The Feed

Al Qaeda ‘Disavows’ Syrian Terror Group for being too Terroristy

Al Qaeda’s leader disavowed the most aggressive and brutal jihadist group fighting in Syria, deepening rifts among rebels embroiled in an internal war distracting from their fight against the Damascus regime.

The leader of al Qaeda’s central command, Ayman al-Zawahiri, condemned the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) in a posting on jihadist websites Sunday night. He decried the infighting among rebels as “a catastrophe for jihad in Syria.”

ISIS, with an estimated 10,000 fighters, has been one of the most effective rebel groups in claiming territory in the civil war. But rival fighters suspect the group has sought to turn the civil uprising against President Bashar al-Assad into a violent quest to build a cross-border Muslim state ruled by strict Islamic law in the Middle East.

ISIS leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi affirms loyalty to al Qaeda but has shrugged off previous commands from Mr. Zawahiri to respect the supremacy of al Qaeda’s recognized affiliate in Syria, the Nusra Front.

The disavowal marked an attempt to restore al Qaeda’s influence on the Syrian battlefield and to rally jihadist groups fighting there against ISIS. A month-old war within the armed opposition has turned the focus of many rebels toward battling ISIS and away from fighting the regime. Al Qaeda sees ISIS as a renegade band damaging the terror group’s brand through car bombings, mass killings, and torture of fellow Muslims. . .

Most Popular

Elections

Biden: Make America Great Again

A promise of economic nationalism, an expensive infrastructure bill that’s really a make-work program, prejudice against foreigners, denunciations of Wall Street — Joe Biden is running the 2016 Trump campaign against Donald Trump in 2020. Joe Biden gave a big economic speech in Pennsylvania yesterday, and ... Read More
Elections

Biden: Make America Great Again

A promise of economic nationalism, an expensive infrastructure bill that’s really a make-work program, prejudice against foreigners, denunciations of Wall Street — Joe Biden is running the 2016 Trump campaign against Donald Trump in 2020. Joe Biden gave a big economic speech in Pennsylvania yesterday, and ... Read More

Mel Gibson’s Beastmode

Late-period Mel Gibson is probably the best Mel Gibson; in film after film after film he plays ornery old bastards with such conviction that each successive outing feels like a personal trip to the confessional. He doesn’t need the money anymore, and most of these roles are in indie movies that pay very little ... Read More

Mel Gibson’s Beastmode

Late-period Mel Gibson is probably the best Mel Gibson; in film after film after film he plays ornery old bastards with such conviction that each successive outing feels like a personal trip to the confessional. He doesn’t need the money anymore, and most of these roles are in indie movies that pay very little ... Read More
Culture

No One Is Ever Woke Enough

Closing out the week: The Harper’s letter calling for freedom of expression demonstrates that no one is ever “woke” enough, and that any institution that tries to make peace with the perpetually aggrieved eventually becomes dysfunctional; the value of Hamilton as a litmus test of the limits of cancel ... Read More
Culture

No One Is Ever Woke Enough

Closing out the week: The Harper’s letter calling for freedom of expression demonstrates that no one is ever “woke” enough, and that any institution that tries to make peace with the perpetually aggrieved eventually becomes dysfunctional; the value of Hamilton as a litmus test of the limits of cancel ... Read More
Culture

Mark Zuckerberg Is Right

Mark Zuckerberg clearly hasn’t gotten the memo. The founder of Facebook persists in defending free expression, even though free speech has fallen decidedly out of fashion. His reward for adhering to what once would have been a commonsensical, if not banal, view of the value of the free exchange of ideas ... Read More
Culture

Mark Zuckerberg Is Right

Mark Zuckerberg clearly hasn’t gotten the memo. The founder of Facebook persists in defending free expression, even though free speech has fallen decidedly out of fashion. His reward for adhering to what once would have been a commonsensical, if not banal, view of the value of the free exchange of ideas ... Read More