Syrian/Hizballah may call up Russian air strikes as cooperation deepens

 

Russian air crews in Syria are under new orders to respond directly and immediately to Iranian and Syrian demands for air bombardments, without confirmation from the high commands in Latakia or Moscow.

This has enormously empowered Syrian and Hizballah officers on the ground for taking the war into their own hands. It led directly to Russian planes suddenly bombing a pro-US Syrian force in the Deir ez-Zour province of eastern Syria on Saturday, Sept. 16, and accounts for Moscow’s repudiation of the attack after its confirmation by the Pentagon. Continue reading

Iran/Hizballah noose tightens around Israel

Nikki Haley, the US Ambassador to the UN, challenged the international community to hold Iran to account on Thursday, Aug. 31, after the Islamic Republic showed its “true colors” by restoring its ties with the Palestinian extremist Hamas. In her statement, she described as “stunning” the Hamas leader’s boast that Tehran is again the biggest provider of money and arms. The breach between them followed the terrorist group’s refusal to side with Bashar Assad in the Syrian civil war.

“Iran must decide whether it wants to be a member of the community of nations that can be expected to take its international obligations seriously, or whether it wants to be the leader of a jihadist terrorist movement. It cannot be both,” Haley said in her statement. Continue reading

US troops in Syria battle anti-Assad rebels once funded by the CIA

 

American troops deployed in Syria have exchanged fire with rebels that were until recently supported by the United States Central Intelligence Agency. In 2013, soon after the outbreak of the Syrian Civil War, the then-US President Barack Obama instructed the Central Intelligence Agency to provide covert support to fighters in Syria. Acting on the president’s directive, the CIA promptly joined forces with spy agencies from Britain, France, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, to assist fighters affiliated with the Free Syrian Army. At that time, Washington saw the Free Syrian Army and forces affiliated with it as ideologically moderate. It also agreed with the group’s main aim, which was to topple the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Continue reading

Report: Obama Admin Hid Intel to Push Iran Nuke Deal

Report: Obama Admin Hid Intel to Push Iran Nuke Deal

Hezbollah and Iranian fighters have widely infiltrated Syria and taken up arms in support of Bashar al-Assad’s regime, and were ferried into the country using Iran’s commercial airline in violation of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

 

According to a new report by The Washington Free Beacon, Iran has been illegally using its commercial airline, Iran Air, to ferry fighters into Syria, where they have taken up arms in defense of Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Continue reading

Iran Caught Shipping Soldiers to Syria on Commercial Flights in Violation of Nuclear Deal

 

Congress demands investigation, imposition of new sanctions

New photographs obtained by congressional leaders show Iran shipping militant soldiers to Syria on commercial airline flights, a move that violates the landmark nuclear agreement and has sparked calls from U.S. lawmakers for a formal investigation by the Trump administration, the Washington Free Beacon has learned.

Photographs published by a Washington, D.C., think-tank and provided to Congress show Iran using its flagship commercial carrier, Iran Air, to ferry militants to Syria, where they have joined the fight against U.S. forces in the region. Continue reading

Iran extends reach with fight for land link to Mediterranean

In this Nov. 22, 2013 file photo, Iraqi and Lebanese Shiite fighters from a group called the Hussein Brigade use a helmet to draw sniper fire, during clashes with the Sunni-dominated Free Syrian Army, in the town of Hejeira, near Damascus, Syria. (AP Photo/Jaber al-Helo, File)

 

Islamic Republic’s regional expansion raises concern in Jerusalem of Tehran’s efforts ‘to entrench itself militarily on Israel’s border’

BEIRUT (AP) — Thousands of Iranian-backed fighters in Syria’s central desert region are advancing east, bringing Tehran closer to its goal of securing a corridor from its border, through Iraq and all the way to the Mediterranean and providing it unhindered land access to its allies in Syria and Lebanon for the first time.

The land route would be the biggest prize yet for Iran in its involvement in Syria’s six-year-old civil war. Continue reading

Russia: Who Stole What For North Korea

Over the weekend Russia made a point of revealing another of their post-Cold War EW (electronic warfare) aircraft. This one is called the Il-22PP and described as an airborne electronic jammer that can block all manner of signals but particularly the digital ones (like Link 16) favored by Western warplanes. The Il-22PP was also described as being able to protect itself from anti-radiation missiles, like the American AGM-88. Since late 2015 Russia has revealed (to the public) the existence of other post-Cold War electronic warfare aircraft by using them in Syria or over Ukraine. Not so the Il-22PP, at least not yet. Continue reading

Russia To Stay In Syria For The Next 50 Years

While the Trump administration appears set to withdraw US troops from Syria in the not too distant future, as hinted by the recent decision to reverse the Obama-era decision to stop arming “moderate rebels” fighting the Assad regime, Vladimir Putin has a slightly different strategic vision for the proxy war-torn nation. Continue reading

“Pushing Back” Iran

 

On both the left and the right, there is a consensus in Washington that the United States needs to “push back” against the Islamic Republic’s nefarious actions in the Levant, Iraq, and Yemen. The clerical regime largely controls the ground war in Syria: Tehran’s foreign Shiite militias, imported from Lebanon, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, and Iranian-directed native forces lead the battle against the Sunni insurrection. In Iraq, the Islamic Republic has energetically encouraged sectarian conflict, aiding politicians and militias that have taken a hardline toward political compromise with Sunnis. Iraqi members of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps have become senior officials in the government. And in Yemen, Iran has backed the Shiite Houthis in their campaign to dominate the country. What once would have seemed far-fetched—Tehran trying to develop a Lebanese Hezbollah-like movement among Yemen’s “Fiver” Zaydi Shiites, who have never been close to the “Twelver” Jafaris of Iran—is now conceivable. If such Shiite militancy becomes anchored in the south of the peninsula, Tehran will surely try to aim it northward toward the badly oppressed Shiites of Bahrain and the oil-rich Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia. Continue reading

