[Marxism] Fwd: Jaish al-Sham: An Ahrar al-Sham Offshoot or Something More? - Syria in Crisis - Carnegie Endowment for International Peace

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sat Oct 17 13:21:50 MDT 2015

By the always astute Aron Lund:

Jaish al-Sham’s first political messages were unabashedly Syrian and 
revolutionary-populist in a way that Ahrar al-Sham has never quite 
managed, despite its post-2014 moderation. Jaish al-Sham says it exists 
to wage a two-front war against Assad and the Islamic State, epitomized 
in its slogan: “a revolution against tyrants and extremists.” It 
stresses that its members are all native Syrians and that they are 
fighting for Syria, as opposed to being foreign fighters with a global 
jihadi project.

Though the Islamist character of the group is obvious, Bazerbashi says 
Jaish al-Sham was founded in order to return to the original sentiments 
of the revolution, namely “the Syrian people’s aspirations for freedom 
and dignity,” and that its founders will seek to avoid “narrow 
ideologization or partisanship.” A few weeks ago, he told me the 
still-forthcoming group would be “a new Syrian popular revolutionary 
army where all will participate to liberate Syria from tyrants and 
extremists, whether it be the regime or the sectarian militias or the so 
called Islamic State. It aims to overthrow the regime and liberate 
Syrian soil, to keep it united and free and to safeguard its people’s 
dignity and freedom without exceptions.”

One noticeable difference is the group’s use of the Syrian independence 
flag. This three-star tricolor has become a widely recognized symbol of 
the uprising against Bashar al-Assad, but it remains taboo for al-Qaeda 
style groups and other Islamist hardliners due to its 
nationalist-democratic connotation.

full: http://carnegieendowment.org/syriaincrisis/?fa=61643

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