Former Secretary James Baker Commenting On Syria – The Charlie Rose Show

James Baker, Former Secretary of State appeared on the Charlie Rose Show last night. His comments on Syria start on the 16-minute mark. Mr. Baker is always worth listening to. Set below are some quotes from the interview:

“I am not a big fan of what we did in Libya even though I am glad to see Gaddafi gone.  We don’t know who these people are, the Free Syrian Army and all those people.  Syria is a whole lot of a different case than Libya. We need to proceed very cautiously. We are broke. We don’t need another major engagement that we cannot fund. Assad has lost legitimacy. You can’t murder your own people and expect to survive for very long and when he goes, and my view ultimately he will go. That is not all that bad for us from the standpoint of the situation with Iran. “


Ousting Syria’s Assad through a ‘soft landing  – By David Ignatius

“Maybe it’s time for Syrian revolutionaries to take “yes” for an answer from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and back a U.N.-sponsored “managed transition” of power there, rather than rolling on toward a civil war that will bring more death and destruction for the region.

We should learn from recent Middle East history and seek a non-military solution in Syria — even with the inevitable fuzziness and need for compromise with unpleasant people.

The alternative to a diplomatic soft landing is a war that shatters the ethnic mosaic in Syria. It’s easy to imagine Sunni militias gaining control of central cities such as Homs, Hama and Idlib, while Alawites retreat to parts of Damascus and Latakia province in the north. Assad might still claim to be president in this scenario, but he would be little more than a warlord (albeit one with access to chemical weapons). It’s a grim scenario in which Western air power would have limited effect.”

Arab Spring Turns to Economic Winter on More Joblessness  – Bloomberg

To create jobs for their young populations, Arab economies need to integrate, according to an Oxford University study published in December by Adeel Malik and Bassem Awadallah, a former Jordanian finance minister. It highlights restrictions on the movement of investment, goods and people across borders.

The result, in an Arab world with a population of 350 million, is “insignificant” levels of internal trade and regional markets that are “cut off from each other and from the rest of the world,” they wrote. It can be cheaper for a Jordanian company to import from the U.K. than from nearby Lebanon, while “visa requirements for traveling within the region can sometimes be as cumbersome as the journey itself.

Whoever takes office will have to win back people like Mohammed, Ahmed and the others camped outside the Libyan Embassy trying to flee Egypt. Poverty and unemployment have clouded their view of the revolution they supported.

“There is no change,” said Mohammed. “We want to feel that we have rights in our own country. Who feels that way?” he asked, looking at the men gathered around him. Most replied: “No one!”

Threat to Assad remains despite claims of victory – Financial Times

Bashar al-Assad is acting victorious, marching under the gaze of state television crews into the ruins of the Baba Amr district of Homs, the city bombarded by his forces for nearly a month. In TV footage this week, the Syrian leader is seen surrounded by loyalists described as residents, though most of the inhabitants have fled. He blames his enemies for the devastation and promises to rebuild Baba Amr.

Mr Assad’s tour was another grotesque show of force aimed at humiliating the rebellious people of the district, who faced collective punishment for allowing Free Syrian Army fighters to protect them. It was also a manifestation of a renewed self-confidence following the regime’s seizure of a series of strongholds that had fallen under rebel control and brought the armed opposition dangerously close to the gates of Damascus.

The problem for Mr Assad, however, is that the Annan plan gives no relief from the most dangerous threat he faces. That threat has never been from the armed rebels but from the peaceful demonstrators who continue to stage protests more than a year after the eruption of the revolt. “As soon as a ceasefire takes hold, Bashar falls because the people will be on the streets in millions, even in Damascus,” says Samir Seifan, a Syrian economist who has joined the opposition. “There will be no need for the FSA whose members know that demonstrations are what will bring down the regime.” Mr Assad, insists Mr Seifan, can score military gains but he cannot win the war against the popular uprising.


Comments (598)

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551. Syria no Kandahar said:

The next jealous dudes of Syria will be held in Telabib .

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April 1st, 2012, 8:27 am


552. majedkhaldoun said:

Tommorow Annan will talk in the UN, I say we have enough meetings, they are not accomplishing nothing,,Arming FSA with weapons that enable them to defend the syrian people must be a priority, UN must issue an order under 7th chapter to stop military actions,and send observers.short of that,chaos will follow,and more refugee to Turkey, who will find it important for its security to intervene, and I am sure things will get worse.

Barack Obama has not been effective leader,and the syrian issue will be a campaign issue.

