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June Q&A: Persian Gulf Conflict, Situation In Syria And Yemeni War

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This is the fifth of our monthly Q&A videos. The questions were collected via a special post on the SouthFront Patreon account.

The first question comes from Hamza Tahiri: What is the current overall situation in Syria?, and can we take what Hezbollah leader said about invading northern Israel seriously? I mean is it even possible? with one nation having almost exclusive control of air and sea.

Answer: As we’ve noted in several of our videos, after the defeat of ISIS, the Syrian conflict entered into a low intensity phase. Nonetheless, this does not mean that the conflict is anyway near its end.

The northeastern part of the county as well as a chunk near al-Tanf is controlled by the US-led coalition and its proxies. Through its influence on the Kurdish elites, Washington successfully put an end to any kind of constructive negotiations between the Damascus leadership and the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). The SDF and its leaders put their shirts on the US military presence in the country and is not likely to make any steps towards the real normalization of the relations with the Assad government without a direct order from Washington as long as US troops are deployed in Syria. The US sees the SDF as its main tool of influence on the ground in Syria and is endorsing the Kurdish separatism. At the same time, the Trump administration demonstrated that it is not going to throw large sums of money into the SDF-proclaimed pseudo-autonomy. Notable projects to restore infrastructure of northeastern Syria are not expected under the SDF control. The humanitarian crisis is especially deep in coalition-affiliated camps for families of ISIS members and displaced persons.

In comparison, the Damascus government, with help from Russia, Iran and even China, is undertaking large-scale efforts to restore key infrastructure objects, including energy, medical, education facilities and roads, despite the large-scale sanctions imposed by the US-led bloc.

The northwestern part of Syria is occupied by Turkey and its proxies. Under the Turkish control, the area of Afrin and the northern countryside of Aleppo have been turned into a hub of organized crime. This as well as a radical ideology of most of Turkish-backed ‘moderate groups’ are among the main destabilizing factors. The ideological similarity of Turkish-backed ‘moderates’ with al-Qaeda and thus, ISIS, also plays a role.

The inability of Ankara to establish a proper discipline among its proxies allows Kurdish rebels affiliated with the People’s Protection Units and the Kurdistan Workers Party to carry out successful attacks in Afrin. These attacks have so far resulted in dozens casualties among the Turkish Army and pro-Turkish armed groups.

Another point of instability is the Idlib de-escalation zone, which, despite the Astana agreements and establishment of the supposed demilitarized zone and observation posts, is mostly controlled by Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra) and affiliated organizations. The National Front for Liberation, a coalition of militant groups crated with help of Turkey, openly cooperates with the terrorists and even participated in recent clashes with the Syrian Army on the side of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham.

It remains unlikely that the so-called moderate opposition will be separated from the “terrorists” in the Idlib zone without a wide-scale military operation against Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and its allies. Ankara is in a fierce opposition to such an operation because it sees it as a threat to own influence in this part of Syria and is not interested in the further strengthening of the Assad government.

The ISIS threat remains on the table despite the fall of its self-proclaimed Caliphate. ISIS cells are active on the eastern bank of the Euphrates, within the SDF-held area, in the Idlid de-escalation zone and in the Homs-Deir Ezzor desert.

As to the open conflict between Hezbollah and Israel, it is unlikely that it will broke out in the nearest future. Nonetheless, it may start in the event of a bigger regional escalation, for example as a result of the open military confrontation between Iran and the US. Another important factor is the total Israeli dominance in the air and naval power over Hezbollah.

The second question is from i: If the USA attacks Iran, how will this affect life for Americans living in India and the UAE? I ask because I have family there

Answer: In the current conditions, an open military confrontation between the US and Iran is an unlikely scenario. Nonetheless, the both sides exploit the concept of the external enemy for own political purposes and employ various measures in the ongoing geopolitical confrontation. The Trump administration turned the Iranian question into one of the central parts of its political agenda. Inside the US, it allows Washington to increase military-industrial complex spending even further. In terms of foreign policy, it gives the US an additional justification to continue its hard-core anti-Iranian and pro-Israeli policy as well as to boost its military and diplomatic presence in the Middle East. Iran uses the situation to expand own influence on Shia armed groups and movements across the Greater Middle East.

