Meanwhile, elsewhere in the Middle East …..
While the world frets about Israel’s relatively limited campaign to defend the citizens of its southern towns and cities against the years-long onslaught of missiles fired from the Gaza Strip, the brutal civil war next door in Syria, which has already reportedly taken the lives of 38,000 civilians, continues unabated:
AMMAN/BEIRUT: Syrian warplanes bombed a Damascus suburb on Wednesday in a push to dislodge rebels from a stronghold that threatens President Bashar al-Assad’s hold on the capital, opposition activists said.
Heavy fighting also raged in other outskirts of the city in the most serious challenge to Assad’s seat of power in months.
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On Wednesday, MiG fighter jets launched a second day of raids on the opposition-held suburb of Daraya, set in farmland near the main southern highway, where rebels have been battling elite Republican Guard units.
Live footage broadcast by the opposition on the Internet showed heavy smoke rising from a built-up area in Daraya and carried the sound of automatic gun fire.
The pro-government al-Ekhbariya television said the army had begun a campaign to “cleanse” Daraya of what it described as terrorists, and showed troops on the edge of the town. Activists reported 23 people killed in two days.
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An estimated 38,000 people have been killed in Syria since an Arab Spring-inspired uprising against Assad began in March last year.