Problems for Syrians in Egypt; News from Kurdish North; Looting & Oil; Round-up

by Matthew Barber The scale of this propaganda piece is impressive: An ISIS billboard in Raqqa promoting shari’a law. The yellow text at the top says “The state’s civil law is contrary to the religion of Allah,” followed by a verse from the Qur’an (3:83 “Do they, then, seek a religion other than Allah’s, while […]

The Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham Expands Into Rural Northern Syria

In the previous post, Aymenn al-Tamimi discussed developments in the relationship between two primary al-Qa’ida affiliates operating in Syria: Jabhat al-Nusra, and the ISIS. Through his analysis he concluded that in some areas the distinction between Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) is blurry, while in other areas the two […]

New Addition to the Syrian Islamic Front

by Aron Lund for Syria Comment The Haqq Battalions Gathering, a militant group in the Hama province, announced in mid-April 2013 that they are joining the Syrian Islamic Front (SIF). This is the first time since the SIF’s creation in December 2012 that an independent outside organization of any consequence decides to join the front. […]

Oil Wars—Nusra’s Expanding Reach—Syrian Taliban

By Matthew Barber and the Syria Video team This long post contains the following sections: The Defectors Defect Will EU Oil Purchases Finance al-Qaida? Al-Musareb: Al-Nusra Punishes a Village Regime-Style Syrian Taliban The Opposition’s Ambivalent Response to al-Nusra’s Affiliation with al-Qaida (and the Plan to Introduce an Alternative Islamic Law in Syria) Jabhat al-Nusra is […]

Islamic State Declared in Syria

by Matthew Barber   Al-Qaida and Jabhat al-Nusra have each declared an Islamic State in Syria, in their own way. And by the way, Jabhat al-Nusra is al-Qaida. The head of al-Nusra, Abu Muhammad al-Julani, finally confirmed the obvious through an official declaration of allegiance.   An Islamic State in Syria? For Real? Al-Qaida in […]