"And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness, the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us. But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a Thief in a jail is safe from another thief. "

Khalil Gibran (How I Became a Madman)



Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Deir Hafer to Jirah Airbase (May 16, 2017): East Aleppo- Syrian War Update- Al-Masdar News

BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:45 P.M.) – In hindsight, the pro-government operations in the eastern Aleppo countryside which have been taking place since late-January 2017, can be divided into at least two greater missions so far. The first mission, which was covered two months ago by OZ Analysis, was the offensive action to seal the frontline with Turkey-led forces and reach the Euphrates. The second mission has been to purge ISIS from the steppeland of Deir Hafer, in preparation for a greater offensive – represented by a third stage – to secure the Maskanah Plains and link up with Syrian Democratic Forces in the area of Tabqah.
Beginning on March 13th, the Syrian Arab Army, backed up by the elite Tiger Forces, commenced the operation to outflank ISIS forces in the area of the strategic town of Deir Hafer, followed by a rapid drive in the direction of the Jirah Airbase, from both the northern and eastern directions.
Within twenty days of its assault, the Syrian Army encircled Deir Hafer and reached the outskirts of the Jirah Airbase from the west, north and east. Due to heavy mining of the town by ISIS, Deir Hafer would not be entered into for well over a week.
Only after specialist de-mining teams of both the Syrian Army and the Russian Ground Forces cleared Deir Hafer of landmines and IEDs could the town be entered into and declared liberated.
Meanwhile a spring offensive launched by Jihadist-Islamist forces in Northern Hama, led to the the bulk of Tiger Forces stationed in East Aleppo being relocated. Over the next month, the Tiger Forces – in support of other pro-government outfits – systemically annihilated a massive terrorist salient which jutted in the direction of the city of Hama.
Although the Northern Hama counteroffensive served as a distraction for pro-government operations in Aleppo Province, the Tiger Forces would nonetheless return to the Deir Hafer front within ten days of concluding their operations in Hama and to this end the Jirah Airbase was the next objective. Beginning from the 9th of May, the Tiger Forces made concentric attacks to outflank the airbase, although, the real emphasis of the assault came from the western direction. Under this pressure, ISIS withdrew from the airbase.
y the 12th of May, the Syrian Army secured the Jirah Airbase and a subsequent ISIS counter-attack on the 13th of May was firmly rebuffed by the Tiger Forces.