In September of 2012, the mainstream press began reporting that the Syrian rebellion was relying increasingly upon fundamentalist militias to fight against the despotic character of the Syrian regime. It became clear that the formation of these groups were at the behest of three Gulf Middle East monarchies: Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and to a lesser degree, the United Arab Emirates.
In very general terms, the Gulf monarchies have financially supported dozens of militias in the Mediterranean Middle East (i.e. the Levant), have facilitated their access to American, Israeli and Turkish weaponry and have created geographic ‘safe-havens’ where these militias can retreat to and organize from.
Although there is infighting between the various militias (often described as ‘a civil-war within a civil-war’), the militias are also the main source of war-experienced recruits for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The nightmare scenario of a continuously strengthening ISIL is a problem that can only be solved in Abu Dhabi, Doha and Riyadh.