Islamist Groups Declare Opposition to National Coalition and US Strategy [updated]

Islamist Groups Declare Opposition to National Coalition and US Strategy
By Aron Lund for Syria Comment
Sept. 24, 2013

[Updates & additional commentary added to the end of the post]

Abdelaziz Salame, the highest political leader of the Tawhid Brigade in Aleppo, has issued a statement online where he claims to speak for 13 different rebel factions. You can see the video or read it in Arabic here. The statement is titled “communiqué number one” – making it slightly ominous right off the bat – and what it purports to do is to gut Western strategy on Syria and put an end to the exiled opposition.

The statements has four points, some of them a little rambling. My summary:

  • All military and civilian forces should unify their ranks in an “Islamic framwork” which is based on “the rule of sharia and making it the sole source of legislation”.
  • The undersigned feel that they can only be represented by those who lived and sacrificed for the revolution.
  • Therefore, they say, they are not represented by the exile groups. They go on to specify that this applies to the National Coalition and the planned exile government of Ahmed Touma, stressing that these groups “do not represent them” and they “do not recognize them”.
  • In closing, the undersigned call on everyone to unite and avoid conflict, and so on, and so on.

The following groups are listed as signatories to the statement.

  1. Jabhat al-Nosra
  2. Islamic Ahrar al-Sham Movement
  3. Tawhid Brigade
  4. Islam Brigade
  5. Suqour al-Sham Brigades
  6. Islamic Dawn Movement
  7. Islamic Light Movement
  8. Noureddin al-Zengi Battalions
  9. Haqq Brigade – Homs [See update below]
  10. Furqan Brigade – Quneitra [See update below]
  11. Fa-staqim Kama Ummirat Gathering – Aleppo
  12. 19th Division
  13. Ansar Brigade

Who are these people?

The alleged signatories make up a major part of the northern rebel force, plus big chunks also of the Homs and Damascus rebel scene, as well as a bit of it elsewhere. Some of them are among the biggest armed groups in the country, and I’m thinking now mostly of numbers one through five. All together, they control at least a few tens of thousand fighters, and if you trust their own estimates (don’t) it must be way above 50,000 fighters.

Most of the major insurgent alliances are included. Liwa al-Tawhid, Liwa al-Islam and Suqour al-Sham are in both the Western- and Gulf-backed Supreme Military Council (SMC a.k.a. FSA) and the SILF, sort-of-moderate Islamists. Ahrar al-Sham and Haqq are in the SIF, very hardline Islamists. Jabhat al-Nosra, of course, is an al-Qaida faction. Noureddin al-Zengi are in the Asala wa-Tanmiya alliance (which is led by quietist salafis, more or less) as well as in the SMC. And so on. More groups may join, but already at this stage, it looks – on paper, at least – like the most powerful insurgent alliance in Syria.

What does this mean?

Is this a big deal? Yes, if the statement proves to accurately represent the groups mentioned and they do not immediately fall apart again, it is a very big deal. It represents the rebellion of a large part of the “mainstream FSA” against its purported political leadership, and openly aligns these factions with more hardline Islamist forces.

That means that all of these groups now formally state that they do not recognize the opposition leadership that has been molded and promoted by the USA, Turkey, France, Great Britain, other EU countries, Qatar, and – especially, as of late – Saudi Arabia.

That they also formally commit themselves to sharia as the “sole source of legislation” is not as a big a deal as it may seem. Most of these factions already were on record as saying that, and for most of the others, it’s more like a slight tweak of language. Bottom line, they were all Islamist anyway. And, of course, they can still mean different things when they talk about sharia.

Why now? According to a Tawhid Brigade spokesperson, it is because of the “conspiracies and compromises that are being forced on the Syrian people by way of the [National] Coalition”. So there.

Mohammed Alloush of the Islam Brigade (led by his relative, Mohammed Zahran Alloush), who is also a leading figure in the SILF alliance, was up late tweeting tonight. He had a laundry list of complaints against the National Coalition, including the fact that its members are all, he says, “appointed”, i.e. by foreign powers. He also opposed its planned negotiations with the regime. This may have been in reference to a (widely misinterpreted) recent statement by the Coalition president Ahmed Jerba. Alloush also referred to the recent deal between the National Coalition and the Kurdish National Council, and was upset that this will (he thinks) splinter Syria and change its name from the Syrian Arab Republic to the Syrian Republic.

