ALL EYES ARE ON THE ISLAMIC STATE, aka, ISIS, ISIL, BUT ANOTHER GROUP BEARS CLOSE WATCHING WHILE ISIS IS SO BUSY ON SO MANY FRONTS...NUSRA FRONT, OR AL-NUSRA FRONT, OR, MORE POPULARLY "JaN" (JABHAT AL-NUSRA) OUT OF SYRIA AND LEBANON (OUT OF LEBANON VIA THE 'JUND AL-SHAM' GROUP).
YOU MAY NOT HAVE EVEN HEARD OF THIS FACTION, BUT THEY JUST MAY STEP IN AS "TOP DOG" WHEN ISIS GOES THE WAY OF THE WIND.
THEY SOMETIMES CALL THEMSELVES "THE SUPPORT FRONT FOR THE PEOPLE OF AL-SHAM", (AL-SHAM IS 'GREATER SYRIA') BUT ARE BASICALLY JUST AL-QAEDA UNDER A DIFFERENT LABEL.
THIS GROUP FORMED IN JANUARY OF 2012, AS A RESULT OF THE SYRIAN CIVIL WAR, ALLEGEDLY UNDER PRIOR ORDERS FROM ABU MUSAB AL-ZARQAWI (BEFORE HIS LATEST DEATH) TO FORM THIS NEW GROUP IN SYRIA/LEBANON.
SUPPOSEDLY, AL-ZARQAWI HANDPICKED WHAT MOST BELIEVE TO BE A SYRIAN, ONE ABU MUHAMMAD AL-JULANI TO LEAD THE NEW PACK.
OTHER 'SOURCES' SAY AL-JULANI (OR AL-GOLANI) WAS SCHOOLED IN TERROR OPERATIONS AND PREPARED FOR LEADERSHIP BY THE HEAD OF THE ISLAMIC STATE IN IRAQ, ABU BAKR AL-BAGHDADI.
NOW AL-JULANI HAS ALSO BEEN DECLARED KILLED THREE TIMES, ONCE IN 2006 IN IRAQ, IN 2008 IN SYRIA, AND AGAIN IN SYRIA IN DECEMBER, 2013.
MOST IN THAT REGION SAY HIS DEATH HAS BEEN GREATLY EXAGGERATED, THAT HE IS ALIVE AND QUITE WELL.
IF HE IS DEAD, IT WOULD NOT BE THE FIRST TIME A TERRORIST GROUP WAS HEADED BY A DEAD GUY, AS USAMA BIN LADEN WAS DEAD FOR OVER A DECADE BEFORE THE U.S. CLAIMED TO HAVE KILLED HIM.
IN SPITE OF RUMORS OF HIS DEATH, AL-JAZEERA INTERVIEWED AL-JULANI A FEW DAYS AFTER IT WAS SAID HE'D BEEN KILLED...AGAIN.
IN SYRIA, NUSRA'S FIGHTERS ARE KNOWN FOR THEIR HIGH SUCCESS RATE, THEIR AGGRESSIVENESS, AND SEEM TO BE THE "REBELS" OF CHOICE FOR THOSE OPPOSED TO ASSAD.
IT IS DESIGNATED A "TERRORIST ORGANIZATION" BY THE CURSED U.N. AND BY MOST EUROPEAN AND WESTERN NATIONS.
AT THE DAWN OF 2015, RUMOR HAD IT THAT NUSRA WANTED TO BREAK FREE OF AL-QAEDA, BUT THEY SOON DENIED THAT, REAFFIRMING THEIR ALLEGIANCE TO THAT CIA-CREATED CLIENT.
NUSRA IS ANOTHER OF THOSE "EXTREMIST MUSLIM" ENTITIES DEDICATED TO SHARIA LAW, AND ALSO DEDICATED TO THE SUNNI SECT OF ISLAM.
ITS NATIVE SYRIAN MUJAHIDEEN SAY THAT THEY ARE MORE CONCERNED WITH SYRIA'S NEAR ENEMIES THAN THE ALL-OUT JIHAD DECLARED AGAINST ALL WESTERN NATIONS AND ALL OF EARTH'S NON-ISLAMIC NATIONS.
NUSRA SAYS IT IS NOT OUT TO DESTROY SHIA MUSLIMS LIKE RIVAL ISIS.
THEY SAY THEY HAVE NO INTENTIONS OF ATTACKING THE USA , BUT DO ADMIT THEY SEE AMERICA AND ISRAEL AS ENEMIES OF ISLAM.
THAT'S NICE, YES?
HEZBOLLAH SEEMS TO BE ONE OF THOSE NEAR ENEMIES NUSRA WANTS TO SEE GONE FROM THE FACE OF THE PLANET.
I WISH THEM WELL IN THAT ENDEAVOR, AND WOULD LIKE TO SEE THEM CONCENTRATE MORE ON HAMAS.
