“Assad is powerful now, not as a president who controls a state but as a warlord, as someone who has more and more sophisticated weapons than the others,” said Hassan Hassan, a Syrian commentator at the Abu Dhabi-based English-language newspaper The National. “He is not capable of winning back the country.”
The civil war has Balkanized the country, with an array of armed groups controlling different areas. The government retains its grip on the capital and has been solidifying its control over a string of major cities to the north.
New York Times: Momentum Shifts in Syria, Bolstering Assad’s Position, July 17 2013
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