January 20, 2013 |
BEIRUT - Syrian troops fought intense battles Saturday against rebels trying to capture two military bases in the northwest in order to step up their attacks on army compounds elsewhere in the country, activists said. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the Local Coordination Committees said the rebels destroyed at least one tank near the town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province. The rebels, who have been battling for weeks to take control of bases in Wadi Deif and Hamdiyeh, are working to cut off supply routes to the compounds, the Observatory said.
January 2, 2013 |
BEIRUT, Lebanon - Clashes between government troops and rebels on Tuesday forced the international airport in Aleppo to stop all flights in and out of Syria's largest city, while fierce battles also raged in the suburbs of the capital Damascus. The rebels have been making inroads in the civil war recently, capturing a string of military bases and posing a stiff challenge to the regime in Syria's two major cities - Damascus and Aleppo. The opposition trying to overthrow authoritarian President Bashar al-Assad has been fighting for control of Aleppo since the summer, and it has captured large swathes of territory in Aleppo province west and north of the city up to the Turkish border.
October 31, 2012 |
BEIRUT, Lebanon - Air strikes by Syrian jets and shells from tanks leveled a neighborhood Tuesday in a restive city near the capital of Damascus, killing 18 people, and at least five rebel fighters died nearby in clashes with regime troops, activists said. The air strikes on the city of Douma, northeast of the capital, left residents scampering over a huge expanse of rubble and using their hands to dig up mangled bodies, according to activist videos posted online. Scenes of vast destruction like those from Douma have grown more common as rebels seeking to topple President Bashar al-Assad have made gains on the ground and as Assad's forces have responded with overwhelming air power.
August 9, 2012 |
CAIRO - Egypt's president fired his intelligence chief on Wednesday for failing to act on an Israeli warning of an imminent attack days before extremists stormed a border post in the Sinai Peninsula and killed 16 soldiers. The dismissal, which followed Egyptian air strikes against Sinai extremists, also marked a bold attempt by the Islamist leader to deflect popular anger over the attack. It pointed to a surprising level of cooperation with the powerful military leaders who stripped the presidency of significant powers just before Mohammed Morsi took office June 30. In a major shake-up, Morsi also asked Defense Minister Hussein Tantawi to replace the commander of the military police, a force that has been heavily used to combat street protests since the ouster of Hosni Mubarak 18 months ago. Rights activists have accused the military police of brutality against protesters.
June 25, 2012 |
Kofi Annan, who's been assigned the hopeless task of resolving the Syrian crisis by diplomacy, is calling for "concerned nations" — including Russia and Iran — to confer this week in Geneva. I sympathize with Annan, now the special Syria envoy of the United Nations and the Arab League. The Bosnian and Rwandan genocides happened while he was head of U.N. peacekeeping, and he desperately wants to prevent further slaughter in Syria. "The longer we wait, the darker Syria's future becomes," he rightly said last week, in a plea for key countries to develop a peace plan.
October 22, 2011 |
WASHINGTON - With the end of the Libya mission in sight, U.S. officials were looking ahead to where they might shift American aircraft and drones that have played a role there for seven months, right through to the assault on Moammar Gadhafi's convoy. And they were looking toward the formation of a stable Libyan nation, despite worries about the difficulties of forming disparate rebel groups into a unified government. As international leaders tried to sort out the details of the ousted Libyan leader's death, U.S. officials confirmed on Friday that an American Predator drone took part in the air strike that hit Gadhafi's convoy.
September 19, 2011
Aw, come on. Fess up. You know you've done it when nobody's looking - stood in front of a mirror and conducted your favorite Mahler or, at least, played air guitar. In 2007, Xavier Le Roy turned his "conducting" of a recording of Le Sacre du Printemps into a marvelous dance performance. He's taken this concept to another level with More Mouvements , not so much choreographing on the musicians in the piece, but allowing the music (or the score) to impel the movement, which looks more like pantomime than dance, especially when the instruments have gone missing and/or are hidden with musical doubles playing them behind screens.
March 30, 2011 |
RAS LANOUF, Libya - Moammar Gadhafi's forces hammered rebels with tanks and rockets, turning their rapid advance into a panicked retreat in an hours-long battle Tuesday. The fighting underscored the dilemma facing the United States and its allies in Libya: Rebels may be unable to oust Gadhafi militarily unless already contentious air strikes go even further in taking out his forces. Opposition fighters pleaded for strikes as they fled the hamlet of Bin Jawwad, where artillery shells crashed thunderously.
August 5, 2010 |
WASHINGTON - Gen. David H. Petraeus, commander of the Afghan war effort, has renewed orders to American troops to refrain from calling in artillery or air power when battling Taliban forces unless they are certain that no civilians are present. Petraeus' order, the first since he assumed command last month from ousted Gen. Stanley McChrystal, was an effort to fine-tune a McChrystal directive that had angered some U.S. troops, who said the restrictions on the use of artillery and air power exposed them to greater danger.
April 29, 1999 |
Gov. Ridge, who fought in Vietnam as an infantryman, criticized NATO and the Clinton administration for not using ground troops in Kosovo. In response to questions during an interview Tuesday, Ridge said there was "no possible, conceivable way" to stop the Serbs' ethnic cleansing with air power alone. "I think we've backed into something pretty horrible. And we've made the situation worse rather than better," said the governor, who served as an infantry staff sergeant in Vietnam from November 1969 to May 1970.