DAMASCUS, SYRIA (1:10 A.M.) – Over the past 48 hours, elements of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) have liberated a number of sites on the outskirts of Palmyra, thereby establishing a buffer zone around the ancient city.

Following the capture of the Palmyra Silos, the Mustadirah Mountains, Wadi Al-Ahmar area, Sabhkat Al-Muh groves, Electrical Grid Station and Mustadirah Gas Fields, the SAA has now reached the Talilah Crossroad which is expected to fall shortly.

Momentarily, SAA forward units east of Palmyra are roughly 157 kilometers from linking up with Deir Ezzor. However, one must take into consideration that the SAA has advanced 70 kilometers since being pushed back to Tiyas (T4) Airbase two months ago.

In addition, the eastern Homs region is composed of sparsely populated ISIS-held desert territory. With little to no civilians in the way, Russian warplanes are able to strike ISIS insurgents without worrying about collateral damage in the process.

Leading this daunting task of an offensive is the newly formed Russian-trained 5th Legion, elements of the 18th Tank Division, Military Shield Forces, Al-Badia branch, National Defence Forces, Shaitat tribesmen, a unit of Hezbollah fighters and some pro-government Iraqi paramilitary contingents.

However, with a massive government salient running along the Homs-Palmyra highway and soon extending even further eastwards, the SAA must pursue moves to safeguard its flanks, possibly with a simultaneous eastern Hama offensive.

For the Deir Ezzor liberation offensive to succeed, Kurdish forces are also required to speed up their offensive towards Raqqa, thereby forcing the Islamic State to relocate militants from eastern Homs to the defense of its capital.

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Next up, Syrian government forces will try to capture Arak, a key town along the M-20 highway between Palmyra and Deir Ezzor.

Deir Ezzor is split in two government pockets, one around the city’s western neighborhoods and another at Deir Ezzor Airbase. The eastern city has been under siege for the past three years; recently, ISIS has intensified its attacks on the embattled city in a bid to free up jihadist troops for collapsing frontlines elsewhere.

Al-Masdar News cannot confirm whether the SAA’s Military High Command has given the green light to embark upon a campaign to liberate beleaguered Deir Ezzor or not. Historically, Long-term SAA plans have often changed in reaction to other events.

A larger HD map can be found here.

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Student currently living in Denmark. Special focus on news from Syria, MENA map-making and strategical military analysis.

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It seems something unexpected gonna happen. Lift the siege of Deir Ezzor please. Do not forget its oppressed people.

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I would secure road 90 and 45 first and all the nearby mountains first.

Daeshbags Sux
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Daeshbags Sux

Such salient should be prepared alike the Kursk battle

The Smart Guy
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Excellent news. Hopefully the SAA can simultaneously support the Deir ez Zor garrison in finally breaking the double siege. I believe the 154 km push is very much possible, but only if the SAA secures one of the flanks from Tiyas to Palmyra. Logically, the southern flank is a lot easier to clear up. The SAA should launch a multiple pronged offensive to take everything from Al Busayri to Qasr Halabat as well as securing Highway 90 and all the hill tops as well. From that development, the SAA would only have to focus on defending ISIL infiltraters from the… Read more »
Daeshbags Sux
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Best defence is attack-Julius Caesar

Bohuslav Vorel
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Bohuslav Vorel

Who will be quicklier? Deir ez Zor Military Council, SAA or … does anybody know who Revolution Commando / Maghwar al-Thawra capturing big part of desert from Daesh really is?

joe
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joe

hopefully isis is removed soon

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