Syraq SITREP 16: Victory Over ISIS Prologue to the Next Mideast War?

Warnings Regarding an Israel-Hezbollah War After the Syrian War Winds Down

Now the question is whether U.S.-Russian negotiations, so bitterly opposed by the deep state in Washington, can preclude a major false flag or some other desperate move by ISIS hidden globalist backers. It’s unlikely coincidence, that on the same Memorial Day weekend the Syrian Army and its Russian, Iranian and Iraqi allies all advanced toward Deir Ez Zor and restoring Damascus control over the Syraqi border lands, that a gusher of leaks have again painted the Trump Administration and specifically the President’s son in law Jared Kushner as treasonous for negotiating with Moscow over Syria.

Another looming question, and one we have addressed before in the Syraq SITREPs series, is whether Israel can accept an outcome to the Syrian war that leaves Damascus’ Russian re-armed and re-trained military as well as the Israelis’ toughest enemies in Hezbollah more competent and deadly than ever before. This is a question that has occupied experienced Mideast correspondent Elijah J. Magnier, as well as Team RogueMoney’s very own W the Intelligence Insider. The Russian Analyst’s friend Andrei Raevsky aka The Saker has also warned his readers in recent interviews with The Solari Report’s Catherine Austin Fitts and in posts at his own Vineyard of the Saker website that Israel may be a planning a major military campaign against Hezbollah in the near future.

The Link Between the Wars Waged for the Mideast and the Deep State’s War on Trump

Given the tensions in the Trump Administration between realists, pro-Israel ‘Bannon-ist’ or ‘Breitbart-ian’ nationalists, and numerous leaking globalist infiltrators and Obama National Security Council holdovers, the issues of battles fought in the Levant and the war of leaks roiling Washington cannot be separated. As W the Intelligence Insider has affirmed in a lengthy telephone conversation with the Russian Analyst, Trump needs the support of the powerful Israel/Saudi Lobbies to beat back the Democratic deep state’s fraudulent ‘#TrumpRussia’ Narrative -- including through exposure of the corrupt Obama Administration appointees like John Brennan, James Comey and Jim Clapper who pushed it.

Early indicators, including the red carpet treatment Trump received after Air Force One’s transit through Saudi Arabia to Israel, are that the President is going to get some hidden support in the fight for his political if not physical life soon. However, given the integral role the Saudi Kingdom played in the spectacular rise of ISIS, one should not expect too much to be revealed in terms of ‘Riyadh John ibn Saud’ Brennan’s rumored status as a Saudi intelligence asset, nor whether the CIA under his directorship consistently and deliberately sent TOW missiles to ‘moderate rebel’ cutouts for Al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate.

Instead, the most likely attacks on the #TrumpRussia ns! scam will come in the form of further revelations of illegal spying on prominent Americans (including the Trump campaign) ordered by the previous Administration if not from the top, as well as additional evidence that Seth Rich was Wikileaks’ source of the so-called ‘Russian GRU/FSB hacked’ Democratic National Committee emails. As of this writing we expect more #SethRich revelations soon that legacy media will furiously denounce as conspiracy theorizing in an effort to intimidate Fox or San Diego-based pro-Trump outlet One American News (OAN) from covering.

The Likely Timing of an Israel-Hezbollah War if It Happens in Autumn 2017

Unfortunately, as W has also indicated in our phone conversation, support from what Professors John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt called ‘the Lobby’ for Trump’s coordinated pushback against the false charge that he’s a Siberian candidate puppet of Putin will come with strings attached. And those strings will include staunch Trump Administration support for Israel’s fierce and pre-planned response to a Hezbollah provocation or false flag to be blamed on the Lebanon-based Shi’a militants.

What a false flag or actual Hezbollah strike scenario would look like is unclear, but the timing is not hard to guess: after the summer and early fall campaigns of the Russian and U.S.-led coalitions defeat the Islamic State at Deir Ez Zor and Raqqa. Historically, Israel has gone to war on or shortly after Jewish high holidays, so the late September window between Rosh Hashanah (1 Tishrei 5778 - 9/21 or 3x3 and 7x3) and Yom Kippur (10 Tishrei - 9/30) is prime time for some sort of Hezbollah-related outrage, not necessarily the full scale war, to start. The rainy late October into November weather in the Lebanese mountains where Hezbollah’s tunnel strongholds are located -- with low clouds and mist potentially interfering with drone and infra-red sensors deployed from the air -- leaves a relatively short time frame for a major aerial and limited ground offensive on the part of the IAF/IDF.

