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Regional geopolitics

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  • Re: Regional geopolitics

    Originally posted by Vrej1915 View Post
    The expert also addressed the unsettled Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,
    The only part of the unsettled Artsakh conflict is regaining the northern mountainous territories all the way to the Georgian border to create a permanent security buffer to the rest of Armenia.


    • Re: Regional geopolitics

      The Syrian army and National Defense Forces (NDF) have made advances against Daesh (ISIL/ISIS) in several strategically important areas of Raqqa, Iran's Fars news agency reported on Wednesday.

      "Syrian government forces stormed the ISIL defense lines near the small town of Zahiyeh and seized back three strategic heights and several hills in the region," Fars reported.

      The army and NDF killed scores of Daesh terrorists in fierce clashes as they advanced towards three other villages around Raqqa, aided from the air by Russian and Syrian fighter jets which bombed terrorist positions near Zakiyeh.

      Fars reported that Syrian fighter jets have also bombed a Daesh training camp in the north east of Raqqa province, killing at least 33 terrorists and injuring dozens more.

      Read more:
      Hayastan or Bust.


      • Re: Regional geopolitics

        Sometimes profound tectonic shifts in the global politics arise from least noticed events. Such is the situation with Iran and the recent visit to Teheran of China’s President Xi Jinping. What emerged from the talks confirms that the vital third leg of what will become a genuine Eurasian Golden Triangle, of nations committed to peaceful economic development, is now in place. Now Iran, Russia and China have all indicated a will to cooperate that has the potential to change the current Western course of wars and destruction in favor of peace and cooperation. Consider some aspects of recent events since lifting of economic sanctions on Teheran only days ago.

        What emerges in the public announcements following talks between China’s President and all top Iranian leaders from Prime Minister Rouhani to Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, merely hints at what is clearly a profound shift in the relations between China and Iran. On January 23, an official Chinese Xinhua news agency statement on Xi’s Iran trip, the first by any Chinese leader in fourteen years, declared the visit will, “lift their ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership.” In Teheran the Chinese President noted, “China stands ready to work with Iran to seize the momentum and further elevate our relationship and practical cooperation, so as to usher in a new chapter for our ties featuring comprehensive, long-term and stable development.”

        Developing the economic fibers

        The content of that cooperation is of a major geopolitical and geo-economical importance for not merely Eurasia, but for the world. Iran has just formally requested to join the world’s most important infrastructure project, China’s One Belt, One Road initiative, often called the New Silk Road Economic Initiative. The New Silk Road initiative was first proposed during a September 2013 meeting in Astana between Xi and Nursultan Nazarbayev, the President of Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan today is also a member with Russia of the Eurasian Economic Union and also of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Keep these various threads of an evolving economic fiber in mind as we proceed.

        Since that initial 2013 discussion in Astana, the One Belt, One Road has begun to transform the political and economic map of all Eurasia. Last year in talks in Moscow just prior to the May 9 Russian Victory Day celebrations, where Xi was a specially honored guest, Vladimir Putin announced that the Eurasian Economic Union–Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan–will formally integrate its own infrastructure development with China’s New Economic Silk Road.

        Now the formal addition of Iran to the expanding Eurasian Silk Road is a giant positive step. It will allow Iran to break years of economic isolation and Western sanctions, and to do so over land where NATO color revolutions and other shenanigans are rendered largely impotent. It will open for the rest of Eurasia, especially China, but also Russia, vast new economic potentials.

        Iran’s extraordinary resources

        Iran has a young, educated population of more than 80 million, more than half under 35 years old, and a strategic land expanse twice the size of the state of Texas. It has the ninth highest literacy rate in the world–82% of the adult population, and 97% among young adults between 15 and 24 without gender discrepancy. Iran has 92 universities, 512 online University branches, and 56 research and technology institutes around the country with almost four million university students, one million of them medical students. One third or 31% are studying in Engineering and construction programs, one of the highest rates in the world. Iran today is not the primitive backwater many American policymakers imagine it to be. I’ve witnessed that first hand.

