EU Lays Off Syrians and Stops all Aid; Shell Pressured to Leave

The EU lays off hundreds of Syrians as it suspends all aid programs for Syria. In a sweeping decision to punish the government for its violent crackdown on the protest movement, the EU will cease all all aid and shut down energy programs and development. Royal Dutch Shell is being pressured to quite the country as well. The construction of a 724-mw combined cycle electric plant near Deir al-Zor will come to an end. Who will be hurt more: the regime or the people? Perhaps European politicians calculate that it doesn’t matter because in the end there will be plenty of pain to go around. The object seems to be to bring Syrian economy to a standstill in the hope of bringing down the government.

In the meantime, Tunisia and Egypt are being promised 40 billion dollars. G-8: Nations, Banks to Give $40B for Arab Spring. A clear carrot and stick is being established to encourage regime-change in Syria.

Time: Syria: If Protesters Don’t Get Assad, the Economy Will

As the crisis in Syria continues, many observers are beginning to say that if the protesters cannot overthrow the regime, the economy will. With political uncertainty at a suffocating level, the Syrian pound has fallen against the U.S. dollar. As a result, Syrians are feverishly hauling their money out of banks — about 8% of all banks deposits have been withdrawn — and shifting it into more stable foreign currencies. GDP was predicted to grow at a steady 6% this year. Now, predictions are closer to a negative 3% contraction. “I think the crackdown on protesters will succeed in the next two months,” a senior western diplomat in Syria says. “But in six months time, the economy will have taken such a battering that [President Bashar al-]Assad will have lost the support of the majority of Syrians.”

The economy had been key to Assad’s popular standing before the uprising. Portraying himself as a political and economic reformer, Syria’s President spent the last five years moving away from the socialist, centrally planned economy that has failed Syrians. With a team of economic liberalizers, Assad began to open up the economy to the private sector, encourage free trade and reduce subsidies. Tourism started to boom and foreign investment began flooding in. Suddenly, middle-class Syrians were able to afford new cars and houses. Consumerism developed as cheap foreign products, like Chinese TVs and heaters, entered the market. The espresso-drinking urban business class grew.

Now, however, the pillars of the new Syria are collapsing. Today, people are not buying cars. Actually, nobody is spending at all in Syria. People are working fewer hours and there are widespread layoffs — some companies have stopped paying salaries. In three months, Syria’s economy has gone from growth to slump even as the government is desperately trying to pay off its disobedient citizens with subsidies — money it does not have.

Tourism, which possibly accounted for up to 18% of the entire economy, was the first to go. A year ago, sandal-clad and camera-wielding hordes of European tourists would shuffle through the cobble-stoned souk of Old Damascus, who patronized the businesses of cocky young Syrians, many of whom speak five languages to cater to the flow of foreigners. Now the tourist touts sit on small plastic stools and drink sweet tea in their shops full of dusty carpets and silver trinkets. “The Old City is still safe, but it’s empty,” one shopkeeper said as he tried to sell a box of old coins from Syria’s eastern deserts, a once-popular souvenir here.

Most travel insurance companies have blacklisted the country; and Middle East tour groups are now avoiding Syria altogether, even choosing to fly from Turkey to Jordan, rather than busing through the country as they used to do. The shopkeepers of Damascus say many tourist companies have closed and the boutique hotels of the capital and Aleppo, the country’s largest city, are empty. “We will have to close soon,” one said.

The next economic support to go will be foreign investment. With dwindling oil reserves, the Syrian government has been betting on foreign investment to pay for more than half of all government spending over the coming years. Would-be investors are now waiting to see if the situation stabilizes or, increasingly, are simply taking their money elsewhere. A Qatar-based company recently scrapped plans for a $900 million project to build power plants here. “The prospects do not look good at all,” a leading Damascus economist said on condition of anonymity. “There is a deep sense that the crisis is ongoing and business is at a standstill.”

Worst of all, according to many in the Syrian business community, the government has backtracked on its liberalizing reforms in a last-ditch attempt to mollify the protesters, who complain of unemployment, corruption, low wages and high prices. On Tuesday, the Treasury announced it would further subsidize gas oil by 25%, the latest in a string of government measures, including generous salary increases for public-sector workers and reintroducing subsidies on food and fuel prices. “It is not feasible for the government to adopt a socialist economy again. They simply don’t have the money,” the Damascus economist said. “All economic moves have been short term emergency measures, there has been no strategy.”

Panicked by the protests, President Assad sacked his government in April in a move that one dissident in Damascus described as “a pretense to democracy.” The dismissals included Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs Abdullah al Dardari, the architect of the economic liberalization. Although Dardari’s longer-term policies were not always popular among the poor, the English-speaking minister opened the economy to foreign trade and private banks brought credit into the country.

A European business analyst working in Syria says that while the unrest has hurt the economy, the government backtracking on economic policy could cripple Syria. “There is now an uncertainty over future policy. People want to know if they invest now they can be sure for 20 years,” he says. Assad’s emergency measures mean oil prices and inflation rates are now unpredictable. “When investors don’t have certainty, because you just sacked all the economic reformers, they won’t invest,” he adds. The analyst says that it is possible there could be rolling blackouts in Syria as the government is unable to attract foreign investment for new electricity plants.

Unlike in Egypt, where the educated middle class used their knowledge of the Internet and the media to help oust President Hosni Mubarak, in Syria it is the poverty-stricken masses that have led the protests while the growing business classes have sat tight. Soon, however, many of Syria’s business class — who are generally undecided on the anti-Assad demonstrations — will start to feel the pinch when they can’t afford to send their kids to schools or pay for hospital bills. The Damascus economist says that would be the beginning of the end for Assad. He says: “The business community does business with [Assad] cronies in government. They are willing to take some losses, but at one point they will demand reforms.

Regulatory watch: Syria
Economist Intelligence Unit – Business Middle East
1 June 2011

EU suspends aid. The Council of the EU on May 23rd announced that it has decided to suspend aid programmes for Syria in light of the ongoing repression of peaceful protests. This could potentially inflict serious damage on Syria’s economic prospects, as the EU has been one of the most important sources of finance for development projects for a number of years, even though the two sides have yet to sign an Association Agreement, the standard framework for economic co-operation between the EU and Mediterranean Basin states. The EU stated that it had decided to suspend all preparations in relation to new co-operation programmes and to suspend ongoing programmes under the Euroepan Neighbourhood Initiative and Mésures d’Accompagnement (Meda) instruments. EU members states would be reviewing their own bilateral aid programmes, and the EU Council asked the European Investment Bank (EIB) “to not approve new EIB financing operations in Syria for the time being”.

The statement said that the EU will consider the suspension of further assistance to Syria “in light of developments”. It also stated that signing of the Association Agreement is now not on the agenda. The agreement had been initialled in 2004, but plans to sign it the following year were scrapped owing to a worsening in relations over Syrian actions in Lebanon. As relations improved from mid-2008, the EU sought to revive the Association Agreement, whose principal feature is the lifting of trade barriers. However, the Syrian government objected to the insertion of fresh clauses about human rights, and a plan to sign the agreement in late 2009 was cancelled. There has been little progress since.

The lack of an Association Agreement has not been a bar to EU development assistance. The EU has provided more than €1.1bn in finance to Syria, with most of this being disbursed over the past decade. Energy has been a major beneficiary, with €615m of loans provided by the EIB for the construction of power stations and transmission and distribution systems. It is not clear what impact the EU’s latest action will have on Syria’s largest new power station project, involving the construction of a 724-mw combined cycle plant near Deir al-Zor by a consortium of Italy’s Ansaldo Energia and Metka of Greece. A signing ceremony was held in early February for loans provided by the Saudi Fund for Development and the Kuwait-based Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development, which together are financing about one-third of the estimated US$950m costs. The EIB has also been listed by the government as a major source of finance for the project, but the proposed loan from the bank could come into question as a result of the EU Council’s decision.

The EU is an important trading partner of Syria and a significant source of economic aid. In 2009 the EU accounted for 30% of Syria’s exports (mainly oil bought by Germany, Italy and France) and 23.5% of Syria’s imports. However, Iraq has recently emerged as the largest buyer of Syrian goods, accounting for 26% of total exports in 2009, and Turkey’s share of the Syrian import market has grown rapidly on the back of a free-trade agreement, reaching 7.6% in 2009. There is a risk that the unrest will hamper trade with these two countries.

G-8: Nations, Banks to Give $40B for Arab Spring, 2011-05-27

DEAUVILLE, France (AP) — Rich countries and international lenders are aiming to provide $40 billion in funding for Arab nations trying to establish true democracies, officials said at a Group of Eight summit Friday.

Officials didn’t fully detail the sources of the money, or how it would be used, but the thrust was clearly to underpin democracy in Egypt and Tunisia — where huge public uprisings ousted autocratic regimes this year — and put pressure on repressive rulers in Syria and Libya.

The overall message from President Barack Obama and the other G-8 leaders meeting in this Normandy resort appeared to be warning autocratic regimes in the Arab world that they will be shut out of rich-country aid and investment, while new democracies are encouraged to open their economies….

Tunisia’s government said it was asking the G-8 for $25 billion over the next five years, and Egypt says it will need between $10 to $12 billion for the fiscal year that begins in July to cover its mounting expenses…..

WSJ [Reg]: Shell Faces NGO Pressure To Withdraw From Syria

LONDON (Dow Jones)–Royal Dutch Shell PLC (RDSB.LN) is coming under pressure in the Netherlands to withdraw from Syria because of the Syrian government’s violent reprisals against pro-democracy demonstrators. Dutch non-governmental organization IKV …

The EU lays off hundreds of Syrians

أنهى الاتحاد الأوربي عقود مئات العاملين معه في مشاريعه في سورية وذلك بعد قرار تعليق جميع برامج التعاون مع سورية على خلفية استمرار “عمليات القمع” على حد ادعاءاتهم “ضد السكان المدنيين”.متناسين أن من يقتل هم المخربين وحملة السلاح المتأمر

وشكل مجموعة من الذين أنهى الاتحاد عقودهم صفحة على الفيس بوك يطالبون فيها بتعويضاتهم المالية وحقوقهم المنصوص عليها في عقود التوظيف، وأكدوا استمرارهم في المطالبة حتى الحصول على حقوقهم.

وتشير إحدى الموظفات في إحدى برامج الاتحاد انه وبدون سابق إنذار اخبرنا مدير البرنامج وهو أوربي الجنسية ان نغادر المكاتب وننهي العمل في يوم الخميس 26/5/2011، وتقول ان المدير ذاته كان يرفض مغادرة سورية لكنه غير رايه بشكل مفاجئ

why-discuss said:

Murat said:” …better one is to bankrupt the country through on-going economic paralysis. This will hit the elite classes where they will feel it – their pocketbook. Once their financial security is threatened, they will quickly get rid of Bashar”

I disagree with that ’stategy’ and in general on the described dangers of bankruptcy of the Syrian government.

This is the assumption Israel has for Gaza: We squeeze then economically and they will turn against their leaders.

The same assumption they had in 2006 : We harass them until they turn against Hezbollah.

Unfortunately this may work in western democracies, but in the middle east it can be the exact opposite!

None of the Arab leaders who fell were under any sanctions. In the contrary they were pampered by the Western countries, not for their democratic achievements, but because they has submitted to Number One Rule of the western countries: DO NOT THREATEN ISRAEL.

In Syria, this rule has been rejected by the Assad and the country has been burdened by sanctions for decades.

My view is that if more economical hardship is felt in Syria because of new sanctions, the Syrians will spontaneously regroup around their president and put the blame on the opposition and on the western countries.

So in the long run, these sanctions will have the exact opposite effect.

In addition, it will allow countries like Russia, China and Iran to find a open ground for more economical influence and sustained presence.

So the bankruptcy and isolation of Syria may reinforce Bashar Al Assad control of the country.

He still have at least one strong ally: Russia that is now courted by the western countries to save them from the Libya quagmire.

Contrary to the US, Russia does not dump its long term allies when they are in trouble.

Comments (148)

Alex said:

40 billions for Egypt and Tunisia is much more reasonable than the 2 billions we heard about at President Obama’s speech on the Middle East.

Who will get the money? … the army? … what will be the cost? guarantee no one touches peace treaty with Israel? no cooperation with Syria and Iran?

May 28th, 2011, 1:54 am


Mr.President said:

Bashar Assad will turn this European and American economic pressure against Syria into a gain. First, Syria will be flooded with cash from its multimillion+ expat community. The expats will be responsible to help their extended families. The number of tourists will double if not triple next year. This is true because Syria got so much publicity. She used to be just a small country in the Middle East. It is now known to every person on the planet. I also think that current events will give Assad people’s mandate to wipe sectarianism once and for all. Time for him to establish laws punishing people who commit or advocate hate crimes, punishing sheikhs and individuals who preach racism, discrimination and sectarianism (Syrian civil rights).

May 28th, 2011, 4:07 am


Shami said:

MR PResident ,the most sectarian entity in Syria ,is asad inner circle.This exclusive sectarianism is the most hideous in the region,it’s a culture of hatred that they cultivated for centuries,they are scared from change because they consider the syrian people as a threat to them.They are a fifht column.
This extremist sectarianism ,fortunately is marginal ,our multi religious and cosmopolitan culture is centuries years old and so was the case of Syria prior to the Asad.

May 28th, 2011, 5:01 am


Revlon said:

What does it mean when the president of Russia admonishes Jr to walk the talk!
Here is how I read the statement, issued in the context of the G8 summit:

– Jr has been doing lots of talk about reforms, alas has delivered none!

– The statement expresses the exasperation of the Russians with the Jr intransigence!

– The statement amounts to an ultimatum: Walk the talk, or else, the security council will!

May 28th, 2011, 5:59 am


Revlon said:

“The EU lays off hundreds of Syrians”
Government jobs, with very few exceptions, go to the regime’s benefactors!
This layoff shall hurt the regime’s benefactors.
The suppressed and impoverished masses care less!

May 28th, 2011, 6:09 am


Revlon said:

45. Dear MNA, prior to the revolution the regime was in control of a complete blackout on state committed atrocities in the country.
No body would dare to report what happenned to those abducted by the security forces.

These days, tens of thousands of cell phones and their cameras make it very difficult for such atrocities to go unrecorded, and transmitted to facebook and Youtube.

The whereabouts of this kid was known and documented by the family and friends. The security forces were either aware of the family’s knowledge or made aware of it.

I hope that I understood and answered your question!

May 28th, 2011, 6:29 am


majedkhaldoon said:

Dr. Akram Sha33ar,who spoke on Dunia TV, is a liar,Changes after death does not explain cutting genital organ.
Also his name Sha33ar,is the same last name of interior minister,Sha33ar,they must be close relative, his credibiity is zero.

May 28th, 2011, 6:50 am


syau said:


That’s what you’re basing your conclusions on, a surname?

May 28th, 2011, 7:24 am


majedkhaldoon said:

is he his son, or his brother? can you hlp ,findout what relation between them,if he is his son you can see that he has vested interest in lying.

May 28th, 2011, 7:40 am


Revlon said:

Iran is reportedly aiding the regime in its crackdown on the revolution.
– Iran is dispatching increasing numbers of trainers and advisers
– Aid includes also weapons, riot gear, and sophisticated surveillance equipment that is helping Syrian authorities track down opponents through their Facebook and Twitter accounts
– The new assertions — provided by two U.S. officials and a diplomat from an allied nation, all of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe sensitive intelligence — are clearly aimed at suggesting deepening involvement of Iranian military personnel in Syria’s brutal crackdown against anti-Assad demonstrators.
– There was no response on Friday to requests for comment left with the Syrian Embassy and Iranian interests section in Washington

May 28th, 2011, 8:20 am


Revlon said:

Cheer up regime supporters; Syrian television reports demonstrations and crack down in Qatar!

I am not aware of any other media to have reported such events.
Does anyone know of another scource?

شاهد عيان من قطر يوضح ما جرى في جمعة العزة

May 28th, 2011, 8:37 am


Sophia said:

I think what is left for the regime for now is to resist outside pressure in order to survive and this pressure will be going up. But unlike other countries, and unlike Iraq or north Korea for example, Syria will never be in a state of prolonged autarchy. So it will be one of these three scenarios:
– A solution including the regime and the forces who want to oust the regime
– A civil war egulfing Syria, Lebanon, Iraq (which is already in a civil war), parts of Turkey, with the expected consequences in Jordan and among Palestinians who live in these countries and extended consequences in Gaza and the West Bank
– A change in the actual political alliances in the region around the Saudi-Iran axis and Turkey has a role to play here, not Egypt where things are still fragile and where they depend on US and EU money.

As the regime has shown that it is not willing to surrender, the Syrian revolution and its external backers have only a small time window in which to act solution 1 after which solutions 2 and 3 will play against them. In this battle there can be no decisive victory on either side. However, Israel can benefit from a civil war in Syria that can freeze any possible threat from hezbollah or a civil peaceful Palestinian resistance movement.

My advice to the Syrian opposition: don’t be naive and listen to Israel and the neocons.

