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Syrian Civil War News and Discussions

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#981
Sciencerocks

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Department of Defense identifies 3 Americans killed in Syria bombing
Source: CNN

 

By Barbara Starr and Veronica Stracqualursi, CNN

Updated 1316 GMT (2116 HKT) January 18, 2019

 

(CNN)The Department of Defense has identified three of the four Americans killed in Syria on Wednesday.

Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonathan R. Farmer, 37, of Boynton Beach, Florida; Navy Chief Cryptologic Technician Shannon M. Kent, 35, of upstate New York; and DOD civilian Scott A. Wirtz of St. Louis, Missouri were killed Wednesday in the explosion in Manbij, Syria, according to the Department of Defense.

All three died "as a result of wounds sustained from a suicide improvised explosive device," according to the military.

The fourth American killed in Syria was a contractor supporting the Defense Department, according to a Pentagon spokesman. The Pentagon will not release his name since he was not military.

 

Read more: https://edition.cnn....lled/index.html


"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." - Salman Rushdie

 

“He who dares not offend cannot be honest,” — Thomas Paine


#982
Sciencerocks

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Al Arabiya English
‏Verified account @AlArabiya_Eng
54s55 seconds ago

An explosion was heard in the vicinity of Syria’s al-Motahalik al-Janobi, south of Damascus, Syrian state TV reported on Sunday morning. https://twitter.com/...871287404875776


"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." - Salman Rushdie

 

“He who dares not offend cannot be honest,” — Thomas Paine


#983
Erowind

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Bolton dials back Trump’s vow to withdraw US troops from Syria

 

https://thinkprogres...n-73b333b757d5/

 

Introduction:

(Think Progress) President Trump will not withdraw US troops in Syria without assurances from Turkey that it won’t attack the Kurdish troops helping the United States fight ISIS, National Security Adviser John Bolton said on Sunday.

 

Bolton’s comments come just three weeks after Trump announced he would immediately withdraw all U.S. forces from the country, a decision that was widely condemned even by some members of the president’s own party.

 

Bolton seemed intent on reframing the move Sunday, speaking with reporters while in Israel.

 

“There are objectives that we want to accomplish that condition the withdrawal,” Bolton said, according to NBC.

 

“This is a cause and effect mission. Timetables or the timing of the withdrawal occurs as a result of the fulfillment of the conditions and the establishment of the circumstances that we want to see. And once that’s done, then you talk about a timetable.”

 

 

Genuinely thank God. We can only hope the military doesn't backpeddle again. 


Current status: slaving away for the math gods of Pythagoras VII.


#984
Sciencerocks

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Al Jazeera News
‏Verified account @AJENews
1h1 hour ago

BREAKING: Syrian air defence repels Israeli attack in south: State media https://aje.io/l7c8s


"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." - Salman Rushdie

 

“He who dares not offend cannot be honest,” — Thomas Paine


#985
caltrek

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Texan Faces Terrorism Charge After Capture in Syria

 

https://www.courthou...pture-in-syria/

 

Introduction:

(Courthouse News) – HOUSTON - A Texas man who U.S. allies captured on a battlefield in Syria this month appeared at a hearing in Houston federal court Friday to face charges of supporting the Islamic State terrorist group.

 

Federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment against Warren Christopher Clark, 34, on Friday following his initial appearance before a magistrate judge. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

 

He is charged with attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State group, also called ISIS, from 2011 to October 2015.

 

The Syrian Democratic Forces, a Kurdish group that works with U.S. soldiers, announced on Jan. 6 that Clark was one of five foreigners they had captured during an offensive against ISIS in northern Syria, where some of the terrorist organization’s estimated 30,000 fighters are active in one of the few areas that remain under its control.

 

Clark does not fit the typical profile of the dozens of U.S. citizens who have traveled to the Middle East to join ISIS.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#986
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Map of recent Israeli and Iranian activity in Syria:

 

Syria_strikes.png

 

Source: https://geopolitical...activity-syria/


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#987
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Inside an ISIS religion camp: How I survived the grip of terror

 

https://www.thenatio...terror-1.818015

 

Introduction:

(The National) As US-backed forces move to take the last remaining areas from ISIS, the militant group that once exacted brutal control across swathes of Syria and Iraq, The National has asked two activists and journalists to speak about their experience of living under the group's dark rule. These accounts are published alongside analysis and news looking back at the years-long war against ISIS and to what the future holds for a group defeated on the battlefield but far from wiped out.

