Friday, September 25, 2015

US-produced Syrian rebels in Syria: whatever happened to them?

"Earlier in the conflict, Abu Zayed was a member of another US-backed rebel group known as Hazm, which was crushed late last year by the Nusra Front in a battle in Idlib province, in northern Syria.
The US-trained rebels face significant challenges – from minuscule numbers in a war that has a myriad of competing armies, to social media postings that have described them as “dogs of America” and a media campaign that has tainted the group’s name even before they returned to Syria. Other rebels have derided them for agreeing to focus their fight on Isis, away from the Syrian president, Bashar Assad, whom they consider the main target of their rebellion.
The head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdurrahman, said the US-trained rebels are so few and so ill-equipped that they have not shown to be relevant.
“So far, they have made no impact on the ground,” he said. “If they [Americans] want to train some, they must first train them on human rights issues and democracy before military training.”"