Free Syrian Army members, under the name of the Farouq Brigades, run during a combat training in the Syrian town of Sarmada, in Idlib province, on July 9, 2012. Abdo / REUTERS
On Patrol In Syria With Assad’s Most Diligent Enemies -- Rania Abouzeid/ Marshamsheh, Time
Hajji Zaki crept along the partially destroyed unpainted walls in the hallway of the single-storey house, ducking to stay out of sight of regime snipers stationed at a large outpost some 500 m away. Two of the rebels he commands in his unit of the Farouq Brigades moved ahead of him.
The father of five had his left arm outstretched in a gesture that indicated he wanted his men to stay low. His right hand clutched a Kalashnikov. Dusty chunks of smashed cinder blocks, the detritus of what was once walls, littered the floors of the unfurnished house, crunching underfoot. “We use this place to snipe from,” Hajji Zaki, 38, said as he crouched in a doorway. “You see these doors,” he said, gesturing to a pale gray metal door still in good condition. “That’s my work.” Before he was a local Farouq commander, Hajji Zaki was a local metalsmith.
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My Comment: An "on the ground" report on the Syrian civil war from a rebel group's perspective.