Nytt

Opprørerne i Syria viser stadig flere tegn på manglende kontroll og moral: man ydmyker sivile for bagateller og dreper forsvarsløse fanger på grusomste vis. Det har ikke opprørerne råd til. De er helt avhengige av støtte i befolkningen. Denne synkende kampmoralen bidrar til at krigen trekker ut og blir stadig mer grusom.

Anna Bernard har en meget god artikkel om hvordan borgerkrigen har tatt en ny retning. Den er nå blitt en utmattelseskrig. Antall drepte anslås nå til 40.000.

Syria’s rebel fighters — who have long staked claim to the moral high ground for battling dictatorship — are losing crucial support from a public increasingly disgusted by the actions of some rebels, including poorly planned missions, senseless destruction, criminal behavior and the coldblooded killing of prisoners.

Opprørernes synkende moral forbindes med tilstrømmingen av utenlandske krigere.

The rebel shortcomings have been compounded by changes in the opposition, from a force of civilians and defected soldiers who took up arms after the government used lethal force on peaceful protesters to one that is increasingly seeded with extremist jihadis. That radicalization has divided the fighters’ supporters and made Western nations more reluctant to give rebels the arms that might help break the intensifying deadlock. Instead, foreign leaders are struggling to find indirect ways to help oust Syria’s president, Bashar al-Assad.

En video som viser hvordan opprørerne dreper tilfangetatte regjeringssoldater har sjokkert omverdenen. Det er tonen, måten. Det var ikke bare en henrettelse, noe av denne likegyldigheten fremkommer i videoen under, der man skjærer ører av drepte fanger.

The video purporting to show the extrajudicial killings of loyalist soldiers appeared to have been made at the Hamcho military checkpoint in Saraqib, a town in Idlib Province in northern Syria that has been the scene of particularly brutal fighting.

In the video, captors force 10 prisoners, some pleading for their lives, to lie next to or atop one another. The antigovernment fighters, whose precise identities or affiliations were not clear, yell “Allah Akhbar!” or “God is great!” A few even parade before the camera as others kick and herd the prisoners into a pile before shooting them from multiple directions.

Definert som borgerkrig

Det drapsmennene ikke visste, og som heller ikke norsk offentlighet ser ut til å ha fått med seg når man diskuterer om norske jihadister kan komme til å begå lovbrudd, er at Røde Kors har definert konflikten som en borgerkrig, ikke et opprør, slik at begge parter er bundet av konvensjonene for krigføring.

..
 The killers apparently did not know, or did not care, about an important legal change in the definition of the Syrian conflict decreed in July by the International Committee of the Red Cross. It said Syria was engrossed in a civil war, subject to the Geneva Convention on the treatment of victims of war. Under that change, the execution of a soldier not in combat and with no means of protection is considered a war crime.

Mister sympati

Overgrep og lunefull vold mot sivile, og ødeleggelser av viktig infrastruktur uten grunn, gjør at befolkningen vender seg mot opprørerne.

 

And now arrogance and missteps are draining enthusiasm from some of the fighters’ core supporters.

“They were supposed to be the people on whom we depend to build a civil society,” lamented a civilian activist in Saraqib, a northern town where rebels were videotapedexecuting a group of unarmed Syrian soldiers, an act the United Nations has declared a likely war crime.

An activist in Aleppo, Ahmed, who like some of the others who were interviewed gave only one name for security reasons, said he had begged rebels not to camp in a neighborhood telecommunications office. But they did, and government attacks knocked out phone service.

One fighter shot into the air when customers at a bakery did not let him cut into a long line for bread, Ahmed recalled. Another, he said, was enraged when a man washing his car accidentally splashed him. “He shot at him,” Ahmed said. “But thank God he wasn’t a good shot, so the guy wasn’t hurt.”

Small acts of petty humiliation and atrocities like executions have led many more Syrians to believe that some rebels are as depraved as the government they fight. The activist from Saraqib said he saw rebels force government soldiers from a milk factory, then destroy it, even though residents needed the milk and had good relations with the owner.

“They shelled the factory and stole everything,” the activist said. “Those are repulsive acts.”

Even some of the uprising’s staunchest supporters are beginning to fear that Syria’s sufferings — lost lives, fraying social fabric, destroyed heritage — are for naught.

Desillusjonerte
Befolkningen mister håp. De har ofret mye. Var det for ingenting. En slik følelse av håpløshet kan få store konsekvenser, fysisk og mentalt.

Small acts of petty humiliation and atrocities like executions have led many more Syrians to believe that some rebels are as depraved as the government they fight. The activist from Saraqib said he saw rebels force government soldiers from a milk factory, then destroy it, even though residents needed the milk and had good relations with the owner.

“They shelled the factory and stole everything,” the activist said. “Those are repulsive acts.”

Even some of the uprising’s staunchest supporters are beginning to fear that Syria’s sufferings — lost lives, fraying social fabric, destroyed heritage — are for naught.

Rebels’ Missteps Weaken Support Among Syrians

U.N. Says Execution Video From Syria Shows Apparent War Crime