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Tag: Syria


Al-Qaida Captures Commander in Free Syrian Army, Which Has Ties to U.S.

The 30th Infantry Division of the moderate Free Syrian Army says the al-Qaida-linked Support Front captured one of its commanders and several troops Wednesday.

Posted on Aug 1, 2015 READ MORE



Turkey Ends Two-Year Cease-Fire With Attacks on Kurdish Militant Camps in Northern Iraq

Turkey’s air force is attacking Islamic State targets in Syria and Kurdistan Worker’s Party militants in northern Iraq, according to Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.

Posted on Jul 25, 2015 READ MORE



How The Washington Post Got Taken In by Syria’s Taliban

Making alliances of convenience is a perennial temptation in Washington, where policymakers often have more ambition than ethics or common sense.

Posted on Jul 14, 2015 READ MORE



Malala Opens a School for Syrian Refugee Girls on Her 18th Birthday

Activist and youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai has opened a school for Syrian girls in an informal refugee settlement in Lebanon’s Beka’a Valley.

Posted on Jul 13, 2015 READ MORE



Islamic State Deepens Its Roots by Offering Important Services

By providing key services such as infrastructure and transportation, the militant group has been able to tighten its grip on communities.

Posted on Jun 16, 2015 READ MORE



Islamic State Is Making a Fortune Selling Ancient Artifacts

The cultural war being waged by the militant group includes a lucrative trade in antiquities.

Posted on Jun 9, 2015 READ MORE


Palmyra

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Posted on May 25, 2015 READ MORE


Plan Bee

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Posted on May 23, 2015 READ MORE



Islamic State Beheaded Dozens in Palmyra, but How Strategic Is the City?

Nearly 500 people died in the campaign by the Islamic State group to take the Syrian city of Palmyra, including 49 who were executed before the fundamentalists reached the city center.

Posted on May 23, 2015 READ MORE



Historic Syrian City of Palmyra Falls to Islamic State

The ancient city is home to some of the world’s most beautiful and best-preserved ruins, which now may face destruction at the hand of the extremist group.

Posted on May 20, 2015 READ MORE



Migration Is an Act of Desperation, Not a Crime

Driven by war and poverty, millions of people are on the move, putting their lives at risk. But rather than explore the reasons, authorities lock them up or threaten them with force.

Posted on May 14, 2015 READ MORE



So Much for Liberté: France May Beef Up Domestic Spying Program

The shootings at the Charlie Hebdo headquarters in Paris last January drew comparisons to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and now the French government appears to be responding in a similar manner to its American counterpart by doubling down on surveillance.

Posted on May 5, 2015 READ MORE



Airstrike That Killed 52 Civilians Raises Questions About Obama’s Approach to Islamic State

The bombing of civilians actually helps Islamic State’s propaganda enormously. This policy in Syria needs reconsideration.

Posted on May 4, 2015 READ MORE



A Century of Women Working for Peace

One hundred years ago, more than 1,000 women gathered here in The Hague during World War I, demanding peace.

Posted on Apr 29, 2015 READ MORE



European Commission DG ECHO (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Islamic State’s Conquest of a Palestinian Refugee Camp in Syria Challenges Israeli Propaganda

Palestinian women and Christians and male secularists are at special risk in the Yarmouk refugee camp now that Islamic State has taken it over. But had they been living normally in their homes in what is now Israel, with their own state, they would not have been left vulnerable to this fate.

Posted on Apr 2, 2015 READ MORE



April Fools’ Day Will Be No Joke at the International Criminal Court

Palestine, as a new member state, will be able to ask for a probe into alleged war crimes in last summer’s Gaza war as well as into Israel’s West Bank settlement policy—whether Israel likes it or not.

Posted on Mar 31, 2015 READ MORE



Don’t Make a Bad Situation in the Middle East Worse

As gung-ho “experts” press President Obama to do this, that or the other in the Middle East, keep a simple rule in mind: Whatever the avid interventionists suggest probably won’t work—and surely will have unintended consequences.

Posted on Mar 31, 2015 READ MORE



A Game-Changer in Syrian War? (Video)

The provincial capital Idlib appears to have fallen completely to a Muslim fundamentalist coalition spearheaded by Ahrar al-Sham and the al-Qaida affiliate, the Support Front.

Posted on Mar 31, 2015 READ MORE



As al-Qaida Defeats ‘Moderate’ U.S. Allies in Syria, Will the U.S. Ally With al-Qaida?

