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Syria, Russia break ISIS siege in Deir Ez-Zor

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The Syrian Arab Army just won a major morale boosting victory in their fight against terrorism. Since the onset of the Syrian Civil War Deir ez-Zor or has seen war. Initially, the fighting was between government forces and various terrorist groups, most notably the FSA. But in April of 2014, the Islamic State launched a major offensive, eventually whipping out the moderate terrorists in the region. Since then ISIS has established a siege on the SAA 137th Brigade in Deir ez-Zor. It has since remained as one of the few government strongholds in east Syria.

In my previous piece on the Syrian Civil War, I noted how the SAA was focused on cleaning up central Syria in what seemed like a brief pause on the route to lift their besieged people. However within the last few days, Syria and Russia have launched a major offensive to reach the 137th Brigade.

Figure 1: Deir ez-Zor September 2nd, 2017

Figure one shows the preparation for the major offensive. The SAA Tiger Forces are advancing north of the highway while SAA and even Russian SOF are advancing on the highway. The battle is audible to the besieged Syrians.

Figure 2: Deir ez-Zor September 3rd, 2017 SAA and allies make significant gains.

Syria and its allies were successful with both advances in lifting the siege. However ISIS prepares a major counteroffensive from the south. The Islamic State recaptures much of the SAA gains along the highway. In the meantime, the distance between the 137th Brigade and the SAA Tiger forces becomes the main focus for the SAA and Russia.

Figure 3: Deir ez-Zor September 4th, 2017, Islamic State launches counter offensive

With Russia and Syria consolidating their advance on reaching the 137th Brigade, the Islamic State advances their counter offensive. Heavy fighting takes place with both sides putting everything they got in to it. The SAA turns 5km in to 4km into 3km, steadily closing the gap. On September 5, the Syrian state TV announced that the siege has been lifted.

Figure 4: Deir ez-Zor September 5th, 2017, SAA and allies lift the siege

An estimated 120,000 people are no longer surrounded by ISIS. SAA forces reunite with their 137th Brigade. Dozens of military vehicles enter the formerly besieged area to reinforce their fight to take back the rest of the city. Currently the SAA is trying to keep the momentum high by recapturing their positions south along the highway with the assistance of Russian cruise missiles.

This is the most decisive victory for Assad and Syria since winning the Siege of Aleppo. While the SAA was advancing to rescue its people, Assad and his regime were making it known that they were not forgotten. Assad perfectly hyped this victory to get as much of a morale boost as he could. Russian President Vladimir Putin congratulated Assad over the phone.

The Islamic State’s days in Syria are becoming numbered. The SAA dedicated a massive portion of their forces on this campaign. With these forces still heavily concentrated in the area, the SAA will likely lay siege to ISIS in the rest of Deir ez-Zor. Urban warfare has proved deadly and slow throughout the wars waged against ISIS. Unfortunately for Syria, ISIS still has several towns and cities along the Euphrates River to both the north and the south. But for now, ISIS is rendered a major defeat.

Guns and Crime

ICE gets media beating for taking illegal immigrant into custody over Mexican homicide warrant

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ICE gets media beating for taking illegal immigrant into custody over Mexican homicide warrant

It’s the type of story the media craves. An illegal immigrant, Joel Arrona-Lara, who “hasn’t done anything wrong” was detained by ICE agents while transporting his pregnant wife to the hospital. She ended up having to drive herself the rest of the way before delivering their son.

The spin is predictable. They skim over the fact that he has an arrest warrant in Mexico for homicide while putting all the focus on his wife’s dilemma. They even attempt to cast doubt on the warrant because the lawyer for the family says he couldn’t find a record of the warrant. This last part is most peculiar because it would be simple for a major media outlet to confirm the existence of the warrant. They did, of course, but they won’t report that when they have a better quote from the lawyer denying its existence.

Eventually details will emerge about the warrant, but not until the media inflicts as much damage as possible on ICE and anyone in favor of legal immigration being the proper way to enter the country.

