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How Omran, the dazed Aleppo boy who reappeared this week became a political pawn

How Omran, the dazed Aleppo boy who reappeared this week became a political pawn

By Samantha Schmidt ( The Washington Post )- For a few fleeting moments, scores of people worldwide knew the face and name of the young Syrian boy in the ambulance. They saw the gut-wrenching scene in Aleppo last August captured in a photograph and video that quickly circulated on...

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The Error of Arming the Syrian Kurds

The Error of Arming the Syrian Kurds

( The New York Times )- The United States recently committed itself to arming the Kurdish People’s Protection Units, known as the Y.P.G., to help evict the Islamic State from its Syrian stronghold, Raqqa. This decision is likely to prove deeply troublesome, risking the regional stability...

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Omran  trapped between Zain and regime propaganda

Omran trapped between Zain and regime propaganda

By Naser Ali (Zaman Al Wasl)- Is Zain the Kuwaiti telecommunication company’s recent advertisement connecting Omran Dokneish, a Syrian child, with the scene of a suicide attack aimed at presenting the regime as innocent and blaming al-Qaeda and the Jihadist factions for all the violations...

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Qatar and Syria’s seven priorities

Qatar and Syria’s seven priorities

(Zaman Al Wasl)- The Syrian revolution and Qatar have many intersections and Qatar preceded everyone in some of these intersections. Zaman al-Wasl presents 7 priorities for Qatar with the Syrian revolution: July 18, 2011: The Qatari Ambassador and the Qatari Diplomatic Mission...

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Could Syria's 'prosecutor without a tribunal' work?

Could Syria's 'prosecutor without a tribunal' work?

( Al-Jazeera )- When Mahmoud Nowar was released from detention, doctors told his father that he was so withered and malnourished that he would only have survived a few more days of starvation and torture at the hands of Syrian government forces. The pro-democracy activist and former resident...

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Syria’s bloodiest battle is yet to come — and 1 million civilians are at risk

Syria’s bloodiest battle is yet to come — and 1 million civilians are at risk

(The Washington Post )- They came from every corner of Syria: people who fled fighting but could not afford smugglers’ fees to go farther. Now nearly 1 million are packed into one province in Syria’s northwest, eyeing a weeks-old cease-fire there with trepidation, fear and mistrust....

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Trump said he would ‘take out’ the families of ISIS fighters. Did an airstrike in Syria do just that?

Trump said he would ‘take out’ the families of ISIS fighters. Did an airstrike in Syria do just that?

( The Washington Post )- Back when he was still a candidate and not president of the United States, Donald Trump had a suggestion for winning the battle against the Islamic State: “Take out their families.” “The other thing with the terrorists is you have to take out their families,...

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Are the U.S. and Iran on a Collision Course in Syria?

Are the U.S. and Iran on a Collision Course in Syria?

BY DAN DE LUCE, PAUL MCLEARY ( Foreign Policy )- A U.S. air raid against Iranian-backed fighters in southern Syria last week represents a volatile new phase of the conflict that could trigger a wider confrontation between the United States and Iran — and their allies on the ground....

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How Trump could deal a blow to Iran and help save Syria

How Trump could deal a blow to Iran and help save Syria

( The Washington Post )- Despite President Trump’s reluctance to get deeply involved in the Syrian civil war, the United States now finds itself in the middle of an escalating battle in the country’s south that last week led to a clash between the U.S. military and Iranian-backed...

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Syria Has Effectively Ceased to Exist

Syria Has Effectively Ceased to Exist

By Jonathan Spyer ( Foreign Policy )- On my last night in Damascus, some younger members of the Information Ministry-sponsored delegation in which I was taking part decided to have a drink. It was late April, and the bars and restaurants were doing good business in the cool and breezy...

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What Trump can learn from previous US presidents' Mideast visits

What Trump can learn from previous US presidents' Mideast visits

( The Middle East Eye )- US presidents tend to either sink or swim during forays to the Middle East. So when the current commander-in-chief, Donald Trump, boards Air Force One for his first foreign presidential venture to Saudi Arabia on Thursday, he may benefit from a recap of his...

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Why southern Syria remains Jordan’s biggest security threat

Why southern Syria remains Jordan’s biggest security threat

( Al-Monitor )- Jordan is anxiously watching military and security developments along its northern border with war-torn Syria, according to a number of Jordanian military and strategic analysts with whom Al-Monitor recently spoke amid heightened tensions between Amman and Damascus. Since King...

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Al-Assad’s crematorium: he cannot hide his tracks

Al-Assad’s crematorium: he cannot hide his tracks

( The Guardian )- The Assad regime in Syria is not only responsible for the worst state-orchestrated mass killings so far this century, it now appears to be trying to cover up at least some of its tracks in the belief that this will one day help it evade accountability when the war is over. It...

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Expectations low as Erdogan arrives in DC

Expectations low as Erdogan arrives in DC

( Al-Monitor )- Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrives in Washington today to hold what promises to be a bumpy meeting with his American counterpart Donald Trump. The pair are expected to meet at the White House May 16 and much of the discussion will likely focus on a controversial US...

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If London were Aleppo – 4.3 million dead or displaced

If London were Aleppo – 4.3 million dead or displaced

The bombed-out buildings of Aleppo may bear little resemblance to London’s gleaming skyscrapers but the two cities once had much in common, something German artist Hans Hack has seized on to bring home the reality of war.  Before Syria’s 6-year-old conflict, Aleppo, like London, was...

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Key opposition group on brink of collapse, last chance talk

Key opposition group on brink of collapse, last chance talk

By Abdullah Ghadawi (Zaman Al Wasl)- The atmosphere of tension has returned to the corridors of the Syrian National Coalition after the recent election battle in which Riad Saif and his supporters wan the presidency. These elections have left a situation of political...

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Trump is getting closer to collusion with Russia in Syria

Trump is getting closer to collusion with Russia in Syria

By Josh Rogin ( Washington Post )- President Trump’s Wednesday meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the White House was not primarily about sanctions or Crimea or even Russian interference in the 2016 election. According to Trump, the U.S. government now looks favorably...

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France: presidential candidates weight on Syria conflict

France: presidential candidates weight on Syria conflict

 By Ethar Abdulhaq (Zaman Al Wasl)- The French debate between the presidential candidates Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen was almost a debate on the Syrian issue, or so it looked like when it came to discussing the file of security and terrorism as it is the most delicate file to play...

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Iranian site severely damaged by Israeli airstrikes: satellite images      Deal reached to evacuate pro-regime Syria towns: activist group      Israel prepared for ‘any scenario’ in Gaza: Netanyahu      Nearly 270 undocumented migrants held across Turkey      Iran resumes air flights to Iraq’s Najaf      Assad forces take strategic hilltop in southwestern Syria      After reprieve, Britain's May faces Brexit battle in parliament on trade      Russian establishment chalks up Trump summit as a win for Putin