Sunday Syrian army retook the town of Kafr Nabuda it had lost 96 hours prior to a rebel counterstroke. Rebel resistance was relatively light and broken quickly, as their main force had evacuated before the army attack in the face of constant artillery and airstrikes.
The loss moved the rebels to hold a war council with leaders of all of the bigger factions attending, which placed supposed moderates in the same room with the most powerful of them — Abu Mohammad al-Julani, the leader of Nusra/JFS/HTS which is a spinoff from ISIS and pledges allegiance to al-Qaeda. (Julani is the one with the red-white cloth on his head.)
#Syria: probably the 1st time most prominent Rebel leaders (from #HTS to Faylaq, Ahrar Sham or Jaish Izza) met to discuss military coordination amidst Regime Offensive on Greater #Idlib. pic.twitter.com/bp34ILSrqn
— Qalaat Al Mudiq (@QalaatAlMudiq) May 26, 2019
The US has a $10 million reward out on Julani and has bombed his group in the past, most notably Obama did so with B-52s in January 2017 just as he was leaving office:
- These Days US Is Killing More ‘Syrian Rebels’ Than the Russians
- B-52s Speak Louder Than Words: Obama on His Way Out Admitted He Had Been Wrong on Syria All Along
“We are working closely [with the UN Secretary General] to put pressure on Russia. That was a major purpose of the trip last week and I think it is having some effect.”
“Generally they [Turks] support the opposition as do we.”
It is also threatening to perhaps once again cruise missile the Syrians if al-Qaeda and friends deliver a servicable casus belli.
Meanwhile Russian special forces have been filmed on the front lines vs al-Qaeda:
A video footage was published by the Russian News-Front TV channel shows several soldiers of the Russian special forces being deployed to the front-lines in al-Ghab Plain in northern Hama countryside.
The Russian soldiers were seen walking alongside Syrian troops just 300m away from militants’ positions in al-Ghab Plain.
They are tasked with monitoring and observing jihadist rebels movements and positions in bid to coordinate attacks with the Russian air force.
Север провинции Хама в объективе наших корреспондентов
Ещё несколько фотографий из центра города Кафр Набуда от наших корреспондентов. pic.twitter.com/2yaAk1OWE1
— ANNA-News (@annanews_info) May 26, 2019