Here’s the story. If you click through, you’ll even get a link at the bottom to the family’s new GoFundMe page:

ICE Detains Man Driving Pregnant Wife To Deliver Baby, Says He Is Wanted For Homicide In Mexico

https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2018/08/18/joel-arrona-detained-by-ice-san-bernardino-driving-wife-to-deliver-baby/Her husband Joel Arrona-Lara was driving his wife to the hospital for a scheduled Cesarean section Wednesday afternoon when they had to stop to get gas. That’s when their car was approached by two SUVs. Maria said they were officers with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The mother of five was then asked to show her identification and complied. When the agents asked Arrona-Lara, the couple said he didn’t have the ID on him, but that they lived nearby and could go get it for them. The agents then asked Arrona-Lara to exit the vehicle, searched the car for weapons, and put Arrona into custody, leaving Maria alone at the gas station.

My take

There’s no doubt the circumstances surrounding all of this are unfortunate. Pregnant wives should not have to drive themselves to the hospital for a scheduled C-section. On the other hand, suspected murderers shouldn’t be entering the country in the first place. That point won’t be mentioned by mainstream media.

ICE has a responsibility to take people like Arrona-Lara into custody so it can be determined whether or not they should be deported. There may have even been a certain degree of leeway given had there been no records other than his status as an illegal immigrant, but being a suspected murderer with an arrest warrant took away any chance at leeway. The ICE agents did the right thing.

As a legal immigrant, I have no sympathy for those who cheat the system and break our laws. Blaming the ICE agents for doing their job correctly in order to keep us safe is the type of insanity mainstream media loves to sell us.

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Democrats

The real reason Ocasio-Cortez is afraid of the press

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The real reason Ocasio-Cortez is afraid of the press

For at least the second time, reporters were barred from covering an event featuring Socialist Democratic darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The campaign’s reason: we want attendees to feel comfortable since there’s so much national press covering her.

This is an absolutely ridiculous excuse, of course. Nobody goes to a campaign event without knowing the press will (should) be there. It doesn’t make them less comfortable and may actually give some a sense of security knowing the answers to their questions will be judged by more than the audience at hand. That’s one of the reasons for the press in the first place, to give information about an event to people who cannot attend.

Instead, the press is getting another roadblock:

Ocasio-Cortez bans press from covering campaign event

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/08/17/ocasio-cortez-bans-press-from-covering-campaign-event.htmlAlexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the Democratic socialist star running for New York’s 14th congressional district, is facing criticism after her campaign banned journalists from covering a town hall meeting with voters this week.

The Queens Chronicle, a local news outlet, reported that the campaign for the 28-year-old progressive prevented reporters from attending a campaign event in Corona on Sunday, even though it was open to the rest of the public. The campaign reportedly barred reporters from a prior event as well.

It’s conspicuous that a local publication was barred because it runs contrary to the narrative the campaign is trying to sell. So why is she being hidden from reporters at these types of events?

My Take

It’s clear that her exposure is her best friend and worst enemy. Being talked about is a politician’s best friend on the campaign trail, but it also offers a risk of failure. This is most common in events like the town hall meetings she is holding because she’ll be forced to think on her feet.

What if she can’t think on her feet? What if her answers when placed in an unscripted situation the type of answers many would expect from an inexperienced socialist?

Until she’s ready to handle the pressure of having press cover these events, she won’t be ready to hold public office at this level. The House of Representatives isn’t for people who need to be protected from their own answers.

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Culture and Religion

Ken Ham on how science confirms the Bible

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Ken Ham on how science confirms the Bible

One of my biggest pet peeves is the attempt by atheists to use “science” to disprove the Bible. It’s unfortunate on many levels, not the least of which being Pascal’s Wager, but the strangest part is how much of science must be ignored in order to make the claim a Biblical worldview runs counter to modern science.

Some may object to this topic being part of mostly political news site, but it’s been more widely covered in recent years by liberal sites attempting to paint the Biblical worldview in a negative light, so it’s good to give equal time to the counterarguments.

There are better videos than Ken Ham’s discussion on the topic, but few are more easily understood. It’s well worth the hour.

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