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Syrian War Report – March 16, 2018: Army Evacuated Over 12,500 Civilians From Eastern Ghouta On March 15, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allies liberated the village of Hamuriyah in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta from members of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra, the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda) and Faylaq al-Rahman. The liberation of Hamuriyah allowed the SAA to open a new humanitarian corridor there. Over 12,500 civilians were evacuated from Hamuriyah and nearby areas. Additionally, the SAA once again

Trump, May, Merkel and Macron issue joint statement blaming Russia for Sergei Skripal poisoning

Business Insider reports: full statement (emphasis added) We, the leaders of France, Germany, the United States and the United Kingdom, abhor the attack that took place against Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury, UK, on 4 March 2018. A British police officer who was also exposed in the attack remains seriously ill, and the lives of many innocent British citizens have been threatened. We express our sympathies to them all,

Reader mail: ‘I am more dangerous than a Russian!’

by Ramin Mazaheri for the Saker Blog (and for those, shall we say, cognitively challenged the following is a satire; the Saker) As a daily journalist covering a wide range of fields, I get a lot of unsolicited emails which give me news tips, unique outlooks and recommendations. This email below came with so many threats and oaths against my person that I almost didn’t publish it, but I think

Syrian War Report – March 8, 2018: Syrian Army Liberates Key Town, Advances Further In East Ghouta The Syrian Arab Army (SAA), the Tiger Forces and their allies liberated the town of Bayt Siwa, the Tank Base around Hawsh al-Ash’ari and imposed fire control over the town of Misraba in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta on March 7. Next day, the SAA advanced further on militant positions in Misraba where clashes erupted. If Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra) and its allies lose this town,

Canada’s Envy: Russia and China

by Cameron Pike for the Saker Blog I attended a presentation entitled “Rising China: What Lessons Can We Learn From the 19th Party Congress?”, given by Guy Saint-Jacques, former Canadian ambassador to China under Stephen Harper. Guy was asked a question about China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), after not addressing the BRI in his core presentation. But, being forced to answer the audience member’s question, Guy [say it with

Syrian War Report – March 5, 2018: Tiger Forces Liberate Large Area From Militants In East Ghouta Last weekend, the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), the Tiger Forces, the 4th Armorued Division and other pro-government units delivered a devastating blow to the defense of militant groups in the eastern part of the Eastern Ghouta region, near Damascus. Government forces liberated al-Shaffoniya, Beit Nayem, al-Rayhanah, al-Muhammadiyah and other points and deployed within about 3.5 km of dividing the militant-held area into two separate parts. Jaish al-Islam, Hayat Tahrir

How far can the Americans be pushed?

by Ghassan Kadi for the Saker blog Inspired by the Saker’s article regarding how far can the Russians be pushed, (, I ask, how far can the Americans be pushed, not specifically only in Syria, but in general? In his article, the Saker articulated in his regular rational and captivating style, the issue of Russian patience, or should we say frustration, with America’s actions and inactions in Syria. And, as

The President of Russia delivered his Address to the Federal Assembly

The President of Russia delivered the Address to the Federal Assembly. The ceremony took place at the Manezh Central Exhibition Hall. March 1, 2018 The presentation of the Address was attended by Federation Council members, State Duma deputies, members of the Government, leaders of the Constitutional Court and Supreme Court, governors, speakers of the legislatures of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation, the leaders of traditional religions, public figures, including the heads of regional civic chambers, as well as the leaders of major media outlets. * * * President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Citizens of Russia, members of the Federation Council and State Duma,

Syrian War Report – March 1, 2018: Syrian Army Overruns Militant Defenses In Eastern Ghouta Afrin, Eastern Ghouta and the militant-held part of the province of Idlib remain the two key hot points in Syria. In Eastern Ghouta, government forces have fully liberated the town of Hawsh al-Dawahirah and the al- Shaffoniya roundabout and the Al-Bashoura Air Defense Base from Jaish al-Islam. Intense fighting was also reported  in the neighborhood of Harasta where army troops had advanced on positions of Ahrar al-Sham and Hayat