May 28th, 2011, 8:56 am


Revlon said:

It aint over folks!
Tanks on the way to Al7rak, 7oran, to chase the vestiges of conspirators (Fulool Al mutamireen)

28 5 Herak Daraa
حوران الدبابات اثناء دخولها مدينة بصر الحرير متجهة الى مدينة الحراك لمحاصرتها صبيحة يوم السبت

May 28th, 2011, 9:07 am


why-discuss said:


We have seen lots of promises from the EU and US. They always come with strings attached.
For example countries like Iran and Syria regret to have signed the
NPT as it has allowed constant intrusion, interferences and threats from western countries used for political purposes. After having been harassed about the alleged nuclear site, Syria has become very suspicious of signing economical agreements that have conditions imposed on the country’s internal political and social life. They know it can be used in the future as a politically motivated pressure. This is why they have refused to sign the apparently advantageous EU Association Agreement.

The western countries have not given yet any timeline for these billions. They are probably waiting to see if the emerging democracy in Egypt and Tunisia will stick to the Western sacro-saint rules: No cozy relationship with Iran and No threats to their protege, Israel.

May 28th, 2011, 9:34 am


Revlon said:

7amza AlKhateeb clip
The regime is responsible, and regime supporters are ethically considered accomplices in the hyenous murder of this boy.

May 28th, 2011, 10:25 am


Norman said:

How many billions has Indonesia gotten from the West after the Tsunami , i doubt that they got much , i think that they were promised more than a hundred billion.

i think that the crises will help Syria know who are friends and who are not, with lack of foreign debt, Thanks to the prudent Baath party management, Syria has free political decision to support Hamas, Hezbollah and the rights of the Palestinians, They are dying for Syria to drown in debt so they can control it, Syria should reevaluate it’s need for foreign investment and stop foreign ownership of Syrian land and properties that is only inflating the prices of these properties out of reach for Syrians, if Syrians are not for themselves we should not expect others to be for them.

May 28th, 2011, 10:32 am


Syria no kandahar said:

Prof landis
Some suggestions to rename this site:
Revlon comments
MB comments
Syria destruction crew comments

May 28th, 2011, 10:33 am


Usama said:


Thank you for sharing that Arab Times article earlier that responds to Yaser Abu Hilala. Is this Yaser’s article that it was referring to ( ? Where in it does he admit to recruiting and training “eyewitnesses”?


May 28th, 2011, 11:17 am


aboali said:

According to a friend of mine who is a well known industrialist in Aleppo with 2 large factories, he has already started laying off workers and cutting shifts. He says that in a maximum of 3 months, if the situation continues every single factory in Aleppo will have shut down completely.

May 28th, 2011, 11:18 am


Observer said:

The last portion of my posted comment was from the NYT and I do not recall putting it there anyway it is worth mentioning to avoid plagiarism.

I have no inside information about what is actually happening.
Now let us count the friends of Syria at the present time:
Iran and HA and allies in Lebanon. I would also add Algeria and Libya’s Ghadafi faction although both have no ability to help the regime at this time.

Now let us count the neutral positive countries toward Syria: I would say Russia for a time and perhaps China. Maybe the UAE and some in Kuwait as well, not all. I would say that Jordan is in this camp and like Algeria above does not have much influence it can provide the regime. This latest group of countries can help the regime bypass some sanctions. Iraq is too weak to help at this time

Now let us count the neutral negative countries and these are : KSA, the March 14 group, some elements in the Iraqi groups so as to spite Iran, and I would say Turkey and Russia in the near future. Russia will use the Syria card to extract concessions from the EU and US. Once the price is paid they will abstain in the SC.

Those against the regime with flexibility towards it include most of the rest of the world and those against the regime without any flexibility include Israel and the very fanatics of whatever religious motivation.

So what options does Muallem have in dealing with the increased isolation: he talked about Arab brotherly relations and these have been deader than a dead horse since 1967. He cannot go to the Conference of Islamic countries and even so it is ineffectual. So there will be back room and under the table dealings with Iraq and Lebanon on the immediate near, banking and financial games with and through Dubai, and arms dealing and maybe even drug trafficking with the Belorussians and others to finance the system.

This will bring even further rotting of the system from within; and will not change the course of events. The world has closed the door on Syria for now and if the world recognizes a Palestinian state in September, even this will further diminish Syria’s influence. The late President had given Syria a role bigger than its actual size with cunning and forceful diplomacy, the cub is not the father and does not have what it takes to extricate the regime from its predicament.

Suggestions for the regime:
1. Isolate and put under house arrest the key figures of the regime responsible for the violence. Including the most inner members of the family’s circle.
2. 17 internal security services are clearly not able to function and coordinate their activities as there is clearly chaotic repression and not an orderly one,therefore merge them into three one for external and one for internal and a third for law and order.
3. Suspend the egregious chapters of the constitution immediately
4. Suspend the Baath party members and put under house arrest the major leaders of the party with known and clear corruption histories.
5. Establish an independent Supreme Court and National and Regional court systems totally separated from the other branches and with international and Arab and supervision if need be.
6. Declare that within six months there will be multiparty elections and allow for foreign journalists and outside observers to enter the country immediately
7. Ask the UN for help with internal and external migration of refugees and for the transition to happen smoothly.
8. Reduce the draft to a maximum of one year.
9. Use the armed forces engineering group to rebuild the countryside including water and irrigation and roads and schools.
10. Create a corps of people to revamp the infrastructure like the US CCC corps in the 1930’s and ask for the regime’s friends and the UN to help.

I am sure that these measures will go a long way to help the situation.

Finally allow demonstrations for and against the regime, for I am sure as the Christian businessman from Syria posted he and others are longing for stability. they should be allowed to voice their support.

Now the regime is offering only two things: us and chaos; not us or chaos. This is not a formula for success.

May 28th, 2011, 11:26 am


jad said:

Check out this news report from the Syrian TV about what happened on Friday, the interesting part is at frame 0:10 when couple big guys with beard and obvious 3r3our look attack a police young guy without any reason then walk away as if they did nothing very suspicious, I think the Syrian TV channels MUST put cameras allover the country to show what is happening.

May 28th, 2011, 11:39 am


why-discuss said:

President Chavez Expresses Solidarity with Syrian People “Facing Imperialist Attacks”
Published on May 22nd 2011 at 10.08pm

…Chávez was able to obtain first hand information about the reform process promoted by President Al Assad, formulated in order to respond to the legitimate requests and demands of those who have been demonstrating peacefully and who have nothing to do with extremist groups armed and financed from abroad.

In the telephone conversation the Syrian president made particular reference to the new social policies implemented by his government in order to protect the most vulnerable sectors of the population.

May 28th, 2011, 11:40 am


Sophia said:

# 21 Observer,

Some points in your proposal make sense, especially the draft and everything related to justice. Young Syrians are unhappy about the draft, and Syrians must feel protected by the judicial system. I think the issue of social justice is more important than the ballot box and it is a healthy prelude to real demcoracy. The ballot box without social justice is travesty of democracy.

As for the whole proposal you are laying, I think we have to be realistic. The revolutionaries meeting in Antalya as well as the US and EU will not react positively even if Assad implements reforms rapidly. The only impact reforms can have is on rallying neutral countries and rallying internal public opinion but even here I am still skeptical, the pressure is not about reforms, it is about the submission of the regime to the external countries putting the pressure, or the fall of the regime. If they really wanted reforms they could have helped instead of imposing sanctions. You don’t impose sanctions when you ask for reforms.

There is nothing here about democracy and reforms from external countries, it is pure neocolonialist foreign policy.

I am sure there will be a US veto to the UN recognition of a Palestinian state.

May 28th, 2011, 12:00 pm


abughassan said:

I am surprised that some Syrians believed the myth that the west is waiting for the regime to fall so it will start pouring billions of dollars in Syria’s economy. Some points to make:
1. The EU is busy saving the behinds of its own members.
2. no investment is likely if there is no security.
3. no third world country received free aid. there is always a
political price, and most loans carry a hefty interest rate.
A swift fall of the regime,as some people advocate,will be a total man-made disaster with horrible consequences. It is naive to assume that the heads of the army and security forces will suddenly change allegiance and throw flowers at the new “leadership”, Syria is not Egypt or Tunisia, it is not unlikely that any attempted coup or any serious division within the army,the new dream of people like Abdulhameed,will transform Syria into a war zone. This is not the time to play Nintendo with Syria’s future.
Europe and other “concerned” human rights defenders will not stop at punishing the regime,they have already taken measures that can only hurt average Syrians,and this is likely to continue. The only appropriate response to sanctions is to take care of the Syrian family and look for new “economic” friends. That requires winning the trust of Syrians which can not be achieved if massive arrests do not stop,political prisoners are not released,corruption is not attacked and meaningful reform is not enacted. Russia,not China,is the only reason why there is no UNSC resolution against the Syrian government yet,but Russia’s position will change if the behavior of the regime does not change.As for new economic friends,there are many,China,Brazil,Russia and India to name a few,in addition to existing ones like Turkey and potential Arab partners,and I am confident,as history is the proof,that the same countries that are racing to sanction Syria today will be the first ones to send envoys tomorrow if Syria,not just the regime, survives this crisis.

May 28th, 2011, 12:15 pm


Vedat The Turk said:

What Reforms?

When discussing the presidency of Bashar Assad, everyone should remember that from the first day he took office he talked of plans to initiate reforms. But after 10 years of promising reforms nothing materialize!

Indeed, instead of SYria joining the World Trade Organization or siging EU trading agreement, Syria instead further isolated itself by embracing Iranian hostilities towards its neighbors and the West.

Talk about squandered opportunities! Now the regime is paying the price for its lack of action. It has no credibility with its people and the international community. It’s days are numbered.

Au revoire Bashar!

May 28th, 2011, 12:20 pm


why-discuss said:

Islamic states upset with UN Syria draft by EU
By IBtimes Staff Reporter | May 28, 2011 3:43 AM EDT

The Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) has raised strong opposition to some parts of a European draft resolution to be placed before the UN Security Council condemning Syria and has demanded that some parts of it be deleted…..

May 28th, 2011, 12:21 pm


why-discuss said:

Vedat the turk

“Syria instead further isolated itself by embracing Iranian hostilities towards its neighbors and the West.”

Syria should be friend with the neighbor occupying its land?

May 28th, 2011, 12:26 pm


abughassan said:

Things all over Syria,especially in Homs, seem to be improving. Let us hope for more peaceful days. Another observation ,mostly from talking to friends in Syria and cross-matching reports, more Syrians are unwilling to demonstrate,and more demonstrators now are in the “thuggish” category, some attacked unarmed policemen and even allowed their kids to participate in demonstrations and watched boys throw rocks at cars and shops as if that was an act of manhood. The calls for demonstrations are,for the most part, falling on deaf ears when it comes to educated and employed Syrians. My biggest personal disappointment with Syria,my birth country and the place where I grew up as a child,was that it looks like I failed to believe that it is still a third world country with scores of uneducated and/or unemployed people who are easily manipulated into using violence and hatred to feel better about their miserable life.this unfortunate description is not limited to anti regime forces but it is also true for many pro regime people who are unable to see the evil in using violence and torture and were full participants in the culture of corruption that infected so many Syrians. Much of that misery is due to an oppressive and corrupt regime,but we are going nowhere if we do not admit the ills inside each one of us and start the change process at the individual level instead of throwing all of our grievances on the regime’s table,that is how countries move ahead,and that is why we can not change Syria overnight.

May 28th, 2011, 12:48 pm


jad said:


“However, the draft does not call for sanctions or military action against ‘Syria’ but it articulates that actions by the army may account to crimes against humanity.”

Goldstone report took a year of investigation, a year to be discussed with manipulation by Israel, US and the PA not to be approved and another year to ‘convince’ Goldstone himself to dismiss it and the same useless UN knew undoubtedly in less than 2 weeks looking at youtube clips that ‘Syria’ as a whole did crimes against humanity and the way they word it so lightly in there way to convince others is pathetic:
“In our report we are not going to kill you we just want to put the rope around your neck and give you a small push, do not worry!!!!”

May 28th, 2011, 12:54 pm


why-discuss said:


MOSCOW, May 28 (Xinhua) — Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Saturday reiterated Moscow’s opposition to discussing the Syria situation in the U.N. Security Council, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The message was conveyed in a phone conversation between Lavrov and his Syrian counterpart, Walid al-Moallem, according to the statement, which was posted on the ministry’s website.

Lavrov was quoted as telling al-Moallem that Moscow still holds its “principled position against raising the Syrian topic in the U.N. Security Council.”

Al-Moallem informed Lavrov about the pragmatic steps taken by the Syrian leadership to implement domestic political reforms and to restore civil harmony, the statement added.

On Tuesday, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad told Russian President Dmitry Medvedev over phone that he would do everything possible to ensure peace and boost reforms in his country.

Earlier this month, Medvedev said that Russia would not support a U.N. Security Council resolution on Syria if it were to be similar to the one on Libya. However, Medvedev did not say whether Russia would veto such a resolution should it be proposed.

May 28th, 2011, 1:01 pm


jad said:

I never trusted Russia, they always stab us in the exact last minuet so I’m not hoping for anything neither from them nor from Chian, there words are worthless.

May 28th, 2011, 1:04 pm


Sophia said:

This article may explain the harsh words Turkey had for the Syrian regime but these words hide a more nuanced reality:

May 28th, 2011, 1:11 pm


why-discuss said:


I agree with you, I was shocked that there was so much hidden violence and animosity on both sides. I thought this was only in Iraq and Lebanon.
A national reconciliation must be established at some point.

Bashar al Assad has to stand firm for a major overhaul of the system with a clear timeline as well as establishing ways to control the corruption. He has to be ruthless, not with the small fish, but with the big fish often related to his entourage who have not only polluted and abused the Baath ideology, but have created violent resentments in the empoverished population.
Daunting tasks, I hope he can…

May 28th, 2011, 1:15 pm


Usama said:


I believe Egypt and Tunisia both are members of WTO and have association agreements with the EU, and look what happened to them now. Squandered opportunities indeed!


I agree about not trusting Russia. They seem to be holding up for now but I don’t think they will stay like this if the saboteurs and terrorists keep this up for maybe another couple of months. At the same time, everyone should understand any military action against Syria will equate to a regional war and I have a lot of faith that Bashar has tactical options that we don’t know about.

Also, in case you missed my earlier comment (sorry if I’m harassing you), the Arab Times article you posted earlier was a response to Yaser Abu Hilala’s article. Do you know where I can find that Abu Hilala article? I think it’s this one but I don’t see any mention of training eyewitnesses in Syria, which the Arab Times article says Abu Hilala admits.

May 28th, 2011, 1:23 pm


supportsyriaagainstthugs said:

Friday, May 27, 2011, Obama Gives Himself the Power to Economically Assassinate Syrian Leaders

Eric Blair, Activist Post

In April of this year President Barack Obama, claiming powers vested in him during an “International Economic Emergency” and “National Emergency” signed Executive Order 13572; Blocking Property of Certain Persons With Respect to Human Rights Abuses in Syria. Essentially, it gives him the power to seize assets of Syrians suspected of being complicit in human rights abuses.

This incredibly vague standard gives the president the power to determine who ends up with the control of wealth in Syria. The EO describes the broad accusations that can be deemed sufficient enough by the State Department or Treasury Department to render asset seizures:
(i) to be responsible for or complicit in, or responsible for ordering, controlling, or otherwise directing, or to have participated in, the commission of human rights abuses in Syria, including those related to repression;
(ii) to be a senior official of an entity whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to this order;
(iii) to have materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services in support of, the activities described in subsection (b)(i) of this section or any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to Executive Order 13338, Executive Order 13460, or this order; or
(iv) to be owned or controlled by, or to have acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, any person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to Executive Order 13460 or this order.
If events leading up to Libya’s “liberation” are any indicator, this Executive Order is the first step in engaging in an interventionist “humanitarian war”. In February of this year Obama signed an eerily similar Executive Order 13566, Blocking Property and Prohibiting Certain Transactions Related to Libya. Again, Obama declared the situation in Libya a “national emergency” in order to obtain the power to economically assassinate Qadhafi and anyone loyal to him:
I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, find that Colonel Muammar Qadhafi, his government, and close associates have taken extreme measures against the people of Libya, including by using weapons of war, mercenaries, and wanton violence against unarmed civilians. I further find that there is a serious risk that Libyan state assets will be misappropriated by Qadhafi, members of his government, members of his family, or his close associates if those assets are not protected. The foregoing circumstances, the prolonged attacks, and the increased numbers of Libyans seeking refuge in other countries from the attacks, have caused a deterioration in the security of Libya and pose a serious risk to its stability, thereby constituting an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, and I hereby declare a national emergency to deal with that threat.
This Executive Order was executed less than a month before the U.N. Security Council resolution for the so-called “No-Fly Zone” that has now festered into nightly bombings of Libya’s capital city and the actual targeted assassination of their sovereign leader.

