Thursday, December 12, 2013

'Not a Crosswalk' by Michael Yon - captivating read

by Michael Yon image007
09 December 2013

The Syrian war is growing.  Growing in size and complexity.

Yet the more one learns about this conflict, the less accurate it becomes to call it “The Syrian War.”  Thousands of foreigners have flooded in.  Some are moving through southern Turkey today.  Just this weekend Jihadist hardliners seized yet another town on the Turkish border, ten minutes drive from a Turkish town.  Barbarians are at the gate, and the gate is wide open.

As these words are written, foreigners are fighting inside and creating international contacts that will transcend this place and time.
Jihad is being crowd sourced.  Tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of dollars, are being raised from private sources.  See, “Inside Kuwait’s Kickstarter campaigns to fund Syrian Jihadists'.
Some of the young fighters I have spoken with express fondness for al Qaeda in the sense that people flocked to Che Guevara.  They are mindlessly drawn to a picture and a caption without context.

Others are fond of the terrorist organization Jabhat al-Nusra, or the more moderate Free Syrian Army (FSA), or one of countless obscure groups whose names mean little to anyone other than people involved, or analysts.

The Christian who made the photo above said that since March 2013, the Assad regime has controlled the left side, while the FSA and ISIS (al Qaeda linked) control the right.  And so FSA and ISIS fight each other on the right, and both fight the regime on the left.  The war is a perfect mess.

Iraq veterans from about 2005 to 2007 may recall the many teenaged boys recruited by al Qaeda.  AQ would arm the boys, pay them a little, provide a reason to be, and a mission from the skies.  Many boys become terrorists because they have nothing better to do.  Terror groups become their families and identities.

Gangs of teenaged al Qaeda fighters answered only to men who were willing to kill them.  In Syria, young men are growing up today in an environment where they know only war...Continue reading...

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