„Top Priority“ in Syria: Removing Assad (according to Samantha Power and others)

Samantha Power – US ambassador to the UN – says Assad is the major problem in Syria, because, had it not been for his (barrel) bombing, Jihadists would not come to Syria to fight for ISIS:
http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2015/05/05/samantha_power_assad_must_go_before_isis_problem_can_be_solved.html

This is dishonest nonsense: If the US is concerned about Jihadists operating in Syria it should have put pressure on Turkey to not allow them to use that country as a hub to enter Syria. The same bearded islamist fighters that the US has been killing with drones in Pakistan and Afghanistan have been openly and freely gathering on the Turkish side of the border and moving into Syria without being stopped by Turkish border guards:
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/an-obvious-first-step–close-the-jihadis-highway-9687899.html

Qatar and Saudi Arabia purchased and sent thousands of tonnes of weapons to Syrian rebels as late as 2012:
„The airlift, which began on a small scale in early 2012 and continued intermittently through last fall, expanded into a steady and much heavier flow late last year, the data shows. It has grown to include more than 160 military cargo flights by Jordanian, Saudi and Qatari military-style cargo planes landing at Esenboga Airport near Ankara, and, to a lesser degree, at other Turkish and Jordanian airports.“
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/25/world/middleeast/arms-airlift-to-syrian-rebels-expands-with-cia-aid.html?_r=0

In the same year France violated a UN weapons ban and delivered weapons including heavy weapons (rocket launchers) to the rebels:
http://rt.com/news/256085-hollande-arms-syrian-rebels/

Jihadists would have not been enabled and encouraged to fight without such constant flow of weapons:
„…what the CIA calls a ‘rat line’, a back channel highway into Syria. The rat line, authorised in early 2012, was used to funnel weapons and ammunition from Libya via southern Turkey and across the Syrian border to the opposition. Many of those in Syria who ultimately received the weapons were jihadists, some of them affiliated with al-Qaida…funding came from Turkey, as well as Saudi Arabia and Qatar; the CIA, with the support of MI6, was responsible for getting arms from Gaddafi’s arsenals into Syria.“
http://www.lrb.co.uk/v36/n08/seymour-m-hersh/the-red-line-and-the-rat-line

It was not Assad as „terror magnet“ that brought tens of thousands of international Jihadists to Syria, but Saudi and Qatari money, American, british and French weapons supplies and Turkish/Jordanian facilitations as border countries along with Israels not so covert sabotaging of Syrias military that allowed Jihadists to arm themselves, enter Syria and strengthen due to the weakening of the Syrian army.
The idea that the United States and Israel care for Sunni Arab lives and wellbeing is more than hypocritical, it is bizarre. Israel carries out operations that kill thousands of Palestinian civilians in the course of few weeks and destroy infrastructure worth billions of USD:
„Looking only at the major military operations of the Israeli army in the last 7 years it turns out that some 2700 Palestinian civilians were killed, while only 8 (eight) Israeli civilians were killed.“
https://radioyaran.com/2015/02/27/why-is-iran-called-terror-supporter-but-turkey-not/

The US supports Israel, justifies and legitimizes its actions, delivers the weapons and resupplies the ammunition. Israel has used phosphorus and cluster ammunition against Palestinians. The Palestinian victims of Israels are not labeled „activists“, nor „freedom fighters“. They are not even called resistance fighters or rebels, they are TERRORISTS.
But while Israel treats Palestinian children and minors as „terrorists„, the Israeli government suddenly is full of sympathy with bearded islamist Syrians who are portrayed as righteous men fighting against a dictatorship and for freedom and democracy:
https://radioyaran.com/2015/03/15/israel-admits-helping-al-qaeda-nusra-front-against-syria/
http://217.218.67.233/photo/20150305/f774c5b8-d3d3-4069-bfab-0f7342d421a3.jpg
The rise of sectarian radical islamists in Syria, both syrian and international Jihadists is neither a coincidence nor an „accidental“. It is according to a systematic long term plan to destroy pro-Russian and/or pro-Iranian governments opposed to Israel. The Syrian government brings all the ingredients to draw the wrath of the Americans, the Israelis and the Sunni Gulf states. The Americans and the Israelis – along with their European ever „yes saying“ allies – pretend to be moved by human rights violations, while everyone familiar with the fate of Palestinians since 1948 and that of the Iraqi since 1991 knows that both, the US and Israel, do not care at all for Muslim Arab lives.
The Gulf Arabs hate Assad and the Syrian government because of it´s pro-Iranian character. All allegations of torture and repression raised against Assad are unconvincing, given that the Gulf states as well as Turkey had relations with Syria until 2011 and were regularly meeting Assad. Had Assad agreed to allow the Qatari gas pipeline to go through Syria, the Qataris had not unleashed the Muslim Brotherhood against the Syrian government:
„In 2009 – the same year former French foreign minister Dumas alleges the British began planning operations in Syria – Assad refused to sign a proposed agreement with Qatar that would run a pipeline from the latter’s North field, contiguous with Iran’s South Pars field, through Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and on to Turkey“
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/earth-insight/2013/aug/30/syria-chemical-attack-war-intervention-oil-gas-energy-pipelines

