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05 December 2016


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Chris Chuba

"Finally, in a historical context, quite a number of countries have been devastated by war in the past 20 years -- from the Balkans to Africa, from the Near East to Central Asia. Effective reconstruction has been surprisingly limited, the only obvious major exception being Lebanon" - Visitor

The success of rebuilding seems to track how strong of a national identity those countries had more than anything else. If by central Asian you mean Afghanistan, we have poured hundreds of billions of $ and it is a highly fragmented country, as are the Balkans and many parts of Africa. Syria used to have a strong national identity and I suspect that it will emerge as one again, especially after purging many of their worst elements.

On a separate topic, in 6 mo's or so, it might be amusing (at least to me) to compile a list of predictions about Syria that ended up being wrong.

The Twisted Genius


The first time I saw someone stick his rifle over the wall and let fly with a full magazine was in a news report about the Marine defense of Hue. Yeah, it's crazy shit, but it happens. I've see such things many times after that. That crazy SAA bastard who jumped out in the middle of the street, hosing down the area with his PKM from the hip was at least dancing around so a sniper couldn't draw an easy bead on him. Yeah, he was crazy too, but sometimes the heat of battle can make you full of bat shit crazy, death defying courage. Think of it as an extreme version of FIDO.


Consider the possibility that he may have been playing up for the camera. To my inexperienced eye, the rest look like an efficient, well drilled team.


"Al-Qaeda commanders negotiating surrender in Aleppo, Jihadi stronghold collapsing," by Alexander Mercouris: http://theduran.com/breaking-al-qaeda-commanders-negotiating-surrender-in-aleppo-jihadi-stronghold-collapsing/


This is tremendously good work.

The Jihadis' entire eastern perimeter is gone.

approaching along the line the Colonel suggested.


But I cannot find matters related to the news item to the American flag. Did they simply get matters wrong concerning a Russian Colonel, who died and somewhat doubled it. Yes, the by now related source seems to suggest that. At least at this point in time.


Yes. Results matter.


very interesting video newly captured Aleppo old district.



Col. Lang,

Yes sir. Fertilizer is needed to regrow Syria.

William Fitzgerald

Pat Lang,

The Citadel is 38K for out of state cadets. My fourth class year cost $1400 including uniforms, which my grandparents were able to afford in 1958. A number like that (38K) puts the school out of the range for the general sort of families who sent their boys to school there. The same is true for public colleges and universities throughout the land.




I was also reading this AM that negotiations are being conducted to save operatives from the UK, Israel, SA. Ah, no. Fertilizer.



TTG, I recall your comments on whatever surfaced from Libya in this context. It reduced on my mind to guys slightly too exited to have a gun in their hands without the necessary training.

Recently I stumbled across a video on youtube, to the extend I recall, seemingly by someone wondering about waste. Lots of munitions around, maybe coupled with some type of ad-hoc training by shooting without perceivable enemies on the other side?


Ok, better link, didn't pay attention:


Sorry, strictly I should look more seriously into computer troubles, among other things. ... Windows API interface struggling once again?

Bye, bye for a while. I'll relieve the SST community, you, in other words, of babbling me for a while.


William Fitzerald

My 4th class Year at VMI cost $1500 in 1958. In state cadets pay much less that the 38K I mentioned before. A lot of these guys are on ROTC scholarships. pl

different clue

Daniel Nicolas,

It would probably require a new political party running people on that concept among others, and getting enough such people elected to begin forcing the deciders in that direction; to make that happen.

different clue


A much elevated reputation and prestige level for China is one thing the Chinagov might feel is gained. Consolidating a real permanent defeat for Islamist jihadism of the sort China feels threatened by in Chinese Turkestan might be another.

And China could pay Russia to do some of the rebuilding that Syria would want done. That would be a money-earning economy-strengthener for Russia.

And the rebuilt Syria could be built with near-zero cultural or political space for the jihadis and sympathisers to operate. Those Syrian refugees suspected of being pro-jihadi or pro-Brotherhood, either politically or even just culturally and sentimentally; might find themselves subject to Extreme Vetting before being permitted back over a border which I suspect will eventually be a very heavily electrified razor wire fence with poison tipped barbs.


I see replies to your doubts echo my own, concerning National Identity and the real cost. Your estimate is based on dollars, which is based on high GDP from high rent, high tax overheads., low productivity. The estimate is useless for Syria. Its like putting value on Palmyra's antiquities. Syria is low GDP (low overheads). and makes coast of wages and ease of rebuilding workable... especially when no one has to fund it either.
Syria can create its own money for wages - it is not in the World Central Bank scheme of things; Money for rebuilding will flow with that same purpose at the head, and that means homes through to community facilities, national infrastructure. It wont flow into bankers hands. It will be used to buy bread from farmers and building blocks from foundries and mines. Faring is diverse and man folk are involved in farming - its in the people's hands, it won't need special stimulation. In question remains imports of steel and suchlike, and also machinery, which is where aid will be useful for sustained quick recovery. Syria's infrastructure haas been repeatedly bombed, and heavy machinery stolen away to Turkey. Syria remains under a trade embargo with the West. Unless that is reversed under Trump, the West won't get a look in. Which is a shame, if only because I used to enjoy the best sesame oil in the world, from Syria.
Syrians loyal to the Assad presidential leadership in government, remain resident in London and American cities, ready to commence trade. I imagine a softening of trade sanctions will take place for them; however that won't support rebuilding in any key way. or major way. It may help cultural, to bring Syria directly in cultural exchange with citizens of the West.

My statement above now makes rebuilding sound more like hard work than hard money. That is what it is. Bear in mind the war has been hard work, even down to agricultural level, and yet Syria has kept going, in testament to its National strength in practice.


Consider the possibility, that he was drawing fire, whilst assault crews out of camera view positioned themselves. The SAA are moving in fast, and keeping the momentum.
Moreover, he doesn't have to hit them, because many are fleeing their positions when attacked, and the Syrians take that into account.

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