Al-Qaida-linked rebels stage hit-and-run attacks in ancient Syrian Christian village

  • Article by: ALBERT AJI , Associated Press
  • Updated: September 5, 2013 - 3:25 PM

DAMASCUS, Syria — The sound of artillery reverberated Thursday through a predominantly Christian village north of Damascus as government troops and al-Qaida-linked rebels battled for control of the mountainside sanctuary.

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tmauelSep. 5, 1310:07 AM

Florida (D) Alan Grayson reports this morning Obama does not have the votes for a strike on Syria. Republicans are 10 to 1 against a strike democrats 4 to 1 against. Grayson says Obama is either bluffing or is not dealing with reality. Grayson went on to sight the faulty intelligence including the claim that U.S. intelligence has a classified recording of a Syrian commander that proves the Assad regime was involved. In fact Grayson says the call proves Syrian government forces are innocent but somehow the Obama administration twisted what the commanders on the ground actually said and have hidden that evidence as classified. Grayson also mentioned the 100 page Russian document containing evidence that the rebels were the perpetrators of the Ghouta attack and several other chemical attacks in recent months.

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dlzabzSep. 5, 1312:00 PM

Are we for or against Al-Qaida then? I'm confused.

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tmauelSep. 5, 1312:39 PM

The U.S. is supporting al-Qaeda rebels in the Syrian civil war. That support includes clandestine supply of chemical weapons to al-Qaeda rebels through Prince Bandar bin Sultan of Saudi Arabia in an obvious attempt to blame Assad and create a pretext for direct U.S. involvement in the Syrian civil war. The U.S. is also targeting al-Qaeda in Yemen, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Somalia with drone strikes that regularly kill civilians and first responders.

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clnorthSep. 5, 1312:46 PM

"Are we for or against Al-Qaida then? I'm confused." Just like raising the debt ceiling, Obama was against them, now he is for them.

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genericloginSep. 5, 13 2:49 PM

No wonder there is so much anti-American sentiment through out the world. One day we are expending American lives to eradicate Al-Qaida the next we are contemplating expending American lives to support them. At this point my confidence in our government is low. I wouldn't even be surprised if it was us who used the gas just to get things started. :( See Vietnam - Gulf of Tonkin. The vast majority of Americans are against military action, there is no evidence that Assad is responsible, yet Obama seems he11 bent on starting a war.

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vlombardySep. 5, 13 3:45 PM

The problem is that the US has historically backed any SOB that is our SOB. We never learn.

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endothermSep. 5, 13 4:15 PM

I have no doubt that the ruthless Syrian government launched the chemical weapons attacks, but I also have no doubt that many of the rebels are vicious extremists who have plans to oppress religious minorities if they somehow manage to gain power. So, this is a lose-lose situation and we shouldn't pick sides in the civil war. That said, I also agree with the President that the international community should not just sit around while civilians are gassed in their homes. We need to both put pressure on Assad to destroy his chemical weapons and put pressure on the rebels to respect religious minorities. If it were somehow possible to fire some missiles and destroy the chemical weapons, I would support this. But it won't be that easy. The weapons are hidden in civilian areas and our air strikes could do more harm than good. Given the circumstances, it is better to not attack and instead use economic and diplomatic pressure to isolate the war criminals. Many of the allies who are opposed to military strikes would sign-up for a resolution, an arms embargo and a war crimes tribunal.

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kalimotxoSep. 5, 13 4:47 PM

What shoddy reporting. Rebels try to take village not under their control, but sitting in the middle of their territory. Makes sense. It's not about religion.

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hobie2Sep. 5, 13 5:19 PM

The more the US people find out about the rebels, the more Americans are demanding we send gas TO Assad.

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minnfidel11Sep. 5, 13 5:24 PM

And these are the people that Obama wants to aid? Apparently siding with AQ in Egypt in Libya wasn't a good enough lesson in failure that he wants to do it again! What a colossal failure. I realize Assad is no prince either but the last two times we've sided with groups with known ties to AQ. It's insulting that he is doing it yet again.

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