The military situation in Syria.14.02.2017 | Colonel Cassad

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The military situation in Syria.14.02.2017

1. Palmyra.

The offensive in the direction of the city continues, but the pace of progress is relatively low, the army is trying to expand the zone of control of the oil fields to the North from the road Palmyra-Ties based on the intersection to East of the airbase.

The enemy is a chilling effect, gradually moving to the line of Kuwaitis-Gazal-Shaer. With the ousting of the enemy to the North, the army will be able to equip a chain of strongholds to the North of the road and proceed to the operations directly against Palmyra. The continued destruction of the city clearly indicates that the Caliphate intends to maximize the media effect, destroying what they did Palmyra politically relevant. To quickly thwart these plans, the SAA is now unlikely.But in any case, the capture of Palmyra required for development of the operations associated with the access to Deir-ez-Zor, so the city is likely to be released in March-April. To ensure operation in the Eastern Qalamoun and heavy fighting near the airbase of al-Sin, should constrain the power of the Caliphate South of Palmyra and to prevent the pressure of “black” on the southern flank of the coming of the Palmyra group.

At the moment the SAA here have grasped the initiative. The Caliphate passed to a mobile defense, but misses no opportunity to counterattack, causing the Syrians heavy losses in men and materiel. In turn, the SAA and its allies, using technical and numerical superiority, causing the defeat of the Caliphate where he tries to go to on the static defense and there is an opportunity to more effectively use artillery and aviation.

2. Al-Bab.

Tadif, Bza ah and Cubicin, still not fully recovered. The assault of the Western neighborhoods of al-Bab, which are groups of FSA and the Turkish infantry, bogged down in a stubborn defense of the militants that have not yet been willing to hand over al-Bab. A full supply al-girl group “black” is essentially stopped, although to get to the boiler is still quite possible. SAA after reaching the boundary line (although Tadif has yet to fully take), gradually intensifying operations to the North-East of Covaris, ready to advance to the Euphrates. The main purpose of Deir Hafir. Further avibase Giro. Over the past two days in this direction were occupied by several villages. The Turks in turn denoting the priority in al-Bab to expand the control zone to the East of the city, and again became embroiled in conflict with Kurds, which in the absence of a political solution to the Kurdish question, is objectively inevitable, if we remember that Turkey appeared in Syria not to fight the Caliphate, but primarily to prevent the American plans for the Kurds.

3. Raqqa.

After the start of the offensive SDF/YPG with the support of the USA to the North-East of Raqqa, the Kurds have been fast enough to make significant progress, taking part of the countryside and several villages on the outskirts of the capital of the Caliphate. The rapid advance of Kurdish light infantry and the support of the American aircraft easily broke through the veil of “black” to the North-East of Raqqa, and attempts to counter them by throwing in the reserves do not give the desired results. The Kurds suffered losses, but kept the occupied territories, which creates prerequisites for further “crimping” of Raqqa to the East. The Caliphate predictably is not engaged here in a General battle, as in the West, diverting the main forces nearer the city, where will be rendered strong resistance. For the Kurds this scheme is very convenient because it can be quite painless to expand the territory Rojava to the South. The Americans in turn create the preconditions for the assault itself Raqqa, which will come in the spring and summer of this year, because the current group of Kurds are unlikely to provide complete encirclement and capture of Raqqa.

4. Idlib.

In Hama and Idlib continues the internecine civil war between the factions of “green”. Over the past week in fighting for the “purity of Islam” were killed more than 180 people (among the dead were some of the commanders, who during the autumn battles was in command of the attack of militants on the 3000 buildings in Aleppo. The Syrians to kill him could not, but their reach). A significant advantage in these battles was on the side of “Al-Nusra” and its allies. Of course, in these conditions, the militants of the is extremely difficult to count on the successful operation West of Aleppo and in the Northern Hama. On the contrary, bloody Orgy in the Northern Hama, touched Latinsky the projection (which is army unsuccessfully tried to cut back in October 2015), which also started the battles between “Ahrar al-sham and Jund al-Aqsa”. All this creates a tempting opportunity to strike on Latinskom the ledge, after militants there is still a little weak.
Given the fact that the moderate plans to continue to participate in the negotiations in Astana, as well as to go to Geneva, the gap between “moderate” and “Al-Nusra”, will continue to grow. Not everyone is ready to stop fighting and it’s not only the militants themselves, but also their sponsors. This was highlighted in Deraa.

5. Deraa.

Yesterday gunmen suddenly warmed front in Deraa, to launch an offensive in the city on a Syrian army position. During the fighting on February 13-14, they significantly pushed the army units, taking several areas and achieving such a rare “green” success in fighting with government forces. It is worth mentioning that in 2016 South special changes were made. The last really major event – taking Sheikh-Miskin SAA, there has been more than a year ago. And so, on this front I decided to warm up. Local groups FSA supplied through Jordan, and their main sponsors here in Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Apparently, left on the sidelines of the negotiation process, the Gulf monarchies decided to remind about themselves by giving new tools and weapons to local fighters to showcase their subjectivity in the Syrian war. So what kind of tactical changes in the neighborhoods of Dara’a, you can see the characteristic political demonstration, which, as it says – do not forget about Saudi Arabia and Qatar, not only because Turkey has influence on the Syrian terrorist group. For SAA, this activity really shouldn’t have happened as the liberated forces were thrown into the fighting in East HOMS, Eastern ghouta, to the borders of raqqa province. If the difficulties in Deraa will increase, Damascus most likely will have to send part of the reserves is a priority sector of the front.

Otherwise:

a) the Deir ez-Zor. With no significant changes. The enclave is still split between its parts from 500 to 700 meters. Fights are developed in a positional way.

b) Eastern ghouta. SAA continues operations in the area Nachamie, continuing to chew off pieces of the enclave. Everything here has been slow.

C) Russia has sent to Syria for additional military police forces. Marked and the active delivery of armored vehicles (tanks and various armored combat vehicles) for the Syrian army.

g) In the next couple of months are expected to be in active operation sponsored by the CIA, “New Syrian Army” in the southern regions of the country. Operations must be directed against the Caliphate and will take control of the borders with Iraq and Jordan.

d) for 1-2 months Turkey will deploy in Syria for at least 1 mechanized and 1 motorized infantry brigade, which should increase the ability to conduct active operations after the capture of al-Bab.

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