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Rebels strike western Syria’s primary power grid to leave millions without electricity
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 1: WoT Operations
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Page 2: WoT Background
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Page 3: Non-WoT
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Page 4: Opinion
2 14:54 Sock Puppet of Doom [325]
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Page 6: Politix
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Suicide bomber arrested before attacking Lashkargh city with motorcycle bomb
[Khaama (Afghanistan)] A jacket wallah was incarcerated
Keep yer hands where we can see 'em, if yez please!
before he manage to carry out an attack using the a cycle of violence packed with explosives in Lashkagah city, the historic provincial capital of Helmand
...an Afghan province populated mostly by Pashtuns, adjacent to Injun country in Pak Balochistan...

The provincial government media office in a statement said the would-be suicide bomber was arrested from the vicinity of Nawa district in Zhar Sahib area.

The statement further added that a cycle of violence packed with explosives was also confiscated before the suicide bomber manages to take it to Lashkargah city for the attack.

The anti-government armed krazed killer groups including the Taliban
...Arabic for students...
hard boyz have not commented regarding the report so far.

This comes as a suicide bomber handed himself over to the security forces nearly ten days ago, shortly after he was deployed to Lashkargah city by the krazed killer groups for an attack.

The Helmand governor’s office in a statement said a suicide bomber who was sent by the Taliban group to carry out a suicide kaboom in Mukhtar area in Lashkargah city, has surrendered to the security forces.

The statement further added that the suicide bomber refrained to carry out the attack and today handed himself over to the police forces in the city.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [201 views] Top|| File under: Taliban

Africa Horn
Two Kenyan Al-Shabaab Fighters Executed For Spying For KDF
[RADIOSHABELLE] Two Kenyans have been executed by al-Shabaab
... Somalia's version of the Taliban, functioning as an arm of al-Qaeda...
fighters for allegedly spying for Somalia and Kenyan intelligence services in Kunyo Barrow town, Lower Shabelle region.

Hassan Yussuf and Mohammed Hassan from Marsabit county were executed by dagger-wielding forces of Evil on February 12.

Security sources said the militia forcefully gathered locals to witness the killings which they had announced earlier on Saturday using vehicle-mounted loudspeakers.

The locals in the area have witnessed regular executions carried out by the al Qaeda-linked terror group. The Lions of Islam kill those found guilty mainly by firing squad, throat slitting and stoning.

The foreign al-Shabaab fighters, mainly from Kenya, have witnessed rampant executions by the group who accuse them of being moles.

So far, more than 20 Kenyans have been executed. They include Jared Mokaya, Faraj Abdulmajid, Ahmed Yusuf, Ahmed Nur, Abdi Osoble, Abdullah Talal and Hashim Othman.

Last year, the forces of Evil publicly beheaded four men accused of spying.

The group confirmed the executions which took place after the men were found guilty by an al-Shabaab court in Jamame district of Lower Jubba region, some 70 km (43 miles) north of Kismayu.

Al-Shabaab fighters have carried out many attacks in Kenya in retaliation to the contribution of Kenya Defence Forces soldiers to the African Union
...a union consisting of 53 African states, most run by dictators of one flavor or another. The only all-African state not in the AU is Morocco. Established in 2002, the AU is the successor to the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), which was even less successful...
Mission in Somalia.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [218 views] Top|| File under: al-Shabaab (AQ)

#1  "Wrong ones. Try again"
Posted by: Frank G || 02/15/2018 8:52 Comments || Top||

One Dead, 3 Injured In IED Blast In Mogadishu, Says Spokesman
[RADIOSHABELLE] At least one person was confirmed dead and three others were maimed in an kaboom in Mogadishu on Tuesday evening, an official said.

Abdulaziz Ali Ibrahim, the front man of Somalia’s Ministry of Internal Security has confirmed that the blast has occurred at KM4 junction after an bomb went off.

The kaboom resulted from an improvised bomb [IED] that went kaboom! as it was playing by homeless children in the night.

