Syria

In 1946, Syria gained full independence from France. The country faced constant political instability and coups until the rise of Alawite military figure Hafez al Assad in 1970. Syria participated in all of the joint Arab wars against Israel from 1948 through 1973.  Syria has a long-standing dispute with Israel over the Golan Heights, conquered by Israel during the 1967 Six Day War. In 1976, Syria occupied Lebanon, and continued to do so until 2005. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the government repressed an Islamist uprising with violent brutality. Bashar al-Assad came to power in 2000 after the death of his father who himself came to power in a military coup. Under Bashar, the regime sponsored jihadist attacks against the U.S. military in Iraq and built a nuclear facility, with North Korean assistance, which was destroyed by the Israeli Air Force. Since March 2011, the Arab Spring has challenged Bashar’s claim to leadership.  In response to the unrest, Assad’s forces have slaughtered over 110,000 people, including via the use of chemical weapons. Assad receives extensive military support from Iran, Russia, and Hezbollah.

  • Population
    22,457,336
  • GDP
    $64.7 Billion
  • Fit for Service
    9,939,661
  • Military EXHD
    3.6% of GDP

Syrian army steps up strikes on capital’s last rebel enclave

The Syrian army stepped up shelling and air strikes on the last rebel-held enclaves in the Syrian capital on Monday, its heaviest bombardment in a two-month campaign, rebels and witnesses said. From the strategic Qasyoun Heights that overlooks Damascus, elite units of the army pounded Jobar district, some 2 km (1.2 miles) east of the […]

Counter-ISIS Campaign to Intensify, Mattis Says

The U.S.-led coalition will accelerate its campaign to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said today in a joint press conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, with Defense Minister Claus Hjort Frederiksen. “We will further accelerate this fight to free people from ISIS’ crushing occupation and [the] enemy’s terror threat to […]

A Russian-Backed Deal on ‘Safe Zones’ for Syria Leaves U.S. Wary

Russia, Iran and Turkey said Thursday that they have agreed to create “de-escalation zones” across four areas in Syria, renewing diplomatic ­efforts to bring warring parties in the country to heel after six years of fighting. Meeting in the Kazakh capital, Astana, the three powers said the cease-fire deal would come into force Saturday and would apply to […]

Russia, Turkey Agree to Support Safe-Zones in Syria

The presidents of Russia and Turkey said on Wednesday they support the creation of safe-zones in war-torn Syria as a delegation of Syrian rebels walked out of cease-fire talks with the Damascus government underway in Kazakhstan, citing repeated violations of a similar truce agreed on in December. Meeting in the Russian resort town of Sochi, […]

Syrian Forces Used Nerve Gas in Four Recent Attacks: HRW

Syrian government forces used deadly nerve gas in Khan Sheikhun and in three other recent attacks, Human Rights Watch said Monday, describing a “clear pattern” of chemical weapons use that could amount to crimes against humanity. President Bashar al-Assad’s forces are also stepping up chlorine gas attacks and have begun using surface-fired rockets filled with […]

Gaza Rockets, Iranian Fingerprints

Hamas has fired more than 1,400 rockets into Israel, putting roughly two-thirds of the population in range, since the most recent round of violence erupted last week. Many of the variants can be traced back to the tenacious weapons smuggling efforts of Iran. When Israel’s navy seized weapons aboard the Klos-C on the Red Sea in early March, it appeared Israeli […]

American Missiles in Syria

Since the start of the Syrian civil war, the secular-leaning Free Syrian Army has repeatedly called for arms from the United States to help level the playing field against Bashar al-Assad’s better-equipped military. New video indicates that the opposition is finally getting their request. In two new videos posted on YouTube (here and here), rebels […]

The Syrian “M-302” Rockets Intercepted on the Red Sea

Early Wednesday morning, a special operations unit of the Israeli navy conducted what appears to be a long-planned boarding operation of a Panamanian-flagged ship, the Klos-C, which was transiting the Red Sea en route to Port Sudan. Members of the Shayetet 13 commando unit (Israel’s version of the U.S. Navy’s SEAL teams) seized “numerous advanced […]

An Edge in the Desert

Weapons are pouring into the Middle East at an unprecedented rate. The Pentagon recently announced that it would sell six tilt-rotor Osprey aircraft to Israel for $1.3 billion, American hardware (including Apache helicopters) is being rushed to the Iraqi government to help in its battle against al Qaeda, and Washington has also restored military aid to Egypt after a brief hiatus. But Uncle […]

Russian Yakhont Missiles in Hezbollah’s Hands

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that US officials believe the Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah is receiving advanced guided-missiles from Syria despite efforts by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to take them out. If true, this could severely hinder Israel’s ability to operate against the Shiite group in the future. US officials, according to the […]

Category Name
QME

Active Armaments
On Order
Air Defense Systems 1,689* (0)

Aircraft 585* (56)

Artillery 3,368* (0)

Ground Vehicles 7,491* (0)

Guided Munitions 7,580* (10)

Personnel 492,000 (0)

Ships 35 (0)