Anti-Alawite massacre sponsored by Gulf donorsOctober 17, 2013
Human Rights Watch has issued a blistering report on war crimes committed by rebel forces against Alawite civilians in Syria’s coastal region. First, a quick summary from Reuters:
Rights watchdog: Syrian rebels killed 190 civilians in August dawn raid
October 10, 2013 | Oliver Holmes | Reuters
BEIRUT (Reuters) – Syrian rebels killed at least 190 civilians and took more than 200 hostage during an offensive in Latakia province in August, Human Rights Watch said on Friday, in what it calls the first evidence of crimes against humanity by opposition forces.
HRW said many of the dead had been executed by militant groups, some linked to al Qaeda, who overran army positions at dawn on August 4 and then moved into 10 villages nearby where members of President Bashar al-Assad’s Alawite sect lived.
In its first government-sanctioned trip into Syria during the 2-1/2-year conflict, New York-based HRW has documented a series of sectarian mass killings by Assad’s foes during a broader campaign in which Western-backed rebels took part…
Now for the money angle. The HRW report itself explains the rebels’ financial donors are “principally from Gulf countries,” specifically Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the U.A.E., who responded to fundraising appeals to bankroll the “Operation to Liberate the Syrian Coast.” The donor bundlers often used Twitter to solicit donations, provide updates about their efforts, and to thank major financial backers. Of the bundlers whose nationalities are specified, most are Kuwaiti. The report names Sheikh Hajjej al-Ajami as one of the most prominent financiers of the coastal slaughter, and the organization Bunyan al-Marsous as a principal umbrella funding group.
Previous Money Jihad coverage has shown that apart from the financing from Qatar (here and here), Saudi Arabia, and Kuwait, rebels in Syria are also funded by kidnap-for-ransom schemes, donations from Western-based Islamic charities and relief organizations (here and here), theft (here, here, and here), welfare payments to Western-based Muslims who have journeyed to Syria, covert Western military aid, extortion schemes in Iraq, and jizya against non-Muslim Syrians. The money, as the Latakia massacre illustrates, has only fueled the conflict.