Last week the United States government announced that it would suspend nonlethal aid to Syrian rebel groups fighting in the north. This came after the Islamic Front, a collection of Islamist Syrian rebel groups, took over facilities controlled by the Free Syrian Army, the Western-backed rebel alliance.
The attack, which resulted in the seizure of nonlethal equipment supplied by the United States, reportedly forced Gen. Salim Idris, commander of the Supreme Military Council (SMC) of the Free Syrian Army and one of the main U.S. partners in Syria, to flee. The United States later stated that Idris had been in Turkey during the Islamic Front’s attack.
Secretary of State John Kerry maintained a cautiously optimistic tone in an interview with ABC over the weekend, saying that “the moderate opposition has been united up until recently, and we believe they still can be united.” The United States is still “aiming towards the Geneva II conference,” a peace conference scheduled to take place in January.