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December 22, 2014
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Tag: Syria


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



American Weapons Provided to Syrian Rebels Fall into al-Qaeda’s Hands

The al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra (the Succor Front) not only took the territory of the moderate Muslim Syria Revolutionaries Front this weekend, it also polished off the Movement of the Resolute.

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 READ MORE



Building an Escalation Machine

Sometimes it seemed that only two issues mattered in the midterm election campaigns just ended: ISIS and Ebola. Think of them as the two horsemen of the present American apocalypse. And count on this: Oppositional pressure to escalate will be a significant factor in Washington “debates” in the last years of the Obama administration.

Posted on Nov 6, 2014 READ MORE



Big Setback for the Obama Administration’s Syria Policy as Moderate Stronghold Falls to al-Qaeda

The al-Qaeda affiliate Succor Front (Jabhat al-Nusra) took the town of Deir Sunbul and its environs this weekend away from the Syria Revolutionaries Front, a relatively secular-minded group viewed as “moderates” by the United States.

Posted on Nov 4, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Strives Without End

Unembedded Middle East reporter Patrick Cockburn describes the political and economic facts that enable Isis to continue its sweep through Iraq and Syria, and explains why a defeat for the group in the Syrian city of Kobani would not be the beginning of its end.

Posted on Nov 1, 2014 READ MORE


Iraq Boots

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Posted on Oct 31, 2014 READ MORE



Turkey Allows Kurdish Peshmerga Paramilitary Troops to Cross to Kobane

Turkish intelligence is facilitating the crossing of a couple hundred paramilitary troops (Peshmerga) from Iraqi Kurdistan to the Turkish town of Suruç, 16 kilometers from the Syrian border.

Posted on Oct 29, 2014 READ MORE



Is the Sunni-Shiite Slaughter at Jurf al-Sakhr in Iraq Really a U.S. Victory?

Apparent good news was announced on Sunday in the fight against the extremist Islamic State organization: The Iraqi army, backed by fundamentalist Shiite militias, managed to take the village of Jurf al-Sakhr, southwest of Baghdad, from IS fighters.

Posted on Oct 28, 2014 READ MORE


Smart Bomb

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Posted on Oct 26, 2014 READ MORE


Fear

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Posted on Oct 25, 2014 READ MORE



Is Egypt Going the Way of Syria?

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi has declared a state of emergency for 3 months in parts of the province of North Sinai after two attacks by Muslim radical groups in that province left 30 Egyptian soldiers dead.

Posted on Oct 25, 2014 READ MORE



Is This the End of National Sovereignty in the Middle East?

The legislature of the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (a super-province of Iraq) has voted to send Kurdistan forces to the Syrian Kurdish city of Kobane to help it fight off a concerted attack by Islamic State.

Posted on Oct 23, 2014 READ MORE



Iran Proposes an Axis Against Islamic State to Iraq as an Alternative to the U.S. Coalition

Al-Zaman reports that Iranian President Hasan Rowhani has proposed to visiting Iraqi Prime Minister Haydar al-Abadi an anti-IS axis including Syria, Lebanon and Iraq that would be led by Iran, as an alternative to the U.S.-led coalition proposed by President Barack Obama.

Posted on Oct 22, 2014 READ MORE



U.S. Jets Airdropped Supplies for Kurds Fighting in Kobane Against Turkey’s Wishes

In a step that over-ruled America’s Turkish NATO ally, U.S. jets dropped food, first aid and weaponry into the besieged Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane on Monday morning.

Posted on Oct 21, 2014 READ MORE



Shells Land in Turkey as Kurds Fight Off Islamic State Forces in Kobane

Kurdish forces at Kobane (Ayn al-Arab) on Saturday fought off an assault by Islamic State that sought to cut the city off from Turkey and completely surround it, according to an Al-Jazeera reporter on the scene.

Posted on Oct 20, 2014 READ MORE



Seven Worst-Case Scenarios in the Battle With Islamic State

The U.S. is again at war in the Middle East, bombing freely across Iraq and Syria and searching desperately for some non-American boots to put on the ground. Here are seven worst-case scenarios in a part of the world where the worst case has regularly been the best that’s on offer.

