American “ninja” bombs have struck two Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham commanders in the town of Atmeh in northern Idleb on Dec. 3, 2019.
Images were distributed of the remains of the bomb, which had blades that breached the roof of the vehicle carrying the commander, which killed him and the driver sitting beside him, in the second use of this type of weapon since 2017.
Abou Ahmed al-Muhajir
Abou Ahmed al-Muhajir was killed in a strike on Tuesday. He had been a trainer at Tahrir al-Sham’s central military academy, according to a paper that he had been carrying for passage across checkpoints and which was found beside his body.
Little is known about him, except that he was a trainer of the elite teams in the group, which were called the Red Headbands.
The name “Red Headbands” is connected with all special operations Tahrir al-Sham has announced, and it promotes them as prominent fighters who are trained in all martial skills and who work “behind enemy lines” and from time to time their name comes up in attacks announced by the group that target Assad forces positions around Idleb province and the Hama and Aleppo countrysides.
Elite fighters receive training from the “Islamic Blackwater,” known as “Malhama Tactical,” founded by fighters who came from Russia and other former Soviet states, most of them who received training in the special forces in their countries. They are headed by Abou Salman al-Belarussi, who was a former assistant in the Russian special forces.
Abou al-Khair al-Masri
The first person to be targeted by American “ninja” bombs was Ahmed Hassan Abou al-Khair al-Masri, who was killed in February 2017, in a strike carried out by the America intelligence agency, near the al-Mastouma camp in the Idleb countryside. At that time, they had not revealed the existence of the secret weapon.
Media reported that Masri had been a commander in Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham, which was denied by the group. His full name was Abdullah Mohamed Ragab Abdel Rahman, and was born in northern Egypt in 1957.
The United States put his name on the terrorism list in 2005. He entered Syria in 2016 and jihadist accounts said that he had been responsible for logistical matters and movements for al-Qaeda operatives who carried out foreign missions. He worked at the end of the 1980s with a group of supporters of al-Qaeda’s ideology in Egypt.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.