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The Battle for Syria

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As Syria's Assad Regime Crumbles, al-Qaeda Streams Across Border--Anticipates New Islamist State

July 21st 2012

Free Syrian Army

Officials with the United Nations Mission in Syria reported yesterday that the Assad regime may be close to defeat with the killing and destruction in Damascus reaching an almost apocalyptic level. At the same time, according to a former police trainer who served in Iraq, officials he spoke with said that members of al-Qaeda's terrorist groups (al-Qaeda in Iraq, al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula) have been pouring across the border into Syria hoping to turn Syria into an Islamist nation complete with a constitution based on Sharia law.

The source's information was later confirmed by Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari who said members of the al-Qaeda terrorism network have crossed the border into Syria "Yes indeed, we have solid information and intelligence that members of al-Qaeda terrorist network have gone in the other direction to Syria to help and to liaise to carry out terrorist attacks," Zebari told reporters at a news conference in Baghdad. The foreign minister told reporters that Iraq had warned the Syrian regime that extremist militants were crossing borders into Iraq, but now the terrorists are going back to fight in the Syrian conflict. "This is a fact that the extremist groups have an important role in the level of violence that is going on in Syria," Zebari added.

Syria's state news agency SANA warned that "armed terrorist groups" had blocked the road between Damascus and Beirut, Lebanon. The Syrian rebels have also reached Damascus, the nation's capital, and there were sounds of heavy fighting -- explosions and loud gunfire -- in the city, according to SANA.

Assad's war declaration on Monday was surprising to the Israelis since the Syrian president always claimed the uprising against him was nothing more than a few scattered militants and terrorists funded by outsiders who wished for the ouster of the Syrian government, especially Assad.

"We live in a real state of war from all angles," Assad told the new cabinet members he appointed in a speech broadcast on SANA state television.

Jim Kouri is the fifth Vice President and Public Information Officer of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, and writes for the Examiner. He has served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officiers throughout the U.S.


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