Hundreds of thousands of Syrian civilians have fled rebel-held parts of the city of Aleppo in recent weeks under heavy aerial bombardment by the Syrian government, emptying whole neighborhoods and creating what aid workers say is one of the largest refugee flows of the entire civil war.
Driving much of the exodus is the government’s heavy use of so-called barrel bombs, large containers filled with explosives and metal shards that explode on impact, maiming and killing people within a large radius, collapsing buildings and often leaving bodies buried in the rubble.
Mr. Assad is forging ahead with his own: pounding civilians out of rebel-held districts or using military means to make life miserable for those left inside.
Assad seeks to take back important territory but not population, his objective is not to allow residents back. It is a kind of cleansing going on.
Bombings in Syria Force Wave of Civilians to Flee