When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

x
LA STAMPA

On Raqqa Frontline: Kurds, Arabs, Italians Close In On ISIS

Kurdish-led forces advance with hopes to recapture the ISIS capital. Together with Arab and foreign fighters, they share a common enemy. But what happens when ISIS is gone?

Soldiers of the Syrian Democratic Forces in Raqqa
Soldiers of the Syrian Democratic Forces in Raqqa
Giordano Stabile

RAQQA Commander Jihad Khabad, a tough and slender man with a well-kept beard, is holding a radio in his left hand and scanning a tablet with a map of the old city center of Raqqa. His men are stationed in buildings on the frontline between the Al-Sinaa and Rafiqah neighborhoods, a few hundred meters from the old city walls, hunting for snipers who appear suddenly out of side streets.

Whenever a gunman is spotted, often with surveillance drones, he is eliminated with rocket launchers. "At night they hide in tunnels," the commander explains. "Then during the day they start popping out all over the place, even in neighborhoods that have been freed. Every movement is a danger. Under every stone there could be a mine or a trap-bomb. We have more wounded every day."

Keep reading... Show less
You've reached your monthly limit of free articles.
To read the full article, please subscribe.
Get unlimited access. Support Worldcrunch's unique mission:
  • Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.
  • Stories from the best international journalists.
  • Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries
Already a subscriber? Log in

When the world gets closer, we help you see farther

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter!
Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

Sign up to our free daily newsletter.

In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

Keep reading... Show less

When the world gets closer, we help you see farther

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter!
You've reached your monthly limit of free articles.
To read the full article, please subscribe.
Get unlimited access. Support Worldcrunch's unique mission:
  • Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.
  • Stories from the best international journalists.
  • Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries
Already a subscriber? Log in
THE LATEST
FOCUS
TRENDING TOPICS

Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

Watch Video Show less
MOST READ