This last week has been extremely eventful for the Syrian civil war. The eyes of the news are currently on the Turkish Army’s entrance into Afrin just hours ago, all in order to continue their operation against the SDF, however; it is important to understand the implications of this story, as many other things have occurred in the past few days as well.
The Syrian Arab Army has made major progress in recapturing the Province of Idlib. Yesterday, they captured a key airbase on the southern border of Idlib. Whats-more, the SAA’s continued push toward’s the heart of the Province has been supported by the Russian Air Force, with the Russian MoD claiming that they expect Idlib to be recaptured within the month.
As SAA makes gain’s in Idlib, the Free Syrian Army has shifted its focus towards helping the Turkish forces in the fight against the Kurdish YPJ and SDF. Washington has not taken any actions to stop the Turkish onslaught against their allies in Manbij; for the SDF, this is especially disconcerting, particularly because Russia is coordinating with Turkey in their operation, making the chances of the SDF holding out very slim unless there is foreign support. In even worse news for the Kurdish militias, Turkey’s offensive won’t end there, as Erdogan stated on Friday that the military action will continue into Manbij, and even further into Kurdish and SDF held territory.
The government in Damascus has condemned the attacks, but have decided to stay out of this conflict as they see the offensive as a chance to gain more territory in Deir-Ezzor, a region where ISIS has previously made some gains, especially around Hajin. The SAA is preparing to battle IS in Hajin in the coming days.
From the looks of it, the next few weeks will be likely prove to be somewhat decisive, as the Syrian Army will look to make gains in Idlib, while the SDF will lose more territory to the FSA and Turkey; with this in mind, the SDF may have to look at resolving their differences with Damascus and its allies before it’s too late for the relatively small militia force.
Featured Image: Reuters