Retired Senator Richard Black: Syrian army fights with enormous bravery and with exceptional tactical skill

Senator Richard H. Black (Ret.) has said that it is time for al Qaeda in Syria to surrender , pointing out that the U.S. gives diplomatic and military support to the so-called “Syrian opposition” in Idlib, despite the U.S. State Department’s $10 million bounty on its leader.

In a letter sent today to Syria Times e-newspaper, the Senator said: "I am quite pleased by the news from Idlib Province.  The Syrian Army has fought with enormous bravery and with exceptional tactical skill."

He indicated that the liberation of Khan Sheikhoun from terrorist group was an unexpected victory. "It reflected a serious failure of leadership within al-Nusra Front. The sudden collapse of Khan Sheikhoun dramatically undermined terrorist resistance.  It triggered a series of events that led to the capture of Saraqib, which blocked the terrorists’ access to the M-5 and much of the M-4 Highways."

The retired senator went on to say: "In the midst of fighting for the highways, the 4th Armored Division launched supporting attacks that quickly developed into a major drive across the suburbs of Aleppo that still remained in the hands of Hayat Tahrir al Sham. The dispirited rebels’ defenses soon collapsed, and the terrorists were completely driven from Aleppo. The M-5 Highway was opened, and the Aleppo Airport was soon reopened for the first time since 2012."

"Citizens of Aleppo wildly celebrated the rebels’ crushing defeat by honking horns and firing guns into the sky, late into the night. The Turks swore to retake the lost ground. But this week, when the Turks organized a large mechanized taskforce and attacked Nayrab in an effort to gain control of the vital highway intersection at Saraquib, they were soundly defeated. The task force lost 100 elite troops and some armored vehicles.  Their resounding defeat could be a one-time blunder, but the "rebels" seem to be repeatedly making major errors of strategic significance. When they eventually did force the Syrian Army to withdraw from Nayrab , the Syrian army simply  opened a fresh line of attack and captured 12 new towns in Southern Idlib."

Colonel Black [Ret.] underlined that al Nusra Front is still the dominant military organization in Idlib, and its commander, al Joulani, is a specially designated terrorist because of his loyalty to al Qaeda. "The U.S. gives diplomatic and military support to the so-called “Syrian opposition” in Idlib, despite the U.S. State Department’s $10 million bounty on its leader."

Turkey is on its own

Moreover, the veteran lawmaker referred to reports that dozens of terrorists were captured attempting to escape into Turkey to avoid fighting in the deadly battles in Idlib.  "They seemed to be panicking and losing hope in the once-glorious 'revolution'.

"Russia has remained steadfast in supporting Syria, and it controls Syrian airspace along with the Syrian Air Force. Meanwhile, the U.S. is preoccupied by the November presidential elections.  Turkey is on its own," he added.

"If Syria captures both the M-4 and M-5 Highways, the 'rebels' movements will be severely restricted.  They are running short of room to maneuver, and the 'rebel civilians' are compressed against the Turkish border."

He concluded by saying: "It is time for al Qaeda in Syria to surrender, and end the suffering of the people. If they cared at all about the civilians they control, they would lay down their arms and wave the white flag of surrender."

Basma Qaddour

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