President Obama’s impossibly complicated plan for dealing with the Islamic State group involves a de facto alliance with Iran in Iraq and training up a “third force,” essentially creating a new, “moderate” Free Syrian Army to attack al-Qaida and ISIL.

Posted on Mar 5, 2015 READ MORE



Syria: Islamic State Takes 150 Christians Captive as 3,000 Flee to Hasakah (Video)

Al-Nahar reported that dozens of Assyrian Christians have been abducted by the Islamic State group (also known as Daesh) in Hasakah Province, northeast Syria.

Posted on Feb 26, 2015 READ MORE



Islamic State Militants Abduct More Than 70 Christians in Syria

Members of the Islamic State group launched a broad raid on several villages in Syria starting early Monday, and by Tuesday the militant group had kidnapped more than 70 Christians.

Posted on Feb 24, 2015 READ MORE



Ashton Carter Succeeds Chuck Hagel as U.S. Defense Secretary

Just shy of three months since Chuck Hagel was obliged to vacate the position, the Obama administration has a new secretary of defense—and Ashton Carter has his work cut out for him.

Posted on Feb 12, 2015 READ MORE



The Terror We Give Is the Terror We Get

Both ISIS and the West revel in brutality that feeds the fever for war. The line that separates us from our enemies is technological, not moral. We are those we fight.

Posted on Feb 8, 2015 READ MORE


U.S. Policy Sows Conflict Across the Middle East and North Africa

The U.N. has warned of “total chaos” in Libya; the U.S.-backed regime in Egypt continues a crackdown on political opponents; and Iraq is coming off its deadliest month in years—all while the rise of the Islamic State continues there and in Syria. “Democracy Now!” surveys the wreckage in these places and others with Vijay Prashad.

Posted on Feb 3, 2015 READ MORE



Republican Scott Walker Pitches a Possible Syria War to Make Us Like Him

Likely Republican presidential candidate Scott Walker, Wisconsin’s governor, says he might favor sending U.S. ground troops to mount a conventional war against Daesh (Islamic State) in Syria or at least wouldn’t rule it out.

Posted on Feb 3, 2015 READ MORE



Airstrike in Syria: Is Israel Trying to Help al-Qaida Fight Against Hezbollah and Iran?

There are several questions around the Israeli helicopter gunship strike on Mazari` al-Amal in Syria’s Quneitra Province, which killed Hezbollah personnel and an Iranian general.

Posted on Jan 21, 2015 READ MORE



Nous Sommes Al Bab?

Cries of solidarity such as “Je Suis Charlie” don’t seem to apply when the U.S. kills civilians in Syria; an Oklahoma state senator wants to ban hoodies in public; meanwhile, for the first time in recent Egyptian history, two dozen men were acquitted of “charges of homosexuality.” These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jan 14, 2015 READ MORE



Gerry Lauzon (CC BY 2.0)

Paris Terrorist Was Radicalized by Bush’s Iraq War and Abu Ghraib Torture

Without Bush’s invasion and occupation of Iraq, it is not at all clear that Sharif Kouachi, one of the gunmen the French police are searching for, would have gotten involved in fundamentalist vigilanteism. And if he hadn’t, he would not have gone on to be a point man in murdering the staff of Charlie Hebdo along with 2 policemen.

Posted on Jan 8, 2015 READ MORE



Whatever Happened to Besieged Kurdish City of Kobane, Syria?

Kurdish forces, supported by Free Syrian Army troops and coalition air strikes, have largely recovered Kobane from rule by Daesh (called Islamic State in the West).

Posted on Jan 6, 2015 READ MORE



Did Iran Win 2014? Top 6 Iran Developments This Year

In 2014, Iran made news on a number of important fronts.

Posted on Dec 29, 2014 READ MORE



How Bashar al-Assad’s Regime Came Back in the Syrian Civil War in 2014

In the course of 2014, two major trends, long since visible in the Syrian civil war, were strengthened.

Posted on Dec 27, 2014 READ MORE



Pentagon: 3 Major ISIS Leaders Killed in Iraq

American forces have killed three high-ranking Islamic State leaders in Iraq in recent weeks, according to Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Posted on Dec 18, 2014 READ MORE



Enter the Dragon: China Offers Iraq Aerial Strikes on Islamic State

The list of powers eager to see Islamic State defeated grew larger this weekend with a report that China would intervene against IS from the air.

