Syria

Syria Wants the UN to Acknowledge Jabhat Al Nusra's Links to Al Qaeda

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Credit: de:Benutzer:Eborutta/wikimedia

The Syrian government has urged the United Nations to classify Jabhat Al Nusra, a jihadist group fighting against Assad's regime, as a group with links to Al Qaeda. The head of Jabhat Al Nusra recently pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda's leader while distancing himself from reports that the group had merged with Al Qaeda's branch in Iraq.

The U.S. labeled Jabhat Al Nusra as a terrorist organisation in December, a move that was not welcomed by some Syrian rebels. 

Were the U.N. to recognize Jabhat Al Nusra as a group with links to Al Qaeda then it could be subject to the sanctions outlined by the U.N.'s Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee.

From the BBC:

The Syrian statement refers to the UN resolution that established the al-Qaeda Sanctions Committee.

Under the UN's sanctions regime, those with links to al-Qaeda have their financial assets frozen and face travel bans.

The sanctions also imposed an arms embargo on al-Qaeda.

Yesterday, the Russian foreign minister said that Al Qaeda could use Syria as a base for future operations in the region. Russia, one of Assad's few allies during the conflict, has been arguing for a political solution while the U.K. and France have both supported ending the European Union's arms embargo on Syria in order to arm some of Assad's opponents. 

That Assad's opposition includes jihadist groups weakens the case for intervention as weapons given to rebels in the Free Syrian Army could end up in the hands of the extremist elements of the opposition. Such concerns have not stopped Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) from calling for increased American involvement in Syria.

While no one doubts that Assad's regime has been committing crimes against innocent Syrians there are doubts about what a post-Assad Syria is going to look like. The diversity of Assad's opposition means that whatever transfer of power that occurs once Assad is gone will not be without complications. 

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  1. there are doubts about what a post-Assad Syria is going to look like.

    Not really. I think everyone is pretty confident that it will be a giant fucking mess.

    1. That’s why the West has to get involved. Just think what chaotic, bombed-out shitholes Iraq and Afghanistan would be today without the benevolent hand of Emperor Sam guiding them inexorably toward democratic capitalism.

      1. Ahem, that’s bombed-out shitholes with NUKES POINTED RIGHT AT US!

      2. You can argue all you want about how mismanaged and misguided the war in Iraq was, but Baghdad was in much better shape after the fall of Saddam than Damascus is now. Once Assad goes down Damascus will get even worse.

        1. “Damascus, ‘aurence, not this! DAMASCUS!”

          “No prisoners”

          “NO PRISONERS! NO PRISONERS!!”

  2. That Assad’s opposition includes jihadist groups weakens the case for intervention as weapons given to rebels in the Free Syrian Army could end up in the hands of the extremist elements of the opposition. Such concerns have not stopped Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) from calling for increased American involvement in Syria.

    His argument presumably is that if Assad is inevitably going to go, then it’s better that non-Jabhat Al Nusra factions be relatively stronger than Jabhat Al Nusra.

    In fact, the “diversity of Assad’s opposition” can easily be made into an argument in favor of intervention and supporting one of the factions, compared to either a situation where the opposition was uniformly friendly (and didn’t need US help) or uniformly jihadist. Not necessarily a sufficiently persuasive argument, but not that difficult to make.

    1. When Western appealing social democrats join revolts, they are first leveraged as front men to extract support from Western governments. After which, they are eaten alive. No good will come of this. None.

      1. Absolutely.

        And Washington falls for it again and again.

  3. The sanctions also imposed an arms embargo on al-Qaeda.

    Clearly this has been extremely successful.

    1. When cocaine is criminalized, only criminals will have access to cocaine. That is how I put it to an ignorant progtard once so it would have a chance to seep through his skull that gun bans don’t even work as intended. He accused me of comparing apples to oranges.

  4. What difference, at this point, does it make?

    1. Assad is just looking for a fig leaf of international legitimacy for blowing people up. Sort of like BOOOSH in the aughts.

  5. “The head of Jabhat Al Nusra recently pledged allegiance to Al Qaeda’s leader while distancing himself from reports that the group had merged with Al Qaeda’s branch in Iraq.”

    That sounds like he pledged allegiance to [Godwin edit] while denying that he had merged with the Bavarian Nazi Party. Which is the most salient fact here?

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