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  • Firestorm
    replied
    Turkey Is Turning Into the Next Pakistan

    There isn't much that Turkey's president can do these days to further debase his reputation in the West. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has crushed peaceful protests at home and abroad, closed newspapers, threatened American soldiers, and collectively scapegoated Kurds. But over the weekend, Erdogan managed to go even lower.

    At a rally at Kahramanmaras, the Turkish leader brought a trembling 6-year-old girl on stage dressed in military garb and told her she would be honored if she died as a martyr. He sounded like a terrorist. We expect this kind of child abuse from the fanatics in Hamas or Hezbollah. Erdogan though is the leader of an important NATO ally.
    I see nothing wrong in this. Erdogan can join the US Allies Hall of Fame alongside Pinochet, Yahya Khan and others.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ironduke
    replied
    An article from NewsRu, translated from the original Russian.
    https://www.newsru.com/russia/16feb2018/gruz334.html

    Ex-State Duma deputy declared about the death of 334 Russians under the impact of the US coalition in Syria

    Former State Duma deputy Viktor Alksnis stated that Syrian region of Deir ez Zor on February 7, 334 Russians were killed in coalition attack led by the United States on February 7. This data is based on interviews with family members of those people who fought in Syria and have information about the latest events, said the ex-parliamentarian while speaking on the air on the television channel Dozhd.

    According to Alksnis, among the dead were 217 people from the fifth assault team, 10 from the second assault force, 94 from the storm squad "Viasna" and 13 from the artillery division. The interlocutor of the channel noted that these figures are unofficial and, in his opinion, inconclusive.

    The former State Duma deputy also said that according to his information, servicemen of the Special Operations Forces of the Russian Armed Forces also participated in the raid on February 7, but there is no information regarding the dead and injured among them. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and the Kremlin have previously rejected reports that the Russian military were targeted by the coalition.
    Last edited by Ironduke; 02 Mar 18,, 13:43.

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  • Ironduke
    replied
    David French's thoughts on the Battle of Khasham:
    https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/...ation-serious/

    Americans and Russians Fought a Battle in Syria — It’s Time to Care

    And that brings me to one of the most momentous mysteries of the new year. Did American and Russian forces just engage in a deadly clash in Syria, and was that clash the direct result of a Putin-approved effort to test American defenses? While Americans were arguing over Russian Facebook posts, did American air power and artillery leave up to 300 Russians dead on a Syrian battlefield?

    Here’s the basic chronology.

    On the night of February 7, “pro-regime” Syrian forces reportedly launched an assault on a “known” American base. American forces defended themselves with attack helicopters, jets, and AC-130 gunships, and the attackers withdrew after taking significant casualties.

    That next week, on February 12, Reuters reported that at least two Russians died in the fighting, according to their associates. The Russian casualties were apparently contractors accompanying regime forces. By February 13, both the Washington Post and New York Times had picked up the story, and the number of rumored Russian dead swelled to “large numbers” or “dozens,” but — we were assured — there was no direct confrontation between Americans and members of the Russian military.

    As rumors swirled online that the true number of Russian dead numbered in the hundreds, the Washington Post published a report suggesting that the attack on U.S. forces may have had official Russian backing:
    A Russian oligarch believed to control the Russian mercenaries who attacked U.S. troops and their allies in Syria this month was in close touch with Kremlin and *Syrian officials in the days and weeks before and after the assault, according to U.S. intelligence reports.

    In intercepted communications in late January, the oligarch, Yevgeniy Prigozhin, told a senior Syrian official that he had “secured permission” from an unspecified Russian minister to move forward with a “fast and strong” initiative that would take place in early February.
    While we wait for answers, at least two things are clear. First, both Russia and the United States are downplaying the incident. If the Russians were testing American will, they got their answer, but there appears to be no American desire to retaliate or to escalate the confrontation into a full force-on-force encounter. This is encouraging, but not entirely comforting. When blood is spilled, the consequences are not always predictable or controllable.

    Second, the situation in Syria is extraordinarily dangerous. It’s understandable that international eyes are focused on North Korea, but consider this: If reports of hundreds of Russian dead are correct, the American military just killed more Russians than it did in any single encounter throughout the entirety of the Cold War. That’s stunning. At present, a few thousand American troops are in the midst of the world’s most vicious war, rubbing up against hostile Russians, Syrians, Turks, Iranians, and Lebanese. Confrontations are inevitable. Proper management of those confrontations is not.

