Al-Qaeda Expands in Syria

(Washington Post) Liz Sly - A rebranded version of Iraq's al-Qaeda affiliate is surging onto the front lines of the war in neighboring Syria, expanding into territory seized by other rebel groups and carving out sanctuaries in the northern and eastern provinces of the country. The Iraqi al-Qaeda group, now known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, has been bolstered by thousands of foreign fighters from the region and beyond. At the same time, Jabhat al-Nusra, the original Syrian al-Qaeda affiliate, has resisted efforts by the Islamic State to absorb it. The U.S. military claimed it had subdued al-Qaeda in Iraq by the time it withdrew from Iraq in 2011. Evidently it did not, said Bruce Hoffman, director of security studies at Georgetown University, who thinks Syria is even more strategically significant for the group than Iraq.

2013-08-13 00:00:00

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