A video published online Tuesday showed a Syrian regime brigadier trying to recruit young men to join the fight for President Bashar al-Assad in exchange for government jobs and salary raises.
“Whoever comes with us should consider himself a government employee and his salary will be increased by 50 percent,” Brigadier Mohammed Khadour said.
“And for those who choose to stay as volunteers, we have ammunitions and arms here for you,” he added.
The brigadier, who was accompanied by Aleppo’s mayor, Mohammed Wahid Akad, a Sunni, made other lucrative promises.
He pledged young men from the Shiite-dominated suburb of Nibl in Aleppo to make their area the capital of Aleppo’s suburbs. “All your demands will be answered.”
Before his address, Khadour was cheered with “Labyka Ya Hussein,” or “Oh hail Hussein.”
Shi’ites highly revere Hussein, who is Prophet Mohammed’s grandson. Hussein and his father Ali, who is also the prophet’s cousin, were seen by Shiites as the right successors in the Caliphate after the prophet’s death.
“We will raise the banner of Hussein in Minigh [a village in Aleppo], and we will fight under his name,” Brigadier Khadour said.
Minigh is currently under opposition fighters’ siege, and the brigadier urged the attendees that “we need to save them.”
“We are the people of martyrdom,” and “we shouldn’t be scared to fight.”
Syria is ruled by minority Allawites, an offshoot of Shiism, over majority Sunnis. President Bashar al-Assad’s regime claims that the rebels fighting against his government are radical Islamists and are terrorists.