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Military Situation In Northwestern Syria On December 16, 2018 (Map Update)

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  • The situation in the northwestern Syrian region of Afrin is escalating amid reports that the Turkish Army and its proxies are preparing to launch an attack on Kurdish militais, which operate east of the Euphrates;
  • Clashes between militants and the Syrian Arab Army continue to erupt on a constant basis in northern Hama.
Military Situation In Northwestern Syria On December 16, 2018 (Map Update)

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  • You can call me Al

    The great wheels are turning faster and faster towards a monumental victory for the heroic Syrians.

    PS They need to keep their eyes and ears open and cover their backs.

  • RichardD

    What to do about the DMZ agreement is certainly a pertinent question at this juncture. Soon after an initial positive start involving reports of heavy weapons withdrawal from the DMZ by the terrorists. The implementation of the agreement appears to have almost completely stalled. There was one report about a withdrawal of terrorists from Idlib to Turkey. But no numbers were given, and what faction of terrorists who were withdrawn was also not specified. Given that Turkey has been injecting terrorists for years. The reported withdrawal probably doesn’t mean much.

    What is widely reported is that the Russian patrols of the DMZ in the terrorist portion of it, let alone the main highways, haven’t even started yet. And the terrorists are violating the agreement with attacks on the SAA and civilians on an almost daily basis. Including chemical weapons attacks. The question that needs to be answered is who is to blame for the non implementation for most of the agreement’s provisions? There are no reports that I’m aware of of the SAA trying to move the front lines forward into the DMZ. And all or most of the SAA strikes appear to be retaliatory in response to provocations by the terrorists.

    There are a lot of reports of the terrorists rejecting the agreement in whole or in part. What role the Turks have played in this is unclear. What is clear is that the primary responsibility for bringing the terrorists into compliance with the agreement rests with Turkey. And the Turk’s inability and or unwillingness to facilitate compliance with the agreement has to be taken into consideration once the remaining deadline is reached on December 31st. As to whether an extension should be granted.

    Absent further implementation between now and the remaining deadline. The agreement is far enough along as to be able to judge the various party’s ability and willingness to implement it. While it’s true that the agreement has brought relative calm to the area. It hasn’t quelled terrorist violence completely. And it doesn’t look like it’s going to. No responsible government is going to allow ongoing terrorist attacks against military and civilian targets without mitigating them. The SAA’s mitigation efforts have been constrained by compliance with the agreement preventing the acquisition of territory by parties to the agreement.

    • RichardD

      Barring an official extension or replacement of the agreement on or before December 31st. The SAA will be free to resume territory recovery on January first. The resumption of recovery operations doesn’t prevent the agreement from being extended or replaced after December 31st. But until it is. There is nothing constraining a resumption of SAA advances on January 1st when the agreement lapses and becomes null and void. Which is probably what should be done.

      Granted the Turkish “observation posts” are in place. But so far all that they’ve observed for the most part is the non implementation of the DMZ agreement. I wouldn’t suggest attacking them if they don’t attack the SAA. Or at this stage cordoning them off and preventing resupply. But they only occupy less then 1% of terrorist occupied Idlib. And there’s no military necessity to go after them when 99% of the rest of the occupied area can be cleared of the terrorists responsible for attacks and agreement non compliance.

      Unless the outposts are involved in aiding and abetting the terrorists. Then they become fair game on an as needed basis. And until Syria resolves the issue with the YPG/PKK forces embedded with it in the buffer zone between Afrin and Aleppo. The Turks are just going to say that Syria is aiding and abetting terrorists also.

      My view is that on or after January 1st. The DMZ agreement should be declared null and void for material breach of contract on the part of the Turks and terrorists that they’ve been supporting for the entire war. Unless it’s extended or replaced. And that at least limited recovery operations should be resumed.

  • Willing Conscience (The Truths

    If the Turks aren’t out of SOUTHERN Idlib, by the end of Orthodox Christmas, Jan 7 Christmas, so say the 14th or 15th, I hope the SAA and Russia make their new year hell on earth, but hopefully they’ll be out by then and making the US’s life hell instead, hopefully during Christmas itself, it’s something I’m sure Erdogan would love to do to ruin the US’s merry Christmas and new year.