It has been a rough week in northwestern Syria for the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS) as both of their offensives inside the Hama and Aleppo Governorates ended in a massive retreat towards the their provincial capital of Al-Raqqa.
While ISIS’ offensive along the Khanasser-Ithriya Highway was forestalled last week, their large-scale assault on the Al-Safira District was continued two days ago when they attempted to break-through the Syrian Arab Army’s frontline defenses at the imperative Kurdish town of Tal ‘Arn.
Unfortunately, these past 48 hours have not been kind to the terrorist group, as they have reportedly suffered over 60 casualties during their failed assault on Tal ‘Arn; this marks the second highest death toll for ISIS in the last three days – the first being Deir Ezzor on Tuesday.
The purpose of this offensive was to alleviate the pressure that was applied by the Syrian Arab Army in the Deir Hafer Plains of east Aleppo; however, their assault did very little to deter the Syrian Armed Forces from advancing towards the besieged Kuweires Military Airport.
Instead, ISIS’ large concentration of fighters to the Al-Safira District opened a gap for the Syrian Armed Forces to advance inside Sheikh Ahmad, leaving the terrorist group’s combatants in this strategic town at the mercy of the pro-government forces.
With the Syrian Armed Forces on the fringes of the Kuweires Military Airport, ISIS’ bold attempt to capture Tal ‘Arn has had an adverse affect on their defenses; if they are not able to repel the pro-government forces, their regional stronghold will be in danger.