 

Exposing Human Rights Watchs (HRW) pretension of impartiality

There is valid reason to reject the notion of HRWs impartiality.

Take for instance HRWs repeated allegations against the Syrian government. While it is wrong to ignore human rights violations of ANY war party the real question is why HRW chooses to attack and denounce the Syrian army in a time when the latter is fighting the „Islamic State“ and Al Qaeda (like Syrias Al Nusra Front).
Also, If HRW seriously claims to be concerned regarding Syrian lives it should encourage ANY peace talks that would help ending bloodshed. Instead HRW one-sidedly emphasized on the barrel bombs used by the Syrian army even using a picture of Kobanes destruction by the US airforce to highlight the devastation of rebel-held Aleppo by the Syrian airforce:
http://www.moonofalabama.org/2015/02/human-rights-watch-accuses-syria-of-barrel-bomb-damage-created-by-us-attacks.html

In general, HRW trivializes too much:
The Syrian army is – despite being portrayed otherwise by the international mainstream media – not the only party causing civilian deaths. According to the famous Aleppo blogger Edward Dark who criticizes both the government and the opposition the rebels shelling of Aleppo alone has killed in excess of 2800 civilians:
https://twitter.com/edwardedark/status/580044825426292736?s=09
The blogger even said in the end of February (2015) that „the rebels have killed more civilians than the regime“ in Aleppo:
https://twitter.com/edwardedark/status/571287191575506944

HRW was also quick (and totally wrong) in accusing the Syrian army of having used chemical weapons in the infamous Eastern Ghouta (Damascus) attacks of 2013. HRW, certainly no experts in missile technology and ballistics erroneously claimed that the rockets hitting different locations around Damascus were both fired from the same Syrian army mountain top. This claim was refuted:
http://whoghouta.blogspot.de/2013/11/the-conclusion.html

To understand that HRW IS indeed biased and pursuing an agenda it is good to know who HRWs „Executive Director“ Kenneth Roth is. Ken Roth is at the same time part of the leadership of the „Council on Foreign Relations“ (CFR), an American think tank that – despite using a subtle pattern – has been defending wars and offensive military action under the pretext of defending human rights, fighting terror or the much quoted „responsibility to protect“ (R2P):
http://www.cfr.org/staff/b654
http://www.cfr.org/syria/r2p-crisis-following-un-syria-vote/p27303
http://www.lobelog.com/cfr-liberals-again-pushing-for-another-middle-east-war/

While it is true that HRW occasionally criticizes the US and Israel, this is merely to keep up the appearance of neutrality as such criticism is not intended to have the slightest negative consequences for those countries in particular or any pro western Nato or EU country in general. Noone is willing or able to impose sanctions on Israel or the US, let alone wage any war or „humanitarian intervention“ against those countries. Policies such as „responsibility to protect“ (R2P) have no external expression in case of western or pro-western countries. They will for instance never be applied against Saudi Arabia, no matter how much death and damage Saudi Arabias totally unjustified offensive war against the people of Yemen will cause.

