It is such a typical spin of Western media. They don't know that Saudi regime media have been peddling such stories about "leading (yet unnamed) Alawites" from the very beginning of the conflict. BBC reporter on religion is unaware that Saudi regime often pays a handful of Shi`ites in Lebanon and make them issue a statement in which they say that "Shi`ites of Lebanon" are opposed to Hizbullah and sympathetic to the anti-Shi`ite sectarian government of Saudi Arabia. I am not kidding you. But Michael Kerr believes that sectarianism was introduced to Syria by the Asad regime and that Syrian Jihadi groups and their Gulf sponsors are strict French revolution-style secularists. 1) it is interesting that those leading Alawites are not named. 2) it is more interesting that Alawites would want to claim that they are not Shi`ites when the Alawite community lobbied for years and decades to be categorized as a Shi`ite sect. And here Kerr says; "Of the document itself, he says: "It is very significant that Alawi community leaders have stressed that they are not a branch of Shia Islam but a separate Muslim religious community that is of and within Islam." Is this like the Hugh Trevor Roper "authenticating" for the Times Hitler's diaries? Pretty much.