This appears to be the modern imperial playbook for starting preemptive humanitarian wars for the purpose of regime change. Step one; seize the assets of the group currently running a country to weaken them. Step two; build strategic popular support for humanitarian intervention. Step three; bomb the humanity back into the country and kill the rightful leader. Step four; install globalist puppets to control the flow of the country’s currency and assets. Step five; move on to the next “oppressive” regime, bypassing the mirror of conscience.

One thing is for certain, Syria is next on the globalist chopping block despite the West’s clear involvement in spearheading the opposition movement there. The U.S. president can now conveniently claim the powers of international economic emergency and national emergency to circumvent any checks and balances to justify nearly any act of imperial tyranny. And 2011 is shaping up to be a Blitzkrieg by Western powers to take out the remaining global chess pieces that oppose their domination

May 28th, 2011, 1:29 pm


Observer said:

Sophia is asking for realism; I would say that the reality of the life of people on the ground speaks volumes about the difficulties of every day life that the AVERAGE Syrian goes through. The middle class disappeared in most cities over the last 10 years. It was partly due to the economic liberalization with 100% corruption that allowed for a few to become super rich and scraps to be given to the business class to keep them happy.
The reality is that interested parties and groups and sects are now fearful of democracy in whatever messy form and many are supporting as I said before reform IN the regime rather than OF the regime. Well the horse has left the barn.
Promise of reforms means two outcomes real or fake reforms, real is the slow end of the regime, fake is more hardship for all and an explosion at a later date.
Repression means two outcomes, complete subjugation of the people and we are back to 1980 and its turbulent 10 years but now many more people will have scores to settle with the regime and therefore a low level civil war or an explosion later on, the other outcome is failure of repression and this means end of the regime either with a violent and very messy catharsis or by internal rotting of the system or both.

Now I would like for people to put aside their pink colored glasses and look the reality straight in the face. I would like to ask a question: if you are not part and parcel of the regime or directly benefiting from the corrupt inbreeding of interests, what prospects do you have for a decent future for you and your family in Syria.
Nothing works in this system: water loss of 47% in Damascus, drought without relief for the population in Deir Ezor, denial of citizenship to Kurds yet obligation to join the draft, roads that may be the end of your life with unmarked pot holes and road work, schools were you have to bribe your grades through, universities where membership to the party ensures success, and on and on and on.

If the story of the young child tortured by the regime is true then this is unbelievable brutality. The President said that he ordered the cessation of ill treatments, if he cannot control his forces he should resign at least in protest and if he is in control he should resign as he is ultimately responsible for the actions of his forces. These are the kind of dilemmas he faces and only by coming clean will he be able to do anything in this country.

May 28th, 2011, 1:30 pm


Observer said:

Here is some reality for those looking for it, although I do not always like what the WSJ prints and they are often very pro Zionist they tend to verify their sources well
It is about increasing torture and increasing lack of control

May 28th, 2011, 1:47 pm


jad said:

Dear Usama,
Sorry I missed your earlier comment, here you go Yaser’ original article:
أحمد المسالمة.. شاهدا على درعا الشهيدة

Arab times first article about him:
وتكليفه من قبل المحطة بالتسلل الى درعا عبر الحدود الاردنية لتجنيد شباب سوريين ليلعبوا دور … شاهد عيان

And the latest answers on his article you linked
المخبر القطري ياسر ابو هلالة سأل: عن اية سورية يدافعون …. ونحن نجيب

May 28th, 2011, 1:47 pm


Norman said:


I agree with you that The major problem Syria has is the reason that I left, I felt that I could not succeed without money or connections, that is what made the us attractive to I am equal to everybody and have the same opportunity that others have if I work hard,

On the other hand, syrians tend to blame every problem that they have on th government in Damascus , taking no initiatives on their own to improve their lives, the pot holes and the dirty streets and the local corruption in city hall is not the responsibility of the government in Damascus, it is their own responsibility in thier own cities, it their local government and local prosecutor
Decentralization is essential for better towns and counties.

May 28th, 2011, 1:49 pm


Syria no kandahar said:

I think if Assad quits Iran and hizballah he will be an American and Syrian hero,I don’t see why he should’t?nothing good comes out of Iran.All those western and us tears dropping and crying for syrians will stop immediately if he does that.why should arabs be friends with Persians ?they don’t like Arabs any way,they name the gulf -Persian-instead of Arabic,they prosecute Arabs in Ahwaz,and they were bying weapons from Israel during Iraq-Iran war.isn’t it more natural to ditch iran than to ditch Arabs ,if you have to make choice.I think if Hafez was alive now he would have steered the ship in a safer way,he sent Syrian troops to fight within the American troops when he had to,he knew how to be the surviver,Bashar is in time pressur,I think if he adopts the American constitution,and turns all Syrian jails into cafes,America will not release the robe from around his neck,if he dos’t ditch Iran,that is what BIBI wants.

May 28th, 2011, 1:54 pm


why-discuss said:

Syria no kandahar

A suggestion:

Syria can propose to the California State to rent it Syria’s prisons to host the criminals that are overloading the prisons of California.
That would allow the modernization of Syria’ prisons with up to date torturing equipment tested by US soldiers in Iraq.

May 28th, 2011, 2:05 pm


Sophia said:

# 37 Observer,

It is the economic liberalisation of Syria initiated by Bashar El Assad that provoked an economic gap between the well to do and the rest of the country. But economic liberalisation has produced huge unequalities in cenutries old democratic societies in the west. The US is a democracy with huge unequalities.

Economic liberalisation provokes also resentement from the have nots and it is because of this resentment that revolutions emerged recently in the Arab world. Some argue that economic liberalisation should be accomapnied by democratisation as to give the indivdual enough freedoms to build wealth. And promoting economic liberalisation in Arab countries was the Troy horse for personal freedoms aspirations leading to demands to overthrow non democratic regimes.

However, economic liberalisation produces profoundly unequal societies and only the existence of a low paid job sustaining economic activity and a welfare state can calm the resentment of the population, but it cannot heed off the profound economic unequalities brought by economic liberalisation.

Western economies have become more and more unequal societies, thanks to economic liberalisation.

I think the promotion of democracy and economic liberalisation by western countries in the middle east or in other countries where this tradition does ot exist has two negative implications:

1. A unique model cannot be applied uniformly anywhere, so each country has to be aware of this and has the responsibility of adapting the model to the needs of its own population and to its traditional resources;
2. Basically this model is more about promoting western econnomies already exhausted by nearly 30 years of economic liberalisation and more than two major market carshes, by opening new markets for them. It is not about promoting anything good for these traditional economies.

Syria has fallen in the trap in which many countries have fallen by initiating economic liberalisation without any prearranged social and political measures that alleviate the effects of this liberalisation.

As to the corrupt businessmen there are many of them in western economies. These economies are monopolised by few wgo have major taxe cuts, incentives, and the like for their governments while the rest of us work for ridiculous salaries, relatively higher taxes and rising costs for housing and daily goods.

As for the roads, I would invite you to drive right now in Canadian cities (where personal taxe rates are around 40% of income for the middle class) like Montreal and Ottawa where major potholes have even inspired artists:

From where Syrians are democratic perspectives seem rosy and I understand, personal freedom is an essential feature of the modern self. There are certainly many things we appreciate in our demcoracies but we pay heavily for them and our democracies are not void of huge unequalities. I think one experience to watch is the eastern europe perspective and the disillusions it brought to these europeans as well as the rise of the extremist ultraright in these countries on the bed of economic unequalities.

May 28th, 2011, 2:13 pm


ss said:

Comment 41;

Syrian No Kandahar

Just to clarify some points:

The gulf has been always in history the Persian Gulf. I encourage you to go and do the search. It is Arabs who changed it to Arabic Gulf. There is the Arabic sea but No Arabic gulf in history. There is a persian gulf

Bahrain used to be a Persian Land as well until the treaty where the Shah decided to give it up for exchange with the small UAE islands which became part of Iran

I believe Arabs hate Iran way more than the Iranian hate Arabs, perhaps due to their religion (Shia). I have many Iranian friends and I tell you, they do not have the sectarian personality we Arabs have. Many Iranians do not have the Sunni/Shia issue that we have. Moreover the Iranian people are rooted in the history with a rich civilization even before Islam came and their contribution to Islam is amazing. You have to separate Iranian people from the administration, and we must give them a credit because they are amazing people.

I think the Assad and his ship is not sinking because of this tight relation with Iran. Do you want your fate to be like Jordan, Egypt, and even Fateh from palastine. Assad has many, many cards in his hands and Iran is one of them.

May 28th, 2011, 2:14 pm


ss said:

For 41: Syrian No Kandahar

This is from Wikipedia just an FYI:

On almost all maps printed before 1960, and in most modern international treaties, documents and maps, this body of water is known by the name “Persian Gulf”. This reflects traditional usage since the Greek geographers Strabo and Ptolemy, and the geopolitical realities of the time with a powerful Persian Empire (Iran) comprising the whole northern coastline and a scattering of local emirates on the Arabian coast. It was referred to as the Persian gulf in the Arabic Christian writer Agapius, writing in the 10th century.[4]

Arab countries also used the term “Persian Gulf” until the 1960s,[5][6] but with the rise of Arab nationalism during that decade, some Arab countries, including the ones bordering the Persian Gulf, adopted widespread use of the term “الخليج العربي” (al-Ḫalīj al-ʻArabiyy; Arab Gulf or Arabian Gulf) to refer to this waterway. This coupled with the decreasing influence of Iran on the political and economic priorities of the English-speaking Western World led to increasing acceptance, in regional politics and the mostly petroleum-related business, of the new alternative naming convention “Arabian Gulf” in Arab countries.

May 28th, 2011, 2:22 pm


MNA said:


“Dear MNA, prior to the revolution the regime was in control of a complete blackout on state committed atrocities in the country.
No body would dare to report what happenned to those abducted by the security forces.

These days, tens of thousands of cell phones and their cameras make it very difficult for such atrocities to go unrecorded, and transmitted to facebook and Youtube.

The whereabouts of this kid was known and documented by the family and friends. The security forces were either aware of the family’s knowledge or made aware of it.”

Thank you Revlon for your answer. It did explain some, but not all. Why would the regime deliever the body of this poor kid mutalated and tortured knowing, as you put it, that there are tens of thousands of cell phones and their cameras recording the autrocities and transmitting it to facebeek and youtube.

May 28th, 2011, 2:22 pm


jad said:

From Observer’s prove of ‘reality’ according to the ‘sourced’ WSJ article; I’m not saying that we have no torture is Syria or that our security moukhabarat are not thugs but I’m just asking for people to respect that we have brains:

“The stories we hear now are unimaginable in their brutality,” said a Syrian who said he worked in military intelligence in the 1980s and witnessed torture then, and said he was now fed up. “It is not only to deter protesters. They enjoy hurting people for the sake of it.”
-This Moukhabarat guy worked in the 80s and we all know what 80s mean and now he is suddenly ‘human’!? Really!!!!!

“He said his own detention began after he left an antiregime protest in a Homs neighborhood on April 17. He, his brother and two cousins got into a taxi, he said. They identified the driver by his accent as an Alawite, a member of the same religious minority as Mr. Assad and the majority of top government and security-service officials.
The driver took them to what the man said was an Alawite gang, who he said beat them, stuffed a rifle butt in his mouth and fired shots close to him.”

-4 protester maybe angry men in a taxi with only ONE ‘Alawite’ (his accent) driver and they couldn’t resist him kidnaping them????

“The four were then taken to the Homs military hospital, he said, where they were held five or six days. They spent the first three or so days, he said, naked and blindfolded with what he believed was medical tape or plaster.
“There were around 15 of us in a room and three beds,” he said. They were given no food or water and denied access to a toilet. From a gap in his blindfold, the man said, he saw a bag of saline solution that he opened with his teeth and shared around.
Every 10 minutes, he said, people he believed were security agents, nurses or doctors came in and beat them. He said he passed out at times from pain. It was here, he said, that he was slit with a scalpel three times on his back and again on his leg.”

-Every 10min a nurse, a doctor and an agent will just come in the room with rage and beat them, A NURSE beating 15 men in one room!!!! is this a normal hospital or crazy one?

-as usual through a gap in his blindfold he saved the 15 men in his room for five to six days without using the washroom on one bag of saline solution (which is salty which means it make you thirsty) who he opened by teeth, how come the liquid didn’t spell on the floor since he by himself tear it open…

-the fiction/article continue to tell us about about a designated torture OR in hospitals and doctors torturing people on purpose…

Read your ‘Reality’ ‘Resourced’ articles before you link them, especially when you use them as a prove of ‘Reality’ we all need to check and believe you point.

May 28th, 2011, 2:34 pm


jad said:

I agree with you about the Iranians, I have many friends from Iran and they are amazing people, well educated, open minded and way way more advance than us Arabs and their women are more independent even under the shadour than most of our Arab women.

May 28th, 2011, 2:59 pm


jad said:

داوود أوغلو : لو أخذت سوريا الإصلاحات بعين الإعتبار لكانت دولة يحتذى بها

قال وزير الخارجية التركية أحمد داوود أوغلو ” لو أخذت سوريا الإصلاحات بعين الإعتبار في العام الماضي، لكانت سوريا دولة يحتذى بها. هذه الاصلاحات لا تشكل صعوبة على سوريا بأي حال من الأحوال”.

و أكد وزير الخارجية التركية أحمد داوودأغلو على الموقف التركي من الأزمة السورية في مقابلة تلفزيونية على احدى القنوات التركية المعروفة في خضم حديثه عن الأزمات التي تعيشها الدول العربية بشكل عام.

و أوضح داوود أوغلو بأن سوريا قادرة على تحقيق الاصلاحات السياسية والاقتصادية للشعب السوري مبينا أن الوضع في سوريا يختلف عن مصر وتونس حيث قال إن الشعب كان الى فترة قريبة يثق بالرئيس السوري بشار الأسد ويحبه بصورة مختلفة عما حدث في مصر وتونس، لكنه أفاد بأن الوقت الآن قد تغير وبات غير معروفا ما اذا كان الشعب ما يزال يثق بالنظام أم لا ، مؤكدا على أن المجال ما زال مفتوحا أمام النظام السوري ليتخذ خطوات عملية في عملية الاصلاح في سوريا.

وأوضح وزير الخارجية التركية أن على الرئيس بشار الأسد الشروع فوراً بالإصلاحات التي وعد تركيا القيام بها إذا ما أراد للعلاقات بين البلدين ان تستمر على على نحو من التطور.

و تأتي هذه التصريحات بعد المداولات والخطابات التي صرحت بها الحكومة التركية لبيان موقفها من الأزمة السياسية في سوريا في وقت سابق على لسان رئيس الوزراء التركي رجب طيب أردوغان في منابر سياسية مختلفة.

وانتقد داوود أوغلو في المقابلة التلفزيونية الرئيس أوباما في تصريحاته الأخيرة الى جانب تصريحات نتنياهو فيما يخص قضية الإعتراف بدولة فلسطين وانسحاب اسرائيل الى حدود أراضي 67 معتبراً أن هذه المواقف غير ايجابية في عملية السلام في الشرق الأوسط ووصف الأجواء التي صاحبت هذه التصريحات في الكونجرس الأمريكي بأنها ” أجواء مزعجة “.

و أظهر داوود أوغلو في الصورة العامة في حديثه للقناة التلفزيونية حرص تركيا الشديد على تحقيق السلام والحرية والديمقراطية في الشرق الاوسط وأن ذلك يعود بالخير على تركيا وعلى جميع دول الجوار.

عكس السير

May 28th, 2011, 3:15 pm


Syria no kandahar said:

The point i am trying to make is the Iranian card is the one which is going to burn Syria ,Assad should get rid of it.The days of keeping all the cards and selling them later are gone.US will not allow Iran to have influence over the middle east and it is willing to do all it can to trim iran’s nails,even if it means that will involve doing ugly surgical amputation in Syria.isreal,US and the west don’t like the Iranian nuclear gangrene .

May 28th, 2011, 3:30 pm


majedkhaldoon said:

The regime is continueing to use brutal oppression, as if its policy is to invite foreign intervention,It seems the regime gave up on dialogue.
The torture of this child, Hamza AlKhatib,will have world wide consequences..

May 28th, 2011, 4:00 pm


Norman said:

Syria no Kandahar,

If it were not for Iran Syria and it,s support for the
Pestinians would have collapsed in 2005 after the harrIri affair, Iran is supporting Syria, not the other way around, look at Syria,s Arab friends like Qatar. They leading the charge against Syria , they can be trusted, they are treaters to Arab nationalism, look at their labor, all from India,pakestan and other southeast Asia while the syrians,Egyptians an tunisians are left without jobs, they are to be counted on Iran is .

May 28th, 2011, 4:22 pm


why-discuss said:

Erdogan reiterate that Bashar Al Assad can lead the reforms. Anyway who else is there?

By PNA / Xinhua and U.S. News Agency / Asian

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Friday that Turkey wanted to see a reform process headed by President Bashar al-Assad in Syria.

In an interview with Turkey’s TVnet channel, Davutoglu said Turkey attached great importance to Syria’s stability, moreover, it displayed a moral stance regarding the situation in this country. The chief diplomat said Turkey would provide Syrian President al- Assad with all the support he needed for his country’s transformation.

