we call this phenomenon in forensics is called the Black Head, I explained this to them carefully, I told them that if the body is not examined immediately after being extracted from the water it gives an enormous septic appearance, if the forensics doctor is not very accurate it is impossible to distinguish the time of sepsis. We explained it to them fully.

Question: Was this explanation given directly to…?

Answer: Directly to the media and the ambassadors present. Even a reporter for a station transmits my explanation of the topic and says that, according to what this doctor says, the official version seems authentic, so the media station changes the reporter.

Question: Was it a Gulf (GCC) station?

Answer: It was a Gulf station. Imagine, after I confronted them with science, thank God, they could not provide any response, the narrative became true because we speak science and we have no relationship with politics.

Question: The international committees that came specifically for the Jisr al-Shughur incident, did it interfere, or tried to know anything at that point?

Answer: This issue was the largest massacre that took place in the history of modern Syria, a huge number of martyrs, a way of killing gruesome, abuse of corpses, and the topic that deserved to be highlighted. When forensic medicine explained and clarified the matter, they did not follow up on this issue, why? Because they knew that the topic condemned the other team. Had the forensics failed at that time, they would have formed 100 committees, but when forensic medicine could explain exactly how the issue happened, they had no choice but to turn the page, they had no choice.

After the break:

I asked the executive authorities to provide us with a vegetable cooling truck. They sent me a 16-meter vegetable cooling truck to preserve the bodies in, we were running the truck on diesel because there was no electricity.

Manifestations that appear on a corpse after decaying may confuse by a non-forensic specialist, particularly with the subject of bruising.

Part Two:

When the Hamzah al-Khatib incident occurred, the forensic doctor explained, but there was no echo of what he said, they spoke of bruises while it was decaying.

The story of Hamza Al-Khatib is impressive: he read decaying but said it was bruises. The testes are swollen due to decaying, and the penis was no longer visible, so they said that the penis was cut.

Forensic medicine and you will see the photos soon, showing that the cause of death is a gunshot, the entry nozzles are clear and the exit nozzles are clear.

Indeed, he was shot because they were defending the housing compound of the (officers). The photos show you three gunshot entries and the penis is intact, nothing wrong with it.

We read the situation from the corpses that come to us.

The future of our lives from corpses?

Exactly, when you see at the beginning of events this is kind of torture on the corpses, you see the killing methods that were used, you realize that what’s coming is very dangerous.

– Start with ‘in the name of God’..

– Terrorist activist: In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Another martyr of freedom from the city of Giza in the governorate of Daraa, whose name is Hamza Ali Al-Khatib, age 13. He went out on the Friday of Anger to lift the siege on the people of Daraa. He was arrested at Sidon Housings (compound) and tortured in the most heinous way, looking at the traces of torture.

When the incident of Hamzah Al-Khatib happened, people were refusing to listen, unfortunately, I say that with the utmost frankness. People were refusing to listen to any science or whatever. The people were mobilized (by media), forensic medicine at the time spoke, but there was no echo of what it said, there was doubting the narration presented by forensic medicine which is the true narrative, the people now must listen and must know. They said about the presence of bruises while they were manifestations of sepsis, if time permits, we will display the pictures and explain a scientific explanation on this topic.

Terrorist Activist: This is a bullet in the right arm, which penetrated his arm from this side and exited from here and entered his chest, a shot in his abdomen, and another shot on the left side symmetrically with the right side exited from the outside side and entered from the inner side to his chest again.

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad, Head of the Forensic Medicine Center in Homs: The story of Hamza Al-Khatib is impressive: he read decaying but said it was bruises. The testes are swollen due to decaying, and the penis shrank and was no longer visible, so they said that the penis was cut, because there are pre-existing mentalities and their doctor did not have good prospects. You also remember the story of The Hirak, but the doctor there was a professional, in the story of The Hirak was electrocuted and he altered it.

Fortunately, we have the pictures from the start in the story of Hamzah Al-Khatib, and everything is clear. His body had nothing, no bruise, no beating, 3 gunshots, no one denied that he was shot because they were defending the housing compound. The photos show 3 gunshots and the penis is intact. It means that the facts were then altered.

Terrorist activist: and a shot at the top in his chest, and look at the bruises in his face with the broken neck, and look at the bruises on his right leg.

At the beginning of the war, people did not want to hear, or a group of people refused to listen at all, did not want to listen to the voice of truth, the voice of justice, wanted to walk behind what you expected or wanted. The western media had a very big role, and the Arab and Gulf media in particular, had a very big role in mobilizing and inciting people.

What did forensics do? initially, it was said that Hamzah Al-Khatib’s body had been mutilated, tortured, even severed its male penis. Forensic medicine, as you will see with pictures a little later it turns out that the cause of death was gunshots, the entry holes are clear and opposite the exit holes. It shows there was no torture on his body, even the subject of the cutting of the penis, people suspected what they thought was bruising on his body, this was decaying. Decaying, the degradation that took place gives a bruising-like appearance and any specialist in the field of forensic medicine and criminal science can distinguish that, the subject isn’t a debate, the case is scientifically clear. As for age, they said gave an age and forensic medicine estimated another age. The role of forensic medicine was very crucial in this case.

Terrorist activist: They did not stop with this amount of torture, but cut off his penis, then shot him, look at him without penis, they cut off his penis. Date May 25, 2011, on Wednesday.

Question: In the matter of determining age in the case of Hamza Al-Khatib, and in general, how is it done?

Answer: There are several criteria that forensic medicine uses through the study of orthopedics, radiographs in particular for the left hand wrist, the examination of teeth, and we have included this topic as a very important study: forensic dentistry. Under 21 years old, I can say that (forensic medicine) gives very credible and reliable results, after the age of 21, the margin of suspicion becomes between 6 months to a year.

Question: It was said that Hamza Al-Khatib was 13 years old?

Answer: Forensics has proved he was three years older than this.

Question: In the case of a corpse, the images that spread about inflation that the corpse is swollen …?

Answer: This is a natural process and natural development of the septic state that occurs. What happened is that after the corpse was kept in Tishreen Military Hospital for a period of about 20 days, it was transferred to the National Daraa Hospital, of course, the cooling was not appropriate, for that decay increased and accelerated.

Manifestations that appear on the body at the time of sepsis may be suspected by a non-specialist, particularly with the subject of bruising. Forensic medicine spoke and explained it fully. You will see the pictures when the body arrived. There was no mutilation or torture of the deceased, exactly. Here, the forensic role was decisive and essential, but as I told you at that time the problem was that people refused to listen, in short.

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad, Head of the Forensic Medicine Center in Homs: I do not hide from you that a large number of forensic doctors were threatened, another section sat at home, a number of them were afraid, and a number that stopped appearing on the media, and even I was one of these, this is first, secondly I was one those who spoke on some shows about media misinformation, but we were stifled by the media and no one heard us. It was in vain. We spoke and tried to speak more, but we became in our media outlets talking to each other. We are the people convinced that there is a conspiracy against the country. That is why our role was weak.

Question: From the Arab committees that came, and they came to Homs in particular, did they not meet you? Didn’t try to contact you?

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad, Head of the Forensic Medicine Center in Homs: They met us and I think that Al-Dabi, the head of the delegation, gave positive indications because he came to us and we presented him with the facts, and the period during which Al-Dabi visited us was the car bomb that exploded at the Military Medical Services Est. on the street of Al-Jajah Restaurant and Khaled Bin Al-Waleed School and we see the files, there was a car that exploded, they brought us the car to the Forensic Medicine, and it is well documented, they brought the car thinking it was for a suicide bomber, but when we discovered the corpse at the morgue we discovered that there were circular bruises on the hand that was found and on the feet, and we saw the electronic board in his viscera, and there were forceps placed on the penis for torture by blocking urine to produce psychological pressure, this is known as a method of torture that is cut urine by attaching the urethra or placing forceps.

We found that this person previously had a previous traffic accident and as a result of the fixative device placed in the vertebrae and his story, we were able to identify that this person was kidnapped 3 days ago and he is a known person. This person was kidnapped and after a while he was put in the car. The car was booby-trapped and directed towards the headquarters of the Military and Police Medical Services in that area. It seems that when this person came out knowing that he was booby-trapped, thought about where to go and decided to go to the security forces, he will not go to his family to save him, they were meanwhile planning to detonate the car remotely, and during that time the existing witness also spoke and then we analyzed what happened: When the car arrived at the military service building, the guard came to see the car because nobody was going in that street, at the moment the soldier came to him, the person returned the car to the back and after he returned about 20 meters, the car exploded, they felt that he was retreating and this person knew that he will be detonated and he didn’t want to harm the soldier so he drove backward, the material damage was little, he was the only person killed.

At that time we wanted to explain openly to the media what happened, and then it was decided after the recording of the episode that we might teach people this way so we do not want it to be repeated that a person is kidnapped and booby-trapped and tied to the car and sent. So that it does not get repeated after the episode was recorded the decision was made not to be shown to the media and I showed it to al-Dabbi in those days, he asked me for documents, I told him that I need official permission to give it to you…

Question: Dabbi’s report was unexpectedly positive…

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad, head of the Forensic Medicine Center in Homs: His report was positive because I took him down to the forensic morgue and showed him the bodies during that period, and I have the pictures, how a person was killed and only the meat was removed from his face and the top of his chest with the knife after death. We showed him pictures that I tell you about how he was tied, how he was covering his eyes, how he was slaughtered. Then they used to master slaughtering, we used to see slaughtering from the front, and then we see slaughtering taking place from the back…

Question: What is the difference?

Answer: The difference between them is that those who are slaughtered from the front die quickly, while those who are slaughtered from the back remain half an hour until they die because they are bleeding slowly … We started thinking why? We got the idea because some people have a habit that they want the blood of the carcass to be kept inside. Some people slaughter the carcass, the sheep or the like, they slaughter them from the back and in this way the bleeding is slow and the blood remains inside the carcass – the animal, and this is used as a method of cheating sometimes to increase the weight. The aim was torture. We used to see the victims slaughtered and then we saw that the hair of his forehead was shaved or his eyebrows had been shaved, why? Because the person who slaughters him tortures him, shaves his hair and shaves his eyebrows, and then he slays him. All these aspects, including beheadings…

Question: In what way are heads cut with a sword or slaughtered?

Answer: No, with the knife, it is clear that it was with the knife and not with the sword, technically you need a very professional person to be able to cut off the head with one stroke, but when using the knife he needs to insert it between the vertebrae.

The method of slaughtering was with knives, not with a single stroke. We know this from the multiple wound lines on the neck.

Dr. Zahir Hajo, Director of the General Authority of Forensic Medicine in Syria: The era that spanned from March 2011 until March 2012 when the army entered Idlib, one of the most dangerous episodes that passed in the history of Idlib as a province and a city. There was a lot of kidnapping after the Jisr al-Shughur for all the civilians who were supporting the state. Every day we found the body of a person who had been field-executed after being tortured.