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  • Ironduke
    replied
    According to syrialiveuamap:

    The 2nd Phase of The Turkish Offensive on Afrin is going to be begin in the next few hours, it includes opening of all the fronts against Afrin.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ironduke
    replied
    Looks like we might be in for the Battle of Khasham redux. The Syrian government has been sending reinforcements to Deir Ezzor, with reports of US airstrikes amid clashes between the SAA and SDF again. Which underlies in part the utter insanity of this war. They're enemies along the Euphrates, but ostensibly allies in Afrin.

    Leave a comment:


  • citanon
    replied
    I'm reading this stuff, and the whole time in the back of my mind it's reminding me of what happened with Minsky. Big difference: she was defending her homeland. These guys are mercenaries fighting for money. Nevertheless the same crass banal evil is ultimately responsible. The same people who invade the land of others also throw away the lives of their countrymen without a single care.

    From the point of view of criminal psychology it makes perfect sense, but it still makes me sad.
    Last edited by citanon; 25 Feb 18,, 10:27.

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  • Ironduke
    replied
    Excerpts from a recording of a call regarding the Wagner PMC Russians, as reported by the VOA:

    https://www.polygraph.info/a/us-wagn.../29044339.html

    The first audio clip:
    “The reports that are on TV about … well, you know, about Syria and the 25 people that are wounded there from the Syrian f*** Army and -- well ... to make it short, we’ve had our asses f*** kicked. So, one squadron f**** lost 200 people …right away, another one lost 10 people… and I don’t know about the third squadron but it got torn up pretty badly, too... So three squadrons took a beating… The Yankees attacked… first they blasted the f*** out of us by artillery and then they took four helicopters up and pushed us in a f*** merry-go-round with heavy caliber machine guns….They were all shelling the holy f*** out of it and our guys didn’t have anything besides the assault rifles… nothing at all, not even mentioning shoulder-fired SAMs or anything like that…So they tore us to pieces for sure, put us through hell, and the Yankees knew for sure that the Russians were coming, that it was us, f*** Russians… Our guys were going to commandeer an oil refinery and the Yankees were holding it… We got our f**** asses beat rough, my men called me... They’re there drinking now… many have gone missing… it’s a total f***-up, it sucks, another takedown….Everybody, you know, treats us like pieces of sh*** ... They beat our asses like we were little pieces of sh***... but our f*** government will go in reverse now and nobody will respond or anything and nobody will punish anyone for this... So these are our casualties…
    The second audio clip:
    “Out of all vehicles only one tank survived and one BRDM (Armored Reconnaissance Vehicle) after the attack, all other BRDMs and tanks were destroyed in the first minutes of the fight, right away.”
    The third audio clip:
    “Just had a call with a guy; so they basically formed a convoy, but did not get to their f*** positions by some three hundred meters. One unit moved forward, the convoy remained in place, about 300 meters from the others. The others raised the American f*** flag and their artillery started f*** ours really hard. Then their f*** choppers flew in and starter f*** everybody. Ours just running around. Just got a call from a pal, so there are about 215 f*** killed. They simply rolled ours out f*** hard. Made their point. What the f*** ours were hoping for in there?! That they will f*** run away themselves? Hoped to f*** scare them away? Lots of people f*** so bad [they] can’t be f*** ID-d. There was no foot soldiers [on the American side]; they simply f*** our convoy with artillery.”
    Last edited by Ironduke; 25 Feb 18,, 09:46.

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  • Ironduke
    replied
    Turkish/TFSA advances in northwestern Afrin province today:

    Leave a comment:


  • isim
    replied
    Gendarme special forces and police special forces depart from Turkey to Arfin city. Both special foreces are experienced in residential area operations.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ironduke
    replied
    Looks like the Turks/TFSA are moving to surround Jandaris to prepare for a siege. They stopped their advance toward the city from the west several days ago, but three villages to the west fell in heavy fighting in the last day. They're less than a mile from cutting off the main road from Afrin city. I wonder if the YPG will abandon the town, or make a stand.

