To the best of our professional understanding, the regime used lethal chemical weapons against gunmen in a series of incidents in recent months.Brig. Gen. Itai Brun, research division chief for Israeli army intelligence • Claiming that Syria’s Assad government has used chemical weapons against it’s people (though offering no corroborating evidence), in remarks at the Institute for National Security Studies. of Tel Aviv University. Secretary of State John Kerry says he spoke to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu this morning, and that the leader “was not in a position to confirm” his military’s assessment. This isn’t a new concern for the United States, which has been under some international pressure to address claims to the UN by France and Britain, both allies, also suggesting that pro-Assad forces have used chemical weaponry. This has major political and diplomatic implications for America, as the administration has engaged in “red line” rhetoric on the matter of chemical weapons. source
We are fighting an external aggression that is more dangerous than any others, because they use us to kill each other. It is a war between the nation and its enemies, between the people and the murderous criminals.Syrian President Bashar al-Assad • Suggesting to the country’s people, during a major speech, that people still loyal to his regime continue to fight against the extremist forces he claims are disrupting the country. Meanwhile, he pitched an idea for settling the civil war, but said he would only work with parties ”who have not betrayed Syria.” The approach, which includes a new constitution and a reconciliation conference, was dismissed by Syrian opposition figures, who will settle for nothing less than Assad’s departure. Syria’s neighbors (see: Turkey) and Western officials also criticized the proposal.
We are fighting a regional and global war, so time is needed to win it. We are moving forward. The situation is practically better but it has not been decided yet. That takes time.Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad • Speaking on private television station Dunya Wednesday regarding the nature of the conflict in Syria — and alluding in the process to the struggles the Syrian army faces in trying to win against rebel cells. Assad also called defections a “self-cleansing” process, saying that. “Whoever flees is either weak or bad. A patriotic or a good person does not flee.”
» Possibly a low point? Riyad Hijab, who was the country’s prime minister between June and August of this year, strongly suggests that Assad’s regime is on the way to collapse. ”Oh devoted revolutionaries, your revolution has become a model of effort and sacrifice for the sake of freedom and dignity,” he says. “I assure you, from my experience and former position, that the regime is collapsing, spiritually and financially, as it escalates militarily.” In case you’re wondering how we got to this point, we highly recommend our Pitch piece, which breaks it down.
The focus two weeks ago was on Damascus. The focus is now on Aleppo, where there has been a considerable build-up of military means, and where we have reason to believe that the main battle is about to start.UN Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Herve Ladsous • Discussing the current military situation in Syria — suggesting a major battle in Aleppo is coming soon. In related news, three Russian landing ships, each carrying 120 marines, are heading to the Syrian port of Tartus to restock supplies for the base. Russia had previously offered to send ships to the base for protection purposes.
sturmpony said: Not exactly secret though, is it?
jasonstiff said: Doesn’t appear very secret right now…
bobbycaputo said: Not so secret anymore is it. Thanks for letting the cat of of the bag ;)
» SFB says: Reuters’ words, not ours. (It was reported as an exclusive.) That said, good to see that three people made the same joke on that post. :) — Ernie @ SFB
People are fleeing the city towards the countryside. I think they are sensing that a huge battle is about to take place, a decisive one.Free Syrian Army deputy commander Malik Kurdi • Regarding the quickly-escalating situation in Aleppo, which is being described as “nonstop shelling” by some activists. The battle over one of the world’s oldest cities has been increasingly violent, the worst in the city since the war began. The U.S. has increased its support of the rebels in the region of late, though not “lethal support.”
People are still in shock that this is happening — they thought it would be limited to one neighborhood, but it is growing in size to other neighborhoods. They are scared of chaos and lawlessness more than anything else.Syrian academic Fadi Salem • Discussing the fighting taking place in the city of Aleppo, one of the two main holdouts in the Syrian conflict, which has heated up in recent days. Pockets of the loosely-organized Free Syrian Army launched the attacks on both Aleppo and Damascus in in an effort to gain control over two of the oldest cities in the world — and the country’s two key power centers. Even if the rebel armies have to double back once the Syrian army comes in, they’ve made the point that no part of the country is safe.