When the Islamic State group swept through Iraq and Syria, and the scale of its barbarism became apparent, the terror group became the most discussed story in the world. Continue reading
We know what it means by now.
The first shots have been fired – or rather, the first bombs have been dropped – of a new offensive in Syria’s civil conflict. Continue reading
With the fall of Daraa and the end of rebel rule in Syria’s southwest, observers are beginning to talk more definitely about the conclusion of the country’s civil war. Advocates of the regime of Bashar al-Assad have claimed the conflict was close to ending consistently.
The Islamic State (ISIS) is not defeated but it is diminished. The fates of those who fought and are fighting for ISIS similarly exist in two states. Continue reading
The liberation of Raqqa by the fighters of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by the military power of the Global Coalition confronting the Islamic State group (IS), was never going to be easy. Continue reading
The regime of Bashar al-Assad in Syria has made dispossession and depopulation potent weapons. The regime’s war effort is a series of encirclements, sieges and surrenders.
As loyalist forces overcome enclaves of opposition, non-combatants are encouraged or induced to flee. Those who remain after defenders capitulated face movement of another kind: They are bussed cross-country to areas outside the regime’s control. Continue reading
Before the chlorine came the bombs. And before the bombs came the siege. Douma, the largest settlement in in eastern Ghouta, part of the surrounds of the Syrian capital, Damascus, had suffered greatly in the country’s civil war, which is in its eighth year.
Along with the rest of eastern Ghouta, Douma had been under siege for more than five years, its population cut off, unable to access medical supplies and food, unable to leave the area. For years, an outpost of opposition had remained a few miles from the seat of authority in Damascus, a reminder of the limits of the power of the regime of Bashar al-Assad, the hereditary president. Continue reading