“What we would like to see in Syria is a reform led by al-Assad, ” he said.

Davutoglu also said that the Syrian president had expressed his determination about reforms one more time during his telephone conversation with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday, adding the two leaders exchanged views about the recent developments in Syria.

Describing Syria as one of Turkey’s major foreign policy priorities, Davutoglu said any negative impact from Syria would certainly affect Turkey.

May 28th, 2011, 4:27 pm


Tara said:

Syria no kandahar,

Your # 17 comment and other comments are out of line!

How about renaming the site as “free speech vs Mukhabarat comment”?

I think it is a rather more descriptive name.

Your post is empty and hollow. You lose credibility and respect with this style. Most non-regime supporters are not MBs. They are average Syrian citizens..

May 28th, 2011, 5:17 pm


Louai said:


‘This is not the time to play Nintendo with Syria’s future.’ 🙂 I was looking for a way to describe what some Syrians are doing now days some of them in a very good intention .


i don’t know if you share with me that the regime did admitt its mistakes already and now is the opposition turn ,the blame game will not work and all of us know that if a rapid reform was to take place now where there is no security it will placed on the concession category not the reform category even releasing the political prisoners (who some of them were released already)

yes things are improving specially in Homs ,it hasn’t been reported any vandalism or violence this Friday ,the number of demonstrators in Bab elsbaa was much less comparing to last Friday and the slogans were a bit improved (apart of saluting al3ar3oor)

May 28th, 2011, 5:33 pm


Louai said:

41. Syria no Kandahar
I totally agree with you that if Mr president ditch the Iranians and Hezbollah and Hamas all the tears will transform to smiles from USA and Europe

To ditch Iran is not the only thing America and Israel want ,they want guarantied of the Israel security without any return , they want the Syrian government to surrender and be like Mubarak’s Egypt .

Also so far Iran is the only real friend to Syria in the ME.

May 28th, 2011, 5:36 pm


Sophia said:

# 41 Louai and # 55 Syria No Kandahar,

Ditching Iran and Hezbollah will only give Assad some respite vis-à-vis external pressure but at the first occasion they will be back putting pressure at him to please them more. I mean look to which lenght kaddafi went to please the US and it did him no good.
Besides, it is an unrealistic scenario. Why would Assad abandon his sure allies for something uncertain?

Iran and Hezbollah are only unsavoury in the eyes of USrael and the west but this is biased and arbitrary since some of their friends are much more unsavoury than Iran and Hezbollah.

May 28th, 2011, 5:52 pm


Sophia said:

UK trained Saudi forces used to crush revolution in Bahrain.

The West is hypocritical and arrogant and it has no lessons to give others in human rights and democracy. Are they going to impose sanctions on KSA? Are they going to impose sanctions on Bahrain? No.

When the concept of human rights and democracy becomes so enmeshed in special interests and applied only to political ennemies while friends can kill and stiffle freedoms as they wish, it falls into disrepute.

Let’s say Assad asks the UK to provide the same logistics, would they accept? And they dare speak of Iranian help provided to Assad to control the protests.

This kind of double standards makes me furious.

May 28th, 2011, 6:02 pm


Mohamed Kanj said:

“Syrian should ditch Iran & Hezbollah” ?

No chance of that happening. Just remember were Syria gets 80% of it’s gas and oil supplies, at far less than any other country will pay – Iran. Remember what happened to Gaddafi after he fell into america’s trap of giving up his surplus of weapons and support for palestinians – America betrayed him. If Syria turns it’s back on Hezbollah , 80% of syrians will Lose faith I’n the government. The resistance is embedded I’n 90% of the Syrian populations mind and culture. Iran was the only country to support Syria after the harriri murder – where were the gulf countries ? The gulf countries are puppets for the west and the syrians know that

May 28th, 2011, 6:33 pm


Sophia said:

“This is the shocking face of our democracy to many people in the world, as we prop up regimes of this sort,” Edwards said. “It is intensely hypocritical of our leadership in the UK – Labour or Conservative – to talk of supporting freedoms in the Middle East and elsewhere while at the same time training crack troops of dictatorships.”

So people here have to relax, the pressure on Assad is not about demcoracy but about changing a regime to a friendly one. And even if Assad implements democracy overnight, he won’t please these people. That doesn’t mean that Assad shouldn’t work for the public interest of the Syrian people. On the contrary. But he has to tell his people that all this democracy mayhem has nothing to do with putting Syrian interests first. It is the west’s (USrael) interests first.

May 28th, 2011, 6:37 pm


Sophia said:

“An MoD spokesman described the Gulf states, including Saudi Arabia, as “key partners” in the fight against terrorism. “By providing training for countries to the same high standards used by UK armed forces we help to save lives and raise awareness of human rights,” said the spokesman.”

What? Aren’t these the same people who are portrayed by US embassy cables as cash machine for Islamists terrorists?

May 28th, 2011, 6:43 pm


Sophia said:

Another gem of hypocritical justification from the Uk about training saudi troops in crowd control:

“Labour MP Mike Gapes, the former chairman of the Foreign Affairs Select Committee, said British military support for Saudi Arabia was about achieving a “difficult balance”.

“On the one hand Saudi Arabia faces the threat of al-Qaida but on the other its human rights record is dreadful. This is the constant dilemma you have when dealing with autocratic regimes: do you ignore them or try to improve them?”

May 28th, 2011, 6:49 pm


Louai said:

the only time in my life i saw 3 different groups of Arabs demonstrations united was last Tuesday in front of Buckingham palace, London when Obama was visiting ,
it was us (Syrians in support of Assad) Bahrainis and Libyans against NATO,we were all saying anti Obama and UK slogans all in the same time ,it was covered by many channels but i didn’t see any of them broadcasted yet .
My point is that the war is a media war now and the double measurements are applied in the name of democracy. Usrael(thanks Sophia) need the Arab opposition to legalise its interference no mater how small this opposition is no problem we give it more media cover to become more true .

May 28th, 2011, 7:05 pm


Sophia said:

# 62, Louai,

The problem is not only the media cover, it is the ostracization of an entire country, the sanctions, the turmoil, the bloodshed, the insecurity, the instability.

The people of the ME have to stop playing the game of neocolonial powers. They should look after themselves.

May 28th, 2011, 7:12 pm


jad said:

Norman, Usama, Abughassan, Syau, the always angry Tara and Mr. Revlon, and anybody else who asked about the poor kid 7amze pictures to be public, please download the file in this link to see those pictures and why it was late to give his body back to his parents, the Dr. said because nobody knew him and they were looking for his parents, the pictures shows that his body had three bullets but no torture or any of ugly signs used by the ‘revolutionist’ media, and to do that on purpose to the kid’s body after he was killed to use it for political gains is beyond belief.

May 28th, 2011, 7:30 pm


why-discuss said:

Erdoğan’s misguided approach to the Kurdish question

The Kurdish question continues to be Turkey’s number one problem. The much-touted Kurdish initiative begun by the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, administration has gone awry. Matters are coming to a dangerous head today more than at any time.

…. “Developments in Syria, however, have energized the Kurdish movement in that country and it is not clear how this situation will affect Turkey’s Kurdish problem.”….

May 28th, 2011, 7:50 pm


jad said:

Here you go the same report on Youtube:
التضليل الاعلامي ولقاء يوضح بالصور قصة حمزة الخطيب


In the ME we have lots of idiots, uneducated, radicals and plain liars, they are used to be used and they don’t know how to act differently.
When you see and read of a Syrian ‘wannabesomething’ on TV and in conferences asking for the occupation of Syria and for killing of Syrians out of hatred, fun and gambling needs and you see so many people actually listening to him, defend him, proud of him and promote him it must give you an idea how stupid, corrupted and criminals those people are, they are the ME worst enemies.

May 28th, 2011, 7:53 pm


Louai said:

Dear Sophia
I agree with you about taking responsibilities and not to blame every thing on the west and even on Israel, this syndrome is the main raison of most of our failures as individuals and maybe some of our failures as society
But talking specifically about what is happening on the ME now and the reaction of the neo-colonial powers and the ugly focuses or not focuses of media is my main point, NATO and the UN and many countries justified their decision of attacking Libya on media reports only!! Even all the Libyan diplomats who resigned from abroad did that only by watching TV!!! The sanctioned the Syrian government and the head of the state according to Media reports and crooks activists, they allowed KSA to enter Bahrain by not covering the demonstr5ations nor the invasion.
But again if we were to take responsibility of our own failure all this media harassment would be ineffective or little effective .
The story of this chilled who was killed and allegedly killed by Mukhabarat is one sad example of how low the opposition moral is and how lower the media coverage of it .

May 28th, 2011, 7:57 pm


democracynow said:


“when couple big guys with beard and obvious 3r3our”

Hmm. You mean a bearded guy like this one?

Was he toting a gun under his white salafi attire like this one?

How about black-clad with a beard? wouldn’t that be more intimidating?

May 28th, 2011, 8:06 pm


Vedat The Turk said:

@ Why Discuss
Yes, Syria should have had better relations with its neighbors – including Israel. If Bashar was serious about wanting to regain the Golan the best approach would have been to slowly implement confidence building measures between the two countries. This is how peace is typically achieved between warring nations.

Instead he pursued a short sighted policy of undermining Western peace initiatives and becoming an Iranian surrogate. His reasoning was that anti- Israeli / anti US policies made him a popular amongst the Syrian people. He stated as much in his interview with the Wall Street Journal in March 2011 when he proclaimed that an Egyptian style uprising was impossible in Syria because his regime had been staunchly against the West. According to Assad this was all that was needed to remain in power as an Arab leader. A few short weeks later he was proven horribly wrong in his assessment.

The important thing to note about this logic was that Israels continued occupation of the Golan was actually a net gain for the Assad family dynastic rule. Any kind of peace agreement with a Jewish state would have undermined its rule. Walid Jumblat put it best when he stated that Syria did not really care about the Golan and that the “Jews had done the Baathist a favor when they occupied the territory” (paraphrased)

May 28th, 2011, 8:30 pm


Tara said:


I saw the you-tube forensic interview you just posted. What the doctor said sounds plausible. There was no clear image of genital area to confirm that the penius was not cut-off. Nevertheless, I beleive he was not tortured. The pressing question here is: who killed the 13 years old child? The armed gangs killed him, and then gave his body to the security forces? That does not make sense. Does it?

The more pressing question is if atrocities are not being committed by the security forces, why is the regime still not allowing international press in?

May 28th, 2011, 8:35 pm


syau said:


Thankyou for the link. I knew the ‘peaceful revolutionists’ are the only ones capable of such acts of mutilation. They have done it before and it seems the have no problems in doing it to one of their own to further their cause.

I say one of their own because I count the childs parents as part of them. I dont care who they are or what incentives they would have been offered, for someone to allow their childs body to be degraded like that makes them just as criminal.

May 28th, 2011, 8:37 pm


democracynow said:


Also regarding your video, at 1:54 it says that in Hama only 300 people have gathered:

This video taken yesterday in Al Asi square certainly shows more than 300 guys…

May 28th, 2011, 8:38 pm


Tara said:


As you all know, I am new to Syria comments. Can someone tell me who is Alex?

May 28th, 2011, 8:54 pm


jad said:

I don’t know who killed the poor kid, if I’ll guess I’ll say probably the security when they were shooting at the protesters unfortunately for him he happened to be there and this is why he got three shots.
7amza case is a reflection of how much our society lost its humanity and reason:
– The presence of a 13yo innocent kid in a highly dangerous place show that people there don’t care about their kids they are willing to use them for any cause (I had many heated arguments and debates on SC about this specific issue of putting kids in the streets in these times, it’s a crime) So for me 7amza’s family is his first killer.
– The brutal and criminal action of the security by firing and shooting people in the street protesting and probably killing 7amza those are his physical killers and they must be brought to justice.
– The savage animals, I have no words to describe those who dared to mutilate and kill 7amza for the second time with cold blood just to use his body’s pictures for the cheapest political propaganda game I ever saw, for me who ever did this act is the moral killer and I tend to agree with SYAU that the mutilation was the signature of the radical militia gangs not the security.

May 28th, 2011, 9:11 pm


syau said:


I believe he could have been a victim of the violent elements inside the protests. Anyone could have handed him in the the hospital after they discovered his body. The doctors did not know who his family was. As for a clear image of the genital area, as you should know, that area will always be blurred in photographs that are made public.

As for you comments regarding “inferior intelligence”, I rest my case.

May 28th, 2011, 9:18 pm


democracynow said:

Oh yes. The beheading videos.

Al Qaeda must have infiltrated from Iraq, stolen Hamza’s body from the medical examiner Dr. Sha’ar, mutilated his body in ways they’re used it, and then handed it over to his family.

Or better yet, the parents colluded with Al Qaeda: once they received the decaying body of their son from Dr. Sha’ar without delay, they called Al Qaeda and got them to mutilate the body in exchange for a thousands S.P. (the standard mundass payment according to Dounia TV).

If somebody can think of a third scenario that leaves the security forces out of suspects’ pool, please do forward it to syria comment readers and dounia tv, along with pics from the qatari revolution and phone numbers for eye witnesses in Doha.

May 28th, 2011, 9:26 pm


daleandersen said:

Memo to Why Discuss:

Re: these sanctions will have the exact opposite effect … it will allow countries like Russia, China and Iran to find a open ground for more economical influence…”

Are you kidding, dude? Iran is already in Syria, calling the shots and basically telling Bashar when to stand up and sit down. As for China and Russia, why would they want to get involved with a train wreck like Syria? Your problem is, you think Syria has some kind of bargaining power with the big boys. It doesn’t. It’s a poor little dictatorship on a road to nowhere.

The plane is about to crash into the mountain. Everybody hunker down and hold on tight!

May 28th, 2011, 9:29 pm


why-discuss said:

Vlad The Turk

Your recommendations to all Arab countries: Make friend is Israel and the millions of Palestinians refugees will go back to their home, the Golan and the West bank will be returned, Bashar al Assad will be overthrown and everybody will be happy
Are you working for Walt Disney?

May 28th, 2011, 9:29 pm


why-discuss said:


“As for China and Russia, why would they want to get involved with a train wreck like Syria?”
Because they are stupid! and you know better.

May 28th, 2011, 9:31 pm


jad said:

Showing pictures of security force guys having ak47 is your way to defend 6r6our, the radicals and the act of attacking the police for nothing?
Is that the best you could come with instead of rejecting the provocation acts against another Syrian who happened to be doing his job in the street to make them a bit more bearable places for you and me to walk in.
Seriously guys have some rational to see beyond your hatred that this police guy is also another Syrian human being that he has no guilt being there and he didn’t do ANYTHING to be hit. Some balance wont hurt your political stand and believe me, the propaganda way of defending wrong acts doesn’t work.

Regarding ‘MY’ video about Hama, the report was about after prayer’s protests on Friday, even Aljazeera didn’t give high numbers for Hama on friday.
The video you show happened later in the day and Syria News reported it and thank god nobody get killed there and after some time everybody went home.
Now your turn, regarding ‘YOUR’ video, the title say more than 60,000, I can tell you for sure that this plaza is about 9000m2 so it’s capacity is 7200 people MAX and looking at the clip I say there are no more than 4000 not 300 and defiantly not 60,000.

In your #76 comment about 7amza, you make lost or sense, keep the good work.

May 28th, 2011, 9:41 pm


Sophia said:

# 67 Dear Louai,

You seem to be misquoting me here: “I agree with you about taking responsibilities and not to blame every thing on the west and even on Israel”

On the contrary I think we have everything to blame on Israel and the west but that shouldn’t stop us from taking our matters in our own hands and ignoring teh continual interference of israel and the West in our own affairs.

May 28th, 2011, 9:47 pm


abughassan said:

the unbelievable dose of lying in the media when it comes to Syria reflects the fact that Syria is a big prize politically to many countries. changing the regime in Syria, if it actually happens, will be a political earthquake in the Middle East.Hamza probably was not tortured but his pictures created a lot of angry responses and we still do not know who killed him and why.Two more policemen were buried yesterday after being killed in Al-Zabadani. I do not how anybody with an ounce of integrity in his soul can still claim that the regime is killing its own people. My grief and anger is divided because so many Syrians got killed, our own security officers fired on demonstrators,and our own citizens fired on the army and the police. Some suggested that we got what we only deserve,the regime,brutality,poverty,armed thugs,etc,but out of love to Syria and its people and out of hope for better days,I will say that I want to hold judgment until we see the light at the end of what I hope will be a short tunnel…

May 28th, 2011, 9:50 pm


jad said:

“It doesn’t. It’s a poor little dictatorship on a road to nowhere.”
If Syria is nothing, why you even bother come here and write, do something more important.
I like your consistency linking the same thing in every comment you leave, it makes you look smart.

WD “Because they are stupid! and you know better.” good one 🙂

May 28th, 2011, 9:51 pm


Nafdik said:

I am really puzzled by the hamza story.

