Al-Qaeda Fighters Join the War in Ukraine

March 16, 2022

Philip C. Johnson

While the world worries that World War 3 could begin at any moment, it seems that the world has already decided to head to Ukraine to join the war effort.  There are lots of people heading to Ukraine at the behest of Ukrainian President Zelensky from a variety of nations, including European nations, the UK and the U.S. But the group that interests me most are fighters coming from Syria. More specifically,  Al-Qaeda fighters from Syria. 

According to several sources, including the independent Arab news source, Al Mayadeen, hundreds of Al-Qaeda  fighters have gone to  Ukraine to join the fight against Russia. These are jihadists from Idlib, Syria – a hotbed of global terrorist. Idlib is where Al-Qaeda and ISIS leaders hide from American drones, though not always successfully. The last two leaders of ISIS were killed here.  

This news that jihadists are joining the war in Ukraine might seem surprising, but it shouldn’t be. The strategy of using these strange bedfellows and identifying them as helpful mercenaries has be used by the West before. The U.S. trained, paid and used the mujahideen in Afghanistan to fight the Russians in the late 1970’s and 1980’s.  These insurgents became Al-Qaeda, led by Osama bin Laden. The Obama administration used Al-Qaeda terrorists to fight the Syrian government for regime change in the 2010’s. These jihadists became ISIS. And now terrorists are being utilized to fight the Russians in Ukraine. They should feel right at home with Ukraine’s Nazi militia, Azov Battalion, in the Donbas, as they share a common ideology. What could possibly go wrong?

I remember sitting in a dusty cafe a few years ago in Beirut with a Syrian source of mine discussing the rise of ISIS. He was explaining to me that sometimes governments makes decisions to use extremist groups to further their global interests. But, he told me, sometimes the monsters you’re using get out of control, as happened with ISIS. “And then,” he said, “The monster chases you.” 

So, to give you the world in a nutshell: The West has employed Nazis and Al-Qaeda to fight against the Russians in Ukraine, Facebook has told you that it’s okay to call for violence against Russians, (sure, they’re backpedaling now, but let’s call it a “test run” for the future when it will be okay to call for violence against other groups), President Zelensky is baiting the U.S. to enter World War 3 and the Saudi’s and the Chinese are working on a world that doesn’t include the U.S. dollar. Sleep well.

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