Die folgenden Nachrichten wurden im Januar 2018 vom DTF erfasst und oft zusammenfassend übersetzt.
Das Todesteam wurde von der Gefängnisverwaltung gegründet
Unter diesem Titel berichtete das Internetportal ArtiGercek am 2. Januar 2018 über den Fall des am 1. Januar 2017 im L-Typ-Gefängnis Kepsut (Provinz Balikesir) von 8 Mitgefangenen gefolterten und ermordeten Ulaş Yurdakul. Sein Rechtsanwalt Hakan Günaslan hat berichtet, dass Ulaş Yurdakul ständig von seinen Mitgefangenen geschlagen wurde, die Gefängnisverwaltung habe davon gewusst. Es sei paradox, wenn bei einer 24-stüdigen Beobachtung durch eine Kamera dies nicht gesehen würde. Ulaş Yurdakul habe ständig Verletzungen gehabt, die bei den täglichen Zählappellen hätten gesehen werden mussten. Die Gefängnisverwaltung habe jedoch nichts unternommen.
MESOP INTEL BACKGROUNDER : Spotlight on Global Jihad (April 18-25, 2018) – By The Meir Amit Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center
- The main event of the week was the expansion of the Syrian regime’s control over the Damascus region. On April 19, 2018, the Syrian army and the forces supporting it launched a campaign to take over the southern neighborhoods of Damascus, which are under ISIS’s control. After a preliminary airstrike and artillery fire, the Syrian forces launched a ground attack whose center of gravity is apparently the northern part of the Yarmouk refugee camp. In addition, following the takeover of eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army expanded its control (without any significant resistance) to the eastern Al-Qalamoun ridge northeast of Damascus. The Army of Islam (Jaysh Al-Islam), which was deployed in the area, preferred to evacuate to the north without a battle, handing over large quantities of weapons (including tanks) to the Syrian army.
The campaign to take over the southern suburbs of Damascus – Overview
MESOP NEWS FULL & &DETAILED REPORT AL GHOUTA UPDATE – After taking control of eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army launched a campaign to take over the southern suburbs of Damascus from ISIS. The takeover of these suburbs will continue to consolidate the Assad regime’s control of the Damascus region
- ISIS had prepared for the attack, estimating that at the end of the battle in eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army would launch a campaign to take over southern Damascus. ISIS’s preparations for the campaign included: expanding the areas under its control (taking over the Al-Qadam neighborhood west of the Yarmouk refugee camp); fortification (digging trenches, revetting positions and digging tunnels); and (unsuccessful) attempts to join forces with other rebel organizations operating in the area (the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham and the Free Syrian Army refused, apparently preferring to make their own arrangements for evacuation with the Syrian regime).
- Concurrently with the preparations for the attack, ISIS negotiated with the Syrian regime to reach an evacuation agreement, being aware that it is at a disadvantage vis-à-vis the Syrian army in the southern neighborhoods of Damascus. During the negotiations, it was proposed to evacuate the ISIS operatives to the Bir Qassab area in the Syrian Desert (east of Damascus) and later to the Yarmouk Basin in the southern Syrian Golan Heights (an area controlled by the ISIS-affiliated Khaled bin al-Walid Army). Following the failure of the negotiations, the Syrian regime gave ISIS 48 hours to leave the area south of Damascus for the Yarmouk Basin. At the end of this period, ISIS was given a further extension of 24 hours. When no agreement was reached, the Syrian army mounted an offensive.
- The southern neighborhoods of Damascus, mainly the Yarmouk refugee camp and the Al-Hajar al-Aswad neighborhood to its south, have been under the control of ISIS for the past two years. ISIS’s forces in the area include between 2,000 and 4,000 operatives subordinate to its Damascus Province. ISIS’s success in establishing itself in the southern neighborhoods of Damascus compromised the governance of the Assad regime and the connection between the Syrian capital and southern Syria. The takeover of ISIS’s enclave by the Syrian army would constitute another severe blow to ISIS while at the same time completing the establishment of the Syrian regime in the Damascus area. This would also place the Syrian regime in an improved starting point for the takeover of the area of Daraa and the Syrian Golan Heights and the Idlib area, the two key areas that are still controlled by the rebel organizations.
The establishment of ISIS in the southern neighborhoods of Damascus over the past two years
- Six months after the collapse of the Islamic State (early November 2017), ISIS’s presence and operational activity in Syria are concentrated in three areas. The most prominent of these is the lower Euphrates Valley and the deserts to the north and west of it, especially the area between Albukamal and Al-Mayadeen. ISIS also controls an enclave in the Yarmouk Basin in the southern Syrian Golan Heights (the Khaled bin al-Walid Army) and the area of the Yarmouk refugee camp and the surrounding neighborhoods south of Damascus. Unlike the Euphrates Valley, where ISIS enjoys considerable freedom of movement, the ISIS enclaves in the Yarmouk Basin and south of Damascus are surrounded by rival rebel organizations and by the Syrian army and forces loyal to it, and are at a disadvantage.
