Islamic State kills 270 in Syrian gas field ‘massacre’

Militant jihadist group kills dozens of Syrian troops and workers in its largest attack yet on the regime

Reuters, July 19

Jihadists have killed 270 Syrian regime fighters, civilian security guards and employees since seizing a gas field in Homs province, a monitoring group said Friday.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights described Thursday’s takeover [...]

UK military’s secret plan to train Syrian rebels to topple Bashar al-Assad

General Sir David Richards’ bid for 100,000-strong force had support from US heavyweights but was shelved as too risky

The Guardian, By Ewen MacAskill, July 4

The British military drew up a secret plan two years ago to train a 100,000-strong Syrian rebel force aimed at toppling president Bashar al-Assad.

The plan was the brainchild [...]

Obama Proposes $500 Million to Aid Syrian Rebels

Program to Train and Equip Moderate Opposition Would Expand U.S. Role in Civil War.

The Wall Street Journal, By Julian E. Barnes, Adam Entous & Carol E. Lee, June 26

Washington — The White House on Thursday proposed a major program to train and arm moderate Syrian rebels, in a significant expansion of the U.S. [...]

UN says 10.8 million Syrians need humanitarian aid

AP, By Edith M. Lederer, June 21

United Nations – The humanitarian situation in Syria is worsening and the number of people needing urgent help has reached 10.8 million – almost half of Syria’s population of 22 million, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Friday.

Ban’s monthly report to the U.N. Security Council said the current [...]

The Problem with Iraq: Too Much Mustard

We note that the latest news from Iraq is that radical Muslims, the ISIS, ISIL, or whomever, in natty Black uniforms, and Nissan pickup trucks mounted with 50 caliber machines guns, are the latest terrorists in Iraq and fighting Assad in Syria.

This rag-tag bunch of well-uniformed men have defeated the Iraqi army, (which was [...]

Iraqi PM asks for state of emergency after insurgents take Mosul

Fighters believed to be from ISIL have taken over most of Iraq’s second-largest city and freed 1,400 prisoners

Al Jazeera, June 11

Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has called on parliament to declare a state of emergency after armed fighters believed to be part of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) seized [...]

U.N. Chief Urges Aid Deliveries to Syria Without Its Consent

NYT – UNITED NATIONS — The Syrian government is “failing in its responsibility to look after its own people,” the secretary general of the United Nations said in a confidential report to the Security Council, in which he urged it to authorize the delivery of food and medicine to Syria without the government’s consent.

The [...]

Four French journalists freed after Syria kidnapping

RFI, April 19

Four French journalists are safe and in good health, after being held hostage in Syria since June 2013. The hostages were found overnight Friday by Turkish soldiers on the border between Turkey and Syria, where they had been tied-up and blindfolded.

French President François Hollande declared his huge relief on Saturday, in [...]

Syria On Track To Become World’s Largest Source Of Refugees

NPR, By Michelle Keleman, February 28

Masses of refugees wait in line to receive food aid distributed in the Yarmouk camp on Jan. 31 in Damascus, Syria. (United Nation Relief and Works Agency/Getty Images)

A photo from Syria is grabbing the world’s attention: a sea of people lining up for food amid the rubble of [...]

Ultimatum from Syrian Al-Qaeda group

Al Jazeera, February 25

The head of Al-Qaeda’s wing in Syria has given rival Islamist militants five days to accept mediation to end their infighting or face a war that “will terminate them,” according to an audio recording posted on Tuesday.

Abu Mohammed al-Golani, leader of Al-Nusra Front, called on the Islamic State in Iraq [...]

U.S. left with no point man in Syria after ‘moderate’ rebels fire their commander

McClatchy, By Roy Gutman & Hannah Allam, February 17

Reyhanli, Turkey — Caught off guard by the abrupt dismissal of the U.S. point man for moderate Syrian rebels, the Obama administration is now searching for new clients to aid in an insurgency that’s dominated by Islamist factions, including groups with connections to al Qaida.

The [...]

Aleppo, Yabrud, and the end of the war on Syria

Syrian Arab Army troops celebrate recent victory (liveleak.com)

The Syrian Arab Army may be on the verge of another set of victories that go far beyond those gained in the summer of 2013 when the Syrian army and Hezbollah took the rebel held city of Qusayr. The hotly contested battles rage in [...]

News Around the World

Cairo – Six people have been killed and some 100 others wounded in a series of explosions in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.

Ukraine – A Ukrainian Journalist Explains 10 Things The West Needs To Know About The Situation In Kiev

Poland – The hidden history of the CIA’s prison in Poland

The U.P. ;) [...]

Assad – Saudi ideology threat to the world

(Hurriyet Daily News, Istanbul) Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned during a meeting in Damascus on Wednesday with Iran’s foreign minister that Saudi Arabia’s political and religious ideology is “a threat to the world,” state television reported.

He was referring to Wahhabism, an ultra-conservative Sunni Muslim tradition which is predominant in Saudi Arabia, a key backer [...]

Finnegan begin again – Syria and the cycle of recursive violence

James Joyce began Finnegans Wake with this passage:

“riverrun, past Eve and Adam’s from swerve of shore to bend of bay bring us back by a commodious vicus of recirculation back to Howrth Castle and Environs.”

Those sturdy enough to navigate the hallucinogenic, recursive, rhythmic prose to the very last page [...]

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