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November 29, 2015 / 17 Kislev, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Syrian civil war’

Netanyahu and Obama Meet: Kindred Nations, Cold Friends

Monday, November 9th, 2015

On Monday morning, Nov. 9, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with U.S. President Barack Obama at the White House. It was the first meet-up between the two leaders in a year filled with monumental events and mounting catastrophes in the Middle East and around the world.

The two were joined by several top level aides. Obama had Vice President Joe Biden and his national security adviser, Susan Rice, while Netanyahu had his Ambassador to the U.S. and longtime confidante Ron Dermer. The U.S. Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, was also in the room.

The meeting was well-scripted: the topics included the main source of contention between these two cold friends, the Nuclear Iran Deal, which Obama sees as a cornerstone of his presidency and Netanyahu sees as an existential threat to his nation.

Other topics included Israel’s request for a long-term and greatly increased military aid package. The U.S. has repeatedly dangled such a package in front of Israel as a consolation prize for freezing out the Jewish state from its negotiations with the Islamic Republic of Iran, and then concluding a deal which was fervently opposed by Israelis across the political spectrum.

The two leaders also discussed the spreading assault on security across the Middle East, with the Syrian Civil War now in its fourth bloody year. That war has led to massive human displacement and structural collapse, the deaths of hundreds of thousands, and the exodus of as many as can flee the region, bringing unskilled workers, rampant disease and a brutalized and frequently brutal wave of humanity onto the shores of Europe.

In addition, the growth of the barbarous ISIS and its slow but inexorable spread across the region, and in particular its encroachment into countries which border Israel had to inform the discussion of terrorism in the region, as well.

Before the meeting, Obama said: “It’s no secret that the security environment in the Middle East has deteriorated in many areas, and as I’ve said repeatedly, the security of Israel is one of my top foreign policy priorities. And that’s expressed itself not only in words, but in deeds.”

The recent upswing in terrorist attacks against Israelis by Palestinian Arab citizen-terrorists was a focus of the talk, with the Israeli Prime Minister assuring the U.S. President that he was committed to peace between his people and his Palestinian Arab citizens and neighbors.

The U.S. President said he and his administration “condemn in the strongest terms Palestinian violence against innocent Israeli citizens.” Obama added,”It is my strong belief that Israel has not just the right, but the obligation to protect itself.”

For his part, Netanyahu thanked the President for his continued strong support for Israel’s security.

The Israeli President also assured Obama that despite the carnage, he still wishes to see “two states for two peoples, a demilitarized Palestinian state that recognizes a Jewish state.”

And there’s the rub. There is no way the Palestinian Arab leadership will or can ever accept a state that is demilitarized. And there is no way the Jewish State can accept yet another Arab neighboring state that refuses to recognize its legitimacy as a Jewish State, and/or one that is armed and will, in addition to its own genocidal wishes for Israel, will certainly be used as a proxy by Israel’s powerful enemies such as Iran.

Breaking News: Russia Gives Green Light for Air Strikes in Syria

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015


The Russian Federation Council has approved a resolution that allows military force outside of the country, clearing the path for Russian air strikes in Syria.

The vote followed a request from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for military help to help him survive.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has claimed that Russian involvement in Syria is intended to fight the Islamic State (ISIS), and the Kremlin chief of staff insists that air strikes will be limited to hitting ISIS.

However, it can easily be claimed that ISIS is operating in areas controlled by other rebel groups fighting Assad and that military strikes will be widespread.

The presence of Russian warplanes in Syria gives Moscow a base to take over Syrian skies, where Israel occasionally has attacked Russian and Iranian weapons en route to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Hezbollah and Iran also have sent thousands of soldiers to Iran, allowing for a Russian-Iranian-Hezbollah alliance across from Israel’s border with Syria.

Fox News reported Wednesday that Russia has demanded that the United States remove all of its warplanes from Syrian airspace. A senior defense official told Fox:

We have had every indication in recent weeks that (the Russians) were going to do something given the build-up.

There is nothing to indicate that we are changing operations over Syria.

Rocket Alert on Golan – Nothing Hit Israel

Wednesday, June 17th, 2015

11:50 Rocket Alert on Golan – Nothing hit Israel.

Syrian Rebels have launched a large offensive against Assad’s forces in the city of Madinat Al-Baath in Quneitra, near the Israeli border.

At 11:50 AM a rocket siren went off on the Golan Heights in Ortal, Alonei Bashan, Marom Golan, Ein Zivan and Keshet.

Residents went into the bomb shelters.

It appears that a rocket or mortar may have been launched by one side against the other, but no rockets landed on the Israeli side of the border.

Hezbollah Runs Away as Jabhat al-Nusra Captures Another Syrian City

Friday, May 29th, 2015

A Syrian rebel group, Jaish al-Fatah, which is a coalition of Islamic rebels led by the Al-Qaeda affiliate, Jabhat al-Nusra, captured Ariha, the last remaining Syrian-government controlled city in the north-western province of Idleb.

Syrian forces and Hezbollah retreated after fierce battles, according a report in the Lebanon Daily Star.

The Nusra front now controls all the cities in the province, which shares a border with Turkey.

Dozens Killed in Strategic Syrian Qalamoun Battles

Thursday, May 7th, 2015

Arab sources report that dozens of combatants from both Hezbollah and Free Syrian Army/Jabhat al-Nusra (the Syrian Rebels) have been killed in ongoing fierce fighting in the Qalamoun region. The battle has been dubbed “The Spring Battle” by Arab media.

