It seems that the Syrians have determined their fate, and completely washed their hands of any external interference. They declared on Monday the establishment of five military fronts representing regions of the republic.
This has been the most important announcement since the establishment of the free army that was born in Turkey last year. And with the announcement of the five fronts, the Syrians have eased the burden on neighboring countries, including Turkey, and transferred the management of the battles inward, where it becomes a revolution that means victory or the end of the dream.
We can also read from the establishment of new fronts the most important message; getting ready for the stage following the overthrow of the Assad regime and the strict management of areas threatened by chaos and civil war.
By establishing five military commands, the alternative Syria would be ready to move from opposition to power at the decisive hour, and facing the most serious challenge, chaos and civil war.
What about Turkey and Jordan? They will play a supporting role in the next phase, which the rebels hope to be sooner than later. Regarding Turkey backing off, one of the planners of the Syrian revolution told me this is not true. Turkey will remain an important player, despite the accelerated pace of political action from Doha, Cairo and Jordan.
The goal of transferring military command from Turkey to inside the Syrian border is to relieve pressure on them, and the struggle has reached a more comprehensive stage, and not just sporadic operations managed from across the border.
Certainly Turkey’s role will remain important because it’s the largest and most influential neighbor in the northern region, particularly the largest cities in Syria, Aleppo (Halab). Perhaps, with the insistence of Syrian Revolution to seek their support in the face of Iranian and Russian support for Assad’s regime, Turkey will be in a stronger political position.
The establishment of military fronts is in itself, a challenge for the Syrian Revolution, should it be able to unite brigades and formations. Some of them very small and some are armed with primitive weapons. And some have very limited arms to the degree that fighters take turns in using one piece of weaponry.
There are also armed groups that do not even recognize military chain of command, nor do they obey the orders of the leadership, and some exercise acts no less heinous than those practiced by Assad Army and his mercenaries.
How can the new regional leaders unite all these armed groups, dissident professional soldiers to sporadic rebels? And how will these leaders of five new fronts with their dismantled troops conduct a tough war against a regime powered by an army with all sorts of weapons?
This question should probably be directed at Arab countries and international organizations that bear responsibility, for the opposition has become more unified since the meetings in Oman and Doha, and after announcing that rebels at home have united in military formations.
What is expected from the concerned countries is a great deal. Millions of Syrians have become displaced in their own country.
Tens of thousands of fighters expect more quantitative and qualitative arms and ammunition support, as well as political support for the opposition in the international arena, and finally processing and preparing to support Syria so as not to disintegrate because of the collapse of the regime or by a diversionist conspiracy.
Who knows, the final confrontation might be less bloody, contrary to our expectations. It may politically maintain the body of the state, with its army and institutions, or may be the end will be difficult and bloody.
The writer is the General Manager of Al Arabiya. The article was published in Arab News on Nov. 7, 2012