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01 June 2016


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Good summary. But in terms of federalization, I have to go with Babak's conclusion--most likely impossible.

Babak Makkinejad

Nah, almost all the protagonists and antagonists of World War I were representative systems of government. In particular and in my opinion, to this day, the Hapsburg achievement embodied in the Austro-Hungarian Empire has not be recaptured since its demise in 1918.

I would not even dignify WWI as an ideological struggle - there was nothing that you could even remotely construe as being ideological grounds for war - unlike the "Abolitionists" and "States Rights" partisan in the American Civil War.

It was almost like that they liked to go to war for fun and excitement.


Found this at The Saker but I think it deserves a read, Lavrov diplomatic skills are amazing, even more so when adressing Russian public:


Yes that was the bridge I referenced. I find only 6 or so looking carefully out to Al Jaboul Lake. While the barrier wouldn't be absolute it need only stop semi-trucks with diesel fuel trailer loads to have a devastating impact on IS financially. I think its their only route to NW Syria given the change in front lines.



Actually, IMO a continuous line would not be necessary or even desirable. A series of defended positions well dug in and with adequate fire support. Extensive barrier mine fields around these positions to canalize and hold truck movement in beaten zones would IMO be the way to go. pl


Also the Turkish-Syrian border zone (safe zone) is being defined by the kilometer reach of Turkish artillery at about 25 km. I'm guessing. Today Cavusoglu complained that the US has been slow in delivering to Turkey HIMARS missiles which would of course increase that range. Things get delayed in shipping all the time especially when Turkey can confuse Kurdish positions with American SFs for IS targets in such a confusing battlezone.



Your approach has advantages if the bridges can be used later. I'd just note that IS has a habit of blowing bridges in Iraq when they think they can't hold the ground but no history of rebuilding bridges. In this case they really need those few bridges/crossing points between Al Jaboul Lake and Lake Assad intact. Some unattended ground sensors, some artillery and mines would really make them pay a high price to keep them open. And if IS has to retreat there is going to be a lot of traffic on them or a lot of vehicles stuck in the river bottom.


Col., I've been thinking about this cat herding problem. I wonder if some well timed C130 landings with pallets of catnip and cash could rent unity of effort from the disparate militias long enough to make a difference against IS? IS has their unity through terror, but we have catnip and a lot of hungry cats.



Catnip? You have a problem with that? War needs funding. What do you want "bloody footsteps in the snow?" pl


Meanwhile in Germany


No I am totally in favor. If for a brief period we can get tens of thousands of militiamen to shoot at IS instead of each other it would be a fabulous use of money.


It's hard not to see some manner of coordination between this SDF/YPG-push across the Firat river and this action here by SAA, which is comprised of several thousand men:



Various sources report that the CAA moved along the highway Salaam-Raqqa, establishing control over the Jabal Abu Al-Zein and district Maßbach: https://twitter.com/IvanSidorenko1/status/738414965225361408 Everything east of Daishev.

2016-06-02 23:35:49"

The advantages to taking this route rather than go directly to Deir ez-Zur: For one, in the vicinity is the Tabqa air-base to be captured, as well as the southeastern end of the Assad lake and the Baath dam to be secured. Securing said lake and dam would be shorter way than the route from Palmyra to Deir ez-Zur to effectively block ISIL's movement to the northwest, and further, once Tabqa and surroundings are secure, there's the Resafa-junction in reach, which, via ash-Shola, also leads to Deir ez-Zur.

Given the size of the SAA-deployment, they appear set to make this one count. All this while the unicorns at Mare'/Azzaz keep ISIL busy and SDF/YPG put Manbij increasingly under pressure and, at least theoretically, pose a threat to Raqqa from the north.


Thanks, Babak.

Maybe I should sign with Granny Hasbara, as someone suggested here indirectly a while ago.

Whatever the religious aspect may be, this would get us into a pretty difficult religio/nationalist historical debate it feels.


unlike the "Abolitionists" and "States Rights" partisan in the American Civil War.

I am not sure. But interesting argument.

In other words you would add the Austrian empire (cum Hungary?) to your definition of (present) Diocletians, based on Charlemagne being some type of successor of Diocletianus?

Babak Makkinejad

There is no debate here; multiple sense of Justice are in conflict and, in principle, there are only 2 choices:

- Defeat (like the Apache)
- Cease-fire (like Peace of Yalta)

Debate would be meaningful if we were all part of the same Justice paradigm - but we are not and we won't be as we all stick to our identity.

Babak Makkinejad

A mosaic of intrinsically weak but autonomous ethno-linguistic and ethno-religious communities are best governed through Imperial structures if perpetual war is to be avoided.

The demise of the Great King was the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the last 2300 years, followed by the demise of the Seljuks.

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