Here's Why 10,000 Syrian Militants Chose to Fight Nusra Front on Russia's Side
It appears that thousands of Syrian opposition fighters now seek to side with the government against the terrorist group Jabhat Fatah al Sham are merely motivated by the desire to join the "winning team".
Earlier Sheikh Saleh Nuaimi, chief of Syria’s National Reconciliation Committee, told Sputnik that over 10,000 militants in the Syrian provinces of Hama, Homs and Idlib are ready and willing to help the government forces battle the terrorist group known as Jabhat Fatah al Sham or Al-Nusra Front.
Sheikh Nuaimi also pointed out that many members of the so-called moderate Syrian opposition are tired of fighting and seek to make peace with the government.
"I will tell you this, even if you might not believe me: [the armed opposition] wants reconciliation and wants to put an end to the war, and over 90 percent of them think that way.
They want to be granted amnesty and to return to a peaceful life, but they are wary and display a lack of trust. Our mission is to create a team that will help foster that trust," Nuaimi said.
However, Oleg Glazunov, a military analyst and associate professor of the Sociology and Political Science Department at the Russian Plekhanov Economic University, told Sputnik Radio that the militants’ decision to side with Damascus is a pragmatic one, and that such moves are fairly common to the Middle East.
"This is just like the Middle East. People there like power: might makes right.
Russia displayed its power and showed that it can successfully resolve problems in the Middle East. Russia is steadily building up its reputation.
Meanwhile, the US is gradually losing its reputation, as the siege of Mosul lasted for nearly a whole year and yet they still can’t completely capture the city," Glazunov said.
He also remarked that for many militants who previously fought for Daesh, the choice is now to either die in battle or to join the winning side.
"What’s important for us is to end this war as soon as possible," Glazunov added.
Syria has been in the grip of a civil war for over six years. Government forces are fighting against Syrian opposition groups, who strive to overthrow President Bashar Assad, as well as numerous extremist and terrorist groups, such as Daesh and Jabhat Fatah al Sham, both of which are outlawed in Russia.