Inside Syria's largest city of Aleppo as attacks continue

ALEPPO -- In Syria, there is little hope that a broken cease-fire will be revived.

Since late last week, Russian and Syrian warplanes and troops have been hammering Syria’s largest city, Aleppo.

At the start of the week, CBS News watched a student party from a rooftop. When the war reignited, shells fell on rebel-held Aleppo, just after the Syrian army declared the cease-fire was over.

Soon, the warplanes were up too, bombing.

The number of dead and wounded --- which had fallen to almost zero  -- rocketed up.

The frontline of this civil war runs right through the center of Aleppo. 

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Front line of the Syrian civil war runs right through the center of Aleppo.   

CBS News

Thirteen-year-old Aya lives on the very edge of the government side. 

She showed CBS News a big curtain hung up in the middle of the street to protect against snipers.

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Aya shows CBS News correspondent Elizabeth Palmer a sheet put up to protect against snipers. 

CBS News

The snipers -- just a few hundred years away -- are opposition fighters who over the past four years have aimed their weapons at Syrian army positions deep in the neighborhood

 Aya said she has lost many friends to the war.

“Some were killed by mortars, or snipers...some just left the country,” she said.

Many of those who didn’t make a run for it are living in the ruins of war -- in desperate need.

The cease-fire was supposed to let humanitarian aid reach them, but the main delivery route into Aleppo has been a battle ground for months.

To let the aid flow, all sides, including the Syrian army were supposed to pull back. And it never did, because the negotiations to secure the road failed. 

In a war this savage it’s hard to sort fact from fiction.

It got even harder this week, when a U.S. airstrike hit Syrian soldiers by mistake said the Pentagon.

A few days later, a Red Crescent aid convoy was attacked.

The U.S. said early indications showed the Russians were responsible, something Moscow furiously denied.

But public opinion is this country is shaped by Syrian state media, and the villain on its airwaves is always the United States.

But Syrians also believe that America can make a difference in the outcome of this war, and that the U.S. has a responsibility to use its power and diplomatic muscle to help bring peace.

  • Elizabeth Palmer

    Elizabeth Palmer has been a CBS News correspondent since August 2000. She has been based in London since late 2003, after having been based in Moscow (2000-03). Palmer reports primarily for the "CBS Evening News."