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Syria

I have seen two versions of this story. One says AC-130 are being jammed over Syria; the other that EC-130 are being jammed. Take your pick but an interesting story.

Why Syria may be the most aggressive electronic warfare environment on Earth

Russia Widens EW War, ‘Disabling’ EC-130s In Syria
Those stories are a bit vague as to what is going on, but this press release from the Russian ministry of defence may shed a bit of light. Russian Defence Minister: alleged chemical attack in Douma was a stage : Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
The press release covers several issues, but the following bit is the most relevant to your topic:
According to him, terrorists are using modern weapons, including strikes unmanned aerial vehicles.

“UAVs used by insurgents in Syria are capable to operate at the distance of more than 100 kilometers. Production of these aircraft is impossible without technical assistance of developed countries. Use of such UAVs in inhabited areas can cause catastrophes,” stressed Sergei Shoigu.
Putting two and two together suggests they may be jamming GPS signals over a wide area, with the specific goal of preventing UAV use by the rebels. There were previous reports that various rebel groups were using commercial "drones" for reconnaissance, propaganda, and direct attack purposes.

The American press releases are vague as to what their exact problem is, but wide scale GPS jamming would fit in with what they did say. The heavy reliance on GPS by the Americans for nearly everything may make them vulnerable to this. Current cool relations between Washington and Moscow means the two are not inclined to cooperate with one another to find ways to mitigate such problems.
 
SteveLancs said:
Please try not to answer a question with a question, if you can.

Scalie Avator-man "Please try and answer some of the points put across to counter your agitprop."

You couldn't do it, could you? Missing off the question mark doesn't do the trick.
Irony black hole....

Do you live at 78 Sap Rd, Khwaeng Si Phraya, Khet Bang Rak?
 
Those stories are a bit vague as to what is going on, but this press release from the Russian ministry of defence may shed a bit of light. Russian Defence Minister: alleged chemical attack in Douma was a stage : Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
The press release covers several issues, but the following bit is the most relevant to your topic:


Putting two and two together suggests they may be jamming GPS signals over a wide area, with the specific goal of preventing UAV use by the rebels. There were previous reports that various rebel groups were using commercial "drones" for reconnaissance, propaganda, and direct attack purposes.

The American press releases are vague as to what their exact problem is, but wide scale GPS jamming would fit in with what they did say. The heavy reliance on GPS by the Americans for nearly everything may make them vulnerable to this. Current cool relations between Washington and Moscow means the two are not inclined to cooperate with one another to find ways to mitigate such problems.
That's a decent hypothesis. Timing wise, the Russians apparently shot down some UAV over Hmeimim yesterday, so they face a threat sufficient in their own minds to excuse the risk of unintended - but doubtless amusing to them - consequences for their competitors in Syria. There was apparently a UAV attack on the same airbase a few months ago, in which some Su24 were damaged by what I assume were hand grenades used as ad-hoc aerial bombs.

The dependence on technology carries some risks - we are definitely at the level of not being able to do some things without certain technologies, as the Kunduz incident described in the article provided by @scalieback indicates. One of the interesting things about the SCW is the way in which, despite some advances (using UAV and walkie-talkies to direct infantry, etc) it's a low tech war on the ground [Russian EW aside].
 
Apologies for this post. A lot of news items are cropping up today. S-300 to Syria? rumours Part 94:

Syria to receive new missile defense systems in near future — Russian General Staff

Basically it's Tass reporting the comments of a Russian General re. Russians training the Syrian military on the use of a 'new' air defence system.
Here's the actual press release the TASS story was based on. Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Colonel General Sergei Rudskoy held a briefing for media representatives : Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
There is no mention of S-300 missiles anywhere in there.

The press release itself focuses on damage analysis for the 14th of April cruise missile attack. Here's what I found to be the most interesting parts.

