BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:15 A.M.) – The rapid defeat of Islamic State forces in eastern Syria over the last several months has seen the Syrian Arab Army capture untold quantities of military equipment from the terrorist group, most of which will likely go into the raising of new pro-government formations.
As Syrian pro-government forces chased ISIS out of its main strongholds along the western shore of Euphrates River, the jihadist faction never had the time to re-locate its weapons stockpiles.
The inevitable result of this was that such stockpiles came into the possession of the Syrian Army.
As video evidence has shown time and time again, the vast loot accumulated thus far comprises not only small arms, but also heavy weapons including mortars, howitzers, field guns, technicals, armored personnel carriers, main battle tanks and guided missiles.
Despite the fact that some Western-made weapon systems (particularly artillery and anti-tank missiles) were found, by far most of the equipment is of Soviet design.
This means that the Syrian Army, itself possessing Soviet/ Russian weapons, has compatible ammunition and spare parts to maintain the captured weapons and thus has the ability to press them into service.
Utilizing this great captured arsenal, it is expected that the Syrian Army will raise new formations, not only within its own service, but also within pro-government militias – namely the National Defence Forces.
In addition to raising new units of local fighters whose job it is to protect recently liberated territories throughout the provinces of Homs, Hama and Deir Ezzor, the army’s 5th Assault Corps formation is also predicted to expand.
To this end, the sheer amount of arms captured from ISIS ensures that many thousands of fresh recruits can be quickly provided with assault rifles and rocket launchers as well as the fire support assets their new units will require.