Civilian Death Toll from American Strikes Rising as U.S. Backed Kurds Nearly Encircle Raqqa

As we wrote above, U.S.-backed SDF forces, consisting of Kurdish YPG militia with some smattering of local Arab tribes, are pressing their attack on the capitol of ISIS so-called Caliphate in Raqqa. The SDF received significant U.S. air support with strikes called in by American special forces that allowed some of the elite Kurdish troops to reportedly advance into the northern outskirts of the city.

However there were reports from the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (actually one Syria emigre working out of his home in Coventry, England) that 18 civilians had died from U.S. coalition bombs or missiles in villages near the city. Syrian state media put the death toll higher, at 20 civilians killed by American strikes.

Although the SOHR is not nearly as credible a source as mainstream particularly British media have presented it for the last several years, the admission that US/Coalition bombs are now claiming more Syrian lives than those of Damascus and its Russian supporters is psychologically significant. As is the recent visit by a New York Times reporter to east Aleppo where he discovered to his surprise, many locals describing the government’s successful Russian-backed offensive as a liberation while cursing the locust-like ‘moderate rebels’. Those same ‘rebels’ whose struggle had been portrayed by U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and the Atlanticist/globalist press as  noble. What emerged from eyewitness accounts instead of freedom fighers were kidnappers for ransom, child bride brokers/sex traffickers, jihadist fanatics and thieves who literally ripped the wiring out of buildings in order to sell the copper to the Turks. The jihadists also, contrary to the ‘last hospital in Aleppo was hit twenty bazillion times’ agitprop of the media and their Al-Qaeda linked sources, routinely placed large arms caches and headquarters in schools and hospitals so that these structures would get hit.

In response to Damascus’ and international complaints about the deadly strikes, U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis stated that civilian casualties are inevitable if Raqqa and other urban areas are to be freed from the Islamic State’s grip. While Mattis statement is factually correct, it also exposes the U.S. longstanding position that Russian Aerospace and Syrian Air Forces engage in indiscriminate if not deliberate bombing of civilians to charges of hypocrisy, particularly now that American bombs appear to be killing more Syrian citizens than the Moscow-Damascus alliance.

Russian Support Proving Integral to the SAA’s Most Successful Anti-ISIS Offensive Yet

By maintaining the pressure on Raqqa, the Trump White House, contrary to the unofficial ‘go slow against Daesh’ policy of the Obama Administration, is preventing ISIS from shifting large numbers of jihadists to counterattacks against Syrian government forces. The evidence of this is found in footage released by the Syrian and Russian Defense Ministries, showing warplanes demolishing a large ISIS convoy rolling south along the highway Daesh still controls out of Raqqa.

Scores of vehicles were destroyed or left abandoned in the desert by the Daeshbags, with dozens of terrorists killed. So much for the failed tactic of ‘funneling’ ISIS towards fighting ‘the Assad regime’.

As the terrorists found out the hard way, the days of Daesh being able to count on U.S. airpower to stand down while it attacks ‘Syrian regime’ forces as in 2015-16, or for the Americans and Russians not to share drone and ground radar intel on any larger than platoon sized movement of terrorists, are long over. Consequently, with Daesh manpower spread more thin than ever, the terror army no longer can mount effective counterattacks against an unstoppable Syrian Arab Army blitz linking up multiple fronts.

Most importantly, this is the largest offensive by the SAA and its Hezbollah/Iraqi allies against Daesh since the terror group’s inception in 2013-14, demonstrating (thanks to Russia and Iran) a qualitative improvement in the Syrians combat capabilities. As we wrote in the previous Syraq SITREP, the Tiger forces are now advancing southeast through the Aleppo province countryside, while the Russian trained and advised Fifth Assault Corps (profiled by Southfront here) is rolling east from Palmyra to the town of Arak, a key way station before the ISIS siege of Deir Ez Zor can be lifted. Ultimately, the objectives are not just strategic -- securing an overland route to Iraqi Shi’a reinforcements, which in northern Syraq must pass through U.S.-dominated Kurdish territory to reach Damascus’ friendlies -- but economic. Moon of Alabama explains the value of the Syraq-Jordan highway 1/40 and its importance to future oil and gas extraction in the eastern Syrian and western Iraqi desert well:

Highway 1 and its branch to Damascus is the most important economic lifeline between Syria and Jordan in the west and Iraq and beyond in the east. Whoever controls it, controls major parts of commerce between those countries. Iraq is a country with rich resources. While it is under economic strains after decades of U.S. sanctions and war against it by the U.S. and Takfiri proxy forces it has no long-term need to rent out such major real estate.

