Koert Debeuf writes: When I read the piece of Aron Lund, ‘the FSA doesn’t exist’, I was utterly surprised. Of course the FSA does exist. And it is changing rapidly.Over the last few months, the FSA has transformed itself from a loose structure into a functioning organization. In fact, what Lund describes is an era of the FSA that no longer exists. It ignores the developments of the last several months and the present reality on the ground.
Last month, I visited Northern Syria three times with the Free Syrian Army (FSA). I spoke to many generals who had defected from the Syrian Army, to commanders on the ground,to people in the headquarters of the FSA and to military-civilian organizers of humanitarian aid of all parts of Syria. I also spent many hours with Dr. Brigadier General Salim Idriss, Chief of Staff of the FSA; I was in the middle of a battle at Quweris airport, then one of the main front lines.
Many points Lund is making, were correct three months ago. But not now. Col. Riaad Assad for example is completely out of the picture, whatever he himself might say. Another example is Qasem Saadeddin. He did indeed try to create some unity in Homs and had difficulties in doing so. But that too is history. Today he is a Commander of one of the five fronts under the umbrella of the FSA and he is working very closely with Chief of Staff Salim Idriss. It is also not true that Idriss would not use the ‘brand’ FSA. One example is the fact that he recently started his own twitter and Facebook account as well as one for the headquarters, using @FSAHQ. [Continue reading…]
Beneath Debeuf’s post is a response by Lund.