Tags for Syrian Civil War

January 22, 2015

NOTICE!!!

This is a rough, text-only copy and paste of my guide to the factions of the Syrian Civil War. Since the guide is a google doc and as far as I know google docs aren’t included in Google searches, I’m putting all the text here so that people might be able to find my guide if they search for one of the groups I’ve listed. As I update the guide, I will add new names to the bottom of the post rather than copying and pasting the guide again.

  • Government
    • National Progressive Front (ruling coalition)
      • Arab Socialist Ba’ath Party – Syria Region

Ideology: Assadist neo-Ba’athism (personalism, Arab nationalism, authoritarianism, Alawite favoritism, socialism (nominally)). The original Ba’ath Party split in 1966 between the Syrian and Iraqi branches. The Assadist (pro-Syrian) and Saddamist (pro-Iraqi) movements have little ideological differences, but their rivalry has been fierce. The Syrian Ba’ath has ruled Syria since 1963; the Assad family has led the party since 1970.

      • Arab Socialist Union Party of Syria

Ideology: Nasserism

      • Syrian Communist Party (Bakdash)

Ideology: Stalinism. The original SCP split in 1986 over the issue of perestroika, with the SCP-B being opposed to it.

      • Syrian Communist Party (Unified)

Ideology: Leninism. aka Syrian Communist Party (Faysal). This was the pro-perestroika faction of the split.

      • Socialist Unionists

Ideology: Nasserism

      • National Vow Movement

Ideology: Arab nationalism. Split from the Arab Socialist Movement.

    • Popular Front for Change and Liberation (legal opposition)
      • People’s Will Party

Ideology: Leninism. Expelled from Syrian Communist Party (Bakdash) under allegations of Trotskyism. It signed an agreement with the National Coordinating Committee (see below) in 2014, so it might no longer be a part of the legal opposition.

    • Syrian Social Nationalist Party

Ideology: Syrian nationalism (historically ultranationalism), left-leaning economics, Christian interests. Possibly has a militia active in the war. Was a part of the Popular Front for Change and Liberation from 2012-2014. Signed a “memorandum of understanding” with the NCC (see opposition section below) following leaving the PFCL.

    • Lebanese political parties:
      • Syrian Social Nationalist Party in Lebanon

(see SSNP above)

      • Hezbollah

Ideology: Shia Islamism, anti-Zionism. Also involved militarily.

      • Arab Democratic Party

Ideology: Arab nationalism, Arab socialism. Often seen as a Syrian-backed Alawite party.

      • Popular Nasserist Organization

Ideology: Nasserism

    • Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq

Ideology: Shia Islamism. One of the main Shia parties in Iraq. Like the Badr Organization, it has connections in the Iraqi intelligence sector and is associated with anti-Sunni discrimination. Ideologically close to Iran.

    • Badr Organization

Ideology: Shia Islamism. See military section below. It split from the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq in 2003.

    • possibly other Iraqi Shia parties?
  • Opposition
    • Syrian National Coalition/Syrian Interim Government and Syrian National Council

Ideology: pro-democracy, pro-human rights. The Syrian National Council left the National Coalition in January 2014 in protest of the Coalition’s decision to attend peace talks. Nevertheless many Council members appear to still be in the Coalition, so members of both groups are listed here.

      • Syrian Revolution General Commission

Ideology: pro-democracy, pro-human rights. One of the three main activist fronts, the SRGC is the most aggressive and has poor relations with the Syrian National Council.

      • Local Coordination Committees of Syria

Ideology: pro-democracy, pro-human rights. One of the three main activist fronts. Opposed to the military conflict, at least at first.

      • Supreme Council of the Syrian Revolution

Ideology: pro-democracy, pro-human rights. One of the three main activist fronts.

      • Muslim Brotherhood in Syria

Ideology: Sunni Islamism, Islamic democracy. As in Egypt, the Muslim Brotherhood is a very influential organization in Syria despite its long history of persecution.

      • Syrian National Current

Ideology: liberalism, moderate Sunni Islamism

      • National Working Group for Syria

Ideology: conservatism, moderate Sunni Islamism

      • Democratic Coordination Meeting
      • Syrian National Democratic Bloc
      • Kurdish National Council (see Kurdish section below)
      • Kurdish Future Movement (see Kurdish section below)
      • Coalition of Secular and Democratic Syrians

Ideology: secularism. Calls for Kosovo-style intervention (no-fly zone, safe zones, etc.).

      • Syrian Emergency Task Force

Ideology: secularism. A U.S. advocacy group that lobbies to get the US military involved in the war. Possibly connected to the Coalition of Secular and Democratic Syrians.

      • Assyrian Democratic Organization

Ideology: Syriac interests, social democracy. Linked to the Iraq-based Assyrian Democratic Movement.

      • Syrian Turkmen Assembly

Ideology: Turkmen interests. Includes two political parties:

        • Syrian Democratic Turkmen Movement
        • Syrian Turkmen National Bloc

Possibly connected to the ruling Justice and Development Party in Turkey.

      • Damascus Declaration

Ideology: pro-democracy, pro-human rights. Formed in 2005; most of its initial member parties have left. Remaining affiliates:

        • Syrian Democratic People’s Party

Ideology: social democracy (Leninism historically). Also involved with the National Democratic Rally (see below).

        • Movement for Justice and Development in Syria

Ideology: centrism, economically liberalism, moderate Sunni Islamism.

        • National Liberal Alliance

Ideology: liberalism. The personal party of businessman Samir Nashar.

        • Arab Socialist Movement (see National Democratic Rally below)
        • Arab Revolutionary Workers Party (see National Democratic Rally below)
      • National Salvation Front in Syria

Ideology: pro-democracy. Sympathetic to SNC. Dominated by Islamists. Formed by exiled former Vice President Abdul Halim Khaddam.

      • Syrian National Democratic Council

Ideology: opposes Assad but wants to preserve authoritarian state structure. Founded by Assad’s exiled uncle Rifaat al-Assad. Includes his personal party, the United National Democratic Rally.

    • National Coordination Committee for the Forces of Democratic Change (NCC)

Initially ambivalent about the war, but lately has been leaning towards the opposition. Still distrusted by many rebels.

      • National Democratic Rally
        • Democratic Arab Socialist Union

Ideology: Nasserism, democratic socialism. Has often come in conflict with the more stridently anti-regime Syrian Democratic People’s Party.

        • Syrian Democratic People’s Party (see Damascus Declaration above). Not a member of the NCC.
        • Arab Revolutionary Workers Party

Ideology: Marxism. Also a member of the Damascus Declaration. Not a member of the NCC.

  • Arab Socialist Movement (opposition faction)

Ideology: Arab socialism. Also a member of the Damascus Declaration. Another faction of the party exists and is pro-government but doesn’t have any seats in the legislature.

        • Arab Democratic Socialist Ba’ath Party

Ideology: left-wing Ba’athism (e.g., anti-neo-Ba’athist), democratic socialism

  • Communist Labour Party

Ideology: Leninism

      • Marxist Left Assembly

Ideology: Marxism. Heavy overlap with the National Democratic Rally.

      • Democratic Islamic Current

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism

      • Together for a Free and Democratic Syria Movement

Ideology: democracy, human rights

      • April 17 Youth Movement

Ideology: democracy, human rights, leftism?

      • Democratic Union Party (see Kurdish section below)
      • Syriac Union Party (see Kurdish section below)
    • Lebanese political parties:
      • Future Movement

Ideology: classical liberalism, Sunni interests. Not to be confused with the Kurdish Future Movement.

      • Guardians of the Cedars/Lebanese Renewal Party/Movement of Lebanese Nationalism.

Ideology: Phoenicianism (Phoenician nationalism), anti-Palestinian sentiment, Christian interests

      • Progressive Socialist Party

Ideology: democratic socialism, social democracy, Druze interests

  • Kurds and allies
    • Kurdish Supreme Committee

Note: The flag above is that of the PYD (described below), but it has become the de facto flag of Syrian Kurdistan due to the PYD’s somewhat authoritarian policies.

      • Democratic Union Party (PYD)

Ideology: democratic socialism, Kurdish nationalism. Linked to the Turkey-based Kurdistan Workers’ Party. Also part of the NCC.

      • Kurdish National Council

Ideology: various; above all, Kurdish nationalism. Alliance of Kurdish opposition parties. Also part of the Syrian National Coalition. Has links with the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq. Most of the members:

        • Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (KDPS)

The largest party in the KNC. Linked to the Kurdish Democratic Party in Iraq. There are several Syrian parties with this name; the others are listed with their leaders in parentheses to distinguish them.

        • Kurdish Democratic Progressive Party in Syria (KDPP)

Linked to the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (see below).

        • Kurdish Democratic Unity Party in Syria

Split from Yekiti.

        • Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (Nasir Eddin Ibrahim)

Split from the larger KDPS.

        • Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria (Mohammad Saeed)
        • Kurdish Syrian Democratic Party (Jamal Sheik Bagi)

Note that this party has a slightly different name.

        • Kurdish Democratic Union Party in Syria/”Yekiti”

One of the more active Kurdish party in the initial protests before and during the early stages of the war. No connection to the larger Democratic Union Party listed above. Has possibly merged into the KDPS.

        • Kurdish Left Party in Syria

A social democratic/democratic socialist split from the KDPS. Also a member of the Marxist Left Assembly (see the NCC above).

        • Kurdish Freedom Party/”Azadi” (Mustafa Osso)

There were two parties with this name. The original was a left-leaning split from the main KDPS. One faction merged back into the KDPS in April 2014, while this faction appears to have re-asserted its independence.

        • Kurdish Unity Party
        • Kurdish Equality Democratic Party in Syria

Split from the KDPP over leadership issues.

        • Kurdish Democratic Patriotic Party

Another split from the KDPP.

        • Kurdistan Democratic Party in Syria (Abdurrahman Aluj)

Split from the larger KDPS.

