NI2The Assad-ISIS Collaboration:

In 2015 according to media reports “Assad regime forces abandoned the city of Palmyra and allowed ISIS to take it over unopposed.

In 2014 the Assad regime refrained from attacking ISIS bases. A Syrian government adviser told the New York Times “this was indeed a deliberate policy designed to “tar” the broader opposition and “frame [the] choice” as either Assad or the extremists.

In a further twist in February last year the US Embassy in Syria accused the regime of supporting the ISIS advance on Syria’s largest city, Aleppo and tweeted – “Reports indicate that the regime is making air-strikes in support of ISIL’s advance on Aleppo, aiding extremists against Syrian population,” 

In March 2015 The FT reported “A Syrian businessman responsible for orchestrating millions of dollars’ worth of secret oil and gas trades between the Assad government and its supposed sworn enemy, ISIS is among 13 individuals and organizations hit with sweeping new economic sanctions by the EU.

talkingNow some Arab media are calling the liberation of Palmyra a choreographed theatrical play aimed at Western audiences with the simple message  – the regime is standing up to ISIS. The gullible London mayor Boris Johnson is one of those who has fallen victim to Assad’s flagrant deception. In an article in the Daily Telegraph he praised  both Assad and Putin.

Colonel Ahmad Hamadi of the FSA, explained that “in May 2015 the Syrian army withdrew from Palmyra without a fight opening the way for ISIS to occupy the ancient city. Assad wanted to show the world that ISIS poses a great threat and only his regime can defeat it.

Brigadier-General Asaad Awad Al Zoubi said that ISIS withdrew from Palmyra to provide Assad with the leverage needed to exert pressure during the political negotiations in Geneva.

A pro regime website (Syrian Perspective) quoted General Ali Abdullah Ayyoob, Chief of the Syrian General Staff as saying last Sunday: “the rats (ISIS men) inside were finally given the go-ahead to withdraw to Al-Sukhna, Al-Raqqa and Deir Ezzor. This morning at 5:00 a.m., the SAA had confirmation from sources inside the city that the piece-meal escape was taking place. The Syrian high command ordered troops to stand down until the last rodent had left”.

It would appear that similar scenarios are being drawn up to be repeated in Deir Ezzor, Raqqa and Sukhna, with the full knowledge and co-operation of ISIS.

Nehad Ismail

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10 Comments on "Palmyra: A Choreographed Liberation"

  1. mahatmacoatmabag | 31st March 2016 at 11:30 am | Reply

    Hi Nehad, as you point out all is not as it seems in the Syrian conflict and one thing is clear the Obama administration & the heads of government of EU states have absolutely know understanding of the conflicts in the Mid-East, North Africa , Central Africa & other parts of Asia where oil, religion, poverty & tribal divides abound.

    I will state categorically that ever since Jimmy Carter allowed the Shah to fall the Mid-East and adjacent regions have gone from stability to instability & now to what seems to be long term religious & ethnic conflict on a large scale with every US administration from Bill Clinton onwards making bad policy moves that have resulted in an increase in the scale of death & destruction till we reach today with a reinvigorated Iran with a US & Russian guaranteed path to nuclear weapons and funds to support the continuance of war by their Assad, Hezbollah & Houti proxies against their Sunni enemies.

    I sincerely hope that either Cruz or Trump becomes the next POTUS because their more forceful military responses are now urgently needed to react to Assad, Iran & ISIS because Hillary Clinton will continue Obama’s failed policies of appeasement of dictators thus ensuring the conflicts grow even more bloodier, longer & harder to resolve.

    • mahatmacoatmabag | 31st March 2016 at 11:31 am | Reply

      Substitute No for Know in the sentence ” have absolutely know understanding of the conflicts ” Sorry for the error.

  2. Nehad, If ISIL are hand in glove with Assad then why not just keep it simple and squeeze the FSA from both sides and defeat it?. Why deploy both your own and ISIL troops in some charade of being enemies thus taking manpower away from the fight that you actually need to win?. Why two years ago was this not seized upon by western intelligence agencies and the western media at a time when they were peddling a staunchly anti-Assad and anti Russian line?. Why is there evidence of arms and recruits arriving from Turkey to aid ISIL and oil shipments going the other way when Turkey is staunchly anti Assad, surely you aren’t going to say that there is a three way collusion going on?
    With regards to the battle for Palmyra there may indeed have been a propaganda dividend to be gained by allowing ISIL to occupy the site however the opinions of members of the FSA and the HNC on the matter can be given the same credence you would give to anyone who is speaking about their hated enemy. There is no doubt that the priority for the Syrian army is the FSA as once they have been defeated no one is going to suggest ISIL takes there place at peace talks. There is simply no strategic reason for the Syrian army to use it’s main combat strength to defeat ISIL at this juncture but that doesn’t automatically imply that they are somehow allied.

  3. Bullsh#t

  4. nehad ismail | 1st April 2016 at 1:03 pm | Reply

    Thanks Mahatmacoatmabag for your perspective. All I can add is that the Obama Administration has failed in the Middle East. Let’s hope the next admin. will do a better job.

  5. nehad ismail | 1st April 2016 at 1:09 pm | Reply

    Thanks Rob. You raise several important points. I would say that ISIS/ISIL is already fighting the FSA and other rebels in Deraa and Aleppo, and is doing that to help the Assad’s regime. ISIS is like a gang for hire. It is being used by Iran, by Assad and now by Russia to serve their own agenda. Even Turkey used ISIS to punish the Kurdish rebels (PKK and YPG).
    It is such a complex situation that one must examine how ISIS evolved since Mid 2013. I shall post couple of links later today when I have a chance.

  6. Interesting that all that talk about the ancient Palmyra having been wiped off th emap turned out to be untrue

  7. nehad ismail | 1st April 2016 at 5:13 pm | Reply

    Rob: This link has some relevant details. It explains the Syrian and Iranian connections to ISIS, prior to Russian intervention. If it doesn’t open, please paste on google search and it should come up:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/nehad-ismail/syria-crisis-assad_b_7946224.html

  8. Nehad, There are many claims as to where the oil from ISIL controlled fields goes. This article in the FT claims it goes mainly to rebel controlled Syria and also Iraq.
    http://ig.ft.com/sites/2015/isis-oil/

    I wouldn’t dispute that ISIL has been a gift to Assad in propaganda terms and that this has given him an interest in them remaining in existence but I do honestly think that is as far it goes. The accusation that Assad isn’t fighting ISIL very hard can just as easily be levelled at Turkey, USA and the ‘west’ in general.

  9. nehad ismail | 2nd April 2016 at 7:40 pm | Reply

    Thanks Rob for the link. The FT acknowledges that ISIS controls most oil fields. No doubt the full facts will come out at some point in future.

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