The conflict in Yemen is an important hot point in the ongoing confrontation. The Saudi invasion in the country caused a wide-scale humanitarian crisis and thousands of civilian casualties. Nonetheless, the Saudi-led coalition has failed to achieve a military victory in the confrontation with Ansar Allah (the Houthis). Ansar Allah retaliatory strikes on infrastructure in Saudi Arabia and the UAE became a major problem for the coalition. Most of the attacks were aimed at targets in Saudi Arabia, but the UAE was also targeted. Recently, the UAE made a decision to decrease its military presence in Yemen. Therefore, it became even a less likely target for Ansar Allah attacks.

In the event of further escalation of the regional situation, it is conceivable that groups allied with Iran, including Ansar Allah, could attack US forces or infrastructure objects. However, in the current situation, it does not seems that the UAE or India will be in the list.

In general, the confrontational US policy turned the Middle East into a gunpowder barrel that may explode at any moment. Nonetheless, the US seems to be unable to carry out a successful open military action against Iran without notable consequences and thus losses for itself or its key allies, like Israel. The limitations of the US capabilities are clear for US regional allies like the UAE or Qatar, that had demonstrated this by their restrained response to the tanker incidents in the Persian Gulf.

The third question comes from ABfield: Where are the new, additional 2,000 US soldiers being sent to in the Middle East?

Answer: This is an interesting question. The US revealed that they will be deployed in the CENTCOM area of responsibilities, but provided little details regarding the operation. Nonetheless, according to reports, these troops are primarily intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance (ISR); force protection; and engineers. Therefore, most likely they will be deployed in US facilities across the Persian Gulf region, including the US Air Base in Qatar.

The fourth question is from Steven Howard: What is the political situation in Moldova, especially given the threats that have been reportedly made against the President and his family?

Answer: Moldova has been in the state of a constant political crisis since the election in February. The core of this crisis is the struggle between the previously ruling Democratic Party of Moldova controlled by oligarch Vladimir Plahotniucand and the coalition of the ACUM and the Socialist Party of President Igor Dodon.

Over the past years, Plahotniuc and his faction have been selling off the country’s resources and driving the revenue from the European Union under the cover of the liberal rhetoric. As a result Moldova’s economy has sharply depreciated causing hardship for people and caused a series of political and corruption crises that undermined the influence of Plahotniuc’s party. This resulted in a major failure in the recent parliament election. Using the existing influence and corruption schemes, the Plahotniuc-led bloc attempted to prevent the ACUM and the Socialist Party from forming the government and seize the power, but it failed to do so. One of the reasons was the lack of support from the EU, which found liberal rhetoric not enough to invest in the Plahotniuc political and corruption games and further.

Plahotniuc fled Moldova on June 15. According to reports in local media, he is now hiding in London from possible charges in multiple corruption cases and organized crime. Even US Ambassador in Moldova Dereck J. Hogan stressed that the US will extradite Plahotniuc if it receives a properly motivated request.

Additionally, the Russian Interior Ministry accuses Plahotniuc of being part of an international group that specialized in trafficking large quantities of Moroccan hashish to Russia and other nearby countries, as well as illegally removed over 37 billion rubles from Russia.

The attitude of the EU and the US towards its allied Moldovan oligarch demonstrate that with his cynical actions beyond any norms of morality he had passed all red lines. His criminal activities put the US administration and its allies among the European bureaucrats in a complicated position. So, if he’s really behind threats to Moldova’s President, this will aggravate his situation even further. In the coming two weeks, we are planning to release a more detailed overview on the developments in Moldova.

The fifth question is from S.cor: What domestic dangers will the US face at home over 2019 and 2020, and how will power blocks play into said circumstances?

