On Mar. 17, Abu Muhammad al Julani, the emir of Al Nusrah Front, issued a statement commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Syrian uprisings. Julani argued that the jihadists are inseparable from the Syrian people. Several years into the war, there are pockets of resistance to Al Nusrah, but the West has no strategy for harnessing this discontent and rolling back Al Nurah’s influence within the insurgency.
Al Nusrah Front, al Qaeda’s official branch in Syria, raided the 13th Division’s headquarters and seized its weapons. The 13th Division, which has received US-made TOW missiles, has long coexisted with the jihadists in northwestern Syria. But that all changed in the past 48 hours as al Qaeda’s men stormed its locations.