Al-Qaida Advises the Arab Spring: Abu Basir’s Scrapbook

In my previous posts on al-Qaida scholars advising the Arab Spring (here, here, here and here), we have frequently come across the Syrian-British Abu Basir al-Tartusi. His advice to the people of the Arab world trying to overthrow their dictators has often been at odds with that of his fellow radical ideologues, as we have seen, since Abu Basir frequently encourages fighters to be lenient with others or even scolds them for using violent methods too recklessly. As we saw in my previous post on Yemen, other scholars have criticised Abu Basir for this. Similarly, when Abu Basir published a fatwa on his website in February in which he expressed support for the (non-Islamist) Free Syrian Army fighting against the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Asad and not for the much more overtly Islamic Jabhat Nusrat al-Sham, he was criticised for this by Abu l-Mundhir al-Shinqiti on the Shari’a Forum

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