The bad guys, to the extent any of them had ideals to begin with, are now nihilists. And they've repeatedly demonstrated they do not adhere to any military code of honor. Such people will try in every way to create as many civilian casualties as they can -- massacres, using human shields, suicide bombings, chemical attacks, you name it.
I think some of them hope that if they can make it horrible enough, this will pressure the 'International Community' to halt or hobble the Syrian military's march on Idlib. At the least they'll try to make the Syrian and Russian governments look as bad as possible; they believe, with history as their guide, that they can get plenty of help in this from the Western mainstream media and the Gulf Arab-controlled United Nations.
Governments and media must confront the fact that as long as they've uncritical consumers of news about atrocities in Syria, the bad guys will continue to crank it out. So press editors and TV news producers must scare up some ethics. They can put up an united front to show the bad guys that they're wasting their time by creating massacre porn. Western governments involved with the Syrian War can also do their part in tamping down atrocities by making it clear they won't be stampeded.
Of course there are civilian casualties from military operations. However, I would not want to see the same media and government spokespersons who were studiously quiet about the large number of civilian deaths from U.S. coalition bombings in Raqqa and Mosul suddenly rise up in outrage about civilian deaths from Syrian/Russian bombings in Idlib City.
But here we go: "UN warns of BLOODBATH as Syrian regime troops prepare to storm FINAL rebel stronghold" -- headline today from the (U.K.) Express.
Foreign opponents of Syria's government also need to acknowledge that as long as governments such as Saudi Arabia's exist there can be no liberal democracy in Syria or anywhere in the Middle East. Israel is not an exception. Behind the mask of liberal democratic politics Israel is a police state -- as if they had a choice.