He added at least three civilians has sustained in the incident and were admitted to the hospital for medical treatment.
Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [293 views] Top|| File under: al-Shabaab (AQ)

Army carries out military operations against aggression force over Tuesday
[SABANEWS.NET] The army and popular forces have waged military operations on Saudi army and its mercenaries' gatherings and sites, Killing and wounding dozens over Tuesday, according to army media reports combined by Saba News Agency on Wednesday.

In the border province of Jizan, artillery force of the army and committees shelled Saudi soldiers and mercenaries' gatherings in Faridha, Moanaq and Kars sites.
Also in Jizan, Saudi soldiers' military vehicle was bombed by an bomb in Bojan site, killing all its crew.

In Najran border province, gatherings of Saudi soldiers were targeted by artillery shells in front of Khadhra crossing, Shurfah and Shabakah sites.

In Saudi border province of Asir, dozens of Saudi-paid mercenaries and soldiers were killed and maimed during repelling their intensified advance into Alab area which continued from Tuesday night until Wednesday morning under the cover of air from Apache helicopters, warplanes and reconnaissance.

Also in Asir, missile bombardment targeted mercenaries' gatherings in customs, Hanjer censorship, Fill-Shaibani, Khazan and Qanasin hills.

In Taiz province, a surprise offensive operation was carried out on mercenaries' sites in Mafalis area of Haifan district, destroying weapon and killing and wounding dozens.

In western coast front, military vehicle of mercenaries was destroyed by an bomb, killing and wounding all its crew, while gatherings of aggression force and military vehicles were shelled by artillery, leding to the deaths and injuries in their ranks.

In Nehm district, an offensive operation was waged on sites of mercenaries in Qarn area, killing and wounding dozens.

In Marib province, an infiltration attempt was foiled into Fatem mountain of Harib-Qaramish district, leding to the deaths and injuries in their ranks.

In Hajjah province, the army and committees repelled mercenaries' infiltration toward Medi desert, although heavy air cover, inflicting heavy losses on enemy.

Dozens of the Sudanese mercenaries were killed and maimed after they failed to achieve any progress in Medi
Also in Medi, the warplanes launched more than 30 strikes and 100 rockets was waged by Apache.

In Yemen
...an area of the Arabian Peninsula sometimes mistaken for a country. It is populated by more antagonistic tribes and factions than you can keep track of. Except for a tiny handfull of Jews everthing there is very Islamic...
province of Jawf, the army and popular forces destroyed Saudi-paid mercenaries' military vehicle by an bomb in Utemah front, killing all its crew.
Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [203 views] Top|| File under: Houthis

4 personnel martyred in attack on FC vehicle in Quetta
[DAWN] Four Frontier Corps
...a provincial paramilitary force. Total manpower is about 80,000. They are tasked to help local law enforcement in the maintenance of law and order, and to carry out border patrol and a..the Antwerp-based Salafist organization that had campaigned to introduce Sharia law to Belgium before single-handedly making Belgium the highest per capita supplier of jihadis to Syria in Europe. There was a big trial in Antwerp in 2015, but most of those convicted were in absentia...nti-smuggling operations....
(FC) personnel bit the dust when unknown assailants shot up their vehicle in Quetta on Wednesday, DawnNews reported.

Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Quetta Razzaq Cheema said the security personnel were on routine patrol when attacked by miscreants in Dukkani Baba area of Sariab Road.

Police and personnel of other law enforcement agencies reached the spot as investigation into the incident went under way. Security was tightened in the area to apprehend the culprits involved in attack while the bodies have been shifted to Civil Hospital Quetta.

Police termed the incident as another act of assassination in the city.

