4 min read  | Politics, Reports

Rebels react to US announcement


June 14, 2013

June 14, 2013

By Syria Direct news staff

A range of rebel fighters, commanders and spokesman comment on the Obama administration’s announcement on Thursday to enforce a no-fly zone 25 miles into Syria from the Jordanian border, to provide light weapons and ammunition to rebels and to provide training for the Free Syrian Army inside Jordan.

Louai Mikdad – Spokesman of the FSA General Staff/based in Turkey

“The FSA General Staff welcomes the American decision and wishes immediate steps to be taken to protect the Syrian people. We hope that arming us results in us immediately resisting the assaults of the regime and Hezbollah militia on civilian areas, where thousands of civilians might be killed due to the regime’s use of their Air Force, ballistic missiles and chemical weapons.

We encourage the American administration and the European Union to decide on a no-fly-zone to protect defenseless civilians from the regime’s daily bombings with rockets and aircraft.”

Faris, 27, currently fighting regime forces west of Damascus.

“None of it matters anymore.” [He was talking about both the American announcement and that of the Muslim scholars in Cairo, also on Thursday, calling for jihad “in all forms” to help the rebels. Faris means that they are on a path to live or die and it is too late for anyone else to help Syria.]

Col. Musa Abo Sakher – Commander of FSA military operations in Golan/based in village near demilitarized zone

“We welcome all the activities of the United States that aim to assist the Syrian people and the FSA. We thank them for their concern about the FSA and training it in Jordan to confront the Syrian government army. We appeal to the US to supply the FSA in all areas, especially the Golan, with advanced lethal weapons to enable them to liberate the area from the government army.

The FSA in the Golan is committed to honoring [Syrian] treaties signed with the UN, the Syrian Arab Republic and Israel. We will commit to these treaties until a fairly elected government of the Syrian people emerges.”

Fahed al-Masri – Media Officer at the Joint Command of the FSA/based in Paris

“The Joint Command of the FSA welcomes this decision and considers it a step in the right direction, even though it is late. We think this is the beginning of righting the wrongs committed by the US and Europe in regards to the Syrian crisis.

We think there was an international will to weaken all parties within the Syrian crisis, but after the involvement of Iran and Hezbollah, and the ultimate support of Russia, the crisis become regional and [then] global. We don’t think that a “weak Syria” will help security and stability in Syria, the Middle East or peace in the region.

What we want is to topple the Syrian regime and not the Syrian state.

The involvement of Iran and Hezbollah in the crisis will cost them dearly. We said before that al-Qusayr will be the grave for Hezbollah. Even though Hezbollah was able to invade al-Qusayr, they signed their death certificates with the blood of the Syrian people. The Syrian people are paying not only for their freedom, but for freedom in the entire region. We assure them that the situation in Syria is heading for the better, and that the crisis has reached its final stage.”

Abdul Jabar al-Akidi, Chief of Aleppo Military Council (FSA)

“I think it is a good move, if it is really is an honest move. It is what we have been asking for from the beginning. If they had made this decision earlier, we wouldn’t be facing this [situation] now. We hope the next move will be bigger and more extensive.”

Abu Jarah, Leader of Al al-Bait Battalions in Binish-Idlib

My opinion and Syrian people agree with me about it, which is the following: the reason for the no-fly zone is to protect Israel’s borders. The regime can attack any place in Daraa from Damascus with no need for its air force. The embargo is useless if we look at it from a military perspective.

Daraa province is relatively small and it has a big military base. Because it is near Israel’s borders it will have to be safe and secure to ensure Israel’s safety.

Russia and its allies will be allowed to send forces in the name of United Nations to protect Israel borders and in same time to support Assad regime.

If the US really wanted to help Syrian people, it should have ordered a buffer zone in the north of Syria, especially in Idlib province, sections of which have been liberated for over a year. Not to mention that Idlib is three times bigger than Daraa. The American bases in Turkey could easily do that from all sides: providing logistical, military, medical, and humanitarian aid, too.

The first goal of this announcement by America is the safety of Israel, and then to implement the agenda with exiled opposition, which does not represent anything inside Syria. Keep in mind that the opposition does not reflect the Syrian people’s needs or opinions.

What America and its allies are seeking, with the Syrian opposition, will lead to a river of blood and a fierce civil war. We expect drones to bomb rebels, claiming they’re terrorists, or mistakenly killing other rebels, which will result in the death of the revolution.

From the beginning of the revolution, America armed the groups that were loyal to it and the Syrian National Council, supplying them with light and heavy arms to impose them on the revolutionary street, but they failed.

What the world must know, especially America, is that the Syrian people, rebels and the free people, are aware of everything and know America, its politics, plans, and objectives.

Our advice to America is to come, understand and talk to the Syrian people in the field. They have to have a dialogue with the rebels and the free people and agree on common interests.

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