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April 1st, 2012, 8:31 am


553. Mina said:

If you’ve missed it

Maybe that explains why now the AL hang posters in English for their conferences.

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April 1st, 2012, 8:35 am


554. Mina said:

Who said that Jordan was not interested in opening its borders to allow weapon shipments from the Al Saud?

At the same time, if true, how does that get printed in the WSJ?

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April 1st, 2012, 8:55 am


555. zoo said:

Joshua Landis is all over this article.. (Read also the comments..)
Is Turkey irrelevant? There is not a single mention of Turkey in the “Plan B”.

The hunt for ‘plan B’ – planning for ‘the day after’ in Syria
By Elise Labott, CNN Foreign Affairs Reporter
Many a senior administration official has summed up the SNC in two words: “A mess.”

The characterization from European and Arab diplomats may be more diplomatic, but no less critical of the SNC’s lack of leadership, organizational skills and ideas.

The U.S. is hoping these expats can deliver. They are telling you they can, but their actions and infighting are telling you they can’t,” said the University of Oklahoma’s Joshua Landis, who writes Syria Comment, a daily newsletter on Syrian politics. “The Obama administration fears they will implode or be overtaken by actors within Syria who are better connected to forces on the ground. The Obama administration doesn’t want to be caught going down the same yellow brick trail as the Bush administration did when it backed the Iraqi National Council only to discover that it didn’t have much purchase with Iraqi society.”

“The next ruler of Syria is likely to emerge out of the battlefield. The Assad regime will have to be pulled down by force. The Syrian who emerges from the fierce competition underway among opposition leaders within Syria will have developed loyalty, a broad following, leadership, and strategic vision,” said newsletter writer Landis. “The spoils are not going to go to the Harvard grad or someone at USIP. No American political party works that way. They give it to the people that worked for them and the ones that win.”
While not abandoning the SNC entirely, senior officials say the Obama administration in recent months has begun to cast a much wider net for Syrians who can run Syria the day after al-Assad falls. The United States could no longer put all of its eggs in the SNC’s basket.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:09 am


556. Tara said:

83 countries and organizations participated in the FOS conference.

A doctor from Baba Amr briefed the FOS participants of what has happened in Homs. Also, the assistsnt of the minister of oil participated.

SNC I believe is hailed as the SOLE legitimate representative of the Syrian people.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:19 am


557. Alan said:

MEDITERRANEAN SEA (March 24, 2012) The U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN 65) participates in a maneuvering exercise with the Royal Netherlands Navy frigate HNLMS De Ruyter (F804), the German navy frigate FGS Rheinland-Pfals (F209), the U.S. Navy guided-missile cruiser USS Vicksburg (CG 69), the Royal Canadian navy frigate HMCS Charlottetown (FFH 339), and the Spanish navy frigate Alvaro de Bazan (F 101). Enterprise is supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of responsibility. (U.S. Navy video by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jared King/Released)

USS Enterprise and Foreign Ships Conduct Maneuvering Exercise

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April 1st, 2012, 9:21 am


558. Tara said:

Bosnia prime minister urged the international community not to repeat in Syria it’s mistake in Bosnia.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:23 am


559. bronco said:

#556 Majedalkhadoon

I think that nothing of that will happen. The UN can not request chapter 7 for an UNSC resolution that does exist. If any UNSC resolution will emerge, it will be based on the Annan plan with ‘obligation’ for the opposition to depose their weapons and the obligation of countries to stop delivery of weapons to the opposition. So that will not happen soon, but it may happen after a while.

Turkey will start to have serious problems with the refugees as many would want to settle in Turkey and Turkey refuse to grant them residence. In addition there are many spies within the refugees and this will create increased security issues in the camps.

The PKK will become more active on the northern borders and Turkey will be obliged to accept that Bashar al Assad is here to stay until there are elections.

Turkey is stuck and impotent, the proof is that the above Plan B posted by ZOO totally ignores Turkey.

The players were Qatar, KSA and Turkey, now it’s the UN.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:23 am


560. Alan said:

562 Link ?

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April 1st, 2012, 9:26 am


561. Tara said:


You predicted the demise of the SNC. The SNC was hailed today by 83 countries during the FOS as the legitimate rep of the Syrian people. What say you?

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April 1st, 2012, 9:27 am


562. irritated said:

#555. Syria no Kandahar said:

“The next jealous dudes of Syria will be held in Telabib .”