Here is what we know:

– his family says he was arrested by sec forces
– his body was returned a few weeks later
– his family claims he was castrated
– the gov dr says he was not

Questions that are mysterious:

– if he was castrated why did sec forces return the body?
– why did the gov dr from damascus do the autopsy on a daraa victim?

Anybody has atheory that makes sense?

Jad thinks he was castrated with consent of parents to inflame revolution (please correct me jad if i misrepresent your point).

It is highly unlikely in my opinion, but i find it unlikely that the gov will return a castrated body as well.

May 28th, 2011, 10:17 pm


why-discuss said:


What happen is a war where the opponents are carried by an mindless violence and cruelty, unaware of what they are doing.
It has happened in Lebanon and lasted 15 years of killing and destruction. When they wake up and realizes what they did, they are stunned and wonder what took them to do such things.
Healing is a long process.

May 28th, 2011, 10:21 pm


jad said:

NO, I didn’t say that why his family do such horrible thing to their son!
My theory is that he was killed probably during the protests, my guess was bullets from the security, his body went to hospital where they have the death report since every death in Syrian hospitals must be reported to the police.
He apparently stayed for a week or so until his parents recognize him then he was delivered to someone on behalf of the family, here is the mystery, because at this moment the police has nothing to do with the body and usually an ambulance transfer the body, in the way between the hospital and his house something happened, I personally highly doubt the security will do such thing especially when any mistake will be exaggerated, so someone did this horrific act and during that time mid to end of April we saw lots of mutilation crimes done similar to this poor kid so it’s a possibility that group of people decided to do that before they deliver the body to his family and later use it as needed and now is the perfect time when things are not that bloody as before.
Similar to the mass grave story which I predict way before from the moment they said that the security forces did take the container full of bodies and return it empty that soon will hear about mass graves where they bury those bodies.
That is the only scenario I could come with and I might be wrong.

May 28th, 2011, 10:36 pm


N.Z. said:

Now what about this article, it is in Arabic. Seems that the bad old days are back. I can no longer differentiate, the duck from the ugly duckling. Same brutality, same mentality. We all deserve better.

To the apologists, I am speechless.

عمان ـ رويترز: القت قوات الأمن السورية القبض على مراسل رويترز سليمان الخالدي وهو أردني الجنسية حين كان يغطي أحداث الانتفاضة ضد الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد. في التقرير التالي يروي كيف عاملته أجهزة المخابرات السورية ومشاهد التعذيب التي رآها من حوله خلال احتجازه لأربعة أيام.
وكحال باقي المراسلين الأجانب طرد الخالدي من سورية في نهاية المطاف. وهو يواصل تغطية الاضطرابات المتواصلة من العاصمة الأردنية عمان.
كان الشاب معلقا من قدميه ومتدليا رأسا على عقب وتسيل رغاوي بيضاء من فمه وكان أنينه غير بشري.
هذا مشهد من مشاهد كثيرة للامتهان الانساني التي رأيتها خلال استضافتي بالإكراه في المخابرات السورية حين اعتقلت في دمشق بعد أن قمت بتغطية أنباء الاحتجاجات في مدينة درعا بجنوب سورية.
في غضون دقائق من اعتقالي وجدت نفسي داخل مبنى جهاز المخابرات. كنت في قلب دمشق لكن نقلت الى عالم مواز مروع من الظلام والضرب والترويع.
لمحت رجلا معلقا من قدميه اثناء مرافقة أحد السجانين لي الى غرفة التحقيق لاستجوابي، واضاف ‘انظر الى أسفل’ هكذا صاح في السجان حين رأيت ما رأيت.
داخل غرفة الاستجواب أجبروني على الركوع على ركبتي وقيدوا ساعدي.
يبدو أن تغطيتي للأحداث في درعا حيث اندلعت الاحتجاجات في آذار (مارس) ضد الرئيس بشار الأسد لم تعجب مضيفي الذين اتهموني بأنني جاسوس.
والسبب الرئيسي لاعتقالي الذي قدمته السلطات لرويترز هو أنني لا أحمل تراخيص العمل اللازمة.
لم يكن عملي كصحافي لحساب رويترز أؤدي عملي المهني حجة كافية لمن يكسبون قوتهم من امتهان كرامة الانسان.
وصاح محقق ‘اذن أنت عميل أمريكي حقير… جئت لتبث اخبارا عن الدمار والفوضى.. يا حيوان جئت لتهين سورية يا كلب’.
استطعت أن أسمع خارج الغرفة قعقعة السلاسل وصراخا هستيريا ما زال يدوي في رأسي حتى يومنا هذا. مارس المحققون عملهم باحتراف وبلا كلل ليضعوني في حالة من التوتر في كل خطوة من عملية الاستجواب على مدى عدة ايام.
وقال محقق آخر ظل يصرخ قائلا ‘اعترف يا كذاب… اخرس يا حقير … أنت واشكالك غربان بدكم تشوفوا سورية تتحول الى ليبيا’.
في 18 آذار (مارس) مع بداية الاحتجاجات في درعا كنت قد عبرت الحدود قادما من الأردن حيث عملت لحساب رويترز لنحو عقدين. قضيت معظم الأيام العشرة التالية وأنا أغطي الأخبار من المدينة. واستلهمت الاحتجاجات سقوط رئيسي مصر وتونس فتصاعدت بسرعة الى تحد هائل لحكم عائلة الأسد الممتد من 40 عاما.
اعتقلت في 29 آذار (مارس) في دمشق حين كنت ذاهبا لأقابل شخصا بالحي القديم بالعاصمة السورية. اقترب مني رجلا أمن في ملابس مدنية وطلبا مني الا أقاوم وأمسكا بي من ذراعي واصطحباني الى محل حلاق الى أن جاءت سيارة بيضاء اللون لتنقلني الى المخابرات.
أظهر المحققون اهتماما خاصا بأمرين في تغطيتي وهي أنني كتبت أنني شاهدت محتجين يحرقون صورا للرئيس الراحل حافظ الأسد والد الرئيس الحالي وسمعت هتافات تهاجم ماهر الأسد شقيق بشار وقائد الحرس الجمهوري.
وتنتشر تماثيل الأسد الاب وصور الرئيس الحالي في الطرقات والمكاتب بمباني جهاز أمن الدولة.
شعرت أن مضيفي يريدون أن يقدموا لي بصفتي صحافيا أجنبيا عرضا توضيحيا للأساليب التي يستخدمونها مع السوريين. وكي أعد نفسي لما قد يحدث تاليا وأنقذها من الانهيار التام حاولت تركيز ذهني على ذكريات الطفولة.
ساعدتني هذه الألعاب الذهنية على تجنب التفكير في طفلي التوأم الصغيرين وزوجتي في الديار بعمان والتي لم تكن لديها اي وسيلة لتعرف اين انا او حتى ما اذا كنت حيا ام ميتا.
استمر الاستجواب ثماني ساعات حتى منتصف الليل في اليوم الاول من اعتقالي. كنت معصوب العينين في معظم الأحيان لكن العصابة أزيلت لبضع دقائق.
وعلى الرغم من أوامر المحققين بأن أظل خافضا رأسي حتى لا أستطيع رؤيتهم تسنى لي أن أرى رجلا وقد وضعوا رأسه في كيس يصرخ من الألم امامي.
حين طلبوا منه أن ينزع سرواله رأيت أعضاءه التناسلية المتورمة مربوطة بسلك بلاستيكي.
وقال الرجل الذي قال إنه من محافظة ادلب بشمال غرب سورية ‘ليس لدي ما أقول لكنني لست خائنا ولا ناشطا. انا مجرد تاجر’.
وأصبت بالفزع حين انتزع رجل ملثم زوجا من الإسلاك من قابس كهربائي وصعقه في رأسه.
في لحظات أخرى كان المحققون معي رائعين لكنهم ينتقلون سريعا الى الأجواء التي لا تعرف الرحمة والتي بدت كمحاولة منظمة لإنهاكي.
وهددني أحدهم حين ضربت للمرة الثالثة على وجهي ‘حانخليك تنسى من انت’.
لم أستطع رؤية ما الذي ضربت به. بدت مثل قبضة يد. جلدت على كتفي مرتين خلال احتجازي مما خلف كدمات ظللت أحملها لأسبوع.
في بعض الفترات بالطرقة حين كنت أقف وظهري للحائط رافعا ذراعي الى أعلى كان يمر علي ما لا يقل عن 12 من رجال الأمن الذين كانوا يدفعونني ويهيلون علي الإهانات. لكن الانسانية كانت تظهر في أسوأ اللحظات.
في احدى المراحل كان المحقق يصرخ ويسبني قائلا ‘يا كلب’ وجاءه اتصال هاتفي على هاتفه الجوال. تحولت نبرته على الفور الى نبرة دافئة وعاطفية وقال ‘بالطبع يا حبيبي سأحضر لك ما تريد’ ليتحول من اختصاصي تعذيب محترف الى اب حنون.
تمددت لفترات طويلة على خشبة في زنزانة بلا نوافذ مضاءة ببعض الأنوار النيون مليئة بالصراصير التي تابعتها جيئة وذهابا.
تذكرني الصرخات التي أسمعها من وقت لآخر أين انا وما قد يحدث. وضعوني في الحبس الانفرادي وكان السجانون يعطونني قطعة من الخبز الجاف او حبة من البطاطا (البطاطس) وأخرى من البندورة (الطماطم) مرتين يوميا.
حين كنت أريد الذهاب الى المرحاض كنت أدق على باب زنزانتي. يظهر سجان حينذاك لكن الاستجابة لمطلبي قد تستغرق اكثر من ساعة. فكرت في آلاف المحبوسين في السجون السورية وكيف يتحملون الحبس الانفرادي والإهانة المستمرة وكثير منهم على هذا الحال منذ عقود. فكرت فيمن قرأت عنهم من الروس الذين يعيشون بالمنفى في سيبيريا وعن معنى الحرية بالنسبة للسوريين وغيرهم من العرب الذين يعيشون في ظل حكم استبدادي في شتى أنحاء المنطقة.
بالطبع لست أول النزلاء في هذه الزنزانة. أحد أسلافي غير المعروفين حفر عبارة على الحائط بأظافر يديه فيما يبدو تقول ‘ربنا على الظالم’.
استرجعت الأحداث في درعا وآلاف الشبان الذين كانوا يهتفون ‘حرية’ والتعبيرات التي كست وجوه النساء والأطفال والشيوخ الذين خرجوا للشوارع للمشاهدة في مزيج من الدهشة والسعادة وروح التحدي المثيرة.
رأيت عقودا من الخوف الذي زرع في قلوب وعقول الناس تتداعى حين تحدى مئات الشبان بصدورهم العارية الأعيرة النارية التي أطلقها رجال الأمن والقناصة من على أسطح المباني. لن أنسى ابدا جثث الرجال الذين قتلوا بالرصاص في الرأس او الصدر والذين كانوا يحملون في شوارع درعا الملطخة بالدماء وعشرات الأحذية المتناثرة في الشوارع لشبان يفرون من نيران الأسلحة.
في اليوم الرابع لاحتجازي جاء من يستضيفونني لنقلي فوضعوني في سيارة أخذتني الى ما تبين أنه مقر جهاز المخابرات على بعد بضع بنايات في دمشق.
كان مجمعا ضخما به المئات من رجال الأمن في ملابس مدنية بالفناء وهم جميعا متجهمون.
وقال رجل فيما جرني اثنان آخران نحو القبو ‘فتشوا حتى أظافره’.
قضيت ساعتين في زنزانة فكرت خلالهما كيف سأتعايش مع السجن في الأشهر القادمة.
ثم نقلت الى حجرة قريبة. اندهشت حين قال لي رجل يبدو أن له سلطة ‘سنعيدك الى الأردن’.
أدركت لاحقا عند مطالعة الصور في وسائل الإعلام أن هذا كان اللواء علي مملوك رئيس جهاز أمن الدولة السوري بنفسه وهو المسؤول الذي يحتجز رجاله آلاف السوريين في سجون مماثلة في أنحاء البلاد.
وقال إن تغطيتي للأحداث في درعا كانت غير دقيقة وأضرت بصورة سورية.
في غضون ساعات عبرت الحدود وعدت الى دياري حيث علمت أن الأسرة الحاكمة الأردنية بذلت جهودا لإطلاق سراحي وجنبتني مصيرا بائسا. كما طرد صحافيون آخرون من رويترز وبعضهم تم طرده ايضا بعد احتجازه والآن أصبحت سورية محظورة على معظم وسائل الإعلام الأجنبية.
وبعد شهرين تقريبا وبمرور الوقت استطعت أن استوعب أثر هذه الأيام الأربعة بدرجة تسمح لي أن أسجل تجربتي بالكتابة. لكنه مازال يلاحقني هذا الثمن الانساني للانتفاضات العربية التي قامت بها شعوب تطلب بعض الحريات التي يعتبرها آخرون في أجزاء أخرى من العالم أمرا مسلما به

May 28th, 2011, 10:45 pm


majedkhaldoon said:

Did you ask yourself if Xray was done?
The kid was picked up in a small town ,where everyone knows everyone else,yet they claim they did not know the identity of the kid,do you believe that?
Dr.Akram Sha33ar is a cousin of M Ibrahim Sha33ar,minster of interior, his exam is very superficial,no skull exam,no X ray, no openning the chest or abdomen, this is very incompetent exam.
I just do not believe him.
Aljazeerah showed a picture of 24 year old man (Hussein Zo3by) his skin was burned in his legs and his fingers,this obviously torture,Is it hard to believe that the security agent,which they are infact oppression and torture agents, hard to believe they tortured Hamza, these people are sadistic, they enjoy torture.

May 28th, 2011, 10:58 pm


why-discuss said:


He come with the strings…

…How much aid the Western powers would ultimately provide, and how effective any aid would be during volatile political transitions in the two countries, remained uncertain. The group’s official communiqué promised $20 billion, which would be a major infusion of funds.

President Nicolas Sarkozy of France, the meeting’s host, said the total could be double that. But he and other officials did not specify how much each country and international development agency would provide, and the Group of 8 countries have in the past made commitments that they did not ultimately fulfill.

…Officials cautioned that the projected $20 billion in aid from international financial institutions would come in phases and be contingent on democratic and economic reforms. The pledge, an aide to President Obama said, was “not a blank check” but “an envelope that could be achieved in the context of suitable reform efforts.”

There is a fear, shared by both the American administration and democracy activists, that plunking down large dollar pledges upfront would risk funneling money into the hands of institutions, including the Egyptian military, which could misuse or simply siphon it off. …

May 28th, 2011, 11:15 pm


Nafdik said:


Thank you for the clarification and i am sorry i misreprented your point of view as i know this is a very delicate subject.


We all know that the regime employs torture on a regular basis, the question is why would they return a body that has been so mutilated.

Possibilities include:

– Incompetence, they forgot to check the full body
– To frighten people and tell them we will do this to your children if you do not shut up
– They thought that his parents will not have the courage to share
– As jad suggested somebody else could have done it while he was in the hospital
– Could be some pervert who is taking advantage of events to fulfill his pervertion

The other questions are the shots that killed him, they look too precise to be just shooting into the crowd.

May 28th, 2011, 11:18 pm


Abughassan said:

We knew for years that Arab regimes,and many non Arab governments,tolerated torture,practiced torture and even tried to legislate torture. Horror stories from Stalin Russia,Nazi Germany,Israel,Iraq and other countries clearly indicate that humans are far worse than wild animals when it comes to treating what they see as their enemies. Torture in Syria is a reflection of the brutality of security forces
and Syria’s well-deserved status as a third world country. Legislation against torture must be written in capital letters in any future institution in Syria to make it a crime to torture or aid in torture. Exceptions to that have been suggested by western politicians if torture was done against proven criminals if critical
information that can save lives can not be obtained by other means. I tend to side with John McCain on this issue despite the fact that I did not vote for him and I never liked him,he is against torture,period. Trying to suggest that Syria is unique in torturing prisoners is triggered by opposition to the regime.criminal thugs in Syria DID torture and mutilate bodies and so did many “Islamic” terrorists despite the fact that Islam made it a sin. I ,however,believe that security forces in Syria went too far and must be controlled by new laws and new leadership. Sensualizing this issue for short-term gains is not helpful,and the focus should be a revamp of the whole political and security system. A country that does not treat its citizens humanely is unworthy of respect.

May 28th, 2011, 11:20 pm


Nafdik said:

A very important question, as important as the mutilation, is:

Was he arrested and then sent back dead to his parents?

If this was the case then there is no rock under which the regime can hide. Since their dr examined his body and there was no mention of how they obtained the body.

May 28th, 2011, 11:26 pm


jad said:

Again, NO, I didn’t suggest that someone did it while he was in the hospital.
I’m suggesting that the attack might took place somewhere on the way delivering the body in an ambulance/van between the hospital and his house.

May 28th, 2011, 11:26 pm


Nafdik said:


My apologies again. It will teach me not to paraphrase others.

May 28th, 2011, 11:34 pm


jad said:

No worries Nafdik!

May 28th, 2011, 11:36 pm


syau said:


Why would an x-ray be needed if the reason of death is evident?