 

Update: Israel admits helping Al Qaeda (Nusra Front) against Syria

Truth is out and IT´S OFFICIAL: The „Jerusalem Post“ openly and finally admits:
„Israel has opened its borders with Syria in order to provide medical treatment to Nusra Front and al-Qaida fighters wounded in the ongoing civil war, according to The Wall Street Journal.“
Thank you, so it´s no longer a „conspiracy theory of Assad supporters“:
http://www.jpost.com/Middle-East/Report-Israel-treating-al-Qaida-fighters-wounded-in-Syria-civil-war-393862

Update April 26th, 2015:
„Since the Nusra Front took over a key checkpoint in the Golan in the summer, it has not gone unnoticed by Arabs that Nusra has completely avoided attacking Israeli military targets in the region. The Qunaitra crossing stands between the Israeli-occupied and the Syrian-controlled sectors of the Golan – Nusra has held it since August.

UN peacekeepers have observed regular contacts between Nusra forces in the area and the Israeli troops stationed on the other side of the ceasefire line (Israel has illegally occupied part of the Golan since 1967). They also observed cargo of an unknown nature passing between the two sides from the Israelis.

More recently, when an army spokesperson talking to the Wall Street Journal confirmed Israel’s aid to al-Qaeda, it was shown that it also took the form of treating Nusra fighters in Israeli field hospitals near the ceasefire line and then sending them back to fight against the government of Syria. (Some defenders of Israel have claimed this is no different from how it supposedly treats any enemy fighter in its hospitals. But there is a crucial difference: fighters from Hamas or Hizballah captured by Israel would be sent straight to jail after hospital discharge.)“
http://richardedmondson.net/2015/04/16/the-unveiling-of-israels-hidden-alliance-with-al-qaeda-in-syria/

Update 2, April 27th, 2015:
„Israel has arrested a Syrian Druze man who documented contact between Israel and al-Nusra Front.“
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/04/curious-case-israel-al-nusra-facebook-spy-150420082913157.html

Why the Nusra Front is „moderate“ and Assad is the „magnet of terrorism“

It seems that creativity with regards to twisting facts and changing definitions beyond recognition is a key strength of rightwing american think tanks and neoconservative policy makers.

A „moderate“ muslim is normally supposed to be a liberal, secular, non-sectarian and non-violent muslim. None of this applies to Syrias Al Nusra Front, IS or any of the many Salafi Islamists fighting against the Syrian government and for the establishment of an „islamic state“, „emirate“ or otherwise Sharia based government.
Yet, James Clapper, the „Director of National Intelligence“ has now simply decided to redefine „moderate“:
„Moderate these days is increasingly becoming anyone who is not affiliated with ISIL“¹

So, Al Nusra, a vehemently sectarian Jihadi faction that mass executes disarmed prisoners and beheads captives could suddenly be considered „moderate“, because the group is fighting ISIL (or IS) as well. Al Nusra, by the way, also executes women, e.g. for the „crime“ of adultery:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/01/14/us-mideast-crisis-syria-qaeda-idUSKBN0KN16520150114

Maybe, someone should inform Mr. Clapper that the Syrian Army and it´s allies, the National Defense Forces and the Lebanese Hezbollah are fighting IS as well. Probably these forces are the ones that have inflicted the heaviest casualties on IS and themselves suffered the highest casualties as well. A major battle ground has been and is the province of Raqqa and now increasingly Deir al Zour. The Syrian Army fights IS also in Qalamoun and on the Syrian-Lebanese border, where – listen Mr. Clapper – IS and al Nusra have been cooperating and coordinating operations for a long time.

Now, Qatar, which is an „Arab partner“ openly admits that it is supporting the same al Nusra that has been designated a terrorist group by the US state department:
„A source close to the foreign ministry confirmed that Qatar wanted Nusra to become a purely Syrian force not linked to al Qaeda. „They are promising Nusra more support, i.e. money, supplies etc, once they let go of the Qaeda ties,“ the official said.„²
Now, how is this possible that Qatar is not punished by sanctions for supporting a terrorist group?

Now, back to James Clapper, who uttered the following nonsense:
„at some point Assad has got to go because, as, particularly many in Europe feel, that the magnet for all this extremism that has found its way to Syria is because of him.“¹

What? So, Assad, whose country is ravaged by a civil war in which his mostly sectarian opponents have been receiving fighters, money, arms and other supplies from Nato member Turkey and the Gulf States and whose armed forces have suffered the highest casualties is the „magnet for all extremism“??? Did Assad invite Libyan, Saudi, Kuwaiti, Tunisian, Moroccan, Chechen…Filipino, Australian, Belgian, German, French…Jihadists to suicide bomb Syrians, both soldiers and civilians?
Would Mr. Clapper or any other genius behind such brainless phrases all Netanyahu the „magnet“ for Palestinian terrorism? How about calling American presidents „magnets“ for 9/11?

