Idlib Province isn’t exactly a household name in the United States.
Perhaps it should be.
It’s in Syria, a country we’ve all heard plenty about in recent years. It’s been torn to shreds by sectarian violence of the worst kind. It’s waging a civil war. Tuesday night, Frontline returns to Syria to reveal what’s happening there “behind the lines.” The program airs at 9 p.m. on KACV-TV.
“Syria Behind the Lines” goes to Idlib Province to examine the vicious war through the eyes of rebels seeking to overthrow the government of Bashar al-Assad, government soldiers defending the regime and — most interestingly, in my view — civilians who are caught in the middle of the ferocious fighting.
It’s nearly impossible at this stage of the conflict to determine precisely how many people have died. It numbers in the tens of thousands. You hear reports of rebels taking control of key ports, provinces, cities and towns. Then you hear that the government has reasserted control. Will the Assad government fall? Will it survive? If it falls, who takes over? Would a new government be friendlier to the west and, more critically to the Middle East, to Israel?
The battle rages. Frontline, as it always does, looks dispassionately at all the factors, tells all the stories, and leaves viewers with much to ponder.
The fight cannot go on forever, although for those caught in the middle of the raging fury, “forever” seems as though it’s already come and gone.