I would suggest Manama… Hotels are empty, they need tourists, and thanks to the Saudi Army it is secure..
Obama in Manama…

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April 1st, 2012, 9:27 am


563. Tara said:


I just heard it on Aljazeera. This was reiterated by the Turkish foreign minister during his press conference at the conclusion of the FOS meeting in response to a journalist question pointing to the similarity between the suffer g of the Syrian people and the Bosnians.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:31 am


564. Alan said:

Dr. Jihad Maqdisi: Syria Committed to Positively Cooperate with Kofi Annan

DAMASCUS, (SANA)_ Syria is committed to ‘positively cooperate’ with the UN Envoy to Syria, Kofi Annan, reiterated Dr. Jihad Maqdisi, Foreign and Expatriates Ministry Spokesman, asserting that the basics for Syria in dealing with Mr. Annan’s mission or others lie in preserving the sovereignty of Syria as well as in the non breaching to Syria’s national security and stability, and in the logical and symmetrical implementation- of Annan’s 6-point Plan-.

Interviewed by the Syrian Satellite TV yesterday evening, Maqdisi declared that a protocol is to be signed as to organize the issue of observers to reach to the pacification: ‘Syria is soon to receive a negotiating technical team –for talks- between Syria and the United Nations regarding mechanisms of implementation,’ said Dr. Maqdisi.

“Syria calls on the world to help it instead of exerting pressures on it. Syria does welcome the objective of any initiative if its aim were to assist Syria in achieving the reforms and stabilizing the country,’ added the Foreign and Expatriates Ministry Spokesman.

Maqdisi asserted that the battle as to down the State in Syria failed and that the battle for stabilization and upgrading the renewed Syria started on the way of development and reforms. Dr. Maqdisi urged Mr. Annan to tour the countries which finance, host and encourage the opposition.

The presence of the illegitimate armed elements within the opposition components is clearly documented internationally and legally and is acknowledged by the latest report issued by Arab Observers Mission, outlined Maqdisi.


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April 1st, 2012, 9:35 am


565. bronco said:

#565 Tara

Link please?

The last I read

“The leader of the opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) Burhan Ghalioun called on the international community to recognize the group as the sole representative of the Syrian people.

French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said ahead of the meeting in Istanbul that France and Turkey would like to recognize the SNC as “the legitimate representative body of the Syrian people”, but not every member of the Friends of Syria group supports that move.­”

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April 1st, 2012, 9:35 am


566. Ghufran said:

Not so fast, SNC:

The SNC has a lot of work to do before it can become the “sole rep” of the Syrian people, first they have to prove they really represent the whole opposition, or most of it, then they have to show that the opposition they represent speaks for the majority of Syrians. The SNC is at best a sizable, but shrinking, opposition force, not similar to the PLO for example, any claims beyond this is hot air.

FOS after all may be a waste of time and money and I am still waiting to see how and when they will help Syrians in need, people can not eat articles or buy gasoline with slogans. One disgusting position was the call by Arabi to deal with Syria under UNSC chapter 7, translation: bomb Syria to the ground. This is the AL chief, enjoy the lie:
أمة عربية واحده

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April 1st, 2012, 9:37 am


567. Alan said:

Syria prevents terrorist groups from Infiltrating the country

Informed Syrian authorities say they have succeeded in foiling an armed terrorist group’s attempt to infiltrate into the country from Lebanon, the country’s SANA news agency reports.

The terrorist group was trying to enter Syria from the border village of Ba’youn in Talkalakh, Homs countryside, the agency said on Saturday.

The officials added that a number of armed men were gunned down or injured in clashes with Syrian Special Forces with the group on the Syria-Lebanon border.

In addition to the clashes, automatic weapons, explosive devices and other ammunition were seized from the terrorist group, SANA said.

According the agency, Syrian government forces also discovered a warehouse for weapons in the Baba Amr district in the flashpoint city of Homs.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March 2011.

The West and the Syrian opposition blame Damascus for the year-long turmoil, but the government says “terrorists” are responsible for the unrest, which it says is being orchestrated from abroad.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said on February 20 that “some foreign countries” are fueling the turmoil in Syria by supporting and funding “armed terrorist groups fighting against the government.”

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April 1st, 2012, 9:39 am


568. bronco said:

#567 Tara

Turkey has been comparing Syria to Rwanda, Bosnia, Libya etc.. and Bashar to Hitler, Qaddafi etc…

I think that is all the enraged and impotent Turkey has been able to do after having been rebuffed by Bashar on their ‘friendly advices and deadlines’.

