Middle East update: July 12 2018

SYRIA The Syrian military seized the city of Daraa on Thursday, symbolically flying the Syrian flag in the middle of town in commemoration. Daraa is an important tactical victory–you can’t control southwestern Syria without it, obviously. But it may be an even bigger symbolic victory, because it was in Daraa in the spring of 2011… Continue reading Middle East update: July 12 2018

World update: July 11 2018

It’s another hectic day at HQ so I’m going to try to be briefer and earlier than usual again. MIDDLE EAST SYRIA Syrian and Russian attention in Daraa province has focused on the Yarmouk Basin, where an ISIS affiliate called Jaysh Khalid ibn al-Walid has been ensconced since 2014. ISIS and its subdivisions aren’t covered under… Continue reading World update: July 11 2018

World update: July 10 2018

It’s been a long day so if it’s OK with you I’m going to roll through these updates with a minimum of banter. MIDDLE EAST SYRIA Rebels in Daraa city say they’ve begun surrender talks with Russian officials in hopes of staving off a full Syrian-Russian offensive. The inevitable recovery of Daraa will be a… Continue reading World update: July 10 2018

Middle East update: July 9 2018

SYRIA Syrian military forces have reportedly surrounded and besieged rebel-held parts of Daraa city. These rebels have presumably rejected the ceasefire deals that rebels in other parts of Daraa province have struck. Syrian forces are also pressuring Jaysh Khalid ibn al-Walid, a hardline group with links to ISIS that controls some territory in Daraa province.… Continue reading Middle East update: July 9 2018

Middle East update: July 7-8 2018

SYRIA According to Syrian state media, Israeli planes fired missiles at the T4 airbase outside of Homs on Sunday night. That base is used by Iranian personnel and the Israelis have attacked it previously. The Syrian reports say that their air defenses “thwarted” the attack, shooting down several Israeli missiles and hiting one Israeli aircraft,… Continue reading Middle East update: July 7-8 2018

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: July 5 2018

Well, we’re back. As usual when I’ve been gone for a while this update will mostly stick to things that happened today with some pieces I flagged while I was gone in there for good measure. It will probably be long and there’s not much I can do about that. SYRIA Owing to a combination… Continue reading Middle East update: July 5 2018