I remember from the unique cases that I saw a civilian accused of supporting the state, all the traces of torture studied in the forensic books that forensics faces and which we study in books and those that do not exist in the books are present on it exist, huge barbaric torture, I am surprised by his story, which can explain to you what this country went through, his wife to ensure that they will execute him, “guarantee that they will execute him” she paid a million Lira and sold everything she owned so they will stop torturing him. He suggested to his wife that they would release him when the ransom was paid, he agreed with them where he asked them, in order to get rid of torture, that they should execute him, kill him, they said that they would not execute him for free, until his wife paid the money they executed him and rid him of torture.

We used to examine all of these things as forensic medicine.

Question: His wife paid money to kill him to rid him of torture?

Answer: It could have been expected that they would release him, knowing that he agreed with him that he would die and end. This period was one of the most dangerous periods in Idlib’s history, and there was a tremendous presence of gunmen in the outskirts carrying out kidnappings and assassinations, at which time the Attorney General in Idlib was assassinated, Mr. Nidal Ghazal Allah, have mercy on him.

Terrorist Activists: These are the Shabbiha forces coming to Jisr al-Shughour from Idlib, June 5, 2011. Shabiha coming from Idlib. focus…

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad: Of course, it reached its peak in the tenth month of 2011. I think we have reached a high point in the matter of kidnapping and killing in this way.

Question: What was the effect of that if we wanted to talk about people, for example, when they inspect the bodies and you wanted to hand them over to their families?

Dr. Bassam Al-Muhammad: I understood your question. The problem reflected on us as a forensic medicine when the relatives come to collect the bodies, whether armed or martyrs, as a result of these kidnappings, the person who had lost a family member could not reach the National Hospital to identify the body and take it, and thus we faced accumulation of corpses, and we have other problems. People did not receive the bodies, so I asked to make cold rooms and then the cold rooms were not enough, then we asked to bring vegetable transport vehicles, and here a rumor emerged that we are collecting the bodies, that the state is collecting the bodies to take them from a place For the last, it wasn’t, we didn’t have electricity at the National Hospital, so I asked the executive authorities that I needed a vegetables cold truck so they sent me a 16-meter-long vegetable refrigerator to put the bodies in. We run it on diesel because there is no electricity so that the bodies do not rot and people come to identify them, after a while we found that one refrigerator is not enough, the rumor emerged here that we are collecting the bodies and transporting them from one place to another, but the truth is as I told you.

Question: Did you encounter problems with the parents with their different passions who could have heard stories and could even have for them even the subject of the autopsy have many social and religious caveats sometimes, did you face this type of problem whether related to the cause of death and how to explain it to the family or about the autopsy?

Answer: We did not resort to autopsy much because the apparent disclosure was sufficient and we were not looking for a known criminal and it was clear that it was a murder, we were very sympathetic for the relatives that we developed the procedures at the Forensic Medicine, it wasn’t logical to let the relatives go in to see all the bodies to identify theirs, so we photographed the bodies and displayed on the computer. When he identifies his body, we bring it up to see it in real and recognizes it formally, because the number of bodies could have shocked the people, so we automated the process in order to deliver the bodies.

Unfortunately, the large numbers of dead bodies remained unknown because people were unable to reach us, and the areas were separated from each other in Homs. We tried, in some ways, to send CDs to identify the missing, within our capabilities. However, there remained unknown bodies that we, unfortunately, cannot identify.

Question: Was it buried later?

Answer: All the bodies in Homs were buried in a systematic way, according to an initiative that we, the forensic medicine, in cooperation with the Burial Office, the Religious Endowments Ministry, the security authorities, the governorate, and the civil defense. Everything was documented, we took pictures of the bodies, and the unknown bodies which weren’t recognizable from the pictures we took DNA samples from it, code was placed on the body and there was a unified code from the beginning of the crisis to the end of it. You know that we, as a health care sector, do not care about shrouds, nylon, and the like, they brought us the coffin, we wrapped the body, Civil Defense transports it, prayers were held for it under the supervision of Endowments and buried in cemeteries, 6 graveyards were approved in Homs because the numbers were large, bodies were buried orderly, each in a grave alone, and for this moment when someone reviews us to identify a dead body, we can take them to the grave of the body.

We made sure that there were no mass graves, even when Homs was liberated, we entered the old Homs district and searched the graveyards, whether the graves were collective, we took samples and were documented and buried in a regular way, and even the irregular graves that were in the gardens of homes, shelters or rooftops were re-dug out and sent to regular graves so that residents can return to live in their homes.

Question: Have you reached a stage, I do not want to call it a disability, but the numbers of dead bodies in it were beyond your capacity or your ability to absorb all this number, not only in terms of location but also the ability to analyze all the data?

Answer: What happened with us and as you know that laws are not established for crises, laws are put in place for a stable social life, the law was that for an (unidentified) body to be buried that it should be kept for a month and we must get the approval of the Public Prosecutor, we continued with this, but the large number of corpses continued to come and approached a thousand corpses with us, here as forensic doctors as a result of our reading of the reality and the summer began, so we submitted a request to the Attorney General l and explained to him the situation that continuing with this process would threaten an environmental disaster, he asked us to act according to the principles that allow the identification of corpses later in order to avoid environmental disasters, we were collecting the bodies, putting them in the (vegetable cold) trucks, but 4 freezers were sufficient for some time, then what?

We must bury them. Before the burial process, we performed photo documentation of all the dead bodies, as I told you, with number codes, wrap them in shrouds them and send them to the graves, because in that period in October we reached a peak in the numbers of unidentified bodies, we absorbed this number by collecting the bodies in refrigerators and vegetable transport vehicles that were used for this purpose, during which time we were told that we were collecting bodies but we were absorbing the shock. After this period, we started the natural process, to preserve the (body’s decency) you need to bury it according to the principles that preserve human dignity and at least preserve the religious duties that a person must perform towards the deceased person, and this thing was done at the governorate level in cooperation with all the competent authorities.

A person must read well in order to see what will happen to him in the future. We read from the corpses that reach us, we read the situation from the corpses that reach us.

Question: The future of our lives are from corpses?

Answer: Exactly, when we see what happened with this body, we simulate what happened with it, we find that the situation is very dangerous. When you see this type of torture on the body at the beginning of events, you see the killing methods that happen, you know the next is very dangerous.

End of the English translation transcript,

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IN VIDEO: AL-QAEDA-LINKED MILITANTS ‘DEMOCRATICALLY’ PROTEST AGAINST RUSSIAN-TURKISH PATROLS ALONG M4


Members of Ansar al-Islam (an al-Qaeda-linked militant group created in Iraqi Kurdistan in 2001 and then expanded to Syria) joined the ‘peaceful democratic protest’ against the joint Russian-Turkish patrol along the M4 highway. Members of the group are participating in the sit in on the highway under their democratic jihad banner and sign nashid.
There is nothing strange here. They are just ordinary representatives of the ‘moderate opposition’ in Idlib.
Members of jihadist group Ansar al-Islam sit on the M4 highway in northwest Syria and sing a nasheed in a bid to block joint Turkish-Russian patrols

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By the way, somebody also stole a mobile phone of a Turkish soldider during the encounter with a Turkish military column on the M4 highway on March 15. The Turkish miltiary column (with tanks!) were moving through a ‘demoratic protest’ to particiapte with a joint patrol with the Russian Military Police when this happened.

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GREAT IDLIB REBRANDING AND TURKISH VICTORIES OVER RUSSIAN AIR DEFENSE

South Front

Terrorist groups operating in Idlib are preparing for a new rebranding under Turkish patronage. According to Syrian sources, Hayat Tarir al-Sham (formerly the official Syrian branch of al-Qaeda), the Turkistan Islamic Party (an al-Qaeda-linked group), the National Front for Liberation (a coalition of Turkish proxies friendly to al-Qaeda) and several smaller groups are going to create a united command center and even declare a formal merger.

The idea is to shuffle well-known al-Qaeda terrorists with their supposedly moderate Turkish-backed counterparts, and give them a new name and logo. So, Ankara will have a formal reason to claim that there are no ‘terrorists’ in Idlib and the current situation in the region fully corresponds with the agreements reached with Iran and Russia. These agreements exclude terrorist organizations, which control up to 90% of the militant-held part of Greater Idlib, from the ceasefire and allow military actions against them. The issue is that the same agreements declare that Turkey must separate so-called ‘moderate rebels’ from ‘terrorists’. This is hardly possible because there is little difference between them. Therefore, the Turkish leadership opted to unite them painting them as the ‘moderate opposition’ once again violating the word and spirit of the de-escalation agreements.

Earlier in the conflict, various terrorist groups already employed this approach. For example, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham was previously known as Jabhat Fateh al-Sham and Jabhat al-Nusra. The group changed its name in an attempt to distance itself from al-Qaeda and present itself as part of the moderate opposition that is brutally oppressed by the Assad regime, Iran and Russia. This plan failed because terrorists, even if they change their flag and wear new hats, remain terrorists and continue acting like terrorists.

On March 15, Turkish and Russian forces are set to start conducting joint patrols along the agreed security corridor on the M4 highway in southern Idlib. On March 10, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that the patrols will start from the settlement of Trumba – 2 km west of Saraqib – to the settlement of Ain al-Havr. Additionally, Cavusoglu repeated threats that his country will attack Syrian forces if they do not comply with the ceasefire. How this ceasefire will survive with no real anti-terrorist fight in Idlib remains another big secret. According to pro-Turkish sources, the Turkish Army and its proxies will control the part of the security corridor north of the M4, while the Russians will present south of the highway. However, so far, there have been no indications that Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other terrorist groups are withdrawing means and forces from the area. This situation creates an apparent pretext for a military escalation.

The public behavior of the Turkish leadership and Turkish media outlets does not help to de-escalate the situation either. Since March 5, Ankara has been doing its best to paint the failed Operation Spring Shield as a major victory. After tiring the audience out with unrealistic numbers of supposed Syrian Army casualties, Turkey moved on to mocking the military capabilities of the Russian air defense systems. On March 10, Turkish President Recep Tayip Erdogan claimed that his forces had destroyed 8 Pantsir air defense systems in the Idlib zone. This number goes contrary to data provided by the Turkish Defense Ministry which claimed that 8 air defense systems of various types were destroyed during Operation Spring Shield. It seems that the amount of supposedly destroyed military equipment of the Syrian Armed Forces continues to grow.

The Russian Defense Ministry called Erdogan’s claims “more than overestimation” and noted that apparently the data, which the Turkish leader receives about the results of the operation,  is not very precise. The military said that a total of 4 Pantsir systems were deployed in Idlib and only 2 of them were damaged. It recalled that most of the Syrian air defense means and measures are deployed in the area of the country’s capital, Damascus.

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Erdogan Loses the Battle, But the War Is Far from Over

THE SAKER • MARCH 5, 2020


New Map of Idlib with Security Corridor

Following 6 hours of grueling negotiations, including direct negotiations between Putin and Erdogan, the parties have finally agreed to the following:

  1. A ceasefire will begin at midnight.
  2. Russia and Turkey will jointly patrol the M4 highway (M5 now belongs to Damascus). A 6km buffer zone will have to be created and enforced on each side of M4 by the March 15th (see map above)
  3. Both parties have reaffirmed their commitment to Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
  4. Both parties have reaffirmed their commitment to a create the conditions for a return of the refugees.
  5. Both parties have reaffirmed that this conflict as no military solution.

Furthermore, there was a lot of things which were left unsaid, but understood by all:

  1. The recent military gains of the Syrian military will not be disputed and otherwise challenged. The new line of contact has now become official.
  2. Russia and Syria will continue to fight all the organizations which the UNSC has declared “terrorist” (al-Nusra, al-Qaeda, and all their franchises irrespective of any “rebranding”).
  3. Moscow remains as committed to the protection of the legitimate Syrian government as ever.

From the above we can also deduce the following:

  1. Erdogan’s Blitzkrieg has failed. Initially, the Turkish drones inflicted major damage on the Syrian forces, but the latter adapted extremely quickly which resulted in what the Russians jokingly referred to as “dronopad” which can roughly be translated as “dronerain”.
  2. The Turks were clearly shocked by the Russian decision to bomb a Turkish battalion. What apparently happened is this: two Syrian Su-22 (old Soviet aircraft) bombed the convoy to force it to stop, then a pair of Russian Su-34 (the most modern Russian all-weather supersonic medium-range fighter-bomber/strike aircraft) dropped heavy ordinance on the convoy and surrounding buildings killing scores of Turkish special forces). Both sides decided to “blame” the Syrians, but they don’t fly Su-34, and everybody knows that.
  3. Erdogan understood that he either had to double down or declare victory and leave. He wisely chose the latter, at least as a temporary measure.
  4. Neither NATO nor the EU showed any signs of wanting to join Turkey’s war on Syria (because that is what we are really dealing with here), and neither did the US. Since I cannot call that decision “wise” (there is no wisdom of any kind left in western regimes), I will call it simply “prudent” as Russia was not about to allow Turkey to invade Syria.
  5. Iran, Hezbollah, and Libya all declared their willingness to fight the Turks for as long as needed and anywhere where needed.

In spite of these developments, it is pretty clear that internal Turkish politics will continue to force Erdogan to engage in what is politely called “neo-Ottoman” policies aka phantom pains for a lost empire. The obvious solution for Russia is to further arm the Syrians, especially with modernized versions of the Pantsir SAMs which have proven very effective against drones, MLRS rockets and even mortars.

The main Syrian problem is a lack of numbers. Until more forces are equipped, trained, deployed and engaged, the Russians need to provide a much stronger air defense capabilities to Syria. The Syrians have done miracles with old, frankly outdated, Soviet equipment (which, considering its age and lack of proper maintenance, has performed superbly), but now they need much better Russian gear to defend not only against Turkey, but also against the Axis of Kindness (US+Israel+KSA).

Furthermore, it is my opinion that the Russian task force in Khmeimim and Tartus is too big and not well balanced. Khmeimin needs many more Su-25SM3 and a few more Su-35S/Su-30SM to protect them. The naval base at Tartus lacks ASW capabilities, as does much of the Russian naval task force in the eastern Mediterranean. And while the Russian Navy has a number of ships with “Kalibr” cruise missiles onboard, their numbers are, again, inadequate, which means that the Russian Aerospace Forces need to deploy as many Kalibr-capable aircraft in southern Russia as possible. Both Tartus and Khmeimim are pretty close to the Idlib province (that is also were the “good terrorist” tried to strike Russian forces from which, thanks to the successful Syrian offensive, they now cannot do anymore!). This suggests to me that Russia ought to declare a larger exclusive air control zone over both of this locations, and beef up the numbers of missiles and launchers the Russian air defenses will have to enforce it.

Finally, I think that Erdogan has outlived his utility for Russia (and for Turkey, for that matter!). He clearly is a loose cannon which, according to some rumors, even the Turkish public opinion is getting fed up with. Russia should not neglect that public opinion. Then there are the Libyans, “Field Marshal” Khalifa Belqasim Haftar, whose forces seems to have been extremely successful against the Turkish forces in Libya. The Russians are, quietly, supporting Haftar who, while not exactly an ideal ally for Russia, can prove useful. What the Russians need to do next is to explain two things to Erdogan and his ministers:

  1. If you attack again in Syria, you will be defeated, possibly worse than the first time around
  2. If you mess with our geostrategic interests, we will mess with yours

The only party which the Russians should never arm are the Kurds, who are even more unreliable than Erdogan and who are basically an Israeli asset to destabilize Turkey, Iraq, Syria and Iran. Russia should, however, talk to the Kurds (all factions) and convince them to accept a large cultural autonomy inside Syria, Iraq and Iran. Turkey could be added to this list, but only once a trustworthy government comes to power in Ankara. Under no circumstances should Russia arm the Kurds.

Right now, the best Russian ally in the region is Syria. This is the country which Russia needs to make safe by creating a truly modern air defense network. The Russians have already done a lot towards this goal, including integrating their combat management and EW systems, but that is not enough. While Russian aid and Syrian skills have forced the Israelis to conduct mostly symbolic and ineffective air strikes, often with missiles shot from outside the Syrian airspace, and while many (most) Israeli missiles were destroyed by the Syrian air defenses, it is pretty clear that both the Turks and the Israelis feel that if they launch missiles from long distance they are relatively safe. That perception needs to be changed, not only to force the Turks and the Israelis to shoot from even further and accept even more losses, but also to show the US, NATO and Europe that the Syrian air defenses are capable of making anything short of a massive attack pointless (and a massive attack costly).

We should also note that the Turkish propaganda machine has been very effective. Yes, a lot of what they said was self-evidently “feelgood” nonsense (thousands of dead Syrians, hundred of tanks, etc.) , but their footage of a Turkish drone striking a Pantsir in Libya did, at least initially, impress those who don’t understand air defense warfare (destroying a single isolated first-generation Pantsir is not that hard, especially from right above it, but destroying a Pantsir position in which launchers protect each other is quite different. And if that Pantsir position is protected “below” (AA+MANPADS) and “above” (medium to long range SAMs), then this becomes extremely difficult).

This war is not over and it won’t be until Erdogan is removed from power. Frankly, Russia needs a stable and trustworthy partner on her southern border, and that won’t happen until the Turks ditch Erdogan. The problem here is that God only knows who might succeed him, should the Gulenists seize power, that will not be good for Russia either.

And here we come back to the murder of General Suleimani. Frankly, the Iranians are spot on: the two things which made the Middle-East into the bloody mess it has been for decades are 1) Israel and 2) the US. The end goal for the former is a one-state solution, whether accepted or imposed. The intermediate goal ought to be to get the US out of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and, possibly, Turkey. Erdogan is crazy and desperate enough (not to mention vengeful) to at least bring this intermediate goal one step closer by alienating the US and NATO. So the Russian game plan ought to be obvious: first, use military means to “contain Erdogan inside Turkey” and, next, engage in long term efforts to prepare for a post-Erdogan Turkey. Then let the SOB destroy himself.

I don’t believe that peace is possible between a secular Syria and a Takfiri-backing Turkey. And I sure don’t believe that the Takfiris can be remolded into any kind of “democratic opposition”. Thus the real end-goal for Russia and Syria will always be military victory, not “peace” (assuming that concept of “peace with the Takfiris” makes any sense at all, which it doesn’t). The Russians know that, even if they won’t admit it.

For the time being, what we see is the first phase of the Turkey-Syria war ending and for the next couple of weeks we shall see a transition into some other phase which will probably be one in which, surprise surprise, the Turks fail to remove all the Takfiri nutcases from Idlib which will then give Syria and Russia a legal reason to take direct action again. In theory, at least, Erdogan could decide to pour the Turkish armed forces across the border, but the closer they will get to Khmeimim and/or Tartus, the more dangerous the stakes for Turkey and for Erdogan personally.

The key to success for the Axis of Resistance is to make Syria too tough to crack. I hope that Russia, Iran, Syria and Iraq will continue to work together, hopefully with Chinese aid, to create such a Syria.

Russia, Turkey Intend to Ease Tensions ‘On Ground’ in Syria: Moscow

February 29, 2020

Russian Foreign Ministry said Moscow and Ankara have confirmed their commitment to decreasing tensions on the ground in the fight against terrorism in Syria during the last round of consultations in the Turkish capital.

“Both sides confirmed their determination to ease tensions ‘on the ground’ in the process of continuing fighting terrorists, designated as such by the UN Security Council, as well as to defend the civilian population both within and outside the [Idlib] de-escalation zone and provide urgent humanitarian assistance to all who need it,” the ministry said in a statement.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Turkey was unable to fulfil several key commitments to solve the problems around Syria’s Idlib province.

In particular, Ankara failed to separate the armed opposition, which is ready for dialogue with the government in the framework of the political process, from terrorists.

According to the Russian-Turkish memorandum, agreed upon by Presidents Putin and Erdogan in September 2018, the status quo for the presence of the Turkish military was agreed to be maintained, provided that all terrorist radical groups withdrew from the Idlib de-escalation zone by 15 October 2018.

It was also stipulated that “effective measures need to be taken to ensure a stable cessation of hostilities” within the borders of this zone. Clause 7 of the memorandum called for joint Russian-Turkish patrols in the area.

Source: Sputnik

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TURKISH-LED FORCES ARE FLEEING FROM SOUTHERN IDLIB. KAFR NUBL IS IN HANDS OF SYRIAN ARMY (MAP UPDATE)

ٍSouth Front

The tactical success of the Turkish Army and Turkish-backed al-Qaeda groups in Nayrab in eastern Idlib turned to be a total disaster for Turkish-led forces in the southern part of the province.

Following the large gains on February 24, on February 25 Syrian government troops liberated the villages of Hass, Kafr Nabl, Bisaqla, Ba’rabu, Qiratah, Sahab, Qa’uri and Deir Sunbol. Kafr Nabl was the main strong point of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) in this part of the frontline. Its fall marks the collapse of the group’s defense in the area.

According to pro-government sources, in the coming days Syrian troops are planning to clear the area of Zawiyah Mountain and shorten the frontline on the administrative border between the provinces of Idlib and Lattakia. When this is done, the Syrian Army and its allies will be able to advance further towards the M4 highway.

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MEE: UK Gov’t’s Covert Propaganda Campaign in Syria

By Staff, MEE

The British government covertly established a network of citizen journalists across Syria during the early years of the country’s war in an attempt to shape perceptions of the conflict, frequently recruiting people who were unaware that they were being directed from London.

A number of leaked documents seen by Middle East Eye show how the propaganda initiative began in 2012 and gathered pace the following year, shortly after the UK parliament refused to authorize British military action in Syria.

Drawing upon British, American and Canadian funding, UK government contractors set up offices in Istanbul and Amman, where they hired members of the Syrian diaspora, who in turn recruited citizen journalists inside Syria.

These journalists, many of them young, were commissioned to produce TV footage, radio programs, social media, posters, magazines and even children’s comics.

While many Syrians turned spontaneously to media activism from the start of the war, the documents describe the way in which the British government sought to guide some of their output, seeing citizen journalism as a way of covertly influencing Syrian audiences.

The papers also make clear that those people who were recruited were often unaware that they were part of a British propaganda initiative.

Some of those who were recruited have defended their involvement, however, saying that they were reliant on western support in their efforts to counter pro-government reporting in Syrian state media, and in Iranian and Russian-backed media.

At a time when the last opposition-held enclave in Idlib province is under assault by pro-government forces, they questioned whether western countries could have contributed more material support to moderate rebels.

Some Syrian journalists complained that western support for their work was decreasing even as it was most needed.

The documents were drawn up as blueprints for the initiative by an anthropologist working in counter-terrorism at the foreign office in London. They were issued in late 2014 to a small number of communications companies that were invited to bid for three contracts to deliver the work.

The documents show that the over-arching aim of the citizen journalism project – and a series of interlinked British propaganda initiatives – was to promote the UK’s strategic interests in Syria and the Middle East.

These are defined in the leaked papers as “a more stable and democratic Syria that better meets the needs and aspirations of its people”, support for a political solution to the conflict, the alleviation of humanitarian suffering, and enhanced UK security.

As well as developing grassroots journalism aligned with British government values, the UK and other western governments were at the same time attempting to build civil society in areas controlled by some of Assad’s opponents, financing and training police forces and civil defense teams.

The anthropologist’s blueprint makes clear that this was being done not just to help maintain law and order and provide humanitarian assistance, but “to build confidence in a future Syria free from extremist rule”.

However, the documents acknowledge the risks to the young journalists who had unwittingly been co-opted by the British government.

The British government’s citizen journalism project was part of a three-pronged propaganda initiative that was developed in London and was, according to the documents, intended to “have a synergistic effect”.

The first strand, named Syrian Identity, sought to “unite Syrians through positive affirmation of common cultures and practices and to restore trust between neighbors, while illustrating Syrians’ strength in numbers,” according to the blueprint.

The documents explain that the second strand, called Free Syria, “seeks to build confidence in a future Syria free from extremist rule”.

It “amplifies the work of the ‘free’ police, civil defense teams and wider public service provision and broader developments in civil society and seeks to unite the moderate opposition (civil and armed) to work for a common future”.

The third, known as Undermine, “seeks to degrade the effectiveness of VE [violent extremist] networks in Syria by undermining the credibility of VE narratives and actors and isolating VE organizations from the populace.”

The document goes on, using a different acronym for IS: “ISIL is an explicit and named focus, Al Nusra Front (due to its current popularity within Syria) is addressed indirectly through its behavior.

“The purpose of the project to directly ‘Undermine’ (degrading the effectiveness of) VE networks in Syria through the delivery of media product, the emboldening and empowering of moderate voices, and supporting community coalescence around a vision of a tolerant, pluralist Syria. Ultimately, active Syrian rejection of VE is the requirement.”

The documents add that the research underpinning the initiative “will need to be able to draw upon open source material, jihadist discourse and, in particular, a network of assets inside Syria”.

Individuals familiar with the project say that around nine companies were invited to bid for the contracts. They included a number of firms established by former British diplomats, intelligence officers and army officers.

Although the contracts were awarded by the UK’s foreign office, they were managed by the country’s Ministry of Defense, and sometimes by military intelligence officers.

These companies set up offices in Amman, Istanbul and, for a period, at Reyhanli in southeast Turkey. From here they would employ Syrians who would in turn recruit citizen journalists inside Syria, who were under the impression that they were working for the media offices of Syrian opposition groups.

Meanwhile, other leaked documents seen by MEE show that the British government had awarded contracts to communications companies, which selected and trained opposition spokespeople, ran press offices that operated 24 hours a day, and developed opposition social media accounts.

British staff running these offices were told that their Syrian employees were permitted to talk to British journalists – as spokespeople for the Syrian opposition – but only after receiving clearance from officials at the British consulate in Istanbul.

One of the responsibilities of the press offices set up covertly by the British government under the terms of these contracts was to “maintain an effective network of correspondents/stringers inside Syria to report on MAO [moderate armed opposition] activity”.

In this way, the British government was able to exert behind-the-scenes influence over conversations that the UK media was having with individuals who presented themselves as Syrian opposition representatives.

People involved with the operation say that some prominent British journalists visiting Istanbul would be introduced to Syrians acting as opposition spokespeople, who had been prepared for the encounter by British handlers.

They say they would brief the Syrians before the meeting, and avoid any face-to-face contact with the visiting journalists themselves.

TURKISH SULTAN-IN-CHIEF ON GUARD FOR AL-QAEDA IN IDLIB

South Front

Tensions between the United States and Russia are growing in northeastern Syria. On February 19, a video appeared online showing how an armored vehicle of the U.S. military was pushing a vehicle of the Russian Military Police off a road. The US move endangered a civilian standing near the road. If he had not run away in time, he would have been killed by the vehicle. The incident reportedly took place to the east of the city of al-Qamishli in the northern al-Hasakah countryside.

Russian air defense forces repelled a drone and missile attack on the Hmeimim airbase in the province of Latakia. Pro-government sources reported that the attack was carried out from the southern part of the Idlib de-escalation zone, where militants are still present.

On February 19, Turkish Sultan-in-Chief Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that the Turkish military has finished preparations for an operation against the Syrian Army in Greater Idlib, and its start is inevitable because Syrian troops are not planning to withdraw from the recently liberated areas. On the same day, Turkey continued deployment of additional troops and equipment to the region, as well as directly to the frontline. The frontline areas where the Turkish military presence is especially strong is the eastern countryside of Idlib city and the town of Atarib. Turkish media outlets are enthusiastically drawing maps of a possible Turkish aggression.

Pro-Turkish sources claim that the operation in Idlib will not only help to rescue supposed civilians from the regime offensive, but to separate the so-called moderate opposition from terrorists. According to these claims, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, the Turkistan Islamic Party and other al-Qaeda-linked groups, which make up over 80% of Idlib militants, will be disbanded. It would be interesting to see how Ankara would go about disbanding and disarming the forces that it has been supplying with weapons and supporting so much. Do Turkish media outlets really expect their audience to believe that from one moment to the next tens of thousands of battle-hardened al-Qaeda members are going to abandon their ideology and become florists or Instagram bloggers?

MAP COMPARISON: 

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The Progress for the Battle for Idlib

February 07, 2020

By Blake Archer Williams for the Vineyard of the Saker

The Syrian government’s last push to get rid of foreign and domestic terrorists from its soil started on December 19th, and has met with great success. Since then, over 1,200 square kilometers of territory have been liberated.

The main frontline of the war is currently to the area southeast of Idlib city, with gains having taken place as follows:

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Sarāqīb, which is shown as having been surrounded in the above map, has been liberated, as have Sarmīn, Afs, Duweir, Talafa, and Zammār:

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Here is a picture of a sign posted outside Safāqīb by the Takfiri terrorists. It says: “Shī’a Beware” (although the term it uses for the Shi’a is the pejorative term which the takfiris use (which unfortunately consists of many if not most Sunnis): rawāfed.

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The Syrian army will continue its march of liberation northwards. As can be seen in the second map, the next towns to the east and northeast of Idlib City are Binish, Fū‘a, and Kafraya. These small towns are mentioned in this short clip in which these takfiri terrorists have been captured vowing not to abandon Binish and threatening to kill the Shi’a of Fū‘a, and Kafraya:

Here is another video clip of the “democratic rebels” in Idlib teaching a child how to sing about the slaughter of Shi’as and Alawites while waving a knife and celebrating the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Here is the link to the thread by HadiNasrallah for those who want to learn more about this: https://twitter.com/HadiNasrallah/status/1038466799950589953

And here is an earlier clip showing the “moderate rebels” taunting a 12-year old boy before they cut his head off:

Here are some pictures of one of those “rebels”, Hamza Al Kateab, whose wife was given an award by the British equivalent of the Oscars for a propaganda film she made in support of these scum:

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Hamza Al Kateab wearing a tuxedo at BAFTA where his wife won an award for her propaganda film

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Hamza with child beheader Maayouf Abu Bahr

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Hamza again with Maayouf

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Maayouf & Friends before they beheaded 12 yr old Abdallah Issa

And now the US is petitioning the United Nations to help it and its Europoodle accomplices stop the Syrian Army from eradicating these “people”. You can’t make this stuff up: truth is stranger than fiction.

*

Meanwhile, in other news… encouraged by the success of the electoral campaign of a self-confessed cork-sucker in Iowa, Sultan Erdogan, one of the main sponsors of these terrorists, has decided to come clean:

D:\Arash\Pictures\Erdo.png

Syrian Army Cleaned the Strategic City of Maarat Numan from NATO Terrorists

January 28, 2020 Arabi Souri

Maarat al-Numan city is liberated from NATO terrorists by the Syrian Arab Army and its allies, the city is the largest city in the southern countryside of Idlib province.

After the fiercest clashes with all of NATO, all of the Gulfies, and all of the evil powers on Earth supporting the human garbage of Nusra Front and its affiliates, the Syrian Arab Army proved once again they are the masters of the fight against terror. The SAA managed to neutralize dozens of NATO terrorists in the last 24 hours.

The resumption of the military campaign to clean the province of Idlib and the countryside of Aleppo from terrorists came after the last ceasefire collapsed when once again the Turkish pariah Erdogan intentionally failed to commit to his own promises by separating foreign non-moderate terrorists forming the backbone of the ‘Syrian’ opposition from the moderate head-choppers of the same opposition.

Units of the SAA are combing the streets and allies block by block and apartment by apartment for remnants of terrorists and for explosives they usually plant in every corner of the places they infest to continue to cause maximum harm and suffering among the Syrian people after they leave.

Damascus – Aleppo International Highway aka M5 artery goes right through the city connecting the political capital and most populated city of Syria with the economic capital and powerhouse Aleppo.

Maarat Numan has been infested by NATO terrorists since October 2012 and ever since has been their launchpad to carry out their terrorist attacks against other towns and cities in addition to cutting off the international highway connecting Syria’s north with its south.

NATO countries and their international stooges have tried all their best to impede the military operation to clean Maarat Numan and the rest of Idlib from their terrorists, their terrorists intensified their indiscriminate bombing of the residential neighborhoods of Aleppo, which at the time of writing this report news are coming that the NATO Front (al-Qaeda Levan) terrorists left Al Rashideen 4th neighborhood in the city, and also some NATO ‘special forces’ have sabotaged Syrian undersea oil pipelines as a way to pressure the Syrian state and also to punish the Syrian people who are in dire need of every oil drop for their daily living needs.

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SYRIAN ARMY’S CREEPING OFFENSIVE ON IDLIB. NEVERENDING CEASEFIRES EXPLAINED

South Front

A new ceasefire in the Greater Idlib region of northwestern Syria started on January 12, at 00:01 local time. The ceasefire, once again brokered by Turkey and Russia, followed a series of successful advances by pro-government forces in southern Idlib. Just a few hours after start of the ceasefire, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly the official branch of al-Qaeda in Syria) and its supposedly ‘moderate’ counterparts shelled Aleppo city, targeting the districts of Shahba, al-Khalidiyah, al-Neil, al-Sabeel and Tishreen. At least 3 civilians were killed and 5 others – injured.

