The US, now underlines the distinction between ‘radical’ and ‘moderate’ groups. This contentious distinction enables armament of the groups which are assumed to be ‘moderate’ by the US lest the ‘radicals’ gain power and even legitimization of the more direct interventions.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the US, John Kerry, had stated that the radical groups in Syria constitute only a percentage of only between 15% and 25%, while trying to convince the Congress members to a direct intervention in Syria. After Kerry’s ‘bad boys’ description, Turkey adopted a similar discourse and the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, Ahmet Davutoğlu, started to condemn the radical groups. According to Davutoğlu, the groups that harm the ‘revolution’ in Syria don’t represent the whole of the Syria opposition and there exists even a ‘moderate opposition’ which is against the wild murders.
Who are these bad boys?
The field reality is in contradiction with the prevalent discourse of the US and her allies. However, almost all of the armed groups in Syria believe that they make jihad against “the heretic Alevi Regime”. Among the armed groups Salafist mentality, which considers all other Islamic sects other than theirs as ‘heretic’, is prevalent. Until now, there were no groups which declared that they would conserve the secular structure of Syria and be equidistant to all religions after Bashar Assad’s rule. Moreover, the rulers of the group which calls itself the Free Syrian Army (FSA), in other words, the ‘Higher Military Council’ founded for the coordination of the ‘good boys’ of the US on December 2012 in Antalya by the encouragement of the US, often employ a discourse of sectarianism and they even call for massacres. Abdul-Hamid Zakaria, one of the spokesmen of the FSA, who went live from Istanbul on the TV channel Al-Arabia after the Syrian army had seized the control of Al-Qusayr District of the Homs Governorate on June, is one of these. Zakaria had said that they would clean Alevis and Shiites from Syria in his
statement. Many brigades under the umbrella of FSA did not hesitate to act in coordination with the al-Qaida related Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) when the immense wave of attacks against the Kurdish villages and to the Alevis in Latakia was started in the summer 2013.
In a similar way, the ‘Liberation Operation’ to Damascus was a common operation led by the other al-Qaida related organization, the al-Nusra Front, and the Islam Brigade, which is considered to be ‘moderate’
The Sharia Coalition
In order to clarify the discussion, the structure of the FSA must be analyzed. In the West media, it is often uttered that this group is under the control of a former Syrian army member named Salim Idris. Idris had passed the border of Turkey during the Latakia attack in which 123 Alevi civilians were massacred and praised the militia there. Besides, Idris had undertaken the transfer of antitank weapons and ammunition through Turkey for this attack. The groups in Syria might declare their commitments to the HMC under the leadership of Salim Idris in order to benefit from the weapons flow financed by the Saudi Arabia and organized by the CIA. Nevertheless, every group acts according to the word of its local leader. For instance, while the attacks against the Kurdish villages were continuing, when Idris criticized the FSA groups which act with the ISIL, Abdulcabbar al-Ukeydi, the Aleppo representative of the HMA and the leader of the one of the largest FSA groups al-Tawhid Brigade, had stated that they did not recognize Idris.
The facts on the field came forward with the formation of the coalition of the groups whose majority constitutes the core elements of the FSA, with al-Nusra Front and the radical Ahrar-us Damascus Brigade, last week. The groups which declared that they did not recognize the authority of the Syrian National Council (SNA), stated that they would fight for Sharia.