"It is not enough to know that there is a shadow government pulling the strings of the visible government- we must also act to expose it, and defeat it!"-Mark Matheny
Thursday, May 9, 2013
Free Syrian Army rebels defect to Islamist group Jabhat al-Nusra
The Guardian May 9, 2013
The flag of the Islamist rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra flying over the main square of the city of Raqqa in Syria. Photograph: Reuters
Syria's main armed opposition group, the Free Syrian Army (FSA), is losing fighters and capabilities to Jabhat al-Nusra, an Islamist organisation with links to al-Qaida that is emerging as the best-equipped, financed and motivated force fighting Bashar al-Assad's regime.
Evidence of the growing strength of al-Nusra, gathered from Guardian interviews with FSA commanders across Syria, underlines the dilemma for the US, Britain and other governments as they ponder the question of arming anti-Assad rebels.
John Kerry, the US secretary of state, said that if negotiations went ahead between the Syrian government and the opposition – as the US and Russia proposed on Tuesday – "then hopefully [arming the Syrian rebels] would not be necessary".