CommunityFDL Main Blog

ISIS and Al-Qaeda Takeover Base Of US-Backed Rebel Leader In Syria, Gain US Weapons

The Al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria, Jabhat al Nusra, was joined by ISIS in a successful operation that took over the headquarters of a prominent US-backed rebel leader in Deir Sinbul, Syria. The leader, Jamal Maarouf, and his fighters were forced to flee into the mountains marking a major setback for the US as Islamist forces hostile to the US continue to gain ground in Syria.

Jamal Massourf and his forces made a name for themselves pushing ISIS out of parts of Northern Syria in January and have received ample US support. Unfortunately, this meant that when ISIS and Al-Qaeda took over their base they were able to secure US weapons given to the rebels including TOW anti-tank missiles.

Ironically the US-backed Syrian rebels needed the anti-tank missiles ISIS now has to fight tanks ISIS took control of when ISIS defeated another US-backed force, the Iraq Army.

Al Qaida-backed militants Saturday stormed the base of the most prominent civilian commander in the U.S.-backed Syrian rebel force, forcing him and his fighters to flee into hiding in the Jebal al Zawiya mountains of northern Syria. Jamal Maarouf, a contractor in private life, became internationally known for leading the successful offensive in January that forced the Islamic State from most of two northern provinces. His ouster from his own village was an enormous setback for him, the rebel forces and his international backers.

Even more ominous was that that the Islamic State, now far stronger and claiming to run a Caliphate in Syria and Iraq, reportedly had joined Jabhat al Nusra in the attack on the village of Deir Sinbul.

So as with the Free Syrian Army, the net result of the US arming these so-called moderate rebels is that forces antagonistic to the US have more US weapons. A good portion of ISIS’ weapons are already US made – how many times do we need to run this experiment?

The fact that Al-Qaeda and ISIS are working together also does not bode well for US aspirations in Syria and Iraq. The groups had reportedly been divided last year but apparently have united in the wake of the US bombing campaign and to take on a common enemy in the form of the Assad government. If the groups continue to work together any US-backed rebel force is going to have a difficult time gaining ground in Syria.

CommunityThe Bullpen

ISIS and Al-Qaeda Takeover Base Of US-Backed Rebel Leader In Syria, Gain US Weapons

The Al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria, Jabhat al Nusra, was joined by ISIS in a successful operation that took over the headquarters of a prominent US-backed rebel leader in Deir Sinbul, Syria. The leader, Jamal Maarouf, and his fighters were forced to flee into the mountains marking a major setback for the US as Islamist forces hostile to the US continue to gain ground in Syria.

Jamal Massourf and his forces made a name for themselves pushing ISIS out of parts of Northern Syria in January and have received ample US support. Unfortunately, this meant that when ISIS and Al-Qaeda took over their base they were able to secure US weapons given to the rebels including TOW anti-tank missiles.

Ironically the US-backed Syrian rebels needed the anti-tank missiles ISIS now has to fight tanks ISIS took control of when ISIS defeated another US-backed force, the Iraq Army.

Al Qaida-backed militants Saturday stormed the base of the most prominent civilian commander in the U.S.-backed Syrian rebel force, forcing him and his fighters to flee into hiding in the Jebal al Zawiya mountains of northern Syria. Jamal Maarouf, a contractor in private life, became internationally known for leading the successful offensive in January that forced the Islamic State from most of two northern provinces. His ouster from his own village was an enormous setback for him, the rebel forces and his international backers.

Even more ominous was that that the Islamic State, now far stronger and claiming to run a Caliphate in Syria and Iraq, reportedly had joined Jabhat al Nusra in the attack on the village of Deir Sinbul.

So as with the Free Syrian Army, the net result of the US arming these so-called moderate rebels is that forces antagonistic to the US have more US weapons. A good portion of ISIS’ weapons are already US made – how many times do we need to run this experiment?

The fact that Al-Qaeda and ISIS are working together also does not bode well for US aspirations in Syria and Iraq. The groups had reportedly been divided last year but apparently have united in the wake of the US bombing campaign and to take on a common enemy in the form of the Assad government. If the groups continue to work together any US-backed rebel force is going to have a difficult time gaining ground in Syria.

Previous post

The Roundup

Next post

Final Polls Say Medical Marijuana Amendment in Florida Might Come Just Short

Jane Hamsher

Jane Hamsher

Jane is the founder of Firedoglake.com. Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, Alternet and The American Prospect. She’s the author of the best selling book Killer Instinct and has produced such films Natural Born Killers and Permanent Midnight. She lives in Washington DC.
Subscribe in a reader