Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, 2.5 million people.
Reporting from inside Aleppo makes the case for a government offensive, soon.
Shortly after the Syrian government victory at Qusayr, Operation Northern Storm was announced. In conjunction with Hezbollah fighters, the Syrian Arab Army would attack the rebel-controlled section of Syria’s largest city within days of a [...]
CNN, By Susannah Cullinane, November 23
Turkey has declared Egypt’s envoy to Ankara persona non grata in response to Cairo’s decision to expel the Turkish ambassador, the Turkish Ministry of Foreign affairs announced Saturday.
The Egyptian government had earlier summoned Turkey’s ambassador to inform him he was persona non grata and to ask him to [...]
A bomb went off by the Iranian consulate in Beirut:
Two explosions, at least one caused by a suicide bomber, rocked Iran’s embassy in Lebanon on Tuesday, killing at least 23 people, including an Iranian cultural attaché, and hurling bodies, cars and debris across the street.
A Lebanese-based al Qaeda-linked group known as the Abdullah [...]
Prime Minister Erdogan, Turkey DonkeyHotey
One of the first initiatives of Prime Minister Recep Erdogan was a foreign policy based on “zero problems with neighbors.” From his selection as Prime Minister in 2003, Erdogan led efforts to resolve Iran’s conflicts with the West over the Iranian nuclear program. The regime also formed a tight [...]
Spiegel Online – The protests that erupted in Turkey in May 2013 saw a local environmental protest bloom into a nationwide pro-democracy movement. A new political party has formed to channel this dissatisfaction into political power, but the hurdles to success are high.
It will be interesting to see what comes of this, and what [...]
Iraqi prime minister Maliki came to Washington last week to seek help against the bombing campaign in his country. The campaign has been underway for well over a year and has become devastating in recent months. Malaki’s request is actually a call for greater US help: US intelligence units returned to Iraq a little over [...]
Israeli aircraft have carried out a strike near the Syrian coastal city of Latakia, a US official says.
BBC, November 1
The official said the strike targeted Russian-made missiles intended for the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.
Latakia is a stronghold of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, where his Alawite community is concentrated.
This is believed to [...]
Facebook banned the Peace and Democracy Party’s (BDP) use of the term KURDISTAN on the BDP’s Facebook page. According to BDP, Facebook did this to please the ruling AKP Party of Prime Minister Redep Erdogan. Turkey is a new market for social media and Facebook is happy to engage in Orwellian censorship to get
Washington Post, By Greg Miller, October 2
The CIA is expanding a clandestine effort to train opposition fighters in Syria amid concern that moderate, U.S.-backed militias are rapidly losing ground in the country’s civil war, U.S. officials said.
But the CIA program is so minuscule that it is expected to produce only a few hundred [...]
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s terse dismissal of Iranian President Rouhani’s recent overtures to the West was based solely on the two countries’ recent hostile past, not on an understanding of the two countries’ previous longstanding cooperation. Nor was it based on understanding the geopolitical realities upon which that longstanding cooperation was built and recognizing that [...]
** Syrian government says civil war has reached stalemate – Guardian Exclusive: Deputy PM says neither side is strong enough to win and government will call for ceasefire at Geneva talks
** Syria crisis: Putin ‘confident’ on chemical weapons plan – Russia’s President Vladimir Putin says he is “confident” Syria’s chemical weapons can be destroyed [...]
(Alertnet/Reuters) – Poor harvests and international sanctions have damaged Syria’s ability to fund food imports and could sharply increase the number of people requiring food aid, the head of the U.N.’s World Food Programme said on Monday.
Syria’s most recent wheat harvest was its worst in decades and traders say the country, mired in nearly [...]
Truthdig, By Amy Goodman, September 11
As President Barack Obama’s attack on Syria appears to have been delayed for the moment, it is remarkable that Secretary of State John Kerry was meeting, on Sept. 11, with one of his predecessors, Henry Kissinger, reportedly to discuss strategy on forthcoming negotiations on Syria with Russian officials. The [...]
A couple of ruminations came up in my head over the weekend when I contemplated the latest from Syria:
1) Do you think that the corporatists are screaming bloody murder that their chosen party, Republicans, are not falling in line like the sheeple they are?
2) Is part of the reason Teabaggers [...]
The Obama Administration’s effort to rally public and congressional support for retaliation against Syria for using chemical weapons has come up against unexpectedly strong and broad-based opposition. This must come as an unwelcome surprise to the Neocons, whose international aspirations regarding the Middle East and the Iranian nuclear progeam are now very much in question. [...]