Turkey Eyes a Military Incursion Into Iraq
Turkey announced the official end of its Euphrates Shield incursion into Syria as March 2017 came to a close. But Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has already suggested that future Turkish operations will “not a Syrian dimension, also an Iraqi dimension.” “There are the Tal Afar and... Read more
Flights From Syrian Base Fell Sharply After U.S. Strike
Ever since U.S. President Donald Trump ordered two Navy warships to launch 59 BGM-109 Tomahawk missiles at the Shayrat Air Base in Syria in the pre-dawn hours of April 7, 2017, there is no end to the controversy over the background and outcome of the operation. Misinformation abounds, for... Read more
Two Days Inside the Battle for West Mosul
Inside an old hotel on the edge of West Mosul’s Old City, a Federal Police marksman takes aim with his rifle. A small circle of light beaming in from outside the room reflects off his PSL’s telescopic sight onto his eyeball. He concentrates, staring through a small crack between... Read more
Trump’s Cruise Missile Strike Could Be a Sign of Weakness
The Trump administration’s bombing of Syria’s Shayrat airbase with 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles, in response to a Syrian chemical attack less than 72 hours before, is comparable to the Clinton administration’s heavy reliance on such weapons. Clinton used the Tomahawks, along with air strikes, to reprimand Saddam for his... Read more
How Will Russia Respond to Trump’s Tomahawk Strike?
The Pentagon released a statement that the United States notified Russian forces in Syria in advance of the 59 Tomahawk-cruise-missile barrage against Shayrat Airfield on Thursday night. Likewise, National Security Advisor H. R. McMaster said at a press conference: “here was an effort to minimize … risk to third-country... Read more
Latin America Again Dominates the World’s 50 Deadliest Cities
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. Venezuela’s capital Caracas has been ranked as the world’s deadliest city for a second year in a row, while Latin America still dominates the annual list with 43 of the 50 most violent urban centers. According to the yearly ranking by the... Read more
U.S. Cruise Missiles Struck Syrian Base With Impressive Precision
Syria built Shayrat air base in the mid-1970s, applying lessons from the October 1973 Arab-Israeli War. Its purpose was to bolster air defenses against Israeli air strikes targeting the towns along the Syrian coast of the Mediterranean Sea. In 1983 and 1984, locally-based units of the 50th Brigade received... Read more
Trump Pummels Syrian Air Base With Missiles—Which Is Very Clinton-esque
On April 7 at 4:40 a.m., Syria time, 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles fired from U.S. Navy destroyers slammed into Shayrat Airfield, an important Syrian military base and the source of the nerve gas attack which killed dozens of civilians days before at Khan Sheikhoun, according to U.S. Pres. Donald... Read more
U.S. and Syrian Allies Stormed Across a Lake, Then Overran This Key Air Base
In late March 2017, the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces captured Al Tabqa air base from Islamic State militants in northeast Syria with U.S. air and artillery support. The operation followed an airborne assault across Lake Assad by 500 SDF fighters and U.S. troops— a bold maneuver and the first of its kind by... Read more
In Colombia’s Coca Corridor, Gangsters Fight for Power
This article originally appeared at InSight Crime. The ELN has denied responsibility for the killing of five civilians in the Colombian department of Chocó. The latest violence shows the zone’s valuable strategic position and highly lucrative criminal economies are worth fighting over by criminal groups following the demobilization of the... Read more
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