Despite this, the Syrian Army halted all of its offensive operations and air and artillery bombing campaigns against militants’ military infrastructure across Greater Idlib. Now, government troops open fire only in response to attacks by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and its allies. They, in coordination with the Russian Reconciliation Center, also opened three humanitarian corridors (Al-Hobait – in southern Idlib, Abu Duhur – in southeastern Idlid, and Al-Hadher – in southwestern Aleppo) allowing civilians to leave the militant-controlled areas. The Idlib ‘opposition’ reacted by establishing own checkpoints near the corridors and imposing an unofficial tax for every persons that want to leave.

The new ceasefire effort caused a strong negative reaction among supporters of a military solution of the Idlib militants question. They reasonably say that the peace cannot be achieved in this part of Syria as long as al-Qaeda-style groups like Hayat Tahrir al-Sham dominate there. So, if Turkish-backed ‘moderate rebels’ cannot separate from al-Qaeda, they should face a military operation. In own turn, supporters of Idlib armed groups claim the army, Russia and Iran were just scared by their military might or, another version, the ceasefire is just another form of aggression because it allows civilians to leave Idlib, thus removing ‘human shields’ from the area. However, it seems that all these are a part of the larger trend.

Since the establishment of the Idlib de-escalation zone in September 2018, there have been 3 notable army operations against radical militants:

  • The April-June 2019 offensive, when government troops liberated Kafr Nabudah town and a number of nearby villages in northwestern Hama;
  • The August offensive that led to the liberation of Khan Shaykhun and nearby areas in southern Idlib;
  • The November-December operation in southern Idlib in the framework of which around 30 villages and settlements were liberated, and the army deployed in a striking distance from Maarat al-Numan, another key militant stronghold on the M5 highway.

All of these operations ended and even were interrupted by a number of temporary ceasefires. In general, the loop looked the next way:

  • Turkey, Russia, Damascus and the Turkish-backed ‘opposition’ agree on de-escalation efforts and the separation of “terrorists” and “moderate rebels”;
  • “Moderate rebels” do not separate from “terrorists”. Attacks on army positions across the contact line continue. Leaders of Idlib militant groups claim that the ‘bloody Assad regime’ is terrified and vow to crush the regime and its supporters;
  • The army and the Russian Reconciliation Center open humanitarian corridors allowing civilians to leave Greater Idlib. Militants try to prevent this sabotaging the effort. Despite this, some people leave;
  • Government forces launch an offensive delivering a blow to militants and liberating a notable chunk of territory;
  • The ‘international community’ and mainstream media report about numerous atrocities of the army against forces of the young Idlib democracy. Turkey and Russia agree on another ceasefire. The situation repeats.

At the first look this approach looks contrary to a straight logic. It is hard to imagine that somebody believes that the real ceasefire and political settlement is possible with al-Qaeda as one of the key powerbrokers on the ground. Nonetheless, it leads to apparent results: more and more civilians are being evacuated from Idlib and the Syrian Army liberates more and more areas. During the December offensive, even Hayat Tahrir al-Sham supporters had a suspicious that something was going wrong. In these conditions the main question is that how many such ceasefires will be needed to get rid of all radicals in the region?

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The Caliphate Project, Made in America. Declassified U.S. Government Documents Confirm the US Supported the Creation of ISIS

By Washington’s Blog

Global Research, December 28, 2019

Washington’s Blog 24 May 2015

Global Research Editor’s Note:

First published in May 2015, this article reveals not only that the ISIS is a creation of US intelligence, it  also confirms that the Caliphate Project was designed in Washington.

See Screenshots Below from the title page as well as excerpts:

“… there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist Principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime …. ” (Washington Blog, see below)

October 26, 2019

Judicial Watch has – for many years – obtained sensitive U.S. government documents through freedom of information requests and lawsuits.

The government just produced documents to Judicial Watch in response to a freedom of information suit which show that the West has long supported ISIS.   The documents were written by the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency on August 12, 2012 … years before ISIS burst onto the world stage.

Here are screenshots from the documents. We have highlighted the relevant parts in yellow:

Why is this important? It shows that extreme Muslim terrorists – salafists, Muslims Brotherhood, and AQI (i.e. Al Qaeda in Iraq) – have always been the “major forces driving the insurgency in Syria.”

This verifies what the alternative media has been saying for years: there aren’t any moderate rebels in Syria (and see thisthis and this).

The newly-declassified document continues:

Yes, you read that correctly:

… there is the possibility of establishing a declared or undeclared Salafist Principality in eastern Syria (Hasaka and Der Zor), and this is exactly what the supporting powers to the opposition want, in order to isolate the Syrian regime ….

In other words, the powers supporting the Syrian opposition – the West, our Gulf allies, and Turkey wanted an Islamic caliphate in order to challenge Syrian president Assad.

Sure, top U.S. generals – and vice president Vice President Joe Biden – have said that America’s closest allies support ISIS.  And mainstream American media have called for direct support of ISIS.

But the declassified DIA documents show that the U.S. and the West supported ISIS at its inception … as a way to isolate the Syrian government.  And see this.

This is a big deal.  A former British Army and Metropolitan Police counter-terrorism intelligence officer and a former MI5 officer confirm that the newly-released documents are a smoking gun.

This is a train wreck long in the making.The original source of this article is Washington’s BlogCopyright © Washington’s BlogWashington’s Blog, 2019

Erdogan Recycles Terrorists from Syria to Libya and Idlib Front Update

December 26, 2019

Arabi Souri

Syrian Arab Army - Hasakah - Idlib - Turkey - Erdogan - Trump - Putin - Russia - USA

Libya is the next destination for the anti-Islamic Wahhabi and Muslim Brotherhood terrorists loyal to the Turkish pariah Erdogan, meanwhile, the Syrian Arab Army gives the terrorists 24 hours to leave Maraat Noman.

Erdogan is now shifting to North Africa, there’s oil and there’s a new task assigned to the Zionist stooge: Cut off the road for China, keep Europe under check, and weaken Russia in that part of the world.

Mad at the Russian President Putin who didn’t notify him of the swift Syrian Arab Army operation in southeastern Idlib, Erdogan lashing out at Russia and trying his luck with the remnant of the international Muslim Brotherhood organization elsewhere. The terrorists who came to Syria and became part of the ‘Syrian Moderate Opposition’ will now be recycled into ‘Libyan Moderate Opposition.’

The Syrian leadership has waited more than 1 year and 1 month before deciding to implement the Astana Agreement by force, the agreement signed between Erdogan and Putin should have secured the vital arteries of M5 and M4 and reopened them between Aleppo and northeast Syria and the coastal side, and also with the southern provinces of Damascus and Daraa through Homs and Hama. These highways are literally the artery of the Syrian economy.

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad decided to not give Erdogan any further excuse after the latter started his military invasion into the northern parts of Syria. In a message to the Syrian Arab Army units positioned in southern Idlib, Dr. Assad gave them order to deploy north and northeast: ‘Every inch of Syria should be liberated.’

Assad to SAA: You’re Ready to Clean Idlib from Terror

After swiftly penetrating the territories and cleaning more than 40 villages and towns from al-Qaeda Levant (aka HTS and Nusra Front), the SAA is on the outskirts of the strategic town of Ma’rat al-Numan.

The Syrian Arab Army gave the terrorists in control of the city a 24 hours ultimatum to ‘leave or will never’. Tomorrow is a new day.

The following report by the Syrian Ikhbariya news channel briefs the situation and also mentions the airlifting of Trump forces from northeast Syria to northern Iraq:

The following report by the Syrian Ikhbariya news channel briefs the situation and also mentions the airlifting of Trump forces from northeast Syria to northern Iraq:The video is also available on BitChute: https://www.bitchute.com/video/Zgi4xEYdJCf7/

Transcript of the English translation of the above report:

The Turkish occupation forces withdrew groups of their terrorist organizations from the northern countryside of Hasakeh in preparation for their transfer to Libya, these forces continue to withdraw groups of their mercenaries from Ras al-Ain and its surroundings in the northern countryside of Hasakeh at the rate of approximately 60 terrorists from each terrorist group to send the terrorists to Libya through Turkish territory to get them into the battles that are taking place there.

The Turkish occupation forces have moved about 100 terrorists from Jaysh Al-Islam organization from their areas of deployment in the northern countryside of Hasakeh, to use them in the battles in Idlib’s southern countryside, in an attempt to support the terrorist organizations that have collapsed in front of the Syrian Arab Army.

On another front, two US coalition helicopters landed at the illegal Kharab al-Jir airport in al-Malikia countryside near the Iraqi border and withdrew US officers towards northern Iraq.

Since the beginning of the Turkish aggression on Syrian territory, the United States occupation forces transported hundreds of their soldiers and military equipment from several areas of Syria to Iraq through illegal corridors and airports.

End of the transcript.

At first, NATO invaded Libya and destroyed the state there turning it into a hub to export anti-Islamic Wahhabi and Muslim Brotherhood takfiri terrorists, it used the terrorists in a number of countries notably in Syria. Now after their defeat in Syria, it’s not possible to move on the previous plan and deploy them into Iran, that failed with the Iranians foiling the ‘protests’ plot there, and in Iraq which turned out more difficult than expected, and in Lebanon where the Hezb Allah – President Aoun’s alliance turned the tide against the plotter.

The only vulnerable place where the US can still stretch its last muscles is back to North Africa, where it can endanger the Mediterranean and cause endless worries for the EU, the AU, AL, and the rest of the world. (EU: European Union, AU: African Union, AL: what’s left of the Arab League). Not to serve any interests of the US or its people, on the contrary, it’s creating endless enemies for them while impoverishing them, it’s to serve the same old project: Greater Israel.

The ropes jumper who played Europe and Russia is a faithful servant for those who appointed him in a project they still think is viable, Erdogan also still thinks he can have a place in it. The mystery remains: Why did Putin save Erdogan from a confirmed end in 2016?

NATO Terrorists Kill More Syrians; US Dogs of War Demand More Syrian Blood via ‘Caesar’

December 22, 2019

Miri Wood

Civilians killed in explosion in Tal Abiad - Raqqa Countryside - Syria

NATO terrorists are on another rampage in Syria, celebrating the passage of criminal legislation by warmongers on Capitol Hill, massacring nine civilians in two towns.

Nineteen persons were injured. Wednesday’s atrocities follow the passage by US Congress and Senate of another round of illicit sanctions against Syria, named for Qatar’s Caesar psyop hoax.

On 18 December, four persons were murdered when “a mine exploded inside a car near al Bawabeh al Hudeidiya in Tal Abyad city in Raqqa” governate. As two children were among the martyred, it is likely this was a family massacre. NATO terrorists of the Turkish variety of mercenaries who currently occupy this region of Syria. Four others were injured.

NATO terrorists also exploded a booby-trapped vehicle near to a popular restaurant in the town of Mabruka, near to Ras al-Ayn, Hasaka countryside, almost at the same time. Five civilians were murdered, and fifteen people were injured. The explosion was severe enough to cause major damage to the restaurant, surrounding homes, and other cars. This region of Syria is also occupied by NATO terrorists of the Turkish variety of mercenaries.

