Al-Qusayr: Salafist Emirate or Frontier of the Future Alawite State?

Qifa Nabki

What exactly is happening in al-Qusayr? I have no idea, but I’m going to tell you what I think anyway, seeing as how the biggest beneficiaries of the media blackout on Syria are the bloggers, tweeters, and other distant readers whose impressionistic musings are based almost entirely on a process of triangulating between other second-hand narratives.

Let’s begin with this report in al-Akhbar, which claims that the Syrian Army and Hizbullah’s attempt to retake al-Qusayr from the Free Syrian Army is meant to prevent the establishment of a fundamentalist Sunni Muslim stronghold on the border of Lebanon and an international war:

Retaking the city would also put an end to the possibility of setting up a hardline Salafi emirate in Qusayr, which would have served as a thorn in the side of Hezbollah and the Shia Lebanese villages of the Hermel region, and could have easily led to a…

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