The Syrian rebel militia Al Yarmouk Shuhada Brigades, backed and trained for two years by US officers, mostly CIA experts, in Jordan, and supported by the Israeli army, has abruptly dumped these sponsors and joined up with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
US troops have entered with its Iraqi partner, according to Colonel, Salam Nazim in line against ISIS elements and clashed with them for more than two hours, to succeed in removing them from al-Dolab area, and causing losses in their ranks, at a time American fighter jets directed several strikes focused on ISIS gatherings that silenced their heavy sources of fire. He points out that the clashes took place between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m. on Sunday night.
The motion was a watered-down version of an original resolution which had urged EU member states to recognize a Palestinian state unconditionally.
The resolution accepts “in principle recognition of Palestinian statehood and the two state solution, and believes these should go hand in hand with the development of peace talks, which should be advanced.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Wednesday that Europeans appeared to have learned nothing from the Holocaust, after a European Union court ordered the removal of the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas from its terror blacklist.
“Today we witnessed staggering examples of European hypocrisy: in Geneva they call for the investigation of Israel for war crimes, while in Luxemburg the European court removed Hamas from the list of terrorist organizations, Hamas that has committed countless war crimes and countless terror acts,” Netanyahu’s office quoted him as saying.
Netanyahu’s war crimes comment was apparently a reference to a speech made earlier this week in the International Criminal Court by the Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations, who said the Palestinians intended to apply for membership in the ICC.
Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum called Wednesday’s ruling a victory for the Palestinian nation and for its rights. Another Hamas spokesman, Sami Abu Zuhri, said it was a correction of a political mistake by the EU.
The sudden defection of this 2,000-strong anti-Assad force leaves IDF defense formations on the Golan, US and Jordanian deployments in the northern part of the kingdom, and pro-Western rebel conquests in southern Syria in danger of collapse.
The Brigades’ jump into the radical jihadi camp was negotiated in the last two weeks by its commander Mousab Ali Qarfan, who also goes by the name of Mousab Zaytouneh. He was in direct contact with ISIS chief Abu Baqr Al-Baghdadi, whom our sources report has recently relocated from Iraq to his northern Syrian headquarters at al-Raqqa.
Unlike the Sinai Islamists, Ansar Beit al Maqdis, the Yarmouk Brigades did not pledge allegiance to ISIS. The ir pact was forged as an operational alliance, which is just as grave a peril for the rebel militias’ abandoned allies.
For Israel, in particular, the new development is fraught with three dangers:
1. The Yarmouk Brigades are strung out along Israel’s Golan border with Syria, from the UN peacekeepers camp opposite Kibbutz Ein Zivan (see map) in the north, down to the Israeli-Syrian-Jordanian border junction in the south. The Brigades therefore sit along 45 of the total 76 kilometers of the Syrian-Israeli border. This means that a long stretch of Israel’s Golan border with Syria has fallen under the control of the Islamic State.
2. This militia also commands sections of the Syrian-Jordanian border, as well as districts of the southern Syrian town of Deraa. Therefore, the link between Jordan and southern Syria, which served American strategic interests, is now under military threat.
3. Islamic State forces are preparing to take advantage of their new asset with a buildup near the Druze Mountains (see map) for a rapid push south towards the town of Deraa, where they will join forces with their new ally.
Battle allegedly occurred near base where U.S. troops are stationed.
A news agency attached to the Shafaq Foundation for Culture and Media of Faili Kurds reports U.S. ground troops engaged in a battle with IS fighters.
The battle allegedly occurred near the Ain al-Asad base in western Ramadi, Iraq.
According to sources, the U.S. soldiers were equipped with light and medium weapons and supported by F-18 aircraft.
The report states the U.S. troops were “able to inflict casualties against fighters of ISIS organization, and forced them to retreat from the al-Dolab area, which lies 10 kilometers from Ain al-Assad base.”
In November 180 U.S. military advisors arrived at the base.
“The U.S. military advisors will help in training Iraqi combat forces to fight ISIS on the ground while the US-led coalition is supporting them by providing aerial cover. They will also help in setting the plan to liberate the province of Al-Anbar as they work closely with the Iraqi security forces,” Iraqi News reported on November 10.
On December 11 the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a measure authorizing the use of military force against the Islamic State but barred the use of ground troops.
The European Parliament overwhelmingly backed the recognition of a Palestinian state “in principle” on Wednesday, following a series of votes on the issue in EU nations.
The resolution also urged Fatah and Hamas “to end internal divisions” and highlighted “the importance of consolidating the authority of the Palestinian consensus government.”
The vote came hours after a European court ordered the EU to drop the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas from its terrorism blacklist on technical grounds.
France, Britain, Spain, Ireland and Portugal have all passed votes to that end.
Sweden has gone even further, officially recognizing Palestine as a state.
Jerusalem has maintained that recognition should only come once bilateral negotiations produce a two-state solution.
The motions, including Wednesday’s EU vote, are largely symbolic in nature and intended to put pressure on both sides to renew peace negotiations, which stalled in April after a nine-month, US-brokered effort.
The Palestinian Authority estimates that 135 countries have now recognized Palestine as a state, although that number is disputed.
“It seems that too many in Europe, on whose soil six million Jews were slaughtered, have learned nothing,” Netanyahu added.
“But we in Israel, we’ve learned. We’ll continue to defend our people and our state against the forces of terror and tyranny and hypocrisy,” he said at the start of a meeting with US Republican Senator-elect Joni Ernst.The General Court of the EU ruled Wednesday that the original listing of Hamas as a terror group in 2001 was based not on sound legal judgment but on conclusions derived from the media and the Internet.
Earlier Wednesday, Netanyahu called on the EU to return the group to the terror list, saying Israel was “not satisfied with EU’s explanations that taking Hamas off the terror list is a ‘technical matter.’”
“The burden of proof falls on the EU, and we expect it to permanently return Hamas to the list, so everyone will understand that it is an inseparable part of it — Hamas is a murderous terror organization that emphasizes in its charter that its goal is to destroy Israel,” he said in a statement.
In a meeting Wednesday morning with the Foreign Ministry, EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen said that EU intends to do everything it can to get Hamas back on the list.
Plan B, anyone seen Plan B?
Geepers, no Plan B! OK, keep on with Plan A, just don't tell nobody what happened. Our fighters are doing well. All is good.
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