        The country has also been blessed with vast undeveloped economic resources, not only its huge reserves of oil and natural gas. It is situated adjacent to Armenia and Azerbaijan on the north, Afghanistan and Pakistan on the east, and Iraq and Turkey on the west. The Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman lie south, and the Caspian Sea—the largest inland body of water in the world—lies to the north, giving Iran most of the water needed for its agriculture.

        In terms of other natural resources it has one of the world’s largest copper reserves, as well as bauxite, coal, iron ore, lead, and zinc. Iran also has valuable deposits of aluminum, chromite, gold, manganese, silver, tin, and tungsten, as well as various gemstones, such as amber, agate, lapis lazuli, and turquoise. It’s a beautiful, rich country, as I can personally attest.

        Now, by connecting the country to the expanding network of high-speed rail infrastructure in Eurasia’s One Belt, One Road, Iran’s future will become firmly tied to the most vibrant economic space on the planet–Eurasia–from the Pacific to India to Russia and, whenever the EU decides to stop being suicidal vassals to a Washington gone mad, also to Europe.

        Notably, the peaceful economic relations between Iran and China go back some 2,000 years, when Persia was a key part of the ancient Silk Road trade route from China to the west. That fact was underscored by President XI. For the past six years, China has been Iran’s largest trading partner, which, despite western sanctions, reached $52 billion in 2014. That is now set to vastly increase, as Western sanctions are gone.

        Iran as NATO pawn?

        There are some who have speculated in recent months that, with US sanctions now lifted, Iran will become a pawn of Washington geopolitical games. While the Obama Administration clearly would relish the prospect, it will not happen. A recent event that has been covered up in Western, especially USA media coverage, illustrates Iran’s clear intent to defend its autonomy and sovereignty, much as her allies China and Russia do, all to the chagrin of NATO and the Pentagon.

        In early January Iran seized two US Navy small ships that had violated its territorial waters in the Persian Gulf. They were captured and boarded and the 10 sailors on board taken into custody before being released, unharmed, allowed to continue their journey in their own boats. Their boats had “wandered” into Iranian territorial waters around Farsi Island.

        US Defense Secretary Ash Carter claimed it was “apparently” because of mechanical and navigational failure. Farsi is the home base for the naval wing of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, in the center of the Gulf. Rear Admiral Ali Fadavi, the commander of the naval branch of the Revolutionary Guard, publicly agreed with Carter, stating to press, “They were positioned in that area due to the failure of their navigation systems and they were not aware of being close to Farsi Island.”

        Admiral Ali Fadavi was being diplomatic and more than a bit coy. Farsi Island is one of the most strategic bases in Iran, home to Iran’s maritime unconventional warfare force. The US claims that their two boats “lost” their GPS satellite abilities at precisely the same time, and the Secretary of Defense claims that he isn’t sure what happened? That the two boats also lost radio communication and all other communication during the incident, is a huge embarrassment for the US Navy, who only recently described Iran as an “ox-cart technology culture.”

        The loss of all communication equipment and GPS systems on two US Navy boats at the same time means one thing: Iran has developed highly sophisticated electronic means to blind the GPS guidance systems essential to all operations of the world’s most powerful navy. Iran is no ox cart technology culture. In cooperation with Russia and Syria in the war to defeat ISIS, Iran has demonstrated it is no push-over as was Saddam Hussein’s Iraq in 2003. And, despite years of US sanctions, Iran today in military terms is not comparable to Iran during the US-instigated Iran-Iraq war in the 1980’s.

        The recent incident recalls the event on December 4, 2011 when a US a Lockheed Martin RQ-170 Sentinel spy drone, the premier spy drone in the US fleet, crashed into the Iranian countryside. Iran claimed its electronic warfare unit brought the plane down. Washington laughed. Iran was right. They didn’t just down the aircraft, they took control of it mid-flight: “Using its knowledge of the frequency Iran initiated its ‘electronic ambush’ by jamming the bird’s communications frequencies, forcing it into auto-pilot. By putting noise [jamming] on the communications, you force the bird into autopilot. This is where the bird loses its brain.’” Iran managed to guide the drone to a peaceful landing inside Iran with the drone “believing” it was Afghanistan. This most recent Iranian capture of two US Navy boats well in Iranian waters by sophisticated electronic jamming says that Iran is hardly bowing before the temple of Washington power. She has become a very formidable military force. This ability for self-defense is very important in today’s hostile world.

