The Hill 
April 14, 2013
A formal pact between al Qaeda’s Iraqi faction and Islamic militants in Syria could be the nail in the coffin for possible U.S. military intervention in the two-year Syrian civil war.
On Thursday, al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi announced the official merger of the Iraqi affiliate and the Syrian-based Jahbt al-Nusra (JAN) terror group into a single organization.
Formation of the so-called “Islamic State in Iraq and Levant” signaled the expanding influence of AQI in the region and the growing strength of JAN among the ranks of Syrian rebels battling to oust longtime President Bashar Assad.
The pact also likely extinguished any possibility for American military action or support for rebel forces in Syria, since the deal between AQI and al Nusra quells any doubt that al Qaeda has secured a foothold in the country.