conflict zones, latest, Systematic, video

Video: Syrian Army progresses in rebel-held East Ghouta


Still from the video below showing the Syrian Army entering Beit Sawa today.

Al Masdar News reports:

BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:39 P.M.) – After short but high-pitched battle, elite forces of the Syrian Army have taken full control of an imperative half-way point in Damascus’ East Ghouta region – the town of Beit Sawa.

According to military-affiliated sources, insurgent fighters of Faylaq al-Rahman and Jaysh al-Islam abandoned their positions in Beit Sawa after the Syrian Army breached their main defensive line on the town’s outskirts and entered its center.

Elite Syrian assault troops had their operation to take the town backed up by tank and artillery forces as well as airpower.

The capture of Beit Sawa has now burst open the door for the Syrian Army to advance on a major militant stronghold in East Ghouta – the town of Masraba – from its southern and eastern approaches.

It is yet to be seen if the Syrian Army commits to fully-fledged attack on Masraba tonight (Wednesday) or holds off operations against the rebel stronghold for another day.

Related from Al Masdar News:

BEIRUT, LEBANON (1:20 P.M.) – A large number of civilians in an East Ghouta town took to the streets, today, to show support for the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), Damascus Now reported.

According to Damascus, the residents of Al-Hammouriyah carried the flag of the Syrian Arab Republic through the streets of their town, while chanting in support of the government and army.

The residents of Al-Hammouriyah also called on the militants inside the town to leave in order to avoid any hostilities in this part of the East Ghouta.

Below is one of the videos from Al-Hammouriyah that was released by Damascus Now:

A connection to Facebook is required to see the videos.


  1. Given the number of Iranian Republican Guards fighting alongside the secular Syrian army, and their seeing pictures of Syria’s beautiful First Lady Asme Assad going about her multifarious Good Works bare headed, how long do you think it will be before The Woman Question pops up in Iran? I think it wont be long before the women win their way; they always do. Today yet another Iranian woman makes world headlines, arrested for exposing her cranial hair in public:

    British women got the vote (and much more important, the right to go bare headed and wear short skirts) when their men returned from the front after WW1.

    “How you gonna keep ’em / Down on the farm / Now that they’ve seen Paree?”

    • Mikalina says

      In 1918, in Britain, women over the age of 30 and with £5 worth of property or married with a husband with £5 worth of property were given the vote. For voting equality, women waited a further ten years

        • Sorry, double post. This is my real answer to Mikalina. Iranian women have the vote; just looked it up, 50% of the electorate — more than British women had at the date you mention.. But as Prof.Leacock predicted at the time (The Woman Question, 1916) the vote is no more use to a woman than it is to you or me. Like I said, Iranian women are fighting for something far more useful: short skirts and bare hair. Adous Huxley even wrote an essay over the way Milton went into literal ecstasy because, Eve being naked and unashamed, Adam could get the full glory of her cranial hair all day long. I have not read The Miltonic Verses myself, but I believe they are heady stuff. No wonder poor Adam was putty in her hands. No wonder Milton and his Puritan patriarchs insisted on being protected by women being compelled to don the Modesty Bonnet.

          “He for God alone, she for God in him.”

          • Mikalina says

            You seem to the the male view down to a pat, have you ever tried asking a woman?

            • Mikalina, I get the feminist view in triplicate without asking from my daughter and two grand daughters, descendents of a woman engineer/scientist and a great-great grandmother Lawyer going back 100 years. So can claim to see both sides of The Woman Question. Hence my interest in those Iranian women who may have the vote and a profession but are nontheless bound by a powerful dress code — as we are in the West. We are not so free as we think, and Fashion seems to be a great restrictive force. The Devil wears Prada.

    • Mikalina says

      Like the adarticle about young Saudis welcoming the ‘young crown prince (always expect to see ‘bonny’ put in there somewhere).

      TeleSUR reports the protest in London at his visit.

      So difficult knowing what to believe.