        • Democratic Left Kurdish Party in Syria

Presumably social democratic/democratic socialist.

        • Syrian Kurdish Democratic Accord

Split from the PYD.

    • Kurdish Future Movement

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, liberalism. Member of the Syrian National Council, at least at one point. The party split in two in 2012 over a leadership dispute and the stance of the party towards the PYD. The more stridently anti-PYD faction established a small militia in 2014.

    • Coordinating Kurdish Brotherhood

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism. Based in Aleppo.

    • Syriac Union Party

Ideology: Syriac interests. Linked to Lebanese SUP. Also part of the NCC.

    • Iraqi Kurdistan

Governing parties:

      • Kurdistan Democratic Party

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism

      • Patriotic Union of Kurdistan

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, social democracy

    • Kurdish Democratic Party of Iran

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, social democracy. Led an insurgency in Iran from 1989-1996. Still illegal.

    • Marxist-Leninist Communist Party

Ideology: Hoxhaism (Albanian-style communism). One of several illegal militant leftist groups in Turkey.

    • Kurdistan Workers’ Party

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, democratic socialism (Leninism and Maoism historically). Based in Turkey, where it has been engaged in an insurgency for decades. Although an end to the insurgency was announced in 2013, it remains a designated terrorist organization.

Military factions

  • pro-government
    • Syrian Armed Forces
      • Syrian Arab Army
        • National Defense Force

A volunteer force. More professional than the Shabiha. Members are officially allowed to loot battlefields, unlike regular army units.

      • Syrian Arab Navy
      • Syrian Arab Air Force
      • Syrian Arab Air Defense Force
      • Military Intelligence Directorate
    • Shabiha

A militia force established in the 1980s to crack down on dissent. Less professional than the NDF.

    • Ba’ath Brigades

A volunteer militia mostly made up of Sunnis and/or members of the Ba’ath Party.

    • Jaysh al-Sha’bi

A volunteer militia. Heavily linked to Iran and Hezbollah. Unclear if the NDF and Jaysh al-Sha’bi are the same organization.

    • Liwa Abu al-Fadhal al-Abbas

Ideology: Shia Islamism. Established to defend Shia holy sites and Shi’ite civilians. Most members are from Iraq. Heavy links and overlaps with Hezbollah and the Special Groups.

    • Liwa’a Zulfiqar

Ideology: Shia Islamism. Split from Liwa Abu al-Fadhal al-Abbas over finances.

    • Liwa Assad Allah al-Ghaleb

Ideology: Shia Islamism. Most members are from Iraq.

    • Sootoro/Syriac Protection Office

Ideology: Syriac interests. Originally the Qamishli branch of the Sutoro; aligned itself with government.

    • Iranian Revolutionary Guard

Ideology: Shia Islamism. Iran’s influential paramilitary.

      • Basij (security force)
      • Quds Force (foreign ops)
    • Hezbollah

Ideology: Shia Islamism, anti-Zionism. A powerful Lebanese political-military organization.

    • Special Groups (semi-legal Iranian-backed Shia jihadist insurgents from Iraq)
      • Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq

A split from the Promised Day Brigade. Currently the largest of the three main special groups (the others being Kata’ib Hezbollah and the Promised Day Brigade) and the closest of these groups to former Iraqi prime minister Nour al-Maliki.

      • Promised Day Brigade

The most independent from Iran of the three main Special Groups. Derived from the Mahdi Army, an insurgent force led by popular cleric Muqtadā al-Ṣadr.

      • Kata’ib Hezbollah

The smallest of the three main Special Groups and the closest to Iran.

      • Sariyya al-Tali’a al-Khurasani
      • Saraya al-Khorasani

Possibly the same as the above group.

      • Liwa al-Islam al-Hussein

Like the Promised Day Brigades, its members support the theology of Muqtadā al-Ṣadr, although Sadr has renounced violence.

      • Rapid Intervention Movement

Also part of the Sadrist movement.

      • Faylak Wa’ad al-Sadiq

Possibly connected to Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq.

      • Others: these brands overlap with other Iraqi Shia groups too much to be considered factions of their own. Some of them are:
        • Kata’ib Sayyid al-Shuhada (Badr Organization)
        • Harakat al-Nujaba (Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq and Kata’ib Hezbollah)
          • Liwa’a ‘Ammar Ibn Yasir (Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq in particular)
          • Liwa al-Hamad
          • Liwa’a al-Imam al-Hasan al-Mujtaba
        • Liwa’a  Kafeel Zaynab (Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq)
        • Haidar al-Karar Brigades (Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq)
        • Quwet al-Shahid Muhammed Baqir al-Sadr (Badr Organization)
        • Saraya Ansar al-Aqeeda (Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq)
        • Saraya Ashura (Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq)
    • Badr Organization

Ideology: Shia Islamism. An Iraqi political-military force. Unlike the above Special Groups, the Badr Organization is legal and has connections in the Iraqi intelligence sector. Responsible for some anti-Sunni violence in Iraq. It split from the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq in 2003.

    • National Ideological Resistance

Ideology: Shia Islamism, Syrian nationalism. Very similar to Hezbollah; possibly set up by Hezbollah.

    • Houthis

Ideology: Shia jihadism. Specifically the Liwa Saada brigade of this group. A Yemeni militia that’s also fighting in that country.

    • Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command/Jihad Jibril Brigades

Ideology: Arab nationalism, anti-Zionism. A split from the original PFLP. A major Syrian proxy force in Palestine and in Palestinian refugee camps.

    • Fatah al-Intifada

Ideology: Arab nationalism, anti-Zionism, socialism? Split from the more well-known Fatah. Another Syrian Palestinian proxy force.

    • Jaysh al-Muwahhideen

Ideology: Druze interests. A Druze volunteer militia.

    • Palestine Liberation Army

Ideology: Arab nationalism, anti-Zionism. Another Syrian Palestinian proxy force.

    • Syrian Resistance/Popular Front for the Liberation of the Sanjak of Alexandretta

Ideology: Leninism, Syrian nationalism. Some evidence indicates that it is more of an Alawite sectarian group than a communist group. Its leader was formerly a member of the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), one of several leftist terrorist groups in Turkey.

    • Mavros Krinos

Ideology: Strasserism (left-wing Nazism). A tiny group of Greek volunteers.

    • Arab Nationalist Guard

Ideology: Arab nationalism. A volunteer force that includes many foreign members.

    • weapons and financial support from:
      • Russia
      • Iran (see Iranian Revolutionary Guard above)
      • North Korea
      • Iraq
      • Venezuela
  • opposition
    • Free Syrian Army

A loose, often informal coalition of moderate groups. Established by defecting members of the Syrian military. The actual leadership of the “Army” is disputed and has become irrelevant. Some notable subgroups:

      • Farouq Brigades

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Had left the FSA in 2012 to join the Syrian Islamic Liberation Front, but when SILF dissolved in 2013 (most of its members joined the Islamic Front), the Farouq Brigades returned to the FSA. Once a prominent group, but support has dwindled due to splits and battlefield losses.

      • Independent Omar al-Farouq Brigade

Ideology: unknown. One of several splits from the original Farouq Brigades. This unit is the one behind the infamous video of a rebel commander eating a government soldier’s lung (widely reported as the heart).

      • Ghuraba al-Sham (moderate group)

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Not to be confused with the jihadist group of the same name (see below). Some members were known for looting civilian areas. Almost all of its fighters and weapons are gone due to conflicts with hardline Islamists.

      • National Unity Brigades

Ideology: secularism. Notable for including large numbers of minorities. Political branch is known as the National Unity Movement.

      • Free Syrian Union

Ideology: secularism, social justice

      • Northern Storm Brigade (see al-Tawhid Brigade)
      • Salah al-Din al-Ayyubi Brigade

Ideology: secularism, Kurdish nationalism. Mostly Kurdish but also has Turkmen and Arab members. Possibly defunct due to harassment by the YPG.

      • Kurdish Military Council

Ideology: secularism, Kurdish nationalism. Like the Salah al-Din Ayyubi Brigade, it appears to have been suppressed by the YPG.

      • Liwa al-Fatah al-Mubin

Ideology: unknown, likely moderate Sunni Islamism. Possibly a former affiliate of the Authenticity and Development Front. Was an affiliate of the Euphrates Islamic Liberation Front, an FSA outfit formed to fight ISIS which is now defunct.

      • Free Officers’ Movement

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Formed by defecting Syrian army officers in the early stages of the war; became the foundation for the FSA. Unknown if it still exists as a group.

      • Knights of the Levant Alawite Battalion

Ideology: Alawite interests. Defected from pro-regime forces in 2012.

      • Free Alawite Front

Ideology: Alawite interests. Another 2012 defection.

      • 5th Corps

A merger of several small groups, all of whom have received Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles. Possibly defunct, though its constituent groups are definitely still active.

        • 13th Division

Ideology: secularism. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • 101st Division

Ideology: secularism. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Knights of Justice Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism, secularism. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • 1st Brigade Infantry

Ideology: unknown, possibly secularism

        • Falcons of Mt. Zawiya Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism, secularism. Former affiliate of the Ahfad al-Rasul Brigades and the Syria Revolutionaries Front. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles. Close to the Idlib Military Council.

      • Ahmad al-Abdo Martyrs Brigades and Battalions

Ideology: secularism. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

      • Falcons of al-Ghab

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

      • 1st Coastal Division (the second logo was used when the group was known as the Brigade of the Chargers)

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism, secularism. Formerly affiliated with the Ahfad al-Rasul Brigades. One of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

      • Jihad in the Path of God Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Works closely with the Revolutionaries of Raqqa Brigade.

      • Revolutionaries of Raqqa Brigade

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Assimilated into al-Nusra for a time before re-asserting its FSA orientation. Has possibly received US weapons. Close to the Muwatana pro-democratic political movement.

      • Liwa Shuhada Badr

Ideology: unknown. Has fought ISIS, but is also known as a bastion of corruption.

      • Hazzm Movement

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Formerly  part of the Syria Revolutionaries Front. The first and most prominent of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

      • Jabhat al-Anqad al-Thawriya al-Islamiyya

Ideology: unknown, likely moderate Sunni Islamism

      • Division 19 (see Army of Mujahideen below)
      • Shields of the Revolution Council

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood.

      • Battalion of the Free Men of Haḍr

Ideology: Druze interests

      • Sultan Pasha al-Atrash Battalion

Ideology: Druze interests

      • Battalion of the Martyr Kamal Jumblatt

Ideology: Druze interests, democratic socialism/social democracy? Named after the founder of the Progressive Socialist Party in Lebanon (see political section above).

      • Bani Maarouf Battalion

Ideology: Druze interests

      • Salamiya Youth Brigade

Ideology: Ismaili Shia interests. Not to be confused with the Peaceful Youth Brigade, which has the same name in Arabic.

      • Syrian Turkmen Brigades

Ideology: Turkmen interests. Military wing of Syrian Turkmen Assembly.

      • Dawn of Freedom Brigades

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Set up to cooperate with the YPG to fight ISIS. Many affiliates are ex-Tawhid Brigade. One of the notable subgroups:

        • Northern Sun Battalion

Ideology: secularism. Formed by Kurds of the YPG (see below) and Turkmen to fight ISIS. The main FSA group in Kobanî, the Kurdish town famously under siege by ISIS. It’s unclear whether the battalion is a temporary alliance or a more permanent formation independent of the YPG.

      • Saraya Jarabulus

Ideology: unknown

      • Jaysh al-Qasas

Ideology: unknown

      • Syria Revolutionaries Front

An alliance of moderate groups declared in reaction to the Islamist Front merger in early 2014. Its members have begun receiving Western aid. The SRF, particularly its leader, who heads the Syrian Martyrs Brigades, is widely-seen as a humble revolutionary-turned corrupt warlord. Al-Nusra used this as an excuse to drive the SRF and other moderates like the Hazzm Movement out of Idlib governorate in October/November 2014, which was where the SRF had its most support. Some of the notable subgroups:

        • Syrian Martyrs’ Brigade

Ideology: secularism. Once a prominent group, but support has dwindled, partly due to lack of ideology and charges of corruption.

        • Idlib Military Council

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Close to the Falcons of Mt. Zawiya Brigade.

        • Idlib Martyrs’ Brigade (the old logo, back when the unit called itself the Syrian Liberation Army)

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism

        • Ahfad al-Rasul Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Originally one of the first rebel groups not affiliated with either the FSA or an Islamist coalition. It later joined the Euphrates Islamic Liberation Front (now defunct), and now is part of the SRF, though it’s possible that it is defunct and its fighters have joined other SRF brigades.

        • Omari Brigades (see Southern Front below)
        • Helpers Brigades

Ideology: unknown

        • Al-Anfal Brigade (see Southern Front below)
        • Jabhat al-Izz

Ideology: unknown

        • Liwa Ahrar al-Zawiya

Ideology: unknown

        • 7th Division

Ideology: unknown

        • Helpers of Sunna Brigade (see Southern Front below)
      • 77th Division

Ideology: unknown, likely moderate Sunni Islamism. Likely connected to the Ahfad al-Rasul Brigades through their common leader.

      • Quneitra Military Council

Ideology: unknown. Parts of it have received Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles. Its former leader, Abdul-Illa al-Bashir, is nominally the head of the FSA.

      • Al-Rahman Legion

Ideology: unknown, possibly moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received at least one US-supplied TOW anti-tank missile.

      • Council of Aleppo Rebels

Ideology: unknown

      • Homs Liberation Movement

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Formed by military defectors in 2014.

      • Southern Command

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism, Sunni Islamism. One of the many subgroups:

        • Liwa al-Mujahid Omar al-Mukhtar

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. At times has expressed closeness with Ahrar ash-Sham and has referred to the regime with the common anti-Alawite nickname “Nusayri’; has also been fighting ISIS.

      • Southern Front

An alliance of mostly moderate groups; several constituent groups have begun to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles in the past few months. Some notable subgroups:

        • Hawks of the South

Notable constituent groups:

          • Yarmouk Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. The leading affiliate of the Southern Front. Known for close cooperation with al-Nusra; despite this, it was one of the original 9 groups to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

          • March 18 Division

Ideology: unknown

        • Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Kidnapped 21 UN soldiers in 2013 for delivering aid to the Assad regime; they were subsequently released due to immense pressure on the brigade from the international community and from other rebel units. The brigade has also executed captured government soldiers on at least one occasion.

        • Sword of al-Sham Brigades

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Martyrs of Islam Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Amoud Horan Brigade

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • 1st Corps

Ideology: unknown, possibly secularism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • 1st Army

Ideology: secularism, moderate Sunni Islamism. Three subgroups:

          • Hamza Division

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

          • 1st Artillery Regiment

Ideology: unknown, likely secularism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

          • southern affiliates of the Syria Revolutionaries Front, such as:
            • Omari Brigades

Ideology: unknown. One of the original 9 groups to receive US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

            • Al-Anfal Brigade

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

            • Helpers of Sunna Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Not to be confused with extremist organizations of the same name (not listed here). Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Daraa Military Council
          • Hamza Division (see above)
          • Emigrants and Helpers Brigade

Ideology: unknown, likely moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

          • Dawn of Islam Division

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

          • 1st Artillery Regiment (see above)
        • Unity Battalion of Horan

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Youth of Sunna Brigade

Ideology: unknown, likely moderate Sunni Islamism. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • United Sham Front

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles. One of the notable subgroups:

          • Damascus Martyrs’ Brigades

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism

        • Tahrir al-Sham Division

Ideology: unknown. Claimed in 2013 to have fired on a convoy containing Assad himself.

        • 1st Commando Division

Ideology: unknown

        • Ababil Houran Brigade

Ideology: unknown

        • Lions of Sunna Brigade

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

        • Southern Unity Brigade

Ideology: unknown. Has received US-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles.

    • Partisans of Islam Front

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Reportedly the most Islamist group to receive Western-supplied TOW anti-tank missiles. Not connected to Ansar al-Islam of Iraq (whose full Arabic name, “Jamaat Ansar al-Islam, sounds like the Partisan’s Arabic name, “Jabhat Ansar al-Islam”).

    • People’s Liberation Faction

Ideology: leftism. Formed by the Revolutionary Left Current, which has links with the Trotskyist Fourth International.

    • Peaceful Youth Brigade

Ideology: unknown, possibly leftism or at least secularism. Possibly a youth wing for the People’s Liberation Faction. Not to be confused with the Salamiya Youth Brigade, which has the same name in Arabic.

    • Army of Mujahedeen

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Formed to fight ISIS. Includes Division 19, which formally is still part of the FSA. Less hardline than the Islamic Front, but still too sectarian to be considered “moderate”. Nonetheless, the US recently added it to the list of groups it is supplying with weapons. Part of the recently-formed Levant Front in Aleppo.

    • Islamic Front

Ideology: Sunni Islamism, Sunni jihadism. One of the main rebel factions alongside the FSA and al-Nusra. Merger of two major Islamist coalitions – Syrian Islamic Liberation Front and Syrian Islamic Front; the latter was generally more hardline than the former. Its Aleppo branches (dominated by al-Tawhid) have united and are part of the recently-formed Levant Front in that governorate. Seven constituent groups:

      • Al-Tawhid Brigade

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Originally part of the FSA, it left to join the Syrian Islamic Liberation Front in 2012. Joined the Islamic Front along with most of the SILF in 2013. One of the more “moderate” Islamic Front groups.

        • Northern Storm Brigade

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Founded as a secular smuggling group in the FSA. Lost most of its members to fighting with ISIS and to defections; the remainder joined the Tawhid Brigade, but unlike others who have joined the Islamic Front and its subfactions, they still consider themselves part of the Free Syrian Army.

      • Ahrar ash-Sham

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Leader of the former Syrian Islamic Front. Ideologically similar to al-Qaeda, but more moderate in tactics and less internationally-focused. Appears to be the dominant leader of the Islamic Front.

      • Suqour al-Sham Brigade

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Leader of the former Syrian Islamic Liberation Front. Its founder originally expressed support for a relatively moderate Islamic state with protection for minorities; that position seems to have been forgotten in the Islamic Front merger, although Suqour al-Sham is still more “moderate” than Ahrar ash-Sham. Its numbers have dwindled lately due to its fighters joining other groups.

      • Jaysh al-Islam

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Not jihadist, but fiercely sectarian, especially in regard to Alawites. Its central brigade was part of the SILF until that organization’s merger into the Islamic Front.

      • Liwa al-Haqq (Homs)

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Not to be confused with the Idlib-based group of the same name (see Muhajirin wa-Ansar Alliance below). It was one of the more “moderate” groups of the former SIF before the Islamic Front merger.

      • Ansar al-Sham

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. It was part of the SIF before the Islamic Front.

      • Kurdish Islamic Front

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Although there are Kurds fighting in Islamist groups, this particular formation seems to be more of a puppet used by Ahrar ash-Sham to make the Islamic Front seem less sectarian.

    • Ajnad al-Sham Islamic Union

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Wants a solidly Islamic state, but in favor of protection of minorities. Led by Damascus-area religious scholars.

    • Alwiya al-Furqan

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Like the Al-Tawhid Brigade and Suqour al-Sham, it enjoys good relations with moderates and hardliners alike.

    • Sham Legion

Ideology: moderate Sunni Islamism. Many members split from the Shields of the Revolution Council, although the Sham Legion is still close to the Muslim Brotherhood.

    • Authenticity and Development Front

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Its Aleppo branch is part of the recently-formed Levant Front in that city. Part of a Salafi trend that is politically conservative but distinctly anti-jihadist; close to the Saudi system. It has received US support, at least at one point.

