He says he’s left the Pentagon’s program. His comrades confirm he’s been missing. Al-Qaeda says he was theirs all along.
The commander of Division 30, one of the U.S.-trained Syrian rebel groups, has allegedly defected from the train-and-equip program, according to a message he posted on social media, amid rumors (and denials) that he may have actually gone over to Jabhat al-Nusra, the official al-Qaeda franchise in his war-ravaged country.
Division 30 has formally acknowledged that it lost contact with Major Anas Obaid (a.k.a. Abu Zayd) in the Aleppo suburbs where he, along with 71 other rebels graduated from the New Syrian Force, as the Pentagon proxy army is known, reportedly were dispatched on September 19, after completing their training in Turkey. Division 30 also addressed speculation that Abu Zayd flipped to the jihadists and says that if this information is confirmed, it will try him for treason.