For 3 days straight, the Al-Qaeda linked, “Al-Nusra Front” (Jabhat Al-Nusra) has relentlessly stormed the predominately Shi’I villages of Al-Zahra and Nubl in the Aleppo Governorate, attempting to repeatedly break into this isolated Syrian Government stronghold from its eastern perimeter, despite sustaining significant casualties over the last few days.
Unfortunately for the Al-Nusra Front, they ran into fierce resistance from the citizen-led National Defense Forces (NDF) and Hezbollah (Party of God) fighters, who were determined to obstruct their entry into Nubl from the villages of Maayer and Hayyan. They were successful in maintaining their defenses for 3 straight days, thanks to their determination, and the Syrian Arab Air Force’s (SAAF) prevalent airstrikes on the enemy combatants’ positions and their airdropped supplies to Hezbollah and the NDF.
According to an NDF source in Aleppo, the Al-Nusra Front has suffered over 175 casualties in 3 days, including the loss of 3 field commanders and a number of foreign fighters from North Africa, Chechnya, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Kazakhstan, Jordan, and Palestine. The source also added that at least 220 Al-Nusra Front fighters were estimated to have been wounded in the fierce clashes that immersed the 3 days in Al-Zahra and Nubl.
The Al-Nusra Front is facing a major defeat in Al-Zahra and Nubl, as their 2nd attempt in 2 months to take these imperative and densely populated villages is on the verge of failure. The Al-Nusra Front risked many fighters last month when they took Wadi Al-Deif in the Aleppo Governorate; however, they were able to make gains around the base – it is not the case at Al-Zahra and Nubl because they are suffering significant casualties and making little to no gains.