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09 December 2015

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LG

SST is on a roll today.

Many thanks, PL, PB and FBA

johnf

"SST is on a roll today."

Seconded

Farmer Don

So are you saying, The fighters are getting bused out alive for now. They will be dropped off in an area that will be attacked in the future, and there they will either be killed or captured?

This is twice I've read fighters are give a lift to fight again. Is there no choice because of the civilians they are in the midst of?

turcopolier

Farmer Don

How are those Ukrainians and Coywolves these days? Must be cold up there. in the 60s here. It's the US pet jihadis who are being bussed out. the unicorn FSA types have decided the government isn't so bad after all. Yes, it's the desire not to kill more civilians than necessary that is the governing factor in this. pl

no one

Sir, I am stilled concerned about US troops/operators getting involved with these pet jihadis and being accidently hit by a Russian attack on the jihadis.

I cam imagine such an incident being Borg-spun into a case for war with Russia (or some similar insanity).

Valissa

"It's the US pet jihadis who are being bussed out."

PL, then is this type of arrangement part of a deconfliction arrangement with the US, and do you think this pattern be repeated in other towns/cities?

Also... what happens to the morale of the fighters who are bussed to safety to fight another day? I would expect it would be demoralizing, but it could just as well piss them off and reinspire them.

It seems like a savvy move by Russia to do this, in terms of setting their reputation in the area and not creating extra enemies. But I lack any military background so would appreciate your insights.

VietnamVet

Colonel,

I agree SST is on a roll.

With VP Joe Biden visiting Kiev to stiffen spines for the coming winter, the next months will see if Russia can force a peace settlement on the West. Or, will the regional Sunni Shiite holy war escalate when the northern gap is closed cutting off supplies to moderate jihadists and ISIS. All indications are that the American plan to cleanse Vladimir Putin out the Kremlin is still on. Turkey’s actions point out its continued support of Turkmen and their fellow Sunnis. If Turkey invades Syria to reopen the supply lines, the world will be in a very hot shooting war between NATO and Russia.

ISL

Dear Colonel, PB, and all,

IMO, SST has been invaluable to provide understanding of the effect of Russia developing modern war fighting strategies. ignoring the Borg - media, even may normally less infantile sites have been missing most of the details. moreover, committee members often provide links to those sites. Thanks

Valissa

Ashton Carter opens door to U.S. ground support for Iraqi forces in Ramadi http://www.cnn.com/2015/12/09/politics/ash-carter-isis-strategy/

Carter has opened the door, but apparently not enough to appease that deranged dynamic duo of McCain & Graham.

No shortage of cartoons on these two clowns….
http://rackjite.com/wp-content/uploads/mccainclown.jpg
http://media.cagle.com/83/2013/09/16/137523_600.jpg
http://pavlovianobeisance.com/images/mccain_graham.jpg
http://bit.ly/1QfNZTc

ex-PFC Chuck

SST rolls every day when things are happening.

confusedponderer

With jihadis, irrespective whether they belong to the pet or rabid variety, one doesn't need the Russians for mischief.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camp_Chapman_attack

charly

It is a good choice. Many of those fighters will decide that the grass is greener in Turkey/Germany from above than in Syria from below and they change from local fighters to external fighters. External fighters are more likely to have quality issues.

Nightsticker

Sitting on the beach in Florida
for 6 weeks. Check in daily for
for PB, PL, FB, et al.
Go R-6!

confusedponderer

charley,
"External fighters are more likely to have quality issues."

Are they?

Why then is Turkey bringing in central asians and chechens? By all accounts, they seem to be doing rather well, in fact better than the locals, perhaps because they aren't bonded to the place they shoot up, have no emotional or family connection to the folks they impose Sharia on, and because they have few places to go back to.

Laguerre

We should be realistic. The Syrian army is largely tired out, after four years of war. Unwilling to press home attacks unless bombed in, certainly not in urban situations.

That's not what I think would be best for Syria. In my view peace in Syria can only be obtained by a multi-cultural government, and only Asad is offering that.

However it has to be said that among the Syrians that I know, mostly expatriate rather than exile, including an Alawite (the rest remain silent), there's not much enthusiasm for Asad.

turcopolier

Laguerre

I AM realistic. Armies require fire support for success. What is your point? The age of Austerlitz has passed. Oh, wait, Bonaparte liked fire support. pl

Valissa

"there's not much enthusiasm for Asad"

So what? As in the US... not much enthusiasm for our presidents (except for the extreme partisans in the MSM, and the hard core tribal loyalists) for some years now. The current presidential campaign has less public enthusiasm than I've ever seen.

Likewise, I think most people in most countries tolerate their leadership at best. It is human nature to grumble about one's leaders and be dissatisfied with their decisions.

robt willmann

A little off topic, but this just in...two additional significant developments.

