Al-Qaeda Throws Lot in with Syrian Rebels

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Al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri reiterated his call for jihad against the Syrian dictatorship in a message posted on the Internet yesterday. The conflict in Syria pits the Assad regime, Iran and Hezbollah against the Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda and the Arab states. Non-Islamist Syrians desiring genuine democracy, including the Christian minority, are caught in-between.

Zawahiri tells Muslims to support the uprising “with all that he can, with his life, money, opinion, as well as information.” The message comes after 25 were killed and 175 were wounded in two suicide bombings in Aleppo of security service buildings. The attacks are believed to have been directly ordered by Ayman al-Zawahiri and carried out by Al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Iraq.

He is especially concerned about how foreign powers will influence the Syrian opposition as it looks for outside help.

“Our people in Syria, don’t rely on the West or the United States or Arab governments and Turkey,” Zawahiri says.

His video was released on the same day that the Arab League asked the United Nations to send a peacekeeping force into Syria and agreed to “materially” support the opposition, likely paving the way for military assistance to the Free Syria Army that is fighting the regime’s forces.

The Muslim Brotherhood, unlike Al-Qaeda, is happy to accept foreign military intervention if it will lead to victory. Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi, the top Brotherhood cleric, declared that it is permissible for Muslims to welcome U.N.-backed intervention in Syria if the Arab states are unable to stop the violence.

Al-Qaeda has had an on-again, off-again relationship with the Assad regime. Syria has imprisoned members of Al-Qaeda, as the terrorist group is ideologically committed to replacing the regime with Islamist rule. Assad has also helped Al-Qaeda when their interests have aligned, particularly in Iraq and Lebanon. Relations between Iraq and Syria hit the breaking point in 2009 when the Iraqis released evidence that the Assad regime was backing Al-Qaeda and other terrorists carrying out attacks in Iraq. The relationship has healed since then as Iranian influence over Iraq has grown.

The Iraqi Deputy Interior Minister says that terrorists are crossing the border into Syria and shipping arms to the opposition fighting Assad. The price of a Kalashnikov assault rifle has increased from $100-200 to $1000-$1500 because of the rise in demand, he claims. However, the Iraqi government is backing Assad and could just be trying to substantiate the dictatorship’s claims that it is only fighting “armed gangs” and terrorists.

Since coming to power in 2000, Bashar Assad’s strategy has been to portray his regime as the only thing stopping an Islamist takeover. Secular democratic voices are silenced while the jihadist rhetoric of Islamists is often allowed. The regime recently released a top Al-Qaeda prisoner, Abu Musab al-Suri, who used to lead the terrorist group’s operations in Europe. He oversaw the 2005 bombings in London and was involved in the 2004 bombings in Madrid.

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  • ObamaYoMoma

    who argues for an Islamic “reformation” to bring the region into modernity.

    Good luck, as Islam is not only not a religion, it is impossible to be reformed. Not only that but after Martin Luther nailed his thesis to the door, the reformation still took two to three hundred years to go down. Anyone wishing for a reformation to manifest and save the world just in the nick of time is delusional.

    As for as secular Syrians hope for a liberal democracy goes, there is a better chance of hell freezing over before that will ever happen.

    And if somehow a miracle did happen to occur and the secular Syrians were somehow miraculously successful in establishing a liberal Western style democracy, then Syria would become the next Israel and like Israel would also face a permanent jihad being waged against it perpetually just like Israel.

    Qatar, a U.S. “ally,”

    That's a joke. If you believe that Qatar is a legitimate US ally, then you must believe that Bill Clinton didn't inhale.

    To this day, a struggle is underway in Libya between secularists and Islamists

    How much you want to bet who wins? By the way, what are Islamists? The existence of radical Muslims, extremist Muslims, Islamist Muslims, and moderate Muslims, just like the existence of radical Islam, extremist Islam, peaceful Islam, and moderate Islam are all false PC multicultural myths and misconceptions about Islam, and proliferating that garbage only contributes to the dumbing down of America..

    • WilliamJamesWard


    • Jeya

      Here is what you want to know of Isalm and its Sharia laws,
      I must say the lady speaker well deserves a medal of honour.


  • Bernard

    Persecution is also very much present in North Africa where I live but thank God the Algerian Church now has 100,000 members and keep growing. Egypt has experienced the Arab Spring, but now is living his winter nightmare.

    Eight Coptic Christian families have been evicted from a village in northern Egypt following clashes sparked by rumors of an illicit affair between a Coptic man and a Muslim woman, a rights group said on Sunday.

    Please pray for our coptic brothers and sisters.

    Thank you Jihadwatch for fighting the good fight.

  • bernard

    And thank you Frontpage mag and all the network

  • mrbean

    We should not really be surprised at the Mid East chaos. Look who is running US foreign policy, Obama the clandestine Muslim Marxist racist who has never done anything and Hillary Clinton, a post menopausal closet communist hag who has failed at everything she has ever attempted.

  • mrbean

    The White House announced plans on Monday to help "Arab Spring" countries swept by revolutions with more than $800 million in economic aid, while maintaining U.S. military aid to Egypt. In his annual budget message to Congress, President Barack Obama asked that military aid to Egypt be kept at the level of recent years — $1.3 billion — despite a crisis triggered by an Egyptian probe targeting and holding captive American citizens. Get this clandestine Muslim out of control fool out of the white house as soon as possible.

  • NotaBene

    Oh puh-lease. If al-Qaeda said they loved chocolate you'd declare that chocolate was evil.

    What does AQ have to do with the Arab Spring? NOTHING, and that makes them so mad…it's people like you who want to give AQ a victory whenever possible.

  • Mike in VA

    "Conflict pits the Assad regime, Iran and Hezbollah against the Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda and Arab states…."

    What a magnificent scenario. If it weren't for the plight of the decent people in Syria who just want to live in peace an freedom, one would wish for a long bloody stalemate that ultimately incapacitates all the parties referenced in this conflict.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    No matter who comes out on top and who is the new leadership in Syria, America
    will still have a hostile regime to deal with. Obama will offer his hand and Clinton
    will look for photo-opps……………..It's a big world and we can find other Nations
    that are not hostile to trade with and engender energy cooperation.Canada wants
    to grow our trade but Obama wants to stifle our survival and encourage the death
    grip of Arab Oil on our collective throats……………………………….William

  • maghrebchristians

    God is doing a work in the Arab world today where all this violent is going on. But I thank God that when the tunnel gets darker there is a light at the end. I believe revival will be coming soon where all praise the Lord in the Arab world today.

    Egyptian Security forces yesterday prevented a rally of hundreds of Copts and activists from various political groups from reaching the Egyptian Parliament. The rally was staged to condemn the eviction of 8 Coptic families from their homes in El-Ameriya in Alexandria, on January 27.

    Lets keep praying brothers and Sisters