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JUNE 2021

International Military Review – Syria, June 22, 2016

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Syrian Arab Army and Hezbollah units have entered the al-Bahariyah village in Eastern Ghouta, engaging in heavy clashes with militants that had controlled the town. Following series of clashes, the SAA and its allies liberated the village and the nearby Al-Bahariyah Hill and continued advances in the Jisreen Farms.

In the province of Raqqa, ISIS militants have taken control of Khirbat Zaydān and Bir Abu al `Allaj, moving close to the Zakia crossroads. 23 SAA soldiers have been killed and 49 injured during the ISIS counter-attack. Heavy clashes are ongoing.

The US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces have seized the village of Arima. Now, the SDF is deployed in about 19km from the Al Bab city in Aleppo province. Meanwhile, the SDF is still not able to reach the center of Manbij.

Sources in the Al Nusra Front terrorist group (Al Qaeda in Syria) says that Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zenki will turn over a Russia-made T-90 main battle tank to Al Nusra after a sharia ruling. The Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zenki militant group is the so-called “CIA vetted” group that receives TOW missiles and other equipment from the US. However, this does not prevent it from cooperation with Al Qaeda in Syria. We remember Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zenki captured a sophisticated Russian-made T-90S main battle tank on June 9 in battles around the Mallah Farms in Northern Aleppo.

Almost since the start of the Syrian war, the Syrian military has suffered a lack of trained personnel. The general staff has tried to compensate this with massive usage of artillery, battle tanks and other kinds of military equipment. However, massive usage of anti-tank weapons by militant groups, opposing to the Syrian government, has leaded to a high loss rate of the SAA’s military equipment. According to local sources, about a half of these losses is light damaged military equipment abandoned at the battlefield that could be easily evacuated and restored. Even massive delivers of modern weapon systems, including TOS-1 heavy multiple launch thermobaric rocket systems and T90 battle tanks, cannot help if the personnel, often volunteers without a combat experience, cannot use them properly. Additionally, this is one of the reasons why some T-90 and TOS-1 were spotted in Hezbollah and IRGC units operating in Syria instead of the SAA.

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Gabriel Hollows

I remember Russian analysts warning about a Raqqa offensive being harder than it seems, because the city was out of the Russian bomber’s flight range and thus air support would be minimal. ISIS already outnumbered the SAA in the region and it seems they conducted their offensive without waiting for Iranian nor Hezbollah reinforcements. This foolishness was probably motivated by Assad’s promise to the Syrian parliament of retaking Raqqa within a few months.

I seriously hope they learn some humility before it’s too late.

John Whitehot

raqqa is not at all outside russian bombers range, they have SU-34 and 24 frontal bombers with hundreds of miles range, even su-25s are able to deploy in the area from hmeinym.


How could bombers be out of range? The whole Mideast is within range of those bombers!


The range is enough to hit more or less stationary targets (as US-led coalition does, bombing Manbij). Mobile units in the desert (for example, the range of the road to Tabaqa) are another issue.


They invented endurance CAS for that, attacking targets of opportunity. Such as those Su-25s.. oh wait. They withdrew those, brilliant move.

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