Thursday, July 28, 2016

Turkey Escalates Media Crackdown, Syrian-Russian Provocations Could Spark Golan Clash, Merkel Faces Backlash

Turkey Escalates Media Crackdown in Wake of Failed Coup

Two advocacy groups, NY based Committee to Protect Journalists, and DC based Freedom House, on Wednesday sounded an alarm about the arrests of more than a dozen Turkish journalists since the weekend, and the shutting down of dozens of media outlets by the Turkish government. The move was given a single, unified reasoning: all these individuals and outlets are accused of being affiliated with dissident Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen who is living in exile in Philadelphia but, according to the Edrogan government was behind the recent military coup attempt.

CPJ Europe and Central Asia program coordinator Nina Ognianova told the Voice of America: “We’re obviously extremely concerned about the developments, particularly against journalists, but this sort of behavior from the government is nothing new. For months, the Turkish authorities have gone after journalists who were critical of their policies. It’s escalated now and in the post-coup period.”
News outlets in Turkey reported on Wednesday that the Turkish government had ordered the closing of 45 newspapers, 23 radio stations, 16 TV channels and three news agencies. An Istanbul prosecutor issued detention warrants for 47 former employees and executives of Zaman, a media group accused of links to Gulen.
Freedom House official Nate Schenkkan told VOA that unofficial lists circulating on pro-government social media sites suggest at least 150 other journalists could be targeted, many of whom may have no ties to Gulen.

As the military commanders of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) issue an ultimatum to the jihadist groups located in Syria’s largest city of Aleppo to lay down arms and leave the city, Russian media points out that the operation on the liberation of the settlement would have been long over if not for the US.

Russia and the Syrian government have launched a joint large-scale humanitarian relief operation in Aleppo, establishing three corridors for civilians and one for militants wishing to lay down arms, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Thursday.

Meanwhile Russian online newspaper Vzglyad notesthat the operation on the liberation of Syria’s largest city would have been long over if not for one problem – namely the US.

On Tuesday, an unnamed source told Sputnik that the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) destroyed an al-Nusra Front command center located in the al-Zahraa neighborhood of Aleppo as Damascus-led forces were trying to take full control of the city.

“Dozens of militants inside the headquarters were killed” in the operation, the source added. An SAA tank has also managed “to cut off al-Nusra Front's supply route and destroy a heavy artillery gun that was directed at Aleppo's residential areas.”

Regardless of the intensive military actions in the area, mobile communication is working well in the city and on Wednesday many residents in the jihadist-occupied districts got text messages from the government forces which guaranteed them a safe passage through the checkpoint.

After the exit of all civilians from eastern Aleppo, the government forces will be able to launch the final clean-up of the city from jihadists and other mercenaries.

For four days since July 25, the Syrian army has been continuously firing artillery batteries - moved close to Israel’s defense lines on the Golan border - in a manner that comes dangerously close to provoking an Israeli response. This carefully orchestrated Syrian campaign goes on around the clock.

It is the first time in the six years of the Syrian war that Bashar Assad has ventured to come near to provoking Israel. But now he appears to be emboldened by his Russian ally.  

The IDF is holding its fire for the moment. But Israeli military and government leaders know that the time is near for the IDF to be forced to hit back, especially since it is becoming evident that the Syrian army’s steps ae backed by Russia.

  • The Syrian army’s 90th and 121nd battalions have been firing their artillery batteries non-stop across a 10km band along the Golan border from Hamadia, north of Quneitra, up to a point facing the Israeli village of Eyn Zivan. (See attacked map).
    This means that the Syrian army has seized the center of buffer zone between Israel and Syria and made it a firing zone.
  • This artillery fire fans out across a radius that comes a few meters short of the Israeli border and the IDF troops stationed there. It then recedes to a distance of 500 to 600 meters and sweeps across the outposts and bases of the Syrian rebel forces believed to be in touch with Israel or in receipt of Israeli medical aid.
  • The new Syrian attack appears to hold a message for Jerusalem: For six years, you supported the rebels against the Assad regime in southern Syria. That’s now over. If you continue, you will come face to face with Syrian fire.
  • Damascus is also cautioning those rebels:  For years, you fought us with Israel at your backs. But no longer. Watch us bring you under direct artillery fire, while the IDF sits on its hands.
  • On July 26, Russian media published an article revealing that Russia had delivered to the Syrian Air Force, advanced SU-24M2 front-line bombers, which is designed for attack on frontlines of battle. Israeli officials were unpleasantly taken aback by the news. Up until now, the Russians and Syrians refrained from deploying air strength in South Syria near the Israeli border. Now the Syrian air force has the means to do so.
  • DEBKAfile military sources report that the SU-24M2, following recent upgrades and modifications in Russian factories, is now capable of dropping smart bombs – ballistic bombs with a guidance system on their tails that enable them to hit targets with precision.This guidance system does not rely on US GPS satellites but rather the equivalent Russian GLONASS system which is linked to a network of 21 Russian satellites and partially encrypted for military usages.
    In addition, the SU-24M2 is equipped with a system that projects the information the pilot needs (flight details and battle details) on the plane’s windshield (head-up display) and on the pilot’s visor.
  • The Russians delivered to the Syrians two of these sophisticated airplanes this week, out of 10 that they will supply soon.
The IDF has concluded that it is only a matter of time before these planes appear in Southern Syria and so generate a new and highly combustible situation on Israel’s northern and northeastern borders.
The Russians are colluding with Damascus to inform Israel that it will no longer be allowed by either to continue backing the rebel forces in southern Syria or sustain the buffer zone which they man.
Israel may pay dear if Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman, and Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot decide to continue to abstain from hitting back at the Syrian fire which is aimed every few hours at the vicinity of IDF posts or the impending arrival of Russian bombers. The price in store would be the weakening of the IDF’s hold on the Golan border.