Trump regime occupation forces, on 18 December, transported 200 ISIS concubines and their abused children, from al Hol camp, in Syria, into Iraq, somewhere. Though al Hol is in Syria, it took the Syrian government almost three years, to gain freedom for the kidnapped child, Alvin, to repatriate him with his father, in Italy.

Such nightmares are courtesy of the American taxpayer.

Land mines and other explosives have been a deadly problem since the onset of the NATO Spring against Syria. Despite hundreds of deaths and dismemberments, the UN has not engaged beyond a Memorandum of Understanding to clear mines buried by NATO terrorists, and the occasional census on deaths and amputations.

Marcaillou's census was so impressive, she probably could have written the Book of Numbers.
UN Mine Action Service Director Agnes Marcaillou keeps excellent statistics.

On 19 December, NATO terrorists murdered 5 Syrians, and wounded 11 others, by blowing up a car near the Municipal Building in Tal Half, west of Ras al Ayn city, Hasaka countryside. Ras al Ayn is occupied by the Erdogan faction of NATO terrorists, who are mostly busy kidnapping civilians, forcing their displacement, appropriating their homes and businesses, and inserting hundreds of mercenary militiamen, as part of Erdogan’s plot of demographic changes, in preparation for criminal annexation.

NATO terrorists car bombing in Tal Half. Five civilians were martyred, eleven others, injured. 19 December.

This was a busy day for NATO terrorists, who also fired four rocket shells on a 3,000 unit apartment complex, in al Humadanyia, Aleppo governate. Three persons were injured, and massive damage was inflicted on the apartments. This followed Monday’s rocket attacks on a residential neighborhood of al Zahra town, also in Aleppo governate.

We remind our readers that rockets and mortars are bombs, bombs of the ground-to-ground variety, used by the savages to murder Syrians, to destroy their homes, the schools of their children, and their children.

This is a photograph of what some ground to ground rocket launchers look like. Note that these bomb launchers are stationed in a schoolyard, appropriated by the mass shooters. The original photograph was taken in a Homs schoolyard in 2013. It was later appropriated by the US-funded AMC, and shown as a schoolyard in Aleppo. Western journalists have used these images, as part of the propaganda campaign to normalize the horrors committed against Syrian children.

white-helmets-organ-traders
The original photo was taken by terrorists that stole a schoolyard in Homs, in 2013.
monsters-of-congress
Though AMC affixed logo to this photo of experts having stolen a children’s schoolyard, it was originally from a schoolyard in Homs, stolen by other experts.

NATO stenographer-journalists have not reported on this recent wave of atrocities against Syrian civilians, in residential Syrian neighborhoods, and during the time when most Syrian civilians are enjoying the Christmas season.

NATO stenographer-journalists have been too busy high-fiving Capitol Hill for finally passing the Fake Caesar bill, to report on this carnage by NATO terrorists. In their Freudian sadism over another opportunity to punish the Syrian Arab Republic for not capitulating to the will of empire, they neglected to mention failed attempts to pass obscene legislation based on fraudulent propaganda: The rabid war dogs had to pull their Caesar bill after the 2016 election because that portion which related to immigration sounded too much like Trump’s immigration plans.

Did this part of the Fake Caesar bill sound too much like Trump's Executive Orders on immigration?
Did this part of the Fake Caesar bill sound too much like Trump’s Executive Orders on immigration?

They did not mention that Caesar was previously stuffed into the S. 1 bill, the bill which still flounders.

S1 (2019) US legislation

Though the cheerful NATO media did mention the Caesar hoax was passed with the renewal of the National Defense Authorization Act, they neglected to mention despite two previous failures, Caesar was inserted somewhere within the 3,488 page NDAA, which the House had a whopping 19 hours to review, and which most Congress members voted to pass, nonetheless.

CNN — dubbed terrorists most trust name in news when it gave al Qaeda in Syria a makeover in 2016 — shed the most bathos when reporting the hoax being codified. Let us not forgot that CNN has consistently sided with “armed opposition” — NATO terrorists — since the early days of the crisis.

In August 2011, Anderson Cooper interviewed Syria’s UN ambassador, Bashar al Jaafari. Cooper challenged the diplomat’s veracity in stating that foreign invaders were slaughtering his countrymen.

It was of no consequence when CNN’s Clarissa Ward won awards for interviewing foreign terrorists when she was illegally in the SAR; warmongering media doubles down in the field of arrogance.

international-women's-day
CNN’s Clarissa Ward, right, has illegally entered the SAR multiple times, embedding herself with foreign takfiri.

Kate Bolduan co-authored the breathless news via CNN. She is the reporter known for dripping crocodile tears, on a live broadcast, over the White Helmets FX production of Omran. None noticed her ghastly silence when 12-year-old Abdullah Issa was kidnapped from a hospital and had his head cut off with a kitchen knife, by friends of the photographer who became famous for taking the photo of Omran.

omran
See Kate. See Kate cry.

CNN claims that Qatar’s Caesar Fraud — that miraculous ghost who has been on Capitol Hill, at the State Department, at the Holocaust Museum, whose identity continues to remain a secret — is now relieved that the warmongers who fund and arm NATO terrorists, have passed a new draconian measure of economic terrorism against his alleged country.

Qatar-owned, fake defector/ psyop Caesar before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, 2014. Mouaz Moustafa was his ‘translator.’

Bolduan threw kudos to Moustafa, the boy wonder who has been working the Hill since his twenties, who claims to have advised Obama on Libya, via being the ”Executive Director of the Libyan Council of North America,” despite not being Libyan. Moustafa is also the head of the “Syrian Emergency Task Force,” a taxpayer-supported charity through which the Arkansas-based The Wisdom House funds stunning projects in Idlib, such as painting little girls to look as though they are about to be marketed.

WisdomHseSyria Tweet Idlib Children Make up
The tweet explaining that cosmetology students were tested for skills with make-up and skin care products using very little Syrian girls, in al Qaeda occupied Idlib.

In 2013, Moustafa helped smuggle John McCain illegally into Syria, where they met with kidnappers and supporters of Jabhat al Nusra terrorists.

nicaragua
US Senator John McCain with Syrian FSA commander & Nusra supporter Salim Idris and terrorists responsible for kidnapping Lebanese pilgrims in Syrian border town of Bab al-Salam, near Turkey on 27 May 2013. Idriss has called ISIS “brothers” of the FSA.

The wunderkind, in turn, threw bouquets at a handful of congressmen, with the CNN report choosing to quote Adam Kinzinger, whose notoriety grows from his anti-Syria grandstanding:

It took a few years, but the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act will finally make its way to the President’s desk to become law. And for the Syrian people, this means there will finally be some justice brought to the evil Assad regime….

crimes-against-peace
President Assad, among the Syrian people.

As NATO stenography media considers their audience to have short-term memory deficits, Syria News reminds our readers that Kinzinger’s altruistic concerns for the Syrian citizenry has always been on the side of the ”armed moderate opposition;” he was hashtagging #SaveDaraa when the White Helmets were abusing corpses of Syrian soldiers murdered by those deranged moderates.

Trump
Monsters of congress support terrorists in Syria

Let us also never forget with whom he met, in Turkey, in 2014.

astana-fsa-opposition-delegates
Former Ambassador Ford with al Qaeda/FSA/JaN terrorist Abdel Jabber all Okaidi

It was Abdel Jabar al Okaidi, the traitor who took up arms against his country, and who, in 2013, made it clear to the world that he considered ISIL his “brothers,” complained that Jabhat al Nusra should not be on the US terror list, and was videoed with ISIS/ISIL takfiri who screamed their support of al Baghdadi, threatened to “slaughter” a minority population, and that the Islamic State is here to stay.

Somehow, Kinzinger and other congressmen and senators who pushed the Caesar hoax bill, missed these facts, facts straight from the horse’s mouth.

The Orwellianly named Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2019 is the epitome of arrogant colonialism. It applies more draconian, illicit, coercive, economic terrorism against the Syrian people, relief from which can only be given if Syria stops bombing foreign terrorists occupying parts of it; it empties its jails of all criminals and terrorists; it removes its elected president. It provides for a new round of anti-Syria propaganda within 180 days, when warmongering congressional committees will meet to lie that the Central Bank of Syria has no purpose except laundering. The entire scam has cost the US taxpayer a large fortune, in tax exemptions for: think tank ‘charities’ which pimp war porn; tax exemption for ‘charities’ such as the Arkansas-based ”The Wisdom House;” the cost of flying Kinzinger and entourage into Turkey, housing them, feeding them, and them holding meetings with supporters of al Baghdadi; tax exemption (and free Federal land) for the Holocaust Museum, which has shown the Caesar fraud photos; costs of flying terrorists — including drug addicts and convicted felons — into the US to lie on Capitol Hill and at the UN; paychecks for ‘translators’ and ‘lecturers;’ and, of course, the costs of the massive weapons provided to NATO terrorists in Syria. Details of this massive, incestuous fraud, here.

Trump signed the criminal Caesar Hoax Bill into law, on Friday, along with $738 billion ‘defense’ budget, and with full authorization of funding for the wall on the US-Mexico border, because double standard dicta of imperialism prohibit illegal entry of foreigners into the US, while US criminally deploys its military inside Syria, and gives away portions of the country to third party occupiers.

NATO media cheering the Caesar Hoax Bill have neglected to report that virtually all congress members in support of the Impeachment Schitt Show, have voted for the wall, the wall that they had previously condemned.

 US war crimes are consistently bipartisan. US legislation that promotes war criminal propaganda is also consistently bipartisan. The bipartisanship extends to collective, convenient amnesia when the rabid dogs of war engage in the geopolitical version of Freudian projection; when the lawbreakers bray that the Syrian government bombing civilians and destroying its own infrastructure, they are actually describing themselves.

It was the US-led fascist coalition that bombed al Raqqa, city of 800,000, into oblivion.

syrian-democratic-forces
CNN cheers destruction as far as the eye can see. This is al Raqqa, courtesy of the US-led war criminal coalition.

It was the government of Philadelphia that bombed a residential neighborhood, dropping an incendiary explosive from a helicopter.

It was the US government that fire bombed Waco.

Also on Friday, NATO terrorists suffered a setback, when China and Russia thwarted the plot of the P3 to extend the UN mandate which breached the sovereign rights of the Syrian Arab Republic, under the guise of fraudulent delivery of ‘humanitarian aid.’

As UNSCR 2449 (2018) does not expire until 10 January 2020, the American taxpayer can rest comfortably, secure in the likelihood that NATO terrorists will have a large influx of more weaponry, before the expiration date.

syrian-democratic-forces
US weapons gifts entered via Erdoganstan

— Miri Wood

Recommended:
https://www.syrianews.cc/monsters-congress-launch-new-syria-hating-caucus/

“The Good Terrorists”: How U.S. Airstrikes Helped Prop Al-Qaeda in Syria’s Idlib?

