To call the war in Syria, the main event of last year’s strange – the war has been going on for five years. Of course, it is more logical to allocate the intervention in this war Russia and the subsequent fracture. But the fracture is not reduced to the military successes of the Assad’s army. Now began the process, allowing to predict the further course and the outcome of the war. And Europe in this sense is very bad news.
The war in Syria before our eyes sharply changed several successive stages. So, government forces and militia, with the support of the Russian air force and Navy, turned from persecuted outsiders in the dominant figure of the conflict. They still don’t have enough confidence in yourself and modern weapons, but they acquired an offensive style of thinking. It took, however, more than two months that war in Damascus have established operational interaction with the Russian group, but now it can be argued that defeating the jihadists is not a propaganda stamp and not even a question of the distant future.
“It was nice to live under the jihadists, to go to the sale of slaves, to destroy archaeological sites and patrol the streets in the composition of the Shariah police”
But if offensive by Syrian government forces in the new year – the trend is clear, and can, on the basis of objective criteria and factors, it is easy to predict their course and the approximate result, then a new trend in Syrian politics may come as a surprise. Surprise and decisive – not so much for the outcome of the war as such, but for the future of Syria as a state.
It is just started, but already the developing process of “exchange of people”. The Syrian government (mostly through civilian authorities, not military) is organizing the “honorable retreat” for those of militants from various jihadi organizations and groups which, during the negotiations, considered to be “moderate”. In most cases it is the locals who have something to lose, and they are allowed to evacuate with their families and even with personal weapons. Foreign mercenaries and fanatics to such negotiations are not allowed and they don’t want.
As a result entire populations leaving government forces surrounded the areas organized and moving in a North-westerly direction closer to the Turkish border. And if at first it was a one-way process (the Syrian government evacuated surrounded by “moderate” without getting anything in return), before the New year it became known that several hundred of Shiites and other supporters of Assad have left organized jihadist-held areas in the North-West and the ship arrived in Beirut. In response, government forces crossed into the Turkish province of Hatay captured jihadists.
Who’s friends with who and fighting in Syria and Iraq Have every reason to believe that in the near future such exchanges of territory and population can be a major form of political dialogue in Syria. Already formed districts of one dominant religious and/or national groups. Including in those places where five years ago it was common “overlapping” with a quite tolerant attitude to each other. There is a kind of “voluntary ethnic cleansing”, and religious affiliation of any settlement becomes the basic point in fighting for it.
On the other hand, if it goes on like this, previously scattered on several fronts force the jihadists finally localized on the border with Turkey, not only in military terms but as a population. No, we are not talking about the formation of a new ethnic or religious group. Just split Syria into several unequal (from all points of view) parts will become tangible features. Even if we assume that the government forces will be able during the year to squeeze in Turkey remains intransigent opposition to political dialogue will not have, and would be difficult to imagine their participation in post-war elections.