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Syria Daily: Regime Bombs Try to Check Rebels in Daraa

Syria Daily: Regime Bombs Try to Check Rebels in Daraa
February 15
06:55 2017

Rebels threaten regime in southern Syria for first time since 2015

Pro-Assad airstrikes and shelling are trying to hold back a rebel advance in the city of Daraa, the first significant offensive in southern Syria since 2015.

Aid workers said that warplanes hit a Western-funded field hospital, wounding four staff, and that a strike killed at least seven members of a family.

A destroyed regime armored vehicle in the fortified Manshiya district:


On Sunday, the Free Syrian Army, rebel factions such as Jaish al-Islam and Ahrar al-Sham, and units of the Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham coalition moved into Manshiya.

See Rebels Strike in Southern Syria for 1st Time in Months

The attack, with no advance publicity or leaks, appeared to catch regime forces by surprise. Rebels said they were striking before a deal between the regime and Jordan, helping pro-Assad forces to seize opposition territory along the Jordanian border.

Well-placed local sources also said many rebels lost patience with the US-led, Jordan-based Military Operations Command, which has restricted weapons and supplies since summer 2015. Instead, they would try to build up with captured stocks from the regime.

Before the rebel offensive, the regime had bombarded opposition-held areas of Daraa for a week, with civil defense spokesman Amer Abazeid saying “more than 1,500 artillery shells and rockets” had fallen.

He said between 2,000 and 3,000 families have fled to the nearby countryside to stay with relatives or sleep rough on farmland and in orchards to escape the heavy artillery bombardment.

TOP PHOTO: Claimed image of Manshiyah district of Daraa city after rebels entered on Sunday

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About Author

Scott Lucas

Scott Lucas

Scott Lucas is Professor of International Politics at the University of Birmingham and editor-in-chief of EA WorldView. He is a specialist in US and British foreign policy and international relations, especially the Middle East and Iran. Formerly he worked as a journalist in the US, writing for newspapers including the Guardian and The Independent and was an essayist for The New Statesman before he founded EA WorldView in November 2008.

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  1. Barbar
    Barbar February 15, 11:40

    1. In Southern Front Manshiyah offensive, FSA/AAS/HTS have reportedly suffered heavy casualties, 200+ dead/WIA with Jordan refusing entry of wounded + local hospitals overflowing. MOC (US/Jordan/GCC) command centre is also putting further pressure on the militants to stop their attack, by threatening to cut the dole of those hirelings who participate in it:
    2. In N.Hama, Liwa al-Aqsa have been pushed out of several areas but are still surrounded & in control of Khan Sheikhoun, Morek + Hish towns. Both LaA & HTS have suffered heavy losses in the rebel infighting there — negotiations taking part amid the fighting for LaA militants to be evacuated from the towns so they can escape to IS controlled areas:

    Reply to this comment
  2. Barbar
    Barbar February 15, 12:31

    1. In N.E. Aleppo, SAA Shere Khan’s Tiger Forces advancing steadily against light, intermittent resistance from IS on Jarirat al Imam, last town 2km North of hub at Deir Hafir:
    … once this area is taken it is ~15km of open desert road to Jirah Air Base and Lake Assad, sealing off Tayyip’s fevered dream of reaching Raqqa via Euphrates West bank.
    2. Meanwhile, 10 IS Inghimasi stormtroops called at Turk base N. of Al Bab this morning, nailing 7 FSA stooges:
    3. SAA may by tacit arrangement thoughtfully leave a ‘one way system’ open for IS SVBIED’s and Inghimaseen, so they can continually move North to reinforce Al Bab and abrade the Turk/stooge forces there … poetically repaying Taqiyya Tayyip in his own coin. This can then be considered his ‘contribution’ to the Raqqa campaign 😀

    Reply to this comment
  3. Barbar
    Barbar February 15, 12:52

    According to HDN today, Tayyip has still not gotten satisfactory answers from new Yanki régime on three key issues, which has delayed/hindered his push to become Sultan for Life:
    1- The strategy regarding the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), or DAESH, and the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria, including the issue of safe zones.
    2- The American stance regarding the Democratic Union Party (PYD), which the U.S. sees as a major partner against ISIL but which Turkey sees as a terrorist group for being the Syrian sister of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
    3- The extradition of or at least legal action against Fethullah Gülen, the U.S.-resident Islamist preacher, and the members of his network who are accused of being behind the July 15, 2016, foiled coup attempt.
    Having his purchased agent Flynn raucously ejected from the WH on Monday has probably not helped reassure him that Der Trumpenführer will have his back when it inevitably comes time to try and double-cross the Vladster. Oy weh!

    Reply to this comment
  4. Barbar
    Barbar February 15, 15:21

    How long has Pentagovernment been conspiring on its warcriminal proxy aggression against Syria?
    This newly released 28-page 1986 “severely restricted” report by CIA’s ‘Foreign Subversion and Instability Center’ on ‘Scenarios for Dramatic Political Change in Syria’ reveals a few clues and key plot features, including using MB for the promotion of a sectarian ‘civil’ war:
    The ultimate aim, as ever, was to create a pliant “Sunni regime” serving Yanki economic interests:
    In our view, US interests would be best served by a Sunni regime controlled by business-oriented moderates. Business moderates would see a strong need for Western aid and investment to build Syria’s private economy, thus opening the way for stronger ties to Western governments.
    Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.

