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ISIS update 1/1/2016..  Iraqi forces sweep Ramadi neighborhoods for jihadists and IEDs

Friday, January 1, 2016 11:26
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(Before It's News)

Iraqi forces sweep Ramadi neighborhoods for jihadists

Iraqi forces clearing Ramadi of IEDs

Iraq: Turkey refusing to withdraw forces from north

Turkish Army Clashes With Kurdish Fighters

PKK captures 52 Turkish Soldiers

Kurdistan saysnIn this clip you can see few of the 52 Turkish Soldiers that were captured by the Kurdish fighters of PKK in North Kurdistan (Turkey’s Kurdistan) during the recent fight between PKK and the occupied Turkish Army. These Soldiers mention that Erdogan and the Turkish State does not care about them, that the officers and majors of the Army fled during the fight and left them alone. They also talk about the fact that they do not want to fight in North Kurdistan, they would rather be home than in an occupy land and ask for the Turkish Military to end its campaign against the Kurdish population and end the occupation of North Kurdistan.

Turks Warn “We’re One Step Away From Civil War” On Erdogan Crackdown

“When Justice and Development won by a landslide — a result that Mr. Erdogan interpreted as the public’s demand for stability — many had hoped it would lead to the revival of peace talks.”

That’s from The New York Times, who is out on Thursday with a look at Turkey’s escalating civil war.

To be sure, we haven’t been shy in our assessment of the conflict. We’ve branded the fighting a “civil war” since the summer, when HDP’s strong showing at the ballot box derailed Erdogan’s efforts to transition the country to an executive presidency, a move which would help to strongman consolidate his power.

A subsequent suicide bombing in Suruc prompted the PKK to kill two Turkish policemen the group says were cooperating with Islamic State (which was blamed for the initial attack). That was more than Ankara needed to justify a crackdown on the PKK in the name of the war on “terror.” From there, it was an all-out war between Erdogan and the Kurds, a conflict which quickly transformed cities like Cizre, into warzones.

As al-Jazeera wrote in August, government attacks ”have put Cizre, a long-defiant bastion of pro-Kurdish sentiment, back on the front lines of a conflict that has cost more than 30,000 lives since 1984.” Here’s some useful color from Vice:

Cizre has spent years on the fringes of war. The unremarkable-looking town of just over 100,000 lies on the Tigris River, around 30 miles from the tripoint where Turkey meets conflict-ravaged Syria and Iraq, and violence regularly strays over the national boundaries. Now, the cycle of airstrikes and renewed PKK attacks on Turkish troops threaten a return to the three-decade-long struggle between the two sides that claimed more than 40,000 lives. And here, residents feel like they’re at the heart of the fight.

“There’s a saying, ‘if there’s peace, it will start from Cizre, and if there’s war, it will start from here as well,’” the town’s co-mayor Leyla Imret, 28, told VICE News recently. “And we can say we have a civil war in Turkey.”

……………………Erdogan – with a straight face – accused the Assad government of “mercilessly killing” civilians. But what’s going on in Turkey is precisely the same thing that began to unfold in Syria in 2011. That is, certain elements in the country were subjected to a government crackdown when they agitated for change. In both cases, the government (Assad in Syria and Erdogan in Turkey) accused the other side of being “terrorists” and in both cases, civilian casulaties began to pile up.

Somehow though, Assad is a “butcher” and Erdogan is a democratically elected leader who is merely fighting to eradicate terrorist elements.

Needless to say, this is completely despicable at this point, especially considering the fact that the PKK’s Syrian affiliate (the YPG) are fighting the real “terrorists” (ISIS) across the border. A border which Turkey has made highly porous on purpose in order to allow for the easy flow of Sunni extremists (not to mention Islamic State oil) into and out of Syria.

Perhaps when NATO looks back four years from now on what may by then be a genocide, someone in Washington will have the decency to admit that a disastrous foreign policy combined with the blatant hypocrisy inherent in how the US characterizes Assad’s fight against rebels and Erdogan’s crackdown on the Kurds ultimately led to the death of half a million people in the Mid-East.