        SCO membership

        Now, with Iran a formal partner in the Eurasian New Silk Road infrastructure development, and with US sanctions finally lifted, Iran will certainly be formally admitted as a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization at their next annual meeting this summer. Iran currently has SCO Observer status.

        Presently SCO members include China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and most recently, India and Pakistan.

        In coming months the SCO, if present dynamics continue, will form the seed crystal of an emerging unified Eurasia, cooperating economically, politically, and importantly, militarily, as well as in counter-terrorism. It will tend to become the forum where vital issues among all SCO member nations will be worked out, as the Chinese are fond of saying, on a “win-win” manner.

        We’re seeing the emergence of a true Eurasian Golden Triangle with China, Russia and Iran as the three key points. With the stated plan to route the Silk Road rail infrastructure to assist the mining of new gold for currency backing of the Eurasian member states, including now Iran with its significant own unexploited gold, the hyper-inflated, debt-bloated dollar system is gaining a formidable positive alternative, one committed to peace and development. Isn’t that a nice prospect?

        F. William Engdahl is strategic risk consultant and lecturer, he holds a degree in politics from Princeton University and is a best-selling author on oil and geopolitics, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.

        Sometimes profound tectonic shifts in the global politics arise from least noticed events. Such is the situation with Iran and the recent visit to Teheran
        Hayastan or Bust.


        • Re: Regional geopolitics

          Originally posted by Vrej1915 View Post
          Kurdish state plan to remap Middle East – Armenian analyst

          “The Kurdish state plan is inevitable, and it brings to light the Armenian Cause and ...

          The Kurdish plan to create an independent state will reshape the Middle East map, bringing to light also the Armenian issue, says an Armenian analyst.

          “The Kurdish state plan is inevitable, and it brings to light the Armenian Cause and the land issue. The Armenian Cause is not something we have invented ourselves; neither are we using it. Whenever we are silent, doing nothing, we find ourselves in the loser’s role,” Ara Papyan, the president of the analytical center Modus Vivendi, told reporters on Wednesday.
          Finally the obvious is stated.
          Should be made clear from the outset ... We don't forget, haven't forgotten , the genocide and massacres by the willing kerd or turc.
          It's western Armenia, no matter the murdering thieves are there now.
          Commenting on regional developments, the expert called attention to the railway project expected to connect Armenia with Georgia, Nakicevan and Iran. He stressed the need for the Armenian authorities to collaborate with the United States, China, Russia and Iran for realizing the plan.

          The expert also addressed the unsettled Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, ruling out the country’s direct involvement in the current peace process. Papyan said he sees that possibility exhausting itself over the course of time.
          Originally posted by Azad View Post
          The only part of the unsettled Artsakh conflict is regaining the northern mountainous territories all the way to the Georgian border to create a permanent security buffer to the rest of Armenia.
          I believe our gvt has made clear the next time around is the last for baboons. It's the end of baboonistan as they know it.
          I fully agree on the entire mountain range to Georgia. Still would like to see a connect from there to Russia.


          • Re: Regional geopolitics

            Originally posted by Artashes View Post
            I believe our gvt has made clear the next time around is the last for baboons. It's the end of baboonistan as they know it.
            I fully agree on the entire mountain range to Georgia. Still would like to see a connect from there to Russia.
            The shortest route for now it is from South Ossetia to the predominantly Armenian region of Akhalkaki. Unfortunately the Georgians have a turkified mentality.

            See map

            Click image for larger version

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            • Re: Regional geopolitics

              DEAR FRIENDS. IF YOU LIKE THIS TYPE OF CONTENT, SUPPORT SOUTHFRONT WORK: PayPal: [email protected] Donation alerts: Gumroad: Or...


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              During the video production, Southfront: Analysis & Intelligence also recieved information that at least one Saudi motorized brigade equipped with about 90 armoured vehicles were moved to Iraqi border. This force could become a core of a joint force which could be used by the Saudi-led coalition to support Turkish military intervention to Syria.