Afghanistan ready to play connector role in Eurasian integration

The inauguration of TAPI – the Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline – signals Kabul is on-board with the grand project of Eurasian integration by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) One of the top roller-coaster sagas in what, some years ago, I christened Pipelineistan, has yielded a definitive twist. The US$8 billion,1,814-kilometer Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline (TAPI) was officially inaugurated on Friday, in full pomp, and with proceedings broadcast live

How Biblical is Zionism?

by Laurent Guyénot for the Saker Blog Laurent Guyénot is the author of From Yahweh to Zion: Jealous God, Chosen People, Promised Land … Clash of Civilizations, 2018.  ($30 shipping included from Sifting and Winnowing, POB 221, Lone Rock, WI 53556). The biblical mind of Israel’s founding fathers The Hebrew Bible (Tanakh) is for the committed Jew as much a record of his ancient origins, the prism through which all Jewish

Syrian War Report – February 21, 2018: Government Forces Entered Afrin Over the last few days, the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army have captured over a dozen villages from the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the Afrin area. A complicated situation on the frontlines forced the YPG to at least temporarily forget “the US is our only ally” mantra and to start implementing what local sources describe as a Damascus-YPG deal that will allow

The Logic of globalism

by Irinia Medvedva, Tatyana Shishova ‘Nash sovremennik’ 11, 2001 (source: Translation, notes, and afterword by Edvin Buday Note by The Saker: normally such a translation would belong into the “Speeches, Statements, Interviews” section, however, since the translator, Edvin Buday, also offered an important and interesting afterword, this I have decided to post this text in the “guest analyses” section even though the original Russian text was (obviously) not written

China’s ‘New Silk Roads’ reach Latin America

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) Beijing is turbo-charging its infrastructure connectivity across the region and the Caribbean A sharp, geoeconomic shift took place last month in Santiago, Chile at the second ministerial meeting of a forum grouping China and the 33-member Community of Latin American and Caribbean States. The Chinese Foreign Minister, Wang Yi, told his audience that the world’s second-largest economy and

The Black Sea Development Navy Brief 2/18 February 2018

by LeDahu for the Saker Blog   Unprecedented show of power projection by the US Navy with 2 Arleigh Burke class DDGs now deployed in the Black Sea.  The USS ‘Carney’ (DDG 64), on 17 February joined the USS ‘Ross’ (DDG 71) in the Black Sea “to conduct maritime security operations.” LINK #USSCarney🇺🇸 transited #Bosphorus🇹🇷 to join #USSRoss for routine maritime security operations IAW int'l law. C6F Commander VADM Grady

Lessons From History

This comment was chosen by moderator HS from the post  “Syrian War Report – February 13, 2018: Israel Deploys New Anti-Missile Systems Near Syria”. The moderator felt the comment was exceptionally informative. Comment by Auslander Our world is slowly, actually in the last month not so slowly, approaching the active continuation of the war that started in 1914. While there have been interludes of relative ‘peace’, read the main antagonists

Syrian War Report – February 16, 2018: Turkish Forces Capture Large Area In Afrin On February 15, the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA) achieved a major breakthrough in their battle against Kurdish YPG/YPJ forces in the area of Afrin. The TAF and the FSA captured the villages of Karri, Sharbanli, Kamrash, Shadia, Khara Suluq, Jaqla Tahtani, Durakili and Diwan al-Fawqani. The YPG counter-attacked in Sirinjak and Duraqli but failed to achieve any progress. Pro-Turkish sources say that over

Purge of ethnic mafia in Dagestan

by Scott Humor for the Saker Blog WHO WAS ARRESTED AND WHY It all started on February 5, 2018, with the simultaneous arrests of four high profile government officials in Mahachkala. The formal charges against them included theft of federal funds earmarked for the republic’s social services. What is most remarkable is how brazen these people were at first. They even tried to intimidate the arresting officers asking them: “Do

Trump helps to nationalize the Russian business elite (Ruslan Ostashko)

Churchill one said: “You can always count on the Americans to do the right thing after they have tried every thing else”. In the same style, the new idea of Donald Trump with his Kremlin list will not bring about the millionaire rebellion but, on the contrary, will lead to the consolidation of the elites and return of their money to Russia. The process has already started.. Video translated and