Since I left Syria back in April things have changed dramatically. Where before Islamist group Al Nusra had no connection with Al Qaeda, now there is a group of ex Jabhat al Nusra that has splintered away and is now fully on side with them, and they make the original Al Nusra look like a group of choirboys in comparison. As for for the main Al Nusra group, they have been infiltrated by the Syrian regime and Iran, being supported by them with all the money and equipment they need. The aim of this being to ever increase sectarianism, divide and conquer is the name of that particular game.
Iran is now using its air-force to bomb the Sunni rebels and are dramatically scaling up the resources they are putting into this conflict. The international community has made a serious miscalculation of Iran’s strength. They thought that getting Iran to fight in Syria would wear it down and weaken it, if anything the opposite is proving to be true. If things continue the way they are, Iran will be the de facto government in Syria if they win this war. From there it is only a very short hop to taking control of Lebanon. They already pretty much have Iraq in their pocket. After Lebanon who comes next? Saudi Arabia? It is getting to the point where nothing short of a tactical nuclear strike will be able to interfere with the Iranian plan. You might laugh at me for writing this but if Iran win in Syria the options for action will be very much reduced and will have to be all or nothing.
Then there is the refugee situation, the numbers of Syrian refugees is staggering and rapidly increasing. At least 2 million and climbing, this is having a major destabilizing effect on Lebanon and Jordan. Politically and economically they can’t handle it. If the refugees are seen as a threat by local populations there will be outbreaks of violence which could very quickly get out of hand. Just think about the problem of trying to control 1 million angry refugees who don^t get enough food and medicine.
This could lead to Jordan attempting to annex part of southern Syria, which has already been taken over by the Sunni rebels, from there repatriating many of the Syrian refugees and at the same time gaining control of the very good quality ground water supplies that Jordan so badly wants.
There are so many different elements to what is going on, and over the next weeks and months things are going to happen that will take many by surprise due to subtle cause and effect of so many actions and reactions. There will be global consequences to what is happening in Syria. Pandora’s box has been opened.