              The military balance in Northern Syria is shifting rapidly. The Syrian Army and local militias supported by the Russian Air Force have cut terrorists from major supply lines from Turkey and almost encircled the militant forces in the Aleppo city. This has become possible due to the actions of the Russian Aerospace Defense Forces which have been destroying the terroristsí sources of funding since 2015. Thus, we could observe a breakdown on the battlefield which leads to a full collapse of the terrorists forces in Syria step by step. This also dished schemes of the foreign players interested in overthrowing of the Assad government.

              In the contemporary situation the Erdoganís regime acts as a main sponsor and creator of a terrorist threat in the Middle East. Turkey is a crucial part of terrorist logistics network which allows terrorist groups in Syria to receive arms supplies and reinforcements. The Turkish elites have a strong business ties predominantly oil smuggling with ISIS and other terrorists in Syria. The Erdoganís imperial ambitions in the Middle East also plays an important role in the conflict. Erdogan believes that a breakdown of Syria will allow him to set a protectorate or even occupy the northern part of the Arab country.

              The successes of anti-terrorist forces in Syria have destroyed a hope to realize these plans easily. Considering this, the Erdoganís regime launched preparations for a direct intervention to the country without any legal mandate. A high-level of concentration of the Turkish military are already observed in the Syrian-Turkish border by civil and military sources. Furthermore, there are irresistible videos proofs that Turkey has been conducting a series of cross-border artillery shelling violating the Syrian sovereignty.

              Experts suggest Turkey is ready to deploy some 18,000 troops with substantial artillery and air support to occupy a 30-kilometer deep territory across the border running from the city of Jarabulus westward to the city of Azaz. The operation would cover an area under ISIS control, and it would provide a direct military assistance to terrorists and facilitate establishing of a buffer zone for the vestiges of their forces in Northern Syria. It would drastically escalate the tensions with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and the predominantly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). However, the Turkish military is fully capable of completing the first move aimed to push the SAA and the SDF from the aforementioned area and occupy a significant part of Northern Syria.

              This step will likely face a hard answer of the Russian military grouping located in the country. The Russian land and navy air-defense systems and fighter jets are fully capable to neutralize the Turkish air force which will allow the Syrian government to counter-attack the Turkish intervention forces. Thus, the anti-terrorist forces will get a chance to exercise a counter-attack which will be likely supported by the Russian Aerospace Defense Forces.

              This situation leads to 2 main scenarios:

              If the SAA with support by militia forces, Iran, and Russia isnít able to push the Turkish military from Syria, the Erdoganís regime will strengthen presence at the occupied territories and use gained time to receive at least air and intelligence support by NATO. In this case, the conflict could easily lead to a global war.
              If the SAA supported by local militias, Iran, and Russia knock out the Turkish intervention forces from Syria, NATO will face the fact that Syria is de-facto liberated and the terrorists are cut from their main supplier. It could prevent a global escalation. However, the NATO countries would strengthen their presence in Iraq and use it as a foothold to launch further destructive actions against Syria. The situation will also become especially acute in Ukraine and in the Central Asia because a destabilization in these regions could be easily used against the Syriaís main allies: Russia and Iran.


              • Re: Regional geopolitics


                • Re: Regional geopolitics

                  Originally posted by Azad View Post
                  The only part of the unsettled Artsakh conflict is regaining the northern mountainous territories all the way to the Georgian border to create a permanent security buffer to the rest of Armenia.
                  I like your way of thinking


                  • Re: Regional geopolitics


                    Published time: 11 Feb, 2016 07:26Edited time: 11 Feb, 2016 11:09

                    Two US Air Force A-10 warplanes carried out airstrikes on Aleppo Wednesday, destroying nine facilities, Russia’s Defense Ministry reported. The same day, the Pentagon accused Moscow of bombing two hospitals, despite no Russian flights over the city.

                    US Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II aircrafts. © U.S. Air Force / Reuters
                    Two US Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II assault warplanes carried out
                    airstrikes on Aleppo Wednesday, destroying nine facilities, Russia's
                    Defense Ministry reported. The same day, the Pentagon accused Moscow
                    of bombing two Aleppo hospitals, while there were no Russian flights
                    over the city.