Is this a one-off thing?

The fellow from the Tawhid Brigade informed me that more statements are in the making. According to him, this is not just an ad hoc formation set up to make a single point about the National Coalition. He hinted that it’s the beginning of a more structured group, but when I asked, he said it has no name yet. On the other hand, Abdulqader Saleh – Tawhid’s powerful military chief – referred to it on Twitter as al-Tahaluf al-Islami or the Islamic Alliance, but that may have been just descriptive, rather than a formal name.

Mohammed Alloush also wrote on Twitter, somewhat ambiguously, that the member groups have their own offices and political bureaus, and there’s a political program different from the National Coalition.  He, too, hinted that there’s more coming: “wait for the announcement of the new army”.

Who’s missing?

These are of course not all the rebels; far from it. Dozens or hundreds of small and local groups are missing from this alliance, just like they’ve been missing from every other alliance before it. Some really big groups are also not in there, like the Farouq Battalions or the Ahfad al-Rasoul Brigades, both of them quite closely aligned with the SMC and the National Coalition.

Most notably, the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham – Syria’s most querulous al-Qaida faction – is absent from the list. Given the recent surge in tension between the Islamic State and other factions, that seems significant. Does it mean the new coalition is in fact aimed at isolating the Islamic State, while also upping its own Islamist credentials? Striking a kind of third way between the Western-backed SMC and its al-Qaida rival? Maybe. The question then remains, what should we make of Jabhat al-Nosra being included, which is also an al-Qaida group.

In either case, the Northern Storm Brigade – which was routed by the Islamic State in its home town of Aazaz just recently – has quickly expressed support for the new coalition. In a statement posted online, they fell over themselves to explain how they’ve always been all about implementing sharia law. This is of course, how shall I put it, not true. The Northern Storm Brigade leaders are, or so the story goes, a bunch of ex-smugglers from Aazaz, with no particularly clear ideological agenda. They’ve allied with the West to the point of hosting John McCain for a photo op – and as we know, he waltzed out of that meeting firmly convinced that the rebels are all proponents of secular democracy.

No: the reason that the Northern Storm Brigade has suddenly gone all Islamist is that they desperately seek protection from Tawhid, after being beaten up by the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Perhaps they also figure that this alliance might be the only thing big and mean enough to actually crush the Islamic State. Size, money and momentum are the things to look for in Syrian insurgent politics – ideology comes fourth, if even that. That’s also why this statement seems so important.

On the other hand, the statement is in no way hostile to the ISIS. It might in fact suit them pretty well, since it weakens the hand of the Western-backed camp and adds weight to Islamist demands. When I asked a representative of Tawhid, he said the reason they’re not on the list of signatories is just because they’re not members. If they want to, and share the principles, they could join. The members already present will decide.

Is it just a local thing?

There’s also not that much of a presence from the Syrian south. The Furqan Brigade is an exception – founded in Kanaker, and now stretching from the western Ghouta to Quneitra. Then you have the Islam Brigade in Damascus, the Homsi Haqq Brigade, and so on. Generally speaking, however, this list of names has a heavy northern flavor to it, specifically Aleppine.

On the scanned original statement, there’s even an addition of “Aleppo” next to the name of “Abdullah al-Shami”, who signed for Jabhat al-Nosra. The Tawhid spokesperson, again, says that this doesn’t mean they only signed on for the Aleppo branch. He insists that the alliance is intended for all of Syria. I guess we’ll find out.

Are you sure about this?

No, I’m not sure about this. There’s always good reason to be cautious about Syria’s notoriously unstable opposition politics. Things like these will shift quicker than you can say يسقط بشار. The wind could easily turn again, signatory groups could drop out, foreign funders could put the squeeze on groups that have not grasped the magnitude of what they just said.

That sort of thing already happened once, in Aleppo in November 2012, when Tawhid, Nusra, Ahrar al-Sham and many other groups signed a statement denouncing the then-newly formed National Coalition. I wrote about it for Carnegie at the time. The difference between then and now is that the November 2012 statement seems to have been very poorly anchored, and basically sprung on everyone by Jabhat al-Nosra who (I heard) gathered local commanders and had them sign a statement without consulting their top leadership properly. So it fell apart very quickly.

This time – we’ll see.