 

I am a media activist in Deir Ezzor. When the uprising in Syria first started in 2011, I went to live in neighbourhoods controlled by the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and started working with the rebels. Nearly three years later, when fighting erupted between the FSA and ISIS in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor, I turned my lens towards the violations that militants were committing against the FSA. I started to document the battles between the FSA and ISIS. I visited battlefronts and started to shuffle between the towns which were starting to fall in the hands of the militant organisation. Friends and people I loved were shot by ISIS. I saw dead bodies.

 

The war was intense and ISIS was fighting ferociously. Even when ISIS took over most of Deir Ezzor in 2014, I continued to work as a media activist in secret despite the risks and threats involved. I escaped death several times. I survived several ISIS raids and checkpoints. But I always feared that my mobile phone would be confiscated. My phone was my death sentence. It contained all the reports I was filing against the group.

 

In order to avoid suspicion, I registered in one of the Al Tawbat institutes, a doctrinal camp set up by militants for those who wanted to ‘repent’ and pledge allegiance to the group. I filled out an application and submitted it to the group.

TOPSHOTS-TOPSHOT-SYRIA-CONFLICT-IS.jpg?f

Kurdish-led forces seized the Islamic State's main hub of Hajin on December 14, a milestone in a massive and costly US-backed operation to eradicate the jihadists from eastern Syria.

AFP


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#988
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Lawmakers urge Trump to protect Kurds after US withdrawal https://trib.al/wlcmzvR


"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." - Salman Rushdie

 

“He who dares not offend cannot be honest,” — Thomas Paine


#989
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Senate Republicans break with Trump over plans to pull troops from Syria, Afghanistan

 

https://www.latimes....0131-story.html

 

Introduction:

(Los Angeles Times) The vast majority of Senate Republicans backed Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday in a rebuke of President Trump's rationale for withdrawing U.S. troops from Syria and Afghanistan, voting to declare that Islamic State's continued operations in both countries poses a serious threat to the United States.

 

The measure was presented as an amendment to a greater Middle East policy bill that has yet to pass the Senate and will face challenges in the House, particularly due to a provision regarding Israel-focused boycotts. But the vote is nonetheless an unmistakable sign of Republicans' growing frustrations with the president, particularly when it comes to some of the decisions he has made as commander in chief.

 

Last month, the president announced that he would be withdrawing American military personnel from Syria, stating in a Twitter post that: "We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there during the Trump presidency."

 

The backlash from Republicans was immediate and has remained consistent, as even some of the president's closest allies have warned him against the dangers of withdrawing from battlefields where the United States has made gains, but by no means has expunged Al Qaeda, Islamic State and their affiliates.

 

While the amendment recognizes the work that has been done to push back such terror organizations, the amendment specifically names Al Qaeda and Islamic State as "a global threat, which merits increased international contributions to the counterterrorism, diplomatic and stabilization efforts underway in Syria and Afghanistan." It also notes that "withdrawal of the United States forces from the ongoing fight against these groups ... could allow terrorists to regroup, destabilize critical regions, and create vacuums that could be filled...(by)... Iran or Russia, to the detriment of United States interests and those of our allies."


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#990
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Starspawn0 found this article:

 

The Assad regime deliberately killed war correspondent Marie Colvin, judge rules

 

https://news.vice.co...nt-marie-colvin

 

Introduction:

(Vice News) A U.S. court has ruled that the Assad regime deliberately targeted American war correspondent Marie Colvin, who was killed in the Syrian city of Homs in 2012.

Describing the killing as an “unconscionable act,” U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson ruled the Syrian government was liable for at least $302.5 million in damages to Colvin’s family, after finding its forces had “engaged in an act of extrajudicial killing of a United States national.”

 

Colvin, a 56-year-old war correspondent working for Britain’s Sunday Times, was killed alongside 28-year-old French photographer Remi Ochlik when government forces shelled the makeshift broadcast studio they were operating from in Homs in 2012.

 

"She was specifically targeted because of her profession, for the purpose of silencing those reporting on the growing opposition movement in the country," the judge wrote in her opinion, published Wednesday.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#991
starspawn0

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Russian media is constantly pumping-out false claims about White Helmets:

https://mobile.twitt...103432699920385

The obvious goal is to discredit, malign and eventually target the
@SyriaCivilDef. We covered this our @bellingcat article a couple of months ago.


But I also suspect there’s something a bit more clever going on. By continually pushing this line, these outlets (RT, Sputnik, Press TV) are playing on the reiteration effect.