I think the USA and the EU are subtly making Erdogan pay for his arrogance and rejection toward Israel by ignoring him and leaving him alone to deal with the mess he has created in his relationship with Syria.

Look at the “Plan B” article posted by ZOO in CNN., Turkey is not even mentionned once.
Most Arab countries are distancing themselves from Turkey after it became clear Erdogan’s AKP wants to spread the Moslem Brotherhood agenda in the Arab Spring and pose as a “model” for the Arab Spring.

Israel is certainly rejoicing of that… and Turkey more and more politically isolated.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:47 am


569. Tara said:

Bronco #569

I heard it on Aljazeera during the press conference. We will have to wait for a physical link.

In any case, the SNC is alive and kicking. Yes, it has committed some mistakes but that was part of the “growing pains” and political maturity, not unexpected given 40 years of a dictatorship that killed any political life in the Syrian society.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:49 am


570. bronco said:

#573 Tara

“not unexpected given 40 years of a dictatorship that killed any political life in the Syrian society.”

Sorry, this is a very commonly used and poor excuse for a bunch of inept, egomaniac, arrogant and corrupted people.

What about the An Nahda of Tunisia? and the TNC of Libya formed in 2 weeks? Or the united opposition in Bahrain? Were they not under a similar ‘dictatorship’?

If you prefer to hang on the SNC as a bunch of students learning their job, let us give them 2 or 3 years to get their BA with the motherly help of Turkey, Qatar and KSA. In the meantime let’s talk realpolitik.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:58 am


571. bronco said:

514. jad said:

“It seems that the ottoman sultan is changing his mind about the Syrian election at the same day of the enemies of Syria, strange!

Free elections in Syria can end violence, says PM Erdoğan””


Erdogan is stuck, he is loosing politically with its neighbours.

His row with Israel has isolated him from the USA, his row about Cyprus has isolated him from the EU, his declarations in Egypt and Tunisia has isolated him from the Arab Spring countries, his row with Syria has isolated him from Iran. He has not been able to attract Hamas in Turkey. He is overflown with refugees. He has increased problems with the Kurds and his baby the SNC is seriously sick and the FOS in Istanbul smells bad.

What else can he do except calling for elections in Syria.

The big surprise will be if Bashar is re-elected, I think he will jump in the Bosphorus with Davutoglu.

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April 1st, 2012, 10:11 am


572. Tara said:


I hate to admit it but the Syrians are similar to Lebanese.. In that we are all leaders or wanna be.. You can hardly find any people to lead.

The concept of subordination is very difficult for us to grasp. May be a psychological reaction to a long-standing oppression.

I myself had very difficult time when I first joined my firm with “subordination”. I was always the rebel and did not want to be bossed around. I learned the democratic way to “rebel” slowly but grudgingly .. And was not at ease until… I became part of the leadership..

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April 1st, 2012, 10:18 am


573. irritated said:

#468 Omen

“damn, that was frustrating to read. where are the wealthy expat syrians willing to fund operations? surely snc could lobby such people.”

I hope you are already contributing and spreading the good word among your rich friends

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April 1st, 2012, 10:22 am


574. Alan said:

“damn, that was frustrating to read. where are the wealthy expat syrians willing to fund operations? surely snc could lobby such people.”

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April 1st, 2012, 10:32 am


575. Mina said:

The only thing they seem to agree on is talking about money. Don’t they have a psychological problem?
Opposition says Syrian rebel fighters to get salaries

Rebels fighting the government of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria will be paid salaries, the opposition Syrian National Council has announced.

Money will also be given to soldiers who defect from the government’s army, the SNC added, after a “Friends of the Syrian people” summit in Turkey.

Conference delegates said wealthy Gulf Arab states would supply millions of dollars a month for the SNC fund. (…)”

So soon we’ll hear it is legitimate for Israel to pay mercenaries to fight the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, for example, ot the Iranians to pay Hamas fighters in Gaza? Wages and kalashnikovs for all?

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April 1st, 2012, 10:51 am


576. Alan said:

Hundreds of Syrians rally for Assad in Istanbul

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April 1st, 2012, 10:53 am


577. Ghufran said:

Turkey needs to get more oil from KSA after the US asked Erdogan to abide by sanctions on Iran, but what is going to happen to the $ 18 billion annual trade with Iran and the 200,000 barrel of oil Turkey gets every day from Tehran?