    Reply to this comment
  5. Barbar
    Barbar February 15, 17:33

    Only 1 recorded ATGM launch in first half of February by Syrian rebels. Lowest so far:
    Jordan continues to deny rebel fighters injured fighting Assad army in Daraa access to medical treatment. They prefer Assad at their borders:
    Ahrar al-Sham announces death of Military Commander Abo al-Abbas Koya who was killed in clashes with the Syrian Army in Manshiyah, Daraa:
    FSA al-‘Ashair Division leader was assassinated in Lajat-Daraa, he was participant in Astana talks:
    Despite contrary reassurances, warcriminal Yankistan now admits dumping its nuclear waste in Syria too:
    But ’tis all good, as it’s for the shorties, y’all:

    Reply to this comment
    • caligola
      caligola February 15, 19:06

      When you write the jordanians prefer Assad on their border this is the opinion of the author of the tweet you posted. Not of course jordanians. Considering the whole border is controlled by FSA……

      Reply to this comment
      • Barbar
        Barbar February 15, 19:56

        Jordan, as in the country, but yes, that of course means the taghut Quisling régime, not the popular opinion.

        Reply to this comment
      • Andre De Angelis
        Andre De Angelis February 15, 20:22

        When you say the border is controlled by the FSA, surely you mean for the time being until one of the real players like Al Nusra or whatever it is they are calling themselves these days, decides to take back the keys.

        Reply to this comment
  6. K9
    K9 February 15, 22:15

    #Deraa: 1) “#Russian warplanes made intense airstrikes on #Daraa_Balad and the town of #Yadouda that wounded civilians.” – CombatChris1
    Every time the Russians/regimes does this open up another front in the province or start targeting multiple isolated regime check-points to over-run. If regime decides to use civilians as human shields then make an effort to capture alive a senior regime officer from Republican Guard/Hezbollah/IRGC, tie the captured blind-folded senior regime officer to a lamp-post on top of a building that is booby-trapped or to a lamp-post with hidden land-mines buried around him and then hide a rebel sniper nearby so when regime troops arrive there on the next day (after news has been leaked to multiple militias) not only can those booby-traps/land-mines be activated by rebels but their sniper too can pick any regime troops who have escaped from the first trap.” and if you want to make that ambush bigger leak the news to even more militias and replace the sniper with a TOWie team.
    2) “Hezbollah reinforcements reached N. part of Al-Manshiyah trying 2 stop Rebels by deploying snipers & spreading in bldgs instead of barriers” – QalaatAlMudiq
    There’s a solution to that too – infiltrate (if it’s not safe to use uniforms of regime fighters then use tunnels – Deraa has hundreds many from Roman times which the regime themselves use) their areas at night-time, locate their buildings and assembly areas, plant-land mines in the exits of such buildings and assembly areas then launch multiple VBIEDs at the entrance and sides of such buildings so when their fighters flee through their exits they walk into a mine-trap. And as for snipers, just have more ATGMs units in such areas then them.
    #Observation on Deraa: As this map (see link below) shows if rebels want to launch an effective decoy offensive to divert regime fighters from their front-line with rebels the most ideal location for such a decoy offensive would be multi-axis (ie from multiple directions) mobile guerrilla operations in the Al-Kashef and Al-Qusoor districts. Why? Because it threatens the severing of the Ataman link which the regime will rely upon to bring in most of it’s re-enforcements from. However to attempt this successfully rebels would need to spearhead/lead such a decoy offensives using not only multiple (ie groups 4 or 5) company-sized (ie 100 fighters each) units but that these attack groups also be entirely mobile (ie light artillery is not only mounted on trucks, mortar/machine-guns/ATGMs having their own trucks but assault troops are on motorbikes) so they can attack more quickly also. Furthermore now should also be the time for rebels to start infiltrating (ie using the clothes of capture or dead regime soldiers and their vehicles) Ataman so when rebels launch their assault on the airport district in the near future they have means to divert regime troops away from Deraa by activating the sleeper cells that had infiltrated Ataman.
    Finally when rebels do attempt to fight in that area not only should it be a night-time operation but rebels should attempt to fight like the Chechens did against the Russians during the First Chechen war (the one the Chechens won against the Russians) through ‘hugging’ the enemy by always staying within one block in front/behind regime units during operations so regime troops can not call in artillery or aerial support on their positions without being accidentally hit by their own artillery or jets. I go into such matters in more detail in my previous (see below link) posts.
    What would my ‘ideal tactical scenario’ be for rebels? That not only a mass number of rebel sleeper cells not only be activated in Ataman (which rebels had successfully infiltrated) on the same day rebels in Deraa launch a multi-axis assault on the airport district (which would panic the regime – that’s where most of the foreign fighters are flow in from) in which Russian jets can’t target rebels fighters because rebels and their VBIEDs (using their drones to guide the constant movements of rebel troops and VBIED through a drone?) are constantly (through drone surveillance?) ‘hugging’ multiple regime units Chechen-style (ie rebel fighters always one block of building behind/front of regime units) but that rebels are also on that day acquire ‘fire-control’ of the road connecting Ataman with Deraa and thereby cause regime to lose more vehicles in Deraa then they did at Ghab plain last year. Here’s the kicker – such a scenario is entirely plausible if rebels continue making progressing in Deraa for the next 12 days.

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