BEIRUT, LEBANON (10:45 P.M.) – The Syrian Arab Army’s elite 42nd Brigade (Ghiath Forces) of the 4th Division has been given orders to redeploy from the occupied Golan Heights region to the eastern countryside of the Dara’a Governorate, an officer from the unit told Al-Masdar News this evening.
According to the officer, the 42nd Brigade will be leading the offensive to retake the strategic Nassib Crossing in southeast Dara’a.
The 42nd Brigade will be joined by a number of brigades from the 4th and 7th divisions, along with several units from the Republican Guard.
This major operation will be led by the prominent commander of the 42nd Brigade, Colonel Ghiath Dalla.
Colonel Dalla has commanded the 42nd Brigade in several operations in the past, including the battles for Beit Jinn, Al-Zabadani, Khan Al-Sheih, and Darayya.
The 42nd Brigade commander is considered one of the Syrian military’s most intelligent officers, as his track record in battle has been perfect.
Colonel Dalla will not put his expertise to work in east Daraa, as the capture of the Nassib Crossing is one of the top priorities of the southern Syria offensive.
According to a military source in Damascus, the Syrian Arab Army’s first major operation in the Dara’a Governorate will concentrate on the eastern countryside of the province.
In particular, the Syrian military offensive will focus on the Nassib Crossing and the towns surrounding this imperative border region.
The Syrian Arab Army lost the Nassib Crossing to the Islamist rebels in early 2015.
The loss of the Nassib Crossing led to the Syrian Army’s complete collapse in the southeastern countryside of Dara’a, as they would later lose the historical city of Busra Al-Sham.
Once southeast Dara’a was lost, the Free Syrian Army’s Southern Front Brigades and Jabhat Al-Nusra attempted to push into the Al-Sweida Governorate; however, this offensive would ultimately fail after several thousand people in this province took arms to protect their homes from the insurgency.
Since the failed rebel offensive in Al-Sweida, the Syrian Arab Army and National Defense Forces (NDF) have retaken almost the entire province.
Meanwhile, in southeast Dara’a, this front has been mostly dead until recently, as the de-escalation zone had mostly halted the fighting for a year.
The Syrian Army is now poised to retake southeast Dara’a and the Nassib Crossing, despite the objections from the U.S. State Department.