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10 October 2014


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Request for TC Input

Regarding Aleppo, given is: "More and more IS fighters have returned to the Aleppo area for the purpose of trying to stop the Syrian Army's finalization of the encirclement of the old city"

As real life situation currently appears to look like this:


it's not clear to me where IS will be in the Aleppo area by Nov 5, how did they go there, and who are their allies there and where are the IS lines of communication.

Could TC give further explanation of where exactly IS are located in "the Aleppo area" by Nov 5, how did they get there and where, if any, IS ammo supply etc from these IS in the Aleppo area are going to their main forward bases in Raqqa etc?

Did IS by Nov 5 go back into Aleppo city? If so, how? Have rebels north of Aleppo - eg FSA/IF Tawheed, who hold the relevant ground to go into rebel held Aleppo city parts - joined IS? Or did IS battle the FSA/IF Tawheed in front of he Syrian army positions to gain that ground? If so, how has the Syrian army reacted? Or did IS smash through Syrian army held territory east of Aleppo? Or shall in "the Aleppo area" just mean, that IS by Nov 5 attacks Syrian army positions east of Aleppo from outside of the Syrian army's ring around Aleppo?

I have find it hard to see any way IS can return to the Aleppo area for the purpose of trying to stop the Syrian Army's finalization of the encirclement of the old city by Nov 5 other than by the means of deus ex machina. Could TC elaborate further on this?



Movement is by infiltration in small groups. Ludendorff and Giap would have approved. pl


The French quickly run out of money, as they did in Mali. They ask for financing from the international community, but little is forthcoming. Rather than stop the air missions, Hollande asks for big budget cuts. This stokes huge protests across France, threatening Hollande's ability to finish his term.

Since their was no "October Surprise" attack on Azraq or King Playstation, an attack does occur in early November. No one of any significance gets hurt. No one claims responsibility, fueling suspicion that Israel and/or the US had staged a "false flag" attack to convince the Saudi royal family that their lives are in danger and the American public of the seriousness of the ISIS threat. In response, the Saudi Air Force bombs Houthi positions in Sanaa, Yemen. (Go figure!) Iraqi refugees in Syria are placed under suspicion, rounded up and put into camps.

Ebola cases begin to appear among West African emigrant populations in Morocco, Tunisia, Libya and Istanbul. A few emmigrants make it to Spain and Italy and bring Ebola with them, fueling anti-immigrant anger and threatening cross-Medirranean commerce. The cases in Istanbul, an unusual immigrant destination, fuel speculation about whether they were "plants," designed to distract Erdogan from problems in Iraq and Syria. Tourism, a major source of Turkish income, totally dries up, bringing the country close to bankruptcy.

Conflict in Lebanon heats up. The press is reluctant to call it civil war, but Tripoli, South Beirut, and the Bekaa become separate enclaves with the Lebanese military afraid to intervene to assert government authority.

The election past, Obama announces an agreement with Iran over the nuclear issue. This paves the way for increased trade and investment by the EU in Iran, stronger diplomatic ties, and a more overt cooperation in dealing with ISIS.


Baghdad Front:

An eerie calm descends over the city as the fighting over the next month seems focused more in Syria and the Kurdish areas as ISIS looks to consolidate control. That clam is shattered, however on Thanksgiving when ISIS and Shiite sympathizers launch a series of suicide attacks in the city, targeting the Green Zone and other spots like hotels where Westerners frequent. Although most of those against the military sites and governmental buildings are thwarted, some get through due to the lowering of defenses for the holiday and insider help. 47 people perish when the main hotel is bombed with another 100+ wounded.

At the same time, ISIS launches a wave of attacks against BIA and the airport comes under heavy artillery files, preventing reinforcements from being flown in. The US military has no choice but to redirect the air campaign in a desperate last ditch effort to keep it from being overwhelmed, but after fighting for a couple of days, Iraqi army troops fall apart and abandon the airport.