How do you know that the doctor is a relative of the minister of interior? If he is related as you claim, you cannot label him a liar because of any relative. As the saying goes, not all your fingers are aligned.

No one knows for sure how or why this boy was killed or how he came to be in such a state when he was filmed, but I know for certain that it was not the work of the security forces, but has the same mark of those who met the same fate at the hands of the criminals of the revolution.

Just ask yourself why would the security services, with the current media war and attacks from outsiders agains the security and government jeopardise further repercussions by doing such an act. This is definately the work of elements in the revolution at yet another attempt to further blacken the name of the army/security forces.

I am not saying there was no shooting on behalf of the security, there was and nobody can deny that, but on the flip side, there was a massive amount of murders and violence, and, arms used inside the protests to provoke shooting by the security. Violence and destruction of infrastructure is still happening. The main difference now is at the request of the Syrian revolution (as Revlon pointed out) they are marsked so they cannot be identified.

May 28th, 2011, 11:36 pm


Jihad said:

Maybe Salman Khalidi, the Jordanian working for Reuters, can tell us a bit about what the US-Zionist collaborators in the Jordanian Moukhabarat do to innocent poeple asking for change in the shitty country called Jordan that was carved out of Syria, such as Lebanon, to be a buffer zone for the criminal Zionist state that was created over Occupied Palestine.

May 28th, 2011, 11:48 pm


Jihad said:

The Arab Times website contains sometimes some crude articles that need to be read:

May 27, 2011

عرب تايمز – خاص


بعد كشفنا للدور الذي يقوم به المخبر الاردني الذي يعمل في محطة الجزيرة القطرية ياسر ابو هلالة الذي اعترف خطيا انه يقوم بتجنيد شهود عيان عبر غرفة عمليات اقامتها له الجزيرة على الحدود السورية قرب الرمثا … كتب ياسر ابو هلالة مقالا في جريدة الغد الاردنية جعل له العنوان التالي ( عن اية سورية يدافعون ) … شكك فيه حتى برئيس رابطة الكتاب الاردنيين الذي رفض اصدار بيان تاييد للربيع السوري المشكوك بأمره … واتبعه – ياسر ابو هلالة – اليوم للاسف بمقال امتدح فيه رئيس المخابرات الاردنية السابق احمد عبيدات الذي خردق الحياة السياسية في الاردن وسجن الالاف يوم كان رئيسا للمخابرات ثم رئيسا للوزراء

اما ( عن اية سورية يدافعون ) فنقول

عن اية سوريا يدافعون …. عن سوريا التي انجبت الجيش السوري الباسل الذي اخترق الجبهة في حرب تشرين اكتوبر واحتل طبريا خلال ساعات في حين كان الملك تبعك ( يا ابو هلالة ) يزور غولدامائير سرا ليخبرها عن موعد الهجوم السوري … ان صرماية شهيد سوري واحد سقط خلال حرب اكتوبر تشرين هي اشرف من راس ( الملك تبعك ) الذي اعترف بخيانته ولا داعي لان نردك الى شريط الفديو فهو متوفر على يوتوب وسبق لمحطتك ان عرضته يوم كانت هناك خلافات بين رانيا … وموزة

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي كلما مات شعبك يا ابو هلالة من الجوع والعطش رغم المليارات التي يدفعها له الامريكيون وتذهب الى جيوب الملك يقوم الشعب السوري بارسال الاف الشاحنات الى الاردن المحملة باللحوم والرز وتناكر المياه العذبة التي تغنيكم عن شرب شخاخ المستعمرات الاسرائيلية في طبريا الذي يضخ الى شمال الاردن عملا باتفاقية وادي عربة مع الصهاينة

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي علمت ولا زالت تعلم في جامعاتها الاف الاردنيين ( ببلاش ) منهم رئيس مخابراتك احمد عبيدات الذي تخرج من جامعة دمشق ولم يدفع ليرة سورية واحدة .. علمتهم ببلاش وعلى نفقة الشعب السوري .. في حين تنهب الجامعات الاردنية من ابناء بلدك الاف الدنانير التي تذهب الى جيوب اصحاب هذه الجامعات الذين هم من حاشية الملك

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي زوجة رئيسها رغم انها انجليزية المولد والنشأة والتعليم والثقافة الا انها وضعت الثوب السوري بمجرد دخولها بيت زوجها ولم نسمع يوما انها طارت الى اوروبا او امريكا لتشترك في معارض للازياء والتعرصة كما تفعل زوجة ( الملك تبعك ) التي نهبت الاخضر واليابس مع اسرتها وتتصرمح بمعدل مرتين في الشهر على نفقة الشعب الاردني الفقير وتقيم في جنوب الاردن الفقير احتفالات اعياد ميلاد اسطورية تنفق خلالها الملايين على نفقة الشعب الاردني واصبح اسمها عالميا رديفا لاسم اية راقصة او عارضة ازياء

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي رغم الحصار الامريكي الاقتصادي عليها ورغم انها لم تقبض دولارا واحدا من امريكا خلافا لدولتك التي تشحد حتى اثمان كلاسين الملكة رانيا … سوريا يعيش شعبها مكتفيا بنفسه وتستقبل اسواقه الاف الاردنيين الذين يحجون الى اسواق دمشق لشراء السكر والشاي والملابس والادوية واللحوم والخضار التي تباع باقل من ربع سعرها في الاردن … سوريا التي تنتج مائة في المائة من الادوية التي تستخدمها وتحتكر سوق الدواء في 67 دولة .. بينما لم يصنع الملك تبعك .. ابرة بابور كاز

عن اية سوريا يدافعون .. عن سوريا التي وقفت مع المقاومة اللبنانية خلال عدوان الصهاينة في تموز ويوم كانت مخابرات ( الملك تبعك ) تمرر للاسرائيليين الاخبار اولا باول عن تحركات قوات المقاومة في لبنان وتنقل للاسرائيليين الاخبار عن اماكن وجود قادة المقاومة الفلسطينية في دمشق

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي وقف شعبها مع غزة خلال الحصار والعدوان الصهيوني يوم كان الملك تبعك ومعه حسني مبارك يزودان الجيش الاسرائيلي حتى بالمواد الغذائية ويوم كان اعلام الملك تبعك ومعه الاعلام السعودي يدافع عن الجيش الاسرائيلي اكثر من التلفزيون الاسرائيلي

عن اية سوريا يدافعون … عن سوريا التي اكثر من نصف المفكرين والكتاب والصحفيين والفنانيين العرب هم …. سوريون

عن اية سورية يدافعون … عن سوريا التي استضافت مليون عراقي وتقاسمت معهم لقمة العيش بعد ان غدر بهم ( الملك تبعك ) وباعهم اولا لمخابرات صدام ثم لمخابرات الاحتلال … في حين تاجر ( الملك تبعك ) بماساة الشعب العراقي وسرق اموال العراقيين في البنوك الاردنية وسمسر على الاسلحة التي كانت تذبح العراقيين وعلاقة الملك تبعك ببلاك ووتر لا تحتاج الى اضاءة … فمحطتك تناولتها سابقا بالتفصيل الممل

عن اية سورية يدافعون .. عن سوريا التي لم تسمح لاي جندي امريكي بعبور الحدود السورية من العراق لملاحقة اي مواطن عراقي استجار بالسوريين في وقت تقع فيه محطتك ( الجزيرة ) على مرمى ( فص ) من القاعدة الامريكية في الدوحة وعلى بعد ( فصين ) من قصر الشيخة موزة التي تقبض منها مرتبك وعلى مرمى ( ثلاث فصوص ) من قصر القرضاوي الذي يفصل الفتاوى لشيخ قطر .. وموزته

عن سوريا نزار قباني … وليس سوريا شعراء القصر الملكي الذين يبوسون طيز الملك تبعك … صباح مساء

عن اية سوريا تدافعون .. عن الشعب السوري المنتج الذي يأكل مما يزرع ويلبس مما يخيط وليس مثل شعبك الذي يعيش على الشحادة والعطايا والرشاوى وتأجير جيشه للعمل كمرتزقة في افغانستان والبوسنية والبحرين … وبلاد الماو ماو

عن اية سوريا يدافعون .. عن سوريا التي انجبت الزعيم الوطني الخالد ( خالد العظم) وبطل الثورة السورية يوسف العظمة وبطل الثورة الفلسطينية السوري الاصل ابن جبلة ( عز الدين القسام ) واسد سوريا ( سلطان باشا الاطرش ) الذي استجار بالاردنيين بعد ان دوخ الفرنسيين .. فباعوه بقرشين وسمسروا على حياته … والقصة معروفة … سوريا بلد جول جمال … هل تعرف من هو جول جمال يا حيوان

سوريا والشعب السوري اكبر من ان يدافع عنهم مخبر تافه مثلك يترك فضائح النظام الملكي في بلده ليتجسس على الشعب السوري ويدس العملاء ويعمل على بث الفتنة لتخريب سوريا واشعال حرب طائفية لن ينتفع منها الا الصهاينة و ( الملك تبعك ) الذي توارث الخيانة عن ابيه وجده وجد جده

للشعب السوري مطالبه وحقوقه اينعم وهو سينتزع هذه الحقوق بطريقته ولا يحتاج الى ارشادات ونصائح صبيان الشيخة موزة

وللعلم فقط … ليس بيننا اي سوري … واكثرنا يحمل – للاسف – الجنسية الاردنية … مثلك … ومثل الملك تبعك

اختك …. على اخت الملك تبعك

هل عرفت الان .. عن اية سوريا يدافعون

May 28th, 2011, 11:54 pm


Nafdik said:


I am very proud to be syrian, and very proud of many things mentioned in your article.

I am very ashamed however, that such an article is written in the name of syria. Syria does not need to be defended with such a language and both jordanians and syrians are proud, generous and courageous people who have a lot to be proud of and both are ruled by rotten dictators whose time has expired.

As for who is better rania or asma, i really do not give a shit.

May 29th, 2011, 12:21 am


majedkhaldoon said:

Xray is needed to determine the track of the bullet, and the cause of death, Xray is needed to diagnose fractures,neck fracture can be diagnosed by Xray.Dr Sha33ar exam was cursory exam.

You said you are certain it was not the work of security forces, what is your evidence?

May 29th, 2011, 12:26 am


N.Z. said:

Do you know why they are masked?

Because they are not as brave as others. Because the security of the Killing Apparatus will identify them, they will either torture them or kill them later.

These senseless killings must stop.

The protesters have every right to take to the streets and demand regime change, robbing Syrians from their dignity by humiliating, killing and harassing them and their loved ones is ruthless and akin to all Mafias.

Rather than asking Salman Khalidi, about Jordan, I will like to ask why are the guns pointed inward, towards my countrymen and not toward Israel, the occupier?

Demanding regime change is not a crime. Denying men and women of their basic rights is.

May 29th, 2011, 12:26 am


majedkhaldoon said:

(Hamza Khateeb)
If cutting the genital,was done after death,the vessles will contain clotted blood, if it was done while he was alive , the vessles will be empty of clotted blood.

May 29th, 2011, 12:48 am


Abughassan said:

I still like the article despite the strong language used. Most syrians are actually comfortable with syria’s foreign policy. Our problems are in other venues and I am still hopeful syrians in Syria will find a way out of this crisis. We have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to how we treated our Arab neighbors. Qatar and others are the ones who have a lot of explanations to do.

May 29th, 2011, 12:49 am


Louai said:

Dear Majedkhaldoon

2 Questions please, in your opinion did they torture him then shoot him in his arm, or they shoot him three bullets then decided to tutored him?
Another question if its not too much , if you discover one day some how that the poor kid was not tortured by the security forces but by some other group just to further the opposition cause what would you think about this opposition?
Thank you

May 29th, 2011, 1:26 am


daleandersen said:

Memo to Abughassan:

Re: “We have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to how we treated our neighbors.”

So you think it was okay for Syria to treat Lebanon like a colony? You feel comfortable being an imperialist?

So you think it’s okay for Syria to harbor terrorist organizations that plotted and carried out acts of violence against Turkey and Egypt?

May 29th, 2011, 1:34 am


Alex said:

Thanks WD (91).

So, indeed they will wait until there is a strong and compatible leader in Egypt or Tunisia to give it to (… through many phases)

What happens if the country experiences serious economic difficulties before that strong westernized leader is chosen?

May 29th, 2011, 1:39 am


jad said:

How cute of Alsharq Alawsat this article, and NO! the protesters are not sectarian at all and if you dare to say that you are pro-dictatorship. Wisal TV channel is the leader and engine of the ‘revolution’ and it’s very objective and pro democracy but anti-women, anti-freedom, anti-kuffar and anti-anybody and everything not salafi.
Very cute indeed and so hilarious what they are doing in Homs:

حماه رفعت شعار «جاي دورك نصر الله».. والشيخ العرعور تصدر هتافات السوريين

لم ينس المتظاهرون الهتاف لتركيا

دمشق – لندن: «الشرق الأوسط»
برز هذا الأسبوع اسم الشيخ عدنان العرعور، ابن مدينة حماه، كأحد أهم محركي الاحتجاجات في الشارع السوري، وكان لافتا يوم «جمعة حماة الديار»، وليلة الخميس السابقة له، تلبية دعوة الشيخ إلى التكبير على أسطح المنازل، مما يشير إلى حجم الدور الكبير الذي يلعبه العرعور في تحريك المظاهرات، من خلال قناة «الوصال» الدينية التي تتهمها السلطات السورية بممارسة التحريض ضد النظام.
ففي حمص ومن ثم في حماه، وحتى قرية الحراك في درعا، كان الهتاف: «يا لحراك كبري وثوري كله لعيون الشيخ العرعور.. لعيون سوريا الحرة». وفي حماه هتف المتظاهرون: «ثورتنا عال العال.. شكرا شكرا يا وصال». ولم ينس المتظاهرون الإشارة إلى الدور التركي في هتافاتهم، فرددوا: «بالعربي بالتركي.. بشار رايح يبكي».

كما أقيم ما قيل عنه إنه معرض للشعارات في حماه على جدار مبنى المحافظة وسط المدينة، في تحدٍّ كبير للسلطات؛ حيث كتبت أسماء ثلاثة مسؤولين بعثيين اتهموا بالتآمر على شباب حماه، كما كتبوا «يسقط الاحتلال الأسدي» و«ويبقى الشعب.. حماه لن تنسى 50 ألف شهيد 1982» و«الشعب يصنع ثورته.. كلنا نكره بشار وعائلته». ولعل الأبرز في تلك الشعارات حصة حزب الله من الاستياء السوري، وبالأخص بعد خطابه الأخير الذي أعلن فيه دعمه للنظام السوري، ومن ضمن ما كتب بالعربية والإنجليزية والفارسية: «جاي دورك يا نصر الله.. يسقط النظام الإيراني والنظام السوري».

يُشار إلى أن التجمع الكبير الذي شهدته ساحة العاصي، وسط حماه، ظهرت فيه سيدة تكبر عبر الميكروفون وجماهير الشباب ورجال حماه يرددون خلفها التكبير. وردد سكان حماه هتافات أيضا للتذكير بأحداث الثمانينات وبأن هناك نحو 12 ألف مفقود من تلك الفترة ما زال الأهالي يطالبون السلطة بالكشف عن مصيرهم.

ولا يختلف الأمر في مدينة حمص التي حصلت على الحصة الأكبر من بؤر الاحتجاج وأيضا على الحصة الأكبر من الضحايا بعد محافظة درعا، لكن في حمص للهتافات دائما نكهة طريفة لا تتمتع بها مناطق أخرى، ربما لشهرة هذه المدينة كعاصمة للنكتة. فالحماصنة، على الرغم من الدماء التي يدفعونها، لا يفوتون الفرصة لتأليف النكات، فقالوا إنهم «افتتحوا مغسلا دوليا للدبابات» وإن «الاستدلال على أي موقع في حمص يكون بحسب تمركز الدبابات، مثلا إذا سألت: أين يقع مقر البلدية؟ يكون الجواب: عند أول دبابة على اليمين». كما أعلنوا هروب أمير الجماعة السلفية بطائرة مروحية، وأخرجوا مقطع فيديو يظهر فيه دمى طائرة مروحية محاصرة من سيارتين، وصوت مذيع يروي تفاصيل عملية هروب الأمير السلفي. وقبل ذلك كله أكدوا أنهم سيخرجون «للتظاهر بعد صلاة الجمعة بالمايوهات لتأكيد عدم وجود سلفية في حمص». كما هتفوا يوم الجمعة للشيخ العرعور ورددوا «أبشر أبشر يا عرعور».