Posted on Dec 16, 2014 READ MORE



ISIS—the New Israel

ISIS is employing the same brutal tactics used in the late 1940s to create the Jewish state. As the Zionist guerrillas did, it is swiftly and perhaps permanently redrawing the map of the Middle East.

Posted on Dec 15, 2014 READ MORE



Over 100 Islamic State Fighters Killed in U.S. Airstrikes in Iraq

The U.S. war on Islamic State (also known as Daesh) in Iraq and Syria takes up less and less space in mainstream media. The group and its issues haven’t gone away, however.

Posted on Dec 8, 2014 READ MORE


Defense Secretary

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Posted on Dec 3, 2014 READ MORE



Iran-Iraq War 2.0? Iran Flies Bombing Raids on Islamic State Extremists in Iraq

The U.S. Pentagon is confirming that Iranian F-4 fighter jets have flown bombing missions against Daesh or the so-called ‘Islamic State Group’ in Iraq.

Posted on Dec 3, 2014 READ MORE



1.7 Million Syrian Refugee Food Crisis Risks Regional Instability

A funding crisis at the U.N.’s World Food Program has left more than 1.7 million Syrian refugees in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt without food vouchers as a “disastrous” winter approaches.

Posted on Dec 1, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Air Force/Master Sgt. Adrian Cadiz

Does Hagel’s Departure Pave the Way for Combat Troops to Iraq?

It’s a surprise to see President Obama actually fire someone. But I have to worry that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s forced departure may signal further expansion of U.S. military involvement in Iraq and Syria.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



As Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel Exits, Let’s Take a Look at an Islamic State Scorecard

I don’t see anyone talking about how the Defense Department’s response to Islamic State has gone.

Posted on Nov 25, 2014 READ MORE



Americans Are 64 Times More Likely to Be Murdered Than Die in an Act of Terrorism

The Institute for Economics and Peace in the U.K. has released a report on terrorism in 2013, which it maintains was substantially up. Conceptually, I have to critique the study.

Posted on Nov 18, 2014 READ MORE



Here Are Some of the Ways Islamic State Is Losing as It Lashes Out Like a Cornered Rat

Islamic State has not had a good month, suffering substantial setbacks in Iraq and watching with concern as the Damascus regime of Bashar al-Assad looks set to retake the major northern city of Aleppo.

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Aid Worker’s Death Confirmed as Islamic State Tries to ‘Mask a Week of Defeats’

American aid worker Peter Kassig is the latest hostage to be slain by Islamic State on video.

Posted on Nov 17, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Loses Refinery City in Iraq to Iraqi Army and Shiite Militias

This is perhaps the most significant military loss for Islamic State since it took 40 percent of Iraq in early June.

Posted on Nov 15, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Calls for Terror Attacks on Saudi Arabia

A voice recording has surfaced, attributed to Ibrahim al-Samarra’i, the leader of the brutal terrorist group Islamic State.

Posted on Nov 15, 2014 READ MORE



The Bases of War in the Middle East

There is almost no way to overemphasize how thoroughly the U.S. military now covers the Greater Middle East. After 35 years of base-building there, it’s long past time to look carefully at how this garrisoning affects the region, the U.S., and the world.

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 READ MORE



Shrinking the Empire: A Session on the Imperial Couch

What follows is a transcript of a therapy session between the American Empire and a psychiatrist whose name we at TomDispatch have agreed not to disclose. Normally we wouldn’t consider publishing such a private encounter, but the probative news value of the exchange is so obvious that we decided to make an exception.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



When Will the U.S. Admit to Boots on the Ground in Iraq?

In an age of weasel words and Orwellian diction, it would be refreshing to hear Mr. Obama call the recent escalation in Iraq what it is.

Posted on Nov 13, 2014 READ MORE



Why It Doesn’t Really Matter Whether Islamic State’s Leader Was Killed

Rumors are swirling that Islamic State leader Ibrahim al-Samarra’i (who goes by the nom de guerre Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi) was severely wounded and that some of his chief lieutenants were killed by a U.S. airstrike on a meeting of IS leaders Friday.

Posted on Nov 12, 2014 READ MORE



Why Is Obama Finally Seeking Congressional Approval for the War on Islamic State?

President Obama said Wednesday that he would seek congressional authorization for his war on the Islamic State after months of maintaining that the authorization of 2001 was still sufficient to underpin this effort. Why the about-face?

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 READ MORE


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