Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Syrian Border Chaos, Turkey Invades Syria - Clearly Supporting ISIS, Weapons Being Tested In Syria

Syrian Border Chaos as NATO Aims to Win Proxy War

An engineered drama unfolds along the Turkish-Syrian border as terrorists armed and backed by a US-led coalition including NATO-member Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar allegedly battle both the self-proclaimed “Islamic State” (ISIS) and Syrian-backed “Syrian Democratic Forces” (SDF) near and around the Syrian city of Azaz.

Reuters in a recent article titled, “Islamic State advance near Turkish border, civilians trapped,” reports that:

Islamic State fighters captured territory from Syrian rebels near the Turkish border on Friday and inched closer to a town on a supply route for foreign-backed insurgents fighting the jihadists, a monitoring group said. 

The hardline group has been fighting against rebels in the area for several months. The rebels, who are supplied via Turkey, last month staged a major push against Islamic State, but the group counter-attacked and beat them back.

Reuters, however, leaves out very crucial information – information that if concludes, would raise suspicions about the entire narrative alleged across Western media outlets like Reuters.
If rebels are being directly supplied across the Turkish-Syrian border by a multinational coalition, how is it possible that ISIS forces are somehow better equipped and able to overwhelm these forces? The length of any ISIS logistical line supporting its fighters in this alleged battle – if not also extending over the Turkish-Syrian border in the immediate vicinity of the fighting, must be hundreds of miles long and in itself an immense strain on ISIS’ fighting capacity.

It would be rather remarkable, in fact, unbelievable for ISIS to somehow not be being aided and abetted from directly across the Turkish-Syrian border where allegedly “foreign-backed insurgents” are allegedly receiving aid from nations like the US, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar.

And in fact, ISIS, as well as Al Qaeda’s Al Nusra Front, are accused of receiving such aid via Turkey – most recently with the Russian General Staff accusing Al Nusra of receiving “daily arms shipments across the border from Turkey.”

For Syria, securing its own borders has been infinitely problematic. Attempts to approach and retake territory along the borders has been met not only by obviously Turkish-backed terrorist forces, but also by NATO-backed Turkish military provocations. Turkey regularly shells Syrian territory. Its aircraft and anti-aircraft systems have regularly been deployed along the border attempting to deter first Syrian, then Russian aircraft from targeting the streams of supplies being sent into Syrian territory to sustain terrorist groups including ISIS and Al Nusra.

Attempting to avoid a more direct and costly confrontation with Turkey has forced Syria and its allies to take a more indirect means of securing the borders, using SDF fighters to occupy and face off against Turkish and NATO forces without implicating Damascus directly.

Conversely, the use of these irregular forces has given NATO apparent leeway to make incursions of its own into Syrian territory – as they can claim they are not fighting Syrian forces, but merely “Kurdish terrorists.” While this chaffs directly with America’s alleged support of Kurdish groups elsewhere in the country, this is mitigated by a feigned political fallout between Washington and Ankara – despite US forces still graciously being hosted in Turkey and the two still clearly working in tandem toward the destruction of neighboring Syria.

A multinational peacekeeping force placed along Syria’s northern border or Syrian-Russian bases placed further north may force one of two moves by the US and its collaborators. Directly attacking peacekeepers or Syrian-Russian bases from Turkish territory risking a wider war, or using proxies in Turkish territory, but at the cost of further exposing Washington and Ankara’s hands in propping up and perpetuating Al Qaeda and ISIS.

Turkey has reportedly launched a ground invasion of Syria over the memorial day weekend. Their army units are currently being spotted in vicinity of Aleppo.

Reports first broke Friday on the Al Mayadeen TV Channel that Turkish soldiers had set a checkpoint near the city of Afrin, a predominately Kurdish city located 60 km Northwest of Aleppo province. Prior to the troop movement, Turkish artillery had barraged areas of the Syrian Aleppo province including Menagh Military Airbase (50km from Aleppo), a captured ISIS airbase occupied by Kurdish People’s Protection Units near the city of Azaz. Pravda reported the strikes hit civilian homes.

On Monday, Ahmet Arac, a member of the Democratic Majlis of Syria and of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PDS) confirmed to Sputnik the validity of previous reports Erdogan’s forces had crossed the Turkish-Syrian border Friday.

