Posted by Joshua on Monday, February 5th, 2007
The CIA and Syrian intelligence are upping the ante in Lebanon. These two stories from the Daily Telegraph are revealing.
CIA gets the go-ahead to take on Hizbollah
By Toby Harnden, US Editor
Last Updated: 1:47am GMT 10/01/2007
Addendum: (Evening 10/05/2007) Here is a bit of helpful background that casts doubt on the sources used by Con Coughlin, the author of the following article. I thank Peter H. for bringing it to my attention in the comment section. "The Press Complaints Commission have launched their third investigation of Daily Telegraph political editor, Con Coughlin, in as many months, after a number of high level complaints about his latest ariticle on Iran. The investigation is looking at an article by Mr Coughlin on 24 January relying on an unnamed “European defence official” alleging that North Korea is helping Iran prepare a nuclear weapons test and follows the recent publication of a report detailing a catalogue of innaccurate and misleading stories about Iran by. The report, put together by Campaign Iran and published last month, revealed that Mr Coughlin, the man who ‘broke the story’ of Iraq’s 45 minute WMD capacity, is behind sixteen articles containing unsubstantiated allegations against Iran over the past twelve months. The PCC will examine whether the stories, all based on unnamed or untraceable sources, are in breach of Clause 1 of their Code of Practice, requiring accuracy." The rest can be read here.
Siniora government's battle for survival
By Con Coughlin, 10/01/2007
Here is an AP followup on the refugee visa situation in Syria: Iraqi refugees protest Syria's alleged visa restrictions
"The Iraqis in Syria are the victims of deportation," one banner read. Another said "Going back for one month means death." He will is refusing to go back to Iraq.
"My son was kidnapped and I paid US$20,000 in ransom to secure his release," Saeed said. "My brother-in-law was killed three months ago and my house was totally destroyed. I have nothing there. … I don't want to return."
Ali Ibrahim, another Iraqi refugee, urged the Syrian government to allow Iraqi refugees to stay in Syria until "calm returns to Iraq."
Syria is denying there has been a major visa change. It insists it continues to welcome Iraqis. The substantial demand is that in order to move from a temporary visa to a renewable residence permit, Iraqis must show proof of residency and an apartment contract.
This photo of the demonstration was kindly provided to SC by John Wreford, a professional photographer working in Damascus. He can be reached at Tel: 00963 94 361 947. His wonderful site, with many beautiful photos of Syria and other Middle East countries is www.johnwreford.com
Here is another photo of Sryian girls from his site:
Here is a bedouin girl
Also don't miss the new report from Conflicts Forum. "After Condoleezza Rice recently called Hamas a "resistance movement" (January 18), the reaction from reporters was… No reaction!"