Saber rattling across the demarcation line has grown louder from both sides in recent weeks. In a show of force against recent Turkish troop build ups in the area, the regime has deployed units to the strategic frontline position of Ain Issa, while Russian drones veered into Turkish-controlled airspace around Ras al-Ain, provocatively coinciding with a nearby joint training operation between Turkish forces and SNA militia groups. Despite the noise, an offensive looks unlikely in the near-term, since troop deployment and movements on all sides do not amount to the level indicating serious military ambition. Meanwhile, a resurgence of ISIS violence in northeast Syria has brought a renewed wave of almost daily attacks against both SDF and pro-regime forces, resulting in a rising death toll for both camps. Despite a months-long Russian-led campaign of aerial bombardment against the group centered on striking ISIS positions in the Badia desert, ISIS has continued to regain strength and inflict more casualties than during any other period in the past year.
Attached Map: Military Situation in North-East Syria – 13th December 2021