NUSRA MAY JUST HAVE A DISTINCT ADVANTAGE OVER ISIS/IS IN THAT IT HAS HAD THE CLEVER IDEA NOT TO INSIST ON SHARIA LAW IN AREAS IT HAS CONQUERED, IF THE PEOPLE ARE OPPOSED TO IT.
NUSRA RUNS A GOOD "PUBLIC RELATIONS" GAME.
IT SEEMS GIVEN MORE TO TRYING TO ENDEAR ITSELF TO THE GENERAL POPULATION AND TO SMALLER "JIHAD GROUPS" THAN TO THE THROAT-SLASHING, CRUCIFYING, BURN-THEM-ALIVE GAME ITS RIVAL ISIS IS PLAYING.
NUSRA GETS LOST IN MAINSTREAM MEDIA HEADLINES, PERHAPS, BECAUSE IT IS JUST ONE OF THE MANY 'TEAMS' IN THE LEAGUE DUBBED "JAYSH AL-FATAH", THE ARMY OF SO-CALLED REBELS WHICH INCLUDE MORE LITTLE HOPEFULS THAN WE MAY COUNT.
BUT NUSRA IS BECOMING A 'BIGGER FISH' IN THE TEEMING POND OF SYRIA'S ANTI-ASSAD GROUPS.
"Nusra is gaining ground in Idlib and is one of the groups actually fighting the Syrian army, Hezbollah and their Iranian allies in Qalamoun on the border between Lebanon and Syria. If they can emerge from that contest even partially victorious they may end up being more influential than IS [ISIS] in the long run."
WELL, NUSRA WAS ONE OF SEVERAL REBEL GROUPS WHO TOOK THE VILLAGES OF IDLIB, MASTOUMA, KURIN, ETC, IN NORTHERN SYRIA IN APRIL OF THIS YEAR.
"Al-Golani gained prominence in April, when he rejected an attempted takeover of Nusra by al-Baghdadi, revealing a widening rift within al-Qaeda’s global network. Al-Golani distanced himself from claims that the two groups had merged into a group called the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), as announced by al-Baghdadi."
FOR CONSIDERABLY MORE ON NUSRA FRONT, IN PDF FORM FROM THE QUILLIAM GROUP, <CLICK HERE> .
Jabhat al-Nusra (JN) is a Syrian jihadist group fighting against Bashar Al-Assad’s Ba’athist regime, with
the aim of establishing an Islamist state in Syria. With approximately 5000 members JN is by no
means the largest group fighting in the conflict, although it has often been described as the most
effective. There are a number of similarities between JN and al-Qaeda In Iraq (AQI), which serves as
evidence of their shared history beginning in the early 2000s. The short-term strategy of JN is
primarily military focused, although preparations are being made for long-term sustainability of the
group, including the organisation of a humanitarian support group and the procurement of heavy
There are three unusual aspects of JN’s military operations:
1. They target media facilities and personalities, assassinating popular figures such as state TV
anchorman Mohammed Said, and filming his beheading. Although assassinations are
considered standard jihadist activity, targeting the media is unexpected.
2. The lack of JN attacks on government airplanes and helicopters. Although many MIGs and
helicopters have been shot down by rebels, only one such attack has been claimed by JN
forces. This would seem to demonstrate a lack of man-portable air-defence systems
(MANPADs), consistent with the international effort to keep these weapons out of jihadist
3. They do not mount rescue operations to free captured jihadist fighters. There have been
instances in which prisoners have been released as part of a larger operation with a different
focus, but in no case has their rescue been the main aim of a mission. This is unusual for a
jihadist group as rescue operations were a common occurrence in Iraq.
Syrian culture is not naturally conducive to Islamist governance, given its religious pluralism
and history of relative religious freedom and tolerance. Real indications of popular support will only
become visible post-Assad when the battle between rebel groups will begin in earnest. Following the
fall of the Ba'athist regime, JN will either attack the whole opposition immediately, taking it by
surprise to conquer, or use the Libyan model of occupying strategic places to negotiate for their own
ends. It is likely that JN will face internal struggles as well at this stage, as fractures in their ranks are
bound to appear when tactics change. Cohesion is essential for JN to remain an effective force, and
fragmentation seems likely. "
AND NOW WE SIMPLY SIT BACK AND WATCH THE ANCIENT GAME PLAY OUT IN THE MIDDLE EAST.
IT'S BEEN GOING ON FOR CENTURIES...SUNNI AGAINST SHIIA, SHIA AGAINST SUNNI, EACH ONE CLAIMING THE RIGHT TO RULE.
HOWEVER, BECAUSE NUSRA KEEPS FINDING WAYS TO ENDEAR ITSELF TO THE SYRIAN PEOPLE, LIKE GIVING AWAY BREAD, GASOLINE, CLOTHING, SENDING TEACHERS INTO VILLAGES, ETC, WE CAN ALMOST BE SURE THAT ONCE ISIS IS OUT OF THE PICTURE, NUSRA WILL BE THE FORCE TO BE RECKONED WITH .
NUSRA IS UP-AND-COMING...WATCH FOR IT.