Friday, February 17, 2012

Barry Rubin: Report from Behind the Lines in Syria: An Interview with Dr. Jonathan Spyer

By Barry Rubin

Dr. Jonathan Spyer, GLORIA Center senior fellow, has just returned from Syria where he met with oppositionists, members of the Free Syrian Army, and local inhabitants. Here's his first interview on his experiences and observations.

Barry Rubin: Dr. Spyer, please tell us about your visit to Syria, what you saw and your impressions.

Jonathan Spyer: Well, I spent a week in Idleb province, traveling between a number of different towns. The most striking aspect was the extent of de facto control that the opposition and Free Syrian Army (FSA) have in this area. A number of towns are now entirely under their control, with FSA roadblocks at the entrance and the rebel flag flying everywhere. At the same time, it's of course clear that the government still has intelligence networks inside the "liberated" towns, and will reconquer them if possible at a later date.

Barry Rubin: Many observers claim that the Bashar al-Assad regime will fall soon. What do the opposition activists think and what is your
Continue reading Report from Behind the Lines in Syria: An Interview with Dr. Jonathan Spyer

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). His latest book is Israel: An Introduction, to be published by Yale University Press in January 2012. You can read more of Barry Rubin's posts at Rubin Reportsand now on his new blog, Rubin Reports, on Pajamas Media

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