January 15, 2018; Situation Report: The Middle East Today

Syrian Kurdistan 

The Syrian Kurds are deep in American approved negotiations with Syria, Russia and Turkey for a final resolution of the long standing Kurdish problem. 

In coordination with the American Five Point Plan presented by Bolton in Turkey, the Kurds have submitted a proposal to Moscow and Syria, that would allow the Syrian government to restore its overall sovereignty over the vast area of Syria taken over by the Kurds. In return, the Kurds want the Syrian government to grant them a degree of autonomy, allowing them to continue their experiment in self-governance and an internationally policed buffer zone between Turkey and Syrian Kurdistan would be established. 

An agreement has been reached on  32 k (20 mi) buffer zone between Turkey and the Kurds and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is planning to visit Moscow in the coming days to discuss the plan with Russian President Vladimir Putin.  

After final agreement by Turkey, Russia and Syria with the Kurds on the pullout of Kurdish militias from a 20 mile wide border buffer zone in exchange for Kurdish autonomy the US ground troops will pull out of Syria.

Small numbers of US military observers augmented by Arab forces will remain in Syria to help call in airstrikes in support of anti Islamic State operations [the Kurds will also block the supply route form Iran to Lebanon during the coming war].  The US air force will operate from three Iraqi bases: Tallil Air Base at Nasiriyah in the south, Ayn al-Assad in Anbar and K1 near Kirkuk.   

The Syrians are under heavy pressure from Russia to agree while the Kurds are being pressured by the United States which wants to leave the area, and by Turkish threats of invasion if a deal is not reached. 

Syria and Islamic Extremists

Despite the Idlib ceasefire between the Turkish backed militias and Syria,  the Islamic extremists from Chechnya and central Asia know full well that they must be destroyed before Russia can leave Syria. 

As a deal between Syria, Turkey and the Kurds is finalized, the Islamic extremists are preparing for an existential battle with Syria Russia, with a Turkish force blocking any possible escape route into Turkey. Therefore, during the present winter season with its fog and rain preventing any serious Russian air support for Syrian forces, these extremists are attacking and trying to establish defensible lines ahead of the expected Russian backed Syrian spring offensive.  

The Russian backed Syrian anti Islamic extremist offensive is expected as soon as the winter weather begins to clear which is usually end Feb or sometime in March. 

During that offensive it is widely reported that the extremists will stage a chemical weapons attack which will be blamed on Syria; which would be used as an excuse by president Trump to take out the Syrian air defenses opening the way for a full scale Israel operation against Hezbollah and Syria / Lebanon, with Gaza pledged to also enter the fight. 

Israel 

The final list of electoral candidates must be registered by Feb 21, meaning that the primaries and election preliminaries will be completed by then.  The election is scheduled for 9 April but could be postponed by the election commission due to a genuine emergency. 

In the elections, a peace oriented party could win, or Likud could win a majority of seats and be unable to form a governing coalition due to losses by the smaller right wing parties, in which case they would be forced to accept a coalition with the peace oriented parties or a new election would take place. 

Even if a peace oriented party were to win on April 9 it would probably take them until late April or sometime in May to form a coalition government. 

Gaza / Hezbollah 

The Gaza situation is extremely unstable with violence breaking out on an almost weekly basis and Netanyahu now ready to act strongly because of the approaching elections.  A full scale Israeli operation against the Gaza militias is only a matter of time and as winter wanes and the weather improves the probably of conflict increases substantially. 

Netanyahu is also determined to administer a heavy defeat to Hezbollah and Syria and to eradicate any other Iranian backed militias in Syria.  While  an Israeli operation in Gaza could potentially come sooner, the Hezbollah/Syria/Iran operation is likely to unfold after Syria and Russia have taken out the jihadists in Idlib province. 

It is important to let Syria Russia do the heavy lifting and destroy the remaining jihadists in Syria before Israel launches a major operation in Lebanon / Syria, otherwise these jihadist extremists will remain in a Syria [who’s military will have been demolished] in strong competition with the Turkish backed militias, and the US, Turkey and Israel will be forced to deal with them. 

 

Iran 

The US has called an international conference of her anti Iran coalition on Feb 14 in Poland.   During any general Mideast war the American coalition against Iran could be expected to intervene attacking the Revolutionary Guards and opening the way for a “Made in America” revolution in that nation. 

Mideast Peace

It is impossible to say exactly when individual events may take place or how long conflicts will take to unfold, but once the situation stabilizes serious attention will be paid to the Trump Peace Initiative which is now a fully complete peace deal covering all core issues. 

Once a peace deal is declared as achieved it will almost immediately collapse;  1 Thess 5:3.

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