The AFP reported that the Tehrik-e-Taliban
...Arabic for students...
Pakistain (TTP) grabbed credit of the attack. Funeral prayers of the dear departed were held at FC Headquarters in the city.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [205 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

Pakistan seizes charities linked to Hafiz Saeed
[Al Jazeera] Pakistain has banned two charities linked to Hafiz Saeed
...founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba and its false-mustache offshoot Jamaat-ud-Dawa. The United Nations declared the JuD a terrorist organization in 2008 and Hafiz Saeed a terrorist as its leader. Hafiz, JuD and LeT are wholly-owned subsidiaries of the Pak intel apparatus, so that amounted to squat...
, the alleged criminal mastermind behind the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed more than 160 people.

Saeed, founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba
...the Army of the Pure, an Ahl-e-Hadith terror organization founded by Hafiz Saeed. LeT masquerades behind the Jamaat-ud-Dawa facade within Pakistain and periodically blows things up and kills people in India. Despite the fact that it is banned, always an interesting concept in Pakistain, the organization remains an blatant tool and perhaps an arm of the ISI...
(LeT), has been designated a "terrorist" by the United Nations
...an organization originally established to war on dictatorships which was promptly infiltrated by dictatorships and is now held in thrall to dictatorships...
and had a $10m bounty placed on him by the US in 2012.

Rana Sanaullah, law minister for Punjab
1.) Little Orphan Annie's bodyguard
2.) A province of Pakistain ruled by one of the Sharif brothers
3.) A province of India. It is majority (60 percent) Sikh and Hindoo (37 percent), which means it has relatively few Moslem riots....

province, said on Wednesday that Pakistain's interior ministry had issued a notification against the Saeed-founded Jamaat-ud-Dawa
...the front organization of Lashkar-e-Taiba...
(JuD) charity, as well as its associated organization, the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF).

"We've received the interior ministry directions, and according to that, Hafiz Saeed and his charities, like JuD and FIF, have been banned to operate in Pakistain," Sanaullah told Rooters news agency.

"As per the instructions, we have already started taking over all the facilities, offices, schools, dispensaries and seminaries which belong to the JuD and FIF."

Rawalpindi commissioner Nadeem Aslam told Rooters that officials had "taken over all the JuD and FIF assets" and that the "takeover was complete".

The move by Pak authorities came days before a key meeting by the Financial Action Task Force, a global money-laundering watchdog, that will consider a US-sponsored motion to place Pakistain on a list of countries failing to prevent "terrorism" financing, Rooters reported.

Pakistain's Geo News reported that President Mamnoon Hussain on Friday amended the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 "to proscribe entities banned by the United Nations (Security Council) Act 1948".

In 2002, Pakistain banned the LeT as a "terrorist" organization, and, since 2008, authorities say they have been abiding by UN sanctions that subject JuD to an assets freeze, arms embargo and international travel ban.

Under house arrest since January 2017, Saeed was released in November after a court in Pakistain rejected a government application to extend his detention under anti-terrorism laws, saying there was no evidence to support the application.

He denies any involvement in the Mumbai attacks or connection to LeT, which has been blamed for a series of deadly attacks against Indian security forces and civilians, mostly in the disputed territory of Kashmire.

Saeed says he now heads JuD, which has been designated by the UN and US as a front for LeT.

In August, the LeT launched a political party, the Milli Moslem League (MML), and took part in a by-election in the eastern city of Lahore.

Election banners for MML's candidate, Muhammad Yaqoob Sheikh, prominently featured images of Saeed.

a poor excuse is better than no excuse at all...
two months later, the Election Commission of Pakistain rejected its registration due to its links with JuD and FIF.
Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [214 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Pakistan

PMFs injure, arrest army conscript, arrest police personnel in confrontations in Mosul
[Iraq News] Confrontations have occurred between the shia-led paramilitary troops and the Iraqi army in the western side of djinn-infested Mosul
... the home of a particularly ferocious and hairy djinn...
, an informed security source was quoted saying on Wednesday.

Speaking to Shafaq News, the source said that shootout took place after festivities with Sayyid al-Shuhadaa brigades, which works under the umbrella of al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces), at the entrance of the fourth bridge in west Mosul, which left a soldier maimed.

