Publications

Russian Airstrikes in Syria: April 30 - May 26, 2016

May 28, 2016 - Genevieve Casagrande
Russia has continued its air campaign against the Syrian opposition, despite its claims to temporarily suspend airstrikes against Syrian al Qaeda-affiliate Jabhat al Nusra and the opposition.

ISIS Forecast: Ramadan 2016

May 27, 2016 - Jessica D. Lewis

The next forty-five days constitute a high-risk period for a surge of attacks by ISIS during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. ISIS traditionally uses Ramadan – which begins on June 6 and ends on July 5, 2016 - as a justification for its attacks and as an occasion to reorient its strategy.

Syria Situation Report: May 21 - 27, 2016

May 27, 2016 - Chris Kozak

ISIS conducted an unprecedented series of complex suicide attacks in regime-held Tartus City and Jableh on the Syrian Coast on 23 MAY, killing at least 150 civilians and wounding over 200 others. ISIS will likely escalate its attacks against Alawites on the Syrian Coast during the upcoming holy month of Ramadan. Meanwhile, ISIS seized at least six villages in Northern Aleppo Province in a major setback for efforts by the U.S. and Turkey to deny ISIS access to the Syrian-Turkish Border.

Fallujah Control of Terrain Map: May 26, 2016

May 27, 2016 - Patrick Martin

The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and the Popular Mobilization launched a major operation on May 23 to recapture Fallujah from ISIS. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced Operation Breaking Terrorism late on May 22 following weeks of force build-up in the area.

Fallujah Control of Terrain Map: Prior to May 23, 2016

May 27, 2016 - Patrick Martin

The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and the Popular Mobilization launched a major operation on May 23 to recapture Fallujah from ISIS. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced Operation Breaking Terrorism late on May 22 following weeks of force build-up in the area.

The Campaign for Fallujah: May 26, 2016

May 27, 2016 - Patrick Martin

The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and the Popular Mobilization launched a major operation on May 23 to recapture Fallujah from ISIS. Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced Operation Breaking Terrorism late on May 22 following weeks of force build-up in the area.

ISIS Sanctuary Map: May 25, 2016

May 25, 2016 - Harleen Gambhir

ISIS lost terrain in Iraq but claimed an attack from a new governorate, Wilayat Sahel, on the northwestern coast of Syria deep in regime territory. ISIS militants launched complex suicide attacks in core regime territory in Tartus City and Jableh on May 23, 2016. ISIS will likely escalate attacks against Alawite communities on the Syrian Coast in order to exacerbate sectarian tensions during Ramadan.

Iraq Situation Report: May 11-24, 2016

May 25, 2016 - Patrick Martin

The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), Popular Mobilization, and tribal fighters launched a major operation to retake Fallujah on May 23. The joint force quickly recaptured northern terrain on the first day, including Garma District, a historic hotbed for Sunni extremists including ISIS’s predecessor Al Qaeda in Iraq.

ISW Tracking of Iraq’s 2016 Political Crisis

May 24, 2016 - John Lawrence

Updated on May 24: Iraq’s Federal Court will issue an important ruling on May 25 that could have a major impact on the political crisis. The issues at stake are the legitimacy of Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi’s ministerial appointments and the speakership of the Council of Representatives. This page provides a comprehensive collection of ISW reporting and analysis of this political crisis, which ISW has covered since it began.

Russia and Turkey Escalate: Russia’s Threat to NATO Goes Beyond Eastern Europe

May 23, 2016 - Chris Kozak

Russia is waging a multi-front campaign against Turkey in order to weaken NATO in line with its strategic objectives. The use of a high-end Soviet-era MANPADS against a Turkish helicopter in southeastern Turkey on May 13 could indicate that Russia is providing meaningful military support to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) insurgency. The incident, if indeed an escalation by Russia, is yet another infringement of a sovereign NATO partner.

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