, 24 tweets, 14 min read Read on Twitter
#Daraa may have been retaken 'in name' by government forces but violence continues to rise. My latest piece for @MEI_CTE "As violence flares up in Daraa, control can be an illusion"

mei.edu/publications/v…
@MEI_CTE 1. The situation in #Daraa has been regressing in recent months, assassinations, checkpoint attacks, fires, & clashes have wreaked havoc in the area and created a number of predicaments
@MEI_CTE 2. Southern #Syria may officially be back under government control, but thousands of opposition fighters never left & stayed under Russian-brokered reconciliation deals
@MEI_CTE 3. The only difference has been that the official Syrian flag was raised and administrative buildings came back into service
@MEI_CTE 4. #Daraa has gone under the radar; hit-and-run strikes on army checkpoints, assassinations, and a general sense of lawlessness increase with every passing day
@MEI_CTE 5. Well over 30 confirmed attacks have taken place in #Daraa over the last three months, and dozens of others scattered along the entire province
@MEI_CTE 6. The situation in the province has only gotten worse and will pose several challenges for the future. Most important being, will the government allow this level of autonomy & guerrilla attacks & presence of irregular forces to continue or will it be reeled in.
@MEI_CTE 7. With some great quotes and analysis from @rrujouleh , @ajaltamimi & @hadeelOueiss
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 8. Just hours after this article was published another assassination took place in the western part of the province reiterating the downwards trajectory #Daraa is currently on.
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 9.Hassan Ali 'Abu Najm' was killed by unknown gunmen who opened fire on him and threw his body near a factory on the edge of al-Mazerib town in western #Daraa
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 10. The longer #Daraa remains semi-autonomous & outside of army/security apparatus' immediate dominion, the more the government will feel the need for action, could the province handle another prolonged insurgency?
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 11. The 'reconciliation' agreements have been widely criticized on all sides of the political spectrum, for many differing reasons, despite their short term impact in freeing up areas, but this is the first genuine case of these agreements failing without solid alternatives
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 12. #Daraa as a case-study is important as it could provide an indicator as to how the government/army will deal with this problem and whether they have learnt any lessons at all from the last 8 years of fighting.
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 13. How long will it be before there is some sort of re-negotiation or an attempt to project the state’s power and sovereignty onto areas that are “with” the government in name, but technically just outside its jurisdiction?
@MEI_CTE @rrujouleh @ajaltamimi @hadeelOueiss 14. In addition to the thousands of 'former fighters' in the province, there are possibly hundreds of hidden weapons stockpiles, small missiles, mortars & small arms stored away and scattered all across the province
15. Yesterday in #Daraa two unknown gunmen in the village of Karak al-Sharqi attacked a Baath-party registered car with hand grenades.
16. And while the lawlessness and attacks on government facilities continue in #Daraa, its important to remember that it's been a full year since the province was retaken and every day the violence increases.
17. The bodies of two people shot dead were found near al-Maziraib town in #Daraa. Names are Marwan Adnan Mahasneh & Qasim Sultan Okasha, both in early 20's & both born in town of Jasem.
18. Breaking: Syrian soldier killed by a sniper in the town of Nowa in #Daraa
19. #SAA solider killed is Ghaith Krum of the 112th Brigade, second killing in the province in the space of days.
20. Breaking: Two unknown gunmen in the town of Daal in #Daraa fire on two policemen in the latest attack in the province.
21. The injured officer's are Ghayath Suhail Haider and Mohamed Nour Fathi, both receiving emergency treatment.
22. Breaking: Unknown gunmen assassinate the local government official in the town of al-Yadouda in #Daraa
23. The local 'Mekhtar" (official/councillor/representative) was Yousef Mahmoud al-Qudsi who was shot and killed immediately
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