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Sunday, October 11, 2015

Russia has declared war on any groups opposed to the regime of Bashar al-Assad; who are they?

Link: Russian missiles crash in Iran.

Russia is demonstrating its military capabilities in the Syrian theater, by launching multiple bombing raids and missile launches, targeting ISIS positions.  After initially focusing on internal Syrian opposition targets, Russia has expanded its hit list to include ISIS-held positions.  The missile barrage, launched from Russian warships in the Caspian Sea, was apparently intended to reinforce the message that not only does Russia have the determination to conduct all-out war, it also has the capacity and reach to do so.  Although the Russians have started conducting bombing sorties against ISIS forces, the Free Syrian Army, an anti-Assad organization with very close ties to the United States, was also among today's targets.  As the Russians become more familiar with the Syrian political environment, they will realize that the participants in this conflict are not limited to the Islamic State, Jabhat al-Nusra, the Free Syrian Army, Syrian Kurds, and forces loyal to de facto President Bashar al-Assad.  Since Russia has declared war on all the organizations opposing the Syrian Ba'ath Party and Assad, lets review some of the groups who are determined to implement regime change in Damascus:

Aleppo Province:
Aleppo Conquest is an anti-regime, anti-ISIS group that is singularly focused on    
the liberation of Aleppo City.
 Ansar al-Sharia is also active in Aleppo and is opposed to the Assad regime.  But Ansar al-Sharia is a fundamentalist group with possible ties to ISIS.  Their goal is to introduce Sharia Law to Aleppo City.
The group Euphrates Volcano is an interesting group, who do not necessarily oppose the Assad government, but fights against ISIS and other Islamist and Kurdish extremist factions.

Idlib Province:
Jaysh al-Fatah Idlib is exclusively focused on eliminating all regime forces in Idlib Province.
The group Battle of Victory is opposed to the Assad regime, and is determined to occupy the city of Jisr al-Shughour.

Hama Province:
Jaysh al-Fatah Idlib is also active in Hama Province, and is determined to keep the Sahel al-Ghab plain from remaining in government hands.
Jaysh L-Nasr is opposed to the Assad regime, and can be found in small units, operating throughout Syria.

Homs Province:
Victory of the Oppressed is opposed to both the Assad regime and ISIS, and works to provide support to the local population.

Damascus Province:
The Eastern Ghouta Unified Command is a group focused on liberating the Eastern Ghouta suburb of Damascus from regime occupation.  Ghouta envisions a community without the Assad puppets, that provides representation and works to improve the lives of the local population.
One Flag Alliance is dedicated to the total overthrow of the Assad regime.
Jaysh al-Fatah Qalamoun fights to liberate the Qalamoun region from regime and Hezbollah forces. The Gathering of Western Qalamoun is also opposed to the Assad regime and the presence of Hezbollah in Syria.
The Eastern Qalamoun Operations Room is opposed to both the regime and ISIS.

Dera'a and Quneitra Province:
Jaysh al-Harmoun is focused on eliminating the Assad regime elements southwest of Damascus. Jaysh al-Fatah al-Janoub fights to liberate the suburbs of Western Ghouta in Damascus from the Assad Regime.
The Southern Front is opposed to tyranny and extremism, and fights to bring representative government to the Syrian people.

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