May 29th, 2011, 1:55 am


jad said:

6r6our again in the local newspaper:

(التكبير) أسلوب جديد للتحريض والاستفزاز …مجدداً.. الوعي ثم الوعي

“ليل الخميس، فجر الجمعة، دخل إلى سورية أسلوب جديد في التحريض على التظاهر والاحتجاج، مضمون في استفزاز الصدور والتحريض الطائفي، أطلقه من ظلام بعيد ما يسمى بـ«الشيخ العرعور» من وراء شاشات إحدى قنوات الفتنة التي للأسف تبث من إحدى الدول العربية، ولها نصيب في المشاهدة من قبل بعض السوريين، ممن انطلقوا في الساعة التي حددها داعية الظلام هذا إلى شوارع بعض من المحافظات، فخرجوا لـ«التكبير» في الشوارع ومن الشرفات والأسطح تنفيذاً لتعليماته، وقد تكرر الأمر ليل الجمعة وربما يستمر إذا ما استمر البعض في الاستماع ومشاهدة هذه النماذج من قنوات الفتنة ومشايخها الموتورين.”

“وفي الحديث عن «العقل» لا بد من التذكير بضرورة استخدام العقل ليس فقط في التعاطي مع الأحداث اليومية على الأرض بل أيضاً مع ما تبثه القنوات الإخبارية من صور وشهادات تعزف على لغة «الطائفية» دون أن تستخدمها مباشرة، ولعل القصة المحزنة للطفل «حمزة» التي خرجت للعلن يوم الجمعة الماضي واحدة من أكثر القصص طائفية في ما تحمله من معاني وخفايا واستخدام واستثمار.
السؤال الذي يطرح نفسه في مثل هذه الحالات: ماذا كان يفعل «الطفل» في ساعة متأخرة من الليل في ميدان معركة كانت تدور بين الجيش وعناصر مسلحة في محيط سكن الضباط في بلدة صيدا؟ حسب ما قالت مصادر الاعلام السوري أو ماذا كان يفعل بالشارع بشكل عام ونحن نريد جواباً على ذلك؟
ودون التفكير في الجواب انطلقت آلة التحريض الطائفي على «فيسبوك»، وفي قنوات التلفزة والمقاهي وبدأت الدعوات من هنا وهناك للتظاهر من جديد نصرة للطفل الشهيد في محاولة بشعة لاستثمار دمائه بتظاهرات لن تؤدي إلى أي مكان، وهدفها التحريض ثم التحريض والتحريض، خاصة حين نعلم أن هناك أطفالاً آخرين قتلوا ومثل بجثثهم لا بل قطعت أوصالهم ولم يتحدث عنهم أحد في تلك المنابر ولم يبك عليهم رواد «فيسبوك» المناصرون للحرية، كما لم يؤسس لهم أحد صفحات خاصة، ولم يدع أي مكون من مكونات الشعب السوري للتظاهر، والجميع اعتبر الأطفال شهداء الوحدة الوطنية وانتهت قصتهم المحزنة بالنسبة للعامة عند هذا الحد وبقي أهلهم مع مأساتهم وذكرياتهم وألمهم، مثلهم مثل أهل كل شهداء سورية من الطرفين.”

“لسنا بصدد الدفاع عن الدولة أو الأجهزة ونحن نضم صوتنا إلى صوت كل من طالب بقيام طبيب شرعي من خارج سورية (مع احترامنا للأطباء السوريين) لإجراء فحص للجثة واستخلاص النتائج لتكون الحقيقة جلية أمام الجميع، مع سؤالنا الوحيد: ماذا كان يفعل الطفل في هذا المكان وهذا الزمان؟ ونطلق نحن بدورنا السؤال: من القاتل الحقيقي لحمزة؟”

May 29th, 2011, 2:18 am


Usama said:

Thank you Jad for the Abu Hilala article, and for the 7amza video.

About the Arab Times article, I agree that the language used is uncharacteristic of an educated writer, but I still had fun reading it 🙂

May 29th, 2011, 2:27 am


Murat said:


Ref: why-discuss said: Murat said…

I don’t find your arguments persuasive. There is not enough room here to detail the differences between the Hamas / Hezbollah examples you provide and an engineered Syrian internal economic implosion but just one will suffice — both Hamas and Hezbollah are, fundamentally, religious ideological movements whereas an economic implosion will have no comparable religious roots since wealth is spread among both Alawites and Sunni mercantile elites. Ideological elites do rally around a threatened (spiritual) leader, mercantile/business elites just see the money and will abandon ship when the water rises too high.
Second, you use the notion of sanctions to make your case. I was not talking about sanctions, I was talking about internal collapse brought about by internally-generated economic deterioration/paralysis. This is entirely different. Certainly we already see outside sanctions being applied and I agree with you that these sanctions **alone** would not be sufficient. I talked instead about a “relentless, on-going economic paralysis” with a lot of blood spilled until success is achieved, precisely because the collapse will be carried on from within, not by outside powers.
Brief reply to your comments on the potential roles of Russia, China and the IRI. Russia will not take advantage of the situation but will stay on the sideline because it already knows Assad is damaged goods and it does not want to be on the wrong side of history. China is too prudent to enter such a mine field outside of Asia and the IRI is busy trying to sack its president and prepare the battlefield for its next elections…Yes, they are providing manpower and equipment to crush the opposition but they don’t have big enough pumps to keep the sinking Syrian ship afloat!
Finally, you forgot Turkey… When one sees Erdogan finally giving up on his dear friend Assad and hosting the opposition, you know Bashar’s end is near…

May 29th, 2011, 2:48 am


Revlon said:

47. Dear MNA, you said:
“Revlon: Why would the regime deliever the body of this poor kid mutalated and tortured knowing, as you put it, that there are tens of thousands of cell phones and their cameras recording the autrocities and transmitting it to facebeek and youtube.”

Please find the answer in this announcement on facebook, Youth for Freedom page:
يا أهل النخوة نريد دعاء لأهل الشهيد حمزة الخطيب ( ولدنا وأخونا ) لأن الحكومة تلاحقهم من يوم تسليم الصور والفيديو
فأدعو لهم بالكف عنهم وكسر أيادي من يقترب منهم
فتريد الحكومة محاسبتهم بعملهم وبتقديم الصور للنشر
صبرهم يا رب وأعمي عنهم أبصار أولاد الحرام السفاحين والشبيحة ومن يدفعهم إلى ذلك

As I said earlier, the torture system do not release a soul, alive or dead, unless their abduction was witnessed or recorded.
Unwitnessed abductions end up in mass graves, and probably food for fish in the mediterranian as of latest accounts.

7amza’s abduction was witnessed by his family.

The system had two options:
– to declare that he was detained, with or without being wounded.
– to declare that he was dead and deliver the body.

One of the major achievements of the revolution is that it has rendered the system accountable to human right organisations for breach of human rights! Not delivering the body or accounting for the well being of 7amza AlKhateeb would be another documented breach.

As in all cases of mutilated/tortured martyrs, the families had to sign a pledge not to uncover the coffin or take photos or speak to anyone about the victim. This has been the policy since Asad the father. I am personally aware of one such example.

Most families have complied, for fear of reprisals on the rest of their members.

Some could not bear to hide their anguish, and went public.
They are paying the price now. They are on the run, chased by the Jr’s thugs.

Thank you for asking.

May 29th, 2011, 3:12 am


syau said:

NZ #103,

I agree with you that protesters have every right to take to the streets and demand rights, but I would think it should be done legally and peacefully. Not in the way protests have been conducted over the past two months. There is no country in the world that will accept protests of this nature. No country would accept their citizens to be murdered and mutilated or beheaded.

There is no country in this world that would accept it’s government buildings being stormed and burned, security personnel shot at, cars destroyed and burned, private dwellings robbed and burned down, there is no country that would accept its citizens being too afraid to leave their homes because of the violence this revolution has brought with it, having to close down businesses or retrench staff because of the way this revolution has crippled small and large businesses and the tourism sectors.

Innocent people have been murdered and subjected to all kinds of horrific acts. Soldiers killed, some wounded. Weapons in the hands of trigger happy gangs with no morals, who stand for nothing and would believe anything they are told, even if they are advised it is halal to do something they know deep down is wrong.

They listen to the calls for jihad which is taken totally out of context by the ones declaring it and they listen to the calls to protest while masked. Peaceful protesters would not do that.

Legitimate organisers or activists of a revolution would not ask people to risk their lives for the cause while they are sitting in the safety of their homes watching the events unfold. They would not call for outside interference of their country knowing full well what that would mean. This is not a legitimate revolution.

Is that the rights you talk about? Take a look at these peaceful protests and listen to what the Syrian people think.

This revolution was about demands for reforms. Those demands were heard. It’s about time these violent demonstrations ceased and allow the reforms, which are in the stages of being implemented to be implemented positevely and swiftly.

May 29th, 2011, 3:41 am


Shai said:

Some possible interesting similarities I find here:

The Palestinians are about to prove the current Israeli government irrelevant in their pursuit of freedom, as they step up to the podium and get the entire world’s support for (eventual) statehood. Economic sanctions upon Israel are now just a question of time.

At the same time, Europe and the U.S. are about to prove the current Syrian government irrelevant in the Syrian peoples’ pursuit of freedom, as they prepare tougher and tougher response to the regime’s ruthlessness. Economic sanctions upon Syria are already in motion.

It seems in both cases, the future of Syria and of Israel will not be determined by its current leaders, but rather by its own citizens.

May 29th, 2011, 3:59 am


Revlon said:

Rastan and Talbeeseh (Homs governerate) are bearing the brunt of Jr’s Wa2dulfitnah now!
13 wounded in total reported thus far.
The Syrian Revolution 2011 الثورة السورية ضد بشار الاسد
سبعة جرحى لان في الرستن … وتلبيسه مداهمات واطلاق وتخويف للاهالي ..
هكذا بدأ اليوم هذا النظام الظالم .. ونحن نبدأ .. لا رجوع عن الحرية مهما كان الثمن.


13 minutes ago

May 29th, 2011, 4:58 am


Revlon said:

“How cute of Alsharq Alawsat this article, and NO! the protesters are not sectarian at all and if you dare to say that you are pro-dictatorshi”

Like it or not, the majority of Syrians are moderate, conservative Sunnis. They value Islam teachings and respect their Sheikhs.
Their means of activism have been peaceful; including marching, chanting national unity and freedom slogans, and burining and destroying symbols of tyranny.

You and other regime lovers can claim all you want that this regime is secular.
Facts speak louder than your words
Let me remind you once more who your camp are:

– Jr: 3alawi
– Brother: 3alawi
– Cousin: 3alawi,
– All of the Hundreds of Second and third tiers of security and army leadership: 3alawis
– They have been persuing operation Wa2dulfitnah, authorised by 3alawi Jr.
– They have mobilised 3alawi-commanded security forces, 3alawi commanded paramilitias, and 3alawi commanded army units
– They have employed all means of deadly weapons and tortutre claiming over a thousand fatality, thousands of wounded, thousands in detention and being tortured, and God only knows how many incommunicados!
– Now, we also now that, even their chief medical examiner, charged with providing professional cover up of atrocities, is also 3alawi!

Do you still find it difficult to see who is sectarian and who is practicing violence?

May 29th, 2011, 5:45 am


Sophia said:

# 116 Revlon,

Comments from people like you go directly to trash and spam on my blog.

You have to recognise how generous and open Alex is to let you fan sectarian flames comment after comment after comment.

I try to imagine the anonymous people on this blog and your image is of Satan pouring oil on the flames, and enjoying it.

I have already appointed you the correspondant of Al-Jazeera on this blog. I think you will get a better pay of you work for them.

May 29th, 2011, 6:16 am


syau said:

Revlon, #116,

The only ugly sectarianism is the seed that was planted by the revolutionists and the growing stem of sectarianism which are your comments. Count how many times you mentioned Alawi.

The government is the government. It should not matter what religion the president is, what should matter is he is the leader of the country. The ugly sectarian comments are the ones that refer to the president as the Alawi. Do not forget that many of the prominent ministers are Sunni and those of other sects.

The majority of the Syrian population is Sunni and are supportive of the president and against this violent revolution. The only ones who add their sectarian venom are the Islamists and their sheikhs declaring Jihad against the government and endorsing horrendous acts.

The group behind this revolution along with their co conspirators are the ones trying to divide Syria and the diversity the citizens know and have been living peacefully with until this revolution.

May 29th, 2011, 6:18 am


Abdo said:

American and European aid is just a “commitment” (verbal propaganda for jourlistic purposes). No country has ever received the commitment figure in human history! So there is no use to begin discussion from the commitment figure. The actual disbursement has always been much much smaller.

I don’t believe that the west is ready to provide more aid to Arabs than to Israelis. So aid programs from the OECD countries are not so attractive as one may think. US and EU are facing serious financial problems of their own. I don’t think that their aid policy is sustainable. China alone can offer more.

May 29th, 2011, 6:42 am


Nafdik said:


Revlon comment was not sectarian. He was explaining how the assad family has exploited sectarian feelings in syria to build its dictatorship.

If you disagree you can counter him with facts or arguments, countering with slogans shows that you agree with him but want to avoid the topic.

May 29th, 2011, 7:08 am


vlad-the-syrian said:


salut !

j’ai arrêté de participer aux commentaires ici pour diverses raisons, entre autres les positions sectaires anti-alawites

si je peux me permettre un conseil : va plutôt commenter sur les médias français (Libé, Lefigaro et surtout Le Monde) ce serait plus efficace.

Un exemple : Libération

Damas frappe au Liban pour dissuader l’UE

May 29th, 2011, 7:30 am


majedkhaldoon said:

#106 Louai
Do I believe the kid was tortured, absolutely.
If you remember, at the begining of this revolution,it started by the oppression and torture forces arrested kids,because they wrote we need to down the regime,they took them to jail tortured them pulled their nail,and told their families to go to their wives and have new kids,and forget about those kids, who they are in jail.
Torture is always done by these forces.
the second question , I say it is impossible,you have to prove it.

May 29th, 2011, 7:31 am


EX3LAWI said:

To #118 & #119: The Syrian regime is clearly a sectarian one – there is absolutely no point in arguing otherwise. Revlon’s comment is factual and the way you chose to counter him with a bunch of ad hominem attacks proves that you have no argument – how does mentioning “3lawi” make anyone sectarian? Do you realize how ridiculously oversensitive you’re being here?

May 29th, 2011, 7:52 am


Revlon said:

118. Sophia,
The self satisfaction that I get from speaking my mind, is priceless.
Neither Al Jazeera, nor any other media have the money to buy it out.

May 29th, 2011, 7:59 am


darryl said:

To Vedat The Turk (#71)

Bashar Al-assad, did not say what you write. You either do not understand english well. He was even more clear in arabic. Infact yoy are pushing the same statement that Netenyahu was claiming when he was corrected by Haaretz reporters in israel who corrected their prime minster.

May 29th, 2011, 8:03 am


Revlon said:

119. syau,
– You said: “Count how many times you mentioned Alawi”
I say: You did not refute any of my claims!

– You said: “The government is the government. It should not matter what religion the president is, what should matter is he is the leader of the country”

I say: The government (that include Sunnis and Christians) is harmless. Ministers, parilamentarians and Baath party members in this regime are as important as “empty bottles”. Their main function is to wait recycling.

The root of the problem is the ruling clan, and it is purely 3alawi
They are above the law and the constitution, that they wrote.
They can suspend, append or edit their constitution, in the name of progress, or national unity.
They can impose, lift, and re-name emergency laws, as they fit for their “national”sentiment.

– You said: “The majority of the Syrian population is Sunni and are supportive of the president and against this violent revolution”

I say: Aside from the 99% phony min7ibbak refeerendum, do you have any evidence to support such claim?

This revolution aims at regaining their God given freedom of choice. If you value such human right, then I invite you to join the revolution’s call for early Presidential national elections!

May 29th, 2011, 8:24 am


Norman said:

The Syrian army is surrounding Telbesi in Homs, Apparently from what my family told me in Homs, The demonstrators are coming from outside the city and asking for directions to land marks in the city, They also mentioned that many of the demonstrations are taking place after the Friday prayers as few people mingle with the praying people and shout to down the regime and Allah Akbar La elah Ella Allah WA shaheed habib AL Allah and embarrass others to join them, they even in some occasions join a funeral for a naturally deceased person and shouting the same slogans , many times the relatives of the deceased beat them up.Apparently people are being paid to start these confrontations,and with the poor conditions that the Syrian are in , I would not be surprised ,

May 29th, 2011, 8:38 am


syau said:


From what I have seen in this ‘revolution’ is that it does not matter how much reform is implemented or what is done to improve the lives of the Syrians, it is not enough for you and other ‘revolutionists’ and thats because you do not care for the welfare of the Syrians, only your end agenda.

I hold great value for the ‘God given freedom of choice’, that is why I am absolutely against this violent ridiculous farce of a revolution and all it, and it’s co conspirators stand for.

For anyone to call for violent demonstrations, endorse murder and mutilation, call for outside interference in their country and dare to use Gods name whilst condoning and executing such acts deserves nothing but disrespect.

For a group of people to attempt division amongst the Syrians in the most abhorrent way deserves nothing but disrespect.

What is phony here is the Syrian revolution. Do I need to remind you of the masses of phony videos you have linked?

You comments “the root of the problem is the ruling clan, and it is purely 3alawi” disgusts me. The vice president is not Alawi, neither are many of the prominent government figures. His wife is not Alawi, neither is the majority of the military. Why aren’t Alawi, most of the Sunni population,Christians Druz and Aethiests bothered by this, because they don’t have the black stream of sectarianism running through their veins.

