State Department Will Designate 9 Percent of Syrian Rebels as a Terrorist Group

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


The problem is that it’s also the 9 percent that has the best equipment and the best fighters. But this should be interesting.

The U.S. State Department is planning to designate the al-Nusra Front, a radical Islamist group in Syria, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization, according to two U.S. officials who spoke to CNN on background.

The goal of the designation is to isolate extremists groups in Syria while giving a boost to the new political opposition group unveiled at a summit in Doha, Qatar, last month.

The latest U.S. data estimates al-Nusra makes up roughly 9% of the rebel forces battling the regime.

Al-Nusra is basically the local version of Al Qaeda and is largely made up of foreign Sunni fighters battling to overthrow the Neo-Shiite Syrian government and replace it with an Islamic state.

The “new opposition” is led by a Muslim Brotherhood member and backed by Qatar, which funneled weapons to Jihadists leading to the creation of the new opposition. So you can see where this is going.

U.S. officials say the designation of al-Nusra is an effort to highlight the good opposition and express concern about the bad guys.

“We want to put the opposition on notice that these guys are becoming more of an issue and they need to do something about them,” one official said.

Right. Good luck with that. The Free Syrian Army relies heavily on Al-Nusra and a lot of FSA victories have really been Al-Nusra victories.

And Al-Nusra has the money and the firepower.

Their ferocity and fighting skills have made the jihadist “Al-Nusra Front the dominant force in Aleppo now,” eclipsing the Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated Liwa al-Tawhid, once the strongest brigade in the city

“The rebels do it for ransom to pay their fighters and buy weapons, but Al-Nusra never needs to negotiate — they kill their hostages.”

“Most FSA fighters are young. Some are even teenagers and carry unsophisticated weapons,” said civil servant Abdullah, 32, who lives in the army-held Old City.

“But Al-Nusra fighters are older and have modern weapons and bullet-proof vests.”

So that’s the question. Syria is coming down to a race between the Iranian allied Syrian government, the Muslim Brotherhood and Al Qaeda.

Which of these do we want? How about none. There is no possible outcome that we have any reason to want in Syria, except an indefinite war between all sides.

  • whatthehell

    Once the 9% are fully identified and properly designated, the remaining 91% will be rearmed and assigned to protect the newly-appointed US Ambassador to Syria right after Assad is ousted…
    http://townhall.com/columnists/dianawest/2012/10/

  • Charles Roberts

    Mr. Greenfield, you have hit the nail on the head, again! I agree that the best policy is to watch the various Islamists tear each other apart…..without us taking any sides.

  • http://www.adinakutnicki.com AdinaK

    Oh yeah..State's nitpicking ought to do the trick, thus saving the region from Islamist hell fire! And do pigs fly too? What a load of bull coming from the Pyromaniac's chief enablers at State, particularly via Hill's Deputy COS, Huma Abedin. Sort of like setting up plausible deniability! http://adinakutnicki.com/2012/11/25/the-coming-en

    Staties must be smoking too much hookah to think that others are buying the smoke they are blowing!

    Adina Kutnicki, Israel – http://www.adinakutnicki.com/about/

  • Coptic John

    Esam El-Erian (a Muslim Terroristhood member) in US now, what he is doing there? to thank their representative in the White House Hussein Woebama for being silent about their crimes in Egypt, right?

  • Arlie

    I just read that the "rebels"- none of them good, as they are all crazy-have just captured the chloride factory at Al Safira east of Aleppo. This factory is Syria's biggest chemical weapons store that houses Scud D armed with chemical warheads ready to fire at Israel. Iran has two new warships, 1 destroyer and 1 helicopter carrier just docked at Port Sudan. Iran spent $800 million for this warship that can reach 8000 nautical miles- USA. http://www.debka.com

    Is this what the world elite want, depopulation so they can have their world government and world financial system and world religion? They are all he!! bent on breaking the everlasting covenant and bringing on the judgment of the nations. I pray God's people be spared and this will be the perdition of the ungodly men.

    • Mary Sue

      I have a feeling that Al Safira is going to be all lit up like a christmas tree by Israel if they figure out just what's going on in there (and they probably have, they're probably just planning what to do about it).

  • whatthehell

    Well, looks like all the 9% have just been identified now… http://israelmatzav.blogspot.co.il/2012/12/us-tra

  • JacksonPearson

    When push come to shove, there's no such person as a "moderate Muslim." Why?:

    “These descriptions are very ugly. It is offensive and an insult to our religion. There is no moderate or immoderate Islam. Islam is Islam, and that’s it.” — Turkey’s Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

  • W. C. Taqiyya

    Good post again and funny. Yeah, like anyone thinks what the State Department says is in any way significant. What a joke. Lemme just offer a very quick best case scenario here. Assad is gone and his supporters scattered or slaughtered. Iranian backed Hezbollah mercs go back home to Lebanon and hope the Sunni fighters backed by the Saudis , et al don't come a hunting. Back in Syria, the Kurds carve out a section of semi-autonomous turf and promise to stop harassing the Turks. The Sunni majority , along with the Kurds and other minorities get together, under Turk supervision, and cobble together some sort of ruling commission. Uneasy peace slowly followed by settled peace in a federated sort of Syria. More than likely, my sunny forecast is not going to happen. But hey, even I like to dream sometimes.

  • whatthehell

    You left out 2 essential steps that are guaranteed to happen as soon as Assad falls: (a) 3 million Alawites are slaughtered, and (b) The UN in response immediately convenes an emergency session to discuss Israel's housing units project plans. After that, anything goes…