Lebanese corporal defects to al-Nusra, denounces Hezbollah
A corporal in the Lebanese army defected and joined the ranks of al-Nusra Front and released a video slamming the military as a Hezbollah tool.
“I am a soldier and I know the assault against the Sunni sect,” Corporal Atef Mohammed Saadeddine said in a Youtube video published on Jul 23, 2014.
The soldiers states the reasons behind his decision to desert the army and join al-Nusra Front in the video.
He lashed out at the resistance, considering it to be assaulting the Sunni youth.
Saadeddine revealed thaat Hezbollah members carry arms at checkpoints and “no one objects.”
“Terrorists are not those who are defending their sect,” he said.
Earlier on Wednesday al-Akhbar newspaper reported that Saadeddine defected his post in the eastern town of Arsal.
He was presumed to be kidnapped or lost before a video of him was circulated on social networking websites.
Al-Akhbar daily said that Saadeddine defected his post at dawn on Tuesday.
Security sources said that the corporal fled his ranks to join al-Nusra rebels.
The sources said that he stole three M16 rifles, military equipment and night vision goggles.
Saadeddine hails from the Khirbet Daoud area in Arsal's outskirts.
The corporal was reportedly assigned to serve on the outskirts between al-Labweh and Arsal as a disciplinary measure for offering sweets and opening fire in the air after a suicide attack in Beirut's southern suburbs was carried out.
The al-Nusra Front, completely unknown before the rebellion in Syria that began two years ago, has been a rebel standard-bearer since mid-2012 when it became the spearhead of the insurgency ahead of the Free Syrian Army.
Arsal, a predominantly Sunni area, backs the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad.
The town lies 12 kilometers from the border with Syria and has been used as a conduit for weapons and rebels to enter Syria, while also serving as a refuge for people fleeing the conflict.
The town has seen a massive influx of refugees as a result of the heavy fighting in Qalamoun.