Aleppo Artillery School massacre

The Aleppo Artillery School massacre was a sectarian massacre of Syrian Army cadets on 16 June 1979. It was carried out by a handful of members of the Fighting Vanguard led by Adnan Uqlah, without the permission of the Fighting Vanguard's leader, Hisham Jumbaz.[1][2][3] The Muslim Brotherhood in Syria was most likely responsible for the attack and tried to cover it up by condemning it, but the Syrian government decided to conduct a large-scale crackdown against it to prevent any reoccurrence.[4][5]

Aleppo Artillery School massacre
Part of Islamist uprising in Syria
Artillery School location is located in Aleppo
Artillery School location
Artillery School location
LocationAleppo, Syria
Date16 June 1979
TargetSyrian Army cadets
Attack type
WeaponsGuns, grenades

Massacre edit

The massacre occurred on 16 June 1979, in the Ramouseh district of the city of Aleppo, Syria, at the Aleppo Artillery School. An officer on duty, Ibrahim el-Youssef, and members of the Fighting Vanguard (at-Tali’a al-Muqatila) and led by ʿAdnan ʿUqla, massacred 83 Alawi cadets in the Aleppo Artillery School.[6][7][8] The duty officer in charge of the school called Alawite cadets to an urgent morning meeting in the mess hall of the school; when they arrived, he and his accomplices opened fire on the unarmed cadets with automatic weapons and grenades.[9] The incident marked the beginning of full scale urban warfare of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood against the ruling Alawites.[10]

Reaction edit

On 22 June, the Syrian interior minister, Adnan al-Dabbagh, accused the Muslim Brotherhood of the massacre. Although the principal targets were members of the Alawite sect, the Syrian Minister of Information, Ahmad Iskander Ahmad, stated that the murdered cadets also included Christians and Sunni Muslims.[citation needed] In a statement distributed on 24 June, the Muslim Brotherhood organization denied that it had any prior knowledge of the massacre nor involvement in it.[11] It also accused the Syrian government, then led by the Alawite President Hafez al-Assad, of trying to tarnish the image of the Muslim Brotherhood, speculatively because it was influential among the Syrian public. Overall, Syrian Islamists differed in their response to the massacre, however, with differing beliefs about the role of this kind of violence as a resistance tactic against the regime.[12]

The Syrian government responded by sentencing to death an estimated 15 prisoners belonging to the "Islamic resistance movement," all of whom were also accused of being Iraqi agents.[citation needed] Following the massacre, terrorist attacks became almost a daily occurrence, particularly in Aleppo and other northern cities. The government usually attributed these attacks to the Muslim Brotherhood, but as the armed resistance gained wider popular support and other, loosely defined, armed groups appeared, it became difficult to determine the extent of the Brotherhood's involvement.[13]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ Lefèvre 2015, p. 128.
  2. ^ Lefèvre 2013, p. 105.
  3. ^ Conduit 2019, p. 35.
  4. ^ Lefèvre 2013, p. 111.
  5. ^ Conduit 2019, pp. 112–113.
  6. ^ The Assad Era Thomas Collelo, ed. Syria: A Country Study. Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress, 1987.
  7. ^ Syria's Islamist Movement and the 2011-12 Uprising ORIGINS volume 5 issue 10 Archived June 22, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ From Hama to Hamas: Syria's Islamist Policies inFocus SPRING 2009 • VOLUME III: NUMBER 1, Jewish Policy Center
  9. ^ "The Massacre of the Military Artillery School at Aleppo – Special Report".
  10. ^ Wiedl, Kathrin Nina (2006). The Hama Massacre: Reasons, Supporters of the Rebellion, Consequences. GRIN Verlag. p. 8. ISBN 3-638-71034-3. Retrieved 17 March 2013.[self-published source]
  11. ^ "The Massacre of the Military Artillery School at Aleppo - Special Report | 2002 Reports". Retrieved 17 March 2013.
  12. ^ Dagher, Sam (2019). Assad or we burn the country : how one family's lust for power destroyed Syria (First ed.). New York. ISBN 978-0-316-55672-9. OCLC 1101180175.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  13. ^ Carré , 135-7.

Sources edit

  • Conduit, Dara (2019). The Muslim Brotherhood in Syria. Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-1-108-49977-4.
  • Lefèvre, Raphaël (2013). Ashes of Hama: The Muslim Brotherhood in Syria. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-933062-1.
  • Lefèvre, Raphaël (2015). "The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood's Alawi Conundrum". The Alawis of Syria: War, Faith and Politics in the Levant. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-045811-9.