It’s a workshop-grade artillery round, for a workshop-made artillery piece being manufactured by the Free Syrian Army. Crafted by machinists, in part from standard pipe and fittings imported from China and in part with the help of a simple foundry for casting the fuze body in the nose, all aided by the basic chemistry skills required to brew its explosive fill, it is a weapon that is both a testament to the anti-government forces’ resourcefulness and their shortage of conventional arms. It speaks as well to revolution by other means, and how a guerilla force organizes for a long war, taking contributions from all quarters.
Soon on the NYT, a review and tour of the many means by which Syria’s growing uprising has armed itself to fight a better-armed foe. With pix by Bryan Denton.