Syrian Army Reaches Iraqi Border, Cuts Off Coalition At Al-Tanf

The Syrian Arab Army has linked up with Iraqi forces, setting up outposts along the border and cutting the Americans off at al-Tanf, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense.

A major move to cut off the US in southern Syria from taking more territory.al-Tanf

Russia Insider reports:

While we don’t have a lot of details yet, here’s what we can say: this is a brilliant move if true. Not exactly a checkmate yet, but definitely a check on US ambitions in southern Syria.

In essence, as Americans were busy bombing small Syrian groups entering their declared exclusion zone via the main road, a separate Syrian force staged a lightning-quick advance through roadless desert, well to the east of the “deconfliction” zone enveloping the Americans.

al-Tanf
The Syrians drove eastwards towards al-Bawda, then cut south to the border

If the US forces are not cut off from ISIS they no longer have an excuse to continue occupying this part of Syria. (Or will they insist they get to leapfrog over the Syrian army?)
Russians are saying it will be them and the Syrians — rather than the Americans — who will be advancing along the Iraqi border towards al-Bukamal (the major border crossing in the Euphrates valley coveted by the Pentagon):al-Tanf

Russian officers also accused the US of hindering the Syrian war effort against ISIS, by blocking its military from opening a new front against the group:

“The coalition air forces and the strongholds of the forces of New Syrian Army have blocked the way of the government forces, tasked with defeating IS groups.”

“This is a violation of the sovereign right of Syria to protect it borders."
al-Tanf
The new, and improved, map with the Americans and dependent forces (green) now boxed-in by the Syrian army (red)

There is a video of the Russian briefing, but so far not yet translated (except for an incomplete summary at RT).

UPDATE — Apparently in sync with the Syrian army move south, Iraqi forces likewise advanced against ISIS from their side and met on the border. Thus Syria has not just reached the formal Iraqi border, but actually re-established an actual link to Iraq:

UPDATE #2: We now have the video of the briefing at Russian MoD with English subs. The most relevant part starts at 15:27 into the clip:

  • K Pomeroy

    Nonsense, You are citing irrational fantasy theories. The US never had any intention of expanding its hold on Syrian territory. This was clearly stated by US Secretary of Defence Mattis in May. Give me one instance of Mattis breaking his word. I’m sure you cannot. What the US was objecting to was SAA-Hezbollah approaching the US training base near al-Tanf. DUH! The US military calls it “force protection” and takes this seriously. Whether the US is in Syria legally—which it is not—is beside the point that I am making. Obviously I am correct. As soon as the SAA avoided al-Tanf, the US did not stop it from reaching the Iraqi border. In other words, the US kept its word. What’s wrong with you people! Furthermore, the SAA by reaching the Iraqi border has not in any way thwarted “US plans” for occupying more territory, as there were no such plans. Put 2 and 2 together. The US, under Donald Trump, is not nearly the evil monster you wish it were in order get internet traffic by wowing and scaring your audience. You have set the US up as an imaginary monster so you can imagine others to have thwarted this monster. Pure fantasy.