There were five interception areas near Damascus where the cruise missiles were shot down by air defences. Three were to the west of Damascus, and two were to the east.
Taking into account trajectories of missiles’ flight and capabilities of the Syrian air defence systems, they were all struck in five interception areas, three of which are located in the west of the Syrian capital, and two ones – to the east.
The recovered fragments of the missiles have the characteristic holes in them caused by fragments from the SA missile warheads.
Fragments of cruise missiles found in these interception areas have characteristic holes from the striking elements of anti-aircraft guided missiles. There are marks with serial numbers, dates and manufacturers, and other data on mechanical units and components. Specialists will be able to easily identify the belonging of these fragments. Some of them are demonstrated at the exposition.
Some of the missiles did not reach their targets due to malfunctions. Two of them, of two different types, were sent to Moscow where they will be examined.
Part of the missiles did not reach the targets, apparently because of technical malfunctions, creating a threat of destruction of civilian objects and the death of civilians. Two of them, including the Tomahawk cruise missile and an air high-precision missile, were transported to Moscow.

Now they are being examined by Russian specialists. The results of this work will be used to improve Russian weapons.
The air defence missiles used in the Damascus area were the Pantsyr, Osa, Strela-10, Buk, Kvadrat, and S-125.
The obtained intelligence and objective monitoring data from air defence systems, work on the ground, and a survey of witnesses show that Pantsyr, Osa, Strela-10, Buk, Kvadrat, and S-125 air defence missile systems, covering the capital of Syria and Duvali, Dumayr, Blai, and Mazzeh nearby airfields of the Syrian Air Force, hit forty-six cruise missiles.
The air defence missiles used in the Homs area were the Pantsyr, Osa, Buk, S-125, and Kvadrat.
In total, 20 missiles were shot down in three areas of the responsibility zone of air defence of Homs by Pantsyr, Osa, Buk, S-125, and Kvadrat air defence missile systems of the Syrian armed forces.
The above detail may be useful when examining the photos presented elsewhere which are said to be cruise missile debris.


Further to my previous post which referenced insurgent use of UAVs, the Russians said they shot down two UAVs belonging to insurgents near the Russian airbase in Latakia (near the coast of Syria).
Yesterday, at 8.00 p.m., Russian air defence systems detected and shot down two UAVs of insurgents at the distance of 10 kilometers from the Khmeimim airbase.
Nearly 5,500 insurgents and their families have left Eastern Qalamoun.
Over the past four days, 5,495 insurgents and their family members have left Eastern Qalamoun for the north of Syria. State power bodies started working in the area, and infrastructure is being recovered.
The list of kit recovered from the rebels in Eastern Qalamoun includes the following:
  • 28 tanks
  • 23 Scud tactical missiles
  • 35 anti-tank grenade launchers
  • a large number of small arms
  • TOW anti-tank guided missiles and others
In total, 28 tanks, 23 Scud tactical missiles, 35 anti-tank grenade launchers, and a large number of small arms, previously seized from the Syrian army, were handed over to the government troops by the militants. Origin and routes of delivery of west-made weapons to the Damascus region are of particular interest. There are TOW anti-tank guided missiles and others.
 
That's a decent hypothesis. Timing wise, the Russians apparently shot down some UAV over Hmeimim yesterday, so they face a threat sufficient in their own minds to excuse the risk of unintended - but doubtless amusing to them - consequences for their competitors in Syria. There was apparently a UAV attack on the same airbase a few months ago, in which some Su24 were damaged by what I assume were hand grenades used as ad-hoc aerial bombs.

The dependence on technology carries some risks - we are definitely at the level of not being able to do some things without certain technologies, as the Kunduz incident described in the article provided by @scalieback indicates. One of the interesting things about the SCW is the way in which, despite some advances (using UAV and walkie-talkies to direct infantry, etc) it's a low tech war on the ground [Russian EW aside].
I’ve no doubt the Russians (and Syrians) are using their extensive EW cap to stop/deny/obstruct micro UAVs (and AAVs) in use by rebel forces. To use their own they need to ensure those freq’s are free. They will need to change those freq’s like radio’s on a fairly regular basis.

