Showing posts with label Nusra. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Nusra. Show all posts

Monday, February 13, 2023

How and why do US-Trained Afghan Troops, ISIS, and Syrian Rebels end up Fighting on either side in Ukraine?

    Monday, February 13, 2023   No comments

In the 1970s and 80s, the US and Saudi Arabia worked together to radicalize, train, and equip fighters in Afghanistan with the hope that these fighters who combine a sectarian zeal and military skill will bring down the Soviet Union. The religious sectarian zeal empowered these fighters to attack the US on September 11, 2001.

Ten years later, in 2011, the US, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia trained and supplied fighters who were trained or inspired by the Afghan rebels to bring down the Syrian government. Russia stepped in in 2015 and reversed the gains made by al-Qaeda and ISIL troops.

Since 2002, the US military and intelligence started to train and arm an elite force in Afghanistan, some 30,000 fighters. Twenty years later, the US pulled out of Afghanistan and left that country in the hands of Taliban, the same government the US dislodged in 2002. Most of these elite Afghani troops were left behind. We are now learning that many of them, about 2/3 of them, are recruited to fight with Russia in Ukraine, the country that has received nearly $100 billion in aid and military equipment to help it fight the Russians.

 Over the twenty years since it invaded Afghanistan in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, the United States has built, equipped, and trained the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces. In order to enable these forces to fight the Taliban, which allied with al-Qaeda at the time, Washington spent nearly 90 billion dollars, until there were between 20-30 thousand Afghan special forces as a military elite that the Afghan government was proud of being trained by the Navy Special Forces. American, known as "SEAL", British Air Force Special Forces.

And with the start of implementing its decision to withdraw from Afghanistan in August 2021, Washington tried to transfer these soldiers and officers out of the country on the grounds that they were at risk from the Taliban movement, which took over the reins of government. For this, the United States established a huge air bridge, which was described as the largest operation of its kind in the history of the United States, and through which Washington was able to evacuate about 130,000 Afghans and foreigners from the country. However, the US airlift only transferred a few hundred senior Afghan Special Forces officers, leaving the bulk of them face to face with the advancing Taliban. About 1,000 Afghan special forces were evacuated to the United States, while a few others managed to reach Europe and Turkey, while about 20,000 of them were left behind inside Afghanistan.

Soon, these people changed their loyalties, and some of them fought in the ranks of the opposition groups, such as the National Resistance Front, the anti-Taliban political and military alliance led by Ahmed Shah Massoud, and took the Panjshir Valley as a center for its operations, and even a few of them resorted to fighting in the ranks of the Islamic State in Khorasan Province, While a large number of them fled to neighboring countries, especially Iran and Pakistan, where they are awaiting asylum in a Western country due to their previous close ties to the US alliance.

With thousands of former Afghan soldiers and officers flocking to Iran, many American fears have been raised about transferring their unique knowledge of US army tactics and training to its arch-rival Iran, which poses a major security threat to the United States. It is easy for them to transfer their institutional knowledge of the US military, including the mechanics of collecting sensitive intelligence information, to Iran or other enemies of the United States if they communicate with them. And as stated in a report by Representative Michael McCaul, a Republican member of the Foreign Affairs Committee in the US Congress, the catastrophe of evacuating Afghans a year and a half ago endangered US intelligence assets, including the Afghan special forces, as “(they) could pose a threat to US security.” If they are coerced or recruited to work with one of Washington's adversaries, including international terrorist groups such as the Islamic State (in Khorasan) or countries such as China, Russia and Iran."

Events quickly proved that the fears of American officials were correct, as it began to become clear in the past few months that the Afghan Special Forces, which previously carried out advanced raids against the Taliban and bore the brunt of the American war on the Islamic movement, some of its men moved to fight on the side of Russia, the enemy. The arch-enemy of the Americans and the West as a whole these days, after hundreds of them received generous offers that included guaranteeing a safe life for them and their families, as well as obtaining Russian citizenship.

These efforts were led by the "Wagner" special combat group close to the Kremlin and made up of mercenaries fighting for Russia, which plays a prominent role in the war against Ukraine. Moscow hopes to draw on the experiences of former Afghan officers, after the battles over the past year showed that the Russian officers did not perform well on the battlefield against the Western-backed Ukrainian resistance. Media sources have confirmed that about a third of the former Afghan Special Forces are already fighting for Russia.

Meanwhile, as reported previously, ISIS fighters have relocted from Syria and Iraq to fight on the side of US supported Ukrainian forces. Recent Associated Press reporting (see AP Photos, below) depicted ISIS Black patches on the unforms of Ukrainian fighters.


Sunday, January 15, 2023

Chechens and Caucasus, Albanians and Uzbeks are moving to Idlib to fight in Ukraine

    Sunday, January 15, 2023   No comments

Intersectional reports indicate that foreign fighters from extremist groups have begun to migrate from Idlib in northern Syria towards Ukraine to fight the Russian army there, and reports say that most of those who move to eastern Europe are Chechen and Caucasian battalion fighters, Uzbek and Tajik fighters, and a group of Albanian fighters, and the vast majority belong to These fighters belong to the ranks of “Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham,” which was formerly “Al-Nusra Front,” linked to Al-Qaeda and led by “Abu Muhammad al-Julani.”

Accounts of activists in the areas controlled by extremist groups in northern Syria speak of the departure of dozens of foreign fighters since the beginning of this year. These fighters, according to the details of the battles in the past years in Syria, are considered the most ferocious and experienced in martial arts and street warfare.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says that more than 170 people have left the Syrian territory in batches since last October, and all of them are from the Caucasus and Chechens. They headed towards a European country based on pressure and a request by Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham.

It is not known until now the mechanism for the transfer of dangerous fighters, who are classified as terrorists by the countries of the world, from Idlib in northern Syria to eastern Europe, and whether American or Western intelligence agencies are working to involve these fighters in the war against the Russian forces in an organized manner, and to repeat the model of the war in Afghanistan during the occupation Soviet. Where the American intelligence formed Al-Qaeda in partnership with Saudi and Pakistani intelligence to defeat the Soviets in Afghanistan, and after this was achieved, the states sought to eliminate the organization by launching direct attribution to the occupation of the country, and pursuing Al-Qaeda fighters, and it is also unknown whether these groups were fighting under the command of the Ukrainian army or in coordination with NATO. Their peers have already fought in Libya under the command of NATO.

The dissident Salafist from Tahrir al-Sham, Ali al-Arjani, said on Telegram, “The Caucasus and Albanian group leave Idlib for Ukraine, because they found that Ukraine is more free for them than Idlib, and the battles in it are real, and it seems that they are following the old fatwa of Ayman Haroush, that going out to the country of the infidels is better.” From sitting in Idlib under the authority of Abu Muhammad al-Julani.” A video recording was published showing Abdul Hakim al-Shishani (Rustam Azif), the leader of the Caucasus Soldiers group, and his group fighting against Russian forces in the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, and Russian media published the video recording, indicating that the United States had begun using terrorist groups to support the Ukrainian army.

A state of disagreements prevailed between some of these groups, which are based on foreign fighters, and between Hayat Tahrir al-Sham and its leader al-Julani in northern Syria, as al-Julani tried to domesticate and control these groups in the context of the changes that occurred in al-Julani's approach in an attempt to enter the political space and satisfy Turkey on the one hand and flirt with the United States On the other hand, to ensure the consolidation of his control over Idlib and some of the northern Syrian countryside.


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