Military Events in Syria and Iraq thread #3

Discussion in 'World Events' started by Yazata, Apr 5, 2016.

  1. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    Having a look at that list on wiki unfortunately tells you very little ( if we assume for a moment that they are in any way accurate) as countries that are known to have have significant crime are listed with low incarceration rates and so on... to extrapolate the data as you have done is not advisable as it is way to general-istic.
    Also even though the wiki page has been updated Nov 2016, with out a reference date of census next to the data, the info could refer to any year....
    The question of, for example, Russia, (450) is referring to what year and month and are we talking "horses for horses" sort of issue come up.

    Also we have to realize that the reporting of figures is subject to how transparent a government is and how open the government is to criticism. Putin appears to be immune to criticism, for example, as the media is fully controlled by his government, so the figure of 450/100,000 could be dramatically under-reported. It could be almost anything and the public would be none the wiser.

    The test:
    To assess how open a government is to criticism one only has to look at the mainstream media and if no criticism is found you can bet you money that the government is censoring the media significantly.
    The Challenge:
    Show a recent history of Russian media coverage that is critical of Putin and I will retract my point.

    However your point is fairly clear that "You are critical of the Russian judicial system and have used incarceration rates as supporting evidence"

    In Australia we have an emphasis on keeping minor offenders in the community doing community service whilst attending rehabilitation courses etc. This keeps the number relatively low. ( No we don't jail people for stealing a loaf of bread even if they are convicted of the crime...)
    Perhaps a comparison list of convictions vs incarcerations might be of use...but way to laborious and heady to bother with is my guess.


    Illegal images and human trafficking:
    How ever we do jail people for encouraging the exploitation of minors and other more nasty situations through the use of illegal images taken by persons who have no empathy for the harm they are doing to the child/victim/family and ultimately the society those children grow up to participate in. To offer a deterrent to human trafficking, by making the end user responsible for some of the tragedy they are paying for and generating by their addiction.
    Organized crime:
    From what I have experienced and understand since the collapse of the Soviet Union, criminal syndication (organized crime) in Russia is systemically entrenched (as no doubt perhaps to a lesser extent it is in the USA as well). So much so that I would even suggest that a great many of those 45o/100,000 persons incarcerated in Russia, may have upset the cartels in some way and have probably been framed, blackmailed or other wise extorted.
    Using illegal imagery as an extortion tool would be as you have said, very easy and one that in most modern Western nations law enforcement are all too aware of, as police officers , politicians etc, are also subject to this potential threat of false accusation and blackmail and do the IT forensic work necessary to determine validity or not.

    Suffice to say that the threat of sophisticated "black mail" being placed upon important people such as politicians, and yes even Presidents, is highly possible and undoubtedly will occur if not already has occurred.


    Given the demonstrable degree of significant racism in parts of the USA it is a wonder that the incarceration rates are not even higher. Of the 700/100,000 you have reported as incarcerated a disproportionate and significant proportion of which would be Afro American and that if anything is very telling of the degree of racism blighting the USA, in itself.

    35% of all inmates are Afro American when they only make up 12-13% of the population generally and are over represented in the data. (2014) wiki:
    The racist derived portion could account for as many as 200 incarcerations of that 700/100,00 figure cited.
    I might add that most societies tend to regulate their citizens because the society generally seeks to improve it's circumstances in ways that go against those that wish to remain unchanged. To regulate in favor of the victim(s), to discourage negative behavior ( towards the well being of that society) and to allow society to ultimately change so that the regulation eventually becomes redundant and unnecessary.
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2016
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  3. joepistole Deacon Blues Valued Senior Member

    No you are not interested in doing it here. You are never interested in doing it. Probably because Mother Putina would take away your paycheck.

    You need to use credible sources. We have been over this before. "" isn't a credible resource. Two, you were asked to show an example of where you have been critical of your beloved Mother Russia or Mother Putina. This ain't it.

    Criticized by who? Your "criticism" of Russia, which isn't very critical, is couched in the story-line that the US is worse.

    Again, that's not what you were asked for. You weren't asked to criticize the US. You were asked for an example of something where you have been critical of Russia or Putin. You don't have it because you haven been critical of your beloved Russia or Putin. In fact you have steadfastly defended both to the point of absurdity. Comrade, you cannot be critical of your beloved Mother Russia while at the same time you are saying but the US is worse.

