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Sunday, March 11, 2018

To stop the advance of ISIS at Palmyra need by any means

The success of ISIS in the counter-offensive in the Palmyra due to the fact that the Syrian General staff had deliberately weakened this part of the front, wanting to finally deal with the jihadists in Aleppo. Indeed, at Aleppo, have success, which is significant. But the life of the Russian pilots can’t be paid for them.

In the last few days ISIS militants* continued their offensive on the positions of government troops in the desert East of Palmyra. The data series, they managed to break through the front and almost close to the Tadmor – residential part of the ancient city. Jihadists use familiar tactics: first, break through the front using blow the bombers, and then trying to capture the height, which is critical for the development of the offensive in the desert.

“Really don’t want the Russian pilots covered their bodies tactical shortcomings of very different people”

It is in this area on 8 and 9 July was used extensively as the Russian helicopters of the contingent HQs in Syria and their counterparts, directly owned by the CAA. Due to the lack of the Syrian crews prepared for the management of complex air platforms, which are export versions, Mi-25 turned modernization, at the helm of the Syrian formally technology in some cases were Russian crews. They stopped the first wave of attack ISIL at Tadmor, but unfortunately one helicopter was lost, and the crew – to Rafagat Khabibullin and Eugene Long died.

A few days later, on July 12 – at ISIS positions East of Palmyra struck high-explosive ammunition has the Russian strategic bombers Tu-22M3 taking off from aerodromes located in the territory of the Russian Federation. “As a result of the impact destroyed the large field camp of the militants, three warehouses of ammunition and weapons, three tanks, four infantry fighting vehicles, eight cars equipped with heavy machine guns and a large amount of manpower of the opponent”, – said the defense Ministry. While the Russian defense Ministry stressed that the airstrike was inflicted on the targets identified in the last few days and confirmed from multiple channels of intelligence.

The use of strategic bombers in this case should not be considered as “act of revenge” for the death of a Russian helicopter, though the temptation’s there. The position of Palmyra is really complicated, and to stop the advance of ISIL in this part of Syria is required by any means using all the tools available, including heavy bombers.

Who is friends with whom and fighting in Syria and Iraq, the Group of government troops near Palmyra has been weakened by the transfer of some parts in the neighborhood of Aleppo and in the province of Damascus. In the heart of the Syrian capital in the last few days of the CAA with the support of parts of the Hezbollah undertook a successful offensive against the remnants of the positions of al-Nusra in Eastern ghouta is suffering in the suburbs and some neighborhoods which still control a variety of jihadists, completely surrounded and deprived of their supply. Several months, government negotiators – both military and civilian – has tried to persuade certain groups to lay down their arms. With some groups succeeded, and gradually, the configuration of the front in Eastern ghouta became very confusing.

Now in a dense urban environment, from which six years of war was left mainly in ruins, there are only pockets of resistance are irreconcilable. It is noteworthy that in the beginning of the year, when the fate of the encircled became apparent that some commanders of al-Nusra in Eastern ghouta was trying to enter the negotiations with government troops, trying to get their honorary evacuation from under the Damascus. But government forces and negotiators on this kind of compromise with the “EN-Nusra” go, largely because of the reluctance to create a precedent of cooperation with those who cooperate is unacceptable. The fact that the jihadists do not have to keep this communication confidential, and Damascus was hit by a wave of criticism from the West for cooperating with the terrorists, and to contrast with the heavy fighting with Pro-American and Pro-Turkish forces, which were at the same time.

And now the General staff of the CAA somehow considered timely still to end Islamist enclaves in Eastern ghouta, weakening due to this attack and without that hanging down the front at Palmyra. In addition, permanent transfer from one front to the other several units that are considered elite, has a negative impact on combat capability as a whole. But it seems that Damascus continues to consider the future strategy of successive attacks on different fronts, even though they count on the head teshi.

At the same time, government troops has intensified in Aleppo. Quite unexpectedly, the 4th mechanized division began the offensive is already inside the city – in the quarter Fatah Halab (apparently relying on the support of the National guard and the gain also comes from the Palmyra). The government troops have entered deeper into the neighborhood of al-Laymun and besieged gas plant Sadko in the industrial zone. The infantry were able to move quickly, almost paving the way for the building of air force intelligence in the neighborhood of al-Zahra. In General, government troops in the Aleppo very quickly moving North for the second day in a row, and emphasized that such an effective offensive (which is not too characteristic of the CAA) became possible in the result of nonstop attacks by Russian videoconferencing on the position of the jihadists. Russian aircraft, and indeed literally ironed the area of the town of Kafr Hamra, which is located just to the North of the notorious al-Laramona, as well as settlements Hreytan and Qabr-al-Angles, which was founded by the crusaders.

This attack looks to be extremely meaningful and may cost to provide a temporary relief position at Palmyra, but it is a matter of perspective and theoretical concepts. The fact that a few weeks before the government army first occupied, and then held the so-called farm (farmland) Mull, who were hovering over the neighborhood of al-Laymun from the North. Now the attempt is made (again, quite successful) attack from South to North. As a result, now cut the so-called highway Costello is part of the ring road of Aleppo, the only route through which passed the supply of militants “an-Nusra” and Pro-American factions in a huge “bag” to the East and South of Aleppo. Now we can talk about partial encirclement of this group and depriving it of regular supplies. But if things go the same way, and beyond the cover of the boiler may be closed, and the battle for Aleppo will be speaking in the past tense. Huge (by local standards) group of the enemy will be completely surrounded, as happened a few months ago in Eastern ghouta.

Knowing this, the jihadists in the past three days had made several attempts a large-scale counter-attacks to retake lost positions. They again attacked the farm Mallah, but suffered heavy losses and retreated. It is noteworthy that the positions at the Mall (which is the projection of the front like the fist) was formed hastily taken from Aleppo and as if the elite “Tigers,” their defense was actively supported by the Russian aerospace forces, inflicting several blows on the road in the village Hreytan in the area Kandurata. The latter is a huge refugee camp that periodically comes information about victims of Russian air strikes. But kondratsky the refugee camp is, in fact, a fortified camp “an-Nusra” like the Palestinian camps in the Gaza strip. Government troops trying to advance in his direction, but not as rapidly.

Russian HQs several times applied and coiled parachute bombs, particularly in al-Viramune for the destruction of the tunnels jihadists and fortified positions in the basements of buildings in the industrial zone. It has been effective and much cheaper tactic than using conventional concrete-piercing bombs (like free fall and controlled). Along the way, all the same the 4th mechanized division of the CAA again with the help of Russian troops dislodged the jihadist group “Harakat Nuriddin-AZ-Zina” from the district of Beni-Zeid.

It is obvious that the attempt to break through the weakened front of the government troops at Palmyra is designed to divert forces from Aleppo where the SAA offensive looks surprisingly promising and is constantly evolving, despite the fierce resistance of the enemy. If Damascus still decided finally to concentrate on the “battle for Aleppo” and eventually to do away with this focus, he has to risk weakening the other sectors of the front. But not to the same degree! For example, with a sweep of Eastern ghouta could wait. Really don’t want the Russian pilots covered their bodies tactical flaws in other people.

* Organization in respect of which the court accepted entered into legal force decision on liquidation or ban the activities on the grounds stipulated by the Federal law “On countering extremist activity”

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