“Revolutionary Security was founded two months ago and it’s main mission is to observe the FSA and work with the civilians,” says Capt. Abu Hamdu, chief of Revolutionary Security in Aleppo. “We’re watching and observing the FSA fighters to make sure they don’t make any mistakes dealing with the civilians.”
Attention has long focused on the human rights abuses of the Assad regime and its military, but opposition groups have also come under scrutiny. Most recently, Human Rights Watch released a report that found opposition groups had tortured detainees and committed summary executions and extrajudicial killings.
Far more common, however, are problems with theft. Opposition fighters have been caught looting empty apartments and shops on the front lines and collecting illegal bribes and taxes at checkpoints.
Recognizing the damage such behavior causes to the FSA's image, the group has taken steps to quickly expand Revolutionary Security. In his neighborhood of Aleppo, Hiba now boasts that Revolutionary Security is stronger than the United States' Central Intelligence Agency. His group has recruited, trained, and inserted spies into FSA units throughout the city to report on anyone who violates the law.