Posted on Oct 17, 2014 READ MORE


Chris Hedges Takes On the ‘Global Culture of Violence’

On Sept. 28, Chris Hedges spoke at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture’s Charley Horwitz Platform on the pervasive violence that characterizes our era and offered possible solutions.

Posted on Oct 15, 2014 READ MORE



Will Islamic State Take Baghdad Next?

According to Al-Jazeera sources, Islamic State has completed the taking of Hit district in the al-Anbar Province of Iraq.

Posted on Oct 15, 2014 READ MORE



White House/Pete Souza

White House Islamic State Strategy Amounts to Wishful Thinking

The notion that Iraq will “destroy” Islamic State at American behest is an illusion, and so is the notion that the coalition just formed can do it.

Posted on Oct 14, 2014 READ MORE



The Wider Appeal of Islamic State and Sunni Grievances

In a worrisome development, radicals throughout the region are rallying to the so-called Islamic State, which is actually just a bunch of armed thugs and brigands.

Posted on Oct 13, 2014 READ MORE


The Middle East

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Posted on Oct 12, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Has Taken a Third of Strategic Kobani in Syria but Lost Tuz Khurmato in Iraq

Al-Khalij reports that the Syrian Human Rights Observatory says Islamic State fighters are now in one third of the Syrian Kurdish city of Kobani.

Posted on Oct 11, 2014 READ MORE


Iraqi Journalist Who Embedded With Shiites: U.S. Strategy Will Fail

Two months after the United States began airstrikes in Iraq that expanded to Syria, Islamic State is poised to gain control of more than half of Syria’s border with Turkey. Independent reporter Patrick Cockburn and Iraqi Guardian journalist Ghaith Abdul-Ahad discuss the “massive military failure” of the response strategy.

Posted on Oct 9, 2014 READ MORE



Here’s How the U.S., China and Russia Are Supplying Islamic State’s Weapons

The U.S. is preparing to send more military supplies to the Middle East to fight Islamic State at the same time a report has revealed that many of the radical group’s weapons come from America. So how can we be sure the deadly equipment we’re sending won’t end up in the same hands?

Posted on Oct 8, 2014 READ MORE



The Last Days of Kobani Loom as IS Closes In on Syrian Kurds With Murder on Its Mind

Islamic State fighters have advanced into the Kurdish Syrian city of Kobani with fighting in the streets as Kurds resist, according to the pan-Arab daily al-Hayat.

Posted on Oct 8, 2014 READ MORE



Pan-Mideast War Escalates as IS and al-Qaida Attack Hezbollah Outposts Near the Lebanese Border

There hasn’t been a regional war of this scope since the Gulf War.

Posted on Oct 7, 2014 READ MORE


Friend or Foe

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Posted on Oct 6, 2014 READ MORE



Islamic State Still Taking Towns in Iraq’s Al-Anbar as Coalition Airstrikes Are Delayed

The pan-Arab London daily Al-Hayat [Life] reported Sunday that Islamic State is still expanding its sway in towns in Iraq’s western al-Anbar Province, having just taken Kubaisah in the district of Hit on Friday into Saturday, two days after the district capital of Hit fell to them.

Posted on Oct 6, 2014 READ MORE


Sorry Boy

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Posted on Oct 5, 2014 READ MORE



The Alamo of the Kurds: Kobane Near Falling to Islamic State

Ismat Sheikh, commander of the Kurdish forces at the border town of Kobane (Ain al-Arab) that is besieged by Islamic State tanks and artillery, says that he expects massacres of its inhabitants if it falls to the Sunni Arab extremists.

Posted on Oct 4, 2014 READ MORE



Top 7 Surprising Reasons Turkey Is Entering War on Islamic State

The Turkish parliament voted by a large margin Thursday to allow Turkish troops to make incursions into neighboring countries if necessary to defeat the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Posted on Oct 4, 2014 READ MORE



Conflict and Looting Endangers Syria’s Precious Heritage

The country’s ongoing civil war has put the physical remains of its ancient history at risk of destruction.

Posted on Oct 3, 2014 READ MORE


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