Much as I’d like to think they would deconflict with coalition assets, I doubt it very much, especially coalition assets over areas of Syria not covered by the SDF. They don’t want anyone me to record what is going on and there’s a lot of footage. A lot.

I believe direct ‘attacks’ over W Syria and ‘broad frequency’ obstruction are the order of the day. Ostensibly to deny rebel U/AAVs with the added benefits of ‘affecting’ coalition assets in the area.

Even before the strikes there was little or no reason to ‘assist’ and there’s less now.
 
Here's the actual press release the TASS story was based on. Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Colonel General Sergei Rudskoy held a briefing for media representatives : Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
There is no mention of S-300 missiles anywhere in there.

The press release itself focuses on damage analysis for the 14th of April cruise missile attack. Here's what I found to be the most interesting parts.

There were five interception areas near Damascus where the cruise missiles were shot down by air defences. Three were to the west of Damascus, and two were to the east.


The recovered fragments of the missiles have the characteristic holes in them caused by fragments from the SA missile warheads.


Some of the missiles did not reach their targets due to malfunctions. Two of them, of two different types, were sent to Moscow where they will be examined.


The air defence missiles used in the Damascus area were the Pantsyr, Osa, Strela-10, Buk, Kvadrat, and S-125.


The air defence missiles used in the Homs area were the Pantsyr, Osa, Buk, S-125, and Kvadrat.


The above detail may be useful when examining the photos presented elsewhere which are said to be cruise missile debris.


Further to my previous post which referenced insurgent use of UAVs, the Russians said they shot down two UAVs belonging to insurgents near the Russian airbase in Latakia (near the coast of Syria).


Nearly 5,500 insurgents and their families have left Eastern Qalamoun.


The list of kit recovered from the rebels in Eastern Qalamoun includes the following:
  • 28 tanks
  • 23 Scud tactical missiles
  • 35 anti-tank grenade launchers
  • a large number of small arms
  • TOW anti-tank guided missiles and others
Thanks for that - very interesting.
I am struggling a bit with the Coalition vs Russian account of the missile attacks. IF the Russians are correct, there's been a large scale failure [or successful countering] of cruise missiles and there's little news, or even rumour, to support that contention. On the other hand, it seems unlikely that the Coalition attack was 100% successful - something generally goes wrong (as in the reports - unconfirmed as far as I know - that French warships could not launch SSM due to technical issues).
If the Coalition attacks were largely successful, then the Russians are putting a great deal of effort into what would be a propaganda campaign. At the same time, the Russians know that the Coalition has the means to demonstrate that the 'shoot down' claims are false, and has not done so.
With no independent evidence, and based on common sense and a review of competing claims, including your own analysis of a few days back, I would suggest that a proportion of the US/Fr/UK were shot down, or experienced technical failure. However, the Russian numbers for intercepted missiles seems as unlikely as the coalition's claim that none were lost.

East Qalamoun is a huge success for Assad; he can free up yet more manpower whilst shipping the committed rebels to Idlib, to stew or take part in a civil war within a civil war. At the same time, former rebels are coming back into the government fold, seemingly without penalty (for now) which is a smart move by the regime.
 
That's a decent hypothesis. Timing wise, the Russians apparently shot down some UAV over Hmeimim yesterday, so they face a threat sufficient in their own minds to excuse the risk of unintended - but doubtless amusing to them - consequences for their competitors in Syria. There was apparently a UAV attack on the same airbase a few months ago, in which some Su24 were damaged by what I assume were hand grenades used as ad-hoc aerial bombs.
Hmeimim was mentioned in the press release that I was busy commenting on when you posted this. See here: https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/threads/syria.161743/post-8539869
The problem is apparently viewed as serious enough by the Russians for them to mention it in a press briefing.