Syria-North Korea missile cooperation: Assad said to visit top-secret base

The facility reportedly manufactures missiles based on Iran’s Fateh 110 model. / AFP

 

Syria, with the cooperation of North Korea and Russia, is constructing a secret facility to manufacture long-range missiles in a rural area outside the port city of Tartus, a Syrian opposition website reported. Continue reading

Iran, China Conduct Joint Naval Drills

Last summer, when the Syrian conflict was near its peak under the Obama administration, China unexpectedly warned it was ready to enter the proxy war when in a stunning announcement, Xinhua reported that Beijing was prepared to side with Syria and Russia, against the US-led alliance, and that Xi and Assad had agreed that the Chinese military will have closer ties with Syria and provide humanitarian aid to the civil war torn nation.

A high-ranking People’s Liberation Army officer also said that the training of Syrian personnel by Chinese instructors has also been discussed: the Director of the Office for International Military Cooperation of China’s Central Military Commission, Guan Youfei, arrived in Damascus on Tuesday for talks with Syrian Defense Minister Fahad Jassim al-Freij, Xinhua added. Guan said China had consistently played a positive role in pushing for a political resolution in Syria. “China and Syria’s militaries have a traditionally friendly relationship, and China’s military is willing to keep strengthening exchanges and cooperation with Syria’s military,” Xinhua quoted Guan. Continue reading

New US base in S. Syria for tussle over control

 

In readiness for a prospective showdown for control of southeast Syria, US Special Forces have set up a forward base at Al-Zukf in the Syrian Desert, DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources report. The location is 70km northwest of the Syrian-Iraqi-Jordanian border triangle and the Al Tanf crossing, which is controlled by US, Western allied and Jordanian special forces, together with a US-trained Syrian rebel unit, which calls itself the Revolutionary Commando. Continue reading

U.S. lawmakers say Iran eyes military base near Syria-Israel border

Iran military leaders. Teheran wants to establish a military base in Syria near the Jordan or Israel border, U.S. lawmakers said. / Fars via AFP

 

Iran is looking to establish a permanent military presence in Syria and is eyeing a potential base near the Syrian border with Israel or Jordan, two U.S. lawmakers said.

“A permanent Iranian military base in Syria … would increase Iran’s operational capacity to inflict serious damage against two of our closest allies in the region,” Rep. Peter Roskam, Illinois Republican, and Rep. Ted Deutch, Florida Democrat, wrote in a letter to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

The lawmakers’ warning comes as a Senate panel on May 25 approved new U.S. sanctions targeting Iran’s support for international terrorism and its ballistic missile program, the first move to punish Teheran since the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear accord went into effect. Continue reading

Memo Signed By Assad Transfers Command And Financial Responsibility For Syrian Militias To Iran

 

Throughout the Syria war, Iran has played a central role in establishing the Syrian militias operating alongside the Syrian regime’s regular army and army reserves. These militias are modeled after the Iranian Basij.[1] Recently, a memo was circulated on Facebook ostensibly proving that the Syrian regime is transferring command and financial responsibility for some of these militias to Iran – reflecting the extent of Iran’s control in Syria.

The memo, which is dated April 11, 2017 and bears the signature of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in his capacity as commander in-chief of the Syrian armed forces, approves the recommendations of a committee responsible for regulating the activity of the armed Syrian forces operating in conjunction with Iran on Syrian territory.

The committee’s recommendations included a call for organizing the nearly 90,000-man-strong armed Syrian forces working in conjunction with Iran under an umbrella framework called the Local Defense Brigades, to operate across Syria under Iranian command and financial responsibility, “until the end of the crisis in Syria or until further notice.” Continue reading

Turkey Turns To Russia’s Most Advanced Air Defense System Instead Of Buying From NATO

Turkey has declared itself an enemy of not only NATO by purchasing Chinese military hardware, but an enemy of America when it decided to hold American soldiers hostage at Incirlik airbase… and more than once.

What Turkey is now doing is strengthening their defense positions in preparation of jumping ship from the western alliance and in turn jumping on board the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, Russia and China’s world-war axis and counterweight to NATO and the West.

For further information, see the following articles:

US combat units on “high alert” after Incirlik surrounded

TURKEY TO U.S.: “Give Turkey Your Nuclear Weapons at Incirlik Air Base or Turkey will Take Them!”

Reports Turkish troops have sealed off Incirlik US/NATO nuclear air base

Erdogan locks US airmen, nuclear arms in Incirlik

Ankara threatens to ground US fighters at key Turkish air base

U.S. Nukes at Turkish Airbase at Risk of Being Seized by ‘Hostile Forces,’ Report Says

Turkey could choose China’s missile defense system by end of year: report

Ankara’s move to Chinese air systems appals NATO allies

 

Russian S-400 Triumph medium-range and long-range surface-to-air missile systems drive during the Victory Day parade, marking the 71st anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two, at Red Square in Moscow, Russia, May 9, 2016. REUTERS/Grigory Dukor

 

NATO ally Turkey is in the midst of finalizing a deal with Russia to purchase the S-400 air defense system, as tensions between the U.S.-European alliance and the Kremlin are reaching a fever pitch.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan are expected to discuss the S-400 contract during a visit to Sochi, Russia, on May 3, according to Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Isik.

“I suppose after Erdogan’s talks with Putin a joint decision will be made on further steps for purchasing Russia’s missile system,” said Isik, as quoted in Russia’s TASS news agency Monday. Continue reading