Syrian-Rebel Teens Sing at Al Qaeda Camp: ‘We Destroyed America With a Civilian Airplane’
(CNSNews.com) - An al Qaeda video posted online in late May and translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) shows masked Muslim teenage boys undergoing military training and indoctrination at an al Qaeda camp inside Syria.
The video shows the teenagers shooting handguns at a large photo of Syrian leader Bashar al-Asad. It also shows them stating that their leader is Abu Bakr al Baghdadi (the head of al Qaeda in Iraq), and then singing joyfully of their desire to overthrow both Asad and his sister Bushra, of the valor of al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri and of al Qaeda’s success in blowing up the World Trade Center towers.
"We destroyed America with a civilian airplane,” the young Syrian rebels sing. “The World Trade Center was turned into rubble. The World Trade Center was turned into rubble.
"If they call me a terrorist, I will consider it an honor,” the teenage Syrian rebels sing. “Our terror is blessed, a divine call. Our terror is blessed, a divine call.
“Our Emir, Ayman [Al-Zawahiri], did not renounce his religion,” they sing, “and all the soldiers have sold their souls to Allah.”
MEMRI reports that the video was posted online on May 25, 2013, and depicts teenagers at al Qaeda’s “Khalifa Youth Camp” in Al Bukamal, Syria. Al Bukamal is the town on the Syrian side of the Iraqi-Syrian border where the Euphrates River crosses from Syria into Iraq.
The video opens with scenes of masked teenage boys getting off a bus and then being handed rifles and rocket-propelled grenades. It then shows them parading with black al Qaeda banners--some of which contain the words “Allahu Akbar” (God is great) in Arabic script. One of the black banners carried by the teens says: “Islamic State of Iraq & Sham”—the tentative union of the al Qaeda groups in Iraq and Syria.
At one point, the video shows the teens being instructed on using a handgun to shoot at a large photograph of the head of Syrian leader Bashar al Asad. At another point, while riding a bus, they joyfully sing that the “state of Islam … will vanquich Bashar and Bushra, the lowlifes and the infidels.”
Bushra, is Bashar al Asad’s sister and the only daughter of former Syrian dictator, Hafez al-Asad. She was married to Syrian Deputy Defense Minister Assef Shawkat, who was killed in a bombing attack in Damascus last year. Bushra has reportedly left Syria and taken up residence in Dubai, where her five children attend school.
Later in the tape, a hooded teen stands in front of a room full of other hooded teens and declares that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq is their “emir” and that they will continue jihad until they achieve victor or martyrdom.
“This is a message from us, the youth of the Khalifa in the frontier land of the Levant to our sheiks, the sheiks of Jihad of the Islamic nation, and especially to our Emir, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi,” says the hooded young man. "We continue to the path of Jihad. We will not lay down our weapons before we attain one of two good things: victory or martyrdom.”
The boys then sing a song in honor of Abu Bakr, al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, the success of al Qaeda’s attack on the World Trade Center towers, and terrorism in general—saying they “consider it an honor” to be called a terrorist.”
"Our leader Ayman is America’s worst nightmare, with the power of faith and our weapon, the PK machine-gun,” they sing, according to the MEMRI translation. “With the power of faith and our weapon, the PK machine-gun.
"We destroyed America with a civilian airplane,” they sing. “The World Trade Center was turned into rubble. The World Trade Center was turned into rubble.
"If they call me a terrorist, I will consider it an honor,” they sing.
In recent days, the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), al Qaeda’s Iraqi affiliate, has been having an internecine dispute with al Qaeda leader Ayman al Zawahiri over ISI’s purported merger with the Al Nusrah Front, an al Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria. In April, as reported by al Jazeera, ISI leader Abu Bakr al Baghdadi said that the Al Nusrah Front had merged with ISI creating a combined group called the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (Sham). This is the group whose banner was carried by the teenage boys at the al Qaeda camp in Al Bukamal. Last week, according to al Jazeera, Zawahiri wrote a letter rejecting the merger and al Baghdadi rejected Zawahiri’s rejection.
President Barack Obama decided last week to begin arming the Syrian rebels.
Syrian leader Bashar al Asad is a member of the Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shia Islam. The CIA World Factbook says 74 percent of the Syrian population is Sunni Muslim, while 16 percent are members of the Alawite, Druze and other Muslims sects, and 10 percent are Christian. Al Qaeda is a Sunni Muslim terrorist group; Asad leads a secularist regime.
Alawites have controlled the Syrian regime since 1970, when, according to the CIA Factbook, Bashar’s father Hafez al Asad “seized power in a bloodless coup and brought political stability to the country.”