Colonel Suheil Al-Hassan of the Syrian Arab Army’s Special Forces Brigade known as the “Tiger Forces” (Qawat Al-Nimr) has become one of the most popular and feared officers in the this conflict, as his victories have birthed new life in an embattled army spread across Syria.
Born in the city of Jableh, Latakia in 1970, Colonel Hussein lives a quiet life, despite his notoriety around the country. He is married and has one son – they are the inspiration for his poetry and desire for victory.
Similar to Brigadier General Issam Zahreddine, Colonel Hussein began his military career attending the Homs Military College, where he graduated with the rank of Lieutenant in 1991.
He was quickly inducted into the Syrian Air Force Defense’s Special Operations Unit, where he would oversee the training and development of Syria’s paratrooper contingents of the Syrian Arab Army (SAA).
The Syrian Arab Army’s Central Command was impressed with Colonel Hassan’s work ethic and effectiveness that they decided to transfer him to the Syrian Air Force Intelligence headquarters; this move was coincided with the rise of Al-Qaeda activity from 2005-2006 – he was stationed in Damascus.
Known to be relentless and prudent, Colonel Hassan infiltrated Al-Qaeda networks inside of Syria, resulting in the arrest of a number of terrorists operating within the borders of the country.
In 2011, Colonel Hassan was transferred the SAA’s Special Forces (Qawat Al-Khassa) – he led the defense against the Syrian Al-Qaeda Branch “Jabhat Al-Nusra” (Al-Nusra Front) on the outskirts of Latakia in 2013. His success during the defense of Latakia led many in the Central Command to recommend his transfer to other fronts.
Following Latakia, the Colonel spent his time in Hama until he was awarded a special project by the Central Command in the fall of 2013 – he was tasked to train and lead a Special Forces unit that would work primarily as an offensive unit.
Colonel Hassan handpicked many of the soldiers that would later form the Tiger Forces; this included his close confidant and companion, Captain Lu’ayy Al-Sleitan.
As of February 2015, Colonel Hassan has yet to lose a battle during this Syrian conflict – his unit is well-renowned for its success and ferociousness in battle, as they have liberated the Aleppo Central Prison, the town of Morek in northern Hama, and the Al-Sha’ar Gas Fields in Homs.
Currently, Colonel Hassan is being transferred to the northern Aleppo front, where he is tasked to combat his notorious foes from Jabhat Al-Nusra.