January 7, 2014

Syria Rebels Fight al-Qaeda as Iraq Implodes

Aryn Baker, Time

The Associated Press

There is no surer sign of a liberated city than the release of prisoners. But in the case of Raqqa, in northern Syria, the 50 prisoners in question were not captives of the government, but of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria [ISIS], an al-Qaeda franchise ostensibly aligned with rebels pushing for the fall of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Even as ISIS, which got its start as al-Qaeda in Iraq back in the days of the American war, regains territory in the Iraqi province of Anbar, it is slowly being pushed out of its northern Syrian strongholds by a broad coalition of moderate and Islamist groups fed up with its draconian interpretations of Islamic law and its abuses of power.

TAGGED: Syria, Al-Qaeda, Iraq, Fallujah


January 7, 2014
U.S. Won't Ship Iraq Weapons It Needs
Dreazen & Hudson, FP
The stunning conquest of Fallujah and Ramadi by al Qaeda fighters has reignited the debate about whether the White House should have left combat troops in Iraq. But that argument obscures what may be the original sin of the... more ››
January 7, 2014
Drones Could Decide Battle of Fallujah
David Francis, The Fiscal Times
The Iraqi Army is currently trying to wrest control of Fallujah from al-Qaeda-linked militants, and Secretary of State John Kerry has said that American forces would not get involved in the third battle for the city. Both Kerry... more ››
January 7, 2014
The al-Qaedastan Threat
Eli Lake, The Daily Beast
On Monday, Iraqi army forces and other tribal fighters started to encircle the city of Fallujah and, according to some reports from the ground, began shelling al-Qaeda positions inside. The news is reminiscent of the battle of... more ››
January 7, 2014
Iraq's Squandered Opportunity
Max Boot, Commentary
Veterans of the hard fighting in Fallujah in 2004 must be experiencing a sense of déjà vu. Once again masked al-Qaeda fighters are parading through the streets and proclaiming the establishment of a new Islamic ... more ››