fredag, augusti 02, 2013

"Abu Salman": De kristna ska slängas ut

"Abu Salman" från Fisksätra.
Från Facebook 29/7.
Foreign Policy intervjuar två europeiska jihadister i norra Syrien, varav den ena kallar sig Abu Salman, ett namn som är tämligen ovanligt. Det är naturligtvis omöjligt att säga säkert om det rör sig om samma person, men det finns en svensk medborgare i norra Syrien som kallar sig just Abu Salman: Akar Saman Ali från Fisksätra utanför Stockholm.
"Abu Salman" i Foreign Policy.

"Abu Salman is something of a free agent in the Syrian jihad, moving fluidly between groups depending on who needs his services. 'I am involved in electronics,' he says. 'I cooperate with any group who needs me here. I did not join one specific group because of the nature of my work, every group needs me.'

But Abu Salman adds that he mostly works with al Qaeda affiliates such as Jabhat al-Nusra and ISIS, or alternatively Ahrar al-Sham and Suqoor al-Sham, militias known for their strict interpretation of Islamic law. 'They are the best fighters of Islam,' he explains.

Abu Salman believes that foreign jihadists in Syria have gotten a bad rap: He says he agreed to give this interview to explain to the world what foreign fighters are doing in Syria. 'It doesn't matter how long you speak of what you do,' he says. 'If you have a beard, if you do salaat [Muslim prayers] you are considered a terrorist. The outside world doesn't understand us. They don't have our mentality. They don't know what we want.'

Unlike Abu Talal, Abu Salman is willing to explain how he came to Syria. 'I came from the airport [in Turkey] and went illegally through the border from Turkey into Sham,' he says. 'Everybody is taking this road.'

The journey, however, is starting to become more difficult for foreigners. 'The road is starting to get cut,' Abu Salman says. 'You cannot enter into Sham anymore without a Syrian passport, there are many more checks.'

Abu Salman agrees with his jihadist comrade that some elements of the Free Syrian Army are good 'mujahideen' -- but worries that the United States is funneling support to 'bad' elements within the umbrella organization. 'They [the United States] only give weapons to the worst groups; those who want democracy,' he explains. 'These groups operate inside the Free Syrian Army, but they even don't fight for democracy, they just steal money.'

The presence of foreign jihadists is controversial among local supporters of the Syrian revolt. Foreign Islamists regularly flog or execute alleged regime supporters in Raqqa, while in Aleppo jihadists executed a Syrian youth they believed had committed blasphemy. Kidnappings of Syrians, foreign journalists, and aid workers by Islamists are on the rise. Just this week, Father Paolo Dall'Oglio, a well-known Jesuit priest who lived in Syria for three decades and was staunchly pro-revolution, disappeared in Raqqa.

Abu Salman knows how tenuous the jihadists' position is among the Syrian population: He is convinced that after the Assad regime's defeat, some Syrians will launch a second revolution against radical Islamist groups. 'I feel this will happen,' he says. 'But it doesn't matter. Because the prophet peace be upon him, has said 'You will win this fight.''

And after Abu Salman and his cohort topple Assad and crush more secular rebel groups, what then? What will become of Syria's sizeable Christian, Alawi, and Shiite minority populations?

'The minorities?' he answers. 'They must just accept it. Those who do not accept it, they will be thrown out -- or they can leave.'"
Uppdatering 3/8:

Akar Saman Ali från Fisksätra säger det kanske inte rakt ut, men ger ändå intryck av att vilja dementera att det skulle vara han som figurerar i Foreing Policys intervju.