Syria Daily, June 22: Assad Regime Hangs On at Airbase in South




Special: The Life-Threatening Fuel Crisis in Opposition-Held Areas

Even as the Assad regime puts out PR that it is secure in an important airbase in southern Syria, newly-posted video testifies to the challenge that it faced earlier this month to hold onto the position.

On Sunday, State TV highlighted images of high-ranking officers visiting the al-Thala base, on the border of Daraa and Suweida Provinces, which is home to warplanes such as Su-24 fighters.

Ten days ago, the Southern Front rebel coalition threatened to take over al-Thala, following its capture of the nearby Brigade 52 army base. Fighters took nearby villages, and even moved into part of the complex. However, amid airstrikes and ground resistance that included tanks, the rebels pulled back.

Local sources subsequently said that the attack had been halted by foreign officers at a Jordan operations room, who had not been informed of the rebel offensive, because of sensitivities over entry into Suweida Province with its large Druze religious community. They said the Southern Front was negotiating with Druze leaders, to encourage the withdrawal of their militia who were fighting alongside Assad forces.

See Syria Feature: Joint Operations Room in Jordan Halted Rebel Assault on Key Regime Airbase

Footage of Syrian troops facing the attack:

Reports: Kurds & Rebel Allies Push Islamic State out of Brigade 93 Base in Raqqa Province

Claims are circulating that Kurdish militia and Free Syrian Army allies continued their advance against the Islamic State on Monday, capturing the Brigade 93 base in Raqqa Province in northern Syria.

In the past month, the Kurdish-FSA alliance has closed a 90-km gap between the Kurdish cantons on the Kobane and Cezire cantons along the Turkish border, taking the town of Tel Abyad last week.

The Brigade 93 base, claimed by the Islamic State last August from the regime, is only 55 km (33 miles) from the militants’ Syrian center in the city of Raqqa.

Opposition Coalition: Kurdish Militia Blocks Fact-Finding Committee from Tel Abyad

The externally-based opposition Syrian National Coalition claims the Kurdish YPG militia blocked a fact-finding committee from entering the town of Tel Abyad on Monday.

The committee was established to investigate claims of the forced displacement of Arab families by the Kurdish forces as they advanced on Tel Abyad. The town, near the Turkish border, had been held by the Islamic State since last year.

The claim came as about about 2,000 residents returned to the area from Turkey as a border gate was reopened.

The committee began work on Saturday, meeting dozens of displaced families from Tell Abyad and surrounding villages.

Activist: Regime Threats to Break Hunger Strike By 700 Detainees in Hama Prison

Jawad al-Hamawi, the director of the pro-opposition Hama Revolutionaries Union, says that officials are threatening to break the hunger strike of almost 700 detainees in Hama Prison.

The detainees stopped eating last week to protest sentences, including death penalties and life terms, recently handed down to 45 prisoners involved in revolutionary activity.

Al-Hamawi says threats have included the use of bullets, but the orders to fire were blocked by aid organizations and the Red Cross.

Russia Supplying New Advanced Communications-Jamming Equipment to Syria?

Oryx Blog considers whether Russia is supplying new communications-jamming R-330P platforms to the Assad regime:

The presence of just one of these vehicles could have a significant impact on the ground, making it impossible for the rebels to coordinate their attacks and communicate with each other over the radio, thus possibly thwarting any rebel offensive….

Even in the face of recent setbacks for the Assad regime, it is clear that not all cards have been played yet. While the R-330P platform is not a directly lethal weapon, the far-reaching consequences of utilising such a system is affirmed by rebel offensive successes in Eastern Ukraine, which reportedly made heavy use of electronic warfare (EW) systems and thus completely denied their opponents the ability to communicate and coordinate operations.

Video: Barrel-Bomb Explosion in Hama Province

Moment of barrel-bomb explosion in Lataminah in northern Hama Province on Monday:

Report: Fighting Between Kurds and Assad Militia in Qamishli in Northeast

The pro-Assad al-Masdar News reports, from “multiple sources”, fighting between the Kurdish militia YPG and Syrian militia in the city of Qamishli in northeast Syria.

The website says the YPG and the National Defense Forces fought in the industrial district overnight, with mortar attacks and sustained gunfire until sunrise. It also says there were street fights near the al-Bashir Mosque, with at least four Syrian militiamen wounded.

Tension rose last week after a brief exchange of artillery shells in western Qamishli, followed by the YPG’s takeover of a Ba’ath Party building.

Qamishli in the largely-Kurdish area of northeast Syria near the Turkish border, but the Syrian military has maintained its presence in the city during the four-year conflict.

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    As in Iranian propaganda claims the US founded ISIS and backs ISiS, the mischief never ends. Yet Obama remains convinced that “If I give Iran enough, its hardline ruling mullahs will change.” Chamberlain reasoned the same way in dealing with Hitler. No Obama advisor is more poisonous in this regard than Ben “I love Khamenei” Rhodes.

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    The Idiot-in-Chief, enabler of Assad and ISIS war crimes is totally lacking in empathy if he imagines the rebels are going to sign a pledge not to fight against their prime enemy of the Syrian people, the killers, rapists and torturers of his family.

    Only a strategically clueless nitwit would argue on the one hand that we can’t defeat ISIS without Sunnis forces on the ground while at the same time serving as Assad’s Guardian Angel in Syria and serving as an ally of Iran and its militias in Iraq.

    Obama must have an IR of 10 if he can’t understand that nothing would do more to defeat ISIS and enable a rebel-Druze-Alawite alliance against It than eliminating the Assad regime he insists on protecting to please Iran. Worse yet he plans to give Khamenei $50 billion to keep the radicalizing Assad afloat and make the war last longer as part of his Great Giveaway Deal with Iran–a bonanza packed bargain loaded with concessions.