                    "Yesterday, at 13:55 Moscow time (10:55 GMT), two American A-10
                    assault aircraft entered Syrian airspace from Turkey, flew right to
                    the city of Aleppo and bombed targets there," Russian Defense Ministry
                    spokesman Igor Konashenkov said Thursday.

                    Also on Wednesday, Konashenkov recalled, the Pentagon's spokesman,
                    Colonel Steven Warren claimed that Russian warplanes allegedly bombed
                    two hospitals in Aleppo.

                    "In his words, some 50,000 Syrian have been allegedly deprived of
                    vital services," Konashenkov said, pointing out that Warren forgot to
                    mention either hospitals' coordinates, or the time of the airstrikes,
                    or sources of information. "Absolutely nothing."

                    "No Russian warplanes carried out airstrikes in Aleppo city area
                    yesterday. The nearest target engaged was over 20km away from the
                    city," Konashenkov stressed, adding that on the contrary, airplanes
                    from the US-led anti-ISIS coalition were active over Aleppo, "both
                    aircrafts and UAVs."

                    "I'm going to be honest with you: we did not have enough time to
                    clarify what exactly those nine objects bombed out by US planes
                    in Aleppo yesterday were," Konashenkov said. "We will look more

                    "The situation in and around Aleppo has become, in our view,
                    increasingly dire," Col. Steve Warren, Operation Inherent Resolve
                    spokesman, said Wednesday. "With the destruction of the two main
                    hospitals in Aleppo by Russian and regime attacks, over 50,000 Syrians
                    are now without any access to live-saving assistance."

                    Warren added, "There's little or no ISIL in the Aleppo area, so
                    they're kind of, at this point, separate fights."

                    The spokesman for the Russian Defense Ministry drew attention to the
                    stunning similarity of the situation with the American airstrike
                    on the Medecins Sans Frontieres hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan,
                    and the US bombing of the positions of the Iraqi army in Fallujah.

                    "What they do first is make unfounded accusations against us - to
                    deflect blame away from themselves. If it goes on like this, we're
                    going to make two media briefings: one for ourselves, another for
                    those coalition guys," Konashenkov said.

                    Western countries never bothered to share intelligence on terrorists
                    in Syria with Moscow, although they did accept Russian maps with
                    terrorists' positions marked, the Russian MoD's spokesman said.

                    "Now they criticize us, saying we fly wrong way and bomb wrong places.

                    Should we send them more maps?"Konashenkov questioned.

                    He recalled what the Russian Defense Ministry had pointed out earlier -
                    the more terrorists Russia destroys the more it is being accused of
                    indiscriminate airstrikes.

                    "If you look at how Western media presents information, it looks
                    like the cities not controlled by the Syrian government are full of
                    peaceful opposition and human rights activists," the spokesman said.

                    The Russian Defense Ministry and its partners in Syria operate
                    multilevel intelligence, maintaining unimpeachable target spotting,
                    the MoD representative said, adding that all airstrikes are delivered
                    only after repeated verification of a target to avoid civilian
                    casualties. Konashenkov said intelligence also comes from the armed
                    units of the Syrian opposition.

                    Konashenkov accused Western TV channels of presenting the ruins of
                    the city of Aleppo, devastated long before the Russian Air Force was
                    deployed to Syria, as the results of recent Russian airstrikes.

                    "An experienced orchestrator has a finger in this pie," the spokesman
                    said. "The obvious trend is to trumpet about alleged Russia sins and
                    be silent about the 'effectiveness' of the US-led anti-ISIS coalition
                    in Syria."

                    The Russian Air Force has performed over 500 sorties, eliminating
                    nearly 1,900 terrorist facilities in Syria between February 4 and
                    February 11. The Defense Ministry reports that two senior terrorist
                    field commanders have been killed.

                    "Over the past week, February 4-11, the planes of Russia's aviation
                    group in Syria made 510 sorties during which 1,888 facilities of
                    terrorists were destroyed in the provinces of Aleppo, Latakia, Hama,
                    Deir ez-Zor, Daraa, Homs, Al-Hasakah and Raqqah," Konashenkov said.

