Tomb Of Jesus Is Restored In Jerusalem : Parallels : NPR

Jesus’ tomb has been freshened up in time for Easter. “This monument today is free,” said Antonia Moropoulou, who led the Greek team that handled the renovations.

“I would venture to say that if this intervention hadn’t happened now, there was a very great risk that there could have been a collapse,” said Bonnie Burnham of the World Monuments Fund, a nonprofit in New York that helped raise funds for the $4 million project.

Source: Tomb Of Jesus Is Restored In Jerusalem : Parallels : NPR

Analysis | Trump inherits the Iraq War. But what will he do?

The Iraqi prime minister’s visit to Washington raises more questions than answers.His visit was drowned out in the American news cycle by feverish coverage of hearings on Capitol Hill regarding Russian meddling in last year’s election. Sensing the moment, Abadi gestured to the national conversation, joking while sitting alongside Trump that he had nothing to do with wiretapping the then-candidate’s phones. (Earlier in the day, FBI director James B. Comey had confirmed that his agency had found no evidence to support Trump’s allegations about wiretapping.)

Source: Analysis | Trump inherits the Iraq War. But what will he do?

Dozens killed in suicide attacks on Syrian uprising anniversary

Explosions occurred outside a courthouse and at a restaurant in the capital.

Syrian state media said a first attacker detonated his payload outside the largest courthouse in Damascus, known as Justice Palace. Hours later, it reported that a second bomber attacked a restaurant in the city’s Rabweh district, killing several people.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitoring group, put the death toll at 39, with more than 100 wounded.

Source: Dozens killed in suicide attacks on Syrian uprising anniversary

U.S. Is Sending 400 More Troops to Syria – The New York Times

WASHINGTON — The United States is sending an additional 400 troops to Syria to help prepare for the looming fight for Raqqa, the capital of the Islamic State’s self-proclaimed caliphate, American officials said on Thursday.

The increase, which includes a team of Army Rangers and a Marine artillery unit that have already arrived in Syria, represents a near-doubling of the number of American troops there.

The United States military has declined to say how many troops it has deployed in Syria. The formal troop cap is 503, but commanders have the authority to temporarily exceed that limit.

The Rangers’ presence became apparent last weekend when they were seen driving around the northern Syrian town of Manbij in Stryker vehicles and armored Humvees. The Washington Post earlier reported the deployment of the Marine artillery battery.

Source: U.S. Is Sending 400 More Troops to Syria – The New York Times

US Air Force aids Syrian Army, Russian military liberate Palmyra

BEIRUT, LEBANON (10:20 A.M.) – For the first time during this six year long Syrian Conflict, the U.S. and Russian air forces coordinated to aid the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) in their quest to liberate Palmyra (Tadmur) from the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist organization.

U.S. warplanes conducted several raids over the eastern countryside of Palmyra these past two weeks, hitting a large number of Islamic State targets along the Sukhanah-Palmyra Road.

These airstrikes by the U.S. Air Force in east Palmyra helped the Syrian Arab Army and Russian military retake the city by cutting off their vital supply route.

Source: US Air Force aids Syrian Army, Russian military liberate Palmyra