Thursday, July 26, 2012

Clashes so fierce in Aleppo and morale so low troops running away and defecting on the spot

Syria: Troops and rebels reinforce for big Aleppo battle: Syrian rebels have stepped up their stockpiling of ammunition and medical supplies in preparation for a major battle in Aleppo, a BBC reporter says. The rebels, who are in control large parts of Syria's second city, have set up checkpoints and sniper positions. Activists say columns of government troops and tanks are heading towards the city from other areas. Aleppo is the country's commercial capital, and is key to the battle to control the north of the country. Street battles have been reported throughout Aleppo for almost a week, as rebels try to hold on to seized neighborhoods.

:A "large number" of troops have been moved from the northwestern province of Idlib to join the fighting in Aleppo, a rebel spokesman told AFP via Skype. Free Syrian Army Colonel Abdel Jabbar al-Oqaidi said he believed the reinforcements were being sent because of the intensity of clashes in Aleppo, where several districts were "liberated" on Monday. "There are clashes right now in Aleppo, so fierce that many of their troops are running away, while dozens of others are defecting on the spot," Oqaidi said. "Their morale is very low." 
 The increased firepower has helped the rebels successfully attack armored vehicles and force some Syrian forces to take resupply by helicopter. The rebels have also been able to establish growing enclaves in northern Syria and from there try to seize a number of key border crossings. Watson said in the village he was in that hundreds of rebels loaded up with ammunition Monday night and headed to fight in Aleppo. 
Syria crisis: battles in Damascus and Aleppo - live updates: • The European Union has agreed to strengthen its arms embargo and increase sanctions again against the Assad regime, Reuters reports. Speaking after a meeting of foreign minister EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said: These sanctions are important because they will allow ships to be examined to see what cargo they're carrying, and that will prevent, I hope, any arms reaching Syria.
 • Israel has confirmed that its leaders have discussed with US officials how to manage a Syrian government collapse, AP reports. An official said: "You can presume that these sorts of issues came up with American officials when they visited recently in Israel."

 • UN blogger Nabil Abi Saab, claims the Arab League's decision to change Kofi Annan's mission in Syria (see 9.10am) represents the end of the joint envoy's mission. 9.47am: Rebel troops have been filmed capturing a government tank in the Shakour district of Aleppo.

The climax is building but I like much of the world am long convinced that Assad is a mad man. If he is still alive he is getting beyond increasingly desperate. At the very least he will use chemical weapons on his own people that he calls foreigners and terrorists and in the process sacrifice many of his own supporters.
Syria is largely thought to have the largest stockpile of chemical weapons in the world and the most extensive and deadliest. Yes they are moving them around supposedly to protect them but I would not count on that. One of the General's now in the opposition is making a plan to secure them. Under Assad he was in control of them so he knows where they all are.

Not just that but you know Israel is monitoring their movement and knows where they are. They will do anything to keep them out of the hands of Hezbollah who absolutely would use them on Israel.

Lastly do not discount Iran's ability to get her hands on them "clandestinely of course" and get them into the hands of anyone eager to use them on Israel. This is not a good situation in an already volatile predicament. Not with everyone involved there eager to gain the upper hand in influencing which way the new middle east order goes.

James Joiner
Gardner, Ma


Demeur said...

I am somewhat concerned that the bulk of the arms from what I'm hearing is going to the extremist faction of the FSA. Whether this is true remains to be seen. I am seeing more tanks being blown up by the FSA which is a good sign. Guerilla warfare always seems to win in the end.

jmsjoin said...

It is looking pretty good from here but we need more defections of fighter pilots and helicopter pilots. 2 more high ranking politicians defected too!