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: June 1 2018

I’m planning to do something crazy later today and have a nice evening with my family, so we’re shortening things up a bit today. If anything huge happens, please check back later for possible updates. MIDDLE EAST SYRIA According to Rudaw, the YPG is claiming to have attacked two Turkish military bases in Afrin on… Continue reading World update: June 1 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 4 2018

SYRIA The State Department announced on Friday that it’s suspending its funding for several civil society groups in Syria, including and most prominently the Syrian civil defense organization known as the “White Helmets”: Less than two months ago the State Department hosted members of the White Helmets at Foggy Bottom. At the time, the humanitarian… Continue reading Middle East update: May 4 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