Syria Rebel Faction Kills 27 Soldiers in South

Growing Fear Over Civil War

A group of Syrian army deserters attacked military forces in southern Syria today, killing at least 27 members of the nation’s security forces and prompting more concern that the nation was rapidly approaching a state of civil war.

Details of the attack were scarce, and one Syrian human rights group suggested that the attack happened outside the city of Daraa, where they targeted checkpoints. So far the Syrian state media hasn’t acknowledged the killings.

Which is unusual, because the state media usually emphasizes the killings of members of the pro-Assad security forces while mocking reports of civilians slain in protests as foreign media lies. This might suggest that the high death toll in a single coordinated attack has taken the regime by surprise.

The concern about a civil war is primarily an issue for internal protesters, who could quickly see their calls for free elections replaced by a foreign-backed military seeking to replace the regime and a domestic regime that seeks to paint the protesters as part of a foreign plot.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.