¹ http://www.cfr.org/intelligence/kenneth-moskow-memorial-lecture-homeland-security-counterterrorism-james-r-clapper-jr/p36210
² http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/03/04/us-mideast-crisis-nusra-insight-idUSKBN0M00GE20150304

 

 

Netanyahus nonsensical speech to the US Congress

„In a speech to US Congress punctuated by standing ovations, Benjamin Netanyahu depicted Iran as a „threat to the entire world“.“
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-31716684

Raising claims and making the wildest accusations is easy, but on what grounds does Netanyahu want to substantiate his claim or even prove it?
Unlike Israel, Iran…
– has not attacked any country for 200 years
– does not occupy foreign territory
– has no nuclear weapons

Yes, it´s true: Iran has no nuclear weapons and there are not even indications that Iran plans to build a bomb. This is not a mere claim by „naive“ people who turn a blind eye on obvious truths but an assertion based on solid facts provided by the best people qualified to judge the situation and make statements: The „National Intelligence Estimate“ (NIE), the creme de la creme of the American intelligence community:

„Recent assessments by American spy agencies are broadly consistent with a 2007 intelligence finding that concluded that Iran had abandoned its nuclear weapons program years earlier, according to current and former American officials. The officials said that assessment was largely reaffirmed in a 2010 National Intelligence Estimate, and that it remains the consensus view of America’s 16 intelligence agencies. “
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/25/world/middleeast/us-agencies-see-no-move-by-iran-to-build-a-bomb.html?_r=0

„“This deal doesn’t block Iran’s path to the bomb, it paves Iran’s path to the bomb,“ Mr Netanyahu said, claiming Iran could have 100 nuclear bombs within five years.“
Well, why should one still trust Netanyahu?
First of all, he has been giving the same warnings for two decades now, even in the time when he was the leader of the opposition to former Premier Minister Rabin in the mid 90s.
„According to various Israeli government predictions over the years, Iran was going to have a bomb by the mid-90s — or 1998, 1999, 2000, 2004, 2005, and finally 2010. More recent Israeli predictions have put that date at 2011 or 2014.“
http://www.salon.com/2010/12/05/israeli_predictions_iranian_nukes/

Also: „Netanyahu in 1992: Iran close to having nuclear bomb
Imminent Iran nuclear threat? A timeline of warnings since 1979.

Second, Israels own secret service Mossad is contradicting Netanyahu:
„…the Mossad memo…dated October 22, 2012…contradicted the Israeli leader’s U.N. speech on several critical points of fact, including how far away Iran was from bomb-making capacity and whether it even had the ability to produce weapons-grade uranium.“
http://forward.com/articles/215562/benjamin-netanyahu-s-iran-exaggerations-now-clea/?utm_content=DailyNewsletter_TopArea_Position-2_Headline&utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_term=Weekly%20%2B%20Daily&utm_campaign=Weekly_Newsletter_Friday%202015-02-27

Third, his most recent lie angered the US state department:
„The state department later complained about Mr Netanyahu’s claim that Mr Kerry had „confirmed last week that Iran might legitimately possess“ 190,000 centrifuges enriching uranium by the end of any deal and would be „weeks away“ from an „arsenal of nuclear weapons“.

The state department said: „That’s not what Kerry said. He [said]: ‚If you have a civilian power plant that’s producing power legitimately and not a threat to proliferation, you could have as many as 190,000.““
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-31722493

Apparently many high ranking members of Israels military and intelligence community do not share Netanyahus paranoic concerns:
„Iran doesn’t pose an “existential threat” to Israel, as stated by Mossad director Tamir Pardo in a December 2011 speech and repeated since then by former IDF chief Dan Halutz and former Mossad director Efraim Halevy.“
In his speech Netanyahu plunges into the history of antiquity to prove a supposed and ongoing Persian hostility towards Jews by referring to the story of Esther:
„We’ll read of a powerful Persian viceroy named Haman, who plotted to destroy the Jewish people some 2,500 years ago. But a courageous Jewish woman, Queen Esther, exposed the plot and gave for the Jewish people the right to defend themselves against their enemies.“