      • @Mikalina
        It is not hard or difficult in what to believe
        Rule Number UNO /one: What ever the legacy media tells you just think the opposite.
        So IE: Weapons of mass destruction or Israel has the right to protect itself .
        There are no weapons of mass destruction
        Israel has just illegally bombed innocent civilians amd total disregard of International Law.
        IE Clinton has a 90 percent chance of winning thew POTUS election.
        Clinton has na even money chance of losing the election
        The Russians hacked any western government election
        The legacy media and the oligarchs have lost credibility and the PR and perception management of lies is not working on the sheeple.
        See that is not hard.

  2. MichaelK says

    Call me… cynical, or something, but I just heard a bit of BBC World Service’s OS programme, from the heart of the BBC’s newsroom… everyone is always so busy and there’s a lot of guests. The one I listened to, sort of wish I hadn’t, was guy from the Arab section talking, rather emotionally I thought, about the terrible conditions in Eastern Ghouta. Well, he sounded like he was working for the rebels/militants inside the enclave… 100%. It was pure pr for them and he was clearly and obviously on their side and extremely critical of the Syrian ‘regime’ as in repeatedly called them and their terrible Russian allies who were killing so many little children and innocent civilians, merciless, just like Aleppo, which he kept referring to.

    I’ll admit it. I am cynical about the BBC’s coverage of events in Syria, which is brazenly biased and really little more than propaganda for the ‘rebels’, but this guy, the Arab journalist, was really quite extraordinarily partisan to a degree that left me stunned. How on earth do the BBC justify sending stuff like this?

    • Mikalina says

      Oh, Michael. You really do have to stop listening to BBC World Service. I can’t anymore since I threw my digital radio at the wall in the middle of an OS report on Venezuela.

  3. Posted on SyrPer 11hr ago by Muslim Dude. Clip from longer article re Trump’s attitude:
    Muslim Dude
    1. Eastern Ghouta pocket on the verge of being split in to two unconnected halves. The speed of the offensive has been far quicker than many expected. So the whole offensive may in the end be a 20 something or 30 something day offensive.
    Everyone knows eastern Ghouta is going to fall.
    2. Trump doesn’t care, so hence this is perhaps indicative of the nationalist, pro-American wing of the US plutocracy.
    In his recent tweets Trump has mentioned things mainly of concern to the US economy. The few foreign countries he mentions are China, North Korea, Mexico, Canada and the EU (for pedants, EU not a country but a foreign entity).

  4. Jj says

    The war will drag on as long as Israel has someone to do the fighting for them- such as terrorists or a coalition led by the USA.

  5. People are beginning to say (BTL of course) that the battle for Syria is like the battle for Stalingrad; a decisive battle in which the free world was saved by Russia and its allies. In the dark days of WW2 Russia’s allies were Britain and the USA against the Nazi enemy; but these days Russia’s allies are Syria and Iran while Britain and USA have joined the NATZO enemy of the free world. With this defeat of NATZO in Syria, one might hope that Britain and the USA will come to their senses and abandon NATZO’s ideology of naked aggression, same as Germany came to its senses after its defeat at Stalingrad and abandoned Nazi ideology of naked aggression. If so, there will be a great resurgpnce and rebuilding in the ME, and a great peace such as happened in Europe after the horrors of WW2.

    • Big B says

      Sorry Vex: but you are so very nearly always spot on (love the literary quotes BTW) but there is literally no chance of a NATZO demilitarisation. Conflict is only set to intensify. Macron is upping his budget and introducing conscription; Mutti has made her coalition and is rattling her sabre again; UK forces are integrating with French forces which are integrating with German forces (Lancaster House Treaties; PESCO; CARD) which are integrating with NATZO (or after the Munich Conference, at least hinting they may deploy unilaterally). There is a re-surfaced Quads dialogue between US, India, Japan and Australia. Everyone is re-militarising. Mad Dog is creating his new “more lethal” model army: in defence of capitalism (the AZC super army) to see off the ‘Mongol, Slavic and Han Hordes’ from the East. These forces are supra-state, post-democratic, and beyond the control of you or I …answering only the Masters of Fossil capital. I’m calling it the ‘synarchic supra-society’ [after Alexander Zinoviev]. Russia and China may choose to expand via a productive economy; and trade, not imperialism …but they will be challenged across the spectrum, in every theatre, by economic and ideological sabotage. How long before economic and currency proxy warfare ignites a spark?