The dependence on technology carries some risks - we are definitely at the level of not being able to do some things without certain technologies, as the Kunduz incident described in the article provided by @scalieback indicates. One of the interesting things about the SCW is the way in which, despite some advances (using UAV and walkie-talkies to direct infantry, etc) it's a low tech war on the ground [Russian EW aside].
I have seen mentioned in a number of sources over the past few years that the Americans may be overly dependent upon GPS for far too many things.

Even in civilian applications people are starting to worry about GPS having become a single point of failure for far too many things. It's not just used for positioning and navigation, it is also used for precision timing to control many static applications which have to communicate over a wide area, such as newer generation cellular networks, large scale computer networks, and other such things are heavily dependent upon it. I doubt that there is any comprehensive list of applications.

And the threat isn't necessarily just hostile action. A very strong solar storm could knock out many satellites, including GPS.
 
Thanks for that - very interesting.
I am struggling a bit with the Coalition vs Russian account of the missile attacks. IF the Russians are correct, there's been a large scale failure [or successful countering] of cruise missiles and there's little news, or even rumour, to support that contention. On the other hand, it seems unlikely that the Coalition attack was 100% successful - something generally goes wrong (as in the reports - unconfirmed as far as I know - that French warships could not launch SSM due to technical issues).
Neither side has much incentive to be entirely forthcoming with the facts. For one thing, neither side will want to get into a dialogue which results in a situation where they have to release information they didn't want to reveal in order to keep up their side of things.

It would probably pay to look at the statements from each side in light of not just what they want you and I to believe, but also what they want their opponents to say and show in response so that they can glean information about how they operate and what their procedures and training are.

The Syrians say they have some comparatively intact missiles that they are handing over to the Russians? Do they? If so, just exactly how intact are they? I'm sure the Americans would love to know, assuming the objects in question exist.

The Americans say that all their (and allied) missiles hit their targets? How do they know? What does that say about the means they used to determine that? How reliable is it? I'm sure the Russians would like to know more, assuming that it did indeed happen.

Were all the cruise missiles of a type which carried a warhead, or were some electronic decoys intended to help the others reach their targets? Did the latter "hit their target" if they just emitted the signals they were intended to emit, regardless of whether or not they went eventually nose first into the location of the overall objective? If so, then is that something the Americans would be willing to talk about?

If the Coalition attacks were largely successful, then the Russians are putting a great deal of effort into what would be a propaganda campaign. At the same time, the Russians know that the Coalition has the means to demonstrate that the 'shoot down' claims are false, and has not done so.
With no independent evidence, and based on common sense and a review of competing claims, including your own analysis of a few days back, I would suggest that a proportion of the US/Fr/UK were shot down, or experienced technical failure. However, the Russian numbers for intercepted missiles seems as unlikely as the coalition's claim that none were lost.
If the missiles were shot down or just crashed due to malfunction, then where are the photos from Syria that show more than a few small bits? Of course as I've said above, the Syrians and Russians also have incentive to not show their cards at this time. Perhaps they are hoping to get the Americans to stick their necks out more before showing their prize exhibits.

Of course ultimately we've seen the pulverised buildings in Damascus, and the Syrians themselves said three targets took quite a hammering. Ultimately though this event will have no measurable effect on the outcome of the war either way.

East Qalamoun is a huge success for Assad; he can free up yet more manpower whilst shipping the committed rebels to Idlib, to stew or take part in a civil war within a civil war. At the same time, former rebels are coming back into the government fold, seemingly without penalty (for now) which is a smart move by the regime.
Wrapping up the rebel enclaves in southern and central Syria would I think put the war in general into a new phase. I suspect the next phase will more critically depend on Russian diplomacy to ease the Turks into reaching an modus vivendi with Damascus. Without that the rebels of Idlib and the Kurds will be a never ending problem for Ankara.

Trump is looking to pack up and go home and a change in attitude by the Turks would give him an excuse for that, if he doesn't have enough of one already.

