Syrian troops attacking east to capture water treatment plant on Lake Assad

Syrian troops are heading toward the badly needed water plant…about where the faint white spot is on the right

Government troops gain more ground in Aleppo, isolation ISIS stronghold of Dier-Hafer

… from Southfront

The Lake Assad water treatment facility badly needed by Aleppo

[ Editor’s Note: We were not aware of the water plant strategic need until two days ago. This is why the SAA bypassed Deir-Hafer, not even stopping to cut the road off behind it. We have reports today also of a Syrian supply convoy that has gone into Manbij and that Syrian troops are now deploying into the buffer zone area between the Kurds and the Turks.

We have a Southfront report of some fighting with Turkish wounded, but are not sure of the location. This is a delicate balancing game going on here, where one misstep can bring it all crumbling down, with Syrians and Turks in open conflict. That would put the Russians on the spot as to providing air cover protection to the Syrians from Turkish airstrikes, and even ground attack missions if needed.

The SAA strategy seems to be encouraging the Deir-Hafer IS jihadis to retreat from the city while they still can. But that is a big gamble, as the recent IS convoy retreating east from Palmyra was completely destroyed by air attacks. The SAA will want an un-destroyed operational base in Deir-Hafer for continuing operations.

The jihadis might try to negotiate a safe passage withdrawal in return for avoiding a siege of the city that would tie up Syrian troops longer, when they have the Turks in the area with a lot of armor to be worried about. If fighting starts between them, the Turks will move as fast as they can to grab more territory before a ceasefire is called.

This whole area in the map above is a rich agricultural area with lots of orchards and irrigated water from Lake Assad. Cranking up the economy — if these recaptured areas are not totally destroyed — is key to getting some normal economy going. It will also solidify the Assad government and army support, as they are one unit at this point in the war, going into the political talks.

The people will know who pushed IS out, who made it possible to return to their homes and begin working again. This is why the opposition is trying to avoid having an election to decide the political outcome. They know they will get crushed in an election.

As I have so often said, they are only in the peace talks to try to win at the negotiation table what they lost on the battlefield. That is not something that the winners tend to do, especially when having paid a high price to winJim W. Dean ]

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This is the water plant prize on Lake Assad, a strategic need now. This also is a rich, irrigated agriculture area

– First published  …  March 06,  2017

On March 6, the Syrian army’s Tiger Forces liberated 4 villages: Tannouza, Rasm al-Hamam Miri, Ghadini and ‘Ashini. These advanes put government troops deeper to the ISIS-held area west of the Euphrates River and allowed government forces to partly isolate the ISIS stronghold of Deir Hafer.

If the Tiger Forces, backed by the Russian air power, are able to take control over the crossriad southeast of Deir Hafer, the ISIS stronghold will be de-facto cut off from the rest of the ISIS-held area in central Syria.

This will predetermine the fate of this strategic town – it will be liberated by government troops inevitably.

Click to see the full-size map

Click to see the full-size map

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5 Responses to "Syrian troops attacking east to capture water treatment plant on Lake Assad"

  1. JohninMK  March 6, 2017 at 1:56 pm

    In his comments Jim mentioned that the area to the south east of Deir Haffer is irrigated. This is one of the reasons why the SyAA advance is the shape it is. There is a large network of canals, otherwise known as water filled anti tank ditches to their western flank. This map shops it perfectly.
    https://i.imgur.com/aLehQ9o.jpg

    • Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor  March 6, 2017 at 2:36 pm

      You can crank up Google Earth and get right in there. With the commercial version you can tell whether a technical is a fifty cal or a twin 20mm…if google caught them on a good day 🙂

    • JohnZ  March 6, 2017 at 3:35 pm

      The only Google map I can get is dated 10/5/2014. Can’t seem to figure out where the water treatment plant is but no big deal.
      That is quite the dam/ water system they have. Obviously in better condition than the Oroville Dam.

    • Jim W. Dean, Managing Editor  March 7, 2017 at 8:28 am

      If you look at my top image I include the white speck of cloud over Lake Assad as it is east of where the water plant is. You have to Google Earth Deir-Hafer, follow the road east and then go up to the lake shore, and then follow it up, coordinating where you are going back and forth from a close view and wider one. There is the major feature part way up for the canal jetty that goes a 100 to 200 yards out into the lake.

    • JohnZ  March 7, 2017 at 10:00 am

      I found it. I’m ahead of you by a bit, I was listening to the Syrian war report concerning Syrian troops moving east to secure the treatment plant and lo and behold there was a map clearly showing where the plant was. I thought it might have been located at the dam site.
      dam it.

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