Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #SDF

Most recents (24)

Thread: 1 June 2022: Day 98 of #Russia's invasion of #Ukraine
Kalush Orchestra, the rap-folk band that won Eurovision for #Ukraine, has sold the Eurovision trophy at auction for $900,000 in order to buy drones (the PD-2 unmanned aerial system) for the country's war effort against the #Russian invaders.…
Vladimir Shamanov on the "superiority" of #Russia's army; intentions with Poland, Baltics, Romania; taking 5 to 10 years to fully demilitarized and denazify #Ukraine, leveling the country if need be and trying its officials and journalists at a "Nuremberg"
Read 66 tweets
NEW: NO US troops fighting in #Ukraine but there is a defense attaché - a colonel - at @USEmbassyKyiv,
per @PentagonPresSec

Kirby adds, "US troops will not be fighting in this war in #Ukraine" and that @StateDept has not changed its position regarding not having military guards
#Turkey pledge to expand buffer zones in northern #Syria - "We're obviously very concerned" per @PentagonPresSec

Points to risk to civilians and to anti-ISIS operations by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (#SDF)
"We are in daily contact with our #SDF partners in northern #Syria" per @PentagonPresSec

Adds #ISIS while diminished "remains a viable threat"
Read 5 tweets
[Thread] about the organization of sinister reputation known as #PKK. Image
The #PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) as well as its sister organizations TAK (Kurdistan Freedom Falcons) and HPG improperly called "Kurdish" are terrorist organizations recognized as such by Turkey, the EU […], the USA […], __>
Read 83 tweets
When the #SDF liberated Raqqa, the shaping was done largely with US air power. When it came to hunting #Daesh in the dense city, @USMC M777 gun crews provided the fire support. Russians in #Donetsk & #Kherson are about to enter hell. Round-the-clock, brutal and terrifying.
With counter-battery radars, the Ukrainian gunners can immediately hit any Russian artillery that fires. RF rocket and gun crews will be wiped out unless they simply refuse orders to fire. In the first Russian invasion the cowardly Russian gunners fired from amid civilian homes
in Donetsk and the Ukrainians did not return fire for fear of killing civilians. But with the accurate US artillery rounds they can put the shot right on the Russian artillery. Civilians in Donetsk & Kherson should run if there is a Russian gun or rocket system nearby.
Read 3 tweets
Leader in the Syrian Democratic Forces (#SDF), Nowruz Ahmed: "The Turkish occupation is seeking to launch new attacks against all components of the region, and our forces are ready for any scheme that threatens the region."
Nowruz Ahmed: Turkish occupation has escalated its ground and air attacks on the areas of NES, especially on the seam areas such as Zerkan, Tal Tamr and al-Shahba.
Nowruz Ahmed: The Turkish state bombs on a daily basis the villages and towns on the lines of contact and continues its attacks on a daily basis, taking advantage of the Russian-Ukrainian situation, and is targeting the area through Drones.
Read 15 tweets
1. I reported on the first Russo-Ukrainian war starting with the Maidan Jan 2014. After Merkel & Macron's Minsk I and II, I focused on Syria in a belief that ISIS was a Russian and Iranian operation to destroy Syrian Sunnis political unity. I worked to arm and assist the Kurds.
2. The force grew and establishment of the #SDF brought #Sunni #Arabs, #Christians & #Turkmen to join a single umbrella force with US airpower taking back large parts of #Syria. They still hold it much of it but #Putin gave large parts to #Erdogan who folded in ISIS & Al-#Qaeda
3. and along with #Russia, #Turkey, #Iran and #Assad act as a sort of overwatch. With US SOF and Bradleys from the 4th ID there as democracy's last hope.

When the Battle for Raqqa started in 2017, I observed ISIS military leadership made up of mostly Chechens started to leave.
Read 10 tweets
#Putin's invasion of #Ukraine has thrown a spanner into the #Russia-#Turkey relationship.

That offers the U.S. (& NATO) an opportunity to explore avenues for improving ties with #Ankara -- far from straightforward, but it's an opening.

For #Syria policy, this could be vital.
War in #Ukraine will have extremely negative impact on the humanitarian situation in #Syria -- and #Russia is now more likely than ever to veto cross-border aid access in July.