We close with the following quote from Engin Gur, a father of two who came to Istanbul from the southeastern district of Sur, and who spoke to The Times:

“What people here in the west do not realize is that we are one step away from a civil war.”

‘US accusations ring hallow as Russia turns tide of Syrian battle’_Dennis Etler

Russia Vindicated by Terrorist Surrenders in Syria

By Finian Cunningham

As Syrians gather in their capital Damascus to celebrate, there is a sense that the New Year will bring a measure of peace – the first time such hope has been felt over the past five years of war in the country.

Russia’s military intervention to help its Arab ally at the end of September has been the seminal event of the year. After three months of sustained Russian aerial operations in support of the Syrian Arab Army against an array of foreign-backed mercenaries, there is an unmistakable sense that the «terrorist backbone has been broken», as Russian President Vladimir Putin recently put it.

This past week sees several local truces being implemented across Syria with evacuation of militants from towns which they have held under armed siege. The civilian populations in these locations have been effectively held hostage as human shields by the militants, thus preventing Syrian army advances up to now. The Western media, such as US government-owned Voice of America, invert reality by claiming that it is the mercenaries themselves who have been under siege from the Syrian army instead of the fact that the mercenaries have been holding civilians in their midst as hostages, as was the case earlier in the siege of Homs, which was eventually also broken.

What has changed dramatically is the advent of Russian air power – over 5,000 sorties in three months – which has enabled the Syrian army to wipe out militant bases, oil smuggling and weapons supply routes in northern Syria along the Turkish border. This has left militants further inland to wither from the severance of supply lifelines. Hence the readiness now to accept truces and evacuation deals – under the auspices of the United Nations and International Committee for the Red Cross.

Thousands of anti-government insurgents are being bussed out of locations around Damascus, including Zabadani, al Qadam, Hajar al Aswad and Yarmouk.

An air strike reportedly by Russia forces killing the commander of the Jaish al-Islam militant group, Zahran Alloush, in the Damascus suburb of East Ghouta, dealt a devastating blow to morale among the self-styled jihadists. Alloush was reportedly killed along with several other commanders. That strike translates into «the game is up».

What is interesting is how the Western news media are reporting all this. Their reportage of the truces and evacuations are straining to minimize the context of these developments. This BBC report is typical, headlined: «Syria fighters’ evacuation from Zabadani ‘under way’».

The British state-owned broadcaster tells of hundreds of «fighters» being relocated from the town of Zabadani as if the development just magically materialized like a present donated by Santa Claus. What the BBC fails to inform is that that truce, as with several others around Damascus, has come about because of Russia’s strategic military intervention in Syria dealing crushing blows against the militant networks. The Western media have preoccupied themselves instead with claims from the US State Department that Russia’s military operations have either been propping up the «Assad regime» or allegedly targeting «moderate rebels» and civilians.

The disingenuous Western narrative, or more prosaically «propaganda», then, in turn, creates a conundrum when widespread truces and evacuations are being implemented. That obviously positive development signaling an end to conflict thanks to Russia’s military intervention has to be left unexplained or unacknowledged by the Western media because it negates all their previous pejorative narrative towards Russia and the Assad government.

Furthermore, the Western media are obliged to be coy about the exact identity of the «fighters» being evacuated. As noted already, the militants are variously described by the Western media in sanitized terms as «fighters» or «rebels». But more informative regional and local sources, such as Lebanon’s Al Manar, identify the brigades as belonging to the al-Qaeda-linked Islamic State group and al-Nusra Front. These are terror groups, as even defined by Washington and the European Union. So, the Western media has to, by necessity, censor itself from telling the truth by peddling half-truths and sly omissions.

The Jaish al-Islam (Army of Islam), whose commander was killed, is also integrated with the al-Qaeda terror network. Jaish al-Islam is funded and armed by Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and serves as a conduit for American CIA weapons to the more known terrorist outlets. Notably, Voice of America referred to the terror commander Zahran Alloush with the euphemistic cleansing term as a «rebel leader».