— Aron Lund

UPDATE, Sep. 25, 2013:

Lots of media have now reported on the joint statement based mainly on this blog post. Unfortunately, some have shed all the “what if” and caution. Only a few seem to have bothered to contact any of the Syrians who are actually involved to hear their take on the story, despite the fact that several of these groups go to great lengths to communicate directly with reporters, through websites and Facebook pages and spokespersons available by phone, Facebook, Twitter, and Skype, in Arabic, English and sometimes even French.

Instead, many commenters ran with the idea of a radical group called the “Islamic Coalition” (or “Alliance”) that has been formed to oppose the West. I don’t think this is true, at least not yet.

While this may be more than just a statement, it is not – as far as we know – an organized structure at all. It is a “bloc” or an “alliance” mainly in the sense that several groups now share a position and may continue to collaborate politically. It could evolve into something more substantial in the future, but there’s nothing to indicate that an organization has been formed at this moment. There is no common leadership, no spokesperson, no known structure, no website, no logotype, no political program. There’s just a statement – a very important one, I think, but that in itself doesn’t make it an organization.

In fact, I contacted the Tawhid Brigade spokesperson I talked to earlier, who had spoken of this as a gathering (tajammou) or bloc (takattul) that might have more lasting significance. He says there is so far nothing in the way of a common organization. He explicitly denied that it is anything like the SILF or SIF insurgent alliances. There will be more statements, but at this stage he seems to say it’s really only a position paper by the 11 or 13 (see below) factions involved. He didn’t exclude that their cooperation could evolve further, into a more structured type of alliance, but said this hadn’t happened yet, and if so, it might involve different participants.

When I pointed out that Abdulqader Saleh’s rather offhand comment on Twitter using the phrase “Islamic Alliance” or “Islamic Coalition” (al-tahaluf al-islami) could be interpreted as the name of a new group, and that this version is now gaining currency in the media, he responded “it could become that, but so far there’s nothing”.

So, my point is, there’s really no need to jump to conclusions here. I get the sense that these groups may be planning to call for a new revolutionary leadership at some point, but they haven’t formed one themselves. At the end of the day, only the people involved can explain what they mean, and I hope they make an effort to do so. If there are more statements coming, maybe these will clear up the confusion.

Also, people have e-mailed me to say that two of the groups included on the list of signatories above are not mentioned in either the video statement by Abdulaziz Salame or the scanned copy of the declaration. The groups in question are the Haqq Brigade of Homs and the Furqan Brigades of Quneitra.

That’s true. I copied and translated my list from a text version on the Tawhid Brigade website. That text has since been altered to fall in line with the signed copy and the video statement, removing the names of both groups. According to the Tawhid Brigade spokesman, both Furqan and Haqq were part of the drafting process and are verbally in agreement with the statement, but he says they were not present for the signing ceremony. It’s perhaps best to let these groups clarify their position themselves. In either case, leaving them out would certainly give the group of signatories an even stronger northern and Aleppine flavor.

— Aron Lund

A friend of Syria Comment chimes in with her/his take on the statement and its ramifications:

So how often are they planning on getting together with AlQaeda to discuss common concerns?

They specifically indicated that this is statement 1, a very clear indication of it being the first of many to come.

Regardless of what the structure behind this statement is, all i see is a signature by AlQaeda in Syria above the signatures of the major rebel factions, on a document that list common concerns and goals that go beyond fighting the regime and calls for Islamic rule. How will western governments justify supporting these groups to their people with the existence of such statement?

If you take out Liwaa al tawhid, Liwaa al islam, Suqor al sham and Ahrar al sham, what exactly is left of the revolution? Liwaa al Tawhid paved the way for the fall of Aleppo and is the main force there, Liwaa al islam is the main force in Damascus…These groups are not “part of” the Syrian revolution, they are the Syrian revolution.

I still haven’t seen anything about the regional powers take on this, if the Saudis/Turk don’t approve of it, i wouldn’t be surprised if they’re now pulling their weight to force a reversal by the signees. Which would explain attempts to play down the implications.

The National Coalition responds:

Anas al-Abdeh, a member of the National Coalition’s political office, and himself an Islamist, says in statement on the NC website that the timing of the statement was unfortunate, since the NC is currently sending a delegation to the UN to “win friends”. He also argues that the statement “does not represent the most important battalions of the Free Syrian Army on the ground, since there are many big battalions that have not signed this statement”.

