Washington's Blog: A Proxy War Is Raging in Syria!

Right now inside Syria, Hezbollah fighters backed by the Syrian government, Iran and Lebanon, are fighting Al Qaeda, and Muslim Brotherhood terrorist fighters, backed by the US, Israel, the Eurozone, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. BBC reports: The military chief of the main umbrella group of Syrian rebels claimed that more than 7,000 fighters of the Lebanese Shia movement were taking part in attacks on the rebel held town of Qusair. The French foreign minister has estimated the number at 3,000-4,000. Hezbollah fighters have been in Syria for some time now, but their numbers appear to have grown rapidly over the last few weeks. Not only did the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia largely create, sponsor and fund Al Qaeda, but also two other groups fighting on the side of the Syrian rebels: Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. This is a proxy war. As we have documented in detail, the US, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Qatar and their allies back the Sunni jihadists against Shia Muslims. Indeed, the US is involved in a religious war, between the two factions of Islam, and is actually backing the most violent elements, as part of a geopolitical strategy to exert control over the natural gas market. BBC notes: There is a growing concern in the US that the conflict in Syria is morphing into a complex regional war by proxy. ABC News reports: Hezbollah and Al Qaeda fighters edging closer to full scale confrontation. Syria's conflict is often described as a civil war, but that is only true insofar as it has yet to spill over into another country on a large scale or draw in too many different forces. But it is the quintessential proxy war, with the Alawite, an offshoot of Shia Islam Assad regime backed up by Shia allies Hezbollah and Iran, as well as Russia and China. The Sunni rebels are supported by the Islamist rulers of Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Turkey, as well as the US, France, Britain and others. In December, Syrian rebels burned down a Shiite mosque in northern Idib province. Fighting between Hezbollah and Jabhat al Nusra is being waged closer and closer to the Zeinab shrine. Shiite villagers are coming under attack by militants who praise Osama bin Laden and Sunni villagers are being slaughtered by regime loyalists. Sectarian fighting has already leaked across the border into northern Lebanon. For example, Syrian rebels, Sunnis, apparently shelled Shiites inside neighboring Lebanon. The stage has been set. When Hezbollah and Israel are both actively fighting in the same third country, writes Ramy Khoury, a professor of international affairs at the American University of Beirut, and Iran and the United States are both actively warning about their determination to act to protect their allies and their interests in that same third country, it is time to make another pot of coffee, and make sure you have plenty of fresh batteries at home for your transistor radio.

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