The area, along the Syrian-Lebanon border is strategically critical. It controls the Lebanon-Damascus supply pipelines and is how Hezbollah supports Bashar Assad’s army and regime in Damascus.

If Assad/Hezbollah loses control of the area, Damascus is more likely to fall to the Syrian Rebels. It will also cut off Assad’s Alawite region in northwest Syria from from Damascus too.

Hezbollah believes that if Assad falls, so will they.

Assad is unable to send significant, if any, forces to assist in this battle, and his army is stretched thin in other areas, in particular around Damascus, which is a primary target for the Syrian Rebels.

At the moment, it is believed that the Syrian Rebel forces are winning in the Qalamoun region.

A source close to Hezbollah told Reuters that Nasrallah has deployed 85% of his combat forces to fight in Syria, leaving only 5% of his forces on the border with Israel.

A Lebanese paper claims that 1500 Hezbollah terrorists have been killed since they joined in the fighting in Syrian’s civil war.

The number of senior Hezbollah commanders killed in Qalmoun fighting has risen to six.

US Soldiers Arrive in Turkey to Train ‘Moderate’ Rebels against ISIS

Friday, May 1st, 2015

Approximately 120 U.S. Army soldiers have landed in Turkey to train “moderate” Syrian rebels at a Turkish air force base, Hurriyet News reported Friday.

The Obama administration previously has announced a grandiose program to train and equip rebels fighting the Assad regime, which has been joined by the Iranian-back Hezbollah terrorist  organization.

Implementation of the program has been delayed because of disagreement over which fighters will be trained. The United States wants to vet fighters so that the weapons don’t end up in the hands of Al Qaeda, ISIS and other terrorist groups, but that could mean that the best fighters won’t be trained.

American governments and their State Dept, gurus have a long and bloody history of ignorance of the Middle East, as well as Vietnam for those who recall the groups of “advisors” that ballooned into a full force of soldiers, 58,000 of whom were killed in the war in the 1960s and 70s.

A senior opposition commander in eastern Syria told Reuters, “When the Americans see anyone shout ‘Allahu Akbar! they think they’re Islamists.”

The Syrian rebels being trained by the American soldiers will return to Syria to fight the Islamic State (ISIS) and will take along machine guns and anti-tank weapons.

President Obama has been extremely reluctant to get involved in the civil war in Syria, and one wonders whether he simply is going through the motion to show that he is doing something, without actually doing much at all.

One rebel commander told Reuters that Syrians are most motivated to defeat Assad, whose regime he described to Reuters as the “biggest killer.”

Syria is geographically divided, with the ISIS controlling areas in eastern Syria.

The State Dept., in response to questioning from Sen. John McCain in March, wrote him, “Even when considered as a whole, U.S. government assistance to the moderate armed opposition will not be decisive in defeating regime forces.

“Nor will the fighters who receive this assistance, on their own, force Assad to change his calculus about trying to hold on to power.”

Latest EU Brilliance: Have Iran Star in Syrian Civil War Negotiations

Wednesday, April 29th, 2015

Federica Mogherini, foreign policy chief of the European Union, expressed hope that Iran would play an important but constructive role in a renewed United Nations effort to restart negotiations towards ending the years-long Syrian civil war.

Mogherini met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in New York on Tuesday, April 28. Prior to her meeting, Mogherini said that she sees her role as ensuring that “negotiations proceed in a speedy and good way.”

What she meant by “good,” she explained to reporters in New York, is that the negotiations should result in Iran being prevented from developing nuclear weapons, but that it be allowed the “right to deploy a peaceful program as everybody else.”

Mogherini told Zarif it is crucial that the P5+1 powers successfully conclude nuclear negotiations with Iran. She said that doing so could boost Iran’s regional role in a positive manner, Reuters reported.

The EU foreign policy chief said she understands the concerns of many countries regarding Iran, but said it would be “naive to imagine that a country like Iran could simply disappear from the map.”

Mogherini said it was important “for Iran to play a major, major but positive, role on Syria in particular, to encourage the regime to … (support) a Syrian-led transition,” she said, referring to a 2012 U.N. plan for a political transition in Syria.

The deadline for a final nuclear deal with Iran is June 30. Iran and the six major global powers – the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany – reached a tentative framework agreement on April 2.

The U.N. envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, said he will begin meeting in May with the various players both within and outside Syria, in order to assess whether there is any hope of brokering an end to the war.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon asked de Mistura earlier this month to “focus much more to re-launch a political process” after his attempt to broker a local truce in Aleppo failed.

Many Arab countries in the region, Israel and the United States have resisted the inclusion of Iran in Syrian peace talks. That is because they, understandably, consider Tehran to be the problem, not the solution.

Iran has been supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a staunch ally. It was the widespread belief of many inside the country, and certainly of the current U.S. administration, that Assad had to step down. His refusal to do so, and the regime’s resort to extreme violence including the use of gas to murder citizens of his own nation, ignited the conflagration that has consumed entire cities and killed hundreds of thousands of Syrians over the past four years.

Mogherini is set to meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Washington on Wednesday.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/latest-eu-brilliance-have-iran-star-in-syrian-civil-war-negotiations/2015/04/29/

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