He says everyone must understand that the future Syrian state must be decided by the people through elections “and no one has the right to force his tutelage upon the Syrian people or declare the type of rule or the law that it will be ruled by. Of course, the people who seek this may convince the Syrian people after the liberation from the regime, but not now.”

He complained that this will increase the splintering of the opposition, and said the NC must maintain a dialogue with the factions involved – except Jabhat al-Nosra – to understand what they are worried about and take that into concern. He adds that it was a mistake to let Jabhat al-Nosra sign the statement, since it is an al-Qaeda faction and has “an agenda which is not Syrian, and it is opposed to the national project”. Abdeh concluded by saying the government of Ahmed Touma must now get to work inside Syria.

Comments (329)

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301. zoo said:

As the Western attempted alliance with the moderate Sunnis failed due to their aggressive, sectarian and extremist position in particular toward Syria, the USA is now turning to Iran for a “moderate” Islam .

“The deal with Iran is no a minor matter, and is going to be a major turning point in Middle Eastern politics.”

The importance of the deal with Iran

At the very beginning of a long path, we need to understand why everything has suddenly turned upside down – whether or not in a positive way – so that Syria and Iran stopped being defined as “forces of evil” and turned into political actors.

First of all, it was the unsustainability of the present situation in Syria that forced all parties of the conflict to seek a way out. In the beginning, the Western powers failed to recognize the complexity of the Syrian situation, and that Syria was not only an important ally of Iran but also an indispensable partner. They also failed to recognize that it was a sort of “Ukraine of the Middle East” for Russia and that it would not compromise its stance.

Nevertheless, all of these reasons alone could not push the U.S. and Western powers in general to search for a compromise, unless a Western alliance with the “moderate” Islamic forces and governments in the region failed dramatically.

It is not only that the West invested too much hope in moderate Islamic forces as the new forces of democratization in Muslim world, but that these forces could not deliver good governance in any sense, neither in Egypt nor even in Tunisia.

There is no doubt that this played a role, but the major disappointment was the discovery of the fact that moderates might not be as “moderate” as assumed. In fact, the disenchantment started with the violent protests condemning a movie (insulting the Prophet Muhammad), produced by an obscure American producer. The events culminated in the attack on the U.S. Embassy compound in Benghazi and the killing of the U.S. ambassador in Libya, on Sept. 11, 2012, which created a shock and had an instant impact on U.S. politics. It was the presidential election period in the U.S. and it put at risk Obama’s prospects for a second term.

Under those circumstances, Obama needed to revise his relations with “moderates,” as even if it was radicals in Libya who killed the U.S. ambassador, so-called moderate forces were in power in all those countries where protesters turned violent and targeted the U.S. Moreover, it was the Egyptian government that could not take a firm stance against the violent protests, so much so that Obama came to state that he could “not define Egypt as an ally, but also not as an enemy.”

The case of Turkey, as a failed model for democracy in Muslim countries, has also had its impact on the disenchantment with moderate Islamists. It was not only that the Turkey model failed to achieve genuine democracy, but also that Turkey’s policy in Syria turned out to be at odds with its Western allies.

First, rumors and then some evidence started to be circulated that Turkey was somehow supporting (indirectly, if not directly) the radical Islamist opposition. Besides, the moderates of Turkey turned out to be rather anti-Western and often accused the Western world of being “conspirators” in Muslim world.

In sum, the moderate “Sunni allies” started to seem no less risky to engage with than the “Shia enemies” of the West. At that point, Iran came to be a more reasonable partner than ever, after the moderate Hassan Rouhani came to office and started to send warm messages to West.
Besides, Iran has a stable political governance structure to deal with, unlike shaky allies. The situation in Syria is similar, where the opposition turned not only to be much weaker than expected, but also proved to be untrustworthy in all respects, even dangerous. Finally, it has turned out to be worth trying to talk to a predictable enemy/enemies rather than committing too much to unpredictable allies.

The deal with Iran is no a minor matter, and is going to be a major turning point in Middle Eastern politics.

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September 29th, 2013, 5:27 pm


302. Alan said:

7 Israelis in Syria OPCW Chemical Weapons Team?

The French Anti-Zionist party “Parti Antisioniste” revealed on its website [yet to be confirmed, GR Ed] that the team designated to dismantle the chemical weapons arsenal in Syria includes 7 “Israeli” members.

