I swear I keep trying to stop blogging, but every time I think I’m out, Donald Trump pulls me back in. General Jim Mattis will be retiring, with distinction, at the end of February, after having served my Administration as Secretary of Defense for the past two years. During Jim’s tenure, tremendous progress has been… Continue reading What Wheels?
ASIA AFGHANISTAN A likely Taliban attack on a military post in Kunduz province killed at least 15 Afghan soldiers on Thursday, though some estimates had the toll as high as 30. A separate likely Taliban attack on a police checkpoint in Farah province left four police officers dead. Additionally, a US service member died of… Continue reading World 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
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
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
ASIA AFGHANISTAN Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a surprise stopover in Afghanistan on Monday on his way back from North Korea. He gushed about the success of the US operation there even as he had to fly in and out in a matter of a few hours under extremely heavy security and without making… Continue reading Asia/Africa update: July 9 2018
EUROPE REPUBLIC OF NORTH (?) MACEDONIA Several thousand people turned out in Skopje on Sunday in an opposition-organized protest against the Macedonian government’s deal to change the country’s name to the “Republic of North Macedonia” in order to appease the Greek government and potentially advance its membership bids for both the European Union and NATO.… Continue reading Europe/Americas update: July 7-8 2018