"Troops of the same brigade tossed in the calaboose
Drop the rod and step away witcher hands up!
four police conscripts at the entrance of al-Tayaran district, south of Mosul," the source, who preferred anonymity, added.
The forces, according to the source, "arrested the police personnel while being on duty at a checkpoint in the district."

PMFs, an alliance of more than 60 mostly Shia militias, have been actively engaged in the government’s campaign that ran since October 2016 against the Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
, which declared a self-styled "caliphate" from Mosul in June 2014. The troops contributed to the campaign by regaining control over IS holdouts near the Syrian borders. It is considered one of the largest militias in Iraq. It was established in 2014 by a fatwa (religious edict) to fight the Islamic State.
Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [238 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Iran Proxies

#1  Sunni/Shia friendship events
Posted by: Frank G || 02/15/2018 13:20 Comments || Top||

Baghdad Bombs & Bullets Bulletin

Two civilians wounded in bomb blast near Baghdad markets

Baghdad (Iraqinews.com) – Two civilians were injured Wednesday in a bomb blast near popular markets in western Baghdad, a security source was quoted as saying.

Speaking to Alghad Press, the source said, “An explosive charge went off near busy street markets at al-Maamel area in western Baghdad.”

“The explosion left two civilians wounded,” the source said, pointing out that the security forces cordoned off the blast site and allowed ambulance to carry the injured to a nearby hospital for treatment.

Baghdad command denies reports about car bomb blast near party’s HQ

Baghdad (Iraqinews.com) – The Baghdad Operations Command denied on Wednesday media reports published on social networking websites about detonating a booby-trapped vehicle near the headquarters of the Iraqi National Congress (INC) party in western Baghdad.

In a statement, a copy of which was obtained by Baghdad Today news website, the command described as “groundless” the news published on the INC’s Facebook page about a car bomb blast near its headquarters at al-Mansour district, west of Baghdad, on Tuesday night.

The command explained that security forces were suspicious about a car parked near the party’s premises, but after inspecting it they found out that it was not booby-trapped.

The command, therefore, called on all media outlets and news websites to seek accuracy before publishing any news of such a kind and to take information only from reliable sources.

Police conscript killed in armed attack near house, west of Baghdad

Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) A police conscript has been killed as gunmen opened fire against him in west of Baghdad, a security source said on Tuesday.

Speaking to Baghdad Today website, the source said, “unidentified gunmen opened fire against a police conscript in al-Bakriya region, west of Baghdad.”

“The victim succumbed to death near his house,” the source added.

Two civilians wounded in bomb blast near Baghdad markets

Baghdad (Iraqinews.com) – Two civilians were wounded Tuesday in a bomb attack near street markets in northern Baghdad, a security source was quoted as saying.

In a press statement to Alghad Press, the source said, “A bomb placed near busy street markets went off in al-Rashdiya neighborhood, north of Baghdad, leaving two civilians wounded.”

“Ambulances rushed to the blast site and carried the injured to a nearby hospital for treatment,” the source added.

Six people killed, injured as bomb attack targets popular market in Baghdad

Baghdad (Iraqinews.com) – Six people were killed and injured Tuesday in a bomb explosion in western Baghdad, a security source was quoted as saying.

Speaking to Baghdad Today news website, the source said, “An explosive charge went off near busy street markets in al-Radwaniyah area, west of Baghdad.”

“The explosion left a citizen dead and five others injured,” the source said, adding that ambulances rushed to the blast site and carried the injured to a nearby hospital for treatment, while the dead was moved to the forensic medicine department.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [197 views] Top|| File under:

Palestinian trio tries to smuggle pipe bombs into West Bank military court
[IsraelTimes] Security forces on Wednesday foiled an attempt to smuggle a number of pipe bombs into the Samaria Military Court ‐ the second such incident in as many days at the West Bank facility.

