[Editor’s note: This airstrike against the leader of Al-Nusra is Russia’s direct response to the attack on a group of Russian military policemen two weeks ago, an attack that saw them surrounded for hours while they had to fight for their lives against Al-Nusra forces. Eventually they were rescued, but the incident really stirred up the Russians and as reporter Murad Gavdiev described it on RT today, sent their surveillance and aerial reconnaissance forces ‘into overdrive’ looking for the head of Al-Nusra. Well, they found him, and they bombed him, sending a clear message to both Al-Nusra and all the other assorted rebel/mercenary bands. Ian]
Al Nusra Chief in Critical Condition Following Russian Airstrike: MoD
Russia’s Aerospace Forces have critically wounded HTS leader and former Al Nusra Front ’emir’ Abu Mohammad al-Julani in Syria, and killed 12 field commanders of the terrorist group which controls Idlib Governorate.
“As a result of the strike, Jabhat al-Nusra leader Abu Mohammad al-Julani received multiple heavy fragmentation wounds and, having lost his hand, is in critical condition, according to several independent sources,” Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Wednesday, Sputnik reported.
“Along with numerous (about 50) security guards, 12 field commanders of Jabhat al-Nusra, including the closest aide of Julani, were also killed,” he added.
The al-Nusra Front changed its name and merged with other Syrian terrorist groups to create Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS); however, the Russian Defense Ministry continues to use the group’s original name.
Russia, along with Iran and local forces, has been assisting the Syrian government in its fight against the terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the Arab country since 2011.
Moscow has been conducting an anti-terrorist operation in Syria since September 30, 2015, at the behest of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
His studies in history and background in the media industry have given him a keen insight into the use of mass media as a creator of conflict in the modern world.
His favored areas of study include state-sponsored terrorism, media manufactured reality and the role of intelligence services in manipulation of populations and the perception of events.