MAP: Syrian Army pincer move develops amid possible Hama salient collapse

Recent Syrian Army advances in the northern countryside of Hama and southern countryside of Idlib province seem to be developing into a clear-cut pincer movement that could lead to the rapid collapse of a long-standing militant salient in the region.

Specifically, the capture of Al-Hobait city on the western flank of the Hama salient and the seizure of Sukayk on its eastern flank by government forces when viewed from a control map very much betrays an obvious strategy the Syrian Army may very well be trying to implement.

The capture of Al-Hobait has completely exposed the western approach to Khan Sheykhun as there are currently very few prepared jihadist defenses in between the two cities.

At the same time, the Syrian Army is locked into a battle to seize of the strategic hilltop of Tal Ter’i, the capture of which would give government forces fire-control over both Khan Sheykhun to the north and most of the remaining insurgent-held northern Hama region to the southwest.

Should such an encirclement operation be seen through to completion, militant groups may be forced to abandon key strongholds in northern Hama province including Kafr Zita, Al-Latamaneh and Murak or risk being trapped and inevitably defeated in a battle that would see them lose a high number of fighters.

For a HD version of the map above, click here.