1. Iraq is talking about canceling the "Strategic Framework Agreement for a Relationship of Friendship and Cooperation between the United States of America and the Republic of Iraq", so says this article--

http://sputniknews.com/world/20151209/1031467186/iraq-us-security-cancellation.html

The agreement, signed on November 17, 2008 by the sometimes dour Ryan Crocker, for the Bush jr. administration, is here--

http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/122076.pdf

Signed the same day by Crocker was the "Agreement Between the United States of America and the Republic of Iraq On the Withdrawal of United States Forces from Iraq and the Organization of Their Activities during Their Temporary Presence in Iraq". Quite a while back, I think I linked to it and may have mentioned some of the soft language in it--

http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/122074.pdf

Once the "relationship of friendship and cooperation" is no longer in effect, not only will U.S. troops and mercenaries (I mean, private contractors) no longer be welcome, but the status of all U.S. affiliated persons may be changed to zero. This means that as far as fighting ISIS and dealing with other problems are concerned, Iraq will look to others for help, which will in turn mean Russia and, even more, Iran, both appearing in a "kinetic" capacity.

2. The International Monkey Business Fund, less accurately known as the International Monetary Fund (IMF), apparently is changing its policy that it will not lend "money" to countries that are in arrears on debt payments to certain entities; this involves, as you might expect, Ukraine. Even though Ukraine still is in complete arrears on the money it owes Russia, the IMF is going to lend more money to the thieves and U.S. puppet government in Ukraine. The economist Michael Hudson refers to a message from the IMF of yesterday--

http://thesaker.is/the-imf-forgives-ukraines-loan-to-russia/

At its 3 December 2015 press conference, the IMF spokesman mentioned its "policy of non-tolerance of arrears", which involves a couple of meetings of the Board: "On the lending into arrears policy, we talked about this two weeks ago when I was here. I mentioned this two step process, the informal Board meeting, to be followed by a formal Board meeting on the Fund's policy of non-toleration of arrears to official bilateral creditors."--

http://www.imf.org/external/np/tr/2015/tr120315.htm

But now not only will the IMF tolerate non-payment by a country and still lend it money, but Professor Hudson theorizes that this will be limited to countries that are dealing in U.S. dollars. If true, this is a further act of desperation to try to keep the dollar as the reserve currency of banks around the world. However, it may be as short-sighted as Turkey's shooting down of the Russian jet. The IMF's new position will likely have the effect of driving Russia, China, and other countries to work even harder to set up their own SWIFT-type computer system of routing bank orders, and to start buying more oil and gas using money other than dollars, and to use other currencies to settle trade transactions.

Haralambos

All:
Frightening: https://consortiumnews.com/2015/12/08/cruz-threatens-to-nuke-isis-targets/

This is up on Greek TV tonight and here: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3353095/Putin-threatens-NUCLEAR-ISIS-Russian-leader-says-new-cruise-missiles-equipped-warheads-hopes-never-need-them.html I am always skeptical about the Daily Mail, but the Greek TV showed his comments tonight, albeit with subtitles and dubbing I believe.

Putin looks like the only adult in this situation.

Laguerre

Dear Colonel

I am not against your point of view. Just, in order to be realistic, we have to ask, does the Syrian army any longer have the power to push through a victory. My Alawite student was negative. Only the Alawites are still fighting. The druze have deserted (but did they ever fight?). I didn't necessarily believe him.

The question should be posed. How much of the Syrian army is still composed of what, and what are they capable of? I haven't seen recent assessments.

turcopolier

Laguerre

One possibility is that you have not been reading here. R+6 means Russians+Syrian Army+Hizbullah+IRGC+Christian militia+Shia militia+Palestinian militia. the other possibility is that you are committed to the destruction of the Syrian government. pl

FB Ali

An army does get "tired out" and demoralised when it undergoes defeat after defeat, and sees the whole world seemingly lining up against them.

But a strong backer with lots of fire support potential, and a few victories and advances can do wonders for morale and fighting spirit.

The Syrian Army was largely composed of Sunnis, with the Alawis concentrated in a few elite formations. It was the latter who were doing most of the fighting (and dying), while the former were used mainly as garrison troops, and not showing much enthusiasm for getting killed. With the Russian (and Iranian and Hizbullah) intervention, and the battlefield successes it has led to, the Sunni portions of the Army are coming back into play. The Russians are encouraging that.

The Syrian Army is no longer "tired out".

Babak Makkinejad

This argument is actually quite equally applicable to the other side of the Civil War; which does not enjoy living under a functioning government with all its rights and privileges.

I expect the rebels among Syrian population to in the Western part of the country to basically give up for sheer hopeless exhaustion within the next 2 years, if not earlier.

They are not living under any kind of order - civil or military but are ruled by various armed formations.

Babak Makkinejad

Druze tried to remain neutral until Jihadists massacred one of their villages; that was when Druze in Israel attacked this ambulance carrying wounded Jihadists and lynched two.

Shia are fighting, Kurds are fighting, Sunnis are fighting, Iranians are fighting.

I do not think there will be a collapse of SAR - especially after the Russian intervention.

turcopolier

Laguerre

If you consult the Chapter in "On War" entitled "The Military Virtue of an Army" you will read of what FB Ali speaks. You are in Estonia and have an Alawi student? pl

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