    And let's be honest here comrade, the pictures you are referring to are child pornography. We have had this discussion before too. You cannot understand that making child pornography profitable leads to the sexual abuse of more children. That's why those pictures are illegal.
    Quantum Quack likes this.
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  5. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Whatever, I have no reason to doubt them. It is clear that there may be countries with high crimes but low incarceration rates, because the criminals are simply not catched, this I have mentioned as a reasonable problem with some low incarceration rates in Third World countries. But Europe does not have such a problem. So, incarceration rates four to seven times higher than in Europe is a problem. Your point that Russia may lie about its incarceration rate would not change this, because a politically motivated falsification of that rate would, instead, present the it as smaller. Thus, there would be a problem in any case, with 450 or whatever higher rate.

    It is, anyway, much to high for a reasonable legal system. And therefore a point in Russia where I do not like the actual situation.
    "Путин повторяет ошибки Николая II" Putin repeats the errors of Nicolai II.
    "Напомнят ли Путину, что он отвечал три года назад?" Will somebody remember Putin mind what he has answered three years ago?
    No. You jail people for owning pictures. Or simply for downloading them. They may have really evil thought using these pictures - but once they are imprisoned for these thoughts, this is a thought crime.

    This has nothing to do with human trafficking. And not that much with exploitation of children - google for sexting. More important: Forbidding to sell and buy such porn, but allowing free distribution and ownership of such porn, would be the straightforward way to destroy such a market. Look what the music and film industry is doing against piracy. Why? Its obvious, it endangers their whole business, even if the business is completely legal. And illegal child porn market would have no chance. Moreover, what is distributed is evidence for crimes, which could be used as evidence in court against the producers. How would you name it usually if collecting evidence of crimes and distributing it is illegal? So that everybody who presents such evidence has, first of all, to admit an own serious crime? I think, such laws would be usually considered as protection measures for the mafia.
    They go to prison even if they are not paying, but simply download it for free. And even longer, if they give other addicts for free copies, even if this plausibly prevents the receivers from buying such porn at other places, or at least decreases the sales. describes such a case:
    Doesn't really sound as if it would be easy for a victim of such crimes to avoid persecution. More like "it would be nice, if attorneys would not reject it outright, because one cannot completely exclude it, but in reality ...", not? Ok, if you have $250,000 to spend for such things, this may be a solvable problem.

    And this is a problem of every country where owning pictures is a sufficiently serious crime to expect prison.
    No. Its very simple: If you have other numbers, present them. Then it makes sense to discuss and compare the reliability of the sources. Else, so what? Anyway, I have not started this issue, but was asked to present cases where I criticize something related with Russia/Putin. So, if the numbers are accurate and reliable is only my own problem. Anyway, the purpose was to illustrate only a side question, namely that 700 per 100,000 is horribly high and remembers the original gulag numbers. I criticize Russia, as it is today, for its yet very high 450 per 100,000.
    So what? I have explained why - because this is a forum full of anti-Russian propaganda, full of people who hate Russia. My criticism of Russia has the intention to improve Russia, those of the anti-Russian propagandists here has the intention to destroy it. I do not want to give them weapons in their fight against Russia, ok?

    These were two examples of things which I think are harmful for Russia, and should be changed. They have the advantage that you cannot use them in your anti-Russian propaganda, simply because the situation in the US is known to be even worse. So I can present them here, without giving Russian-hating guys ammunition in their anti-Russian informational warfare.
    I can. It's easy. Civilized countries should have incarceration rates below 100 per 100,000. Which is what many European countries have. 200 per 100,000 may be considered as high but yet acceptable, but anything greater than 400 per 100,000 is already a clear indication that the country needs a serious liberalization of its penal law. Based on this general principle, I'm critical of Russia, with 450 per 100,000, and even more critical of the world leader US, with its more than 700 per 100.000.
    And you obviously don't understand the elementary market rules, that making sales illegal, but legalizing ownership and distribution for free destroys this market. It has the ability to destroy even legal markets, ask the movie and music industry what they think about free distribution of copies of various videos by pirates. So, forbidding ownership and free distribution makes child pornography more profitable and more safe, given that their customers will not distribute for free what they have bought, and not give it to the police. So, it is you who defends measures which make child pornography profitable.
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  7. Quantum Quack Life's a tease... Valued Senior Member

    The whole issue of prohibition, censorship and regulation is a really large topic and perhaps another thread , another time..
  8. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Yes, that's off-topic here, so let's return to Syria.

