Begin quote from:http://edition.cnn.com/2012/02/08/world/meast/syria-armed-resistance/?hpt=hp_c1
The grass-roots armed resistance is growing, attracting civilians as well as military defectors, and has become a thorn in the side of the Syrian military and the pro-regime militias, observers say. But it needs more personnel, better resources and improved coordination to take on the Syrian security presence, they add.
"The FSA is contributing to the strain on regime forces by requiring them to operate almost continuously and engage in frequent combat," said Jeffrey White, a defense fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
"This is in addition to the strain created by hundreds of peaceful civilian demonstrations across the country each week. The regime has been compelled to deploy larger forces and conduct more violent operations, increasing both its losses and the international visibility of its actions," he said.
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White made remarks in a January 27 essay titled "The Free Syrian Army Bleeds the Assad Regime," and elaborated on that analysis in an interview Wednesday.
He said government operations "in recent days have pushed the FSA to a lower level of activity." But he also said the regime "has not been able to eradicate the FSA in any area."
He said the FSA has been engaged in combat in at least six of the country's 14 provinces -- Idlib, Hama, Homs, Deir Ezzor, Daraa, and Rif Dimashq. Rif Dimashq includes the Damascus suburbs.
The fighters have been "inflicting greater losses on regime personnel and equipment than at any time since its involvement in the uprising began," White said.
He said about 180 clashes were reported between early November and late January. One-third occurred in Idlib province and about a quarter in Daraa, while clashes have increased in Rif Dimashq.
The group has operated openly in places like Idlib province and the cities of Homs, Hama and Zabadani, and it has established control over some small pockets.
"Their most common operations include attacking regime positions (primarily checkpoints), defending demonstrators and local areas, and ambushing regime forces," White said.
Rebels say they are not getting weapons and money from outside groups. White said most of the weapons are captured or bought from the Syrian military. Some smuggling is reported, he added.
The rebels are getting better armed, with more and better antitank weapons, and the number of defections is growing, White said. end quote.
I found it interesting that one of primary ways that the FSA gets weapons now is by buying them from the Syrian Military. If this were the U.S. this wouldn't make any sense at all but in this environment I guess anything goes. In this kind of environment people will do literally anything to try and protect their families and friends. I don't think anything like this has ever happened in the U.S. And if it did it wasn't in the last couple of centuries.
I was listening to Wolf Blitzer on CNN TV today and it was said that the Pentagon is researching what militarily and otherwise it can do without U.N. mandate to help the people being killed in Syria. It has thought about arming the Free Syrian Army but then there is Russia that has a Naval Base in Syria that it desperately doesn't want to lose. The U.S. doesn't want to be led down a path into a proxy war between Russia and China and Iran and Hezbollah on One side and the U.S. , Canada, Europe, Australia and the rest of the Free World on the other side. However, leaving things as they are is unacceptable. So, at the very least you are going to see middle eastern nations and European and countries like the U.S., Canada, Australia and many others looking the other way if anyone wants to weaponize the Free Syrian Army. The likelihood is that wealthy middle eastern individuals will start to buy AK-47s, rocket launchers, anti-tank weapons etc. for the Free Syrian Army and no one will stop them. It likely will go from there. What Assad is now doing because of Arab Spring and because the world is watching will not work. I think he will be gone or dead within 1 or 2 years. It is inevitable. However, no one wants a world war to start over Syria either.
Days later: I have since I wrote comments on and compiled this information found out that the Alawite Shia minority Government of Assad will likely fight to the very last man. The reason for this is that if they don't they likely will be massacred by the Sunni relatives of the Sunni Muslims that they are genociding now. This is a real mess that could go on for years. Especially because of Iran supplying soldiers and weapons to Assad and Russia supplying weapons to Assad too. This will likely get as bad as anything I have seen in my lifetime before it is over and I have lived 63 years so far. This is a real mess that could cause a world war if it is improperly handled by everyone. And the Israel Iran component just makes it 100 times worse for the future of the world peace and oil at prices low enough so people can afford to live and eat. I hope there is not a world war or a World Wide Great Depression soon because of no oil coming out of the middle east at all. Since some places in the lower 48 states are already at $5 a gallon for premium those same gas stations might see $6 dollar a gallon premium by May and $7 a gallon premium by August. This I'm afraid just because of world survival of economies is going to start a major war which is something we haven't seen since World War II on the scale this likely is going to be. With Gas prices this high it is likely a lot of people are going to starve as well this year worldwide.
It is a good time to be praying for a good future for our children.