The Syrian Al-Qaeda group “Jabhat Al-Nusra” has suffered a series of defeats in the Qalamoun Mountains of the Rif Dimashq Governorate over the last two weeks, as Hezbollah and the Syrian Armed Forces have overwhelmed the enemy combatants during their counter-offensive in this rugged area overlooking the strategic Lebanese-Syrian border.
On Monday, Hezbollah – in coordination with the Syrian Arab Army’s 128th and 20th Brigades of the 1st Armored Division – captured the imperative Faleeta Barrens located directly north of Ras Al-Marra; this was one of the final areas under the control of Jabhat Al-Nusra that was relatively uncontested since the inception of this counter-offensive in the Qalamoun Mountains.
In addition to the capture of the Faleeta Barrens, Hezbollah and the Syrian Armed Forces advanced from the integral mountain-top of Tal Al-Moussa that overlooks the Beqa’a Governorate, towards the final Jabhat Al-Nusra border-crossing at Jaroud Faleeta and Jaroud ‘Arsal, where they were able to assert full-control after fierce clashes with the enemy combatants.
The capture of this border-crossing at Jaroud ‘Arsal and Jaroud Faleeta has resulted in the obstruction of Jabhat Al-Nusra’s vital supply route that flows through the Beqa’a Governorate of Lebanon into the western part of the Qalamoun Mountains of Syria.
With the western part of the Qalamoun Mountains secured, Hezbollah and the Syrian Armed Forces are preparing for their final assault on Jubbah Heights, where the remaining Jabhat Al-Nusra militants are entrenched in these green hills that separate the two directional slopes of the Qalamoun Mountains.
What does the capture of the Qalamoun Mountains mean? If the Syrian Government can take full-control of the Qalamoun Mountains, they will have successfully gained full access to the Syrian-Lebanese border-crossing into the Beqa’a Governorate; this will pay dividends for the Lebanese Government, as they combat the extremists from Jabhat Al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham.