News Round Up (13 January 2013)

This is the saddest Friday demonstration video- town of Binnish. via Ben Hubbard

Syrian foreign ministry in a letter to UN claims that more than 1000 factories have been dismantled in Aleppo and sold to Turkey by rebels and gunmen. I have asked an Aleppine factory owner if this is true. His answer:

“I don’t know about the numbers, but many factories have been stripped and sold. Of course, Assad is responsible for this by not offering to step aside and setting in place a process for a smooth transfer of power.” My own factory has not been stripped, but the safe box with all operating expenses was taken by the local militia commander. My foreman negotiated with him and he has since protected the factory building. It is closed and all employees have been dismissed. A factory near to mine, which is owned by a Christian who was known to be close to the regime, has been stripped.

Speaking of distressing, read what Ribal and Rifat al-Assad are trying to do to Chris Doyle and his wonderful wife, Rim. Extra-ordinary. Thuggery reaches into the British parliament. MP Daniel Kawczynski has taken up the Assad cause and savaged the Doyles on Rifat’s behalf. Why would he do that? See Syria: Lies and slurs for those who dare to challenge Ribal and Rifat Assad – Global Arab Network.

Video: Latest developments in Syria following Assad’s speech – Aljazeera presenter Hazem Sika discusses with guests Fawaz Gerges, director of the Middle East Centre and professor of International Relations at London School of Economics; James Jatras, a former US diplomat and a senior fellow at the American University in Moscow; and Shashank Joshi, an associate fellow at Royal United Services.

Assad still confident that he can control Syria,” by Liz Sly in Wash Post

First Legislative council established by National C0uncil for Idlib province


إدلب تشهد تشكيل أول مكتب تنفيذي للمحافظة غير خاضع للحكومة السورية13
يناير 2013 – 06:16 م : إدلب، أكرم الإدلبي
مؤتمر تشكيل المكتب

شهدت مدينة الريحانية التركية اختيار مكتب تنفيذي عن محافظة ادلب، وهو أول مكتب تنفيذي غير خاضع لسلطة الحكومة السورية المركزية، يتم تشكيله في محافظة سورية، منذ اندلاع الأزمة عام 2011.

وقال رئيس المكتب المنتخب، وعضو الإئتلاف الوطني عن محافظة ادلب الأستا عدنان ناصر الرحمون، لـ”سيريا بوليتيك” إنه “بلغ عدد الحاضرين للمؤتمر 400 ناشط من محافظة ادلب، منهم 120 ناشط يشكلون الامانة العامة، وقام أعضاء الأمانة العامة باختيار 10 أعضاء للمكتب وأضيف اسمي كوني عضو الائتلاف عن محافظة ادلب، حيث جرى انتخاب رئيس المكتب, وحُصر الانتخاب والترشح بين أعضاء المكتب”.

“Securing Lebanon’s Offshore Energy Fields Raises New Security Challenges.”  by Nick Heras – Jamestown

Syria: A jihadi paradise
By Pepe Escobar, Jan 11, 2013, Asia Times

….If you want to know what’s really going in Syria, look no further than Hezbollah secretary-general Sheikh Nasrallah. He does tell it like it is.

Then there’s what Ammar al-Musawi, Hezbollah’s number 3 – as in their de facto foreign minister – told my Italian colleaguem Ugo Tramballi. The most probable post-Assad scenario, if there is one, will be “not a unitary state, but a series of emirates near the Turkish border, and somebody proclaiming an Islamic state”. Hezbollah’s intelligence – the best available on Syria – is adamant: “one third of the combatants in the opposition are religious extremists, and two-thirds of the weapons are under their control.” The bottom line – this is a Western proxy war, with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) acting as a “vanguard” for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Rebel area shows limits of rebel push for Damascus
By By BEN HUBBARD | Associated Press

Twin airstrikes by government jets on a large, rebel-held suburb of Damascus on Thursday sheered the sides off apartment towers and left residents digging through rubble for the dead and wounded.

The bombing of Douma came amid a wave of attacks on rebellious districts of the Syrian capital, part of the government’s efforts to keep rebel fighters out of President Bashar Assad’s seat of power. Late Thursday, a car bomb exploded at a gas station inside the city itself, killing at least nine people, activists said.

Douma, the largest patch of rebel-held ground near Damascus, illustrates why the opposition’s advance on the capital has bogged down. Despite capturing territory and setting up committees to provide basic services, the rebels lack the firepower to challenge Assad’s forces and remain helpless before his air force….In November, residents formed a civilian council to provide services for the estimated one-third of Douma’s residents who have not fled the violence….Douma has more than a dozen rebel brigades, and the city’s fighters have joined battles in many other areas around the capital….

The Syrian Conflict Is Not About Democracy

Post by Extension Blog

October 22, 2012


Mark Tomass, former research fellow at the Harvard Center for Middle Eastern Studies, provides insight into the Syrian civil war and a suggested path ahead for US policy. Tomass was born and raised in the Assyrian Quarter of Aleppo, Syria. He lived through the Muslim Brother’s rebellion of 1979–82 and the Lebanese Civil War of 1975–90.

The truth about US support of Syrian rebels

…The administration is betting this kind of qualified support will help overturn the regime. And the United States will appear to be on the side of victors. Its real motive is to weaken Iran’s regional influence by a proxy war that would destroy its ally….US support for the rebels and those who call for an interventionist US policy are under the illusion that the antigovernment rebellion is a prodemocracy one. But the rebels have no conception of freedom and democracy in the Western tradition….

Iraq War Poll Finds Most Think War Was Mistake” (Huffington Post)

Syrian refugee’s astonishing story of survival – BBC

…”I was stopped at a checkpoint. The (pro-government) gunmen asked me where I was from. They asked for my passport and ID. They took everything I had on me: my phones, my gold rings. They put me in the boot of a car – four other guys were already in it. And they took us to an air force intelligence building.

“After three days with no food or water, late at night, the gunmen told us that they would take us to another station. They took us and they put all of us into a car – there were 21 of us. They drove us to a deserted area.”

Second life

Mohammed peeked from his blindfold.

“They put us all on our knees – all 21 of us. They began firing. I passed out when they shot at us. I woke up after 10-15 minutes and saw the gunmen’s car leaving. I saw that everybody around me was dead.”

Mohammed was seriously injured.

“I was hit by five bullets,” he says, pointing to each of the wounds in turn. “One of them hit my ear, one went into my shoulder. Two hit in my leg, and another hit my hip.”

He rolls up his trouser leg to show the wounds in his ankle.

“I got up and started walking but kept falling every 10 metres. I knocked on a door and a woman answered…

Hospitals targeted in the Syrian war as the wounded face dwindling options – CNN International

Syria conflict: Brahimi says Assad can’t be part of transition – live updates – Via Matt Weaver

Beirut (DPA) — Syria’s state-run media Thursday lashed out at United Nations envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, calling him a “puppet” of the West after he criticized a plan by President Bashar al-Assad to end the country’s nearly two-year conflict.

“Why didn’t Mr. Brahimi, when he visited Syria last month, express such views to President al-Assad? He waited until he got his instructions from the Western countries and made his statement on Wednesday,” Syrian television said.

Al Watan, a state-run newspaper, said Brahimi “has taken off the mask of impartiality he has worn” since he was appointed for the mission in August.

Syria And Iraq: A Five State Solution?
January 9, 2013, By Jacob Wolinsky

…Split up Iraq and Syria into five separate states. A druze state in southern Syria, Alawite state on the coast, a Sunni state spanning across the borders, a Shia state in Southern Iraq, and a Kurdish state across the Northern borders of both countries. As noted, I do NOT want the US or Europe to do this, but it could be an option for the citizens of each country to implement. I doubt the five state solution will happen, but want to throw out the idea as one way to decrease a tension in the region….

Role of Syrian Women Evolves as War Rages On By Carol Morello | The Washington Post

…because the men in their lives urged them to stay away as the revolt turned into a much more dangerous civil war — they are playing a more traditional role in humanitarian relief, bringing food, medicine and clothing to refugees. The fighting is almost exclusively the province of men, and relatively few women are among opposition political leaders….

But at the grass-roots level, few women attend the political conferences held around Turkey to discuss building a transitional government and institutions if Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is toppled. “About 200 people were at a conference I attended. Maybe 10 of them were women,” said Rania Kisar,….“A lot of women could do a great job in politics,” she said. “But society, and the traditional culture, won’t take them seriously.”

Karen Leigh  –  January 08, 2013 – Syria Deeply
An Alawite Nurse in a Sunni Hospital

Traveling through rebel-held parts of Latakia province, in the Jebel Turkman region, we met 34-year-old Umyara, an Alawite nurse working in a field hospital. In Latakia, a stronghold of President Bashar al-Assad, Sunnis and Alawites have lived side by side for centuries. Now, with intense fighting in the Alawite-led regime and the mostly Sunni-led Free Syrian Army, many fear that the animosity could spread to civilians across the religious divide.

The nurse, who asked us not print her full name or photo, speaks on the stairwell outside the hospital’s new surgery room, built with donations from two American medical NGOs. She met us alongside Dr. Mohammed, the Sunni orthopedic surgeon who serves as her boss and the chief of this hopsital.

The hospital has only been open for 20 days; the surgical unit is located underground for safety, as the area is heavily bombed and rocketed by regime forces.

A hospital in Homs, courtesy of Shaam News Network

“Before I came here, I worked for 14 years in the Assad Hospital in Latakia City,” she says. Now her husband and five children have moved to the mountains with her, to hide from regime forces who might be angry with her defection to a Sunni hospital in FSA territory. “I never feel any tension working here – we’re all people with the same degrees, no difference between Sunnis and Alawites in the hospital. We are one medical team.”

But the fact still stands that should Assad be removed from office, Alawite civilians like Umyara could face reprisals from angry Sunnis. “I am surely afraid for my safety after Assad falls,” the nurse says, despite assurances from local FSA leaders.

For now, within the hospital walls, Dr. Mohammed doesn’t see a distinction.

“Most of our patients are Sunni, but it’s no problem with us if someone who comes in is an Alawite…this is why she came to work with us.”

Every day, he says, his staff sees 20-35 patients, most of them injured in the war. A few days ago he treated a patient with cancer and has seen others with diabetes and hypertension. But the hospital doesn’t have have the medicine or resources to properly treat those patients – part of what he describes as a crisis in specialized care, one that now affects nearly every Syrian city.

When we met the doctor had just performed surgery on a young rebel fighter whose palms had practically been blown to pieces in an explosives accident.

The nurse says that as a Sunni fighter, his treatment would have been varied, at best, at her old regime-supported hospital. “I am working here now to help people, all people. Before, the treatment was specialized just for the Alawites.”

At the Assad Hospital, they might treat Sunnis, “but afterwards, the Assad forces come and get them and take them away. This has happened since the beginning of the revolution, since March of last year. I feel better now,” working here….

Dr. Haj was gentle and polite, but spoke with bitterness at how he hears the West assess Syria’s war. “They say that chemical weapons are the red line,” he said, referring to President Obama’s public warning to Syria’s government that a chemical strike might prompt an American military response.

“But we are dying from other ways. It is not good enough to die from shelling or disease? The international community laughs at our suffering.”…

Mr. Saleh rattled off what he and his family faced: No heat, no electricity, no money, no medicine, no doctor and no home, except this unlit, borrowed room.

The children sat silently, under shared blankets, bundled in thick clothes. Their father’s soft voice filled the space.

“We don’t know how we will survive the winter,” Mr. Saleh said. “We wait for the mercy of God.”

Comments (222)

ann said:

729. ann said:

The war in Libya was seen as a success, now here we are engaging with the blow back in Mali – Sunday 13 January 2013

Our Government and media may often ignore the price of Western interventions, but in future conflicts and fuel for radical Islamist groups, it is still paid nonetheless

But don’t fall for a narrative so often pushed by the Western media: a perverse oversimplification of good fighting evil, just as we have seen imposed on Syria’s brutal civil war. Amnesty reports brutality on the part of Malian government forces, too. When the conflict originally exploded, Tuaregs were arrested, tortured, bombed and killed by the security forces, “apparently only on ethnic grounds”, Amnesty says. Last July, 80 inmates arrested by the army were stripped to their underwear, jammed into a 5sqm cell; cigarettes were burnt into their bodies; and they were forced to sodomise each other. Back in September 2012, 16 Muslim preachers belonging to the Dawa group were rounded up at a checkpoint and summarily executed by the army. These are acts committed by those who are now our allies

No scrutiny, no build-up, no parliamentary vote, not even a softening-up exercise. Britain is now involved in yet another military conflict in a Muslim land, or so we have been informed. British aircraft are flying to Mali while France bombs the country, arguing that Islamist militia must be driven back to save Europe from the creation of a “terrorist state”. Amnesty International and West Africa experts warned of the potential disaster of foreign military intervention; the bombs raining on the Malian towns of Konna, Léré and Douentza suggest they have been definitively ignored.

Mali’s current agony has only just emerged in our headlines, but the roots go back generations. Like the other Western colonial powers that invaded and conquered Africa from the 19th century onwards, France used tactics of divide-and-rule in Mali, leading to entrenched bitterness between the nomadic Tuareg people – the base of the current revolt – and other communities in Mali.

To some Westerners, this is a distant past to be ignored, moved on from, and certainly not used to preclude noble interventions; but the consequences are still being felt on a daily basis. Initially, the French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, suggested its colonial legacy ruled out a France-led intervention; its sudden involvement is far more rapid than expected.

But this intervention is itself the consequence of another. The Libyan war is frequently touted as a success story for liberal interventionism. Yet the toppling of Muammar Gaddafi’s dictatorship had consequences that Western intelligence services probably never even bothered to imagine. Tuaregs – who traditionally hailed from northern Mali – made up a large portion of his army. When Gaddafi was ejected from power, they returned to their homeland: sometimes forcibly so as black Africans came under attack in post-Gaddafi Libya, an uncomfortable fact largely ignored by the Western media.

Awash with weapons from Libya’s own turmoil, armed Tuaregs saw an opening for their long-standing dream for national self-determination. As the rebellion spread, the democratically elected President Amadou Toumani Touré was deposed in a military coup and – despite allowing a transitional civilian-led government to take power – the army retains its dominance.

There can certainly be no sympathy for the militia now fighting the Malian government. Originally, it was the secular nationalists of the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad who led the uprising; they have now been pushed aside by Islamist jihadists with a speed that has shocked foreign analysts. Rather than achieving an independent Tuareg state, they have far more sweeping ambitions, linking up with similar groups based in northern Nigeria. Amnesty International reports horrendous atrocities: amputations, sexual violence, the use of child soldiers, and rampant extra-judicial executions.

When the UN Security Council unanimously paved the way for military force to be used at some point last month, experts made clear warnings that must still be listened to. The International Crisis Group urged a focus on a diplomatic solution to restore stability, arguing that intervention could exacerbate a growing inter-ethnic conflict. Amnesty warned that “an international armed intervention is likely to increase the scale of human-rights violations we are already seeing in this conflict”. Paul Rogers, professor of peace studies at Bradford University, has argued that past wars show that “once started, they can take alarming directions, have very destructive results, and often enhance the very movements they are designed to counter”.

It is conceivable that this intervention could – for a time – achieve its goals of pushing back the Islamist militias, and shore up Mali’s government. But the Libyan war was seen as a success, too; and here we are now engaging with its catastrophic blowback. In Afghanistan, Western forces remain engaged in a never-ending war which has already helped destabilised Pakistan, leading to drone attacks that have killed hundreds of civilians and unleashed further chaos. The price of Western interventions may often be ignored by our media, but it is still paid nonetheless.

Western intervention led by France, led by Britain and with possible US drone attacks on the way will undoubtedly fuel the narrative of radical Islamist groups. As Professor Rogers puts it to me, it will be portrayed as “one more example of an assault on Islam”. With the speed and reach of modern forms of communication, radical groups in Western Africa and beyond will use this escalating war as evidence of another front opened against Muslims.

It is disturbing – to say the least – how Cameron has led Britain into Mali’s conflict without even a pretence at consultation. Troops will not be sent, we are told; but the term “mission creep” exists for a reason, and an escalation could surely trigger deeper British involvement. The West has a terrible record of aligning itself with the most dubious of allies: the side we have picked are far from human-rights-loving democrats.

But the consequences could be more profound. As well as spreading further chaos in the region – just as the Libyan war did – France has already put potential terrorist targets on alert, and its allies must be at risk, too. It is the responsibility of all of us to scrutinise what our governments do in our name; if we cannot learn that from Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, then it is hopeless.


January 13th, 2013, 7:25 pm


ann said:

France, failure and Napoleon – 13.01.2013

There is one thing the French are not very good at, and that is fighting, unless, of course, they join their FUKUS Axis friends (France, UK, US) in some cowardly attack against a country with porous borders, such as was the case with Libya. Two hundred years after Napoleon was thrashed in Russia we see Hollande crawling in the footsteps of Sarkozy…

Speaking about Anglo-Saxons, perhaps the F part of the FUKUS Axis does not know what the UK and US allies say about France and the French and the French military behind closed doors. It ain’t pretty… So after France’s imperialistic and cowardly attack against Libya (the country whose Brother Leader was the first international figure to issue an arrest warrant against Al-Qaeda and who allegedly financed Sarkozy’s Presidential election) and after France’s imperialistic involvement in the criminal act of intrusion against Syria, we learn that France has also started adventures elsewhere.

But then again, the main “do-ers” of French military policy are those confined to the prison/mental hospital environment of the Légion Étrangère, let’s once again be honest. And these are, well, the dregs from prisons and mental hospitals who have nowhere else to go and obviously no questions asked by La France which needs to find “men” to do its fighting. Erm…doesn’t EU law have a word to say about this?

And there goes Hollande, like Sarkozy, a sickening little wannabe Napoleon, committing terrorist acts in Mali and botching a raid in Somalia. Mmmmmm… figures. Let’s be honest, what good is France militarily if not bribing foreign officials to accept its military hardware?

Why doesn’t Hollande go and ask his friend Merkel to do France’s fighting? After all, we all saw what the Wehrmacht can do. They did it in 1870, they did it in 1914, they did it in 1940. As France crawls into bed with its master, Germany, it is amazing that it still has the mania that it can do Imperialist stuff, without its Anglo-Saxon bosses alongside. Germany learnt its lesson. France has not.


January 13th, 2013, 7:48 pm


revenire said:

Who is the little kid that wants to carve up the region? Jacob Wolinsky? Gee, Balkanize the region… why didn’t I think of that?


January 13th, 2013, 7:52 pm


Tara said:

Contrast this man to the disgusting father of Asmaa Al Assad.  He is too a doctor.  A doctor from Hell I suppose.

For grandfather Paul McMaster, it was a risk worth taking to save lives – even though he would face mortal danger every day.

And when the bombs go off, you see the fear on people’s faces. You feel crushed by it. And, to be truthful, very frightened. 
And when the bombs go off, you see the fear on people’s faces. You feel crushed by it. And, to be truthful, very frightened.
I’ve got grandchildren, and it’s always the children that stick in my mind, the sheer distress of the babies and their mothers. 

And the children themselves  are so solemn. I remember a girl, about eight years old, who had lost a couple of fingers on one hand. Medically, she was not difficult to treat, but to look at her face as she looked at her hand .  .  . she was so quiet.
The people are immensely distressed; their upset is raw and personal. Everywhere you see anguish written on their faces. 

It is very bleak indeed.


January 13th, 2013, 8:00 pm


ghufran said:

Neocons in the West and Israel have a common dream: dividing the Middle East into smaller weaker more dependent states where Israel stays as the indisputable power that makes arrangements with Turkey and, in Iraq’s case, Iran. The new middle east makes it much easier to get cheap oil, protect Israel, dominates the region, sell goods at a huge profit and keep the sleeping giant, islamic world, in a coma. This is not a conspiracy theory, you see this scenario playing since the invasion of Iraq and before, the early writings about the new middle east dates back to 1999 at least. The willing, or unwilling, participants are the Arab regimes and the Islamist militants. You can not read a newspaper in Europe or the US without seeing an article about dividing Syria, or other arab countries. the easiest way to bring this dream closer to reality, in Syria’s case, is to allow Assad to stay in power and to keep the war going. regardless of the outcome of Syrian war, Israel will have no real security concerns for the next 20 years except its own Arab citizens, Syria will go back to the days when the country was a game and not a player, and the next target will be Hizbullah. Do not count on the palestinians being able to get anything from israel that Israel does not want to give anyway, GCC thugs will be more than happy to “help” make the new Middle east a dream come true.

January 13th, 2013, 8:02 pm


Tara said:

What a sinister invention!

Apple Rejects iOS Game Exploring Syria’s Civil War

Apple’s App Store has rejected a game that allows users to explore the different factions, consequences and outcomes of Syria’s ongoing civil war, because it deals with a “real entity.”