    • Harakat Nour al-Din al-Zinki

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Part of the recently-formed Levant Front in Aleppo. Former member of the Al-Tawhid Brigade, the Army of Mujahideen, and the Authenticity and Development Front. It has been known to kidnap people for ransom. Recently, however, it has moderated its stance and has started receiving US assistance.

    • Fastaqim Kama Umirta Gathering

Ideology: Sunni Islamism. Part of the recently-formed Levant Front in Aleppo. Formerly part of the Army of Mujahideen and before that the FSA.

    • Al-Nusra Front

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. An affiliate of al-Qaeda. Compared to ISIS (see below), al-Nusra is more focused on fighting the regime than enforcing Sharia law. As a result, as well as the fact that it is seen as more home-grown than the Iraq-based ISIS, al-Nusra is vastly more popular among the Syrian rebel population than ISIS. Despite its better reputation, al-Nusra has still participated in some sectarian massacres and is still very much an extremist organization. It is also decidedly more reluctant than the Islamic Front and the moderate rebels to fight ISIS. Recently it has intensified crackdowns on Western-backed moderates. Some notable subgroups:

      • Suqour al-Ezz

Mostly made up of Saudi jihadis. Operated as an independent jihadist group, neutral in the ISIS-rebel conflict, until joining al-Nusra in 2014. It remains neutral in the ISIS-rebel conflict.

      • Liwa Ansar al-Khilafa

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Formerly part of Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar. Known to be close to ISIS and to Junud al-Sham. Possibly connected to Hizb-ut-Tahrir, an international organization that is mostly non-violent but advocates the eventual conquest of the world by fundamentalist Islam; it’s illegal in many countries.

      • Kata’ib Junud al-Haq

Has wavered between al-Nusra and ISIS.

    • Ansar al-Deen Front

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Subgroups:

      • Harakat Sham al-Islam

Mostly made up of Moroccans. Neutral in the ISIS-rebel conflict.

      • Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar (the last two are older logos)

From Chechnya, Russia, where its parent organization, the Caucasus Emirate (an al-Qaeda affiliate) is waging an insurgency. Originally formed part of ISIS (see below), but left ISIS after ISIS was expelled from al-Qaeda.

        • Green Battalion

Mostly made up of Saudis. Neutral in the ISIS-rebel conflict. Formerly one of the four subgroups of the Ansar al-deen Front, it was absorbed into Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar in October 2014.

      • Harakat Fajr Sham al-Islamiya

Mostly made up of Syrians.

    • Jamaat Jund al-Qawqaz

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Formerly an FSA group named Free Circassians. Like Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar, it is affiliated to the Caucasus Emirate in Russia, which is an al-Qaeda affiliate. Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Jaysh al Khilafatu Islamiya

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Expelled from Jaish al-Muhajireen wal-Ansar for allegedly alienating the populace; has fought with JMWA.

    • Kateeba al-Kawthar

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Possibly linked to al-Qaeda.

    • Muthanna Islamic Movement

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Close to al-Nusra.

    • Liwa al-Qadisiya al-Islamiya (Deir ez-Zor)

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Close to al-Nusra; has fought ISIS. It does not appear to be connected to the Daraa-based group of the same name.

    • Liwa al-Qadisiya al-Islamiya (Daraa)

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Close to al-Nusra, but has also displayed ISIS imagery. Not to be confused with the above Deir ez-Zor based group.

    • Imam Bukhari Battalion

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Made up of Uzbeks. Pledged loyalty to the Afghan Taliban in November 2014.

    • Jaysh Muhammad in Bilad al-Sham

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Close to both al-Nusra and ISIS and thus neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Saraya ash-Sham

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Group of the One and Only

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Junud al-Sham

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Not to be confused with Jund al-Sham. Made up of Chechen fighters. Close to the Group of the One and Only and to Liwa Ansar al-Khilafa (a part of al-Nusra). Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Muhajirin wa-Ansar Alliance

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict. Three subgroups:

      • Liwaa al-Umma

Originally set up as part of the FSA (see above) by a Libyan veteran of the war against Colonel Gaddafi, Mahdi al-Harati; it had a moderate agenda. Sometime after al-Harati returned to Libya, the group turned jihadist.

      • Jund al-Aqsa

Contains many foreign fighters. Formerly part of al-Nusra and possibly ISIS at one point. Currently it is closer to al-Nusra. Along with al-Nusra, it has clashed with moderate groups on more than one occasion.

      • Liwa al-Haqq (Idlib)

Not to be confused with the Homs-based group of the same name (see Islamic Front above).

    • Free Iraqi Army

Ideology: Sunni Islamism, Saddamist (Iraq-style, as opposed to Syrian-style) neo-Ba’athism? Based in Iraq. Its relationship with al-Qaeda and ISIS is unclear.

    • Ghuraba al-Sham (jihadist group)

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Not to be confused with the moderate group of the same name (see Free Syrian Army above). Mostly made up of Turks. Formerly had ties to Syria’s Military Intelligence Directorate. Has been active in Lebanon and Iraq. Close to Fatah al-Islam.