                    The MoD spokesman shared with the media about wholesale desertion among
                    the terrorists in Aleppo. The jihadists intimidate local civilians
                    and force them to walk en masse towards the Turkish border, while
                    the militants try to melt into the crowd.

                    "They know for sure that neither the Russian Air Force nor the
                    Syrian government troops ever deliver strikes on non-combatants,"
                    Konashenkov said.

                    Elaborating on some details of the latest Russian airstrikes in Syria,
                    he related how Sukhoi Su-25 ground-support fighters eliminated three
                    terrorist convoys on the highway connecting Homs and Al-Qaryatayn. A
                    reconnaissance check revealed that airstrikes destroyed nine trucks
                    loaded with munitions, two armored vehicles and over 40 jihadists.

                    In Daraa province, a Sukhoi Su-34 bomber wiped out a hardened terrorist
                    position near Ghariyah settlement. The strike that destroyed the
                    fortified strong point also eliminated two armored vehicles parked

                    Hayastan or Bust.


                    • Re: Regional geopolitics


                      © Sputnik/ Ilya Pitalev
                      MIDDLE EAST
                      08:52 10.02.2016(updated 09:15 10.02.2016) Get short URL

                      The Syrian Army and the National Defense Forces have reportedly managed
                      to liberate another strategic town in the western province of Latakia.

                      © AFP 2016/ GEORGE OURFALIAN Nowhere to Hide: After Freeing Aleppo
                      Syrian Army, Russian Aircraft Could Focus on Raqqa Another key town
                      has been taken back by the Syrian Army and the country's National
                      Defense Forces (NDF) after heavy fighting with militants in Latakia
                      province in western Syria, media reports said.

                      Dozens of terrorists were killed and many more wounded after the
                      Syrian troops finally took full control of the town of Bashoura,
                      located in northern Latakia, sources said. Two days ago, it had been
                      announced by Islamic Front-connected sources that Ahrar al-Sham, a
                      coalition of multiple Islamist and Salafist units, had been targeting
                      Syrian Army positions around the village.

                      The new offensive came after the Syrian Army and the NDF cleared
                      the militants out of the strategic heights of Ziyaret al-Beidha,
                      Zahra al-Beidar al-Mahrouq and Khandaq al-Shahour in Latakia.

                      © SPUTNIK/ VALERIY MELNIKOV Syrian Arab Army (SAA) soldiers

                      Earlier this week, the Syrian forces managed to win back more villages
                      and heights in northern Latakia near the border with Turkey, sources
                      said, mentioning the villages of Dahret al-Baiday al-Mahrouq and Ard
                      al-Kataf, as well as the hill of Ziyaret al-Beidha.

                      In another development, the Syrian Army continued their offensive
                      in the northern province of Aleppo, regaining full control of the
                      strategic town of Taana in the eastern part of the region.

                      The Syrian Air Force attacked terrorists' positions in the towns of
                      Hayan and Hraytan as the army continued to advance toward Tal Rafat
                      in Aleppo.

                      Scores of terrorists were killed and injured in the army's mop-up
                      operations in the newly regained towns.

                      In the countryside east of Aleppo, government troops and the NDF took
                      full control over strategic Barlaheen hilltop, after daylong clashes
                      with terrorists. The army backed by the Air Force also conducted
                      a series of attacks against Daesh militants in other parts of the
                      province, having destroyed scores of terrorists as well as some of
                      their military hardware.

                      © REUTERS/ KHALIL ASHAWI The Best is Yet to Come: Syrian Army
                      Advancing Toward City of Idlib Adding to the Syrian Army's anti-terror
                      effort is Russia's ongoing air campaign in Syria, which was launched
                      on September 30, when more than fifty Russian warplanes, including
                      Su-24M, Su-25 and Su-34 jets, commenced precision airstrikes on Daesh
                      and Al-Nusra Front targets in Syria at the behest of Syrian President
                      Bashar Assad.

                      In addition, the Russian Defense Ministry confirmed earlier this
                      month that advanced, super-maneuverable Su-35S multi-role fighters
                      had begun their combat mission in Syria.

                      Read more:
                      Hayastan or Bust.