ISIS agreed to remove explosives from around the dam and leave its heavy weapons behind, a US official explained...
A statement put out by Operation Inherent Resolve Wednesday called the end of the battle a “forced withdrawal” but didn’t spell out the details of how it came about. Instead, the release focused on the humanitarian aspect of the withdrawal: “The SDF accepted ISIS's surrender of the city to protect innocent civilians and to protect the [Tabqa] dam infrastructure which hundreds of thousands of Syrians rely on for water, agriculture, and electricity.”
It is unclear how many ISIS fighters died during the battle of Tabqa.
How many ISIS fighters died in Tabqa? Enough that the survivors wanted to live to see another season of “The Apprentice,” apparently. But whatever the circumstances, blowing Tabqa’s dam on the Euphrates River could have spelled widespread humanitarian disaster, and now that’s not gonna be a thing.
Damn. That's a big dam.
National security analysts are already trying to play four-dimensional chess with this new ISIS tactic of surrendering. What could it portend for the upcoming battle royale to liberate Raqqa, the Islamists’ nearby capital? It seems to undercut their brand as a global caliphate bursting forth with disciplined shaheeds ready to sacrifice themselves for the cause at a moment’s notice.
But the group’s unpredictability — and the probable magnitude of the U.S.-led coalition’s upcoming siege on Raqqa — suggest that its fighters might give up ground now for another chance to feel the morning sun on their faces… er, I mean, for a longer asymmetric struggle.
“ISIS intends to lose the terrain in such a way that the population is more tolerant of ISIS over time,” Jenny Cafarella of the generally hawkish Institute for the Study of War told Buzzfeed. “The fall of Raqqa doesn’t mean ISIS is on its heels, especially if ISIS chooses to abandon the city to preserve strength.”
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Karl Munson pilots a 26-foot boat while Petty Officer 2nd Class Gabriel Diaz keeps an eye on a boarding team who is inspecting a 79-foot shrimp boat in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of New Orleans, La., on April 27, 2005
Radio transmissions to the U.S. Coast Guard are usually calls for help from boaters, but one captain got on the radio recently just to say thanks to the men and women who are currently working without pay.
DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump traveled to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware on Saturday to receive the remains of four Americans killed in a suicide bombing in northern Syria.
Trump, locked in a battle with congressional Democrats that has led to a nearly month-long partial government shutdown, announced his trip via a pre-dawn tweet, saying he was going "to be with the families of 4 very special people who lost their lives in service to our Country!"
Former President George W. Bush is calling for an end to the partial government shutdown, which is about to hit the one-month mark and is currently the longest shutdown in US history.
In an appeal made on Instagram, the 43rd president called on "leaders on both sides to put politics aside, come together, and end this shutdown." The caption was posted with an image of him and former First Lady Laura Bush giving pizza to their Secret Service detail.