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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

52nd Brigade Army Base Falls to Free Syrian Army: Is Damascus Next?

Assad's 52nd Brigade army base in Daraa Province, some 50 miles south of Damascus, fell yesterday to the "moderate" Free Syrian Army. Without a doubt, the ring is closing around Damascus, and it is only a matter of time until Assad flees the Syrian capital with his friends to an Alawite enclave on the Mediterranean coast.

There is talk that Iran might send 50,000 soldiers to Syria to prop up Assad, but this is unlikely given Tehran's costly involvement in Iraq. A further sign of desperation is to be found in reports that Iranian commanders on the ground in Syria ordered the execution earlier this week of three Sunni army officers in Idlib Province, sowing further discord among troops still loyal to the Assad regime.

Might Hezbollah come to the aid of Assad in Damascus? Also unlikely. Hezbollah recently suffered heavy casualties in its battle with the al-Nusra Front in the Qalamoun Hills on the border between Lebanon and Syria, causing Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah to declare that his organization is now involved in an "existential battle."

Forces loyal to Assad are clearly demoralized, and the fall of Damascus could come much sooner than anyone imagines.

1 comment:

  1. and the real prize in Damascus will be:

    the 4th holiest place in Islam, housing the tomb of Saladin, the only Kurdish Caliph, although the Arabs claim him.

    Hope the Druze are making a map of their state. They deserve one.