January 13th, 2013, 8:17 pm


AJ said:


Assad’s shemale brigade

We have all heard about women belonging to the regime throwing themselves at the feet of FSA soldiers in the past, including the notorious Assadist prostitute who hit on Abdel Razzak Tlass.

Today emerged this video of a bunch of sexually depraved Shabi7a (Who presumably lost their wives in the hand of the FSA) dressing up as female prostitutes to “entertain” themselves:


January 13th, 2013, 8:21 pm


revenire said:

Ghufran you’re right. The game has always been to destroy Syria as a nation. The ones backing the Salafist apes don’ care how many Syrians they murder.

I feel sorry for anyone so deluded they believe they had a revolution: poor, uneducated, desperate men driven by superstitions were given guns.

The worst criminals are the Saudis and their Gulf allies. They are really pigs.

Syria’s people were truly raped by the world.

The only hope Syria has is for Assad to win and win by killing all the rats.

If the Salafists won France would probably bomb them into the 19th century, with the help of the US – as they’re doing in Mali.

January 13th, 2013, 8:25 pm


revenire said:

AJ I am wearing my wife’s clothes now. I like the soft feel against my skin. It is what all the fashionista shabiha are wearing in 2013. We learned this from François Hollande while we were in Paris.

You should try it.

In fact maybe the FSA should wear this sort of clothing into battle. They might win a few more of them.

January 13th, 2013, 8:28 pm


revenire said:

To Hell rats!

Air strike and missile strike destroys Azaz terrorist headquarters thanks to tip off by locals:

January 13th, 2013, 8:39 pm


ann said:

French troops in Mali to fight Qaeda-linked forces – January 11, 2013

BAMAKO, Mali France’s military started an air operation Friday to help Malian soldiers fight radical Islamists, drawing the former colonial power into a military intervention to oust the al Qaeda-linked militants nine months after they seized control of northern Mali.

The arrival of the French dramatically ups the stakes in a conflict taking place in a swath of lawless desert where kidnappings and brutality have flourished.

It also comes as the Islamists advance ever closer toward the most northern city still under government control and after they fought the Malian military for the first time in months.

Also Friday, Malian President Dioncounda Traore declared a state of emergency on national television that would remain in effect for 10 days and could be renewed.

The president called on mining companies and non-government organizations to give up their pickups and other trucks to the Malian military, raising questions about the capacity of the army.

French President Francois Hollande said Friday that the air operation would last “as long as necessary” and said it was aimed notably at protecting the 6,000 French citizens in Mali. Kidnappers currently hold seven French hostages in the country.

“French army forces supported Malian units this afternoon to fight against terrorist elements,” he said.

The foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, said, “To the question of whether there was an aerial intervention, the response is yes.” He wouldn’t comment on troops on the ground, arguing that such information would give “hints to terrorists.” He said France had discussed the move with U.S. officials earlier Friday.

France’s announcement comes after residents in central Mali said they had seen Western military personnel arriving in the area, and that planes had landed at a nearby airport throughout the night.

Col. Abdrahmane Baby, a military operations adviser for the foreign affairs ministry, also confirmed in the Malian capital of Bamako that French troops had arrived in the country. He gave no details about how many were there or what they specifically were doing.

“They are here to assist the Malian army,” he told reporters in the capital of Bamako.

France has led a diplomatic push for international action in northern Mali but efforts to get an African-led force together, or to train the weak Malian army, have dragged.

The French quickly mobilized after the Islamists seized a key town on Thursday, pushing closer to the army’s major base in central Mali.

The United Nations Security Council has condemned the capture of Konna and called on U.N. member states to provide assistance to Mali “in order to reduce the threat posed by terrorist organizations and associated groups.”

France’s position has been complicated because for months, Hollande has said France would not send ground forces into Mali.

The French foreign minister insisted that the recent advances by the extremists made intervention necessary, and said the aim of the operation is to “stop the advance of criminal and terrorists groups on the south” of Mali.

Late last year, the 15 nations in West Africa, including Mali, agreed on a proposal for the military to take back the north, and sought backing from the United Nations.

The U.N. Security Council authorized the intervention but imposed certain conditions. Those include the training of Mali’s military, which has been accused of serious human rights abuses since a military coup last year sent the nation into disarray.


January 13th, 2013, 9:14 pm


ann said:

Russia Sees Al-Qaeda Growth in Lebanon – 1-14-2013

In preparation for any hazardous security developments, Moscow has formulated a plan to evacuate its nationals from Lebanon, an informed Russian source told Al-Monitor. The evacuation would encompass 33,000 residents and would be carried out by Russian sea vessels, given that the humble capacity of Beirut International Airport would not allow for the evacuation of such a large number of people in a short time.

The Russian source revealed that similar plans to press ahead with evacuation were put on the agenda of other Western countries which, like Russia, would opt for naval evacuations for logistical reasons.

Moscow began studying modalities during the summer to ensure the safety of its citizens in Lebanon and Syria. The measures ranged between giving instructions through the Russian embassies in Beirut and Damascus, and setting emergency plans to be executed if need be. Many Russian citizens in Syria preferred heading back to their homeland. The sophisticated neighborhood of Tijara in Damascus — which had once housed many Russian families — stands witness to this fact, as it has become a ghost town in the two years since the breakout of conflict in Syria.

Meanwhile, Russian citizens in Lebanon did not follow the steps of their peers in Syria. Moscow believes that the stability of Lebanon is not at stake. However, it has voiced its concerns about radical Islamic groups targeting Russian interests in Lebanon, in a violent attempt to denounce Russia’s stance in regard to the crisis in Syria.

Last summer, in a meeting held at the office of the Lebanese Army Intelligence Department’s chief, Maj. Gen. Edmond Fadel, the military attaché of the Russian embassy in Beirut communicated to his French, American and Saudi counterparts the Russian “concern” about potential attacks by al-Qaeda cells in Lebanon. “In particular, we are worried about information indicating that some of these groups intend to target our embassy in Beirut,” he said.

The Saudi military attaché had reservations about the Russian statement, noting that it was essential to verify the information about the existence of al-Qaeda in Lebanon before voicing concerns.

This disparity points to a political, media conflict on the internal and regional level over the presence of al-Qaeda in Lebanon. More precisely, regional countries hold divergent opinions about the source of terrorism in Lebanon. Some, notably Saudi Arabia, see terrorism in Lebanon as a Syrian product, even if the perpetrators act under the auspices of al-Qaeda, since Syria and Iran have achieved breakthroughs into this organization. The opposite opinion warns that al-Qaeda is spreading in Lebanon, feeding on the rampant sectarian division and the weakness of the state in many regions, particularly the North governorate.

Berri: ‘Al-Qaeda plans to assassinate me’

Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri supports the second view. Berri told Al-Monitor that a plan to assassinate him was formulated by a cell affiliated with al-Qaeda, he was informed by Italy. Information collected from various sources indicates that al-Qaeda has set an assassination list in Lebanon including, first and foremost, Berri and the chief of the Lebanese armed forces, Gen. Jean Kahwaji. The plan aimed to destabilize the country and ignite sectarian strife.

A few months earlier, the emir of one of the Gulf states passed information to Berri through a Lebanese official about serious intentions on the part of al-Qaeda to target the stability of Lebanon through various means. First, al-Qaeda planned to incite conflicts within Palestinian camps in Lebanon, which would in turn affect the overall Lebanese climate. In this regard, radical Islamic groups with ties to al-Qaeda — such as Fatah al-Islam and Jund al-Sham — are taking refuge in the Ain al-Helweh camp. Second, the organization would assassinate prominent Lebanese figures in order to spread chaos and create internal divisions.

Lately, Russian diplomats in Beirut have raised the issue of al-Qaeda’s activity in Lebanon. It is thought to be having a negative influence on Russian national security, since Muslim students of Russian citizenship are arriving in Lebanon without the knowledge of the competent authorities in Moscow or the Russian embassy. The students are enrolled in Jinan University in Tripoli, which provides religious studies, while all fees are covered by radical Islamic groups.

The previous data is the subject of a thorough follow-up by Lebanese authorities. However, ever since the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, precise answers have not been provided for the question: Does al-Qaeda have real plans for Lebanon?

