Recommended reading from The Guardian: “Syria’s oilfields create surreal battle lines amid chaos and tribal loyalties”.
This crazy-intense profile paints a picture of a nation descending into neo-feudalism. The pre-Socialism clan system is re-asserting itself in the midst of the chaos because people need local order and income. These clan administrators take control of local oil & gas production and then essentially pay electricity or gas tributes to both the regime and the Islamist rebels to keep them off their backs. One guy says he wants to sell his production to Turkey and buy Patriot missiles (are those just available???) so he can create an autonomous, self-guarding fiefdom.