Global Research, December 14, 2019
Marines

Al-Qaeda in Syria has two noteworthy apologists. One is the jihadist propagandist Bilal Abdul Kareem, a former correspondent for CNN, often seen in videos sporting a long beard and reporting from the ground in the al-Nusra Front strongholds in northwestern Syria, and the other is Syria analyst and the fellow of the Middle East Institute Charles Lister.

Recently, Lister has written a research paper for the Hudson Institute, titled “The Syria Effect: Al-Qaeda Fractures,” [1] in which he has tried to prove that militants of al-Qaeda in Syria are not “bad guys” per se, rather they are “good terrorists” whose ambitions are restricted to fighting the Syrian government, and they don’t intend to mount terror attacks in the Western countries.

In conclusion of the lengthy screed, he has craftily proposed “Gaza-fication” of Syria’s northwestern Idlib, where like the Hamas in Gaza, the so-called “Salvation Government” of the al-Nusra Front, the Syrian affiliate of al-Qaeda, can be recognized as a legitimate government administering the northwestern enclave under the tutelage of Ankara.

Unwittingly, however, Charles Lister has spilled the beans in the article about a July 30 American airstrike in rural Aleppo that killed several high-profile jihadist dissidents, who had challenged the unity of the Washington-backed insurgency against the Syrian government offensive in northern Hamah and Idlib in late April.

Before getting into details, it’s worth noting that Hurras al-Din is a small radical outfit in Syria’s northwestern Idlib that split in 2018 from al-Qaeda in Syria, which was formerly known as al-Nusra Front until 2016, and now as Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS).

An excerpt from Charles Lister’s research paper reads:

“When the Syrian regime and Russia launched their all-out military offensive on northwestern Syria in late-April 2019, a debate ensued within Hurras al-Din – a breakaway faction of Tahrir al-Sham, formerly known as al-Nusra Front – should they assist Tahrir al-Sham and other opposition groups by reinforcing their frontlines in northern Hama?

“Given al-Qaeda Central chief Ayman al-Zawahiri’s public directives indicating the importance of Islamist unity and sustaining the armed struggle against the regime, the leader of Hurras al-Din Abu Hammam al-Suri and his deputy Sami al-Oraydi emerged as tacitly supportive of helping other jihadist groups, including Tahrir al-Sham, wherever necessary.

“The debate over Hurras al-Din’s role on Tahrir al-Sham’s opposition frontlines spilled out into the open in late June of 2019, when Hurras al-Din leader Abu Hammam al-Suri expelled two prominent Hurras al-Din clerics, Abu Dhar al-Masri and Abu Yahya al-Jazairi, for having issued non-sanctioned rulings forbidding fighting in northern Hama. Some alleged Abu Yahya had gone as far as pronouncing takfir on Tahrir al-Sham, thereby excommunicating them from Islam and labeling them apostates and legitimate targets for attack.

“Abu Hammam’s dismissal of Abu Dhar and Abu Yahya sparked an uproar within Hurras al-Din. The group’s internal judicial court, led by Abu Amr al-Tunisi, issued a petition signed by more than 300 members on June 23 demanding an arbitration involving Abu Hammam and his deputy, Sami al-Oraydi.

“However, neither Abu Hammam nor Oraydi turned up at the planned arbitration on June 25, leading the court’s chief, Abu Amr, to issue a furious five-minute audio statement accusing HaD’s leaders of nepotism. Abu Amr was swiftly expelled from Hurras al-Din, and this led another senior leader, Abu Yaman al-Wazzani, to declare in exasperation ‘the jihadist project over.’ Later that day, a statement confirmed that Wazzani and another fellow critic, Abu Musab al-Libi, had also been expelled from Hurras al-Din.

“Tensions persisted through the summer of 2019, albeit less intensely. But in a mysterious twist on June 30, 2019—just days after the above-mentioned crisis—Abu Amr al-Tunisi, Abu Yahya al-Jazairi and Abu Dhar al-Masri were all killed, along with three other allied hardliners (Abu al-Fid’a al-Tunisi, Abu Dujana al-Tunisi and Abu Ibrahim al-Shami) in an American airstrike that targeted a meeting of Hurras al-Din detractors in rural Aleppo.

“That was the first American strike in northwestern Syria in more than two years and it was followed up two months later by another on August 31, 2019, targeting Hurras al-Din ally Ansar al-Tawhid. Al-Qaeda veteran Abu Khallad al-Mohandis was also killed in an improvised explosive device attack that targeted his personal vehicle in Idlib city on August 22, 2019.”

It becomes abundantly clear after reading the excerpts from Charles Lister’s article that not only has Washington provided weapons and training to militant factions battling Damascus but it has also conducted airstrikes eliminating jihadist dissidents who dared to threaten the unity of large militant outfits in northwestern Idlib, such as Tahrir al-Sham, formerly known as al-Nusra Front.

During the eight-year proxy war in Syria, Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, the leader of al-Nusra Front, has emerged as the second most influential militant leader after the Islamic State’s slain chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. In fact, since the beginning of the Syrian conflict in August 2011 to April 2013, the Islamic State and al-Nusra Front were a single organization that chose the banner of Jabhat al-Nusra.

Although the current al-Nusra Front has been led by Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, he was appointed[2] as the emir of al-Nusra Front by Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, the late leader of Islamic State, in January 2012. Thus, al-Jolani’s Nusra Front is only a splinter group of the Islamic State, which split from its parent organization in April 2013 over a leadership dispute between the two organizations.

In August 2011, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was based in Iraq, began sending Syrian and Iraqi jihadists experienced in guerrilla warfare across the border into Syria to establish an organization inside the country. Led by a Syrian known as Abu Mohammad al-Jolani, the group began to recruit fighters and establish cells throughout the country. On 23 January 2012, the group announced its formation as Jabhat al-Nusra.

In April 2013, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi released an audio statement in which he announced that al-Nusra Front had been established, financed and supported by the Islamic State of Iraq. Al-Baghdadi declared that the two groups were merging under the name “Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.” The leader of al-Nusra Front, Abu Muhammad al-Jolani, issued a statement denying the merger and complaining that neither he nor anyone else in al-Nusra’s leadership had been consulted about it.

Al-Qaeda Central’s leader, Ayman al Zawahiri, tried to mediate the dispute between al-Baghdadi and al-Jolani but eventually, in October 2013, he endorsed al-Nusra Front as the official franchise of al-Qaeda Central in Syria. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, however, defied the nominal authority of al-Qaeda Central and declared himself the caliph of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

Keeping this background in mind, it becomes abundantly clear that a single militant organization operated in Syria and Iraq under the leadership of al-Baghdadi until April 2013, which chose the banner of al-Nusra Front, and that the current emir of the subsequent breakaway faction of al-Nusra Front, al-Jolani, was actually al-Baghdadi’s deputy in Syria.

Thus, the Islamic State operated in Syria since August 2011 under the designation of al-Nusra Front and it subsequently changed its name to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in April 2013after which it overran Raqqa and parts of Deir al-Zor in the summer of 2013. And in January 2014, it overran Fallujah and parts of Ramadi in Iraq and reached the zenith of its power when it captured Mosul in June 2014.

Excluding al-Baghdadi and a handful of his hardline Islamist aides, the rest of Islamic State’s top leadership is comprised of Saddam-era military and intelligence officials. According to a Washington Post report [3], hundreds of ex-Baathists constitute the top- and mid-tier command structure of the Islamic State who plan all the operations and direct its military strategy.

It is an indisputable fact that morale and ideology play an important role in battlefield, and well-informed readers must also be aware that the Takfiri brand of most jihadists these days has directly been inspired by the puritanical Wahhabi-Salafi ideology of Saudi Arabia, but ideology alone is not sufficient to succeed in battle.

Looking at the Islamic State’s astounding gains in Syria and Iraq in 2013-14, a question naturally arises that where did its recruits get all the training and state-of-the-art weapons that were imperative not only for hit-and-run guerrilla warfare but also for capturing and holding large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq.

According to a revelatory December 2013 news report [4] from a newspaper affiliated with the UAE government which supports the Syrian opposition, it is clearly mentioned that along with AK-47s, rocket-propelled grenades and other military gear, the Saudi regime also provided machine gun-mounted Toyota pick-up trucks to every batch of five jihadists who had completed their training in the training camps located in Jordan’s border regions along southern Syria.

Once those militants crossed over to Daraa and Quneitra in southern Syria from the Jordan-Syria border, then those Toyota pickup trucks could easily have traveled all the way to Raqqa and Deir al-Zor in eastern Syria, and thence to Mosul and Anbar in Iraq – the former strongholds of the Islamic State.

It is clearly spelled out in the report that Syrian militants got arms and training through a secret command center known as the Military Operations Center (MOC) based in the intelligence headquarters’ building in Amman, Jordan, that was staffed by high-ranking military officials from 14 countries, including the US, European nations, Israel and the Gulf states to wage a covert war against the Syrian government.

*

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Nauman Sadiq is an Islamabad-based attorney, columnist and geopolitical analyst focused on the politics of Af-Pak and Middle East regions, neocolonialism and petro-imperialism. He is a regular contributor to Global Research.

Notes

[1] The Syria Effect: Al-Qaeda Fractures

[2] Al-Jolani was appointed as the emir of al-Nusra Front by al-Baghdadi

[3] Islamic State’s top command dominated by ex-officers in Saddam’s army

[4] Syrian rebels get arms and advice through secret command center in Amman

TURKISH-FUNDED SYRIAN NATIONAL ARMY AND MYTH OF UNITED SYRIAN OPPOSITION

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Turkey’s Operation Peace Spring once again drew wide attention not only to the so-called Kurdish question, but also to attempts of Ankara to create a unified Syrian opposition as an alternative to the Assad government. According to official Turkish statements, the goal of the operation is to secure the southern Turkish border defeating “the terrorism” and allow up to 2 million of refugees to return to their homes. Nonetheless, there are no doubts that the operation, like previous military actions in the provinces of Aleppo, Lattakia and Idlib, will be used by Turkey to expand its own influence.

The Turkish-based Syrian Interim Government headquartered and Turkish-affiliated militant groups would be used as a tool of projecting Turkish military and political influence in the area. The Syrian National Army (SNA) are a brand of militant groups participating in the northeastern Syria offensive. Turkey’s Operations Olive Branch and Euphrates Shield demonstrated that the main goal of such groups is to serve as cannon folder on first line of the battle, while aircraft, battle tanks, artillery and special forces units of the Turkish Armed Forces do the main work. This allows Ankara to pretend that its actions in Syria are not military occupation, but a move needed to return the territory to the moderate Syrian opposition that opposes the ‘illegitimate regime’ of President Bashar al-Assad.

In the area of Greater Idlib, Turkish-backed factions formed the National Front for Liberation in May 2018, which was promoted as a moderate opposition coalition that would limit the influence of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other al-Qaeda-linked groups. Despite claiming to have 70,000 fighters (sic), the coalition immediately lost a struggle for power to its al-Qaeda counterparts and became a subordinate to Hayat Tahrir al-Sham. In 2018 and 2019, groups from the National Front for Liberation repeatedly participated in al-Qaeda operations against the Syrian Army.