Any alternative plans will be dead in the water, without #Turkey playing a central role. We need that.
The #Biden admin appears to already be preparing for a possible severing of X-border aid access -- in part by seeking to provide a full sanctions waiver to NE & NW #Syria.

But we'll also need a massive #Turkey-based aid effort to fill [some of] the gap resulting from a UN veto.
Read 4 tweets
700 boys, 12-16yrs old, remain in an #SDF prison in NE #Syria -- held without trial since 2019 & largely hidden from monitors since.

@UNICEF images saw them "sitting barefoot on a broken concrete & dirt floor," some with blankets over their shoulders.…
After international outcry at 700+ boys aged 10-16 being held alongside #ISIS fighters in a makeshift #SDF prison (after being judged security threats by the #SDF), the #SDF turns its ire on… @UNICEF.

Not a good look, honestly.
@UNICEF As I've said many times, the ultimate blame for the #ISIS detainee/camps crisis lies with the international community -- no doubt about it.

But the #SDF have a role to play in this dynamic & they've made decisions, implemented policies & concealed things -- and that's on them.
Read 7 tweets
#ISIS's choice of NW #Idlib as a hiding point for leaders raises complex analytical Qs.

What it does not suggest, is that #Idlib's de facto governing actor, #HTS, is in some way complicit in harboring #ISIS. That's simply factually illogical, given years of open hostility.
#HTS has conducted 100+ deadly raids targeting #ISIS cells in #Idlib since mid-2017 -- & is similarly hostile to #AlQaeda too, having wiped out AQ's operational presence in #Idlib 18 months ago.

Like all non-state actors, #HTS's capacity to know everything is distinctly limited.
Just like the #SDF missed 200-300 #ISIS militants & x2 SVBIEDs crossing 12 of their own checkpoints into #Hasakeh city & al-Sina Prison, #HTS missed a man & his family living in one level of a 3-storey building near #Atmeh -- an area flooded with transitory IDPs communities.
Read 13 tweets
Happening now: @POTUS talks about operation that led to the death of #ISIS leader Amir Muhammad Sa'id Abdal-Rahman al-Mawla, aka Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi and as Hajji ‘Abdallah

Says al-Malwa "responsible for the recent brutal attack on a prison in northeast #Syria"
.@POTUS says #ISIS leader al-Malwa "chose to blow himself a final act of cowardice...just like his predecessor did"
.@POTUS says operation was aided by #SDF and US intel
Read 13 tweets
Something big is going down in NW #Syria -- (a) U.S. helicopter gunships firing on a target in the #Jinderes area of #Afrin & (b) a possible SOF raid targeting Tauqir Sharif, a [former] #UK citizen in the Atmeh area of #Idlib.

Personally, I'd be amazed if such an operation was launched at Tauqir Sharif (Abu Hossam al-Britani) -- while his #UK citizenship was revoked, the cause for doing so never seemed more than tenuous.
The house in the #Atmeh area has reportedly been surrounded by [alleged U.S.] SOF -- a loudspeaker just ordered the building to be emptied.

My guess: it's a senior #AlQaeda (Huras al-Din) figure -- HaD seniors are known to hide in the Atmeh area.
Read 41 tweets
Tensions rapidly escalating between the #SDF & #Turkey.

- Overnight #TSK strikes on #PKK in #Iraq & NE #Syria, killed combatant & civilians.

= #SDF shelling barrage killed 9 civilians & wounded 30 in al-Bab this AM.

= SNA retaliatory shelling

= #SDF accusing US of complicity.
The U.S. considers the #PKK a designated terrorist organization and *does* share intelligence & coordinate with #Turkey on countering the #PKK -- in #Syria, #Iraq & #Turkey.

As a member of the #PKK network, that places the #SDF in a very awkward place -- and @CJTFOIR too.
@CJTFOIR The #SDF's decision to shell from NE #Syria cross-border into #Turkey today -- targeting #Cizre was a serious escalation.

One #TSK soldier was killed in that attack -- and #Ankara has long determined cross-border attacks to be a thick red line.