Dear Mr Putin! how many really Israelis have in Russian military industrial complex ? 😉

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September 29th, 2013, 6:18 pm


303. ghufran said:

Sabbagh of the MB is still saying that he will only go to Geneva to negotiate a total transfer of authority to the ” opposition”, either this guy is stupid or he is just getting paid to keep the war going.

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September 29th, 2013, 6:33 pm


305. Syrian said:

From today’s Alquds Al Arabi editorial :
What Arabs today see in Iran,that its aggressive foreign policy have made a bloody fault line that cut the ME, starting from Tehran passing Baghdad,Damascus and ending in Beirut ,reopening old historical and geographical wounds that started a huge confutation fed mainly by poor Shia and Sunni Arabs.
Using Arabs as cards in its negotiation with the west not caring for the massacres, death and destruction among Arabs, who are fighting each other on sectarian and religious ground. Instead of fighting thier corrupt governments.This is the tarp that those corrupt governments have set up its citizens into,to protect themselves and serve Iran’s grand plans of its Persain empire.
ما يراه العرب ان ايران بسياستها الهجومية صنعت خط زلازل دمويّا يشقّ المنطقة من طهران مروراً ببغداد ودمشق وصولاً الى بيروت فاتحة بتدخلاتها جروح التاريخ والجغرافيا على سيناريو صراع هائل وقوده الأساس هو الفقراء والمهمشون العرب من السنّة والشيعة. ,تتصرف ايران في المنطقة العربية باعتبارها مجالاً حيوياً للاستثمار وتكديس أوراق مفاوضاتها مع الغرب، غير عابئة بتكدّس الجثث والمذابح والحرائق والموت في أراضي العرب الذين يوجهون بنادقهم الى بعضهم البعض على أسس مذهبية ودينية بدل توجيهها الى أنظمة الاستبداد، وهو الفخ الطائفي الذي نصبته هذه الأنظمة حماية لها وانخراطا في مشروع ايران الامبراطوري.”

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September 29th, 2013, 10:10 pm


306. Heads-up said:


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September 29th, 2013, 10:39 pm


307. Heads-up said:


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September 29th, 2013, 10:40 pm


308. Heads-up said:

Just so you know, we rely on very well informed and highly reliable sources who work very hard, around the clock and behind the scenes in order to keep you informed with the most important news even before it hits the waves. Our patrons gladly authorized the release of the following very very important heads up.

Our patrons have learned that so-called moderate, multi-faced, toothless and powerless Rouhani decided to visit the Guided Kingdom of Saudi Arabia the home of The Universal Prince of the Faithful, His Most Royal Highness King Abdullah Ibn Abdu-AlAzeez Al-Saud, may he be protected and given long life.

Ostensibly the the purpose of Rouhani’s visit is to perform the pilgrimage to the Holy House of Mecca coming up around the middle of October But as most of you know, low life Shia terrorists do not perform pilgrimage to the Holy House of Mecca. Instead, they do so to some idolatrous graves of so-called saints may the True Faithful be protected from such low kind of living. It turns out that the real purpose of the visit is to gain audience with His Most Royal Highness the King Universal Prince of the Faithful. Our patrons also learned that Rouhani offered to kiss the Royal Hand of His Royal Highness as a sign of good faith.

Our Most Beloved King is so kind and so good hearted that he at first looked with favour at the request. The King is known to have keen interest in lifting low lives out of misery whenever the occasion presents itself. However, His Royal Highness the King is now being reminded by his loyal advisers that such low lives as Rouhani and his mostly Shia terrorists who count for almost nil in the VAST SUNNI Domain of this World presided upon by His Most Royal Kingship have treacherous ways and always misinterepret acts of kindness in the opposite way they were intended to be. In other words such low lives are not worthy of acts of kindness. The advisors have proposed that the King must instead offer his feet for Rouhani to kiss as it is more appropriate considering the vast difference between the esteemed status of His Royal Highness and the pathetic one of the subject of the unsolicited visit.

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September 29th, 2013, 10:41 pm


309. airfel klima servisi said:

Our patrons have learned that so-called moderate, multi-faced, toothless and powerless Rouhani decided to visit the Guided Kingdom of Saudi Arabia the home of The Universal Prince of the Faithful, His Most Royal Highness King Abdullah Ibn Abdu-AlAzeez Al-Saud, may he be protected and given long life.

