Syrian Army Retakes important towns in Aleppo, Homs and Damascus. Both Salah and Salameh, leaders of largest Aleppo militia, wounded.
Posted by Joshua on Friday, November 15th, 2013
The Syrian Army has gone on the offensive, retaking a key town - al-Sfireh – on the south-east of Aleppo. On Monday, the town of Tal Aran, on the Safira-Aleppo road, also fell. The army then secured the area around the city’s airport and retook a strategically important base nearby, named Base 80, a large military position which rebels had held since February. Analysts claim that the base will help regime troops move on opposition-held areas of Aleppo.
The response of rebel militas was immediate. A statement by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) urged “all brigades and Muslims to face off against the enemy.” Liwa al-Tawhid urged people in Aleppo to “face up to regime attacks” and called for a mass mobilisation in Aleppo to halt a government advance. They claimed that government forces backed by fighters from the Lebanese Shia Islamist movement Hezbollah, Iranian Revolutionary Guards and members of Abu al-Fadl Abbas, an Iraqi Shia militia, had launched a “fierce offensive to reoccupy” Aleppo.
Abd al-Aziz Salameh in his hospital bed
According to ISIS sources, the loss al-Sfireh was due to fighting between ISIS and al-Nusra, the two main branches of al-Qaida in Syria. This news comes from an article published in Sana al-Sham News, an ISIS aligned weekly newspaper that was recently launched in the northern Aleppo countryside.
Here is the quote:
” قمنا بعملية مهمة في السفيرة ولكن حصل نزاع بيننا وبين جبهة النصرة والله تعالى يقول «ولا تنازعوا فتفشلوا فتذهب ريحكم» فدخل النظام السفيرة مرة ثانية بعد انسحابنا منها. ” [Translation] We carried out an important operation in al-Sfireh but a conflict arose between us and Jabhat al Nusra and Allah says “dispute not one with another lest ye falter and your strength depart from you” and the regime entered Sfireh again after we withdrew from it.
ISIS Leader – `Amr al-Shishani – military Amir of the Northern Region
Included in the new publication is an interview with the Chechen leader and military Amir of the Northern Region of ISIS, `Amr al-Shishani. الأمير العسكري للمنطقة الشمالية في تنظيم «الدولة الإسلامية في العراق والشام»، عمر الشيشاني
BBC arabic also researched his childhood in Georgia, where a reporter found some interesting information. He had mandatory military service in the Georgian army between 2006-2007 and signed a contract to work with the army after that period. He fought against the Russian army during the last Russia/Georgia confrontations in 2008. He was released from the army in 2010 after coming down with Tuberculosis. He was arrested later for stocking weapons and received a 3 year sentence but was released early due to his deteriorating health condition. He then traveled to Egypt, from where he hoped to go to Yemen to fight. But after some time was able to go to Syria, where he was shocked that people were listening to music, cutting their beards, and smoking cigarettes. Protestors were demanding “democracy and freedom” and not Islam. He went to Syria to apply Sharia Law.
He denies giving Asifat al-Shamal, the militia that hosted John McCain permission to meet McCain. He says the notion that he would permit their meeting is ridiculous because Americans are the enemies of Allah and Islam and there’s only the sword between him and the US. He remains an emir in ISIS and denies rumors that he quit the group. “How can I quit the Dawla Islamiya when it’s the project of the Islamic umma and all Muslims?” he asks. He did not join ISIS because of Baghdadi or Abu al Athir( والي حلب) , he did it for Allah.
ISIS was the main player behind the coast front and is responsible for the latest victories in Hama
عمر الشيشاني جاء ليطبق شرع الله: فوجئت بشعارات كالحرية والديموقراطية
تنشر «الأخبار» في ما يأتي حواراً مع الأمير العسكري للمنطقة الشمالية في تنظيم «الدولة الإسلامية في العراق والشام»، عمر الشيشاني، أجرته مجلة «سنا الشام» التابعة للتنظيم، في العاشر من الشهر الماضي، ونشرته يوم 9/11/2013
The Syrian Army issued a statement announcing major advances in southeastern countryside of Homs and the capture of 3 towns. The villages that they captured fell in rebel hands earlier this month in an attack that included the capturing of an army weapons depot in one of the villages, which was said to be the second largest arms depot in the country.
Cutting Off the Wrong Head
An ISIS fighter cut off the head of a fighter, claiming he was an Iraqi Shiite fighting for the Assad regime. It turned out that
Militants from al Qaeda-affiliate Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) issued a statement asking for forgiveness after a video was posted online of ISIS fighters brandishing the decapitated head of a commander of Ahrar al-Sham, an ISIS ally who ISIS says it beheaded by mistake.
Here is the Telegraph story about it by Richard Spencer: Al-Qaeda-linked rebels apologise after cutting off head of wrong person: Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham militants say sorry for decapitating a fellow extremist rather than enemy