      And if and when the submissive masses do wake up (that’s a big IF, and an even bigger WHEN?) they may find that their armed forces don’t answer to them any more? Or to their governments? Factor in the inevitable decline of non-renewable resources: and you have bigger and bigger multi-polarising supra-societal forces competing for a smaller and smaller pot of reserves. You don’t have to be a Sherlock to deduce the result?

      • @BigB. You are right in fact, but I am an idealist who believes in the power of spirit as well as fact. (Or perhaps I am just what psychiatrists call “in denial” of reality). We do what we can, according to our conscience and our talents, and hope not to be judged harshly (or, if one is an atheist, hope not to be judged at all) after death. We have a few simple rules, which some very wise persons set up a couple of thousand years ago to guide us through the world’s maze: Don’t Lie, don’t steal, don’t kill, Love God, Love your neighbours (or at least try to put up with them) and so on. Elementary things which a child can understand, that I learned in Jewish Govt Primary School, End Street, Johannesburg. These simple principles have stood me in good stead, enabled me to see through those high-faluting slogans “Liberal Intervention”, “Clash of Civilizations”, “Enduring Freedom” and “Responsibility to Protect”.

            “Be good, sweet maid, and let who will be clever”.  —  Charles Kingsley

        What is encouraging, from a hopefully practical point of view, is the gradual realization by people generally that, We have been Had. Perhaps this will bring us a fresh start; the way Hitler and WW2 made people temporarily sick of war and ethnic discrimination, and encouraged some really good things at the UN. Also encouraged a wave of socialism and public welfare across Europe, as well as 30-40 years of peace in Europe. Does anyone remember that? Wouldn’t it be nice if the young adults of today could look forward to as good a life as my generation have had?

        Curiously, the Baath Socialist Party of Syria headed by Dr.Assad is a left-over from those times; so was Ghaddafi’s Libya, and so were the founding fathers of modern Israel – German Bund Socialists and Russian Communists. Also modern Iran is socialist, according to Iranian journalist Ramin Mazaheri who did a series on Islamic socialism for the Saker Blog. Syria and Iran still run their own banks, which gives them some immunity to A-Z-C infiltration. But I believe the mainspring of any country is the quality of its Leaders and the morality of its People.

           “Things change but one thing does not change:
            The battle between Good and Evil does not change”.  — TS Eliot

        • Big B says

          Vexarb: if you are mad, so am I – the only solution is spiritual. The universal truths you learned were the same ones I live by, only I call them the Six Paramitas, or ‘perfections’ of Buddhism …same thing, all religions have the same core truth: love. There is only one meta-ethic, to do no harm (Ahimsa) – morality is the perfection and practice of that. So we are two crazies in a insane world!

          Sanity is growing: neoliberal globalisation has been found out …only the reaction has been defensive, protectionist, and expressed as populism (Trump’s tariffs; Italian election). How long will people stand for obscene and conspicuous displays of (unearned) wealth when (in the UK) child poverty is rising, the NHS crumbling, etc.? Populism is the authoritarian politics of envy: an I-want-some-of-that jealousy attaching to a demagogue who at least seems to promise inclusion in participatory wealth? Spirituality is to say enough-is-enough: let’s re-define wealth …co-defined with the very values that produce morality and peace …love capital; empathy capital, compassion capital …but that’s crazy: no one would go for that? Right?

