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Syrian Arab Army (Syria)

Last modified: 2020-07-31 by ian macdonald
Keywords: syria | army |
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image by Zoltan Horvath, 30 November 2014

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Syrian Arab Army (SAA) (Arabic: الجيش العربي السوري‎ al-Jaysh al-’Arabī as-Sūrī), is the land force branch of the Syrian Armed Forces. It was established on August 1, 1945.  In 1919, the French formed the Troupes spéciales du Levant as part of the Army of the Levant in the French Mandate for Syria and the Greater Lebanon. The former with 8,000 men later grew into both the Syrian and Lebanese armies. This force was used primarily as auxiliaries in support of French troops, and senior officer posts were held by Frenchmen, although Syrians were allowed to hold commissions below the rank of Major.
As Syria gained independence in 1946, its leaders envisioned a Division-sized Army. The 1st Brigade was ready by the time of the Syrian war against Israel on May 15, 1948. It consisted of two infantry battalions and one armored battalion. The 2nd Brigade was organized during the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and also included two infantry battalions and one armored battalion.
Since 1948 it has played a major role in Syria's governance, mounting five military coups (two in 1949, including the March 1949 Syrian coup d'état and the August 1949 coup), 1954, 1963, 1966, and in 1970."
From 1976 to 2005 it was the major pillar of the Syrian occupation of Lebanon (1976-2005) after the 2005 mass protests evolved into the Cedar Revolution
Esteban Rivera, 29 November 2014

The Flag

Flag seen here.
Esteban Rivera, 29 November 2014

I noticed that Wikipedia images are incomplete. All flags have a motto over the branches' emblems. The motto is: "Watan, Sharaf, Ikhlas" (Homeland, Honour, Sincerity) in Kufi script.
Please see:
Zoltan Horvath, 30 November 2014