Turkey does not want conflicts and wars in the region,regardless of what you hear and read, what the Turks want is more trade, more influence in the region and a tamed Kurdish nation. Do not compare Turkey to the GCC, there is a hundred year difference between the two entities politically, culturally and economically. The GCC has money but hardly anything else, with the notable exception of the UAE thriving trade position. If there is a need for an Arab Spring, the GCC should top the list. Call me when Saudi women are allowed to drive or vote, the only thing those Sheikhs can do is corrupt more Syrian and Lebanese politicians and push their “ulamaa” to vomit outrageous Fatwas that certify second class status of women and criminalize any challenge to ruling families.

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April 1st, 2012, 10:59 am


578. Juergen said:


This is the word I mean: شرنة Have you heard it before?

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April 1st, 2012, 11:04 am


579. Alan said:
Turkey Politics Conference Syria
Friends of Syria gather in Istanbu

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April 1st, 2012, 11:10 am


580. Ghufran said:

We keep hearing about elections,where are those elections?

Do you honestly believe that the regime is willing and able to allow clean elections?

I hope I am not spelling any secretes here,but the Syrian elite and the GCC never trusted the public ability to practice democracy, they in one way or the other believe in the virtue of political kingdoms regardless of what name they use for their countries.

Without continuous pressure from the public and diplomatic and personal sanctions from the world community, the ruling elite will not allow clean and fair elections. Have you asked yourself why the GCC prefers chaos over a political peaceful transition?

Chaos will give them the opportunity to install a puppet regime in Syria and tell their own people: look what happens when you revolt against ” walie alamr”.

In that sense,the corrupt leaders of Syria are on the same page with the GCC, they both fear democracy and do not want people to mature politically.

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April 1st, 2012, 11:13 am


581. DAWOUD said:

568. Alan

Why was Jihad Maqdisi, who was a diplomat in the U.S. with “diplomatic immunity,” recalled from Washington D.C. more than 10 years ago?
Wasn’t it because he and his wife were caught shop-lifting from a Washington area shopping mall?

I guess being a shop-lifter and a thief do not disqualify a person from serving in the Syrian gov’t. Heck! Asma is stealing and embezzling Syrian people’s money everyday in order to buy Harry Potter books and expensive Parisian decorations!!!!!!!!

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April 1st, 2012, 11:15 am


582. Alan said:

#565 Tara
Link please?
The last I read
US-NATO SPONSORED CRISIS: “Hunger Games” March in the Balkans

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April 1st, 2012, 11:16 am


583. jna said:


Ha. Gulf countries trying to buy a new regime in Syria.

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April 1st, 2012, 11:20 am


584. ann said:

Iraqi PM says Syrian regime not to fall – 2012-04-01

“The Syrian regime will not fall by force. Why should it fall? (While) our job as Arab and Muslims to go to put out and surround the crisis of Syria,” Maliki told a news conference in Baghdad.

“We (Iraq) want a peaceful political solution for the (Syrian) crisis, therefore, we reject any arming for the (Syrian) opposition to overthrow the regime by force that may leave greater (negative) impact in the region,” Maliki said.


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April 1st, 2012, 11:22 am


585. Alan said:

585. DAWOUD said:
568. Alan
You call names within the begun war of nerves including on this blog! it is not interesting to me in this psychological field with you to argue! it not geopolitics! excuse!

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April 1st, 2012, 11:25 am


586. DAWOUD said:

Anybody posting soon on HER blog the English translation of Hasan Nasr@@@ latest cult of personality & propaganda speech?

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April 1st, 2012, 11:27 am


587. jad said:

Dear Mr. Mjabali
I’m very sorry for your lost, my deepest sympathy to you and to their families.

I think that we are wasting our times on the Nusayri/Majoos haters, I tried many times. I think their hate blinded them from seeing their true selves forever.

As for the provocative yanki Omen who keeps ‘calling’, ‘rejoicing’ and ‘hoping’ for Damascus and Syria to be burned, I just want to remind him that more than 4000 of his own soldiers came back from Iraq in boxes after being responsible for hundreds of thousands of lost Iraqi souls with millions of refugees and an ongoing civil war.
Also in one day in 2001 more than 2500 of his own fellow citizens were lost in one terrorist hit, so if he doesn’t see why we are outrageous about his continuous message of death and destruction he defiantly deserve to be called the name I give him until he stops this pathetic provocative writing against Syria.

I’ll keep calling you ‘Jackass’ until you realize that your provocative messages in wishing Syria ill are very disgusting.

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April 1st, 2012, 1:13 pm


588. Antoine said:

Regarding the recent murders of 3 Alawite teachers in Deir al Zour, here is my 2 cents –

It is very foolhardy and provocative for the regime to keep school teachers from Tartous to a hardcore Sunni Arab Bedouin province like Deirezzor, especially given the current political climate. Why do you need someone from Tartous to teach in a school 500 miles away ?