Obama is forced to committed a brigade of troops in early December to keep the land route open for evacuation to Kuwait, resisting calls from Republicans to send in a massive force to try and reoccupy the country. A deal is cut with Iran to keep Shia militias at bay while the evacuation occurs.

Although the right call, Obama's legacy is tarnished by the images evoking Saigon '75 and as the President who lost Iraq.


On the terrorism front-

The winter of 2014/15 sees the first biological warfare suicide attacks, as Islamist suicide squads deliberately expose themselves with ebola in Nigeria, and travel through Spain on easily falsified documents. From there they travel throughout the European rail system in an effort that infect as many as possible in as many countries as possible. Infections are actually relatively low considering the intent, and contained by a vigorous and very cooperative response by WHO and national health organizations. Although the resulting casualties number no more than a few dozen out of nearly a hundred infected, the impact on the European and global economy and the impact on societal views of security and freedom to travel are on the same order of magnitude as 9/11.

The Twisted Genius

Request for TC input.

CENTCOM, JSOC and the IC jointly request Presidential authority to provide covert military support to the PKK and YPG to ensure these forces are armed and supplied to continue operations against IS. Support will include SF trainers/advisors. Implementation of this plan will not be acknowledged.

Risk vs. gain: Both Turkey and Iraq would strenuously object to any direct support to either the PKK or YPG. Acknowledgement or revelation of our support to these groups could stop any Turkish support to the fight against IS. However, the PKK and YPG forces have proved to be the most motivated and competent fighters against IS. They have also proved they can work with the Peshmerga and the FSA. The addition of better equipped and supported PKK and YPG units fighting the Is on their northern flank would outweigh the loss of Turkey’s rather halfhearted and ineffective support.


Russian naval build up in the Mediterranean & Caspian,
aircraft carrier & nuclear sub. U.S. also has naval build up in proximity. Situation is high alert.

Bagdad under sporadic ISIS attacks being defended primarily by Iranian ground forces. Bagdad airport severely damaged.
ISIS spies have been executed.

Ebola epidemic continues. Moderate Tunisians hold their own against Salifes, although it is touch & go. Aleppo decimated by Syrian army. Damascus hit by suicide attacks.

Obama's 5,000 "Free Syrian Army" completes training in S.A.
Russian economy in trouble, ditto U.S. England & France, Spain, Greece.


US Political Front:
President Obama is further retreating in to his bubble. He does not want to get seriously involved in another middle eastern war (for what ever reason. Whether there is a actual need or not). US government actions are largely symbolic. Obama refuses to allow US air campaign to expand significantly.

Population is largely distracted over Ebola with new cases is US and Europe (However it has not gone to the level of a pandemic). There are large number Ebola cases in Nigeria and it has now spread to India (though Liberia and Nigeria).

Kobane front no longer exists as of March. ISIS has fully captured it, has carried out the executions and now a part of ISIS territory.

In the Aleppo front the SAA (Syrian army) has fully encircled the city and is laying siege to it. So far opposition attempts to break the siege has resulted in failure. SAA has not tried to take the city and is hoping to play the Homs scenario in Aleppo.

US aid the KAR has incresed significantly and the Kurds have successfully repulsed several incursions by the ISIS. Kurds are now on the offensive to re-take some of the Kurdish "territory" lost to ISIS in Iraq (with US support).

BIA is no longer doing to role of a civilian air port. Flights have ceased and artillery attacks are not uncommon. There seems to be a strong presence of ISIS spotters.

Large ISIS attacks has captured significant amounts of Iraqi military hardware and prisoners. ISIS is using some Iraqi prisoners as slaves for their military activities (maintenance of equipment). ISIS has still not made its move in to Baghdad but is moving in to towns in south of baghdad (quietly encircling the city). Iraqi government is secretly considering shifting its location (like in Libya) in the near future.