There will still be a rebel problem for many years to come, but the Middle East wasn't exactly known as a peaceful place before all this started anyway.
 
Neither side has much incentive to be entirely forthcoming with the facts
You are not wrong.
Passage of information dictates what the public are supposed to think and/or consider as relevant.

Take this piece coming after OPCW inspected the supposed CW manufacturing station at the Barzeh Research Centre.
Barzeh was absolutely malleted by 'the coalition of the willing's' A/S as it was a chemical weapons manufacturing plant
Very confusing that in retaliation to a CW attack the 'coalition of the willing' were more than happy to expose large areas to unknown amounts of CW by using HE on target.
.U.S. says air strikes cripple Syria chemical weapons program

But now after the OPCW inspection things are now doing a 180' as there was no trace of any CW found at loc.

Russia: OPCW Found No Chemical Weapons in Sites Hit by US-Led Strikes

'Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Col. Gen. Sergey Rudskoy has announced that the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) had confirmed that there were no chemical weapons found at the Barzeh research center in Damascus despite the US officials' claims.
The official further noted that thousands of people could have died if there was any chemical weapon on the sites that were attacked by the US-led coalition.
"Immediately after the attacks, many people who worked at these destroyed facilities and just bystanders without any protective equipment visited them. None of them got poisoned with toxic agents," Rudskoy said.
He said the logic of strikes on alleged facilities with toxic agents in Syria was unclear, because if toxic agents had theoretically been stored there, tens of thousands of people would have died after the cruise missile strikes.'


Obviously to counter this claim all OPCW have to do is publicise the report that I'm having difficulty locating.
There's nothing on their feeds about any of this.
OPCW (@OPCW) | Twitter
OPCW Fact-Finding Mission Team Visits Douma, Syria

They need to hurry TFU or their image of impartiality and neutrality will be damaged and the nay-sayers who say they work primarily for western interests will have legitimacy.

This footage is from Barzeh while it was still smouldering away, you will probably notice that no one in the footage is wearing any PPE.

Then we come to the US/UK/frogs having concrete intelligence that the Syrians did the deed to their own people in Douma on 07/04/18.

France has proof Syrian government conducted chemical weapons...
Evidence shows Syria 'attacked own people with chemical weapons', say US, UK and France
US says it has proof Assad's regime carried out Douma gas attack


Now disregard the headlines and scratch the surface to find out what int they're working off:
Do they have comms /email NSA/GCHQ intercepts?
No just twitter/FB feeds and evidence gleaned from watching video footage and, of course, the White Lids and their IS/AQ mates confirmed everything.

French declassified intelligence report on Syria gas attacks
French declassified intelligence report on Syria gas attacks

So just a week after the apparent attack everybody knows for certain who did it.
But how could they have 100% gen int when nobody had actually examined the area?

Reuters:
PARIS: France concluded after technical analysis of open sources
(FB/twitter etc)and "reliable intelligence" (White lids) that a chemical attack on Douma on April 7 was carried out by Syrian government forces, a declassified intelligence report showed on Saturday.
The information collected by France forms a body of evidence that is sufficient to attribute responsibility for the chemical attacks of 7 April to the Syrian regime. 1. - Several chemical attacks took place at Douma on 7 April 2018.


The French services analysed the testimonies, photos and videos that spontaneously appeared on specialized websites, in the press and on social media in the hours and days following the attack.

Testimonies obtained by the French services were also analysed. After examining the videos and images of victims published online, they were able to conclude with a high degree of confidence that the vast majority(??) are recent and not fabricated. The spontaneous circulation of these images across all social networks confirms that they were not video montages or recycled images. Lastly, some of the entities that published this information are generally considered reliable.


So all parties are also making this up to suit themselves.
'High degree of confidence' is not proof as we see from Salisbury.

When they say testimonies do they mean testimonies like this?