Answer: As we can realize the question is about the forthcoming presidential election, which is set to take place in 2029, and the problem of expanding divisions within society over ethnic, religious and ideological differences. For example, the self-described ‘liberals’ have launched a campaign to revise the American history and the role of personality in it. At the first stage, this campaign targeted generals of the South during  the American Civil War. This situation is further complicated by a growing gap between the elites and ordinary US citizens, problems with the healthcare, pension coverage, veterans’ reintegration into the social life, illegal migration and other issues.

If your question is about this situation and how it may lead to the destabilization of the US in 2019 or 2020, our answer is that this is unlikely. These issues have not reached a critical mass after which the situation would develop by its own logic. Currently, the US political elites have all needed instruments and employ them to control social tensions.

These are all the questions, which we received in June. On Patreon you will find a post where you can ask your questions for the July Q&A video.

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  • Pavel Pavlovich

    As an expert on post-Soviet issues, I must reprimand you on account of your incomplete answer on Moldova.

    What happened is that by way of guile (turning factions against another) Putin has managed to eliminate 1 one 3 major anti-Russian forces in Moldova. Now we have only 2 left: pro-Romania and pro-Russia (reunion).

    • Greetings, Pavel Pavlovich,
      Thank you for the feedback. “As an expert on post-Soviet issues”, feel free, to provide your expert look at the current situation in Moldova and how “Putin” influenced it “to eliminate 1 one 3 major anti-Russian forces”. SF is always glad to publish a point of view if it’s based on facts, fact-based expert opinions and logic. Contact email: info@southfront.org
      Sincerely yours,
      SF Team

      • Pavel Pavlovich

        I meant one of two. My bad.
        The third is Dodon’s party and is pro-reunification.

    • occupybacon

      Plahotniuc reflects the stupidity of the entire Moldavian nation: They thought they are the lamb that sucks milk from multiple sheep. They thought they are outsmarting everyone. Actually they are the poorest and dumbest people in Europe.

  • Jacob “Wraith” Wohl

    IDF preparing for more massive airstrikes against the butcher regime and its irgc backers in Syria. Meanwhile, US Airforce and Navy preparing massive strikes against Iran in case of nuclear enrichment. Israel and USA both ready to destroy every single Iranian nuclear reactor in existence with bunker busters!

    • Jacob Wohl’s Nose

      Bunker Busters would still fail to reduce the size of your NOSE, kike lord :)

      • Concrete Mike

        LMAO

    • Kandinski

      Yes, you are chosen garbage. Everyone should serve you.

    • Kandinski

      Wannabe savior, aka wannabe superior “human” piece of crap.

    • Hisham Saber

      Neither the U.S., Israel or both together are in a strategic, financially, socially acceptable position to start a war against Iran, or her proxies.

      Bunker busters don’t penetrate deep down mountain tunnels. And that’s where Iran’s ballistic missiles of various degrees are placed. You know, the ones that can swarm Israel, overwhelming any possible countermeasures. The North Koreans taught the Iranians how to dig these underground facilities.

      Iran essentially has every square foot/meter if Israel mapped out for ballistic missile bombardment in redundancy. And has missiles numbering in the hundreds of thousands. Israel or the U.S. decide to foolishly use nuclear weapons on Iran will kill its own self.

      Iran , and rightfully so, has weapons grade enriched uranium and plutonium. It has the nuclear triggers, it has the means to deliver nuclear warheads, by way of its heavy lift ballistic missiles that are designed for heavy warheads. Again, North Korea helped some. As soon as a nuclear strike is performed on Iran or its allies, Iran will annul , rescind, and reverse the running ‘ Fatwa ‘ against nuclear weapons and assemble some. Given Israel has no strategic depth to speak of, its in a very tight position. And Israel society is neither psychologically, militarily ( demoralized IDF after their dismal performance against Hezbollah in 2006) ready for a protracted major conflict. Israel cannot sustain itself, and will become a basket case feeding totally on U.S. taxpayers backs, immediately following a large scale conflict with Iran, and her allies.

