The rebels have been retreating from eastern Aleppo for more than a week, and government forces are likely to prevail
(ALEPPO, Syria) — Amina Hamawy burst into tears and then fainted when she returned to eastern Aleppo to find that looters had ransacked her home. “Where am I? What happened?” she asked after her husband and daughter revived her. “We have lost everything.”
They were among a few hundred residents who fled fighting in the Hanano neighborhood last month and were able to return after government forces drove out Syrian rebels, whose besieged and bombed out enclave in eastern Aleppo has begun to collapse.
After registering with authorities, Hamawy’s family was driven past blackened shells of buildings and mounds of rubble, devastation wrought by more than four years of near-daily airstrikes, including explosives-filled barrels dropped from helicopters.
Their single-story home was still intact, but the television, electrical cables and a large battery that supplied power for the home had been taken, either by retreating rebels, advancing forces or thieves exploiting the chaos.