Warning: Graphic footage. Little is
known about the origins of the Abkhazian Network News Agency
, ANNA. What we do know is that the agency, nominally from the breakaway Georgian republic Abkhazia
, has been covering the brutal Syrian Civil War
while embedded with the SAA
on its Youtube channel
(be sure to enable English captions). Defiant and unapologetic about its pro-government position, the videos nevertheless provide a unique perspective on what is perhaps the most well-documented war in history. Brief sample: GoPros mounted on tanks
, civilian traffic driving by tanks
, near misses
, and close quarters combat
. Sometimes the other side is taking a video too
] [more inside]
from the Syrian civil war are being treated
in Israeli hospitals, some of them with referrals
from Syrian doctors. The identities of the patients and the route they have taken is being kept secret for fear of repercussions from authorities in Syria, which is formally at war with Israel. [more inside]
"The arms manufacturers of Aleppo used to be ordinary men—network administrators, housepainters, professors. Then came the bloody Syrian crisis. Now they must use all their desperate creativity to supply their fellow rebels with the machinery of death." [Via]
Shooting The Messengers
So, what guides a journalist's decisions in these unlovely places? The frequently repeated maxim that "no story is worth dying for" rings a little hollow. The awkward truth is that, in this field, personal bravery is simultaneously discouraged and rewarded. [more inside]
Syria Options Go From Bad To Worse
As reports have surfaced of possible use of sarin gas in the Syrian civil war, calls by long-time proponents of U.S. intervention on behalf of the anti-Assad rebels have grown to a fever pitch. These same voices, both at home and abroad, have evoked the administration’s previously stated “red line” on use of chemical weapons. But even assuming that reports of WMD usage in Syria turn out to be true, the Obama Administration’s position may be far more nuanced than previously thought. [more inside]
Frontline journalist Olly Lambert captures the event of a Syrian government air strike on the town of al-Bara.
Powerfully upsetting and tragic, his footage conveys the sheer terror afflicting the lives of Syrian refugees struggling to survive under the Assad regime. [36min SLYT] [more inside]
proliferation in Syria
has become something to watch. [more inside]
"What is currently happening in Manbij, once a sleepy provincial city in northern Syria, is the first future-oriented experiment in the midst of horror. "
In the Syrian city of Manbij, the first larger city to be liberated by rebel forces, residents have been left with the task of governing amidst Syrian forces' daily attempts to destroy schools, hospitals, access to clean water and other infrastructure using air strikes.
Life and death in Aleppo.
GlobalPost correspondent Tracey Shelton
was filming a feature on the daily life
of Syrian opposition fighters when a mundane chore for the men turned into a bloodbath... (Warning: Graphic.) [more inside]
Watching Syria's War [Caution: war]
. The New York Times is posting video coming out of the Syrian Civil War with context and background: Street Fighting in Allepo
), Crusader Castle Becomes Rebel Redoubt
), Tank Stalking
, Harrowing ride through the streets of Homs
. The online video has "allowed the war to be documented like no other", according to the Times, presumably because of the ubiquity of video cameras among the fighters and access to the Internet.
"The war has uprooted 4.7 million people from their homes. So where are they?"
With the election of Obama and the economic crisis, the topic of Iraq has fallen by the wayside. As hard as things may be right now, Iraqis
have been going through far worse for years now. If you're curious about what they have to say
, hear them tell it in their own words. Iraqi Refugee Stories. [more inside]
Forty years on.
After a quick buildup
, the Six Day War
started 40 years ago today and reshaped the Middle East
. At the time,
Israel's quick win looked like a triumph, but after 40 years the war is still being fought
and it looks
like it may have been a pyrrhic victory
22 basic suggested readings on the Middle East
from history professor and informed commenter on Middle Eastern affairs Juan Cole
In this episode of the George & Tony Show
the President and the Prime Minister are in Russia eating brie, discussing geopolitics, leaving their mics open
, and whatnot.
US-Made Suicide Bombs
- These are by US military, law enforcement agencies or commercial security firms - whether for training or marketing or spooking the public
The Salvador Option
--sending Special Forces teams to advise, support and possibly train Iraqi squads, to target Sunni insurgents and their sympathizers, even across the border into Syria, in imitation of our actions in El Salvador. It remains unclear, however, whether this would be a policy of assassination or so-called "snatch" operations, in which the targets are sent to secret facilities for interrogation.
including this: In Iraq, in fact, as in many other places where the United States has tried to train ethical armies to fight dirty wars, the Iraqi troops are tacitly expected to do what American troops won’t. A fundamental purpose of the upcoming elections on January 30 is to create democratic legitimacy for whatever extreme measures the newly organized military decides to take.
No war in Syria?
It appears not, as the US president has blocked the Pentagon from making preparations for an invasion. Is this for real, or is it merely a ploy to sway international opinion?
Middle East war predictions
"..what we are witnessing looks like joint preparations by the Palestinian Authority, Syria, its Lebanese client, Iraq, and Iran, for war on a regional scale, against both Israel and U.S. interests. I fear we may face a major, sudden, external assault on Israel, meant to precede U.S. action against the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq, and indeed prevent the U.S. from going there by enmiring it in the defence of Israel. [From The Ottowa Citizen, lead link in today's Wall Street Journal Best of the Web]
Bush wants military aid for Syria and Iran
So what if both nations on the American terrorist list (previous to recent attack on us). I just returned my army (old) uniform back to the closet. I won't go.