Nevertheless the current Iraqi government under Prime Minister al-Abadi signed a preliminary agreement for a 25 year contract with the U.S. company:

Mr. Abadi has awarded the development project to Olive Group, although the final details are still being worked out. The project would include repairing bridges in western Anbar Province; refurbishing the road, known as Highway 1; and building service stations, rest areas and roadside cafes. It would also include mobile security by private contractors for convoys traveling the highway. [emphasis in the original cited text - JWS]

Al Abeidi is now under pressure from the Shia majority who elected him into office to renounce the deal. It is obviously that the deal is not in their interest nor that of the country. According to U.S. diplomats one purpose of the deal is pushing back on the influence of Shiite Iran, whose growing power in Iraq has alarmed important Sunni allies of the United States like Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Iran has little to do with the road. It is the Shia majority of Iraq that would benefit most from free flowing traffic and commerce on it.

Turkey and Saudi Arabia have enabled the Sunni insurgency in Iraq of which ISIS is just the latest incarnation. To allow the U.S. to control the road and thereby Anbar province in the name of Turkey and Saudi Arabia would guarantee that future Sunni insurgencies could threaten Baghdad whenever "needed". Just remember how Obama said he used ISIS to throw then Prime Minster Maliki out of office.

The reason, the president added, “that we did not just start taking a bunch of airstrikes all across Iraq as soon as ISIL came in was because that would have taken the pressure off of [Prime Minister Nuri Kamal] al-Maliki.

A U.S. controlled west-Iraq and south-eastern Syria would be a highway for Saudi Arabian miscreants from their country up towards Baghdad and Damascus. It would be an incarnation of the "Salafist principality" the U.S. and other early ISIS supporters have wished for since at least 2012.   

All of these advances, it has now been confirmed, are being aided by the direct presence of Russian advisers and spetsnaz forward air controllers. What has not been confirmed but widely reported on pro-Damascus Twitter accounts like user ‘Ivan Sidorenko’s is whether Russian SU-35 fighter jets have actually flown sorties near the U.S. controlled border strip around Al-Tanf, warning the Americans against striking the SAA or its allies again. The U.S. dropped leaflets on Syrian troops warning them to stop liberating more of their country’s soil from ISIS lest the Americans no longer have any plausible excuse to hang around al-Tanf. The Syrians’ response was to send one of their best equipped, Russian advised units close to the area where the Americans are warning them not to advance.

It remains to be seen how the SAA and their Russian advisers will choose to respond, but there are preliminary, unconfirmed reports from Iran’s FARS News Agency that some American, British and presumably Norwegian special forces are bugging out to Jordan, as it becomes obvious their ‘moderate rebel’ proxies are badly outnumbered and outgunned by the Russian-backed Syrians.

In other words, as retired U.S. Army/DIA Colonel Pat Lang writes, the neocons and ‘Salafist principality’ builders’ weak hands are being exposed:

“The Arabic-language al-Hadath news quoted field sources as saying that the US and Britain have evacuated half of their forces that were deployed in Syria's al-Tanf border region, relocating them to Jordan.

In the meantime, social networks affiliated to the Syrian Army reported that the US and British forces that are backing the terrorists of Aswad al-Sharqiyeh and Jeish al-Thowreh have left their bases in the two regions of Hamimeh and Sukri in Eastern Homs. The sources said that the US forces retreated via al-Tanf border-crossing towards Iraq and the British forces left al-Tanf for Jordan. The sources also said that the entire patrolling groups of the US and British forces have left the border lines.

Arab media outlets said on Tuesday that the Russian armored units entered regions along the Syria-Jordan border to fortify the Syrian Army's border posts and positions and seal the borderline.”  (FARS News Agency)