Two unconfirmed amateur videos posted to YouTube appear to show an American fighting alongside rebel forces in Syria against Bashar al-Assad.The first, posted by Abu Adam Hourani on Jan. 15, identifies the man as U.S. mujahid — short for the Arabic plural form mujahideen, or “people doing jihad” — wearing what appears to be a military uniform and speaking English in an American accent, taunting the Assad regime.
The group he is with has been identified by BuzzFeed as Jabhet al-Nusra — a group designated as a terrorist organisation by the U.S. State Department.
“Bashar Assad, your days are numbered,” he says in the 42 second video. “You are going down in flames. You should just quit now, while you can, and leave. You are going to die, no matter what. Where you go we will find you and kill you. Do you understand?”
The second video, uploaded on Feb. 12 by a different user, is described as follows:
In this footage, an American with a Salafi (or Amish) beard is seen sitting in a Jeep next to an Arab fighter rejoicing for having shot down a Syrian military helicopter.
As rebels appear to be looting the downed helicopter, the camera turns back towards what appears to be the same man, celebrating the attack:
“Yes, we smoked the motherf——, didn’t we? Hell yeah. We smoked about, I don’t know, 10-20,” he says with a smile and laugh.
Although it’s difficult to make out all the words, an Arabic translator tells me that the most entertaining piece is when the driver yells “F— Bashar al-Assad!” The passenger talks over him but the driver can still be heard disparaging al-Assad’s mother.
As the Times of Israel reports, it is unclear how many Americans are fighting in the civil war against Assad, but the speaker in the videos would not be the only one fighting alongside Syrian rebels.
Matthew VanDyke, an American and self-proclaimed freedom fighter, participated in the uprising against Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, then fought in Syria before returning to the United States.
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