Jabhat al-Nusra and Other Islamists Briefly Capture Historic Christian Town of Ma’loula

  Jabhat al-Nusra and Other Islamists Briefly Capture Historic Christian Town of Ma’loula By Matthew Barber for Syria Comment   Ma’loula (or Maaloula) is one of those unique places you may be lucky to visit—or perhaps were lucky to have visited, were you fortunate enough to have been in Syria before the conflict began. An […]

Should the Use of Chemical Weapons Prompt a US Attack in Syria?

If it is Determined that the Assad Regime Used Chemical Weapons Against Civilians, Should the United States and its Allies Attack Syria?   In answer to this question, Joshua Landis and Syria Comment provide the following statement:   The US must respond to the use of chemical weapons in a forceful manner, but should not […]

Sheikh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi Interviewed by Syria Comment

Sheikh Muhammad al-Yaqoubi Interviewed by Syria Comment by Matthew Barber   In a previous post I revealed that Sheikh Muhammad al-Ya’qoubi was elected as the first non-Ikhwaan-linked religious figure of the National Coalition. This event did take place, even though his followers were disappointed to discover that his tenure would not see the light of […]

Sheikh al-Yaqoubi Elected to the NC—its first non-Brotherhood-aligned religious figure

The Rise of the Sufis by Matthew Barber—This story first appeared on Syria Comment   Newly-elected to the Syrian National Coalition, Sheikh Mohammad al-Yaqoubi is moderate, influential, and ready to go to work   From the beginning of the uprising, mainstream Syrian Sunni ‘ulema—the traditional scholars who have spoken for Islam for centuries and who […]

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 […]