    So, the big news is that Aleppo is, finally, liberated. The last terrorists have left Aleppo with the "green busses" (ok, not all busses were green) toward Idlib. And the Syrian army has cleared the remains of the terrorist-held areas after this, and officially declared the complete liberation. So the actual map of Aleppo is the following:

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    As one can see, the terrorists control yet some areas sufficiently close to Aleppo, in particular some of the suburbs of Aleppo. Maybe formally some of them are even parts of the administrative unit named "Aleppo". So, there is yet a danger of attacks of Aleppo, and, more relevant, they can yet terrorize Aleppo with various artillery. So, there is not yet complete peace in Aleppo, and there remains to do yet a lot to clear the environment of Aleppo.

    What else? A lot of fighting near Palmyra, with mainly the Daesh fighters heavily attacking a Syrian airbase nearby, fortunately without success, the reinforcements send to this front seem sufficient to halt the attacks and to do some counterattacks and to win back some of the lost positions. Similarly, heavy attack of Daesh agains Deir Ezzor, fortunately also without success. Surprisingly Daesh has also started an attack against the Kuweiris airbase - despite the nearby fighting between Daesh and the pro-turkish rebels in Al Bab. From a military point of view, this would not make sense at all. Near Raqqa, they give up around 50 villages to the Kurds, without even an attempt to defend them, and they would also need forces to defend Mossul. Instead, they make quite heavy attacks against the Syrian army, even at three different fronts. Are they stupid? I doubt. The most plausible explanation is that somebody pays them a lot of money for doing these attacks. I will not make guesses who.

    The Syrians are making progress also in East Ghouta. This makes sense from point of view of the general strategy to clear the environment of Damask from the many terrorist enclaves which have been there in the past. There are claims about preparations of a major offensive against East Ghouta, with a lot of fighters transferred from the other already liberated terrorist enclaves to East Ghouta. So, one can expect more. There has been information that some smaller enclaves have, after an ultimatum by the government, accepted proposals for a peace agreement, without even starting fighting.

    And there are claims that the terrorists plan a major attack from the North against Hama. We will see.
  9. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    The Syrian army continues to clear the environment of Damascus from various terrorist enclaves. says that an agreement based on the usual terms (amnesty for those who give away their weapons and stay, green busses to Idlib for those who prefer this) has been reached for three communes in one enclave near the Golan highs (here). Another part of this enclave has rejected, so that there will be some fight if they do not accept it during the next days.
  10. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Good news about a ceasefire agreement in Wadi Barada. This region is critical because a large part of the water supply of Damascus comes from here, and this water supply was broken. The terrorists (which according to the Syrians are mainly the renamed Al Qaida, while others claim that they are from groups which participate in the ceasefire, so that the fighting in that region was blamed to be a violation of that ceasefire), blamed Syrian aircraft for damaging the water supply, the Syrian side blames the terrorists for obstruction.

    Whatever, there was a lot of heavy fighting in this region during the last days, with small but finally obviously big enough progress of the government forces and (some claim, not sure) Hisbollah, and the ceasefire agreement seems to be along the standard lines - those who want to continue fighting go with light weapons, families and green buses to Idlib, locals can simply give away their weapons and settle their status via amnesty, and the Syrian army gets the control of the area, and in particular the water supply. So that if this works, an important problem for Damascus has been solved.

    Then about something completely different, namely a nice example of primitive Western propaganda lies: They have taken fotos from the Russian MD, from the work of and made a lot of completely stupid comments.

    The lies where so obvious that even several of the commenters have seen this. So, this foto was described as as a Russian mine:

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    Hm, with English description what it is? So, this was trivially observed in the comments:
    But at least this most obvious lie has now been corrected, what we see now under this picture is

    A mine lies hidden in a thorny bush on the dusty Aleppo ground

    So it is no longer a Russian mine.
  11. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Unfortunately, the negotiations about the terrorists leaving Wadi Barada have finally failed, and the fighting continues.
    The position of the sides are that the terrorists have agreed to stop the disruption of the water supply of Damascus only in exchange for being left in control of this possibility to blackmail. The Syrian government rejects this, and wants to stop this blackmail possibility. It makes sense, because a disruption of water supply would be much more problematic in the Summer when there is no rain than now.