German chancellor Angela Merkel faces a political backlash over her open-door policy for migrants after several attacks in the country.
The four brutal killings in Germany's south, three of which were carried out by asylum-seekers, have shocked Germans and emboldened critics of Merkel's welcoming refugee policy to blame her for the attacks. 
“People are scared, completely understandably, and right now they need a credible answer from politicians,” said minister president of Bavaria Horst Seehofer, adding that it was “finally time to address people’s fears”.
Seehofer, leader of CSU, the sister party to Merkel's CDU, has long been critical of Merkel's migration policy and now criticises her for "dodging the issue".
The “policy of open borders cannot be tolerated any more”, he said, adding that terrorists were “using the [refugee] routes to enter Germany”.
Merkel has tried to project calm, staying put in her summer cottage. 
But due to the mounting pressure on her, she has called for a news conference for Thursday. 

Last night (July 26, 2016) at the Democratic National Convention, during the roll call vote to nominate Hillary Clinton as the party’s presidential candidate, some Bernie Sanders delegates undertook a peaceful protest in the convention hall with a sit-in, their mouths taped shut.

Democratic Party operatives called a SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team on the peaceful protesters!
Beginning at the 3:05 mark of the video below, FoxNews reporter Dough McKelway says:

“As you well know, the theme of this convention is ‘United together’. But the reality is something quite different — this is ununited and not terribly together.
We saw further evidence of that last night inside the auditorium when, during the role call vote and Bernie Sanders moved to nominate Hillary Clinton by acclimation, that many of his delegates stormed out of the convention center and they made their way to the media center not far from where we are. They staged a sit-in there, mouths taped shut, amongst the reporters. (Can you imagine trying to write a story on a deadline under circumstances like that?)
Well, decision was made to bring in a SWAT team. The SWAT team made the decision to contain the situation by quite literally containing the delegates.
And while all that was going on, back inside the auditorium, there was a celebratory feel to the whole affair as Hillary Clinton spoke to the delegations combined via video hookup.”
This is just a preview of what America will be under a Hillary presidency.


Caver said...

With Russia's pending restoration and tightening ties with Turkey combined with the elimination of the Israel/Syria buffer (identified above) the security situation of Israel is getting ready to change dramatically. If Israel takes a hard line, things could get tense quickly. Israel could easily find themselves in a "hot" combat exchange with Russia directly.

A strong US response, ready and willing to ease the NATO/European pressure points could well be in a position of bargaining on Israel's behalf with authority. Trump would have a very strong hand here....Obama has no hand and is not even interested.

Wow! To watch all of this preceding at this rate at the same time Trump is changing the political landscape in the US and real God Filled Revivals occurring in the US sure indicates a sure and certain clash of something in the very near future.

Just amazing.

Bt374 said...

It really is amazing to watch all that is going on!

It is also a bit embarrassing that a large portion of our country is mesmerized by debates over race and gender. Both race and gender issues (imho) find their roots in a narcissistic love of self. Obviously a worldview void of Gods word.
It is frustrating to watch as the world is diagnosed daily with yet another terminal illness that politics and diplomacy can't seem to fix.
War is quickly becoming the only logical implication for all parties involved.

With all due respect, these days are a minuscule glimpse of what life will be like after the restainer has left. To the lost and defiant, Truth means less every single day.

Praise God for His patience! For His Mercy!