Netanyahus twisting of the story is brazen beyond imagination:
1. If Persians hated Jews why and how was Esther a „queen“ in the Persian (Achaemenid) empire?
2. Esther, a single Jewish woman was not in a position to save the Jews. It was in fact the Persian emperor Xerxes who had the power to disempower Haman and leave the Jews unharmed.
3. Cyrus, the Great, Xerxes grand father and founder of the Persian dynasty rescued the Jews from the babylonian captivity. The story is even included in the Bible.
4. Above all, from a historical point of view the story seems to be an invention as outlined here: http://www.lobelog.com/purim-when-bad-history-makes-bad-policy/

Netanyahu laments that Americans have been killed through Iranian proxies in Lebanon and Iraq, but:
– The last time lebanese Hezbollah harmed any Americans was in the 1980s and it happened in Lebanon. Hezbollah did not attack the US elsewhere, let alone in America
– Iran has not killed any Americans in the last 30+ years. Even the hostages were all released unharmed in 1981
– Israel has indeed killed Americans
http://whatreallyhappened.com/WRHARTICLES/ussliberty.html
http://www.veteranstoday.com/2012/06/07/alan-hart-israels-attack-on-the-uss-liberty-the-full-story/
– Many American soldiers died in Iraq and Afghanistan but Iran did not attack them there and Iran did not „recommend“ the US to attack those countries. It was Israel, to be more precise it was Netanyahu:
http://www.timesofisrael.com/kerry-accuses-netanyahu-of-cheerleading-2003-iraq-war/
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/26/world/middleeast/kerry-reminds-congress-netanyahu-advised-us-to-invade-iraq.html

Netanyahu says that Iran is hardly any different than IS(IS) and tries to portray the Assad government, Hezbollah, the Iraqi Shia militias and the Yemeni Houthis as the equivalents of IS, but as a matter of fact:
– Syrias army, Hezbollah and the Iraqi Shia militias have been fighting IS and Al Qaeda (Syrias Al Nusra Front) for years. They have killed much more radical Islamists in their real and true „war on terror“ than the US has done through airstrikes
– Israel has not attacked any of these Jihadi terrorists, but has shot down Syrian war planes, shelled the Syrian armys bases and given cover to the Islamists in their fight against the Syrian state
– The Houthis are fighting Al Qaeda in Yemen. The same Al Qaeda that the US occasionally bombs there, too. The Houthis have not beheaded, crucified or mass executed hundreds of disarmed prisoners. Nor have they enslaved women and children from minorities

Netanyahu said that Irans religious leader Khamenei has „twittered“ for Israels elimination. While this is true, one must read carefully. Khamenei does NOT say that Jews or the Israeli population must be exterminated, nor that the country must be destroyed physically. What he is calling for is the removal of the Israeli state as the „institution“ governing the geographical territory of pre-1948 Palestine. Khamenei explicitly says:
„the elimination of Israel does not mean the massacre of jewish people“. He even considers Jews inside Israel and abroad as people taking part in a future referendum about the succeeding state:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/irans-supreme-leader-ayatollah-khamenei-outlines-plan-to-eliminate-israel-9850472.html
„Elimination“ surely sounds tough but it´s not different than the often requested Israeli desires for „regime change“ in Iran through military means.

It might be useful to know a couple of things about Jews in Iran. After all, according to Netanyahu Iran wants to exterminate Jews. Look at this:
1. List of Synagogues in Tehran alone: https://twitter.com/GrantBrooke/status/572798502943784960/photo/1
2. Jews in todays Islamic Republic of Iran: http://theotheriran.com/tag/jews/    (Does not look like they are fearing pogroms, what?)
You won´t see Jewish Synagogues vandalized in Iran or Jewish cemeteries desecrated. Unlike Europe, by the way.

Syrias Nusra Front, IS and Israel

Is this a coincidence? Right at a time when there were rumours that Moscow is leading an initiative to bring the Syrian government and the opposition together for talks, as usual the latter downplayed the Russian approach and started the well-known tactics of sabotaging talks by raising demands that no government will accept.
So, what happened that the opposition which few weeks ago had signalled to be more cooperative in the upcoming Moscow talks suddenly backed off?
Very probably the US along with the Persian Gulf based Arab backers of the Syrian opposition and rebels „intervened“ and made clear that there is no room for any talks that could help stop the Syrian war with Bashar al Assad remaining in power.

