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“I just want to understand, why are they shelling on us?”

A young boy in Aleppo, Syria, describes the destruction of his neighborhood and the deaths of his relatives (“we found my grandma in four pieces”) from a scud missile attack by the forces of President Assad.

Note how he struggles not to cry. (If it was propaganda he probably would have been encouraged to cry.)

As The Washington Post reports:

Scud missiles are so inaccurate that it is hard to imagine that their use in residential areas is intended to do anything other than kill civilians, said Joe Holliday of the Institute for the Study of War, who estimates their margin of error as up to a mile.

Their use may also point to the regime’s limited options in its efforts to repress what has become an increasingly effective rebel force, which has acquired the capabilities first to blunt ground offensives and, more recently, to shoot down planes. Extremist rebel groups also have used suicide bombings to devastating effect in government-
controlled Damascus and elsewhere.

In a war that has moved rapidly from bullets to shells to helicopter gunships and warplanes, “Scuds are the next escalation,” Holliday said. “There’s nothing bigger that the regime hasn’t used” — barring chemical weapons, which many fear could be the next step.

Residents of the stricken neighborhoods of Syria’s commercial capital offer other theories: that the missiles are a punishment for recent rebel advances on the international airport south of the city or that they are perhaps intended to turn people against the Free Syrian Army by rendering the areas it controls unlivable.