Terrorist Front
More and more public demonstration of support of ISIS in Jordan while the number of attacks inside Jordan is increasing.

First ever suicide bombing (after years) inside Saudi Arabia has occurred targeting foreigners (Christians) and a member of the saudi royal family who has resided in europe for years.


Terrorist Front
Reacting to ISIS assault on Kobani, street riots erupted in Celle, Hamburg, Stuttgart between Kurds and Islamists in the vicinity of local losques in which participants brought iron bars, machetes and knifes. Riot police used tear gas to separate the factions.

Tensions remained, and subsequently more riots took, finally involving fatalities. An Islamist imam and a few followers were killed, a dozen Kurdish protesters, and three policemen. Scores more were wounded.

A few days later an islamist mosque in Hamburg was firebombed and an attempted attack on a Turkish consulate near Cologne failed, when molotov cocktails failed to penetrate the barred windows and burned off outside the building, causing only minor damage.

A week later Kurdish cultural center in Munich was blown up by a car bomb, killing 5, wounding 31 and causing substantial property damage to the building. An Islamist group calling itself the 'Abd-ar-Rahman brigade' claimed responsibility in a youtube video.


Diplomatic Front
Erdogan demanded in harsh terms that Germany better protect Turkish institutions. German authorities increased police presence around Turkish consulates and the embassy.

Merkel sharply criticised Erdogan, suggesting collusion between Turkey and ISIS and demanded that Turkey acts against ISIS and protects the Kurds. German politicians expressed disgust at Turkey 'exporting it's self-created domestic problems, and then making demands on the host'.

Erdogan scolded Merkel and Germany for 'arrogant meddling in Turkey's internal affairs'.

In Turkey proper, massive riots between Kurds, Islamists and Turkish security police erupted. Turkish authorities cracked down violently. Eventually a number of Kurds at Kurdish gatherings in support of the defenders and refugees of Kobane were killed in terrorist bombings.

In the following weeks it came to terrorists attacks against Islamist mosques and Turkish police stations, resulting in stronger and stronger calls on Erdogan to do something 'on the Kurdish question'.

KAR front
The Turkish army finally received orders from Erdogan to enter into Syria and northern Iraq.

They attack Kurdish areas and Kurdish forces, effectively supporting ISIS strategic goals, with ISIS and Turkish forces converging from north and ISIS from west and south, first on Irbil, then on Kirkuk and Sulaimania, in which subsequently the defenders are encircled and put under siege. The Turkish army cuts off these cities, and leaves much of the urban fighting in eliminating the pockets to ISIS.

Aleppo and Baghdad Fronts
With their back secured ISIS then concentrates on operations against Aleppo and Baghdad.


With Erdogan ordering the Turkissh armend forces to attack Kurds in northern Syria and nothern Iraq, he declares a no fly zone over these areas, attacking Syrian aircraft, and obstructing NATO flights.

Turkish air force flies attacks in effective support of ISIS.

Major tensions between Turkey and her NATO allies ensue. Tensions escalate as Turkish F16 attack a Pershmerga unit using US supplied JDAM, killing five American advisors.


Request for TC Input,

Tacit cooperation between Iran and US in support of Pesh Merga forces is effective

Please define effective. Effective at allowing Pesh Merga to maintain control over their territory, effective at US and Iranian support does not lead to US-Iran conflict, but Pesh Merga lost territory. or Pesh Merga expand their area of influence?

Second, have their been any incidents (discovery and capture by IS, tribal allegiance shifts with declarations of new loyalties?) regarding SFGA efforts to re-open contacts from the "awakening"? If any incidents, were they public?



Real world time for inputs for this turn will expire at 1600 GMT, 12 October 2014. pl


TC Control request:

USAF deploys all available JSTARS aircraft to the appropriate air bases in the Gulf, to provide C3I and better real time targeting data for use in and around Erbil and potential raids around Mosul and Anbar province. These are to be escorted by Navy EF-18G Growler aircraft to help jam ISIS communications and to guard against ISIS acquiring and using SAMs beyond MANPADS. The Growlers are based in Kuwait, having shorter legs. RC-135 Rivet Joint aircraft are also deployed to support C3I activities.