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April 1st, 2012, 1:17 pm


589. Shami said:

[ alert Updated from Spam. Shami, please avoid calls for violent sectarian reprisals. See Syria Comment Rules and Regulations. ]

Mjabali, Ibn Taymiyya is a controversial figure within Sunnism and the ottomans persecuted those who held his views, it didn’t change the fact that with or without Ibn taymiyya, the nusayris will still be considered as heretical by the common agreement of the Muslims .

In the same way, the nusayris consider us as infidels.

And there is no doubt that the genocide that took place in Syria in these decades committed by the nusayris are driven by this minority syndrome built on hatred.

Now I would agree with your views if the Muslims repeat the same massive massacres as those committed by the assadists against the Syrian or arab civilians and take revenge against qardaha by killing for exemple 30 000 alawites in few days, even the most extremist bin ladanist scum will not be able to do that.

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April 1st, 2012, 5:59 pm


590. omen said:

regarding the photo above:

The true Friends of Syria are the decent moral human beings around the World and not two faced idiots in fancy suits.

pretending to do something is worse than doing nothing at all!

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April 1st, 2012, 7:56 pm


591. omen said:

jad i didn’t call for syria to burn. just offices that house nazis.

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April 1st, 2012, 8:00 pm


592. omen said:

jad, you know the true terrorist is assad and this regime.

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April 1st, 2012, 8:11 pm


593. omen said:

579. Ghufran

all of the faults of other countries doesn’t excuse assad’s war crimes.

are you going to spend the rest of your life deflecting responsibility from this regime?

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April 1st, 2012, 8:15 pm


594. omen said:

jad, you’re funny when you’re angry.

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April 1st, 2012, 8:20 pm


595. omen said:

provocative yanki has a certain ring to it. i might adopt it as a nickname.

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April 1st, 2012, 9:20 pm


596. Sunny said:

[alert Added description from Real News Network:

مقابلة هاتفية بين قناة امريكية وصحفي من قناة الجزيرة ]

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April 3rd, 2012, 5:01 pm


597. omen said:

there is something weird going on. i tried to pull up a cnn segment from jan 24th where anderson cooper interviewed former cia agent bob baer. mr. baer said he talks to the syrian faction of muslim brotherhood all the time. they questioned him why doesn’t the u.s. do more to help. mr. baer asked in return what the brothers planned to do with bashar assad? the syrian brothers said they would kill him.

but that’s not what the transcript says. (the original video i tried to pull has been “expired” when other videos in a similar timeline are still active. and i couldn’t find another replicate of the video – when one can usually can – on google or youtube.)

cnn jan 24 transcript:

BAER: Absolutely. Well, you know, I talk to the Muslim brotherhood a lot. And I ask — and they ask me. They say why doesn’t the United States do something? And I said, they’re worried about the sectarian problems. And I said for instance, what are you going to do about the — and the Syrian brothers say we’re going to kill them. What do you think? And I said, well, what do you expect?

see the dash in the paragraph? baer said “assad” in the live segment but in the transcript, bashar’s name got blanked out. i know baer said assad because i was skeptical of the claim at the time and tweeted about it.

a few days later, in a separate abc write up, this baer account of promised brotherhood reprisal against a singular figure turns into a plural:

Baer says the situation in Syria can be illustrated by a conversation he had recently with a Syrian Muslim brother who wanted to know why the U.S. won’t do more to help. Baer told him it was because the U.S. fears a civil war in Syria.

“And he said, ‘Well you know just get rid of the regime and everything will be OK,’ and I said, ‘What are you going to do with the minority ruling sect,’ and he said, half jokingly, ‘We’re going to kill them,'” Baer said.

baer goes from “him” to “them.”

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April 9th, 2012, 2:21 pm


598. omen said:

also interesting from the abc piece cited above was this admission from bob baer:

“Let me put this very cynically, it’s probably in America’s interest that the current [assad] government subdues a rebellion and a civil war,” Baer said.

It’s not at all like Libya, where most Libyans are Sunni Muslims and getting rid of Muammar Gaddafi didn’t lead to a Sunni-Shia divide.

how many articles have you run across that discuss what is in america’s interest re the syria conflict?

this is in keeping with earlier news that reported president obama was discouraging qatar and saudis from arming the rebels.

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April 9th, 2012, 2:38 pm


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