“Yesterday the Turkish Army carried out rocket attacks on the positions of Democratic Forces of Syria,” Arac said. “Two days ago, the Turkish military entered the village of Hamam in Afrin area. We are ready to repel any attack. Meanwhile, FSA units are suffering serious defeat in clashes with Daesh. They have already lost control of 12 villages. If Daesh comes to Azaz, ‘Democratic Syrian Forces’ will repel the jihadists, and not allow them to enter the city.” Arac warned.

On Tuesday FARS News Agency, Tehran’s unofficial mouthpiece, reported that several units of the Turkish Army had crossed the border with Aleppo province in Northern Syria and have deployed forces in vicinity of Azaz and Marea. FNA quoted Sputnik’s Monday source, Ahmet Arac, as saying that “hundreds of the Turkish soldiers crossed the Syrian border at Bab al-Salameh border-crossing and deployed their forces in al-Shahba’a region near Marea and Azaz.”

Arac also said the Turkish Army had carried out rocket attacks Sunday on the positions of Democratic Forces of Syria and that on Saturday Turkish military forces had once again crossed into Syria, were heading toward the Northern province of Aleppo, and had set up a checkpoint in the region.
The FNA article also stated that a large number of Turkish soldiers, accompanied by several armored vehicles, entered the territory of Syria from Jandires region, 700 meter away from the Northwestern lands of Aleppo, and set up a military checkpoint to monitor civilians’ movements in the border region.


If true, these latest moves by Erdogan’s regime constitute an outright invasion of Syrian sovereignty. Syrian President Bashar Assad has previously condemned Turkey as a complicit arm of ISIS, and has said that the insurgent forces are receiving physical aid from the government of both Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

In an interview with Sputnik on March 31st Assad said:

“..Turkey, as well as Saudi Arabia, have crossed all possible red lines, possibly from the first weeks of the Syrian war. Today, the war against Erdogan and against Saudi Arabia is a war against terrorists. The Turkish army, which is not even Turkish, is Erdogan’s army that is fighting today in Syria. Everything that Ankara and Riyadh have done from the very beginning can be considered aggression. Aggression in a political sense or in a military sense – providing terrorists with arms – or direct aggression with the use of artillery, and other military violations. 

Erdogan is directly supporting the terrorists as he allows them to move into Turkish territory, to carry out maneuvers with tanks. 

But if true, what exactly does Turkey look to accomplish by this land incursion and directly supporting ISIS? Andrei Manoilo, Doctor of Political Sciences and a Professor at Moscow State University told Pravda that:

“I think that Turkey is going to unblock a part of the Syrian-Turkish border, because the Russian and Syrian forces, as well as Kurdish units, intend to take the Syrian-Turkish border entirely under their control to cut the channels of illegal arms supplies from Turkey to the terrorist group in Aleppo. Storming a large city is always extremely difficult. Terrorists from Jabhat en-Nusra and ISIL still hold a half of the city. If they are deprived of supplies, if their channels are cut, then the group in Aleppo is doomed to destruction. Turkey does not like such a prospect, so they intend to change the situation – they need to push the Syrian troops away from the border.”

This February Russia deployed a new version of the Pantsir S2 air defense system to its Khmeimim airbase in Syria.
This is the newest short-to-medium range, mobile, fully autonomous system in Russia’s inventory designed to protect infrastructure and troops. 
The system is an “engagement cupola” with a 40 km radius and a 15 km height. The combined missile + 30 mm autocannon setup makes it an effective weapon against aircraft, cruise missiles, helicopters, anti-radiation missiles, ballistic missiles, rockets and even artillery shells. The list includes high velocity targets flying at over 3600 km/h, “stealth” aircraft and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV).  
The armament consists of 12 surface-to-air guided missiles and two 30 mm automatic guns. The reaction time is 4–6 seconds.
The new 57E6-E missile installed on the Pantsir SM2 version can shoot down airborne targets flying up to Mach 3 (1,000 m/s) at ranges between 1.2 to 20 kilometers and altitudes varying from 5 to 10,000 meters. Minimal range is 1 km. Maximum altitude is 8 km. Also noteworthy is the heavy weight of the warhead (16–20 kg) at the small launch weight of the missile (90 kg), along with the employment of rod subprojectiles in the warhead ensuring positive engagement of a broad class of targets. The warhead has a form of “continuous rod”. The effectiveness of elongated rod warhead is proportional to warhead length and inversely proportional to warhead diameter. The missile is believed to have a hit probability of 70–95% and have a 15-year storage lifetime in its sealed containers.

No comments: