I’d like to introduce our newest contributing editor. Army veteran-turned photo journalist,  Coty Giannelli (full bio below). Here’s his latest, which I’m sure you’ll find very insightful. Welcome aboard, Coty.  

-Brandon Webb, Editor-in-Chief

As the Syrian Revolution enters into its third year and the death toll rises to around 120,000, the international community has still done little to help stabilize the region. Obama’s administration has acknowledged that the Syrian government had crossed the “red line” with the use of chemical weapons. The U.S. has now pledged lethal aid in the form of small arms, rocket-propelled grenades and anti-tank missiles, to certain rebel groups fighting in Syria.

“We wish we could tell the difference between the colored lines. We are fed up with the red lines, yellow lines and green lines,” said Abu Hassam, a retired Syrian Army officer who now teaches military tactics at a small FSA squad, mocking President Obama’s recent declaration that Assad’s regime had crossed a red line. “The big players [of the world] are saying much but doing little.”

Abu Hassam is not the only Syrian who feels this way. At this point in the revolution, many Syrians, fighters and civilians, have lost all hope that the international community will step in to provide the aid they need. The international communities’ lack of intervention says to many of the Syrians that the world is “condoning” Assad Bashar’s actions against his people.

“If they do not want to help [the fighters] at least help the [civilians] here,” said Hussein, an English teacher who used to live in London. He now leads a small platoon of fighters a little North of Aleppo in Hritan. “They did not choose to be in the middle of this.”

That thought is shared throughout the military community in the areas around Aleppo. In fact, many of the leaders are confident that they can win the revolution without international aid, though it will take longer.

“We [FSA] are advancing everyday. We will win,” Ahmad Afash, the commander of Ahrar Suriyah, said in an interview. His brigade is arguably the strongest brigade in the area. “We [will] fight until our last drop of blood.”