After clashes have recently taken place between "The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant" and Jubhat an-Nusra against the Free Syrian Army in opposition controlled places in North and Eastern Syria, it is right to say that the political landscape in Syria has evolved into infighting, executions, terrorist attacks and torture. This situation has led to thousands of Syrians escaping the violence in their country. This also requires us to talk about what is commonly called "al-Qaeda in Syria".
What is commonly called "Al Qaeda" are in fact groups of fighters that name themselves "the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant", "Jubhat an-Nusra", "Islamic Haraka al-Sham al-Ahrar", "Tawhid Batallion", and other names. The size of those armed groups is estimated to be in the thousands. Among them are Syrians, Arabs from other countries such as Libya, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, but also from Europe such as Great Britain. These armed groups are fighting what they consider to be "infidels", referring to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad's regime in Syria. Nevertheless they also experience an "inner struggle" about (al-Qaeda's) strategy and leadership after the leader of Jubhat an-Nusra, Abu Muhammed al-Jawlani, denounced the decision of the leader of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi) to merge the two groups into one. One should stop for a moment to try to understand and ask; who benefits actually the most in supporting those groups of terrorists in Syria?
Media outlets have reported regularly that the Gulf States and their most important allies in the Middle East (Turkey and America) have played a big role in supporting the rebels and opposition in Syria. Rebel fighters are recruited, trained, armed, and then sent to different parts of Syria. We should also not forget the support they get through media, politics, arms and finance. Such as fundraising, private bank accounts hold by official institutions used to transfer money, Islamic charity institutions, public figures and TV-channels. Qatar and Saudi Arabia are among the Gulf countries most active in supporting the Syrian revolution. Both are not against foreign intervention in Syria, as a matter of fact they call for intervention to take place. Moreover many Al-Qaeda leaders went from Iraq to Syria after the security operation "revenge of the martyrs" by government forces led to escalations with existing terrorist groups. This triggered those groups to transfer fighters and arms through the Iraqi-Syrian border into Syria.
Besides observing the numerous acts of sectarian violence in Syria in which the armed opposition participated, such as sectarian fighting in Homs between Sunnis and Alawites or Hama and neighboring Shiite villages such as Kefraya. The killing of members of the Sunni community in Syria at the hands of terrorists also takes place, such as the bombing of the Faculty of Architecture in Aleppo or the explosion that killed Sunni scholar al-Bouti, etc. These groups call for the establishment of an Islamic Caliphate instead of a civil or democratic state. And they have indeed been able to control certain areas around the city of Aleppo and Northern Syria while seeking to extend their influence to other regions. They consider themselves to be a (legitimate) governing body, accepted and responsible for ordaining the life of ordinary Syrians.
So will the current situation and the quick changes of political events be linked to the fate of Syria and the Syrian people? And will the presence of al-Qaeda in Syria give the United States a green light for a military intervention, similar to what was done to Iraq?