News

National Security & Defense

U.S.-Backed Forces Announce Offensive against Last ISIS Strongholds

Fighters with the Syrian Democratic Forces in Deir al-Zor, Syria, May 1, 2018. (Rodi Said/Reuters)

U.S.-backed local forces on Tuesday announced a new offensive intended to drive the Islamic State (ISIS) from its last strongholds in northeast Syria.

The mostly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), aided by the U.S., will attack ISIS in the Middle Euphrates River Valley.

“We continue to stand alongside our partners and ensure the liberation of all terrain held by ISIS terrorists,” read a statement from Major General James Jarrard, commander of the Special Operations Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve. “This is a key milestone in bringing lasting stability to both Iraq and Syria.”

The SDF last October dealt a devastating blow to ISIS, driving the terror group from Raqqa, its self-proclaimed capital.

“The days of ISIS controlling territory and terrorizing the people of Syria are coming to an end,” said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert in a statement. “The fighting will be difficult, but we and our partners will prevail.”

Much of the Kurdish contingent of the U.S.-backed local forces left last year to help their fellow Kurds, who came under attack from Turkish forces. Turkey finally seized the area, though, and Kurdish fighters have started returning to fight the small cadre of ISIS fighters left near the border between Syria and Iraq.

“Over the coming weeks, our heroic forces will liberate these areas, secure the Iraq-Syria border, and end the presence of ISIS in eastern Syria once and for all,” the SDF said in a statement on Tuesday.

“They are in their last strongholds now, and these contain a big number of jihadis. We know there will be a higher number of suicide attacks, of car bombs, and of the explosives that they have planted,” said Kino Gabriel, a spokesman for SDF.

President Trump has made clear that he wants to pull U.S. troops out of Syria as soon as it is stable enough to do so.

Most Popular

Elections

Good Riddance to Kamala Harris

Per Edward-Isaac Dovere, Kamala Harris is no longer running for president. This is excellent, welcome news -- the cause for celebration. Good riddance! May Harris's failed attempt to find higher office destroy her career and sully her reputation for all time. I'm told that I'm not supposed to feel like this -- ... Read More
Elections

Good Riddance to Kamala Harris

Per Edward-Isaac Dovere, Kamala Harris is no longer running for president. This is excellent, welcome news -- the cause for celebration. Good riddance! May Harris's failed attempt to find higher office destroy her career and sully her reputation for all time. I'm told that I'm not supposed to feel like this -- ... Read More
Elections

Kamala Harris, the Juggernaut Who Flopped

Before reports emerged that Kamala Harris is dropping out of the presidential race, she was trailing Mike Bloomberg in her bid to be the Democratic nominee for the president, and stood at 2 percent in the latest national Harris–The Hill poll released Monday. On paper, Kamala Harris was a strong candidate for ... Read More
Elections

Kamala Harris, the Juggernaut Who Flopped

Before reports emerged that Kamala Harris is dropping out of the presidential race, she was trailing Mike Bloomberg in her bid to be the Democratic nominee for the president, and stood at 2 percent in the latest national Harris–The Hill poll released Monday. On paper, Kamala Harris was a strong candidate for ... Read More
Culture

A Tyrannical Minority and Silent Majority

As I noted Monday on the Corner, British journalist James Kirkup has done a great public service in sharing a document that helps explain how the transgender movement, which many privately admit has overreached and is unconvincing, has been so successful so quickly. The document was produced by a major ... Read More
Culture

A Tyrannical Minority and Silent Majority

As I noted Monday on the Corner, British journalist James Kirkup has done a great public service in sharing a document that helps explain how the transgender movement, which many privately admit has overreached and is unconvincing, has been so successful so quickly. The document was produced by a major ... Read More