In a new video posted online, Nusra Front militants announced the formation of a 'Jaish al-Fateh' branch in the Qalamoun region. Jaish al-Fateh (Army of Conquest) is the same rebel alliance which has scored numerous victories in recent weeks against the Assad regime in northern Syria's Idlib Province.
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Few issues require as urgent attention as America's ISIS strategy. America's multi-year strategy against ISIS lies on the cusp of collapse. The Obama Administration needs to understand that its train-and-equip program is simply too piecemeal and too slow. To remain viable, moderate Syrian rebels need weapons now.
President Obama is no less committed to military action than any of his predecessors. He might personally have a less gung-ho disposition than, say, George W. Bush. But Obama's personality is only a small part of the equation. Despite the putative end of the Cold War, the United States has remained on a war footing. The national security apparatus is programed for intervention. What we see now taking place in the skies above Syria and Iraq is not an exception to the Obama-as-pacifist rule. It is a summation of a particular evolution in U.S. militarism toward the asymmetrical warfare of dispensing death at a distance.
While the world's attention has been focused on the combined efforts of Arab and U.S. forces attacking the Islamic State positions in Iraq and Syria, there is unfolding in Lebanon, a third front in the war against this violent extremist group. The threat of IS poses an existential challenge that must not be ignored.
U.S. air strikes continue against the terrorists of the so-called "Islamic State" -- formerly the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" or ISIS -- in the borderlands of Iraqi Kurdistan. American military action has been impelled by the genocidal ISIS threat to Christians and various small Kurdish and other religious minorities.
Syrian opposition forces have won a number of significant military victories in Idlib governorate in recent days. Practically speaking, this string of victories will advance a long-term opposition military strategy aimed at posing an increased threat to the government's control of Idlib city and Hama governorate.