Middle East update: June 6 2018

SYRIA The Manbij Military Council, the Syrian Democratic Forces-created institution currently in charge of Manbij, says that it “will not accept” a Turkish presence in that town. This would appear to be a major complication to the roadmap to which the United States and Turkey just agreed on Monday for evacuating the YPG from the… Continue reading Middle East update: June 6 2018

Middle East update: June 5 2018

There are new things on the horizon here, at my Patreon site, and elsewhere. Please check it out! SYRIA The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says that a US-led coalition airstrike in Syria’s Hasakah province on Monday killed 11 civilians. The strike occurred near one of the small pockets in northeastern Syria still occupied by… Continue reading Middle East update: June 5 2018

Middle East update: June 4 2018

SYRIA US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu have reportedly reached agreement on a “roadmap” for the Kurdish-occupied Syrian town of Manbij after a meeting in Washington on Monday. It’s unclear what exactly the roadmap entails beyond a phased YPG withdrawal from Manbij–it’s hard to imagine Turkey agreeing to anything less–with… Continue reading Middle East update: June 4 2018

World update: May 30 2018

I’ll be out most of the late afternoon/evening so you’re getting a short midday update today. MIDDLE EAST SYRIA Turkish media declared on Wednesday that US and Turkish officials have reached a deal to remove the YPG from Manbij. Getting the Kurds out of Manbij would avoid a potential Turkish assault on that town, which… Continue reading World update: May 30 2018

Middle East update: May 9 2018

SYRIA This is very much a developing story, but the Israeli military says that Iranian forces in Syria launched some 20 rockets at Israeli positions in the Golan Heights on Wednesday night. There have been no reports of casualties (the Israelis say that their Iron Dome system intercepted several of the rockets) but this does… Continue reading Middle East update: May 9 2018

World update: March 9 2018

MIDDLE EAST SYRIA A United Nations official named Sajjad Malik, who has been involved with trying to get relief convoys into Eastern Ghouta this week, has apparently confirmed, at least to some extent, Russian claims that rebels are trying to prevent civilians from leaving via the “humanitarian corridor” Russia says it’s opening up during the… Continue reading World update: March 9 2018

Middle East update: February 16 2018

SYRIA As usual, civilians are taking the brunt of the pounding as Turkey tries to grind out more territory in Afrin: One-month-old Heyim Hassan was receiving treatment for a chest infection in the Afrin general hospital in northern Syria when a shell landed a few meters (feet) away. His panicked father whisked him out of… Continue reading Middle East update: February 16 2018