Odd to see such honesty, mixed in with the usual spin, on just how bad the rebels have been faring.
Not sure what to make of it?
A MONTH after rebel forces launched a blazing attempt to capture Aleppo, Syria's second city, they are starting to wilt. The regime claims to have routed them from their main stronghold in the Salaheddin district. Clashes continue in the southwest of the city and around the airport, but the best that rebel commanders can now hope to achieve is to draw the regime into a quagmire.
This is hardly the outcome the rebels were looking for, but it is not surprising either. Commanders have long acknowledged that they find it difficult to hold cities.
Many Syrians--as well as outside observers--conclude that the rebels overreached by taking the fight to Aleppo.
Part of the problem is that the rebels are failing to win hearts and minds among the urban middle class in Aleppo. The same was true of the failed attempt to take the capital, Damascus, in July. Most Aleppans cannot stomach the regime, whose brutality has left some 20,000 dead. But they find the rebels' tactics off-putting too, including summary executions such as that of Zaino Berri, head of a pro-regime militia. Some rebel groups have sent captives in booby-trapped cars to blow up checkpoints.
Imagine my surprise that Syrians would find that off putting . NOT. I am being facetious. These NATO backed terrorists would have anyone normal questioning just what type of freedom a bunch of hired killers is delivering?
Meanwhile, the political opposition is as divided as ever. Much to its dismay, America's secretary of state, Hillary Clinton snubbed the Syrian National Council, a group of exiles, during her recent visit to Turkey. The group is "on the verge of irrelevance", says a Western diplomat.
Hence the call by France for any murderer or thief to form a transitional government and the French in their infinite wisdom will recognize it ? Come on!
Foreign powers are trying to strengthen civilian institutions inside the country.
Some (spin see below) help from Western governments, including intelligence, is still reaching the rebels.
Without a no-fly zone or plenty of surface-to-air missiles to bring down regime jets many rebels think they will struggle. (Well, we know the NATO merc/killers have those)
The branding of rebels, a point I have made repeatedly here , but, interesting to see it used in the msm
Competition for resources and personal feuds have already led some groups to fall out. The two main rebel forces in the Homs area, the Khaled Ibn Walid Brigade and Farouq, both work out of the rebellious town of Rastan, but their leaders are at loggerheads. Some groups like Tawhid claim to work under the Free Syrian Army, whose secular figureheads are based in Turkey. (Secular figureheads?)But this (Tawhid) is more of a brand than an organisation. (Aren't they all brands?) Others choose to distance themselves. One of Idleb's largest groups, Saquor al-Sham, churns out mini-documentaries, each starting with its logo morphing into a falcon as thunder crackles in the background. These films are used to attract funding, which comes mainly from wealthy Syrians abroad and Gulf traders. Because the West will not arm and defend the opposition, weapons must often be bought with cash. So far at least there is no sign of its running out. But that may change if the rebels cannot prove they can hold big cities.
And a spin outfit complete with a morphing falcon logo?
To much. Way to much.
Also interesting. Yet, again not sure what to make of it? Seems alot of hype and not much substance.
Tell me what you think?
Iran Said to Send Troops to Bolster Syria
Are they? It's really not clear
"Today we are involved in fighting every aspect of a war, a military one in Syria and a cultural one as well," Gen. Salar Abnoush, commander of IRGC's Saheb al-Amr unit, told volunteer trainees in a speech Monday. The comments, reported by the Daneshjoo news agency, which is run by regime-aligned students, couldn't be independently verified.
Top Iranian officials had previously said the country isn't involved in the conflict.
But, "two Iranian newspapers quoted Defense Minister Ahmad Vahidi as saying. Syria hadn't asked for assistance yet, he added.
"Syria is managing this situation very well on its own," he said. "But if the government can't resolve the crisis on its own, then based on their request we will fulfill our mutual defense-security pact."
Israeli media is spinning as if Iran is involved, not a surprise, nor necessarily true.