Middle East update: January 29 2018

SYRIA Airwars has produced its first civilian casualty count of the Afrin conflict: A new rolling assessment published by Airwars has so far tracked 24 claimed civilian casualty events within Afrin blamed on Turkey – and a further nine events attributed to Kurdish forces.   From the start of operations on January 20th to January… Continue reading Middle East update: January 29 2018

Middle East update: December 2-3 2017

YEMEN It’s been brewing for a while now, but the break between the Houthis and former President Ali Abdullah Saleh’s rebel faction now seems to be complete: Violent clashes between rival factions in Yemen’s rebel-held capital have continued for the fourth straight day as forces loyal to a former president and Iran-backed Houthi rebels faced… Continue reading Middle East update: December 2-3 2017

Middle East update: November 8 2017

SYRIA There’s been no official confirmation as I write this, but “pro-government sources” are saying that the Syrian army and its allied militias (including at least one–Kataib Hezbollah–that has crossed into Syria from Iraq) have captured al-Bukamal, the last ISIS position of any significance in eastern Syria and along the Syria-Iraq border. If true, this means… Continue reading Middle East update: November 8 2017

Middle East update: October 11 2017

IRAQ A suicide bomber struck a cafe and killed at least 11 people on Wednesday in the town of Heet, just northwest of Ramadi. The Iraqi commander in Hawijah officially declared the military operation there over yesterday. In the course of the fighting, which was over so quickly it almost doesn’t warrant being called a “campaign,”… Continue reading Middle East update: October 11 2017

Middle East update: September 23-25 2017

IRAQ Iraqi forces liberated Shirqat on Friday, which means Hawijah should be the next big ISIS stronghold to fall. Some accounts of Iraqi plans for the last phase of this conflict have treated Shirqat as a separate objective apart from Hawijah and western Anbar, but in truth Shirqat is close enough to Hawijah to consider… Continue reading Middle East update: September 23-25 2017

Middle East update: August 21-22 2017

PSA: This may very well be my last update until Monday. I’m traveling for the rest of the week and while ideally I would like to find time to pump out a little content while I’m doing so, realistically I don’t think it’s going to be possible. ISIS According to the University of Maryland’s Global Terrorism… Continue reading Middle East update: August 21-22 2017

Middle East update: May 31 2017

SYRIA Hopefully I’m wrong here, but it seems to me that–without getting a lot of attention–the potential for a dramatic escalation in southern Syria is growing by the day. Here’s the latest tiptoe in the direction of what could be a very dangerous line: Western-backed Syrian rebels said on Wednesday that Russian jets attacked them as… Continue reading Middle East update: May 31 2017