Syria’s army isn’t capable of controlling the entire country right now in their civil war, but that doesn’t mean the Syrian regime is conceding defeat or that breaking up the country into various states is a viable option. President Bashar al-Assad, in a speech covered on the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), called the battle a “war of existence” and that “terrorists” have taken some areas as their state sponsors have “increased their support to them.” Despite that, Assad claimed things weren’t collapsing.
“Are the Syrian Armed Forces optimally capable of carrying out their tasks well and protecting the homeland?” asked Assad according to SANA. “I don’t like exaggerations, so I am giving a scientific, practical, true, and realistic answer: Yes, certainly it is capable, and comfortably so.”
Assad argued that the Syrian army faces a complex opponent and have strategic priorities for determining where the armed forces can fight and that the army can’t be everywhere at once—stating that the civil war has been that way since the beginning.
“It is natural that battles have ups and downs, but in the war we are fighting now, the armed forces cannot be omnipresent in every part of the Syrian lands, which makes it possible for terrorists to enter areas and strike their stability until the Syrian army comes to liberate them,” said Assad.
Assad, who refers to all opposition forces as terrorists, refused to concede that Syria should break up into a collection of various states determined by ethnic and sectarian differences. He argued that Syrians have not yet accepted that should be their reality, and so it is not destined to be so.
However, he warned that mindsets can change while exhorting people to be careful about they characterize the conflict as a “civil war” and not a fight with external terrorists as the Assad regime describes it.
Despite Assad’s confidence in his military, he did encourage more volunteers and other armed support from the nation’s populace—a move that implied things may not be as positive as he claims.
His argument that his security forces have been battling terrorists also isn’t being accepted by others. United States spokesman Mark Toner slammed the Syrian regime’s actions towards innocents in another condemnation on Friday.
“The regime continues to imprison tens of thousands of Syrians without fair trials, including women, children, doctors, humanitarian aid providers, human rights defenders, journalists, and others who it routinely subjects to torture, sexual violence, and inhumane conditions,” said Toner in a press release from the State Department.
“The United States strongly condemns the arbitrary arrests and charges against Syrian human rights defenders and journalists, and demands the immediate release of all political prisoners and persons arbitrarily detained.”
(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, July 26, 2015)