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September 30th, 2013, 8:15 am


310. What the New Syrian Opposition Alliance Means | The Strategist said:

[…] al-Nusra this bloc represents a majority of the militant opposition in Syria.  Their letter stated four main points: first, for all opposition to unite under an Islamic framework and operate under sharia […]

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September 30th, 2013, 3:53 pm


312. ALAN said:

Israel and the South African Nuclear Bomb Documents

Secret South African documents reveal that Israel offered to sell nuclear warheads to the apartheid regime, providing the first official documentary evidence of the state’s possession of nuclear weapons. The “top secret” minutes of meetings between senior officials from the two countries in 1975 show that South Africa’s defence minister, PW Botha, asked for the warheads and Shimon Peres, then Israel’s defence minister and now its president, responded by offering them “in three sizes”. The two men also signed a broad-ranging agreement governing military ties between the two countries that included a clause declaring that “the very existence of this agreement” was to remain secret.

As Netanyahu foams at the mouth about Iran’s non-existent nuclear threat over at the UN General Assembly, it should be remembered that Israel, which has never signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and refuses IAEA inspections, was exposed for trying to sell a clandestine nuclear weapons to South Africa; the very activity the NNPT is supposed to prevent.

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October 1st, 2013, 1:41 pm


313. #Syria’s Top Five Insurgent Leaders | YALLA SOURIYA said:

[…] Hassan Abboud, the general head of the Islamic movement of Ahrar Al-Sham, spearheaded recent formation of the Islamic Alliance, a powerful group of mainly northern-based militias. They have rejected the SNC and US backed exile […]

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October 1st, 2013, 4:16 pm


314. ALAN said:

Dear Mr Putin!
what to do with the Saudi terrorism-incubator! so be left unattended? Have not you the mechanism to crush this widespread cancer ?

Saudis Call for Intensification of Terror in Syria
Upset over the Russia-U.S. agreement over elimination of deadly gases from Syria, and Washington pulling back from war against the Assad regime, Saudi Foreign Minister Saud Al Faisal said in his September 30th remarks to the Friends of Syria group that Saudi Arabia wants
“intensification of political, economic and military support to the Syrian opposition … to change the balance of powers on the ground in Syria.”
In essence, the Saudis, Qataris and Turks have already begun the process. Last week, Abdul-Aziz Salamah, the political leader of Liwaa al-Tawhid, a terrorist group operating in northern Syria, announced that 13 of the leading armed opposition organizations inside Syria decided to unite their efforts under an Islamist-jihadist banner as the Islamist Alliance. The Islamist Alliance was established in order to create sharia throughout Syria and to formally reject the Western-backed Syrian National Coalition (SNC) as their legitimate representative. Significantly, the group includes some of the largest ostensible moderates, e.g., Free Syrian Army (FSA) as well as al-Qaeda affiliated organizations…..

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October 1st, 2013, 4:26 pm


315. ALAN said:

Hagel More Concerned About Israel than Iran and Its Allies

Israel’s Secret Nuclear Biological and Chemical Weapons (NBC)
According to Jane’s Defense Weekly, Israel – the only nuclear power in the Middle East, has 100 to 300 nuclear warheads and their appropriate vectors ( ballistic and cruise missiles and fighter-bombers ). According to SIPRI estimates, Israel has produced 690-950 kg of plutonium, and continues to produce as much as necessary to make from 10 to 15 bombs of the Nagasaki type each year.

It also produces tritium, a radioactive gas with which neutron warheads are made, which cause minor radioactive contamination but higher lethality. According to various international reports, also quoted by the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz, biological and chemical weapons are developed at the Institute for Biological Research, located in Ness- Ziona, near Tel Aviv. Officially, 160 scientists and 170 technicians are part of the staff, who for five decades have performed research in biology, chemistry, biochemistry, biotechnology, pharmacology, physics and other scientific disciplines. The Institute, along with the Dimona nuclear center , is “one of the most secretive institutions in Israel” under direct jurisdiction of the Prime Minister. The greatest secrecy surrounds research on biological weapons, bacteria and viruses that spread among the enemy and can trigger epidemics. Among them, the bacteria of the bubonic plague (the ” Black Death ” of the Middle Ages ) and the Ebola virus, contagious and lethal, for which no therapy is available…..