- Since the spring of 2015, ISIS has managed to establish its control over the southern outskirts of Damascus: large parts of the Yarmouk refugee camp; the Al-Hajar al-Aswad neighborhood; most of the Al-Qadam neighborhood (which was taken over by ISIS during the Syrian army’s campaign to take over eastern Al-Ghouta); and the Al-Tadamon and Al-Qadam neighborhoods. In addition, the Al-Zayn neighborhood, south of the Al-Qadam neighborhood, is a friction zone between ISIS operatives and operatives of the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham. In these neighborhoods, there is also a presence of other rebel organizations, including the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham (whose operatives are located in the northwest of the Yarmouk refugee camp and in several other neighborhoods), but ISIS is the most prominent. According to the Syrian and Arab media, ISIS has a few thousand operatives (between 2,000 and 4,000) in the neighborhoods south of Damascus. These operatives are subordinate to ISIS’s Damascus Province.
The areas under ISIS’s control in the Yarmouk refugee camp (in the center) and in the surrounding neighborhoods, as reported by ISIS’s Amaq News Agency (Akhbar al-Muslimeen, March 20, 2018)
Preparations by ISIS and the Syrian army for the campaign over southern Damascus
- In the ITIC’s assessment, ISIS believed that after the takeover of eastern Al-Ghouta by the Syrian army, its enclave in southern Damascus could be next. Therefore, ISIS took a series of military and political steps in preparation for the expected attack:
- Expansion of the control area: ISIS took advantage of the Syrian army’s preoccupation with subjugating the rebel organizations in east Damascus to expand its area of control south of Damascus. In this context, it managed to take over the Al-Qadam neighborhood (west of the Yarmouk refugee camp) from the Syrian army.
Right: ISIS operatives in the Al-Qadam neighborhood after it was taken over from the Syrian Army. Left: Syrian army tank destroyed by ISIS operatives in the Al-Qadam neighborhood (Akhbar al-Muslimeen, March 17, 2018).
- Entrenchment: ISIS operatives dug trenches and tunnels in areas under their control (including the Yarmouk refugee camp and the Al-Qadam neighborhood). The purpose was to protect themselves against the expected airstrikes and to facilitate the movement of ISIS operatives from place to place.
Right: ISIS operatives digging a trench in the Al-Qadam neighborhood (ISIS’s Damascus Province as quoted on the “Al-Yarmouk Camp in Our Hearts” Facebook page, April 7, 2018). Left: ISIS operative armed with a Kalashnikov assault rifle manning a fortified position in the Al-Qadam neighborhood (Nasher, April 7, 2018).
- Unsuccessful attempts to recruit allies: When the signs of preparations by the Syrian army for the campaign over south Damascus increased, ISIS proposed to the other rebel organizations to cooperate with it against the Syrian army but met with a refusal. The rival jihadi organization, the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham, apparently preferred to try to rescue its operatives by means of an evacuation arrangement with the Syrian regime (so far without success). Another rebel organization, the Free Syrian Army, evacuated a force called Jaysh al-Ababil to southern Syria following an agreement reached with the Syrian regime. On April 7, 2018, about 1,500 armed operatives were evacuated to an area some 40 km north of Daraa, where they joined the rebel groups encircling the ISIS enclave in the Yarmouk Basin (Butulat Al-Jaysh Al-Suri, April 8, 2018).ISIS’s negotiations with the Syrian regime to reach an evacuation agreement: Aware of its basic inferiority vis-à-vis the Syrian army and its allies south of Damascus, ISIS began negotiations to reach an evacuation agreement similar to the arrangements reached with the other rebel organizations in eastern Al-Ghouta. Initially, negotiations were held regarding the transfer of ISIS operatives to the area of Bir Qassab in the Syrian desert (east of Damascus), where it will be easy for them to join forces with the operatives in the Euphrates Valley. Subsequently, Syrian and Arab media reported on negotiations for the transferring of ISIS operatives to the Yarmouk Basin in the southern Syrian Golan Heights (the area controlled by the Khaled bin al-Walid Army). When the negotiations for an evacuation agreement did not produce results, the Syrian army mounted an offensive.
The Syrian army
- During the first half of April 2018, in advance of the complete takeover of eastern Al-Ghouta, the Syrian army began to transfer reinforcements to areas adjacent to ISIS-controlled territories. The reinforcements included Syrian army forces as well as Palestinian military and militia forces fighting alongside the Syrian army: the Al-Quds Brigade, the Palestinian Liberation Army (PLA), and other Palestinian militias (Zaman Al-Wasl, April 7, 2018). As part of the preparations, a Russian delegation visited sites bordering on ISIS’s control area in south Damascus, in order to get to know the front lines with ISIS and assess the situation (Secrets of the Yarmouk Camp Facebook page, March 31, 2018).