    This president (the Gift That Keeps on Giving) has his face pressed so deeply into Khamenei’s nether cheeks he can’t see anything else. How much damage will be continue to inflict before his term expires and someone competent, Republican or Democrat, takes his place. This guy is going to go down as the worst foreign policy disaster in American history.

    • Amazing! In America someone with an IR (IQ?) of 10 can become president. I shall go there tomorrow, take his job and become rich. I am down to my last brain cell but it should be adequate.
      RT, Ol’bummer knew very well exactly what he was doing. He has made it look as he was doing something but in the end does nothing. Brilliant! He has out foxed all of you Americans and used you once again to achieve his aims.
      When will you wake up to the fact that he is not stupid? He just has a very different agenda to yours. He is on Bashyer Arsoff’s side and very anti Sunnis. He will be remembered as the president that took America for a ride!

    • RT, it is not that Obama is incompetent. It is that he does not like western civilization — in fact, hates it and blames it for all conceivable miseries.

      • It’s remarkable how much dumber this website’s comments section gets when it stops discussing Syria and attempts to talk about American politics.

  2. Looks like I get to put first comment up today.

    Only one thought for today.

    I wonder if the rebel offensive in Quneitra is being underestimated a bit in terms of coverage. Even on this site.

    The breakthrough in North Quneitra to West Ghouta is particularly interesting. I wonder the long-term impact of the rebels having a supply route into West Ghouta assuming they are able to keep one open. They opened one up a couple of years ago through Deir Adas but it was closed off by the regime not too long after.

    • It may become interesting, but it’s not today. Western Ghouta is itself divided in two. The area south of Mount Sahaya (a mountain brimming with military installations) that has now been de-blockaded and Moudamiya and Daraya north of the mountain that have been blockaded for two years now and are mostly “reconciled”.

      Quneitra makes good press, but strategically leads nowhere. At least at the moment, while Assad still has an airforce and rebels lack heavy weaponry.


    Rebels Attacking One of Aleppo’s Richest Neighborhoods

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    While Obama watches and ponders, ISIL continues to close a checkpoint in countryside north of Aleppo to trucks carrying fuel to rebel held areas in northern. Medecins Sans Frontieres says health centres in rebel-held areas in Aleppo, Idlib &Hama running out of fuel needed to run life-saving equipment. Withhold Coalition aircraft in situations like this is part of Obama’s covert assistance to Iran’s War on Sunnis.

    From Obama’s pro-Iran perspective, it’s essential that ISIS continue to tie up the rebels lest the latter threaten Assad, Iran’s puppet. There is no other possible explanation for not pounding ISIS there.


    If not for Obama’s “Do Nothing Except Cater to Iran” policy since 2011 most of Syria would be intact and unradicalized. JAN and ISIS would be nowhere today. Putin would not have dared invade the Ukraine. All the Bad Guys can truly say, “Obama, we couldn’t have done it without you.” Now his War on Sunnis is backfiring.

    Obama’s covert Mideast alliance with Russia and Iran has rightly made the USA the #1 enemy of Sunnis worldwide. It is a policy encouraged and carried out by Ben Rhodes, Suzy the Micromanager, Val and Dennis McDonough.

    • I don’t think even Hillary Clinton would be half as stupid and destructive as Obama. Obama has a meanness towards freedom, the basic commodity of western civilization. He comes straight from the Marxist-Islamic alliance school of totalitarianism. What scares me most are the people who managed to get him elected for 8 years and what kind of damage they will do to humanity going forward. This is not the last that we will hear from such people.

  4. Israeli Druze, have killed two wounded JaN fighters (the guys attacking Druze across the border in Syria) that were transported in Israeli ambulances to hospital. Seems they have demolished the ambulances.

    • Ali, Interesting! Israeli citizens destroying ambulances inside Israel? What is your source for this information?

      • yeah Bill i also wouldnt admit that i am giving terrorists medical aid and letting them go back to attacking an ethnic group over the border that happens to be the same ethnic group as the one in my country bordering the conflict area

    • Is this the kind of sectarianism promoted by your overlord Bashar? And why do you do his dirty deeds? You claim to be unrelated to Syria, not even a Muslim, and living in the UK. So why do you spread sectarian rumours of the worst kind? How do you figure if a wounded fighter is JaN, and how is it that Israel is helping JaN with its wounded? You have a lot to explain, Bistani. What is your evidence that the Druze were involved?

      • if sectarianism is killing muslim terrorists, then i got some breaking news, the entire west is deeply into sectarianism.

    • You might be able to but first you have to upload an electronic resume, go through a background check, and be subject to vigorous interrogation. Then we will vote on whether you may join the privileged few. Its not easy but its well worth the opportunity to join the ea squad good luck (you will need it) and may god have mercy on your soul.

      • Cool ,Islamic state is collapsing as we speak and not going to be a major force in this civil war in 2- 3 months time !. People will write about “The rise and fall of islamic state” and it will fall faster than it’s rise , Had islamic state played it’s cards right and not been so brutal and attacking minorities and befriended saudi’s , it would have gone far and would be controlling baghdad now .Curious-boy is accurate with his predictions.

        • I think your predictions probably will pan out but I doubt the islamic state will fall before the regime.

          • Two to three months is wildly optimistic. There aren’t even current plans for attacking Mosul. It’s taken 2-3 months just to shape operations for retaking Bayji, which keeps stalling. Ramadi hasn’t even been attacked yet, much less Fallujah. We don’t know if the Kurds will advance to Raqqah. Islamic State is still on the offensive in central Syria. it’s a fluid conflict with wins and losses, but I see no signs of collapse; were it this easy, I would have expected Assad’s regime to collapse years ago.

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