The article states that it’s a condensed study, I don’t believe any one article can accurately describe the situation and whilst in this era of #fakenews it seems increasingly uncommon for rigor to be applied to the formation of ideas drawn from data I would like to believe that anyone reading such an article would use it as a launching point for investigations into the data that it’s contradicting rather than just accepting the points it’s making at face value.
The article describes Assad’s regime as autocratic, violent and directly responsible for civilian deaths in the pursuit of counter-insurgency, Taleb isn’t giving them a blank state. He also mentions that rebellion did not start life as a purely Salafist one but it has over time been increasingly commanded by a minority salafist movement.
Agreed about the issue of women’s rights but again, the article is a simplification, not least because I wouldn’t say Assad’s regime practices liberal western rights. In fact part of the point of the article is comparing it’s structure to that of the rebels.