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October 1st, 2013, 4:39 pm


317. The Messy Rebel Situation in Syria, Just Got a Little Messier | Not So Foreign Policy Blog said:

[…] recent schism occurred recently (Sept. 24th), where several religious factions (at least 11) of the Syrian […]

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October 1st, 2013, 10:37 pm


318. TRANSCEND MEDIA SERVICE » Syria: “The Army of Islam”; Saudi Arabia’s Greatest Export said:

[…] hardline Salafi/Jihadi brigades such as Ahrar al-Sham, and Al Qaeda ideologues Jahbat al-Nusra – released a joint statement denouncing the western-backed expatriates of the “National Coalition” (NC), along with its […]

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October 7th, 2013, 7:05 am


319. Andrew Zaleski | What I’m Reading said:

[…] several FSA-affiliated brigades, pulled the rug from under the political opposition by signing a joint statement announcing that they do not recognize its National Coalition and affirming that they view Islamic […]

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October 7th, 2013, 8:23 pm


320. Islamist victory | Order and Tradition said:

[…] several FSA-affiliated brigades, pulled the rug from under the political opposition by signing a joint statement announcing that they do not recognize its National Coalition and affirming that they view Islamic […]

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October 18th, 2013, 12:39 pm


321. Strategic Intelligence Assessment for Syria (2) – State of Play Part I – Pro-Assad Groups and Moderate Opposition Forces | Red (team) Analysis said:

[…] President Jarba recognised that the brigades that signed the “Islamic framework” (see Lund, 24 September 2013) were not anymore “with” the SMC and the NC but “under the command of […]

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October 21st, 2013, 6:55 am


322. Saudi Arabia, Qatar may be playing dangerous game over Syria rebels – Global Public Square - Blogs said:

[…] the Nusra Front, al Qaeda’s other main affiliate in Syria. Roughly half the groups that joined in this announcement were Islamist brigades that have reportedly received backing from either Saudi Arabia or […]

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October 25th, 2013, 11:09 am


323. L’insurrection syrienne et la guerre des cartes | Proche-Orient et crise syrienne said:

[…] et du Levant) étaient au contraire majoritaires4 parmi l’insurrection, ce qui rejoint les conclusions d’Aron Lund, chercheur suédois spécialisé dans ce domaine5 et du représentant de l’ONU à Damas qui […]

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October 26th, 2013, 9:05 am


324. L’opposizione siriana si frammenta a vantaggio dei jihadisti di Matteo Garnero* | Noi Dem Salerno said:

[…] NUOVA COALIZIONE ISLAMICA – Molto più significativo in tal senso è stato il comunicato del 24 settembre che ha annunciato la nascita di una nuova coalizione islamica. L’annuncio è avvenuto tramite il […]

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November 5th, 2013, 3:18 am


325. The death of Abdelqader Saleh - Syria Comment said:

[…] Islamist Groups Declare Opposition to National Coalition and US Strategy [updated] […]

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November 17th, 2013, 10:18 pm


326. The death of Abdelqader Saleh by Aron Lund | YALLA SOURIYA said:

[…] recently signed on to the September 24 statement denouncing the National Coalition exiles, and calling for an internal rebel leadership. In line […]

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November 18th, 2013, 12:25 pm


327. Israel angriper Syrien, sida vid sida med Saudiarabien – det internationella samfundet tiger? | Anders Romelsjö på said:

[…] 30/11 Time om flygattacken 1/11 Fars News 1/12 Sydöstran 24/5 Counterpunch 15/10 , Aron Lund på Joshua Landis 24/9 Wall Street Journal 26/9 Guardian 2/10 William Blum i Counterpunch 8/10 Cornucopia blogg SvD […]

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December 4th, 2013, 4:00 am


328. L'opposizione siriana si frammenta a vantaggio dei jihadisti » said:

[…] NUOVA COALIZIONE ISLAMICA – Molto più significativo in tal senso è stato il comunicato del 24 settembre che ha annunciato la nascita di una nuova coalizione islamica. L’annuncio è avvenuto tramite […]

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December 7th, 2013, 9:57 am


329. Aftonbladet och ”den arabiska våren”. | Anders Romelsjö på said:

[…] 11/10 DN 12/10 Intervju med Putin mm Globalresearch artikelFria Tidningen 13/9 FIB-KulturfrontAron Lund 24/9 Björnbrum 27/9 ISTEAMS Ghoutarapport 16/9Time 16/9 om FN:s rapport Reuters 16/9 ICIJ:s rapport […]

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February 16th, 2014, 3:39 am


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