      Iran and her allies today stand ready to overrun, overwhelm anyone and anywhere in the greater Middle East. Its long reach can put the Arab monarchies out of action and business, causing them to crumble , toppled, or outright overrun by the est. 400 million Shia of the Shia crescent. By way of ballistic missile strikes, Iran can destroy the critical oil and gas infrastructure of U.S allied Arab Persian Gulf regimes. The House of Saud will probably be the first to go. With the Houthi’s having overrun Saudi Arabia. Gone are the trillions these Arab regimes have to spend on purchasing dollars to boost the U.S. economy, backed by the Petro-dollar.

      In essence, any attack on Iran would see Israel annihilated, and done away with as an abject failure tossed to the dustbin of world history, and the U.S., Britain and France expelled from the greater Middle East for good.

      There to fill the void, and is already planning and building what will ultimately save the Arabs of the Middle East from a destiny not unlike that of the American Indians, at the hands of the U.S., which is controlled by an international Jewish criminal , evil syndicate, will be China. Backed up by Russia. You see, China has been busy building their gargantuan , truly global OBR Silk Roads.
      One of the main routes, and a crucial part of the OBR is the route from China to the Medi Sea. Its already reached Iran, via a non-stop high speed cargo rail lines and energy pipelines being built. After Iran, the OBR will go through Iraq, and the Chinese have pledged to help rebuild Iraq, then it goes through Syria, where the Chinese are already there, busy building back up critical infrastructure and vital supplies, much more coming, then its final stop over land will be at the giant port for maritime shipping China is busy building in Lebanon. Where then, by shipping, will go to Europe, South-Latin America, and link up with another port in Tripoli that the LNA of Libya has been showing a big interest in joining the OBR.

      Incidentally, Israel lobbied China hard for it to choose Israel, by which its imagination is that the ‘ Deal of the Century ‘ will let it exert maximum pressure for obedience from the Arabs, for the last stop for this major route of the OBR. When the Chinese wisely figured out, and calculated that the ‘ Deal of the Century ‘ will be a major flop, still born abomination, they rightfully picked Lebanon.
      Right after China declared Lebanon beneficiary, suddenly the U.S. imposed a 200 billion dollar trade tariff’s on Chinese goods, Causing China to reciprocate, leading to the ongoing trade war.

      Two systems in the world today, the old semi-colonial hegemony, belligerence and financially Jewish run U.S. system, and now there has emerged a new, dynamic system that treats the world as one, linked together culturally, financially, through mutually international trade and a , like Chinese President Xi likes to call a ‘ win-win ‘ framework.

      • PZIVJ

        “Iran , and rightfully so, has weapons grade enriched uranium and plutonium.”
        This sounds like Zionst fake news. Prove your point, :/

        • RichardD

          For what it’s worth Iran isn’t far from an entry level atomic device, at least in theory, probably a truck bomb or maybe one of their larger missiles, made with weapons usable but not normally weapons grade Uranium:

          “Highly enriched uranium (HEU) has a 20% or higher concentration of 235U. The fissile uranium in nuclear weapon primaries usually contains 85% or more of 235U known as weapons-grade, though theoretically for an implosion design, a minimum of 20% could be sufficient (called weapon(s)-usable) although it would require hundreds of kilograms of material and “would not be practical to design””

          – Enriched uranium –

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enriched_uranium

          “a self-sustaining chain reaction in a nuclear weapon cannot occur in depleted or natural or low-enriched uranium and is only theoretically possible in LEU of roughly 10 percent or greater”

          – Nuclear bombs from low-enriched uranium –

          https://www.wiseinternational.org/nuclear-monitor/584/nuclear-bombs-low-enriched-uranium-or-spent-fuel

        • Pavel Pavlovich

          It could be pro-Iranian propaganda just as easily. Look at how mighty we are!

        • Hisham Saber

          What would you do if you were in Iran’s shoes. The Iranians haven’t come this far to just sit around and be annihilated. They have a deterrent. Different kinds actually. They have been preparing for war since 1979 with the U.S./Israel., all of whom have a nuclear capability. Even second strike.

