Syria's Turncoat General Could Embolden Assad's Enemies
The drip of defections by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime over the past few weeks is beginning to look like a steady stream.
France confirmed today that Brig. Gen. Manaf Tlass, the leader of an elite army unit and personal friend of Assad's, had fled Syria with his family. Tlass is the highest level defector so far in Syria's increasingly violent uprising and his departure from Assad's inner-circle could mark a turning point in the conflict.
Andrew Tabler is an analyst at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy and he's spent most of the last decade in Syria as a journalist, where he met both Bashar and Asma Assad. He visits the region regularly and is the author of "In the Lion's Den," about Syria and the Assad regime's leadership.
He came to the NewsHour studios this afternoon to tell us who exactly Brig. Gen. Tlass is and what his defection means to Assad and the war engulfing Syria.