Middle East update: July 6 2018

SYRIA While there may be some mopping up to be done, Daraa province is now back in Bashar al-Assad’s hands. Rebels there agreed on Friday to surrender their medium and heavy weapons and to either give up fighting or be relocated to Idlib province. As a result, the Syrian government regained control over its important… Continue reading Middle East update: July 6 2018

Middle East update: April 16 2018

SYRIA BREAKING: Somebody fired some missiles at a Syrian air base near Homs late Monday night. State media says they were all shot down by Syrian air defenses, but who knows. Most likely this was Israel though I suppose at this point you can’t rule anything out. The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons… Continue reading Middle East update: April 16 2018

Middle East update: April 11 2018

SYRIA Russia vows to shoot down any and all missiles fired at Syria. Get ready Russia, because they will be coming, nice and new and “smart!” You shouldn’t be partners with a Gas Killing Animal who kills his people and enjoys it! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 11, 2018 I’m definitely not in the… Continue reading Middle East update: April 11 2018

Middle East update: December 13 2017

IRAQ Regular readers will know what a big fan I am of Patrick Wing’s “Musings on Iraq” blog, which does invaluable work digesting Iraqi media for English-speaking audiences. Wing today is arguing that the Iraqis fudged the completion of their Jazeera operation, the effort to sweep the western Anbar desert for remaining ISIS members, to… Continue reading Middle East update: December 13 2017

Middle East update: November 4-5 2017

Where to even begin. IRAQ With Qaim under control, the Iraqi plan is to move back east along the Euphrates and take the town of Rawa while simultaneously clearing out the rest of the Syrian border area. The focus for now seems to be back on ISIS, though conflict with the Kurds could flare up… Continue reading Middle East update: November 4-5 2017

Middle East update: October 4-5 2017

IRAQ Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said Thursday that Iraqi forces have liberated the town of Hawijah itself, leaving just a small enclave of villages east of the town still in ISIS’s hands. You can kind of see where things are at in the Iraqi Joint Operations Command’s map, below: pic.twitter.com/6vlwcalbgo — خلية الاعلام الحربي… Continue reading Middle East update: October 4-5 2017

Middle East update: October 3 2017

IRAQ Former Iraqi President Jalal Talabani died on Tuesday about a month shy of his 84th birthday. A high-ranking member of the Barzani family’s Kurdistan Democratic Party, Talabani split from the KDP in 1975 to found the leftist Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. While they’re currently collaborating in a unity government of sorts, the PUK remains… Continue reading Middle East update: October 3 2017