September 23, 2013

Report: Al Qaeda Beheads 40 FSA Rebels

I keep getting emails from people with links to videos showing "the Free Syrian Army beheading Syrian soldiers", or things to that affect. The sources of these videos are convoluted at best and at their worst outright propaganda videos of the worst sort made by the Baathist Assad regime. Some of them are even recycled videos from Iraq showing al Qaeda affiliated terrorists committing attrocities and then simply renamed "Syria".

The problem with the Free Syrian Army has been their affiliation with al Qaeda fighters. Their tolerance of them. The occasions when they work with al Qaeda. This is the kind of guilt by association that is legitimate criticism. It is not innuendo based on proximity, it's the actual guilt of those aiding and abetting terrorists.

But more and more we are getting reports that the alliance between the FSA and al Qaeda affiliated groups is falling apart. This would to be further evidence of that:

The terrorists of the Al-Qaeda-Affiliated Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant beheaded 40 FSA armed rebels in Al-Ba’ab region in the Eastern parts of Reef (countryside of) Aleppo on Saturday, FNA dispatches said.
So, is this a good sign? We all know Assad is a terrorist supporting despot which is why many people are eager to see him go. And the reason many don't support arming the rebels is that many of the rebels are al Qaeda or al Qaeda sympathizers. But if the FSA starts fighting al Qaeda and Assad, would that change your mind?

Personally, I don't think we have a bone in this particular fight. No national interest in Syria. Or at least, not enough of a national interest to justify action. So, even if the FSA were all secularists bent on creating a government of constitutionally limited power I still wouldn't support intervention. I'd cheer for the FSA. I'd be happy when they won battles, sad when they lost. But it's their fight, not ours. And if the Israelis felt it was in their national interests to help the FSA, then I wouldn't mind us vetoing Russian objection in the UN. But that's as far as I'd be willing to go.

What do you guys think?

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 10:33 AM | Comments |