At least 1,600 people were killed in Syria last week, making it the deadliest week yet in the civil war, according to UNICEF.
Patrick McCormick of the U.N. children’s fund said the toll included children, as the government of Bashar al-Assad fights to suppress an 18-month uprising against its rule.
Nearly 5,000 people died in August, according to the Center of Documentation of Violation in Syria, which put the toll for the month at 4,937.
But StrategyPage reports:
Fighting continues in Aleppo and Damascus but the government does not have enough reliable troops to chase down and destroy the poorly armed and supplied rebels in these two cities. Each day the rebels become stronger and the government forces weaker. The government has tried to address these manpower shortages by forming Alawite militias (often with Iranian help). But these gunmen will rarely leave their neighborhoods, feeling that their main responsibility is to defend their own families. These militias often commit more atrocities at neighboring Sunni communities. This further angers the Sunni majority (about 75 percent of the population). The government depends more and more on their artillery and air strikes, which mainly kill civilians and does little to intimidate them into being obedient.
You won’t want to be an Alawite in Syria after this is all over. Hell, there might not be any Alawites in Syria after this is all over — the reprisals are going to be ugly.