A Border Police guard in charge of security checks at the entrance to the courthouse noticed three Paleostinians acting suspiciously outside, the Israel Police said in a statement.

The guard approached them and, after noticing that one of the suspects was holding what appeared to be a pipe bomb, aimed his weapon at the group while calling for backup. The officer also demanded that they remove their clothes, a standard procedure when security forces fear a suspect may be carrying a concealed bomb or weapon.

Another of the suspects was holding a plastic bag that security guards suspected contained at least one pipe bomb, the statement continued. The suspect threw the bag to the side, and a subsequent search revealed that he was carrying at least another two pipe bombs.

The incident was still ongoing in the early afternoon, police said, with the three suspects still at the scene while security forces waited for sappers to neutralize the suspected improvised bombs.

On Tuesday a Paleostinian man was stopped as he tried to smuggle a pipe bomb packed with metal shards from knives into the same courthouse.

The Samaria Military Court has been targeted several times in the past few months by Paleostinians carrying pipe bombs.

Security forces arrest 18 suspected of terrorism in West Bank

[Ynet] IDF forces, in conjunction with Border Police, police and Shin Bet forces, jugged
Yez got nuttin' on me, coppers! Nuttin'!
18 people in the West Bank on suspicion of involvement in terrorism and violent riots.

In addition, raids in the area turned up weapons, thousands of shekels in terror funds and a vehicle worth dozens of thousands of shekels.
Posted by: trailing wife || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [295 views] Top|| File under:

#1  walk em out to an open field and detonate them (Paleos and booms)
Posted by: Frank G || 02/15/2018 6:32 Comments || Top||

#2  They sure are trying.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 02/15/2018 7:29 Comments || Top||

Rantburg Exclusive: 2/14/2018 SDF Battle Field Report And Afrin General Information
Some Twitter accounts for Kurds reporting the conflict are being restricted by Twitter late today.

A night video claims to show more US Military Equipment and Military Personnel moving into the Rojava area under the cover of darkness.

Heartbreaking pictures of elderly Kurdish killed and of very severe injuries to small Kurdish children are appearing frequently as Turk Air and Artillery assets pound civilian areas. One picture shows an elderly man kissing his dead elderly wife over her heart as she is about to be taken away from their bombarded home.

In Turkey PKK guerillas executed a successful attack on the Turkish military.

1- Afrin city center: the Turkish invasion army and its Jihadist factions have shelled the city center of Afrin and the road junction of Ain Hajar last night until 11 AM this morning.
Yesterday at 7 PM, Ashrafiyeh and Terannda neighborhoods were a target for the Turkish brutal artillery shelling.

2-Sharra: Fierce clashes broke out between our forces and the Turkish jihadists in the vicinity of Sarinjik and Darqliya villages accompanied by indiscriminate artillery shelling by the Turkish army and its Jihadist factions. After repelling the attackers, the Turkish jets conducted raids on Darqliya village. Since the early hours of this morning, the Turkish artillery shelled Deir Sawan village causing damages to civilian homes. The shelling lasted until 11 AM.

3-Shiyeh: all of the villages in Shiyeh township were a target for the Turkish heavy weapons, which started last night until 11 AM this morning.
Also the Turkish invasion army and its Jihadist factions brutally bombed the middle-Chaqala village since the early morning until the preparation of this report.

4- Raju: Fierce clashes broke out between our forces and the Turkish invasion army and its Jihadist factions in the vicinity of Qudah village since yesterday at 6 PM, where our forces repelled their attacks and seized some pieces of weapon, while the enemy fled away from the battlefield.
The Turkish heavy weapons targeted the hill of Qudah village since the early morning, accompanied with heavy raids on the hill.

5- Belbeleh: our forces engaged with the Turkish invasion army last night at 7 PM, causing heavy losses within the ranks of the enemy, where our forces destroyed a Turkish tank.
Since the mornings hours, the Turkish recconnaisance aircraft did not miss the atmosphere in Belbeleh township, as the Turkish jets continues to target all of the hills and villages in Belbeleh.

