New Report on the Jihadist Network in Syria


A new report on Syria has been released by Qulliam, a counter-extremism think tank that seeks to “address the unique challenges of citizenship, identity, and belonging in a globalized world.” The report, titled “The Jihadist Network in the Syrian Revolution: A Strategic Briefing,” highlights Syrian rebel fighters and the jihadist network operating in Syria.

As the conflict deepens, and as policymakers debate US involvement in Syria, two important questions are being asked: who are the Syrian rebel fighters, and to what extent are the jihadists involved?

According to the report, “Syrian rebel fighters fall into three main categories: 1) local groups of fighters such as the Kurds who are fighting to fulfill the Kurdish aspirations in Syria; 2) patriots who are represented mainly by the Free Syrian Army (FSA), and 3) the jihadists. The vast majority of the opposition fighters are legitimate nationalists fighting for the country’s freedom and the establishment of a democratic state, including the Kurds who control many towns along the country’s northern border with Turkey. Several reports have indicated that most members within the FSA are pious rather than Islamists and are not motivated by sectarianism, but as the Syrian conflict becomes more violent, there remains a possibility of increased radicalization among fighters and the potential for a civil war based on ethnic lines.”

The report includes the following sections:
-Aims and Objectives
-Strategies and Tactics
-What Lies Ahead

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