    Leave a comment:


  • citanon
    replied
    Originally posted by Ironduke View Post
    A Russian source speaking to France24 has said that 218 Russians were killed in the vicinity of Deir-el-Zour.


    http://www.france24.com/en/20180223-...agner?ref=tw_i
    These bastards aren't even hiding the fact that they don't have a single care for the poor sops who died.

    Leave a comment:


  • citanon
    replied
    And in Ghouta, the biggest terrorists in Syria continue

    Citing local sources, a correspondent for Lebanese outlet Al Mayadeen, which is supportive of the Syrian government and its allies, wrote Friday on social media that Damascus was planning to announce a plan to evacuate children under the age of 12, men over the age of 60 and all women from eastern Ghouta via recently established safe passages. The correspondent said the Syrian government was awaiting the results of the U.N. Security Council resolution, but it planned to go on fighting ISIS, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and their allies.
    Pretty clear what that means isn't it?

    http://www.newsweek.com/russia-iran-...s-afrin-818814

    Leave a comment:


  • citanon
    replied
    https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...n-turkish-army

    I think the author has a pretty biased characterization of the conflict, but the longer the Afrin operations go on, the more these questions will arise.

    Leave a comment:


  • citanon
    replied
    Wall street journal's take:

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russias...ops-1519429855

    In my view:

    A. They will try again. If not on the ground then in the air.
    B. The US so far has spoken the exact language that the Russians respect: force.

    Leave a comment:


  • Ironduke
    replied
    A Russian source speaking to France24 has said that 218 Russians were killed in the vicinity of Deir-ez-Zour.

    The business of war: Russian mercenaries in Syria

    A paramilitary chief who serves as a contact for Russians who want to become mercenaries in Syria discusses the grim business of making war for profit. He spoke to FRANCE 24 only on condition of anonymity.

    If you live near Russia's Yekaterinburg and want to fight with pro-regime forces in Syria, there’s one man you need to speak to. He is a paramilitary chief who advises Russians wanting to work for Wagner, a shadowy Kremlin-linked private military contractor known for sending mercenaries to Syria.

    “Each week I receive five or six new requests,” he told FRANCE 24. “Some call me by phone, others come to see me. About a hundred people in the region are planning to go to Syria.”

    He said that interest has only increased since the Russian foreign ministry reported that five Russians died in a US bombing raid on pro-regime troops attacking opposition forces in Syria's Deir Ezzor province on February 7.

    “Now, it’s more about getting revenge than it is about money,” he said.

    But the chief warned that these revenge-seekers don’t know the whole story. According to him, it wasn’t just five Russians killed in the American raid – it was 218. (US officials have said about 100 pro-regime fighters were killed, without specifying whether they were Syrian army, Russian or other forces.)

    However, the paramilitary chief said only 150 bodies have so far been recovered.

    “There are 150 people in refrigerators on the Wagner base” back in Russia, he said. “Their state? 'Minced meat' is how they described them to me.”

    Even so, the chief doesn’t feel much sympathy for those who died; he believes it is a fate they chose.

    “If you sign up with a private military company, you have sold yourself to them for money,” he said. “The company can use you however it wants. What will happen to you after your death? If you’ve been turned into mincemeat, so what? They put you in a bag, close the coffin and – in the best-case scenario – send you home. In the worst, they bury you there. If you are ready to earn money by killing people and defending the commercial interests of others, then that’s fine.”

    Though the assault happened more than two weeks ago, the chief says that the families of the dead still don’t know what happened to their relatives.

    “Nothing will happen before the presidential election on March 18,” he told FRANCE 24.

    “We all know why. There’s no problem keeping the deaths secret.”


    The military chief told FRANCE 24 that these private contractors step in when the Russian government needs deniability.

    “What’s the main goal of any private military company? Defend the interests of a government if it can’t use the regular army,” he said.

    He says Wagner, which also sends mercenaries to fight in the Donbass region in Ukraine, is in the mercenary business for profit.

    “The goal is financial revenue and the possibility of taking control of a large market for oil resources so our country can control it,” he said. “I think that’s a good thing."

    "We didn’t start this war. But it’s up to us to finish it."
    http://www.france24.com/en/20180223-...agner?ref=tw_i
    Last edited by Ironduke; 24 Feb 18,, 05:30.

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