by Fadi Dahouk
The Islamic State started in the adjacent areas to the eastern country side in Al-Sweida a new phase of the expansion plan they were seeking in the direction of the south. And till now, the movements does not indicate to a near work that the (ISIL) might do in Sweida, although the accounts of its supporters on Twitter started talking daily about the area they’re newly recognizing.
The talk about the intention of the (ISIL) bases itself on many data, most notably that the Badia area in now under its control almost entirely, especially when it achieved full control over the Tanf bored crossing between Syria and Iraq, and it is a very advanced position to the Islamic State towards its centering sites in the eastern north to Al-Sweida, in the Bir Kasb areas, and AL-Qaser, and Tal Ashahyb, and Shanwan, and Rajm Al-Dawla and Tal Dakwa; the last position is the richest place in terms of the elements of normal life and the (ISIL) group and weapons.
The attack on an area such as Al-Sweida needs a central decision by (ISIL), and the availability of a fast supply routes, till now, the terms of the routes are not available because of the (ISIL) forces movements from the Badia to the Syrian south by through the desert area, also the attack on the durze Hakef village may not be a central decision taken by (ISIL), As much as it’s a decision by the gathering of the Supporter to it from the Bedouins or the princes of that border, but on all cases this development shows and warns the seriousness of (ISIL), and its ability on opening a road for it towards Al-Sweida, reaching Daraa and Al-Qunaitra, and these are very vital areas in the Syrian map.
The choosing of the (ISIL) for an area such as Al-Sweida as a cross towards its expansion in the south factors that it’s an easy target, because the regime doesn’t have a military weight in it, or in its surroundings, after the collapses its forces witnessed in the southern area, but it owns a security ascendancy, and the latter became threatened by the people of Al-Sweida themselves, who now has their own local armed formations, and it became able to face that security ascendancy furiously, they were able by it to release a large number of the detainees that were captured by the security branches in order to force them to join the Syrian Army.
The options seems very limited for Al-Sweida to face this danger, as the movements of its people, in comparison with (ISIL) movements seems very slow, and it’s ruled by a “Don Quixote” logic which evokes an old past that doesn’t match the battle and the time evolution, because they’re not the fighters that were with Sultan Pasha Al-Atrash during the major Syrian revolution, nor (ISIL) is a clear enemy as the French occupation. And the widespread of the Druze in the area, between Jordan, Syria, Palestine, and Lebanon, is unreliable in front of this kind of threaten to improve the terms of the confrontation with the (ISIL), because (ISIL) is not an armed movement that has a supporter who provide it with weapons that can be pressured on through the traditional Druze leaders relations, political or religious, in order to spare Al-Sweida from the battle. And for that, there wouldn’t be anything in front of Al-Sweida Druze but to blend with the rebels in Daraa, who are showing an absolute clearance in their hostility towards (ISIL). And this reality is noticed remarkably by (ISIL), with it entering formally, Tuesday (03 May), a battle in the Lajat area and the announcement of its presence in a large area of the eastern Daraa villages belt adjacent to the western villages of Al-Sweida, which means that (ISIL) moved now to the phase of isolating Al-Sweida from Daraa preventing any support or help, or an alliance scenario between the rebels of Horan and Al-Sweida to confront it.
It became clear that (ISIL) will keep a state of instability in the south in this phase, through the start of the movements of clans pledging to it, and they’re clans shifting in loyalty, as they were on a close relationship with the regime in range of trades and smuggling and the kidnapping operations, and the experiences in the countryside of Aleppo and Homs and Hama proved that these clans are a strong incubators of the (ISIL), and the expansion through it became a consistent policy at (ISIL), as it intersect with it in many things, especially that the two parties do not recognize the concept of the state and the national identity.
The free Syrian army forces in Daraa will be able to resolve the battle quickly in Al-Lajat but that does not mean that the area will stabilize permanently. And in this battle The Yarmouk Army which is subject to the southern front, is currently a spearhead, and maybe it’s a favorable opportunity to think of this step in Al-Sweida, especially that The Druze has a near experience with The Yarmouk Army, and the Hawks of the South Alliance which has the Yarmouk Army in its lines, when it led the battle of the control over Busra Al-Sham and prevented an attack by the extremists on the Jabal al-Druze, and if that got achieved Al-Sweida and Daraa will have refused a bad neighbor seeking to live between them.