          And the militaristic goose-step toward Armageddon and totalitarian ‘democracy’ in return for a share of the spoils of war and exploitative (financial) colonisation (material wealth) is sane? No one could think so: it advances through mass indifference and thoughtless acceptance. If truth can rekindle the dialogue (and it can) and people start stringing some thoughts together (toward an internationalised solidarity and morality) – I suspect we can wake up pretty fast?

        • Big B says

          BTW: the European Foreign Affairs Council held its first full PESCO meeting on Tuesday: to discuss progress and deployments (an “Action Plan” with 74 “concrete actions”). Africa was mentioned by Mogherini (they are targeting Mali and the Sub-Sahel – the”G5 Sahel joint Force”). Myanmar is another possibility for sanction and possible a ‘peace-keeping’ deployment previously mentioned. The important thing I noted is that this was an EU 28 meeting – though our traitorous [UK] government knows it is political suicide to even mention this.

          I want to clearly say that there is one set of forces that is at the disposal of every single Member State and then it is up to the Member States that own the capabilities to put them at the disposal of the European Union, of the UN, of NATO, or whatever kind of activities they are engaged in.

          That is the supra-societal relinquishing of sovereign authority I was alluding to. Who will be commanding our national forces? The BIS, IMF, World Bank? This is not even in the political landscape: almost the totality of the UK (except UK Column viewers) is not even aware that our government is ceding control of our armed forces to an unknown authority. That is post-democratic, totalitarian and treasonous – and here is the proof:

    • Jen says

      The Battle of Stalingrad analogy is apt, but not for the reasons expressed in Vexarb’s original comment: Britain and the US stayed right out of the fighting, even refusing to open a second front against the Germans to relieve pressure on the Soviet Union, until AFTER the Soviets had won and the Red Army commenced its drive to obliterate the Nazi enemy in eastern Europe; and the Soviets were forced to stand alone against Nazi Germany and its allies (Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Romania) in the German drive towards Baku and the energy resources of the Caspian Sea area.

      A third reason the analogy is apt, is that the Nazi government was blind to the realities on the ground around Stalingrad, in much the same way the US, the UK and other Western governments are either deliberately blind or indifferent to what is actually happening in Syria. Hence when disaster strikes for the West in the Middle East, in Ukraine or elsewhere in eastern Europe, it will insist on pouring and wasting more people and resources in what ultimately will be a lost war, just as Nazi Germany ended up tying most of its forces and its allies’ forces in fighting a losing war against the USSR.

    • bevin says

      “Germany came to its senses after its defeat at Stalingrad and abandoned Nazi ideology of naked aggression…”
      It is difficult to understand how you reached this conclusion. I think that you are right, though about the importance of the Syrian army’s advances. Taken together with the recent reminder, from Moscow, that the United States cannot any longer with impunity engage in brinkmanship this marks the end of an epoch.
      It might take the Pentagon a while to adjust to this but the war is coming to an end, Syria has survived. And any bases remaining will be mopped up.
      The era in which Israel did as it pleased and what it did pleased its American sponsors has come to an end. This will be news to the scoundrels collecting money at AIPAC but facts are facts. And Israel’s days of expansion/aggression are over. It may be of some consolation for them to realise that, were Saddam Hussein still in power in Baghdad they would be much better off.

      • Bevin: “any remaining bases will be mopped up”

        While all focus has been on Ghouta: the Empire moved 600 imperial stormtroopers to al-Tanf; petro-Islamic State have been resurgent near al-Mayadeen; and the US are considering another Ash Shairat tomahawk strike. Giving up would be a defeat in an ideological war that the exceptionalist mind cannot conceive of?

        • bevin says

          “Giving up would be a defeat in an ideological war that the exceptionalist mind cannot conceive of?’
          It will be hard, particularly for the renegade communist neo-cons who, besides building careers, have been single mindedly pursuing the will o’ the wisp (Global Domination) since the mid ’40s. Still it will have to be done and 600 soldiers sound more like a parcel of hostages than an army.
          In the news today is Erdogan’s claim that Turkey and Iraq are planning joint operations against the Barzani family estate known as Kurdistan. Bearing in mind the nature of the alliance between the Iraqi government and Tehran this suggests that the Pentagon will have to give up any idea of war with Iran. I suspect that they already have done so, and regard Iran as being protected by a Sino-Russian nuclear umbrella.

