Some Lebanese citizens are fighting in Syria against “takfiris” or waging “jihad” against the “infidel regime.” Abu Ali, who spoke to NOW under an alias, is one of those who went to Syria to join the ranks of the armed opposition. He told NOW about his daily life as a fighter in Syria. Abu Ali emphasized that the idea to head to Syria was his alone, but despite reservations he and his friend had about joining the fight in Syria, they ultimately chose to take up arms. “We used to encourage one another and we decided to go to Syria during the Qusayr battle."

He said they both met with a group from the Liwa al-Tawhid Brigade after arriving. “[Tawhid] is active in Aleppo and which had come to provide the Qusayr rebels with assistance. Following the Qusayr battle, we went with them to Aleppo where we joined one of the Tawhid Brigade battalions.” Still, Abu Ali insisted he did not help any Syrian opposition fighter to cross the border into Lebanon, and explained that rebels are being smuggled in at their own expense by several well-known smugglers. Although Abu Ali was a member of Liwa al-Tawhid Brigade’s al-Bab Martyrs Battalion and fought alongside the Aleppo rebels for more than two months, he decided to return to Lebanon, never thinking about going to Syria again. [Link]