[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Syria and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Syria Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week`s roundup to email@example.com by Monday night of every week.]
Aleppo Onslaught Leaves Syrians Stranded on Border The Russian-supported onslaught on the city of Aleppo and surrounding countryside has forced more than 50,000 people to flee their homes and head north to the Turkish border. Syria’s displace remain stranded with nowhere to go.
Syria: The winners and losers are becoming clear in this war The way is far from over, but the faint shape of an endgame is coalescing amid the bloodbath.
Strikes on hospitals and schools kill up to 50 in Syria UN says missiles hit five hospitals and two schools in Aleppo and Idlib provinces as hopes for peace fade.
Will regime keep the upper hand in Syrian conflict? The Syrian army has gained control of the area connecting Moadamiyet al-Sham and Daraya in Rif Dimashq, though opposition figures say the siege won’t last.
Isis has been thwarted militarily. But now it could seize chance to advance In Syria, Islamic State has failed to reclaim Idlib and western Aleppo, but the military landscape is changing – probably to the benefit of the extremists.
Saudi Arabia sends troops and fighter jets to military base in Turkey ahead of intervention against Isis in Syria Saudi officials have stated that they want to fight Isis and see President Bashar al-Assad removed.
Syria conflict: Bashar Assad vows to retake whole country Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said that he intends to retake "the whole country" from rebel forces.
22 dead, 8 presumed dead after 2 hospitals struck in Syria, sources say At least 15 people are dead and up to 40 are wounded after strikes in Azaz, in Syria`s Aleppo province. In a separate attack, seven people were killed when a hospital was struck in Idlib province. One hospital was supported by Doctors Without Borders, which supported another hospital targeted in strikes earlier this month.
Syrian Officer Gave a View of War. ISIS Came, and Silence Followed Abu al-Majd, a Syrian police officer who was being deployed more and more often like a soldier, texted at all hours, sending news from the front lines and grumbling about boring, sunbaked patrols, his complaints sometimes punctuated by expressions of terror, pride or doubt.
The Liberated Women of Idlib Bahja Muallem writes that: "The significant role Idlib’s most devout women played serving the Syrian revolution is one I will never forget. These veiled women were fondly known as Hara’iruna [our liberated women], and they did everything in their power to support the opposition during its fight to liberate the city."
Regional and International Perspectives
America’s policies are failing its regional allies The U.S. has prioritized the appearance of progress in Syria over its allies and actually defeating the Islamic State.
The current chaos in Syria may help the Islamic State “U.S. and Russian reach an agreement calling for a ‘cessation of hostilities’ between the major parties fighting in the five-year conflict.”
Hijab from Munich: Solution is to Neutralize `Hostile` Acts of Russia, Iran Head of the opposition negotiating delegation says the solution for the crisis in Syria lies in neutralizing foreign influences represented by Moscow and Tehran’s “hostile” operations.
Will US, Russia be able to turn `words on paper` into action in Syria? The United States and Russia, meeting with international powers, announced that they had agreed on a plan for rapid humanitarian aid delivery to seven besieged areas in Syria and to try to work out a temporary truce to go into effect after one week.
Turkish military shelled Kurdish militia in Syria: government source Turkey`s military shelled Kurdish militia targets in northern Syria on Saturday, a Turkish government source said, hours after Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu warned that Ankara would act if it faced a threat from across the border.
Syria conflict: Pressure grows on Russia over civilian bomb deaths Pressure is increasing on Russia over civilian deaths in Syria, with France and the US urging greater caution.
Turkey pledges to send ground forces to fight Islamic State in Syria Turkey will supply ground forces to an anti-Islamic State coalition in Syria and will allow Saudi Arabian strike missions against the militants from its air bases, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said in an interview published Saturday (February 13, 2016).
Handing Syria to Russia Would Inflame Jihadism Abroad Sam Heller writes about what a regime victory in western Syria would mean for jihadism at home and abroad.
Iran says ready to put rivalries aside with Saudi Arabia Iran and Saudi Arabia must overcome strained relations and work for stability in Syria and the Middle East, Iran`s foreign minister said on Friday (February 12, 2016), a day after Syrian peace talks brought the rivals to the same table for the first time in months.
Diplomacy as anesthetic in Syria Fred Hiatt attempts in this article to answer the question: "Is John F. Kerry an enabler?"
Policy and Reports
A Ceasefire in Syria? Aron Lund talks on the future of Syria and argues the notion that a ceasefire in Syria is unlikely.
