For weeks in Qusair, Syrian rebels fought off soldiers loyal to Bashar al-Assad and yesterday, the rebels withdrew, handing the Syrian government one of its rare victories. (SANA/Associated Press)
Free Syrian Army, Abo Emad
For weeks, Syrian rebels in the strategic town of Qusair fought off soldiers loyal to Bashar al-Assad. The sounds you hear are recordings made by opposition activists of what they claim is that fighting. But yesterday, the rebels withdrew, handing the Syrian government one of its rare victories.
And the credit is going to Hezbollah. The Lebanese Shia militia group sent hundreds of well-trained -- and apparently highly effective -- fighters to aid the Assad troops. For the rebels, the loss of Qusair is significant and will likely make it more difficult to fight elsewhere.
According to some reports, Hezbollah plans to expand its fighting to other communities further inside Syria.
Our first guest is a spokesperson for the opposition Free Syrian Army. The Canadian office of the Syrian National Coalition put us in touch with him, and we agreed to use his pseudonym, Abo Emad, for his safety. He joined us from the countryside just outside Qusair.
Middle East Correspondent for The Guardian, Martin Chulov
Martin Chulov covers the conflict in Syria. He thinks the introduction of Hezbollah and the rebel defeat in Qusair could be a defining moment. Martin Chulov is the Middle East Correspondent for The Guardian newspaper. He was in Beirut, Lebanon.
President of Matn University, Judith Harik
The international diplomatic efforts to intervene in the conflict are stalled. And many analysts watch warily because the crisis has the potential to spill out of Syria and into the surrounding region.
Judith Harik has been tracking the development of Hezbollah for three decades. She is the author of Hezbollah: The Changing Face of Terrorism. Judith Harik is the President of Matn University in Lebanon and was in Beirut this morning.
This segment was produced by The Current's Gord Westmacott, Catherine Kalbfleisch and Sujata Berry.
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