The Syrian city of Aleppo, under constant bombardment by air and threatened by both Syrian regime forces and Islamic State militants on the ground, is now one of the most dangerous places in the world. In addition to fighting the enemies at the gates, Aleppo's rebels have to contend with adversaries within the city, including armed gangs of criminals and pro-Islamic State infiltrators.
While the US government is now ramping up military aid to the ostensibly secular Free Syrian Army, Aleppo's Islamic Front rebels are holding their ground with homemade munitions. Considered too Islamist for support from the West, and too moderate for jihadist fundraisers, the Islamic Front is preparing for the final battle. VICE News followed Islamic Front fighters defending the rebel-held half of the city against overwhelming odds from both the might of the Syrian regime and the resurgent Islamic State.
Check out more on the conflict in Aleppo: A City Left in Ruins: The Battle for Aleppo