Gains by Assad and Islamic State Leave Syrian Rebels Down, but Not Out

Iraqi security forces hold a flag of the Islamic State group they captured during an operation outside Amirli, Iraq, Sept. 1, 2014 (AP photo).
Iraqi security forces hold a flag of the Islamic State group they captured during an operation outside Amirli, Iraq, Sept. 1, 2014 (AP photo).
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IRBIL, Iraq—Syria’s moderate rebels are in trouble. Nearly encircled in their main bastion of Aleppo by the forces of Bashar al-Assad’s government and under pressure by Islamic State fighters, they are also weakened by internal rifts and little external support. Yet they are still fighting back, and the strength of their enemies may be exaggerated. The most immediate threat is coming from militants of the Islamic State—also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS—emboldened by their looting of American weaponry earlier this summer and an influx of Sunni fighters in Iraq. The Islamic State recently took […]

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