Syrian Army

land force branch of the Syrian Armed Forces

The Syrian Army, officially the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) (Arabic: الجيش العربي السوري‎, romanized: al-Jayš al-ʿArabī as-Sūrī), is the land force branch of the Syrian Armed Forces. It started from local military forces created by France after World War I. These forces became one force in 1945, the year before Syria became independent.

Syrian Arab Army
الجيش العربي السوري
Flag of the Syrian Arab Army.svg
Syrian Arab Army Flag
Active1 August 1945[1]
1971 (current form)
Country Syria
RoleLand warfare
Sizeestimated 100,000 (2019)[2]
Military age: 18
18 years of age for forced and voluntary military service; people who are forced to serve in the military have to serve for 18 months; women are not forced but may volunteer to serve; re-enlistment is for 5 years, with retirement after 15 years or age 40 (enlisted) or 20 years or age 45 [3][4]

Part ofSyrian Armed Forces
Motto(s)"حماة الديار" (Guardians of the Homeland)
ColorsGreen, Red, White
AnniversariesAugust 1st
Engagements1948 Arab–Israeli War

War of Attrition
Black September
Yom Kippur War/October War
Lebanese Civil War
1982 Lebanon War
Islamist uprising in Syria
Mountain War (Lebanon)
Operation Desert Storm

Syrian Civil War
President of SyriaFM Bashar al-Assad
Minister of DefenseGen. Ali Abdullah Ayyoub

Since 1946, it has played a major role in Syria's politics, doing six military coups: two in 1949, including the March 1949 Syrian coup d'état and the August 1949 coup by Colonel Sami al-Hinnawi, and one each in 1954, 1963, 1966, and 1970. It has fought four wars with Israel (1948, the Six-Day War in 1967, the October War of 1973, and 1982 in Lebanon) and one with Jordan (Black September in Jordan, 1970). An armored division was also sent to Saudi Arabia in 1990–91 during the Persian Gulf War, but it did not do much. From 1976 to 2005 it was the major pillar of the Syrian occupation of Lebanon. Within Syria, it played a major part in stopping the 1979–82 Islamist uprising in Syria, and since early 2011 has been fighting the Syrian Civil War, the most violent and longest war the Syrian Army has taken part in since it was created in the 1940s.


  1. Syria News 1 August 2013, President Bashar Al-Assad visits soldiers to mark Army Day and pledge victory. 3 August 2013. Archived from the original on 2016-03-24. Retrieved 2015-10-12 – via YouTube.
  2. IISS 2019, p. 368.
  3. "The World Factbook". Archived from the original on 2014-07-02. Retrieved 2013-06-15.
  4. "CIA World Factbook". CIA. Archived from the original on 2016-03-22. Retrieved 2013-06-14.