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12 December 2016

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b

It will be over today or tomorrow.

Large amounts of ammo, food and medicine were found in the parts of the cities the Takfiris retreated from.

Their disunity and unwillingness to fight are more decisive in their defeat than logistics.

The coordinated? ISIS attack and recapture of Palmyra is nasty in a public relation sense but in the real world Aleppo is much more valuable and the priority was rightly on it.

DH

I think I pass. When my eye fell upon the Citadel, I knew to track east to find the airport.

plantman

It looks to me like the Syrian Army and Russians have done everything in their power to minimize civilian casualties. I hope that same strategy is used in Mosul.

Thirdeye

From the twitterverse it looks like organized resistance is ending if it hasn't already: mass surrenders, abandoned Jihadi IDs, negotiations being conducted through loudspeakers.....even a concession, with recriminations, from a pro-Jihadi journalist from New Yawk in Aleppo. https://twitter.com/BilalKareem

And in the rest of Aleppo it's a big street party in the pouring rain.

https://twitter.com/IvanSidorenko1

Tigermoth

Aleppo has been won (is one again)!

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/jihadists-begin-complete-withdrawal-east-aleppo/

"BEIRUT, LEBANON (10:15 P.M.) - The jihadist rebels of Fatah Halab and Jaysh Al-Fateh have accepted terms of surrender in east Aleppo after withstanding a two month long siege imposed by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and their allies.

Per the agreement put in place, the jihadist rebels and all civilians will be allowed safe passage from the east Aleppo pocket to the 'Anadan plains near Mount Simeon - no activists, civilians, or jihadists will be arrested.

This agreement was put in place after the jihadist rebels retreated from the strategic Sheikh Sa'eed District, which was considered one of the last strongholds for Jaysh Al-Fateh and their allies.

While the proposal has been accepted by all sides, the Syrian Arab Army has yet to enter any of these neighborhoods; this is due to the fact that many jihadists have not yet left the area.

Once the pocket is officially cleared, the Syrian Armed Forces will be able to concentrate their ground units to the southern Aleppo countryside, where Hezbollah is awaiting to launch an offensive along the Aleppo-Idlib Highway."

Henshaw

Remarkable progress indeed. Hopelessness of jihadis' position finally speaking more persuasively than the promises of their imams.

re Palmyra- is there significance in the fact that Daesh directed their additional resources at Palmyra rather than Deir Ezzor?

turcopolier

tigermoth

Good news. The job for the government now is to get life back to normal in all of Aleppo. pl

Dmcna

What a victory. Defying the expectations set by the faltering steps to encirclement of east Aleppo the campaign since has been steady and assured and startlingly successful. Contrary to the shrill lies of opposition supporters it has been achieved carefully with a small number of civilian casualties. The government has kept the moral high ground by its repeated ceasefires and its generous amnesty to local fighters. It seems vindicated by what the civilians leaving east Aleppo say. Its swiftness to get things back to normal in places like Hanano exudes confidence and authority.

ex-PFC Chuck

Here's a link to an awesome video independent Canadian journalist Eve Bartlett at a press conference at the UN in which she debunks the MSM coverage of the Aleppo siege and combat. Her evisceration of a smug Norwegian MSL reporter during the Q & A is delicious. About 18 minutes long.
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=TjHniRRgOao

Lemur

Looks like Turkey is going to take Al Bab. Should we put stock in the rumours Turkey has been given a free hand to go to Raqqa?

Pundita

BREAKTHROUGH -- The nightmare is finally coming to an end.
(The photo at SANA of Assad reading the letter from the Pope and the Cardinal watching him read it is priceless.)


President al-Assad receives letter from Pope Francis expressing heartfelt sympathy with Syria
December 12, 2016
SANA

http://sana.sy/en/?p=95936

Damascus, SANA – President Bashar al-Assad received a letter from Pope Francis delivered by Apostolic Nuncio to Syria, Cardinal Mario Zenari, who was received by the President on Monday.

Pope Francis expressed his heartfelt sympathy for Syria and its people in light of the difficult circumstances the country is going through, and asserted the Vatican’s condemnation of all forms of extremism and terrorism.

The Pope called in his letter for uniting all efforts to put an end to the war in Syria and restore peace in it so that it can remain a model for coexistence among cultures and religions as it always has been.

For his part, President al-Assad congratulated Zenari on being ordained Cardinal, noting that keeping him as the Apostolic Nuncio to Syria after becoming Cardinal – which is the only such case in the world – is apolitical, historic, and humanitarian president that shows Pope Francis’ great care for Syria and its people.

