Two weeks after liberating the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur) from the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS), the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and their allies are preparing for the mother of all battles: Aleppo.
While Palmyra’s offensive had approximately 6,000 active military personnel deployed at the city’s gates before its liberation, the Aleppo assault will have nearly double that number.
However, the scale of this offensive was underestimated; it was originally believed to be limited to the provincial capital of the Aleppo Governorate, but this no longer seems to be the case.
According to a military source in Damascus, the government offensive is expected to include a large part of the Aleppo countryside that is currently under the control of the extremist rebels.
The primary targets appear to be rebel strongholds of ‘Anadan, Hayyan, Haritan, and Kafr Hamra; if captured, they will have effectively encircled the rebel forces inside of Aleppo City.
More importantly, if the aforementioned towns are captured, the rest of Mount Simeon will follow after, including much of western Aleppo.