Update on Syrian Rebel Media Coordinators

Posted: 17th September 2013
Update on Syrian Rebel Media Coordinators

You might recall our Guide to Syrian Rebel Media Spokespeople and PR published back in March. Impending foreign entanglements led us to revisit the network of individuals within Syria that shape our understanding of the conflict.

Particularly, we look at the voices representing rebel factions.

A few high level notes:

  • Since our original analysis in March, statements on the Free Syrian Army are largely narrated by three key figures : Louay al-Mokdad, Kassem Saadeddine, and Fahd al-Masri.
  • The overlap of jihadists and the Free Syrian Army is very real : Mosaab Abu Qatada, one of the spokesman called out in our original guide, is cited as a representative of both Al Nusra Front and the Free Syrian Army.
  • Ahfad al-Rasul, a brigade of FSA not referenced in our original guide, emerged as a visible entity in the media via its spokesman Ibrahim al-Idelbi . The group is reportedly funded by the Qatari government and partnered in the conflict with Ahrar al Sham and the Islamic Kurdish Front alongside Al Nusra. You can find an excellent summary of the organization and its emergence here.

Aggregating this group of spokespeople in Recorded Future (we’ve added 15 new names from the above network to our preexisting list) allows those of us at a distance to read the pulse of sentiment on the ground in Syria.

Examples of statements include claims from al-Mokdad (FSA) that chemical weapons are being prepped for delivery into Iraq, Saadeddine (FSA) claiming ‘regular army is advancing in the Ghouta area by killing civilians by aircraft and chemical weapons’, and Abu Qatada (Nusra/FSA) claiming “a poisonous gas attack [September 12] injured 15 people in the Damascus suburb of Jobar.”

If you’re closely following Syria, send us a message (contact at recordedfuture dot com) and we’ll hook you up with the list of rebel spokespeople for deeper investigation.