Pencilneck's brother now answers to 'Stumpy'
Pencilneck Bashar Assad's feared brother Stumpy Maher lost a leg in a bomb attack on the Syrian leader's security cabinet a month ago, sources said on Thursday, in a severe blow to one of the main military commanders fighting an 17-month-old insurgency.
The attack on a meeting of Assad's security chiefs in Damascus on July 18 killed four members of the president's inner circle, including his brother-in-law, and emboldened the rebels to take their fight to the capital for the first time.
Maher has not been seen in public since the bombing, while Assad himself has restricted appearances to recorded clips broadcast on television, leading to speculation about the effectiveness of the leadership as the rebellion grows.
Maher, a close associate of the president,
|Doesn't exactly give the hard boyz confidence when Glorious Maximum Leader is cowering in the palace screaming "Kill themmmmmm! Kill them allllll!"|
has acquired a fearsome reputation as the commander of the Syrian army's Republican Guard and 4th Division, elite formations largely composed of troops from the Assads' minority Alawite sect, whose loyalty can be relied on in the fight against the rebels.
|He is a brother after all...|
"We heard that he (Maher Assad) lost one of his legs during the explosion, but don't know any more," a Western diplomat told Reuters.
A Gulf source confirmed the report: "He lost one of his legs. The news is true."
Posted by: Steve White 2012-08-17