SDF-Media Centre

Posted by: Ulaigum Ebbineng7056 || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [482 views] Top|| File under: Sublime Porte

#1  Troll on aisle I.
Posted by: g(r)omgoru || 02/15/2018 6:32 Comments || Top||

#2  Troll? Calling yourself out g(r)omgoru?
Posted by: Injun Bucket8891 || 02/15/2018 23:47 Comments || Top||

Russian jets bomb airport visited by Turkish troops in Idlib
[ALMASDARNEWS] For the second night in a row, the Russian Aerospace Forces have been launching powerful Arclight airstrikes over the Hama and Idlib governorates.

According to a military report from Hama, the Russian Aerospace Forces began the night by conducting several airstrikes over the northern countryside of the Idlib Governorate.

These airstrikes were concentrated on the Taftanaz Military Airport area, with at least two bombs actually hitting the installation itself.

What’s interesting about the Russian bombing of the Taftanaz Airport tonight is that the Ottoman Turkish Army visited this military installation on Tuesday.

...back at the abandoned silver mine, there was another kaboom...
in southern Idlib, the Russian Aerospace Forces launched several airstrikes over the town of Khan Sheikhoun in a bid to obstruct the jihadist supply route to northern Hama.

The Russian Aerospace Forces would then bombard northern Hama, striking the Jaish al-’Izza controlled towns of al-Lataminah and Kafr Zita.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [285 views] Top|| File under: Sublime Porte

Rebels strike western Syria’s primary power grid to leave millions without electricity
[ALMASDARNEWS] The rebel force in northern Hama fired several missiles at one of Syria’s most important power plants tonight, resulting in a number of powerful kabooms that could be heard throughout the government and rebel held towns in the area.

According to a local NDF source, the Salafist tough guys scored several direct hits on the Mhardeh Power Plant from their positions in al-Lataminah and Kafr Zita.

As a result of this attack, the Mhardeh Power Plant was badly damaged, leaving millions of Syrians without power along the coast.

In particular, the Mhardeh Power Plant feeds electricity to millions of Syrians living in the densely populated provinces of Hama, Tartous and Latakia.

Repair units have been unable to reach the Mhardeh Power Plant because of the ongoing missile strikes around the predominately Christian town of Mhardeh.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [460 views] Top|| File under: Govt of Syria

#1  Almost sounds like Puerto Rico...
Posted by: Raj || 02/15/2018 0:06 Comments || Top||

#2  Mhardeh is not a small facility. ~700-MW Gas-Fired Steam Turbine Russkie design. Five 150MW turbines (de-rated) and it looks like the 'Rebels' took one completely out.

If one turbine fails (in this case catastrophically), the other ones would shut down by design.

Looks like they now have the other four up and running, though.
Posted by: Mullah Richard || 02/15/2018 11:21 Comments || Top||

ISIS showcases new offensive in southern Damasus
[ALMASDARNEWS] The so-called Islamic State
...formerly ISIS or ISIL, depending on your preference. Before that al-Qaeda in Iraq, as shaped by Abu Musab Zarqawi. They're very devout, committing every atrocity they can find in the Koran and inventing a few more. They fling Allah around with every other sentence, but to hear the pols talk they're not really Moslems....
(ISIS) kicked off a new offensive in the southern suburbs of Damascus on Tuesday, targeting Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham
’s positions in the strategic Yarmouk Camp District.

ISIS began the offensive by storming Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham’s positions along Haifa Street; this would result in a short, but violent battle.

The Islamic State assault would ultimately prove too much for the Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham fighters, as the latter retreated from all the buildings they controlled along Haifa Street.

As a result of this advance, the Islamic State now controls most of the Yarmouk Camp, leaving only the northern axis of the district still rebel-held.