    • Jund al-Sham

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Lebanese Palestinian group. Neutral in the rebel-ISIS conflict.

    • Fatah al-Islam

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Unrelated to the more well-known Fatah. A Lebanese Palestinian al-Qaeda affiliate. Split from Fatah al-Intifada in 2006.

    • Abdullah Azzam Brigades

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Active in various Middle Eastern countries. Closely connected with al-Qaeda.

    • Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Based in Pakistan. Close to, but not affiliated with, al-Qaeda. At least one faction has declared loyalty to ISIS.

    • Ansar al-Islam

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Based in Iraq. Close to, but not affiliated with, al-Qaeda. Most of its members defected to ISIS in August 2014; the remainder disbanded. It had a Syrian contingent named Ansar al-Sham (not to be confused with the Islamic Front faction of the same name), which was/is close to the Ansar al-Deen Front and remains active and independent of ISIS.

    • East Turkestan Islamic Movement

Ideology: Sunni jihadism, Uyghur nationalism. Based in Xinjiang (“East Turkestan”), China, where it is involved in an insurgency. Al-Qaeda affiliate.

    • weapons and financial support from
      • Qatar
      • Saudi Arabia
      • Turkey
      • USA
      • UK
      • France
      • Kuwait
  • Islamic State (originally Islamic State of Iraq; from April 2013 to June 2014, known as Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant/ISIL or Islamic State of Iraq and Syria/ISIS)

Ideology: Sunni jihadism. Based in Iraq. Merger of various jihadist groups; has been the main Iraqi insurgent group since 2006. Originally one of two al-Qaeda affiliates active in Syria (the other being al-Nusra, see above), ISIS was expelled from al-Qaeda in 2014 due to conflict with other jihadist groups in the Syrian opposition. ISIS is known for enforcing strict Sharia law and insisting that it alone is the sole legitimate Islamic organization. It currently controls significant portions of Syria and Iraq and has received some pledges of allegiance in North Africa and Pakistan. Some of the notable subgroups:

    • Al-Khansaa Brigade

Composed of women. They specialize in enforcing Sharia laws that apply to women.

    • Lions of the Caliphate

Led by an Egyptian.

    • Katiba al-Bittar al-Libi

Made up of Libyan volunteers.

    • Liwa Dawoud

Defected first from Suqour al-Sham, and then from Jaysh al-Sham (a defunct split from Suqour al-Sham that insisted on neutrality with ISIS).

  • Kurds and allies
    • People’s Protection Committees (YPG)

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism. Nominally the armed forces of the Kurdish Supreme Committee; effectively the armed wing of the dominant Democratic Union Party (PYD). Has been used by the PYD to stifle dissent.

      • Women’s Protection Units

The female wing of the YPG.

    • Syriac Military Council

Ideology: Syriac interests. Connected to the Syriac Union Party.

    • Sutoro

Ideology: Syriac interests. The security/police counterpart of the Syriac Military Council. Unlike the SMC, it is directly affiliated with the Syriac Union Party.

    • Jabhat al-Akrad (the third logo is from its days in the FSA)

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism. Originally part of the FSA; expelled in 2013 due to closeness to the Democratic Union Party/People’s Protection Committees.

    • Asayiş

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism. Name for the intelligence/security service of the Kurdish Supreme Committee. Also the name of Iraqi Kurdistan’s intelligence/security service.

    • People’s Defense Force

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, democratic socialism (Leninism and Maoism historically). The military wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party.

    • Party of Free Life of Kurdistan

Ideology: Kurdish nationalism, democratic socialism. A political-military organization affiliated to the Turkey-based Kurdistan Workers’ Party (see above). Based in Iran, where it is engaged in an insurgency.

Black Sunna Brigade, Fallujah of Horan Brigade Black War Operations Room Ghariya Shield Brigade

Bulbajer’s Top 10 Medal of Honor: European Assault Guns

November 30, 2009

For more information, see Medal of Honor: European Assault Guide. This list is not judging on stats but on Bulbajer’s personal preference.

  1. MP40
  2. M1 Garand
  3. StG-44
  4. BAR
  5. Winchester M1893/97
  6. Lee-Enfield No. 4 scoped
  7. Gewehr-43
  8. M1 Garand scoped
  9. M1 Thompson
  10. M1911

:)

Bulbajer’s Top 10 Air Ride Vehicles

August 13, 2009

For more info, see Kirby Air Ride Vehicles. This list is not judging on stats but Bulbajer’s personal preference.

  1. Dragoon
  2. Flight Warpstar
  3. Hydra
  4. Shadow Star
  5. Winged Star
  6. Wagon Star
  7. Turbo Star
  8. Meta Knight
  9. Wheelie Scooter
  10. Jet Star

:)

About my site

June 30, 2009

Welcome to Bulbajer’s Encyclopedia! I feature discussion of politics, video games, religion, geography, flags, history, and the Web! Pages coming soon. Please stay tuned!
I prefer to put my information on pages rather than blog posts, so look to the right to see the stuff on my site.
:)


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