So, today the BBC reports that the US is going to increase the training of „moderate“ Syrian rebels:
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-30847689

Officially this training is supposed to enable the rebels to fight the „Islamic State“ (IS), but anyone who has followed the Syrian war knows well that the so called „moderates“ or „vetted“ rebels have more than once either joined IS (or the Nusra Front) or sold/handed over their sophisticated american-built and Saudi/Qatari provided weapons to them. In yet other cases they have closely cooperated with the Nusra to the extent that were it not for the latters devastating suicide bombing attacks against Syrian army installations much of the rebels successes would have not occured.

Just recently 3000 fighters of the supposedly „moderate“ Free Syrian Army (FSA) joined IS:
http://www.almasdarnews.com/article/3000-fsa-fighters-defect-isis-qalamoun-mountains/

The above mentioned BBC article is additionally remarkable with regards to openly admitting that the CIA has been training Syrian rebels under a „covert programme“ in Jordan since March 2013. What kind of popular, domestic „revolution“ is this that needs to be helped by CIA? Since when has the CIA brought anything good for Arabs and Muslims?

Western and Arab sources, which are mostly hostile towards the Syrian government continue to uphold the fairy tale that the so called „Southern front“ rebel groups are a major and succesful element in the Syrian war, which is free of sectarian Salafi radicals. To the disappointment of the supporters of the „moderate rebel“ theory, almost all of the relevant military actions in Syrias south which ended with a rebel victory were spearheaded and masterminded by the Al Nusra Front.
At the same time more reports are emerging that clearly highlight and emphasize the crucial and „game changing“ role Israel has played as the (often not so) hidden „patron saint“ of the islamist radicals:
http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2015/01/syria-opposition-daraa-israel-communication-nusra.html

„Communications increased between rebels and the Israeli army before the eruption of the southern front in Daraa and Quneitra in September, according to Quneitra opposition activist Mohammad Qasim, a pseudonym due to the sensitivity of the subject.“

„The battle to capture Quneitra on Sept. 27 was preceded by coordination and communications between Abu Dardaa, a leader of Jabhat al-Nusra, and the Israeli army to pave the way for the attack. And according to an FSA commander who partly participated in this battle, the Israeli army provided Abu Dardaa with maps of the border area and the Syrian army’s strategic posts in the southern area.“

„During the clashes, the Israelis heavily bombarded many of the regime’s posts, shot down a warplane that was trying to impede the progress of the fighters and targeted other aircraft.“

What kind of „revolution“ for reforms and democracy is this that is fought by Salafi Jihadists from several countries and supported by Israel?

 

 

 

Al Qaeda rebels and the „Southern Front“ in Syria

Parts of western and arab press on the one hand and spokespersons of Syrias insurgents on the other hand try to portray the so called „Southern Front“ as the one major „moderate“ faction fighting to topple the Syrian government. They emphasize that this front line which is the only one to witness relevant successes and territorial gains  hardly hosts any al Qaeda or otherwise sectarian militants.

Interestingly though, whenever major attacks on Syrian army positions is under way, the al Nusra is not far:
„Another Syrian province looks set to fall out of Assad government control soon, with al-Qaeda’s Jabhat al-Nusra sending some 2,000 fighters against Ba’ath City and Khan Arnaba, the last towns they yet control in Quneitra Province.“
http://news.antiwar.com/2014/11/20/al-qaeda-attacks-last-syrian-govt-town-along-israeli-frontier/

But al Nusra, which is considered Syrias al Qaeda branch is not the only radical islamist (Salafi) group fighting for the „Southern Front“:
„Al-Qaeda’s Nusra Front and other Islamist brigades and rebels fighting under the umbrella of the Western-backed Free Syrian Army, who the US and other allies want to arm and train, currently have “the upper hand in the area,” Abu Yahya al-Anari, a militant from the Ahrar al-Sham rebel group, said.“
http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/assad-says-isis-not-out-thin-air-israel-continues-treat-syria-rebels

So far the western mainstream news coverage has successfully covered up the role of Israel, but several reports leaked about Israel shooting down Syrian planes, bombing Syrian bases and military equipment and treating wounded rebels.