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The Balance of Weakness in the Syrian Civil War

Dec. 15, 2016 We examine the three main actors that control territory in Syria.

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  • Last updated: December 15
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Summary

Retaking Aleppo is a major accomplishment for the Syrian regime, and in the future this victory could help it consolidate its position in the western half of the country. At present, however, the regime is too weak to re-establish its control in the eastern parts. Furthermore, the impotence of the Syrian rebels, an incoherent group to begin with, is clear by the loss of Aleppo. Beyond the Syrian regime, the Islamic State (IS) and the Kurds are the only other significant indigenous forces controlling substantial chunks of territory in Syria. Turkey could alter this balance, but it would have to increase its intervention in the country and overhaul the rebel landscape in order to do so.

Retaking Aleppo represents a remarkable comeback; however, the regime of President Bashar al-Assad remains weak.
The loss of Aleppo has exposed the rebels as overrated and incoherent.
Three main players now have significant territorial holdings in Syria: the regime, IS and the

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The Balance of Weakness in the Syrian Civil War