In northern Aleppo, Ankara was more successful because the SNA formed in December 2017 operates only in the Turkish Army area of operations and much more depends on the logistical and supply infrastructure created by Turkish special services. Since its creation, the SNA has included 30 groups with lofty names like the Army of Elite or the First Brigade Command and a very few trained personnel. Despite this, the formation, according to different estimates, includes from 15,000 to 25,000 fighters. Its members participated in Operation Olive Branch and successfully continued receiving salaries ($300-400 per month) after it. Now, they are involved in the operation in northeastern Syria.

Just a few days ahead of the start of Operation Peace Spring, Turkey attempted to unite the National Front for Liberation and the Syrian National Army. On October 4, the groups even released a statement claiming that they had merged. A few hours after the release, fierce clashes between the groups erupted over properties seized in the Afrin area. This put an end to the unification efforts at least for now.

Another problem is that the Turkish-based Syrian Interim Government and especially its Defense Ministry have no real influence on SNA detachments because it had no levers of influence over funds, weapons, ammunition or even orders that they receive. The full control over these sides of the SNA life allows Ankara to successfully manipulate them, when these groups are needed to some military action. At the same time, this approach undermines attempts to create a unified command to manage these groups because commanders of these groups are constantly engaged in an internal struggle for control over weapons and money flow from their Turkish backers.

This explains why immediately after the end of the active phase of Operations Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch, the SNA dispersed into competing armed groups mostly concerned by looting properties in the seized areas and protecting racketeering of local business and markets. Therefore, the Turkey-controlled part of northern Syria was turned into a safe haven for drugs and weapons trafficking, and organized crime. Turkey’s iron hand once again turned competing gangs into a united force under the SNA brand for Operation Peace Spring. However, as soon as, the active phase of operation ends, the Turkish-controlled part of northeastern Syria will experience consequences similar to those faced by territories captured by Turkish-led forces in 2016-2018.

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SYRIAN WAR REPORT – SEPTEMBER 12, 2019: RUSSIA RESUMES STRIKES ON TERRORISTS IN IDLIB

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On September 11, the US-backed Revolutionary Commando Army claimed that it had repelled a Syrian Arab Army (SAA) attack in the 55km zone surrounding the US military garrison in al-Tanf. The militant group said that SAA units advanced using a Red Cross visit to civilians in the area.

A Syrian military source, stationed around the 55km zone, denied these claims. The source told SouthFront that no clashes happened in the area. There are about 300 Revolutionary Commando Army militants stationed in al-Tanf. They receive training, weapons and supplies from the US-led coalition despite multiple scandals surrounding this cooperation. Earlier in 2019, the group’s spokesperson, Mohamad Mostafa al-Jarrah, was caught raping a 10-year old girl from the nearby refugee camp.

A prominent Hayat Tahrir al-Sham commander, Abu Abd al-Ashda, left the militant group accusing its current leadership of massive corruption, and failing to defend militants’ territories in northern Hama during the recent SAA advance. According to him, millions of dollars that HTS had for rearmament simply disappeared.

Meanwhile, another key Hayat Tahrir al-Sham commander, Abu Abdul Mohsen al-Jazrawi, was assassinated in southeastern Idlib. The incident happened near the town of Saraqib on September 10. Al-Jazrawi, a Saudi citizen, was reportedly a close aide of the terrorist group leader Abu Mohammad al-Julani.

In the last few months, several prominent foreign terrorists were assassinated in Greater Idlib. The perpetrators of most of these attacks remain unknown.

On September 11, Syrian and Russian warplanes bombed positions of terrorists near the towns of Kafar Takharim and Darkush. The airstrikes were likely a response to the recently increased number of violations by militants in southern Idlib.

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Syrian Army Enters Strategic Town in Idlib after 5 Years

By Staff, Agencies

The Syrian Army forces entered the key town of Khan Shaykhun in Idlib province for the first time since 2014 after heavy clashes with terrorists and anti-government militants, a UK-based war monitor said.

The Syrian troops “entered the town of Khan Shaykhun for the first since they lost control of it in 2014,” according to the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The town serves as a major bastion for terrorists in northwestern Idlib province.

Reports say clashes are underway between the Syrian forces and Nusra Front terrorists. The army operations have focused on Nusra fortifications in Khan Shaykhun, leaving many terrorists dead or injured.

Idlib remains the only large area in the hands of foreign-backed terrorists after the Syrian army managed to wrest back control of almost all of the country’s land, undoing militants’ gains.

The government forces have gained more ground against Takfiri militants in the southern edge of Idlib in their latest offensive that was launched last week.

On Sunday, Syrian army troops and their allies established full control over Kfaridoun and Sabbaghiyah farms, which lie in an area between the towns of Madaya and Kafrsajna.

Earlier in the day, Syrian soldiers managed to regain control over Tal Kfar Idoun area, which is located west of a key highway that connects the capital Damascus with the strategic northern city of Aleppo.

They also managed to retake the village of Tel al-Nar and nearby farmland northwest of Khan Shaykhun on Sunday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

On August 5, the Syrian army declared in a statement the start of an offensive against foreign-sponsored militants in Idlib after those positioned in the de-escalation zone failed to honor a ceasefire brokered by Russia and Turkey and continued to target civilian neighborhoods.

Military expert to ST: Liberation of Khan Sheikhoun in Idleb will be a direct military defeat for Turkish regime

Tuesday, 20 August 2019 12:07

The military and strategic expert has asserted that the liberation of Khan Sheikhoun city will tighten the noose on terrorist organizations’ strongholds in the northern countryside of Hama and it will be a direct military defeat for the Turkish occupation forces in Morek area and in the East of the city.

Retired Brigadier-General Haitham Hassoun told the Syria Times e-newspaper that the importance of Khan Sheikhoun city lies in the fact that it is the terrorists’ largest stronghold in the south of Idleb.

“The liberation of this city will lead to the recapture of the other terrorists’ strongholds in the north of Hama with less human and material cost, and it will put the southern part of Hama-Aleppo road under the supervision of Syrian army for the first time. It will also be a moral defeat for terrorist organizations on all fronts,” the expert added.

As for Turkish regime’s attempts to hinder Syrian army’s advance in Idleb battle, the retired officer made it clear that Turkey has been informed about Syrian army’s determination to liberate Idleb militarily after the failure of Turkey to abide by its obligations in Sochi talks.

“Any move by the Turkish occupation forces will be firmly confronted and this was translated into action when Turkish regime tried yesterday to send vehicles loaded with ammunition, weapons and material equipment through the Syrian-Turkish borders to the defeated terrorists in Khan Sheikhoun city,”  the military expert stressed.

He underscored that the Turkish regime can’t  hinder the Syrian army’s military operations, but it will go ahead with offering logistic support to terrorists without direct involvement in fighting with Syrian army.

“The Turkish enemy will not be involved in a direct battle with Syrian army because this will end in a major regional war,”   Retired Brigadier-General Hassoun concluded.

Interviewed by: Basma Qaddour    

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Syrian War Report – August 19, 2019: Tiger Forces Advance To Encircle Khan Shaykhun

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Government forces are rapidly advancing in southern Idlib inflicting large casualties to radical militant groups.

During the weekend, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), the Tiger Forces and their allies have liberated the villages of Khirbat Abidin, Hursh al-Tawilah, Mughr Hunta, the farms of Nijm, Nisr and al-Safar, and the Nar Hill. According to pro-government sources, at least 7 units of military equipment and 2 dozens of militants were eliminated in recent clashes.

In own turn, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and its allies carried out several counter-attacks involving suicide vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices in Madayah and northwest of Khan Shaykhun. Despite some tactical successes, they were not able to turn the tide of the battle and stop the SAA advance.

Government forces are currently aiming to cut off the M5 highway and encircle the town of Khan Shaykhun and other militant positions to the south of it.

On August 17, members of the Turkish-backed National Syrian Army (NSA) shelled positions of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) at the town of Tell Rifaat and the nearby villages of Zyuan, Nyrabia and Tell Madiq in northern Aleppo. According to pro-YPG sources, the shelling also targeted a positions of the Russian Military Police near Tell Rifaat. No casualties among Russian personnel were reported.

The NSA shelling started in response to an attack by YPG-linked Kurdish rebels in the Afrin Region. The rebels’ attack resulted in the deaths of 5 Turkish-backed militants. Tell Rifaat and its surroundings are under the joint control of the YPG and the SAA. YPG-linked cells use this area as a safe heaven to carry out attacks on Turkey-led forces in northern Aleppo thus provoking Turkish responses and increasing tensions between Damascus and Ankara.

Russian forces are establishing several positions in the southern Deir Ezzor countryside, pro-opposition media reported on August 16 citing local sources. The reports claimed that Russian units are working to establish new positions in the town of al-Jalaa.

Located less than 30km away from the border with Iraq, al-Jalaa is one of the largest towns in the western part of the Middle Euphrates River Valley. A highway leading to al-Qa’im border crossing passes through the town.

The deployment of Russian forces in al-Jalaa could be related to the near opening of the Syrian-Iraqi border as well as the ongoing security operations against the remaining ISIS cells in the region.

GOVERNMENT TROOPS ARE STORMING KHAN SHAYKHUN AFTER CUTTING OFF M5 HIGHWAY NORTH OF IT (MAPS)

Government Troops Are Storming Khan Shaykhun After Cutting Off M5 Highway North Of It (Maps)

Click to see the full-size image

Late on August 19, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), the Tiger Forces and other pro-government factions started storming the town of Khan Shaykhun in southern Idlib.

Earlier on the same day, government troops seized several important hills north of Khan Shaykhun and cut off the M5 highway, which Turkish forces attempted to use to enter the town.

According to some pro-government sources, members of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and other radical groups have started withdrawing from Khan Shaykhun. Reports are also circulating that militants are planning to withdraw from the entire northern Hama parea. Nonetheless, these reports still have to be confirmed.

The situation is developing.

Government Troops Are Storming Khan Shaykhun After Cutting Off M5 Highway North Of It (Maps)

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Syrian Army breaks through militant lines to advance on Khan Sheikhoun: video

 

BEIRUT, LEBANON (6:00 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army (SAA) scored a big advance in the southern countryside of the Idlib Governorate this past week after cracking the militant lines near the key city of Khan Sheikhoun.

Chronicling the Syrian Arab Army’s advance in southern Idlib was the Anna News Agency, who captured exclusive footage of the military’s operations and push towards Khan Sheikhoun.

“On August 13, the Tiger Forces faced a challenge. In one night, they had to go half the distance between the cities of Hobeit and Khan Sheikhoun,” the Anna News said.

“When the last gleams of the sun went out over the horizon, the Tiger Forces set their machine in motion. But the Syrian movements did not go unnoticed. Detachments of militants prepared to meet the Tigers with everything they had,” they continued.

“We were especially struck by the number of artillery shells that the militants fired at us. After taking the strategic height of Tel Ays, the strategic city of Khan Sheikhoun was clearly visible. Everyone expected that the troops would go to storm the city, but instead the troops turned north,” they added.

Since this video was posted, the Syrian Arab Army has begun their attack to capture Khan Sheikhoun from the militant forces in southern Idlib.

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