Escalatory spiral well underway.
Read 5 tweets
NEW: #Russia adding to combat capabilities but also "sustainment & logistics" to forces surrounding #Ukraine, per @PentagonPresSec "That includes field hospitals & doctors & nurses"

"[Putin] has enough capability to move now if he wants to...he could move imminently" per Kirby
With #Russia|n naval movements, "We would not characterize what we're seeing as deescalatory" per @PentagonPresSec
"It should be up to #Ukraine who they associate with"
per @PentagonPresSec

"It's not something that Mr, #Putin gets to have a veto on. It doesn't work like that" he adds about Ukraine-@NATO relationship
Read 7 tweets
#ISIS #SDF #HASAKA #Syria #USA #Ghweran
Insight about the ISIS Ghweran prison break:
On January 20, 2022, ISIS launched a large-scale military operation, in terms of chosen target and the size of participating fighters, to liberate its members who were detained in Al-Sina’a Prison in the Ghweran neighborhood, south of Al-Hasakah city.
This operation is considered the most intense of its kind since the collapse of the group in Syria three years ago by coalition forces and the SDF, as the operation lasted for 7 days and resulted in many causalities.
Read 56 tweets
NEW: Pentagon taking steps to heighten readiness over #Ukraine - inclu for @NATO response force if activated,
per @PentagonPresSec

US "keenly focused" on #Russia's military build-up along #Ukraine & in #Belarus
MORE: @SecDef has placed "a range of units on a heightened readiness to deploy" - about 8,500 personnel - per @PentagonPresSec
"As of now the decision has been made to pace these units on heightened alerts & heightened alert only" per @PentagonPresSec

Some units been told to be ready to deploy in as little as 5 days, he says

"No final decision has been made to deploy them"
Read 16 tweets
- 175 #ISIS dead, 450 recaptured & dozens, possibly 100s more escaped & on the loose.
- 27 #SDF dead & 25 held hostage;
- 45,000 civilians displaced.

This was #ISIS's biggest attack in #Syria & #Iraq for 3yrs
After 5 days of fighting, a mammoth force -- 10,000 #SDF fighters + U.S. & UK special forces + U.S. air support -- has fought back, but still, 25% of al-Sina Prison remains in #ISIS hands & #ISIS cells continue to fight in x2 parallel neighborhoods.
Q -- how did 200 #ISIS fighters (many wearing suicide belts) & x2 car bombs get past ~12 #SDF checkpoints, into a heavily fortified city, home to the largest #ISIS detainee facility in the world?

It's almost certain now that #ISIS infiltrated/bribed #SDF-linked security forces.
Read 19 tweets
UPDATE: Fighting raging for a 3rd day in/around al-Sina'a prison in #Hasakah #Syria

#SDF statements say the US-backed forces continue to battle cells of #ISIS fighters, both inside the northern section of the prison & in neighborhoods to the south of the prison
MORE: #SDF officials says an estimated 200 #ISIS fighters were involved in the initial attack on the prison in #Hasakah

An estimated 175 #ISIS have been killed

SDF says 27 of their own soldiers have died in the fighting
The US-led coalition w/ongoing support for #SDF vs #ISIS in #Hasakah

The coalition has said that support includes airstrikes

Apache attack helicopters, F-16s have been active

Bradley armored vehicles also seen in the area
Read 23 tweets
JUST IN: US @StateDept condemns #ISIS attack, attempted prison break in #Hasakah, NE #Syria

"Attacking the detention facility was a top ISIS priority for more than a year" per @StateDeptSpox Ned Price, praising #SDF for limiting "the severity of this one [attack]" Image
UPDATE: Pro-#SDF @RojavaIC, citing SDF officials, says #ISIS attack on al-Sina'a prison in #Hasakah killed 22 SDF soldiers & wounded 17

45 ISIS members killed, including 22 on Saturday

5 civilians & 1 journalist have also been killed

110 ISIS prisoners were recaptured
MORE: @RojavaIC also reporting fighting continues at the al-Sina'a prison in #Hasakah, w/ #SDF getting help from US Apache attack copters.

Observers say Bradley Fighting vehicles also spotted in the area

On Friday, @DeptofDefense confirmed it was launching airstrikes vs ISIS
Read 4 tweets
BREAKING -- reports of an attack on the al-Sina prison in al-Hasakeh, NE #Syria, possibly involving an IED/VBIED.

