Israel has launched at least three airstrikes against positions of the Syrian army on the Golan Heights.
The UK-based so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Sunday that the strikes hit a town in Syria’s southwestern province of Quneitra on the Syrian side of the plateau, near the border with the Israeli-occupied part of the strategic region.
The Israeli military confirmed that the strikes hit two Syrian military posts, near the provincial capital of Baath City, but it said that it used artillery fire.
There is still no immediate report of possible casualties and the extent of damage inflicted by the strikes
Syrian Arab Army forces push Jaish al-Islam and al-Nusra Front militants from the routes linking Damascus and the city of Homs.
Three female jihadists believed to be from the UK are urging Western Muslims to join them in helping to open a new front for Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) in North Africa. The women are believed to have been living in Libya since the summer.
The three women, who are native English speakers, have been monitored by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD) think tank for months, the Guardian reports.
They have been actively using social media to try to persuade IS sympathizers to come to the war-torn North African nation. They say that because increased security along the Turkish border has made it harder to join the militant terrorist group in Syria, moving to Libya is now the best option.
US On The Ropes: China To Join Russian Military In Syria While Iraq Strikes Intel Deal With Moscow, Tehran
27 September, 2015
Last Thursday, we asked if China was set to join Russia and Iran in support of the Assad regime in Syria.
Our interest was piqued when the pro-Assad Al-Masdar (citing an unnamed SAA “senior officer”), said Chinese “personnel and aerial assets” are set to arrive within weeks. To the uninitiated, this may seem to have come out of left field, so to speak. However, anyone who has followed the conflict and who knows a bit about the global balance of power is aware that Beijing has for some time expressed its support for Damascus, most notably by voting with Russia to veto a Security Council resolution that would have seen the conflict in Syria referred to the Hague. Here’s what China had to say at the May 22, 2014 meeting:
For some time now, the Security Council has maintained unity and coordination on the question of Syria, thanks to efforts by Council members, including China, to accommodate the major concerns of all parties. At a time when seriously diverging views exist among the parties concerning the draft resolution, we believe that the Council should continue holding consultations, rather than forcing a vote on the draft resolution, in order to avoid undermining Council unity or obstructing coordination and cooperation on questions such as Syria and other major serious issues. Regrettably, China’s approach has not been taken on board; China therefore voted against the draft resolution.
In other words, China could see the writing on the wall and it, like Russia, was not pleased with where things seemed to be headed. A little more than a year later and Moscow has effectively called time on the strategy of using Sunni extremist groups to destabilize Assad and given what we know about Beijing’s efforts to project China’s growing military might, it wouldn’t exactly be surprising to see the PLA turn up at Latakia as well.
Sure enough, Russian media now says that according to Russian Senator Igor Morozov, Beijing has decided to join the fight. Here’s Pravda (translated):
According to the Russian Senator Igor Morozov, Beijing has taken decision to take part in combating IS and sent its vessels to the Syrian coast.
Igor Morozov, member of the Russian Federation Committee on International Affairs claimed about the beginning of the military operation by China against the IS terrorists. "It is known, that China has joined our military operation in Syria, the Chinese cruiser has already entered the Mediterranean, aircraft carrier follows it," Morozov said.
According to him, Iran may soon join the operation carried out by Russia against the IS terrorists, via Hezbollah. Thus, the Russian coalition in the region gains ground, and most reasonable step of the US would be to join it. Although the stance of Moscow and Washington on the ways of settlement of the Syrian conflict differs, nonetheless, low efficiency of the US coalition acts against terrorists is obvious. Islamists have just strengthened their positions.
As Leonid Krutakov told Pravda.Ru in an interview, the most serious conflict is currently taking place namely between China and the US. Moscow may support any party, the expert believes, and that is what will change the world order for many years.
Clearly, one has to consider the source here, but as noted above, if Beijing is indeed set to enter the fray, it would be entirely consistent with China's position on Syria and also with the PLA's desire to take a more assertive role in international affairs.
Meanwhile, it now looks as though the very same Russian-Iran "nexus" that's playing spoiler in Syria is also set to take over the fight against ISIS in Iraq, as Baghdad has now struck a deal to officially share intelligence with Moscow and Tehran. Here's CNN:
Iraq says it has reached a deal to share intelligence with Russia, Iran and Syria in the fight against ISIS militants.
The announcement on Saturday from the Iraqi military cited "the increasing concern from Russia about thousands of Russian terrorists committing criminal acts within ISIS."
The news comes amid U.S. concerns about Russia's recent military buildup in Syria and would appear to confirm American suspicions of some kind of cooperation between Baghdad and Moscow.
We'd be remiss if we failed to note the significance here. The entire narrative is falling apart for the US, as Russia and Iran are now moving to transform the half-hearted Western effort to contain ISIS into a very serious effort to eradicate the group. Recall that just a little over a week ago, Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani essentially accused the US of intentionally keeping Islamic State around so that the group can continue to advance Washington's geopolitical agenda by serving as a destabilizing element in Syria. According to the Pentagon, Soleimani's visit to Russia (which, you're reminded, violated a UN travel ban and infuriated opponents of the Iran nuclear deal) was "very important" in terms of accelerating the timetable on Russia's inevitable involvement in Syria. It is of course Soleimani who commands the Shiite militias battling ISIS in Iraq. Now, it appears that in addition to the cooperation in Syria, he has managed to secure a Russian-Iran partnership for Tehran's Iraqi operations as well. Here's GOP mouthpiece Fox News:
Russian, Syrian and Iranian military commanders have set up a coordination cell in Baghdad in recent days to try to begin working with Iranian-backed Shia militias fighting the Islamic State, Fox News has learned.