You can now all avoid any reference to the elephant in the room and go back to talking about kit if you want.

 
It looks as broad offensive on all fronts. 'Most likely' game over moment is not far away.
Probably why the KSA are trying to strong arm Qatar at this precise moment in time.
Saudi Arabia Backs US, Says Qatar Must Deploy Troops in Syria
Saudi Arabia: Qatar must pay for US troops in Syria or risk regime change

Funny old world isn't it? D'ye think that people may Forget it.....
Certainly is.......


steve i just want to chirp in with one or two observations: there is no regime here. this is a site for serving and ex-serving squaddies. the discussions are often at a good level of knowledge.....where you say you would be better suited in finding a forum which is more in line with your knowledge of world events....this place isn't for you
That old chestnut?
Mr Lancs get ready for being pinged and having your posts 'reported' to the monitors and put on rippers.
Keep it up, if you're rx'ing messages like this it means they realise they can't beat you without cheating.
 
I am struggling a bit with the Coalition vs Russian account of the missile attacks.
'Most likely' the truth is somewhere between. From my point of view
Pentagon's claim that all missiles and bombs (without exceptions) reached the targets is doubtful.
The exhibition in Moscow is not impressive at all.
There is no even one photo of downed missile made on the spot and it is telling.
At best only a few (if any) missiles were downed.
'Highly likely' indeed 2 missiles failed to hit the targets and we see their remains.
Both sides tell half-truth at best.

As for Qalamoun, then a few days ago Russian mass media reported about huge arsenal of weapons appeared in hands of Assad forces (including 38 tanks). It was reported that the whole rebels units changed sides and joined government forces. At first I thought that it is just propaganda but now the tanks, weapons, former rebel fighters were shown on Russian TV.
It looks as the end of the civil war is near.
 
'Most likely' the truth is somewhere between. From my point of view
Pentagon's claim that all missiles and bombs (without exceptions) reached the targets is doubtful.
The exhibition in Moscow is not impressive at all.
There is no even one photo of downed missile made on the spot and it is telling.
At best only a few (if any) missiles were downed.
'Highly likely' indeed 2 missiles failed to hit the targets and we see their remains.
Both sides tell half-truth at best.

As for Qalamoun, then a few days ago Russian mass media reported about huge arsenal of weapons appeared in hands of Assad forces (including 38 tanks). It was reported that the whole rebels units changed sides and joined government forces. At first I thought that it is just propaganda but now the tanks, weapons, former rebel fighters were shown on Russian TV.
It looks as the end of the civil war is near.
I agree re. the result of the missile attacks. It is likely that a few failed or were brought down.
By the way, and based purely on the number of heavy lift aircraft flying into Hmeimim in recent days, I wonder if something is being deployed to Syria in response to the attacks? Yesterday, both An124 and IL76 flew in. IL76 is routine but the An124 less so. Anyway, speculation and it could easily be an shipment of something quite mundane.
Tweeters who monitor the Bosphorus have reported an increase in heavy lift ships heading to Tartous, including deck cargo of light sand-painted trucks (for DeZ area?), and the deployment of additional Russian Navy vessels to the Eastern Med. This chap is worth a follow: (nice photo of a Kilo class sub at Tartous in his time line)


Re. the course of the war as a whole, it seems as good as over in the West (Latakia and the North West excluded). The doubt lies in the East (SDF/Turkish FSA issues to resolve), Idlib and Erdoğan's new Ottoman Empire. Add to that Macron's new, Blair-like, interest in saving the Middle East, and talk of direct KSA involvement and I can't guess what will happen.
Purely on a hunch, I can't see Erdoğan just upping and leaving. I know there's a deal, etc but Erdoğan has invested reputation in Syria, as well as infrastructure to an extent, and Turkey has shed blood. Put another way, how will he leave and not lose some face?

Edit: here's that Kilo at Tartous:

IMG_20180426_072640.jpg
 
Last edited:
You are not wrong.
Passage of information dictates what the public are supposed to think and/or consider as relevant.

