Aleppo can be considered a liberated city. The most important battle of this war, often called “the Syrian Stalingrad”, ended with the complete victory of the government troops knocked out of the hands of the West’s main trump card in the negotiations on the Syrian settlement. However, Western diplomacy, in contrast to rebels from Aleppo, is not going to surrender.
By Tuesday morning, the battle for Aleppo ended with the complete victory of the government troops. Statistical 1% of the territory that still keep the fighters don’t count (another thing that the rest has nothing to lose, and they can prolong their existence until recently). Now the city are cleaning, clearance and filtration of the population.
“Operations of the Syrian army can burn itself into an asset thousands of settlements that have been embroiled in a standoff, but then found a common language with the authorities”
Difficult situation remains around Palmyra, where ISIS militants* again tried to attack, this time in the direction of the air base, T-4 and the intersection Jigar, based on the positions of al-Ballarat and al-Dawa. Syrian 11th Panzer division under the pressure of the enemy withdrew from Gihara, opening to the Islamists the way to the base. But later, it was reported that the control over the perimeter of the T-4 is stored, and the region began to receive reinforcements from the Damascus.
Concurrently, there were reports that ISIS attacked government troops near the Deir ez-Zor. While jihadists actively used drones to bombard the forward positions of the CAA, one of them was shot down.
Against this background, the Minister of foreign Affairs of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in Brussels: “the Regime in Damascus and those who support it militarily is Russia and Iran, illusions, since Aleppo is automatically perceived as a turning point in the Syrian conflict. Of course, the fall of Aleppo is a serious event, no questions. However, I think that if Damascus deemed it the end of the civil war in Syria, it will quickly turn out to be illusion.”
While Steinmeier admitted the participation of Bashar al-Assad in the transitional political process, but stressed that it must be “limited in time”. “It’s about creating a transitional government that will ensure that Syria will not collapse, that its unity will be preserved. The government, which will be presented to the opposition, and the future of Syria will not be in the long term presented by Assad, the Minister concluded. – The Syrian regime has failed to keep Palmyra, which is now in the hands of ISIS. This shows how weak the Syrian regime from a military point of view. I say this to convince the Iranians and the Russians in that in the end no alternative to a political settlement.”
Who is friends with whom and the war in Syria and Iraq, Two days earlier, Steinmeier together with his French counterpart issued an ultimatum demanding (and also somehow from Russia and Iran) to ensure the safety of members of the so-called Syrian civil defense. The members of this organization, more commonly known as “white helmets”. It is sponsored by Western European governments, the organization claiming to be apolitical rescuers, but in fact were active participants in the defense of the Eastern part of Aleppo on the side of a variety of former jihadists and “moderate”. Additional recognition this organization has provided the fabrication of the many fake videos and their active participation in social networks, where on behalf of the Syrian children created fake accounts, compares developments in Aleppo with the Holocaust and demanded “to stop Russia and Iran” with nuclear weapons. Information warfare with participation of “girls with pigtails” still will not go away. The same concern Steinmeier is mainly connected with the fact that white helmets are financed including from the budget of Germany.
The position of Steinmeier about Aleppo psychologically understandable. Retention of parts of Syria’s largest city Damascus opposition forces was considered an important factor of political pressure on the Assad regime for the planned negotiations on the future of Syria. In Western Europe spent a lot of effort trying to convince everyone that in the Eastern part of Aleppo, there are unnamed “healthy opposition forces” that can lead the country to prosperity and democracy unless they win and overthrow the “bloody regime”. An obstacle in this way Russia and Iran, who supported the legitimate government in Damascus. A year ago, happiness was so close, and now the head of the German diplomacy has to console himself and his supporters that “the war is not over”.
The idea that the rebellious part of Syria still have someone with whom you can negotiate about the shared future, is contagious. Even in Russia’s expert community there are enough people, compassionate “moderate” for some irrational reasons. Increasingly use the term “shabiha” (from the Arabic root “sign”) – the so-called various Pro-government volunteer units mainly of alawites, who back in the 80-ies began to form, the brothers and Namir Rifat Assad. During the civil war propaganda turned the shabiha in the bogey, its members accused of war crimes, torture and executions. Now began to see a new video supposedly showing the atrocities of the shabiha in the liberated areas of Aleppo. Even argued that the way out of the Eastern part of the city received only those local people who had relatives in Sabie. This is nonsense by definition, since the population of Aleppo religiously diverse, but mostly consists of Sunnis, and control of displaced persons carries and the Russian Center for reconciliation.
Overall victory in Aleppo has spawned a new wave of criticism of Russia. On its domestic market shifted to the idea that Moscow is not in Syria’s declared purpose, and the duty of support of the Assad government is embarking on a slippery slope in Afghanistan. But this purpose is, now, in addition to combating terrorism, to the forefront the preservation of the territorial integrity of Syria and the General tenor of her life as a secular and multi-confessional state. And for this it needed military victories. To save power knows what Barmaley in raqqa and Idlib is unacceptable in this situation to talk about political dialogue impossible. Even the position of the Syrian opposition, which is considered “moderate” based on the ultimatum demanding the resignation of Assad. Except that some are willing to wait a couple more years, and some now rely on the division of the country, create a “government in exile” or trying to form a parallel government in areas under their control.
The new military situation after the Stripping of Aleppo, forcing a wide range of people – from Steinmeier to the Russian liberal experts – to look for new lines of confrontation in the political sphere. Not contact and dialogue and that confrontation. The West is now extremely difficult to invent a new opposition structure that would enjoy sufficient legitimacy in at least one province of Syria, in order to be able to sit at the negotiating table. A variety of “umbrella” unions and advice in real life did not work, and the control over conquered territories is largely carried out by jihadists. You, as Americans, to be led by tribal leaders, and then wonder bubblecontest what is happening. Can lead the endless secret negotiations with the Turks, who understand only force. But all this will not bring a lasting peace in Syria. No one who continues to invent new opposition groups and to lobby them seats in the transitional government, is not connected with the situation on the ground.
But on the front for a long time no matter what the name of one or another opposition group, exactly since, when John Kerry effectively promotional Department of pure from impure (i.e. “moderate” from terrorists).
The configuration of the front will change further. Will continue the wishes of the U.S. and Western diplomacy to halt the offensive for another humanitarian pause. This one will not go, because the real benefit from these pauses there, and expect hands-on involvement of our partners in establishing peace in Syria is no longer necessary. Peace is possible only through the military victory of Assad, and its approach will speak about the configuration of the new government, or even the group of negotiators.
In the end, there are doubts that any significant part of Syria’s population generally supports these artificial opposition organization. Most of them during the civil war, had to prove its meaninglessness. On the contrary, the operations of the Syrian army can burn itself into an asset thousands of settlements that have been embroiled in a standoff, but then found a common language with the authorities. In the list of causes of the protracted civil war there were many artificial, imposed from outside, and only getting rid of them we can talk about the world.
While it is possible to do without advice, and the more ultimatums Steinmeier and his colleagues. After the capture of Aleppo they even escape do not have.
* Organization in respect of which the court accepted entered into legal force decision on liquidation or ban the activities on the grounds stipulated by the Federal law “On countering extremist activity”