          • Mikalina says

            Do the Barzani offspring and their band of thugs (the real Pershmega would spit on them) still have some control over the pipeline up to the Turkish border then? Is that why the Iraqis want to attack them? Turkey, of course, doesn’t need a reason to kill Kurds. Whoever controls the oil from Kirkuk (UK, US, France, Russia even?) was having difficulties getting it through to Iran. A group, rumoured to be called the White Flags (you can’t make this up) were preventing this. I thought this part of Barzanistan was more under the influence of the Talibani offspring, who seemed to be continue the old man’s strategy of politically staying close to Baghdad. One thing’s for sure, though, whatever the outcome, the ‘ordinary’ Kurds will get shafted again.

        • @BigB. Glad you mentioned Al Tanf. Its significance was stressed by Canthama on SyrPer 1/2hr ago:
          An under-reported battle was fought recently between many Syrian allies and US backed terrorists & ISIS in al Tanf. The US terrorists tried to infiltrate the Syrian desert in the direction of Dumayr pocket, in order to send weapons and fresh terrorists (ISIS among them) to resupply East Ghouta and help in its defense.


          The allied forces blocked their attack and even advanced inside the US terrorists protected area, inside the 55 kms.

          Important to note that Syrian Anti Air Defense SAAD was in high alert all the time due to US and Israeli jets flying inside crooked Jordan to support their terrorists; the jets were constantly painted with radar and could not provide Close Air Support to ISIS nor to the other terrorists.

          • Big B says

            The US won’t leave Syria: that is why al-Tanf is vitally important given the possibility of direct conflict with Turkey in Afrin. If they leave completely then Russia will be set to be the Middle East peace broker. Can you imagine the US being a non-party to ME negotiations? No, neither can I: they want a seat at the table.

            ” …there must be an understanding that some countries may suffer as a result of our actions. A strategy of partial withdrawal from Syria or the Ukraine may actually allow for better future negotiations. The springtime drawdown of Russia from Syria allowed negotiation space for Putin, and even Assad.”

            This is an extract by Gustav A Otto, from a recent US Army CRELMO study. As featured in Nafeez Ahmed’s latest article. If you can ignore the blatant Putin demonising (including an egregious photoshop of Vlad as Blofeld!) the rest of the article is illuminating. It’s also a bit of a personal vindication for me, not that I should fall into the sin of vanity!!! But it’s nice to have ones thinking confirmed in black and white by the enemy!!!!! NATO aggression is driving Russian defensive militarism: no need to take it from me …this US Army study says it all.


            • Hellen Bartholomew says

              Rather than a seat at the table they seem to want to tip the table over and set the room on fire. Their sole strategy now seems to be a continuation of chaos.

                • Do they want peace at all? Ongoing low level war & social fragmentation seems to be their aim.

                  • Depends how you define peace: if they could stabilise MENA and the former Soviet satellites of Eurasia (pipelineistan) as an area of their sole influence (a Pax Capitalis?) …then yes they do (see Ahmed link). They want to dominate the territory and damage Putin economically. It appears that, at least the three authors of the study, are not as set on all out war as it may outwardly seem. The US have been suffering “war fatigue” due to the cost of being the “world police”. It’s part of the reason Trump got elected. Remember, he was going to close the bases! Do I feel any safer: not really!

                    • milosevic says

                      Depends how you define peace: if they could stabilise MENA and the former Soviet satellites of Eurasia (pipelineistan) as an area of their sole influence (a Pax Capitalis?) …then yes they do

                      Nazi foreign policy remains unchanged after three quarters of a century.

    • writerroddis says

      Great quality of debate on this thread. Thanks Vexarb, BigB, Jen and Bevin.

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