International Military Review – Syria, June 6, 2016

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Pro-government forces, led by the Syrian Arab Army’s 4th Mechanized Division and Desert Hawks and supported by the Russian Aerospace Forces, are advancing deeper into the Raqqa province. By the situation on June 5, the pro-government forces seized the city of Zakia, the nearby Zakia crossroads and the village of Bir Abu al’Allaj. Now, the SAA and its allies need to seize the Tabaqa Military Airport and consolidate the gain in the area, setting the ground for further advances on the ISIS self-proclaimed capital, Raqqa. The Syrian government forces use Russian-made T90C main battle tanks in the area. This confirms the importance of the operation for the Syrian government.

Thus, despite the complicated situation in the province of Aleppo, where the Jaish al-Fatah operation room successfully advances near the city of Khan Tuman, the Syrian government forces have started a competition with the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), dubbed “Who will seize Raqqa?” Indeed, the situation in the Aleppo City is also complicated for the predominantly Kurdish SDF. On June 4, the Russian Ministry of Defense reported that Kurdish units have withdrawn from the Sheikh Maqsoud district of the Aleppo city under the perssure of Al Nusra and Ahram al-Sham. Militants used rocket artillery, mortars and anti-aircraft cannons to attack neighborhoods of the city. About 40 civilians and troops were killed by the shelling and some 100 injured. We remember, in May, the Russian military staff reported that Al Nusra front concentrated a 6,000-strong attack force in the area of Aleppo.

The SDF, supported by the US-led coalition air power and spearheaded by U.S. special operation forces, continued military operations in the areas nearby to the city of Manbij. The approaching SDF units encircle the ISIS-controlled Manbij from northern and southern flanks. Recently, the SDF seized the village of Kabir al-Kabir, located 5 kilometers south of Manbij. However, this operation in Northern Aleppo has withdrawn a significant force of the SDF and its US supporters, halting the attempts to launch a full-scale operation to liberate the city of Raqqa in the nearest future.

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  • Omar Saleh

    This yankie Kurdish alliance is nothing but trouble. The SAA, the Russians and their allies have to be wary of them. I wish Erdogan would get rid of his pride and apologize to Russia and President Assad and unite with them to fight the terrorists in ISIS and this new Kurdish threat to peace in Syria. The Americans (directed by the Tel Aviv regime) want to divide Syria based on divisions that do not exist in the real world and this Kurdish state will hurt Syria and Turkey alike. No one will benefit from this except Israel, as they want a weak and divided Syria.

    • Alex M

      The Kurds have built the Middle East’s first secular democracy with rights for women and ethnic & religious minorities. The YPG/YPJ are bringing freedom, social justice, grassroots direct democracy and women’s equality & libertarian socialism. They’re also bringing peace & stability to the areas under their control. In Rojava, everyone, Atheist, Christian, Sunni, Shia, Alawi, Druz, Turkmen, Arab, Yazidi, Syriac, Man, Woman, all are equal.
      Turkey has been an Islamist theocracy ever since Erdogan took power in 2002. They throw comedians and journalists in prison for daring to criticise or ridicule Erdogan’s fascism and he supports Islamists across the region (from Libya to Syria). He’s part of the same Islamist Muslim Brotherhood ideology that is destroying the region. Rojava will be a beacon to the rest of the Middle East.

      • Woman had good rights under British rule, and under Syria and Iran and Lebanon. So I have no idea what you mean that Kurds built the first democracy. That is not even true.
        I do know that Kurds tried to conquer northern Iran about 6 years ago. The good Iranian people sent the Kurdish-terrorist running for their lives.
        Kurds also work with Mossad and Mi6 to run drugs through Turkey into Europe.
        I guess they support freedom of drug use anyway lol

        • Alex M

          Women are not anywhere close to equal in Syria, Iran and Lebanon. In Iran if a woman is raped, she may be killed for adultery and women are forcibly veiled. In Syria it is extremely difficult for a woman to divorce her husband while the husband need only say “I divorce you” three times. In Lebanon girls as young as 9 years old can be married and there is no concept of spousal rape! Just because it’s better than Saudi Arabia doesn’t mean women are equal.
          You’re believing Islamist lies. The kurds in Iran (P-JAK) don’t want to conquer anything. They want a democratic-federal-secular Iran with women’s equality, rights for religious & ethnic minorities, direct democracy and human rights.
          https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d8f1aaa69f69efb947ba855c16b574f0c53b150ca9f042bb6573878ff6c0d64f.jpg

  • Jacek Wolski

    I’m not sure how you can label the offensive on Raqqa a ‘competition’?! That is a very frivolous word to describe a life and death situation for soldiers on both side of the offensive ie. YPG and the SAA. In matters not who gets there first. There is still a LONG way to go before victory is achieved. And judging by history, manking just can’t get along amongst themselves. Always arguing about who’s right. Perhaps WW3 would achieve the enternal prize. Utter silence

  • Dr. Ronald Cutburth

    One can use the word competition for strategic planning conflicting issues. Sometimes its easier to explain using a more simple word. There is real havoc going on; But Syria army with Russian air support provide a winning team.