Reinforcements of the Syrian army and the forces supporting it heading to the Yarmouk refugee camp and the Al-Qadam neighborhood (Butulat Al-Jaysh Al-Suri, YouTube, April 12, 2018)
- As preparations for the attack were completed and negotiations for an evacuation agreement with ISIS did not produce any results, the Syrian army launched a campaign to liberate the neighborhoods of south Damascus from the hands of ISIS. This new campaign was announced on April 19, 2018, by the Syrian army Information Department. The campaign was begun on April 19, 2018, by artillery fire and airstrikes at ISIS targets in the Yarmouk refugee camp and the Al-Hajar Al-Aswad neighborhood (the two key neighborhoods in the areas held by ISIS).
- The targets attacked included headquarters, outposts, weapons and supply lines. In addition, targets of the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham were also attacked in those two neighborhoods. The airstrikes were followed by a ground attack. The main sites of the attack were apparently the northwestern part of the Yarmouk refugee camp, the Al-Qadam and Al-Tadamon neighborhoods. The Palestinian Al-Quds Brigade reportedly also takes part in the battles, as well as a force from Ahmad Jibril’s organization.
The demographic aspect: The Palestinian population in the Yarmouk refugee camp
- The main site held by ISIS in the Damascus southern enclave is the Palestinian Yarmouk refugee camp, which until the outbreak of the civil war was the largest refugee camp in Syria (and a center of the Palestinian terrorist organizations). The scenes of devastation and the fate of the Palestinians, most of whom fled the camp, are expected to receive high-profile media coverage due to the sensitivity of the Palestinian issue. It seems that the Syrian regime is well aware of that and is preparing to address the issue.
- During the civil war, residents of the Yarmouk refugee camp fled from it en masse. In the beginning of the war, there were about 160,000 residents in the camp (according to UNRWA), but because of the fighting and the devastation, almost all of the residents left. Today, only about 6,000 Palestinians and Syrian citizens suffering from dire humanitarian conditions are present in the camp. A question which remains unanswered is whether after ISIS is removed, the Assad regime will agree to the return of the Palestinian residents, at least some of whom are considered unreliable.
- It seems that, in order to ward off future criticism, the Syrian regime emphasizes the role played by Palestinian military forces and militias in the takeover of the camp (the Al-Quds Brigade, the Palestinian Liberation Army, Ahmad Jibril’s organization, and additional Palestinian militias). In addition, the Syrian regime began to prepare for addressing the issue of the Palestinian population. In relation to this, it was reported that the regime had appointed Mohammad Sa’id, commander of the Al-Quds Brigade (the most significant Palestinian military force supporting the regime), as the person in charge of taking care of the Palestinian refugees in south Damascus (ivansidorenko1@ Twitter account).
 In addition, ISIS forces are also present elsewhere in Syria, such as in the Idlib area, but they do not constitute a significant force and are at a disadvantage vis-à-vis other rebel organizations, primarily the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham (formerly the Al-Nusra Front). The area of the Yarmouk refugee camp in southern Damascus and the Yarmouk Basin in the southern Syrian Golan Heights are the only places where ISIS controls territory where it manages the daily lives of the (remaining) residents and constitutes the central authority. ↑
 “The Army of Bird Flocks,” a phrase taken from a chapter in the Quran. ↑
 On the other hand, it appears that the evacuation of ISIS operatives to the Idlib area, where most of the rebels from eastern Al-Ghouta were evacuated, is unacceptable to ISIS because it would place it under the threat of the Headquarters for the Liberation of Al-Sham (which is the dominant force in that region). ↑
 For information on the Palestinian forces fighting alongside the Syrian forces, see the ITIC’s Information Bulletin from March 19, 2018: “Armed Palestinian forces, militias and organizations handled by the Syrian regime in the Syrian civil war.” ↑
Mohanad Hage Ali – Russian ‘soft power’ has been expanding in Lebanon, and a number of recent developments prove it. April 25, 2018- Carnegie Center for Middle East
In March, the Lebanese government was expected to approve a Lebanese-Russian military cooperation agreement. However, at the last minute Western diplomatic pressure, particularly by the United States, forced Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri, an ally of Washington and the European Union, to postpone the deal. However, the whole episode lifted the veil on growing Russian influence in Lebanon.
MESOPOTAMIA NEWS BACKGROUNDER : DAS KURDISCHE ÖL DIENTE DEM MÖRDERISCHEN ASSAD REGIME IN SYRIEN / PKK – PYD (YPG)
- Hêvîdar Dalînî an Azadiyakurdistan – Forum
25 April 2018 – Ich finde die Doppelmoral unserer Kurden sehr amüsant. Die böse böse KRG, die korrupt sind und auf der anderen Seite die ach so revolutionäre und demokratische PYD Verwaltung in „Nordsyrien“.
Wo fließen die 14 mrd Dollar hin, wenn die Kurden in Qamişlo, Dêrik und Hesekê etc im Winter nicht mal vernünftige Heizanlagen besitzen? Warum wird das nicht so betont, wie wenn’s von der KRG kommen würde?
Warum zeigt man mit dem Finger auf andere, während man nicht besser ist?
Die KRG verhaftet zum Teil Oppositionelle, macht es die PYD etwa nicht?
In KRG gibt es verschiedenen Parteien wie PUK, Goran etc. in Nordsyrien herrscht Einparteienherrschaft. Ich denke es gibt schon so einige die es nicht möchten und mit anderen Parteien dort sympathisieren, dieses wird aber verwehrt.Ich wäre froh, wenn die Kurden die so verkrampft an ihrer Partei halten, mal diese Brille abnehmen und der Realität ins Auge schauen. Weder die PDK ist sündenfrei, noch die PYD.
- Azad Efrîn
Das kurdische Erdöl wurde nach 2012 weiterhin an das Regime gegeben. Woher hat die Armee und die ganzen Panzern und Flugzeuge sonst Treibstoff. Eine Raffinerie gibt es in Syrien nur in Homs unter Assad Kontrolle. Rest sind primitive Raffinerien die nur wenig produzieren können Im Vergleich zu enormen Massen an Konsumenten. Es gibt Dokumente worin steht, dass das Regime einverstanden ist dass die PKK die Erdöl Anlagen beschützt. Da die Assad Armee woanders Personal gebraucht hat ab Beginn der Demonstrationen und später Bürgerkrieg.
Es gab Einnahmen für die PYD-Verwaltung aus dem Erdöl aber nicht so viel wie vorher beim Regime, weil wie gesagt sie abgeben mussten. Es gab und gibt auch andere Einnahmen für Steuern und Grenzkontrollen. Die Verwaltung zahlt aber auch Löhne an den eigenen Mitgliedern und auch YPG und Rekruten.
Was Korruption betrifft, denke ich, dass in Rojava weniger einzelne Personen und Familien sich bereichert haben als in Başûr. In Rojava ist die Bereicherung wenn dann auf eine Partei fokussiert, aber auch noch nicht übertrieben wie in Başûr, da es noch neu ist.
Kritik gegenüber PYD findest du übrigens auch in der Gruppe, vor allem was das monopole einparteiische System und Parteifaschistische Politik und Repressionen an andersdenkenden etc. betrifft.
Die kurdische Politiklandschaft ist bunt, deswegen ist es auch wichtig im Kopf auch offen damit umzugehen und nicht eingeschränkt und engstirnig zu seien.
Mehr via www.mesop.de
MESOPOTAMIA NEWS TODAYS OPINION : BEYOND ‘MOWING THE GRASS’: U.S. & ISRAELI STRATEGY IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Featuring Chuck Freilich and James F. Jeffrey – Policy Forum Report -April 24, 2018
Two former policymakers discuss whether the longtime allies can move beyond tactical responses to their strategic challenges in the region.
On April 18, Chuck Freilich and James Jeffrey addressed a Policy Forum at The Washington Institute. Freilich is a senior fellow in the Belfer Center’s International Security Program and a former Israeli deputy national security advisor. Jeffrey is the Institute’s Philip Solondz Distinguished Fellow and a former deputy national security advisor in the George W. Bush administration. The following is a rapporteur’s summary of their remarks.
Israel to reopen migrant prisons after admitting deportation plan failed
MK Shelly Yacimovich said that the state’s announcement is “a welcome step that will save Israel from committing a serious and harmful act.”
By Tamar Ben-Ozer, Michael Wilner – JERUSALEM POST – April 24, 2018 19:00 – Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Interior Minister Arye Deri agreed Tuesday that preparations for the reopening of detention seekers for asylum seekers will begin immediately. The two also stated that they will continue pushing for the Knesset’s override clause to be passed, thus enabling the government to overrule decisions regarding these matters made by the High Court.On Tuesday, Israel announced that it will not be deporting asylum seekers to third-party countries in a document addressing the High Court. “It is no longer on the agenda,” the document read.
Mithin wäre allgemeine, ohnehin fortschreitende männliche Kastration die Lösung. www.mesop.de
(Mehr Selektion schon während der Schwangerschaft oder am besten gleich in vitrio?)