Western intelligence sources say the coordination cell includes low-level Russian generals. U.S. officials say it is not clear whether the Iraqi government is involved at the moment.
Describing the arrival of Russian military personnel in Baghdad, one senior U.S. official said, "They are popping up everywhere."
While the U.S. also is fighting the Islamic State, the Obama administration has voiced concern that Russia's involvement, at least in Syria, could have a destabilizing effect.
Moscow, though, has fostered ties with the governments in both Syria and Iraq. In May, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi flew to Moscow for an official visit to discuss potential Russian arms transfers and shared intelligence capability, as well as the enhancement of security and military capabilities, according to a statement by the Iraqi prime minister's office at the time.
Iranian Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani also was spotted in Baghdad on Sept 22. He met with Shia militias backed by Iran; intelligence officials believe he met with Russians as well.
And here is ISW:
What appears to have happened here is this: Vladimir Putin has exploited both the fight against ISIS and Iran's need to preserve the regional balance of power on the way to enhancing Russia's influence over Mid-East affairs which in turn helps to ensure that Gazprom's interests are protected going forward.
Thanks to the awkward position the US has gotten itself in by covertly allying itself with various Sunni extremist groups, Washington is for all intents and purposes powerless to stop Putin lest the public should sudddenly get wise to the fact that combatting Russia's resurrgence and preventing Iran from expanding its interests are more imporant than fighting terror.
In short, Washington gambled on a dangerous game of geopolitical chess, lost, and now faces two rather terrifyingly disastrous outcomes: 1) China establishing a presence in the Mid-East in concert with Russia and Iran, and 2) seeing Iraq effectively ceded to the Quds Force and ultimately, to the Russian army
Report: 30,000 Foreign ISIS Recruits in Syria
The battle through the eyes of Eugene Poddubny. The Syrian army is trying to recapture the suburbs of Damascus
Бой глазами Евгения Поддубного. Сирийская армия пытается отбить пригороды Дамаска
27 September, 2015
What is happening in Syria, most of the territory already captured by terrorists?Government army continues to struggle. It is the only power on earth that does this.
First Syria, now Iraq - Russia is preparing for major war against ISIS
27 May, 2015
Russia has partnered with both Syria, Iraq and Iran to combat IS, and has now opened a military center in Baghdad.
The center is a joint center for Russia, Syria, Iraq and Iran, to exchange information in the fight against the Islamic terrorist group ISIS.
According to the Russian news agency Interfax, the center is located in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, and it will be a gathering place for military representatives from the four countries.
The plant will reportedly also be used to coordinate military operations against IS, the jihadist group that has taken control of large areas of Iraq and Syria over the past year.
The Russians have recently equipped the Syrian government with fighter aircraft and other military equipment, which has caused worries in the West.
The Iraqi military confirmed Saturday night the collaboration in a statement.
- The cooperation happens after increased Russian concern about the thousands of terrorists from Russia, who is performing criminal acts with Daesh, the report says, where IS referred to by another name.
Russia supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's government and is pushing for that Damascus should be part of the global effort against IS, which the United States refuses to accept.
On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks to the UN General Assembly, where it is expected that he will advocate for a collective effort against the extremist group.
Putin will also have talks with US President Barack Obama in connection with his visit to New York. Earlier in the week, sources stated to Bloomberg that the Russians are planning to go to war against IS in Syria - with or without the US on board.
Ilja Rogatsjov, spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, followed up by saying that Russia "theoretically" could join the US-led military coalition that is fighting against the jihadists.
- But it must be done within the right conditions, said Rogatsjov.
Obama has been criticized for being too little decisive about the conflicts in the Middle East. It is expected that Secretary of State, John Kerry, soon will present a new plan for a political solution in Syria.
And when Obama and Kerry plan for another failed political solution with radical nutters, Putin plans to simply blow them way.
Iran sent 4000 Special Forces to Syria
27 September, 2015
Washington’s decision to arm Syria’s Sunni Muslim rebels has plunged America into the great Sunni-Shia conflict of the Islamic Middle East, entering a struggle that now dwarfs the Arab revolutions which overthrew dictatorships across the region.
Not from Syria.Putin is getting support from throughout Europe
China Joining Russia In Syria While Germany Prepares to Leave NATO In Advance of World War III
27 September, 2015
By Dave Hodges
MEDIA: RUSSIAN MARINES AND IRANIAN REVOLUTIONARY GUARDSMEN BUILD A PROTECTORATE IN WESTERN SYRIA
17 September, 2015
This article is undergirded by a fundamental assumption: Russian military forces started to participate in the Syrian conflict actively. On the other hand, it’s profitable for Arab media to speculate over this fact because such reports raise up morale of the Syrian forces and frighten terrorists.