Scores Wounded in Latest Crackdown
Eyewitnesses say that at least 39 people were killed and 70 others wounded on Monday in the southern city of Daraa. The latest deaths came after a violent three day weekend of crackdowns starting with the “Good Friday Massacre.”
Though the death toll was a far cry from the 100+ slain on Friday, today’s offensive in Daraa took the crackdown to a new level, with the regime deploying tanks into the key border city. Daraa was the city where protests began over five weeks ago.
The use of tanks against protesters has been comparatively rare across the Middle East, with only a handful of incidents in places like Bahrain and Libya. This suggests that the Assad regime is moving into the stage where shows of force are its last weapon against dissent.
At the same time, such shows of strength have been ineffective for the regime so far. Every Friday protest has been met with a violent crackdown, and the following Friday has seen protests dramatically bigger than the last. The use of such tactics seems to have convinced many opposition figures that they have little to lose in rebelling more openly.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Officials Continue to Push Trump Into Retaining US Hostility Toward Russia - January 18th, 2017
- Germany Demands Trump Clarify His Foreign Policy Agenda - January 18th, 2017
- Syria Opposes Qatar, Saudi Arabia Participating in Peace Talks - January 18th, 2017
- Turkey, Russia Launch Joint Airstrikes Against ISIS in Northern Syria - January 18th, 2017
- Rep. Gabbard Visits Damascus on Unannounced Syria Trip - January 18th, 2017