The prison holds 5,000 #ISIS militants, mostly foreign fighters.

Local sources say prisoners conducted some form of incident in coordination with the bombing.
An #ISIS plot to attack al-Sina Prison was foiled in November 2021 -- involving an SVBIED & assault team equipped with a pick-up truck of rifles to provide to #ISIS prisoners inside.

Very concerning to see prisons coming under #ISIS's attention again, in January 2022.
This video reportedly shows the aftermath of a suspected car bomb outside al-Sina Prison's exterior walls:

Some sources say ~20 #ISIS detainees escaped. U.S. aircraft now overhead.
Read 28 tweets
1. I see that @nytimes has published a story on the battle to defeat the last holdouts of #Daesh in Baghuz. Unlike the Times reporters, I reported on it in real time. Daesh was attacking and we stopped them overrunning the #SDF. Women were often #Daesh fighters and wore vests.
2. This report shows the reporters are clueless as to what this war was about and who combatants were. My guess is that by the end of the battle, Daesh had started to murder the Yazidis sex slaves so they could not be witnesses of the atrocities that Daesh committed since 2014
3. that Daesh and Turkey continue to commit while the @nytimes says nothing about it nor the slave markets in Turkey because Turkey tells @nytimes and the rest of the MSM what they can report.
Read 7 tweets
A Turkish convoy near the city of Mari', north of #Syria, was attacked by two anti-armour missiles from the Tal Rifat area, which led to the destruction of two cars, the death of two Turkish policemen, and injuring a number of others.1/7
#Russia #USA #YPG #SDF #Erdogan ImageImage
The Turkish Interior Ministry confirmed that the Kurdish #YPG militia was behind this attack, as it controls the Tal Rifat area, while a number of Turkish officials confirmed that #Turkey will not remain silent this time.2/7…
At the outset, some important points should be highlighted to understand what happened and can take place in light of this tension as the information that confirms #Ankara's intention to start a new military operation in #Syria.3/7
#USA #Russia #Turkey ImageImage
Read 7 tweets
The idea that the CIA's T-50 program with the #FSA "failed" & the DOD's Train, Advise, Assist & Equip program with the #YPG-#SDF "succeeded" -- one key point made here -- is a bit of a simplification.

There can't be a direct comparison, given the operational differences.
The CIA's T50 program was covert & limited strictly to weapons supply & [very] limited intel support/external advice to groups (a) active in a highly complex environment, amid hostile jihadists & (b) against governments, with airforce/s, artillery etc.
The DOD's #YPG-#SDF program was initiated amid a direct U.S military intervention, in which U.S. SOF were deployed on the ground & close air support & later artillery support was provided -- to strengthen the #SDF, incentivize its unity, and protect it from *all* rivals/enemies.
Read 8 tweets
I have been reporting on these protests against the #SDF and the #Deir al-Zor region for years. I was one of the few to independently report from the area in 2019, a few months after the Baghouz was liberated from #IS (#ISIS).

Thread with links:
Mine from 2019: "...diesel is three times as expensive in Shuhail as it is in the Kurdish-dominant north, despite the proximity of key oil fields, and that this price gouging is only one of many ways the US-backed SDF is making local residents desperate"…
"....that doesn't justify what [the SDF is] doing. A 70-year-old man was killed. Four young men who had fought IS in the ranks of the SDF and two civilians were [killed] too. Why?”

Male relatives of those killed in a mysterious raid May 9 agreed to meet May 20 with Al-Monitor"
Read 11 tweets
1. Is Joey Hood trying to complete a #Daesh genocide of the Yazidi? What specific terrorist acts have #PKK committed in Sinjar? They are at most a separatist group engaged in a Turkish civil war for…‘Future-is-bright’-for-US-Kurdish-relations
2. over 40 years. The idea that the #KRG government will protect the Yazidi who they abandoned to #Daesh is absurd. This statement is going to give license to the Turks to attack more hospitals and refugee camps like yesterday's attack and they give license to the Turks
3. to kill our #SDF partners who, because they are Kurds, are all considered fair game by Ankara and apparently by the @SecBlinken @StateDept. IMO complicity in these political assassinations are EO 12,333 violations that can have people like Hood, @CENTCOM McKenzie and
Read 8 tweets

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