I've read a few stories about individual Christians (like Brett Felton and Tim Locks), but here's the first report I've seen of an organized volunteer unit deploying to Syria.

This is a very small unit, but if it signals a trend then we are witnessing a significant challenge to the Westphalian nation-state system we've enjoyed since 1648. Up till now only Muslims have been organizing for violence outside the control of a recognized nation, but now Christians are getting into the game. We get so comfortable with the lines on the map that we're apt to forget that the lines are human constructs with no inherent meaning.

An eight-strong team of former British Army soldiers is preparing to leave Britain to join the fight against Islamic State in Syria, the Standard can reveal.

The team are training to fight as a single volunteer unit alongside the Kurdish militias on the front line in northern Syria.

Images on social media show members of the group posing in combat fatigues and clutching high powered assault rifles on a training exercise in Europe.

The caption to one image of a soldier with a machine gun reads: "Bad news delivery system, if you're ISIS!"

The former soldiers are believed to include a number who have Special Forces training.

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