Lindsey Hilsum is International Editor of Britain’s Channel 4 News and the author of Sandstorm: Libya in the Time of Revolution. She is currently writing a biography of Marie Colvin, a war correspondent killed in Syria. (November 2017)
The Impossible Revolution: Making Sense of the Syrian Tragedy
by Yassin al-Haj Saleh, with a foreword by Robin Yassin-Kassab
The Caliphate at War: Operational Realities and Innovations of the Islamic State
by Ahmed S. Hashim
The battle against ISIS in Syria is nearly over—attacked by the regime and its allies on one hand and the US-backed coalition on the other, its leadership is on the run, and the territory it controls diminishes by the day. Elsewhere in Syria, a frequently violated, Russian-orchestrated “cessation of hostilities” is in place. The revolution failed, and the wars it spawned are either changing form or limping to a bitter, ragged, whimpering end. The lines on the map are still shifting, but although Syria may never be unified in the way it was before 2011, the Assad government, with Russian and Iranian help, is reconsolidating power in the main urban centers. New conflicts are brewing.