VOL 8, NO 1 (2016) SYRIAN SECULARISM: INTELLECTUAL & ORGANISATIONAL NARRATIVES This issue includes a preface by Raymond Hinnebusch; the article "Revisiting Ideological Borrowings in Syrian Nationalist Narratives: Sati ‘al-Husri, Michel ‘Aflaq and Zaki al-Arsuzi" by Rahaf Aldoughli; and the article "Organisationally Secular: Damascene Islamist Movements and the Syrian Uprising" by Omar Imady.
Syrian Armed Opposition Forces in Aleppo The United States faces a geostrategic inflection in Syria that it has not yet fully recognized. The “cessation of hostilities” declared on February 11, 2016 permits Russia and the Assad regime to continue targeting U.S. allies in Aleppo under the pretext that the opposition in the city consists predominantly of al Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al Nusra.
The Planned Invasion of Syria: Are We on the Eve of War. Is the US Leading Saudi Arabia Down “the Kuwaiti Invasion Road”? JC Collins writes: "For the first time in a long time I feel concerned and worried about the prospect of war. The reaction of Saudi Arabia to the Russian intervention in Syria has always been the wild card in the shifting geopolitical power base in the Middle East. Turkey and Israel, along with Saudi Arabia are the three countries with the most to lose because of a strong alliance between Syria, Iran, Hezbollah, and Russia."
Syria: Health system close to collapse in war-torn Azaz district An escalation of fighting will trigger further massive displacement and deepen humanitarian crisis.
The Staggering Price of Syria’s Reconstruction Five years of war in Syria have left large swathes of the country in ruin. While an end to the war is nowhere in sight, a reconstruction bill that is likely to run well over $100 billion means that planning for Syria`s eventual rebuilding must start now.
Syria civil war: Angela Merkel backs no-fly zones to protect civilians after Russia accused of bombing schools and hospitals The air campaign has sent a new wave of refugees to the Turkish border, alarming both Ankara and European leaders fearful that more people could seek to reach their shores.
Documentaries, Special Reports, and Other Media
Syria: Time to Favor a Dictator Over Democracy? Audio clip of Joshua Landis giving his insight on the future of Syria and what will become of ongoing five-year conflict.
Tech tackles the refugee crisis A global grassroots nonprofit called Techfugees held its first U.S.-based event on Tuesday (February 9, 2016). The goal of this particular Techfugees event was to create a list of the major questions that tech needs to answer -- and then start thinking about how the solutions might look.
Telling Syria`s story: Media across the battle lines A look at efforts in Damascus to sell the war inside Syria; plus, how exiled Syrian journalists send the news back home.
Interview With Hayvi Bouzo of Orient TV John Kerry speaks about Syria`s future in an interview with Hayvi Bouzo of Orient TV.
Statement by the Executive Director of UNICEF, Anthony Lake on Strikes against children in a hospital in Syria Executive Director says: "We at UNICEF are appalled by reports of attacks against four medical facilities in Syria – two of which were supported by UNICEF. One is a child and maternal hospital where children were reportedly killed and scores evacuated."
حلب: تعديلات جوهرية على خريطة السيطرة العسكرية This article overviews the recent military development of Aleppo map.
في سياق نشاطات مشروع تغيير الصورة النمطية للمرأة السورية سيدة سوريا تعلن نتائج مسابقة بوح نسائي للكتابة غير الاحترافية لعام ٢٠١٥ The results of a competition of women`s writing that challenges stereotypes of Syrian women was announced with 10 winning texts.
ما قبل مؤتمر لندن وما بعده: إحياء التحريض ضد اللاجئين في الإعلام Ahmed Abu Ahmed discusses hate speech in Jordanian media against Syrian refugee and its political and economic motivations.
أنا جندي سوري This text by Khalil Harb is dedicated to Syrian soldier who dies in the the current war.
بالفيديو: كاميرا CNN في الصفوف الأولى من معركة الجيش السوري مع داعش CNN films this report on the frontlines of the Syrian regime army’s battle with ISIS.
حلب.. المعركة الحاسمة Faced with their toughest challenge to date, Syrian rebels are losing ground in Aleppo ahead of the Geneva III peace talks slated to resume Feb. 25.
An English version of this article available here: Battle for Aleppo rages on after peace talks suspended
المحاكم الشرعيّة في سوريا ومدى قربها من تحقيق العدل Sharia courts founded by armed groups in Syria are currently the sole judicial power in the areas outside the regime’s control.
An English version of this article available here: Syria`s Sharia courts
حكايات حب دمشقية في زمن الخراب! Akram Albouni shares stories of love from Damascus, Syria in times of war.
دي ميستورا يصل إلى دمشق للقاء المعلّم Staffan de Mistura arrvies into Damascus to meet with Walid Muallem in order to discuss the resumption of negotiations, ceasefire, and humanitarian assistance to the besieged towns.