Take this piece coming after OPCW inspected the supposed CW manufacturing station at the Barzeh Research Centre.
Barzeh was absolutely malleted by 'the coalition of the willing's' A/S as it was a chemical weapons manufacturing plant
Very confusing that in retaliation to a CW attack the 'coalition of the willing' were more than happy to expose large areas to unknown amounts of CW by using HE on target.
.U.S. says air strikes cripple Syria chemical weapons program

But now after the OPCW inspection things are now doing a 180' as there was no trace of any CW found at loc.

Russia: OPCW Found No Chemical Weapons in Sites Hit by US-Led Strikes

'Chief of the Main Operational Directorate of the Russian General Staff Col. Gen. Sergey Rudskoy has announced that the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) had confirmed that there were no chemical weapons found at the Barzeh research center in Damascus despite the US officials' claims.
The official further noted that thousands of people could have died if there was any chemical weapon on the sites that were attacked by the US-led coalition.
"Immediately after the attacks, many people who worked at these destroyed facilities and just bystanders without any protective equipment visited them. None of them got poisoned with toxic agents," Rudskoy said.
He said the logic of strikes on alleged facilities with toxic agents in Syria was unclear, because if toxic agents had theoretically been stored there, tens of thousands of people would have died after the cruise missile strikes.'


Obviously to counter this claim all OPCW have to do is publicise the report that I'm having difficulty locating.
There's nothing on their feeds about any of this.
OPCW (@OPCW) | Twitter
OPCW Fact-Finding Mission Team Visits Douma, Syria

They need to hurry TFU or their image of impartiality and neutrality will be damaged and the nay-sayers who say they work primarily for western interests will have legitimacy.

This footage is from Barzeh while it was still smouldering away, you will probably notice that no one in the footage is wearing any PPE.

Then we come to the US/UK/frogs having concrete intelligence that the Syrians did the deed to their own people in Douma on 07/04/18.

France has proof Syrian government conducted chemical weapons...
Evidence shows Syria 'attacked own people with chemical weapons', say US, UK and France
US says it has proof Assad's regime carried out Douma gas attack


Now disregard the headlines and scratch the surface to find out what int they're working off:
Do they have comms /email NSA/GCHQ intercepts?
No just twitter/FB feeds and evidence gleaned from watching video footage and, of course, the White Lids and their IS/AQ mates confirmed everything.

French declassified intelligence report on Syria gas attacks
French declassified intelligence report on Syria gas attacks

So just a week after the apparent attack everybody knows for certain who did it.
But how could they have 100% gen int when nobody had actually examined the area?

Reuters:
PARIS: France concluded after technical analysis of open sources
(FB/twitter etc)and "reliable intelligence" (White lids) that a chemical attack on Douma on April 7 was carried out by Syrian government forces, a declassified intelligence report showed on Saturday.
The information collected by France forms a body of evidence that is sufficient to attribute responsibility for the chemical attacks of 7 April to the Syrian regime. 1. - Several chemical attacks took place at Douma on 7 April 2018.


The French services analysed the testimonies, photos and videos that spontaneously appeared on specialized websites, in the press and on social media in the hours and days following the attack.

Testimonies obtained by the French services were also analysed. After examining the videos and images of victims published online, they were able to conclude with a high degree of confidence that the vast majority(??) are recent and not fabricated. The spontaneous circulation of these images across all social networks confirms that they were not video montages or recycled images. Lastly, some of the entities that published this information are generally considered reliable.

So all parties are also making this up to suit themselves.
'High degree of confidence' is not proof as we see from Salisbury.

When they say testimonies do they mean testimonies like this?


You can now all avoid any reference to the elephant in the room and go back to talking about kit if you want.

OPCW will publish their report in good time. Seeing as they’ve only just sent specimens to their labs I expect it will take a while.

Only Russian trolls, ‘useful idiots’ and ‘walting conspiraloons’ question their impartiality
 
Probably why the KSA are trying to strong arm Qatar at this precise moment in time.
Saudi Arabia Backs US, Says Qatar Must Deploy Troops in Syria
Saudi Arabia: Qatar must pay for US troops in Syria or risk regime change


Certainly is.......




That old chestnut?
Mr Lancs get ready for being pinged and having your posts 'reported' to the monitors and put on rippers.
Keep it up, if you're rx'ing messages like this it means they realise they can't beat you without cheating.
It’s easy to ‘beat’ somebody who adds nothing to the site.
 
It looks as the end of the civil war is near.
I admire your optimism. Will he have ‘won’ like he did in November last year? Or will he allow Tr sponsored FSA and SDF to control their areas?
 
Purely on a hunch, I can't see Erdoğan just upping and leaving. I know there's a deal, etc but Erdoğan has invested reputation in Syria, as well as infrastructure to an extent, and Turkey has shed blood. Put another way, how will he leave and not lose some face
Call election of ‘executive powers’ President early and when you win, ‘declare victory’ and withdraw troops. or just before the ‘election’? :)

Are Tr regular and FSA forces staying? Moving east to Manbij? There’s a lot going on.
 
I agree re. the result of the missile attacks. It is likely that a few failed or were brought down.
By the way, and based purely on the number of heavy lift aircraft flying into Hmeminin (sic) in recent days, I wonder if something is being deployed to Syria in response to the attacks? Yesterday, both An124 and IL76 flew in. IL76 is routine but the An124 less so. Anyway, speculation and it could easily be an shipment of something quite mundane.
Tweeters who monitor the Bhosphorous (sic) have reported an increase in heavy lift ships heading to Tartous, including deck cargo of light sand-painted trucks, and the deployment of additional Russian Navy vessels to the Eastern Med. This chap is worth a follow: (nice photo of a Kilo class sub at Tartous in his time line)


Re. the course of the war as a whole, it seems as good as over in the West (Latakia and the North West excluded). The doubt lies in the East (SDF/Turkish FSA issues to resolve), Idlib and Erdoğan's new Ottoman Empire. Add to that Macron's new, Blair-like, interest in saving the Middle East, and talk of direct KSA involvement and I can't guess what will happen.
Purely on a hunch, I can't see Erdoğan just upping and leaving. I know there's a deal, etc but Erdoğan has invested reputation in Syria, as well as infrastructure to an extent, and Turkey has shed blood. Put another way, how will he leave and not lose some face?
The adventure in Yemen shows that KSA has rather self-defence forces at best, armed by overpriced American hardware handled by unexperienced personnel. KSA invested a lot in some rebel factions and lost the investments. Only one storage facility in Aleppo contained 2 mln. Bulgarian made shells bought by KSA (for their client rebels). I strongly doubt that KSA and other Gulfies would send troops to Syria. What if Iran in turn would send its regular regiments (whole divisions) to Syria? Under Russian air cover it would be a strong force.
Tukey is another important player. Turkey has formidable and quite able armed forces but the main objective is to remove possibility of Kurdish insurgency bases inside Syria. In this respect Erdogan has in fact parallel interests with Assad that contradicts to Washington's plans. The most realistic scenario is incorporation of Kurdish military units into SAA and wide authonomy of Kurdish areas with tough military control by central government.
As for supplies of S-300 and other sophisticated weapons systems to Assad then it is wrong idea from my point of view. Later Assad could break ties with Moscow and use his arsenal against Israel.
It is in the interests of Israel to urge Washington to forget about Syria. As a result Assad will not receive S-300, any attack missiles, new weapons.
 
It is in the interests of Israel to urge Washington to forget about Syria. As a result Assad will not receive S-300, any attack missiles, new weapons.
I disagree with that entirely. Iranian influence let alone direction and control in Syria is not in Israel’s favour at all.
 

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