      • RichardD

        In 1998 Israel’s purported nuclear doctrin was published:

        “According to historian Avner Cohen, Israel first articulated an official policy on the use of nuclear weapons in 1966, which revolved around four “red lines” that could lead to a nuclear response:[210]

        A successful military penetration into populated areas within Israel’s post-1949 (pre-1967) borders.
        The destruction of the Israeli Air Force.
        The exposure of Israeli cities to massive and devastating air attacks or to possible chemical or biological attacks.
        The use of nuclear weapons against Israeli territory.”

        – Nuclear weapons and Israel –

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nuclear_weapons_and_Israel#Policy

        Iran, nor none of your hypothetical coalition is unlikely to cross the thresholds that will precipitate an Israeli nuclear first strike. Israel almost certainly has fusion devices measured in megatons that they can hit Iran and Israel’s neighbors with. A 1 megaton bomb contains 50 times the tnt tonnage equivalent of the atomic bombs that leveled Japan’s cities. And Israel almost certainly also has tactical atomic devices starting somewhere in the 1 kiloton range for border work.

        Iran could be hit with a first strike that would discontinue it as a functional nation state and make it the world’s biggest disaster area and basket case for decades. Destroying Israel isn’t worth it to Iran or any of the Arab neighbors if the price that they pay is an Israeli nuclear first strike.

        Your “overrun by the est. 400 million Shia of the Shia crescent.” scenario is fantasy. Iran couldn’t even prevent Syria from being overrun by terrorist irregulars without an air force. Russia had to do that. It certainly isn’t going to overrun the Gulf states or Israel with your mythical 400 million. There aren’t even close to that many Shia, half of whom live in Iran with a population of 80 million.
        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6efb5730b3b276814e241f41f7bef587e7358aa740767f68c055953de5433a12.png

        – Shia Islam –

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shia_Islam

      • neil barron

        We shall relegate your air head to the dust bin of history which is mud.

      • Jacob “Wraith” Wohl

        way to group every antagonist in your view as “Jewish”. I read the whole comment and have to say it wont play out like that. US Military and Israeli F-35s will be too strong to fight against. Iran will be forced to negotiate!

        • Jimmy Jim

          You little queer queer kikey….

    • Rhodium 10

      keep on dreaming stupid!….Iran have shot down a global hawk and nothing happened!..British petrol vessel is stopped and fear to pass through Hormuz…

    • Concrete Mike

      Oh ffs iran is enriching to 3% you cant make a bomb with that!!

      Fucken dumbass!

      • Jimmy Jim

        Iran needs to enrich to 90% pronto if it wants to survive…..

        • Concrete Mike

          I will respectfully disagree.

          There is a fatwa prohibiting nuclear weapons.

          Its been 40 years of all kinds of pressure and Iran has survived, i dont see why building nukes would help, that would be bibi’s dream for he would be able to start his suicidal war they want so much.

          Lets hope saner heads will prevail.

    • Jimmy Jim

      aren’t you the little faggot kike turd that gets banned everywhere?

  • Rob

    Iran must produce 1000 nuclear war heads with 200kt yields each and ICBM with 16000km range, otherwise leave the power to more capable leader. This is not the job of Muslim Clerics to compromise the national security and kill their own nation with starvation by US sanctions. Iran must show some might to the world.

    • occupybacon

      Why not 2000 of 500kt?

      • PZIVJ

        Because Rob lives in a different solar system.
        The laws of gravity there is not the same as here.

    • Jimmy Jim

      dude, Iran faces an existential threat and needs at least a dozen 10Kt nukes…the mullahs need to get real and lift the idiotic fatwa against nukes…..

  • Rodney Loder

    Iran is in an amazing strong position, if they don’t take advantage of the present circumstances there is no hope for them.

    You can play these situations too cool and end up sad and sorry, Britain is relying on Trump stepping in on their behalf, probably Trump won’t do that because the Pentagon will refuse to back him up and Trump like Obama September 2013 will leave it up to Congress.

    Britain will be shame faced, what else is new ?.