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Rebel fighters in Aleppo outmanned and outgunned by Syrian army

People carry a body of a person killed in clashes in Aleppo, Syria, Friday, July 27, 2012.

Alberto Prieto/Associated Press

Despite the enormous disparity in the size and equipment going up against the Syrian military, opposition fighters reportedly continue to assemble in Aleppo. There now are at least 4,000, observers say. It would appear to be a strategic mistake.

Lightly armed fighters are no match for the heavily-armed well-disciplined Syrian forces, even with the use of explosive devices and the deployment of snipers. The rebel forces are better suited for a hit-and-run style insurgency.

The likely demise of so many opposition members in this "mother of all battles" may generate sympathy and international outrage, but such momentary public relations advantages will come at the cost of losing large numbers of fighters that will take a long time to replace.

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More than that, the almost suicidal tactic in Aleppo, hard on the heels of the opposition defeat in Damascus, will make many potential fighters question the quality of decision-making at the helm of the opposition.

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About the Author
Global Affairs reporter

As Global Affairs Writer, Patrick Martin’s primary focus is on the turbulent Middle East, to which he travels regularly. He has twice been posted to the region – from 1991-95 and from 2008-12. More

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