    The Syrian army concentrates now some of their elite forces to solve this water supply problem in short time.
  12. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Some news from the Wadi Barada region. First, a map:

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    It shows the gains the Syrians have reached today against the terrorists. Not that it is not the size of this territory which matters, but the control over the hills in this region. Here is how some part of this valley looks like on the ground:

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    What one can see is that the Syrian army already controls (and already over a long time) the hills in the South of this valley. To control the hills of one side of the valley is, of course, already an important advantage. But it may be nonetheless not that easy to attack, if the enemy controls the hills on the other side. The situation will be quite different if one controls above sides. Which is what has been reached today. So, what has been reached today promises more during the next days.
  13. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Good news from Wadi Barada: writes that after the Syrian army has taken the village Bassima, they have been able to cut off the terrorists from the Al-Fijah Springs themselves, and after this were able to reach an agreement, so that the jihadists were allowed to withdraw from the whole area of the springs, so that the water technicians now officially entered the Al-Fijah Springs to repair the water supply for Damascus. In the following map

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    the springs are shown yet deep in the jihadist held region, so these news have to be taken with a lot of doubt. It is also completely unclear what is the real situation in Deir Qanun, there have been a lot of news about some jihadist groups in this village having given away their weapons and having got amnesty.
    There are also some claims that the terrorists have attacked the water technicians.

    Whatever, that there are some important advances is clear, in particular that Bassema has been taken.
  14. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    The ceasefire in Wadi Barada has had, if at all, only a limited success. At least some factions of the terrorists have not accepted it. Fighting continues. The Syrian army has now taken Ain al Khadra completely and attacks the remaining terrorists in Ain al Fija, the place with the Springs are.

    There is heavy fighting around Deir Ezzor. Daesh has started a heavy offensive, and made some critical gains, so that the connection between the town and the airport is endangered. The Syrian army has started a counterattack, and taken back some points, so that the road seems actually safe. But the danger remains.

    This is all a lasting consequence of the attack by the US-coalition airforce against the Syrian army, which allows Daesh to take, in the attack after this (which looked very nicely coordinated), some key hills near the airport and to endanger the airport itself.

    On the other hand, the massive attack of Daesh against Deir Ezzor was based on taking away some forces from Palmyra. This allows the Syrian army to attack on this front, and they have reached there some progress.

    Some small progress was reached in East Ghouta too. Some terrorist supply road for the village Nashabija has been cut.
  15. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    The Iraqis are announcing the capture of the eastern half of Mosul (the part east of the Tigris river). Some lower level Iraqi commanders dispute this, saying that there are a handful of districts still in ISIS hands, but predict that they will be eliminated soon. Gunfire can still be heard in some areas.

    The battle for Mosul started some three months ago and has been proceeding very slowly up until the last few days. A few days ago the Iraqis retook Mosul University (in the northeast part of the city) and ISIS resistance started to collapse. Civilians tell of ISIS fighters starting to panic.

    The next goal is to take the western half of the city, which is reportedly the older part and more densely built up. American airstrikes earlier destroyed the bridges across the Tigris so as to disrupt traffic between the two halves of the city. But the damage now serves ISIS , so if the Iraqis intend to attack from the east, pontoon bridges will have to be constructed under fire. The alternative would be for Iraqi army forces to push up overland from the south. The Iraqi commanders aren't saying what the plan is, for obvious reasons.

    Mosul is by far the largest city in ISIS' 'Caliphate' and losing it would be a huge defeat. So the Iraqis expect determined resistance. But they aren't sure what kind of ISIS forces are left on the west side of the river. Did ISIS already commit most of their fighters in east Mosul, or do they have plenty of forces left in reserve?
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2017
  16. Yazata Valued Senior Member

    I believe that ISIS has succeeded in surrounding the airport and have cut it off from the half of the town of Deir Ezzor that the Syrian army still controls and from a nearby army base southwest of the town. The town is currently being supplied by Syrian aircraft that have been flying into the airport, so losing the airport will be a major blow to their hopes of hanging onto their isolated position in Deir Ezzor. Given that ISIS doesn't take prisoners and kills captives, it's worrying.
  17. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    According to recent news, the communication line between the airport and the town is actually under control of the SAA.

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    But the situation remains certainly very critical. As far as I understand, the airport was already long ago too close to the front to be used by planes to supply the town. This has been done from planes with throwing down supports with parachutes. On the other hand, supplies with helicopters are possible even now, some reinforcements have been send yesterday to Deir Ezzor in this way, some injured fighters flown out.

    Some progress in East Ghouta, what has been reached yesterday is on the following map:

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    and today there seems to be, according to further progress, with the terrorists retreating from Hazrama and Nashabia and fire control of SAA over Nashabia.

