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The Big Kill Is Coming
by James Dunnigan
June 29, 2011

 It appears that most of the 300,000 man Syrian army (as well as most of the 100,000 police and other security troops) is now considered actually, or potentially, unreliable. The secret police (about 50,000 full-timers on the payroll, and about as many reliable part-timers and gangsters-for-hire) are the major reason for this.  The troops have been told that all the protestors are Islamic radicals (who are not very popular these days, because of all the Islamic radical violence in Iraq), but time-and-again find that there are no religious radicals, only people like them calling for freedom, jobs and reforms. The secret police and loyal troops kill the people, and this drives more and more troops to join the rebels.

Three months of growing violence have left over 1,300 dead, and over 10,000 wounded and/or arrested. An increasing number of people are fleeing the country. Worse, for the government, is that all this violence is not stopping the demonstrations. On the contrary, there are more, and larger, demonstrations every week. President Bashir Assad is said to prefer more reforms and concessions. His brother Maher (who controls most of the loyal troops) and many other hard-liners believe the only solution is force, applied quickly and on a massive scale. This is about to happen, unless there is a rapid spread of the mutiny in the security forces. The government is particularly unpopular because of the growing use of thugs (gangsters loyal to the government, or at least their paymaster) to kill and terrorize civilians. This is a favorite technique throughout the world. Dictators need to terrorize their subjects and terror is something gangsters practice all the time.

Civilians, and rebel soldiers, are fleeing the northern town of Jisr al-Shughour. Hundreds have crossed the border into Turkey. Hundreds of civilians and mutinous soldiers have been killed there in the last few days. The government had been using helicopter gunships and artillery. The town appears to be empty, with most residents gone or hiding.

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