Posted by: Fred || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [365 views] Top|| File under: Islamic State

#1  War is expensive. Where are the supplies and ammo coming from?
Posted by: B. White5295 || 02/15/2018 16:56 Comments || Top||

#2  Whoever has the money to gain control of the oil wells via proxy Islamic forces.
Posted by: Omeger Gray6606 || 02/15/2018 18:16 Comments || Top||

Mercs Hurt in U.S. Syria Strikes Are Treated at Russian Defense Hospitals (video)
[Bloomberg] Even as the Kremlin denies any official link to them, scores of Russian mercenaries wounded in U.S. strikes in Syria are being treated at Defense Ministry hospitals.

The wounded were brought to military hospitals in Moscow and St. Petersburg, according to two people in contact with them, after more than 200 fighters died in last week’s failed assault on a base held by U.S.-backed forces in Syria’s eastern Deir Ezzor region. The death toll’s rising as some of the wounded succumb to their injuries, according to one of the people.

Russia’s denied any official involvement. There’s no "specific detailed information" on what happened and while there may be Russian citizens in Syria, "they don’t belong to the Russian armed forces," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call Wednesday.

The incident shines a light on a little-known weapon in the Kremlin’s hybrid-war arsenal. Mercenaries, who’ve been active in the conflicts in eastern Ukraine and Syria, allow Russia to deny official involvement in operations when things go wrong. Fighters involved in the Feb. 7 assault in Syria were linked to Wagner, two people familiar with the matter said, a shadowy private military contractor which has a training camp at a commando base in southern Russia.

The U.S. Treasury named Dmitry Utkin as Wagner’s leader last June as it sanctioned him for sending fighters to eastern Ukraine. Utkin was photographed next to President Vladimir Putin at a Kremlin reception in late 2016, held to honor him and others for their service to Russia, for which they have received state awards, according to Peskov.
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/15/2018 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [382 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Nov 2nd 2017 | MOSCOW

“I AM Roman Sergeyevich Zabolotny, born in 1979, and I have been taken prisoner,” says a Russian-speaking man in a video released last month by the jihadists of Islamic State (IS). A second soldier, his right eye swollen shut, sits silently in grey robes. Both were reportedly captured during a battle near Deir ez-Zor, a city in Syria’s east and the site of a recent offensive by Russian and Syrian government forces. Yet the Russian defence ministry denied that any of its soldiers had gone missing. Friends and relatives told Russian media that the men had gone to Syria not with the Russian army, but as part of a shadowy mercenary force known as “Wagner”.

The group has come to play a key role in Russian operations in Syria. Though Russian law officially bans private military companies (PMCs), a St Petersburg-based independent news site, Fontanka.ru, reported in late 2015 that ex-soldiers were being recruited to serve in Wagner by a former special-forces officer, Dmitry Utkin. Numbering as many as 2,500 men, the group is believed to have figured heavily in operations around Palmyra in 2016, serving as “shock troops” alongside the Syrian army, says Mark Galeotti, an expert on Russian security at the Institute of International Relations in Prague. Though the Russian army has not acknowledged Wagner’s existence, Mr Utkin was photographed late last year alongside President Vladimir Putin at a Kremlin reception for military officers in honour of Day of Heroes of the Fatherland. This summer America added him to its list of officials sanctioned for involvement in the Ukraine conflict of 2014, where the group is said to have got its start.


For now, the Wagnerians still operate in a grey zone. Fontanka.ru recently reported that their role has expanded to include seizing oil wells held by IS for a newly-formed Russian company, Evro Polis. As for the two captives, their fates are probably sealed, says an MP from the home region of one of them. “There’s a 99% chance that Roman and the second prisoner are no longer among the living.”

Posted by: Ulaigum Ebbineng7056 || 02/15/2018 0:18 Comments || Top||

#2  "Man's gotta make a living"
"Dying ain't much of a living"
Posted by: Frank G || 02/15/2018 8:50 Comments || Top||

#3  "Not getting killed, that really is the key to the benefit programme."
Posted by: Besoeker || 02/15/2018 8:51 Comments || Top||

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