The “empty bottles” you talk about have the welfare of Syria at heart and are working alongside the president with reforms.
You and your group of revolutionists on the other hand can only play the sectarian game and hope for division.
Syrians are smarter than that, and that is why the majority of the country is not uprising as you would have hoped.

This revolution was based on a lie. It continues with its failing fabrications and still endorses violence and murder. The Syrian people will not allow such evil to succeed in their country.

May 29th, 2011, 9:14 am


Norman said:

The good thing is that where ever the army interfere calm returns ,

The ramification of these demonstrations are more than reform they are intended on destroying the resistance camp and return Syria to the fifties when she was a banana republic under the thumb of Saudi Arabia and the US ,

Syria should move on reeform ,

May 29th, 2011, 9:31 am


Revlon said:

118. Sophia,
– You said: “Comments from people like you go directly to trash and spam on my blog”

I say: I respect both, your freedom of choice, and freedom of expression.

– You said: “You have to recognise how generous and open Alex is to let you fan sectarian flames comment after comment after comment”

I say:
First, I value how owners of this blog appreciate and respect freedom of expression.
My comments describe and highlight existing sectarian imbalances and contradictions in the regime structure as well as in the pro-regime comments on this blog.

Second, I do not see that as generosity!
I believe that my input, biased and imperfect as it may be, serves to enrich this blog with the true colors of human mind.

– You said: “I try to imagine the anonymous people on this blog and your image is of Satan pouring oil on the flames, and enjoying it”

I say: Does that include you?
If you are not Sophia Lauren, then you are anonymous too! To me!

May 29th, 2011, 9:33 am


syau said:


From what I have heard, the reform process has begun.

May 29th, 2011, 9:46 am


Observer said:

It is deplorable that personal attacks for expressing views (no matter how much disagreement there is) are taking us away from the real issues at hand.

May I pose the following questions:
1. Is there a strategy that one can discern regarding how the regime has planned to deal with this crisis? I see one theme: “foreign and local jihadi elements in collusion with Israel and the US would like to topple the regime or at least change its position regarding Israeli hegemony of the region”. However, I do not see any nuances and any flexibility and any adaptation to the local regional and international shifts that are happening. I hear the commentators of the regime and they have one script that they follow: the security elements are being massacred !!!
2. Is there an economic strategy to deal with the situation? 20 billion in reserves can be spent very fast indeed; money has left the country, investments have dried up; tourism is finished; local industry cannot compete with the Turks let alone the Chinese; travel out of the country will be blocked and visas restricted; so is the regime willing to stay in power over a garbage dump?
3. What room for wiggle diplomatically does the regime have? I see dwindling allies, distancing of major supporters, Russia puts up resistance only to be brushed aside or bribed again and again; China has no strategic interest in Syria and Iran’s influence is diminishing by the minute as the Arab Spring is reasserting the Arab identity again and Egypt is slowly ans surely regaining its rightful place.
4. What back room deals can the regime do in the face of a population that is clearly extremely frustrated and resentful of a (yes call a spade a spade) sectarian corrupt and brutal dictatorship.
5. Elements of the regime that are vitriolic about Aljazeera and other channels must be still watching these channels and therefore my question is there an information strategy on the part of the regime? Why if the regime is so sure about its narrative are outside journalists barred from the country? Isn’t allowing competing journalists access the best way to go forward?

Finally, in response to Sophia I would have two quotes for the ills of liberal democracy:
” Democracy is the worst form of rule except for all the others” meaning that it is never perfect but the ability to debate and argue and present differences is the means for progress and continued attempt to redress injustice. The liberalization of the Syrian economy was meant to enrich the few with the deck stacked against the rest from the outset.
” Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. If the regime can kill and torture children and then lie about it then there is no hope for this regime to ever conduct any true and meaningful reforms.

May 29th, 2011, 10:01 am


Tara said:

I googgled sectarianism and that is what I got:

“Sectarianism, according to one definition, is bigotry, discrimination or hatred arising from attaching importance to perceived differences between different denominations of a religion. The ideological underpinnings of attitudes and behaviors labeled as sectarian are extraordinarily varied. Member of a religious group may believe that their own salvation, or the success of their particular objectives… require their internal opponents must be purged.”

The regime is indeed secular. It does not try to enforce Alawite teaching on anybody. I do not believe it genuinely cares about the well-being of alawites in any shape or form. The regime only cares about its existence (case in example: Aref Dalila). It would be as brutal to alwites as to any other sect if they to dissent. The regime is however continuing to mobilize some Alawites (shabiha) into supporting it by using sectarianism to its advantage, brainwashing them that their survival hood requires the internal opponents be purged. This is what I meant when I said in earlier comment that the regime is trying to rob Alawithood from Alawites. I do not believe all Alawites condone the brutal killings of innocent people or the blatant abuse of human rights that is practiced in Syria every day. I do believe however that a lot of Alawites are concerned about repercussion on their wellbeing if the regime to fall.

I can not deny some sectarian tone I also see on the Syrian revolution face book readers’ comments. To some non-Alawites Syrian citizen, watching the brutal crackdown of the plain clothed shabihas and others in uniform ordered by the regime (that is mostly compromised of hardliners Alawites) fuel anti-alawite sentiment as the killing render them unable to seeing the big picture as it is: The regime only cares about its survival! It is using sectarianism as a tool to keep its existence.

Some of you accused me of being jihadist (Tara= terror according to one) and others of being Zionist. I stated before I am neither. I do not support the regime. I do not support a MB rule in Syria. I do not want to wear a hijab. I do not want to attend a college or a gathering segregated by gender. I do not want Shariaa law. I do not want someone to impose Islamic rules on me. My relationship to god is a personal one. I support a secular government that is built on institutions and strong infra-structure. I am all for free judicial system, free election, term limit, dissolution of all 17 security forces, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, dissolution of Rami Makhlouf empire, free media coverage etc etc. and I would not care a bit if this all to be lead by a brave Alawites. This might be the only peaceful solution of the crisis in Syria. Bashar should resign or be toppled by an honest charismatic Alawite who should lead a true transition in Syria. This would relieve Alawites concern about any possible repercussion from the Al-Assad family fall, prevent any foreign intervention, and achieve a true reform not a pseudo declaration of such. His term should end with free election of the next leader.

Bashar can not simply do this. He has blood on his hands and he reached a point of no return.

May 29th, 2011, 10:18 am


Sophia said:

# 120 Nafdik,

I don’t carry slogans in my comments. My comment to Revlon is called moral judgement.

Revlon commenting with facts and arguments? If you consider the propaganda he is spreading as facts, it is up to you. As for arguments, the only one he has is the sectarian argument.

The ugly truth is sectarianism is resurfacing in Syria and all seem to be involved, not the least those who are attacking the regime for being sectarian and their propagandists. Sectarianism is a beast that eats at everything, including facts and arguments.

May 29th, 2011, 10:57 am


Sophia said:

# 129 Revlon,

“My comments describe and highlight existing sectarian imbalances”.

It is highly sectarian to write in these terms. Because if you recognise that there is sectarian imbalance than you are sectarian yourself and your thinking is sectarian.

But I must admit, people like you who did not have to get near the beast, think that sectarianim is something that can serve as a political argument. But as you don’t have to get near it because you must live in a theocratic demcoracy (which is an oxymoron), you can throw it on Syrians and let them deal with it with their blood, their security, and their well being. This is why I still think that for your comments to be tolerated on this blog is quite an achievement. It means that real Syrians like Alex are not sectarian or they don’t know what sectarianism is, not yet…

Sectarianism is like racism you must experience it in order to really know it.

May 29th, 2011, 11:06 am


Sophia said:

# 121 Vlad,

Je ne veux pas commenter sur les sites des media français. Ils sont très obtus et ils sont totalement dépassés. Leur rôle au moyen orient est insignifiant même si Sarko s’agite pour donner l’impression contraire que la France joue encore dans la cour des grands.

Cela fait longtemps que la France n’est plus une puissance mondiale et que le débat en France est plus étroit que n’importe où ailleurs sur les affaires du monde. Il y a cependant un blog français que je lis sur le moyen orient, c’est celui de Alain Gresh mais je ne commente pas là-bas car je suis souvent d’accord avec lui et que les commentateurs sont vraiment bons, ils n’ont pas besoin de moi.

May 29th, 2011, 11:12 am


why-discuss said:


“So you think it’s okay for Syria to harbor terrorist organizations that plotted and carried out acts of violence against Turkey and Egypt? ”

Turkey and Egypt? please explain.

Syria harbors the resistance to a terrorist state, yours.

May 29th, 2011, 11:23 am


why-discuss said:

Vald the turk

# 121

Je pense que les francais aiment les theories de complot.
Le prochain tsunami sera attribue a Damas pour prouver combien la France sait mieux que les autres.

May 29th, 2011, 11:32 am


Sophia said:

Washington will let Ankara handle the Syrian crisis.
This means that the neocons (including Feltman) are out, for the time being. It means also that Obama is trying to make his voice heard against necon voices in the region.

And it means also that my comment yesterday on a reconfiguration of alliances in the middle east was on spot. If the process is allowed to go a long way this reconfiguration will happen.

But let’s not be too optimistic.

For now things are moving well in Assad’s direction, no regional player, except Israel, has interest in plunging Syria and the region in cascading civil wars.

May 29th, 2011, 11:58 am


ss said:

“The regime is however continuing to mobilize some Alawites (shabiha) into supporting it by using sectarianism to its advantage, brainwashing them that their survival hood requires the internal opponents be purged”

Yesterday a lot of angry Alawite were going to attack Sunni areas where the thugs are declaring their Jihad. The army was extremely harsh on them and prevented them from reaching there target. The goverment will gain nothing by mutillating kids. The goverment will gain nothing by allowing sectarian war to happen. The giverment will gain nothing by inflamming the already angry people. The Syrian goverment does not want to escalate, rather, it really wants to calm things down. Security, peace,, and order is the goal of this goverment

On the other hand, the opposition, well sorry to mention this word because the majority of the opposition is legit, but a minority of the opposition is not real, they are armed, they want chaos, they want to do all they can to creat a an enviroment of killing and destruction to give a pass for forien countries to intervene. Unfortunatley with there acts many civilians, kids, and innocent people are being killed, by arms from both sides. They are simply caught in this nasty conflict.

May 29th, 2011, 1:51 pm


jad said:

You are as sectarian as 6r6our, even more, like it or like it,you couldn’t last more than 2 rational comments before you get back to your nature. I have no clue why people even defend you unless they are 6r6our/sarsour’s views supporters.
Sophia, Syau you both are right, when someone defend 6r6our/sarsour is a prove of his 6r6ourian thinking.

May 29th, 2011, 2:19 pm


jad said:

From Arab Times mail:

هام جدا لمن يريد الحقيقة

الى اسرة عرب تايمز

من حرقة قلبي أكتب لكم وأقسم بالله بأني لست بعثية ولم يكن لي في يوم من الأيام أي اتجاهات سياسية وأكره السياسة كراهية كبيرة ولكن الأحداث التي تجري والتي تعصر قلوبنا جعلتني أتابع مايجري في بلدي الحبيب وبالصدفة وصلت إلى موقعكم الذي أثلج قلبي أن هناك أحدا في الخارج يعرف ولو القليل عما يجري في الداخل
اليوم رأيت جثة الطفل اللذي قالوا أنه عذب من قبل الأمن واعتصر قلبي الألم الشديد ولكني كنت على يقين أن الأمن بريء مما نسب إليه هل تعلمون لماذا
سأقص عليكم هذه القصة ومنها نستنتج ما يجري (عذرا فأنا مبرمجة ولهذا أسلوب البرمجة يتغلب على نقاشي)أنا من حلب والكل يعلم المواقف التي اتخذها من يسمون أنفسهم بالمتظاهرين من أهالي حلب
أحد معارفي وهو مسافر مع زوجته وأطفاله على طريق حلب دمشق أوقفته مجموعة مسلحة وأنزلتهم من السيارة وبدأت بشتمهم وسبهم ونعتهم بالجبن لأن أهالي حلب لايخرجون بالمظاهرات ومن ثم سألوه ببرود أي أولادك أحب إليك؟ومن ثم اختاروا أحد أطفاله وأطلقوا عليه الرصاص بدم بارد مام أعينهم وجعلوهم يركبوا السيارة ويعودوا إلى مدينتهم
أين هي الحرية في هذا العمل؟ هل الحرية في الخروج عنوة في المظاهرات؟ هل الحرية في قتل طفل بريء ليس له ذنب سوى أنه حلب؟
من يفعل هذا العمل من السهل عليه أن يختطف طفلا ويعذبه ويمثل به ومن ثم يتهم الأمن بهذه الفعلة من أجل تشويه صورة النظام ومن ثم يثيروا حقد عائلة الطفل ومن الممكن أن يكون انتماؤه إلى عشيرة فتنضم العشيرة كلها إلى قافلة المتظاهرين ويكونوا هم الرابحين
أرجوكم أرجوكم اذكروا هذه القصة لأن لاأحد يذكرها فالخوف يلجم الألسنة

May 29th, 2011, 2:23 pm


Nafdik said:


I know you are well meaning and want the best for syria, but when you copy a comment from a site or a reader letter there really is no credibility.

I know you will tell me that the other side does e same but since you constantly complain about the other side why do you do the same?

This incident could or could not have happened but the fact that somebody typed it somewhere gives it no credibility. And repeating such things makes your whole point of view (which i highly respect) less credible.

May 29th, 2011, 2:56 pm


jad said:

I’m putting it not because I trust arab times, but because when I read it I thought it’s a lie, however, when I read a news about a kid killed on the highway close to Jisr Alshghoour on Syria news while he was he was with his family I thought it maybe true.
I’m not just sharing what I read.

May 29th, 2011, 3:24 pm


Alex said:

Nafdik, Jad,

Not that I believe this story anymore than I believe an opposition source’s story (maybe true maybe not), but one of the readers of SC wrote to the lady who wrote on Arab Times and she replied to him with the following:

الأخ ****
شكرا على مشاعركم الجميلة وأتمنى أن تبقوا على تواصل ومعرفة لما يجري في بلدنا الحبيب لكي تخبروا الجميع في ديار الغربة بالصورة الصحيحة والحقيقية الغير زائفة
العائلة تم ايقافها في حمص بالقرب من تلبيسة حيث تجري فيها احداث فظيعة اليوم حيث ذهب ضحيتها من الجيش العدد الكثير
أخي : إن ابن أخي يخدم في الجيش الخدمة الالزامية وهو في درعا وهو يزودني بأخبار يشيب لها الولدان
احدى الحوادث كان عندما كان يتناول طعام العشاء في قطعته العسكرية وفوجئوا بهجوم وحشي ذهب ضحيته أربعة من أصدقائه ماذنب هؤلاء
والله إن قلبي ينفطر عليه ولاأصدق أنه سيعود إلينا يوما
هل تعلم ماذا قال لي ضاحكا؟
لقد قال لي: عمتي بعد دراستي الجامعية طوال هذه السنين فأصبحنا نعمل الآن “أندونيسية” ويقصد بهذا كخادم
هل تعلم لماذا؟
لأنهم أصبحوا كالخدم لأهل درعا يطرقون عليهم الأبواب ويسألونهم مايحتاجونه من طعام وشراب ودواء وكل مايحتاجونه
والعالم كله يقول أن درعا محاصرة والجيش يضربها
وأقسم لك هذا ما يحصل الجيش يخدم الشعب والشعب (الذي لاعلاقة له) يطلب نزول الجيش
أما هنا في حلب فلا يعكر صفونا سوى رؤيتنا للأخبار من قنوات مغرضة فآليت على نفسي ألا أشاهد الأخبار منذ الآن

May 29th, 2011, 3:59 pm


Louai said:

132. Tara

i enjoyed reading your comment , i am one of the people who thought you probably an extremist because of all the anger in your comments that reminded me of the anger of extremist Imams when preaching , forgive my prejudice please.

you wrote what you stand for and i admire it ,i am new here as well but a i had chance to read some of the old blogs of SC and i noticed something very important, this thing is that most of people who are seen here as ‘pro-regime’ they are NOT !! , they reflect the real national opposition in Syria most of them are not happy with the regime and used to be and still very critical to the government and demanding change BUT the difference is after what happening in Syria most of them and including me cant not call it a revolution for freedom,if you read carefully their comments they do not defend ‘the regime’ they are mostly against the violence revolutionists and against the way the change need to be achieved .

if this revolution succeeded the civil war is a guarantee and that what none of the national opposition is tolerating .

the president give promises of reform and the reform started already however its clear that there are some groups who don’t care about the reform and working against it as JAD said because their aim is to ISKAT ALNIZAM only what ever the cost is .

in the last few days we saw how important rule 3ar3oor in this revolution .its alarming that after we searched for a leader or some one who has influence of the groups who are causing the chaos to find out its 3ar3oor !!
i do not want to live in a country that people like 3ar3oor has any leading rule in..

May 29th, 2011, 5:05 pm


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