Liwa’a al-Hamad: Harakat al-Nujaba’s Latest Shia Militia in Syria
Liwa’a al-Hamad’s Shadowy Origins
Harakat Hizballah al-Nujaba (The Movement for the Party of God the Outstanding. A.K.A. Harakat al-Nujaba), a front group created by Kata’ib Hizballah and Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq to route fighters to Syria, has created another Syria-based militia. In August, Harakat al-Nujaba threatened U.S. interests if Syria was attacked by U.S. forces and has been a leading Iranian proxy front-organization used in the war against Syria’s rebels. The front’s newest Syria-based organization goes by the name of Liwa’a al-Hamad (The Praise Brigade). Nevertheless, little information about Liwa’a al-Hamad has been available via open source material.
This is not the first front militia created by Harakat al-Nujaba for activities in Syria. In fact, their main fighting organization in Syria is named Liwa’a ‘Ammar Ibn Yasir. This group is quite active and is currently operating in Aleppo and Damascus in cooperation with Lebanese Hizballah and Liwa’a Zulfiqar. Additionally, Harakat al-Nujaba has also created Liwa’a al-Imam al-Hasan al-Mujtaba, a group which has been active in Rif Dimashq, particularly the East Ghouta area. Nonetheless, unlike its sister groups, Liwa’a al-Hamad is just starting to be given a more public profile. Relatively little has been released about the organization, its fighters, leadership, and/or areas of operation in Syria. Thus far, Liwa’a al-Hamad has not created its own accessible social media pages (particularly on Facebook or YouTube). Its broader exposure to the public only came in late November via official pages run by Harakat al-Nujaba’s Liwa’a ‘Ammar Ibn Yasir.
Liwa’a al-Hamad’s existence was first announced in a caption on a YouTube video from July, 2013. The video showed a funeral procession for dead members of Liwa’a ‘Ammar Ibn Yasir. However, no photos of its fighters or operations were posted online, nor were any Liwa’a al-Hamad members or symbols shown in the July video. The group was very rarely mentioned on other Shia Islamist militia social media pages. Only at the end of October were specialized images for the group posted on well-hidden social media sites. Interestingly, (at the time of this writing) none of these photographs were re-released on the interconnected web of Shia militia Facebook pages.
The full article: http://jihadology.net/2013/12/21/hizballah-cavalcade-liwaa-al-hamad-harakat-al-nujabas-latest-shia-militia-in-syria/