US Navy: The USS Ohio - SSGN-726 is assigned to patrol as near to the Syrian shore as possible. While not disclosed, a second SSGN is also patrolling in the Gulf. Each has 154 Tomahawk land attack missiles. The intent is the ability to launch them in a concerted wave,to degrade any concentration of ISIS equipment or logistics chains. There is no set date for their use.



TC response: "Effective" is here defined as increasing the combat power of Pesh Merga forces. Pesh Merga/US Army 1 SFGA/Quds force combination is gaining ground slowly against IS in restoring the area of previous KAR control. US and Iranian weapons and logistical deliveries are continuous. US NCA (WH) has complained to DoD of unauthorized US SF liaison with Quds force in Kurdistan. USSF suspects CIA operatives of "ratting" on them to gain turf advantage. pl



TC response: Requests are granted subject to National Command Authority permission for each SSGN strike to include targets. pl


US: Joint Chiefs demand, and are granted, 100% relief from the sequester control of spending. This, in turn, assists them in being bolder in requesting deployment of more assets to the ME. Ebola control is effective, the the CDC running an solid program of education of the medical provider community, airlines and the TSA, to provide functionality as lines of defense. These two items prevent the GOP from considering a government shutdown over provisions of the Affordable Care Act that require funding to reimburse insurance companies for losses at the exchange level.

Europe: Germany's government hangs on through the crisis over the state of their military but the Engle government is further weakened and is predicted to fall within the year. They provide no significant assistance during this time.

Iraq: With tacit help from Iran, the Peshmerga begins to be provided with a weapons suite comparable to the needs they have in fighting ISIS. There is difficulty as the weapons are not mix and match and logistic support is sketchy. The source of many of them becomes undeniable when observers note that they are Chinese origin.


TC response - CENTCOM is directed to form a Joint Unconventional Warfare Task Force (JUWTF) for CENTCOM AOR. SOCCENT will be controlling headquarters for JUWTFME. USSOC will be supporting command for JUWTFME. The JUWTF headquarters and subordinate support facilities to be located in KAR territory. JUWTF will be operated as a black (unacknowledged) activity. Personnel will be attached from US Army Special Forces Command, or JSOC. JUWTF will assume command and control of covert UW support to PKK and YPG forces to maintain their ability to defend territory and population against IS and Turkish armed forces as necessary. JUWTF will assume command and control of ongoing 1st USFGA operations with Arab tribes in Iraq with mission to form effective anti-IS forces. All JUWTF personnel in the field will be unacknowledged as US armed forces. Priority of support for this activity is directed for all major commands. pl



TC Response - Fortunately 1st USFGA Green Berets are good at teaching amalgamation of various types of weapons in a foreign force. pl


How do the infiltrators and the already present real or potential supporters meet?

Dave Schuler

TC Control request:

What's in your "diplomatic front" scenarios for any of the parties? I. e. Russia, Turkey, France.


Love the scenario, TTG. ...


"There are large number Ebola cases in Nigeria and it has now spread to India (though Liberia and Nigeria)."

From Nigeria to India. How comes?


How do they meet? I presume you mean around Aleppo. They meet as best they can. That is what the military art is all about. Some of these groups have existing contacts among them. Others do not. If they cannot "meet" then the SAR is advantaged. Sometimes you eat the bear. Sometimes the bear eats you. pl

ex-PFC Chuck

elaine: "Russian naval build up in the Mediterranean & Caspian . . "
Did you intend to mention the Black Sea instad of the Caspian? The latter is not only land-locked but, IIRC, bordered either by overt Russian allies or by countries that share their interests in this situation.


Hmm? How come Celle entered your scenario?

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