Photo: John McCain in Syria poses with the Director of the Syrian Emergency Task (foreground on the left) and Mohammad Nour (in the doorway with hand on his chest.

Republican Senator John McCain entered Syria illegally, on May 27 [1]. However, the photo that we published caused deep consternation in Lebanon, where Shiite families identified the person in the doorway as Mohammad Nour, spokesman for the Northern Storm Brigade.

As it happens, this brigade abducted 11 Lebanese Shiite pilgrims in Azaz, 9 of whom are still being held.

Contacted by The Daily Star (Beirut), the Senator’s office vows not to know Mohammad Nour, who supposedly "sneaked in" when the photograph was being snapped. John McCain refutes any allegation of collusion with the kidnappers.

Senator McCain went to Syria in an attempt to prove that weapons delivery to "moderate rebels" only could be easily controlled. His trip missed the mark.

[1] "McCain enters Syria illegally," Voltaire Network, 30 May 2013.