Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
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Temnozor
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Post: #1221
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
What would that similar substance be? "Incontrovertible", kek.

"Whoever says that he "belongs to his time" is only saying that he agrees with the largest number of fools at that moment." - Nicolás Gómez Dávila

[Image: ecc9v9ru.jpg]
2017 Apr 20 15:02
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Surtr Kvlt
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Post: #1222
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
(2017 Apr 20 15:02)Temnozor Wrote:  What would that similar substance be? "Incontrovertible", kek.

Tabun or something like that?

totalitARYAN
2017 Apr 20 22:32
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Surtr Kvlt
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Post: #1223
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
Quote:Russia has called for a thorough investigation of the incident, which would include an on-site inspection in the rebel-held territory, before coming to any conclusions. Moscow believes that the incident may have been a false flag operation meant to provoke a US attack against Damascus.
https://www.rt.com/news/385430-opcw-sari...a-samples/

Quote:"So, for us, there was no gas attack and no gas depot, it was a false flag play just to justify the attack on the Shairat base. That's what happened," Assad said.
https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20170...alse-flag/

Now there was no depot, no gas attack. And falling back on the old false flag meme. lol russia, lol assad
Facepalm

totalitARYAN
2017 Apr 20 23:09
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Mustapaita
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Post: #1224
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
Quote:Evacuation is America’s Moral and Strategic Imperative in Idlib

Sam Heller

Syria’s northwest, centered on Idlib province, is the final redoubt of the country’s insurgents in their fight against the regime of Bashar al-Assad — their last castle.

That fight — between the Idlib-centric insurgency and the Assad regime — is not America’s fight, nor is it the fight of its Western allies.

Some have recently argued the United States and its allies should backstop Idlib’s rebels more or less indefinitely, both to defend civilians from the Assad regime and to maintain some non-extremist alternative. These proposals are untenable — unmoored from strategic logic and disconnected from the reality of Idlib’s rebellion, which is by now dominated by jihadists. The West should not sustain a jihadist-led section of the Syrian rebellion in perpetuity, to no obvious end and against a backdrop of ongoing, senseless civilian death. Instead, America and its Western allies ought to be ensuring that, when armed conflagration engulfs the northwest, civilians can get to safety.

Greater Idlib is Syria’s lone rebel stronghold that hasn’t been besieged or turned into a proxy-manned buffer zone by one of Syria’s neighbors. It represents the rebellion’s last real challenge to the regime, both because of its ready supply lines into Turkey and because it is dominated by jihadist and Islamist rebel factions that can’t be properly controlled by foreign backers. First among them is Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (or just “Tahrir al-Sham”), the super-sized successor to Syrian al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusrah.

The northwest is also jammed with vulnerable civilians. According to my own estimate based on the International Organization for Migration’s Needs and Population Monitoring data for March 2017, the rebel northwest — including Idlib and adjacent sections of Aleppo, Hama and Latakia provinces — holds in excess of 2.3 million people. That includes more than 900,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) who have fled the regime’s bombing and its creeping advance on the ground and now shelter in rented apartments or camps clustered along the Turkish border. Conditions for these people, especially the displaced, are bleak. Hundreds of thousands survive on relief aid such as food baskets and blankets. It’s a sort of half-life, as new generations of Syrians grow up with minimal education, little experience living under a state or the law, and few apparent prospects.

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 Apr 24 12:21
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Post: #1225
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
^Also, Al Qaeda's ideological leader Aiman al-Zawahiri has urged Idlib's jihadis to adopt guerilla tactics and not be overly concerned with holding territory in his recent audio message (transcript). This comes in the wake of heavy rebel losses in the current battles raging in northern Hama where the jihadists began a major offensive last month. It was halted and reversed and currently loyalist troops are pushing towards Idlib and towns that haven't been under government control since late 2015.

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 Apr 24 13:05
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Post: #1226
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
[Image: battle-for-w-mosul.gif]

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 Apr 24 17:29
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Aptrgangr
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Post: #1227
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
BREAKING: Former Israeli Defense Minister Confirms Israeli Collaboration with ISIS in Syria

In the midst of complaining about the Islamist threat to Israel and the world, Bibi Netanyahu conveniently forgets that his own country enjoys a tacit alliance with ISIS in Syria. It is an alliance of convenience to be sure and one that’s not boasted about by either party. But is not terribly different from one than Israel enjoys with its other Muslim allies like Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States. (...)

https://www.richardsilverstein.com/2017/...sis-syria/


Ya’alon: I would prefer Islamic State to Iran in SyriaDefense minister says jihadists don’t ‘have capabilities’ of Islamic Republic, which he brands Israel’s ‘greatest enemy’
http://www.timesofisrael.com/yaalon-i-wo...-in-syria/

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2017 Apr 24 21:53
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Surtr Kvlt
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Post: #1228
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
(2017 Apr 24 17:29)Mustapaita Wrote:  [Image: battle-for-w-mosul.gif]

Western air forces looking good

totalitARYAN
2017 Apr 25 19:10
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Post: #1229
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
I was reading a piece on Sunni identity and politics in Iraq (Disarray Among Iraqi Sunnis Yields Opportunity for Nationalism) and I was struck by an interesting parallel with European societies:

Quote:“Sunni marginalization” has become a staple in political discussions involving Iraq. The phrase itself is misleading; Sunnis have full representation in the Iraqi Parliament and government based on a functional, if non-ideal, democracy that did not deny Sunnis their voting rights. The “lack” of political representation has never been a grievance of the Sunni population. In a sense, it appears “marginalization” reflects an underlying lack of a coherent Sunni political identity. The failure to mobilize a form of unity, or unique set of characteristics, ideals, and goals that distinguish Sunnis from other ethnic groups in the aftermath of regime change in Iraq created a feeling of isolation. From a Sunni perspective, the “marji’ya” (the leading Shi’a clerics, or “references,” who possess widespread persuasive power and serve as a central clearinghouse for religious, and often political, questions) united Shi’a—albeit nominally—under a historically recognized and revered institution, offering the religious majority a single voice.

The Kurds rallied behind Masoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani, both figures with decades of struggle against Saddam for a greater Kurdish purpose. The two rivals were able to cooperate on matters of wider Kurdish importance after 2003. Sunnis, however, lacked the compelling leadership and a clear vision of how to engage with eager, proud emerging identities. Some fourteen years later, this has not changed. Another important aspect Sunnis did not comprehend back in 2003, and many still do not today, is that divisions do exist among other groups. The Kurdish and Shi’a political leadership took shape during decades of resistance to Saddam Hussein’s Baathist regime; in the process they forged considerable common ground in political opposition, enabling them to cooperate on many matters after Saddam’s fall.

I think there are clear similarities when it comes to European national and cultural identities. There is a clear feeling of isolation, abandonment and marginalisation that rising nationalist sentiment attempts to address just sect-based sunni-identity politics attempts to address the situation of Iraqi Sunnis. Yet it would be silly to suggest that Europeans are somehow politically disenfranchised (or any more disenfranchised than other groups). As I read on, the parallel became even clearer and was even acknowledged by a scholar quoted in the article:

Quote:The most important competing trends within the Sunni community after the fall of Saddam pitted Arab nationalists against Islamists. Prior to the removal of Saddam, Sunni Arab Iraqis were part of a larger regional Arab Nationalist identity that was in sync with both the concept of the “Arab homeland” as well as sentiments of nominally secular nationalism; they thus lacked the need of a sect-based identity. Sunni Arabs who placed more relevance on religion were the minority that subscribed to the Muslim Brotherhood leaning ideas of pan-Islamism. It should come as no surprise that the latter group, aided by the infamous Faith Campaign of the 1990s, was well prepared when Saddam’s regime collapsed, and was the most notorious among Sunnis in demanding a sect-based identity.

Haddad draws an interesting parallel between the identities of Sunni Arabs and “white” people in the West:

It has been argued that previously white identity was “raceless” in that white people did not see themselves as having a race but, rather, they were “simply people.” They believed that their viewpoint was not a white one but a “universally valid one—‘the truth’—what everyone knows.” As such, white becomes the standard, the norm so to speak, against which all others are differentiated.

Quote:...Sunnis enjoyed a certain amount of religious and social freedom as long as their practices and rituals mirrored what the regime had set as the norm—a privilege Shiites were undoubtedly denied for decades and Sunnis struggle to acknowledge. On the other hand, Sunnis suffered under Saddam, as did all Iraqis. All Iraqis were subjected to Saddam’s self-centric rule. Economic sanctions were certainly not distributed based on race or sect. The perception of privilege, much in like rural America, is based on financial comfort and social status; aspects that were not exclusive to Sunni communities in Iraq. Media hardly made references to Shi’a and religious education avoided mentioning sects. Sunnis believe these policies spared the country sectarian divisions without comprehending that empowering the sectarian minority was the only outcome. “There was no Sunni or Shi’a affiliations before 2003” is a common phrase. When stated by a Sunni, it is to some extent the equivalent to “All lives matter” in the United States. Like in the West, framing the inability to acknowledge privileges as “supremacy” is often met with hostile reactions.

The article goes on explaining the emergence of the post-Saddam Sunni identity politics. Naturally Iraq and Europe/USA are very different places but I thought this was very interesting nonetheless. The author suggests sunnis re-connect with "sect-free Iraqi nationalism" but that seems to me like wishful thinking if the Kurds and Shiites don't do the same, as they probably won't. That means "sect-free nationalism" becomes specifically Sunni and not sect-free at all.

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 Apr 28 13:49
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Post: #1230
RE: Civil War in Iraq and as-Sham
Aron Lund explains the mini civil war being fought among rebel factions in East Ghouta.

Quote:Syria: East Ghouta Turns on Itself, Again

Yet again, infighting between the opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has played straight into his hands. On April 28, yet another violent chapter was opened in the slow-rolling collapse of the insurgency around the Syrian capital, in a region known as the East Ghouta.

Early in 2016, this suburban-rural enclave broke apart in chaotic infighting, leaving hundreds of rebel combatants dead at the hands of their supposed brothers-in-arms and dividing the local insurgency neatly down the middle. The result was as predictable as it was disastrous for the insurgency: since then, Assad’s government has retaken around half of the enclave’s territory.

A year later to the day, the rebels have returned to fighting amongst themselves. If the renewed internecine conflict between Islamist insurgent groups is not brought under control, it may well give the Syrian government what it needs to finally crush the last rebel enclave near Damascus.

The rest

"Devil, I am devil." ― Pekka Siitoin
2017 May 01 23:25
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