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Assad’s Jihadist Allies
September 24, 2015 @ 12:30 pm - 2:00 pmFree
While Media and western observers have mainly focused on the Sunni Jihadists moving to Syria to fight Assad or to join the “Islamic State” and fight Syrian opposition factions, other Jihadists – Shi’a ones – have been deploying in larger numbers in the country to defend Assad and “protect” his regime.
Whether from Iraq, from Afghanistan and Pakistan, or from the well-trained and equipped Hezbollah of Lebanon, the Shi’a fighters were mobilized by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards and sent to fight in most strategic battles around Damascus the capital, in Deraa in the South and in Aleppo in the North.
Who are those “Shi’a Jihadists”? Why do they fight to defend the Assad regime? What are the ideological and political justifications for their fight? How does Iran recruit them? And What are the consequences of their “presence in Syria”?
Ziad Majed is an associate professor of Middle East Studies and Comparative Politics at the American University of Paris. He is the author of “Syria, the orphaned revolution” (2013 in Arabic and 2014 in French).
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