The development of the situation in Syria has accelerated sharply. First, Syrian troops moved to Palmyra, without encountering much resistance. The success of large-scale offensive secured airstrikes inflicted by Russian helicopters. Secondly, there was the first direct clash between Turkish troops from the Syrian government forces, that the region does not promise anything good.
Even before the government of Syria, and of the forces allied to it, "Hezbollah" took altitude Al-Tar and strength of Palmyra (with Siriyatel tower height). After that the militants LIH * began disorderly departure from the old city towards the airport and residential development of modern Tadmor (Palmyra is the part that is not an open-air museum).
Castle Mountain and were taken with little or no contact fight. However, this was preceded by massive air strikes, which were Russian VKS (especially helicopters) involved. Some sources call almost fantastic figure in 50 air strikes per hour. Who and how it felt - it is not clear, but if so, it is a virtually continuous wall of fire.
You can talk about the fact that the Syrian government army and its allies, in fact, went to Palmyra. In the northern sector of the front, they came to the village of Al-Amiriyah. In parallel, the advanced units of the Fifth legion and "Hezbollah" have penetrated into the western neighborhoods of residential development, but were stopped by two suicide bombers, to cover the retreat of militants.
At the end of a two-hour battle was engaged, and the "triangle" of roads. Palmyra was surrounded by a semicircle, from which the city center is three kilometers away, and the city's gardens - no more than one.
The general offensive of the government to stop before dark and began to strengthen its positions, fearing a possible counterattack night. In order to establish full control of fire would be nice to capture still and range of hills to the north of the city, but as militants LIH virtually no resistance, the occupation of the heights may be just a formality.
On Thursday, the Syrian military occupied the hotel area in the southern part of the city, taking possession of the building of the hotel "Dedeman". In addition, it was finally taken control of the area, where the ancient monuments. By the end of the week will start cleaning urban areas and demining. In the night-time government forces offensive conduct will not be as afraid of all sorts of traps of the enemy.
If you do not happen to any force majeure, to talk about the second release of Palmyra will be in the coming days. If we mean by Palmyra is a historic part, except Tadmor and from the definition of "liberation" subtract sweep and clear, you can talk about it now. What did Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu reported to the Supreme Commander in Chief of the completion of capture of Palmyra, which was held with the active support of the Russian Federation videoconferencing.
It seems that the jihadists pushed to the same position from which and began their assault on the Palmira a few months ago. Resist superior and - most importantly - the organized forces of Damascus, they can not, and therefore prefer to go into the desert.
Thus, the operation in Palmyra turned to LIH in a short foray, after which the situation has returned to the starting point. This foray into this at the same time demonstrated a low potential LIH and obvious weaknesses of the government army.
Now jihadists will almost certainly return to the old tactics of short "bites" on the communication lines and the government forces openly terrorist schemes.
It is fashionable to criticize the government forces for poor motivation, carelessness, complacency and a dozen other obvious sins. Even the liberation of Aleppo and present a successful and rapid advance on Palmyra not served as a success, as well as another excuse to mock the CAA. It is, they say, to fight without help can not.
Firstly, it can. It's just that "Hezbollah" works best PR service. Shiites first dumped in mass media information on the release of the fortress and the mountains Palmyra Al-Tar, leaving the impression that they have done all this for yourself alone, but it is not.
Secondly, to put together a multiplemennuyu, multicultural and raznoyazyky coalition must also be able. And if the very existence of this coalition is hostility, it can also be given credit for Damascus. However, Russia has sharply increased the number of experts, to switch to the criticism of Bashar Assad and the government army. This is not good.
Against this background, quietly and alarming headlines expected happened: at El Bab Turkish troops still attacked the Syrian government army, namely, near the settlement of Tadef Turkish special forces for some reason tried to break through the defense line of the CAA using armored vehicles.
As a result, 15 Syrian soldiers were killed and three were captured, and the two of them is not clear what purpose is actively demonstrated on Turkish television. Turkish special forces lost one armored vehicle (it took Syrians) and about 40 killed and wounded.
We have already said that "the race of El-Bab," sooner or later will end head-on collision of the Turks and government forces, and to calculate the consequences of this, including the political, extremely difficult. Thus, the events have Tadefa revelation did not, and in military terms, not clarified anything. However, still there is every reason to believe that the Turkish troops to praise too from scratch.
But a political decision will be made in Ankara after the first open military confrontation with Damascus happen is anyone's guess.