What the Russian-precipitated truces and termination of sieges is demonstrating is that the western side of Syria, from Daraa in the south, through Damascus and up to the northern Mediterranean Sea coast around Aleppo and Latakia, are infested with the terror brigades of IS and Al-Nusra and their myriad offshoots.

Western media have repeatedly accused Russia of conducting air strikes against «moderate rebels» and not the IS brigades, which they claim, were concentrated in the east of Syria. It is true that the IS is strongly based in eastern cities of Raqqa and Deir Ezzor, from where its oil smuggling operations are mounted.

Russia has stepped up its air strikes on IS smuggling routes in eastern Syria with devastating results. But also integral to the air operations is the cutting off of weapons routes in the northwest to fuel the insurgents along the entire western flank, including around Damascus.

The surrender of the various mercenary brigades and the breaking of sieges around Damascus is vindication of Russia’s military tactics; and also its narrative about the nature of the whole conflict in Syria.

The Western notion of «moderate rebels» and «extremists» is being exposed as the nonsense that it is. And so Western media are compelled to evacuate any meaningful context from their coverage of recent events in Syria.

Riad Haddad, Syria’s ambassador to Russia, spoke the plain truth in recent days when he said: «We are at a turning point in the Syrian army operations against terrorists – namely the transition from defense to attack… [because of] the effective work of the Russian air force in Syria». But the ambassador’s comments were scarcely, if at all, reported in the Western media. Simply because those words vindicate Russia’s military intervention and its general policy towards Syria.

Also missing or downplayed in the Western media coverage of the truces across Syria is the question of where the surrendering mercenaries are being evacuated to. They are not being bussed to other places inside Syria. That shows that there is no popular support for these insurgents. Despite copious Western media coverage contriving that the Syrian conflict is some kind of «civil war» between a despotic regime and a popular pro-democracy uprising, the fact that surrendering militants have no where to go inside Syria patently shows that these insurgents have no popular base.

In other words, this is a foreign-backed war on Syria; a covert war of aggression on a sovereign country utilizing terrorist proxy armies.

So where are the terrorist remnants being shipped to? According to several reports, the extremists are being given safe passage into Turkey, where they will receive repair and sanctuary from the President Recep Tayyip Erdogan – and no doubt subsidized by the European Union with its $3.5 billion in aid to Ankara to «take care of refugees».

Again, this is another indictment of the state-terrorist links of NATO-member Turkey, which the EU is recently giving special attention to for accession to the bloc.

Russia is not only vindicated in Syria. The Western governments, their media and their regional client regimes are being flushed out like the bandits on the ground in Syria.

If the UN-sponsored peace process due to start in the New Year succeeds to end the conflict in Syria, it will be largely down to Russia’s military campaign that has wiped out the terrorist proxies working on behalf of the Western criminal enterprise for regime change in that country.

Syrian army makes significant gains in Dara’a

Rebel movements in December 2015 – Final preparations for the New Year

“Daesh has nothing to do with Islam”

Russian Troops Celebrate New Year At Hmeymim Airbase Fort Russ – 1st January, 2016


Senior Nusra Commander Killed in Army’s Special Operation Northwest of Syria’s Hama
Syrian Army Intensifies Offensives on Militants’ Defense Lines North of Dara’a
Terrorists Withdraw From More Lands in Syria’s Hama Province
Senior Militant Commander Killed by Syrian Army in Hama Province
Syrian Forces Continue Crushing Militants East of Damascus
Shiites Meet Reps, Demand Probe, Zakzaky’s Release
Russia Underlines Terrorist Nature of Jeish al-Islam, Ahrar al-Sham Groups in Syria
Turkey Wants to Discredit Russia After Being Caught Smuggling ISIL Oil
Scores of Volunteer Forces Join Syrian Army in Fight


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