Rebels Warn: Al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front May Take Syria’s South

Group Making Major Gains Around Jordan Border

Officials with the Free Syrian Army (FSA), one of the US-subsidized moderate rebel factions, warn that al-Qaeda faction Jabhat al-Nusra is gaining major ground in the area around the southern city of Deraa.

The Nusra Front has been directly challenging the FSA in Deraa, along the Jordanian border, capturing an FSA commander who has since confessed to deliberately throwing a battle over a nearby town to the Assad government to prevent Nusra from keeping it.

The FSA, of course, sees an easy solution in having the US give them even more money and better weapons to fight Nusra, though since they continue to lose ground to pretty much every other rebel faction the gravy train may be drying up.

The dominant rebel faction early in the civil war, the FSA has since been supplanted by myriad Islamist factions. Western nations looking to get in on the war have been courting groups like the Islamic Front as more likely proxies in recent days, reflecting their view that Islamist groups that are at the very least not formally al-Qaeda backed are the closest they can get to “usable” allies.

Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.