FGM 2ND IN COMMAND
- Nov 28, 2011
- Perth, Australia
Name: Abdul Salem Abbas
Date of Birth: 13th June 1975
Home City: Al Kiswah
Position: District Official
Abdul Salem Abbas was born in the city of Al Kiswah in the Rif Dimashq Governorate. The second son of a senior public servant to the Hafez al-Assad government in the 1970’s. Benefiting from his position in the administration his family was well to do compared to most. His elder brother was awarded a commission in the Syrian army and seen as the natural heir to the family. This allowed Abdul to focus on his passion of history and theology, attending the University of Damascus.
As the younger brother finished his studies and followed his father into the civil service, tragedy struck with his elder brother killed in an ambush during a tour deployed in occupied Lebanon. The focus of the family soon shifted to Abdul who rose through the ranks and replaced his father upon his retirement before being promoted as a district official in his home of Rif Dimashq in 2003.
The young official moved quickly in cementing his position, instigating a range of public work projects centered around road infrastructure and water distribution, the latter seen as principal for the ongoing farming activity in the region. He quickly became popular with the local populous and gave many fiery speeches at local events in support of the regime, at the same time promoting his place within it.
As the threat of war with the west loomed he desperately tried to have additional military forces assigned to his region but was rebuffed by the military who were already stretched covering a likely invasion from three directions. Realizing any open battle with NATO forces was doomed to failure he began making plans by stockpiling as many small arms and other weapons he could lay his hands on and storing them across the cities of the region, out of site of both NATO and his own Government.
Within a week of the invasion, the district chief of the Rif Dimashq Governorate fled, (rumored to the Lebanese coast) leaving Abdul Salem Abbas the de facto leader of the district. As NATO swiftly swept across the deserts towards Damascus his fiery speeches increased and local militias were formed ready to resist the invader at every turn when they arrived. The agricultural lands and urban areas that dotted his district would provide plenty of locations for ambush and fighting a protracted campaign unlike the open ground further east.
As remnant army forces fled back to Damascus, many fled to the south of the capital to avoid an engagement. Abdul spent days racing from village to town to bring these scattered forces under his command, trying to form some semblance of a defensive line. For every soldier that turned around to face the enemy, another continued to flee. Still the forces under his command continues to grow and a cadre of military officers are now in place to provide him with advice on how to conduct the campaign. However, how long the support for a public official with no history of military service is certainly a question that will need to be answered.
Promotional pictures holding an AKM are one thing, leading this ad-hoc force to victory is another.