    Progress also in the Wadi Barada region. The SAA has taken half of Ain al Fija, the place with the Springs are, but unfortunately the springs themselves are yet under terrorist control.
  18. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Nothing important seems to have happened, heavy fighting in Deir Ezzor.

    A map about some advances of the Syrian army against Daesh toward Al Bab during the last week or so:

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    Some advance against Daesh also near Palmyra, an important hill has been taken, and a crossroad.
  19. sculptor Valued Senior Member

    On Saturday evening, the Syrian Arab Army turned the tables on the Islamic State near the military airport, liberating several points at the western part of the cemetery and Panorama area of Deir Ezzor.

    Backed by nonstop Russian airstrikes, the Syrian Arab Army has been able to forestall most of the Islamic State's infiltration attempts around the military airport, despite the intensity of these attacks by the terrorist group.

    The Syrian Arab Army will need to recover the cemetery, Jirayah village, Jabal Al-'Amal, and Jabal Harabish before they can lift the siege imposed on the military airport by the Islamic State.
  20. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    The attack of the Syrian army against Daeh in the direction of Al Bab continues: During the night, Souran has been taken, and during the day several villages in the neighbourhood of Souran:

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    I think the main aim of this attack is, beyond the cleaning of the environment of Aleppo from Daesh, and making the frontline shorter (it is now already 20 km shorter than at the begin of this offensive, and may be shortened even more, a front line of 30-40 km length will be reduced to 10 km even without taking Al Bab. Another point for attacking along two big roads toward Aleppo (M4 and 212) is that one cannot be sure that nothing happens West of Aleppo - in this case, the forces could be moved to West of Aleppo really fast. West of the M4 there is a quite large region of several villages with no strategic importance for Daesh which, one can guess, will be simply given up without much fighting, similarly to those villages after Souran which have been taken today.

    Another aim is to force Daesh to put some more serious forces toward this front. Maybe from Al Bab, may be from far away, but maybe also from Deir Hafer. If Daesh would weaken Deir Hafer, this would be another interesting attack direction for the Syrian army.

    A map about the direction of the attacks against Daesh in the region of Palmyra is here:

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    So, this is more a recovery of positions South of the T-4 airbase (which is the only really important military object in the whole region - especially also because it is important for connection to Deir Ezzor). Once the main forces of Daesh have been moved to Deir Ezzor, Daesh is now much weaker in this region than at the time of their attack, so one can use this weakening to recover the lost positions.
  21. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    Then, there is really good news from Wadi Barada: A new agreement has been reached:
    If it works, the fighters with families will be driven to Idlib, those who agree to give away their weapons get amnesty and will remain, and all this within the next 24 hours.

    This would be the third or so such agreement, so it may fail again. But the reason for this agreement is, of course, the advance of the Syrian army in Ain al Fija. Today they seem to have taken the mosque in this village. So, even if this fails again, there is hope that the water crisis of Damascus will soon be settled.

    In Deir Ezzor, there are good news. One heavy attack of Daesh near the Panorama has been repelled. And near the cemetery the SAA has taken some important hills.

    Contradicting rumors about heavy reinforcements for Daesh or from Raqqa, or from Mossul with US allowing it, but, on the other hand, of foreign fighters taken away from Deir Ezzor, leaving there only locals. I would not take all this seriously. The one thing which seems sure is that Daesh has paid for all these advances during their offensive in Deir Ezzor with very heavy losses. So, if Deir Ezzor survives this, it will be a big success in itself.
  22. sculptor Valued Senior Member

    I have read of US allowing Daesh to escape to Syria. If true, One wonders: WHY?
  23. Schmelzer Valued Senior Member

    The problem is that there are different factions in the US. Roughly the Globalists/CIA/Clinton, which use terrorists for regime change, and the America first/Trump/Army which are ready to fight terrorism and stop all this terrorist regime change business. But, instead, have a big and strong army at home. This pro-terrorist part wants to use Daesh as good as possible, and, once Trump will anyway finish it, they use them to create maximal harm to Assad (and therefore the Russians).

    So, in principle all these rumors make sense. Imagine you would be the Daesh leader - you are under attack in Al Bab, Mossul, and Raqqa, but what you do, instead? Attack completely unprovoked Palmyra and Deir Ezzor. This does not make sense from a military point of view. Except that there is somebody behind, who pays a lot, or has some other power over Daesh, to motivate them to do this.

    Anyway, I do not give all such rumors, and such speculations about the reasons, any trust. It makes sense to hear them, to think if they make sense or not, but not more.

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