A grenade attack targeting the Damascus headquarters of the Syrian Baath party is just one more indication that the armed resistance to Assad's rule is rising and that the chances of a full scale civil war are growing by the week. Bloomberg:
While the opposition in Syria is becoming an armed resistance, any outside military intervention would be pitted against a "really modern air force," said Anthony Cordesman, a military analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "They know how to use their surface-to-air missiles," and can draw on an experienced army with thousands of tanks, Cordesman said. "Talking about a casual use of force, something like the no-fly zone we had inside Libya, simply isn't tenable." The eight-month revolt against Assad's rule has begun to splinter the army, squeeze the economy and weaken support among erstwhile backers. Jordan's King Abdullah has said that Assad should step down. In the past week, defectors launched a rocket- propelled grenade assault on a military security building in Damascus. Syria's people, not Assad's government, are suffering from international sanctions imposed because of the crackdown on protests, central bank Governor Adib Mayaleh said. While the Syrian pound is trading within a reasonable range, Syrians should avoid speculation in the currency that would put their assets at risk, he said on state television today. Assad said military action against Syria would create an "earthquake" across the Middle East.