— New York Times World (@nytimesworld) 14. januar 2016
Saudi Arabia considers selling shares in oil giant Aramco.
Hezbollah is receiving heavy weapons directly from Russia, field commanders say.
40.000 Sunni soldiers will join the Popular Mobilization Units, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announces.
Turkey: 200 ISIS fighters killed in Iraq and Syria in retaliation for Istanbul attack.
After delivering humanitarian assistance to besieged Syrian town of Madaya, U.N. officials describe “horrible, terrible” conditions.
The Arab Winter | The Economist
Five years after a wave of uprisings, the Arab world is worse off than ever. But its people understand their predicament better
How Assad Is Using Sieges and Hunger to Grab More of the ‘Useful Syria’ | By Sam Heller, Vice News
The regime has systematically encircled, blockaded and bombed the remaining pockets of rebel control in the west, from the capital Damascus up through the city of Homs to the Mediterranean coast. Now the exhausted residents of these rebel enclaves – denied regular access to food and medical supplies for months or even years – are increasingly agreeing to one-sided settlements with the regime in exchange for relief and an end to the violence.
Blurred Future | By Nour Samaha, Newsweek
Earlier this month, under the cover of rain and thick fog, several Hezbollah fighters snuck across the Lebanese border into the mountainous terrain of the Israeli-occupied Shebaa Farms.
Their mission was clear: To plant an improvised explosive device, (IED), on a road frequented by Israeli military personnel and vehicles. As an Israeli patrol passed, the IED detonated, causing damage to a Humvee and an armored D9 bulldozer, injuring those inside it.
Hezbollah claimed responsibility and the operation was seen as a response to Israel’s assassination of Hezbollah military commander Samir Al Kantar on December 19, on the outskirts of Damascus. An Israeli air strike had targeted a high-rise building in the Jarmana district, where Kantar was staying.
For Hezbollah, but perhaps more so for the Syrian government, Kantar’s assassination and his role in Syria are part and parcel of a much larger picture that’s being played out; the ongoing war with Israel over the occupied Golan Heights and the race against time to halt the changing realities on the ground.