This is when a person believes something is more truthful the more they hear it.


Despite the fact that lots of the claims over the last 6 months have been thoroughly absurd, or make claims of “irrefutable evidence” that doesn’t appear to exist (probably because the last “irrefutable evidence” was footage from a computer game)...

the people who read Sputnik or RT will be conviced any CW attack in Idlib is clearly the work of the SCD because it sounds *right*.

So, @mfa_russia, where is your evidence?


It’s also worth pointing out this is also likely gaming search engines.

If a person who is unsure of the situation after a chemical attack in Syria wants to find out what’s happened, Google is the obvious place to start.

But the search string

>white helmets chemical attacks

Result in 5/10 of the results (at least for me) coming from Tass, PressTV or Sputnik, sources that I would not exactly call “reliable”.

Pushing these kinds of articles in such bulk not only helps manipulate how humans ingest and assess information, but also how the majority of people find and assess information: using search engines.


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#992
SkittleBlu

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Coalition warplanes hit last Islamic State enclave in eastern Syria

 

 

NEAR BAGHOUZ, Syria (Reuters) - U.S.-led coalition warplanes struck Islamic State’s last stronghold in eastern Syria and hundreds of civilians fled the besieged enclave on Monday as U.S.-backed fighters pressed their campaign to seize it.

 
Coalition jets roared overhead as columns of white smoke rose from the Islamic State-held Baghouz area a short distance from the Iraqi border, a Reuters witness said.
 
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which have driven Islamic State (IS) from swathes of northern and eastern Syria with U.S.-led coalition support, launched an offensive on Saturday to capture the enclave in Deir al-Zor province.

 

https://www.reuters....a-idUSKCN1Q01V3

 

Although the Islamic State may be losing the rest of its territory, the insurgency rages on.

 

What more can be done? 



#993
PhoenixRu

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Russian media is constantly pumping-out false claims about White Helmets:

 

I'll just leave this here... tweet of Riam Dalati, BBC Syria Producer:

 

2000765_900.jpg

 

PS as some of you may have noticed, I no longer participate in political debates, so this post was rather an exception. In general, I'm absolutely not going to start another "debate of the blind with the deaf".



#994
starspawn0

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In that same Twitter thread you posted:

Riam has no credibility. He claims to officially work for BBC, this is misleading he's NOT a BBC employee he's freelance. He was caught out making false claims abt an SDF official & linking to a faked audio. He's claimed SDF is trained by Hezbollah (completely discredited).

He also did the Op-Ed titled "Raqqa's Dirty Secret", which claimed there was a secret deal between the SDF and ISIS to allow them to leave the city. The deal was infact not a secret the SDF talked abt it for months before hand even on BBC radio. It allowed civilians to escape.

deal didn't allow foreign fighters to leave (they had to surrender) bec the SDF felt they were most likely to be suicide bombers. Deal also did not allow ISIS to leave with ANY heavy weapons, only light arms just like SAA/Russia allows in their deals. Op-Ed debunked repeatedly.


He's right that Dalati is not an official BBC journalist or "producer" in the usual sense of the term. He's a "producer" in the sense that he has "produced" things that BBC has posted once or twice.

#995
PhoenixRu

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Riam has no credibility... etc... etc... etc...

 

Sigh... exactly the answer i was expecting.



#996
Sciencerocks

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US planning to leave 1K troops in Syria: report

Source: The Hill


The U.S. military is making plans to keep almost 1,000 troops in Syria, several months after President Trump said he was removing all U.S. forces from the country.

Citing U.S. officials, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that the Trump administration plans to continue supporting Kurdish fighters in Syria. The officials added that the plan could keep as many as 1,000 forces across the country, but said the specific number of troops that will remain is still being determined.

Trump has repeatedly claimed since December that ISIS has been fully defeated in the region.
“You kept hearing it was 90 percent, 92 percent, the caliphate in Syria. Now it’s 100 percent, we just took over,” Trump said during remarks to troops last month.

Lawmakers in Congress and U.S. officials, however, have maintained that ISIS hasn't been completely defeated.

 

Read more: https://thehill.com/...in-syria-report


"What is freedom of expression? Without the freedom to offend, it ceases to exist." - Salman Rushdie

 

“He who dares not offend cannot be honest,” — Thomas Paine






Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Syria, Iraq, Turkey, Russia, Saudi Arabia, ISIS, Kurds, Assad, Civil War, Iran

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