first published on March 23, 2018 by Will
A video out of the Eastern Ghouta neighborhood of Douma shows incendiary munitions, likely white phosphorous, raining down and igniting residential structures.
It’s unclear whether the strikes are being carried out by Syrian or Russian warplanes , but the effects are apparent. Although white phosphorous is often used as a smoke munition for screening or marking, these rounds are likely being used to simply terrify the residents to continue pressuring them to give up the rebels.
Obviously the rounds will not be marking anything at night, and pro-Assad troops are likely too incompetent to tactically maneuver at night, so screening is out of the question as well. The brilliantly burning rounds are there to cause terror.
The Russian-backed hellish onslaught against Eastern Ghouta seems to have worked in Assad’s favor. One of the major rebel groups in the region, the Rahman Corps, has accepted a Russian offer to allow for the evacuation of 7,000 fighters and civilians beginning on Saturday.
The Rahman Corps’ press release differs from the pro-Syrian government’s as they claim that they will only be evacuating wounded fighters. Part of the deal includes a prisoner exchange as well as allowing Russian troops control of Irbin, Zamalka, Ein Tarma and Jobar neighborhoods.
On Wednesday, Ahrar ash Sham agreed to a similar deal with the Russians and gave up the town of Harasta. Douma, the town being fire bombed in the video, is reportedly the only Eastern Ghouta neighborhood still under belligerent rebel control. Douma is currently controlled by the Jaysh al Islam rebel group.