His Excellency asserted that Syria, as a state and as a people, is determined to restore security and stability and is continuing to achieve reconciliations, as they are the optimal way for achieving that goal.

For his part, Cardinal Zenari said he is glad to remain as Apostolic Nuncio to Syria after being ordained Cardinal, stressing that Syria, the cradle of Christianity and religions, is a very important state that plays a pivotal role in the region, and it must overcome the ordeal it is going through and become better than it was before.

R. Milhem / Hazem Sabbagh

[END REPORT]

Babak Makkinejad

It was about time he said something.

Twice ayatollahs in Qum wrote to him, seeking cooperation.

I guess he was fence-sitting until now.

Pundita

Yes. A cynic might say that Italian businessmen helped push him off the fence when they saw the reconstruction phase in Syria was nearing. But
Assad gave an interesting interview last week with a Syrian newspaper in which he made a statement that's become a theme for him about what he calls the 'new' Syria; his words wouldn't be lost on officials in all major religions:

BEGIN QUOTE

In an interview with Syrian newspaper al-Watan, President al-Assad said that the social structure of the Syrian society has become purer, because things have become clearer, and now society distinguishes between religion and fanaticism, between religion and sectarianism, and society realized that it is in its best interest that everyone accept everyone else and that everyone respect all the different religious, sectarian, ethnic parts of the spectrum in the Syrian society, because it’s the only way that Syria can exist.

END QUOTE

Here's the link to the interview:

http://sana.sy/en/?p=95555

Pundita

Here is the complete text of the letter:

(Vatican Radio)
[...]

A communiqué from the Holy See Press Office released on Monday read as follows:

"In naming Archbishop Mario Zenari to the College of Cardinals, the Holy Father sought to show a particular sign of affection for the beloved Syrian people, so sorely tried in recent years.

"In a letter sent through the new Cardinal, Pope Francis expressed again his appeal to President Bashar al-Assad and to the international community for an end to the violence, and the peaceful resolution of hostilities, condemning all forms of extremism and terrorism from whatever quarter they may come, and appealing to the President to ensure that international humanitarian law is fully respected with regard to the protection of the civilians and access to humanitarian aid."

[END]

http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2016/12/12/pope_francis_sends_letter_to_syrian_president_assad/1278559

Babak Makkinejad

Clearly, even the Vatican had to, outwardly at least, conform to the Fortress West script on Syria.

Italian business men have no power, just as Italy has no power in the Fortress West.

The Beaver

Colonel,

Both Elijah Magnier and Hassan Ridha on Twitter: "Battle of Halab is over".

Russia negotiated on behalf of Damascus and Turkey on behalf of AQ, Takfiris and Rebels

Thirdeye

It will be interesting to see if this stance towards Syria is a sign that Pope Francis is moving the Vatican away from being the lapdog of the Western power establishment that it became under Pope John Paul.

In other news, the Jihadists are being evacuated to Idlib per ceasefire agreement, amid protests from Aleppo residents who want them brought to justice.

https://twitter.com/maytham956

Thirdeye

"Intense battles broke out this morning between government troops and rebels forces in the insurgent-held districts of Aleppo as an evacuation deal agreed on earlier collapsed.

According to a military source, rebel fighters holed up in Salaheddine and Sayf Al-Dawla districts violated the agreement with the Syrian authorities and attacked army troops, before their offensive was repelled by government forces.

Meanwhile, rebel rocket shelling on government-held districts in the city's west killed at least 6 civilians and wounded scores others...."

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/fighting-aleppo-resumes-evacuation-agreement-falters/

Sayf Al-Dawla is the northernmost portion of the pocket west of the river. Salaheddine is due south of the Citadel, across a major east-west road from Al-Qasiliah. It was the source of indiscriminate rocket attacks.

http://militarymaps.info/

There are also reports shooting between Ahrar AlSham and AlNusra in Al-Mashhad, south of Sayf Al-Dawla, after AlNusra targeted civilian escapees, and more recently a failed VBIED attack approaching one of the bridges.

https://twitter.com/maytham956

Chaos and more orders for 72 virgins in the Sayf Al-Dawla - Al-Mashhad pocket. Yesterday, escapees were literally wading across streets.

Thirdeye

Fifteen men sprung from an abandoned Sharia prison in east Aleppo.

https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/syrian-army-discovers-possible-rebel-torture-center-east-aleppo/

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