Security authorities in Lebanon realize that al-Qaeda is present in all countries of the region, or even most countries of the world. The organization infiltrates through the pores of culture and arms. It is represented either by a dogmatic, cultural environment, military cells or networks that are linked to the international command of al-Qaeda. Yet, from the organization’s point of view, there are some characteristics that render Lebanon unfit to be an arena for Jihad. According to the jihadist jurisprudence — which guides the “legitimate” activities of al-Qaeda — there are two arenas: one for jihad (meaning struggle) and the second for nusra (meaning support). The second arena is used to collect members and infiltrate countries that are considered part of the “arena for Jihad.” It is important to note that jihadist jurisprudence comprises Quranic verses collected by radical Islamic scholars and used as a reference to justify holy warfare against non-believers.

Lebanese security authorities believe that al-Qaeda has classified Lebanon — until now — as part of its arena for nusra. The reason behind this categorization is that the organization has more heated arenas — such as Yemen, Iraq, Afghanistan and currently Syria — to rely on in its international battle. In every country, al-Qaeda searches for two main conditions to establish a military fortress: welcoming religious environments that correspond with its views and vast spaces that provide a fertile ground for hiding tactics. Lebanon has neither. It is small in size, and is characterized by religious diversity.

Thus, al-Qaeda considers Lebanon a supporting ground in the international conflict. Since the outbreak of the crisis in Syria, Lebanon has witnessed developments in terms of al-Qaeda’s activities. The organization is using Lebanon as a support arena for infiltration — particularly into Syria, the Jihad arena. It has also used this country in the past as a portal to Yemen, Iraq, Gulf countries and Europe. In the light of these facts, the increase in the number of cells during the last two years, especially in the North governorate beside the Lebanese-Syrian border and in the Ain al-Helweh camp in the South, is understandable.


January 13th, 2013, 9:35 pm


Observer said:

Brahimi says that Athad cannot be part of the transition and Laughvrov says that it is impossible to have him removed from the transition.
Laughvrov is asking the opposition to counter propose; and so this is the reason why the speech was at the Opera. It is a show to come to the middle ground where there is an opposition regime with Athad as a figure head Prethident.

The one hitch with this Operatic nightmare is that the Prethident thinks he owns 22 million slaves that are working in his farm Thyria Alathad.

Now Laughvrov is talking about international law, how about telling us how does he think the regime is legitimate?

It is a 100% illegitimate regime to its fingertips and toenails.

Laughvrov should be given a lesson about legitimacy. Fully one hour lecture is what he needs.

Justice for Hamza one Shabih at a time in a court of law starting with the Prethident himself.


January 13th, 2013, 9:38 pm


ann said:

US, France plan attacks on Syria airports: Report – Sun Jan 13, 2013

The US and France are reportedly behind the attacks carried out by foreign-backed militants on military airbases and civilian airports in Syria

Citing a fugitive Syrian army officer, Palestinian Arabic website al-Manar said that attacks on airports had been planned by France and that the raids on airbases and air defense command posts are being carried out by militants under direct supervision of American military officers.

The officer went on to say on condition of anonymity that the American officers are training the militants in Turkey and Jordan to carry out such attacks.

Syria government sources, however, say the militants entered the base after government troops left it according to an army evacuation order a few days ago and that all important military equipment deployed there as well as officers, pilots and soldiers were evacuated before the arrival of militants.

It is believed that the Syrian army has left behind only useless military equipment and weapons.

An opposition watchdog also said that the Syrian military had removed all its helicopters from the base, except for 20 which were no longer in working condition.


January 13th, 2013, 9:52 pm


ann said:

Report: France Seeking to Smuggle Syria’s Ancient Artifacts – 2013-01-13

TEHRAN (FNA)- The French government has prepared a complicated plan to take advantage of unrests in Syria to loot the country’s unique antiques and mummies in collaboration with Syrian rebels and Turkey, local media reports disclosed on Sunday

According to a report by Arabi Press news website, based on the French plot, elements of the so called Free Syrian Army (FSA) smuggle the artifacts and mummies to Turkey under the excuse of protecting them and will then send them to France.

The Intelligence data shows that the FSA is involved in smuggling the invaluable mummies of Syria’s Tadmor region. The mummies are dated back to first century after A.D. and are unique because the method used for mummifying them is different from the ones used in the other parts of the world, including Egypt.

The report said that citizens in Syria, specially those residing in ancient regions, have asked for a special plan to protect mummies and archeological items.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011 with organized attacks by well-armed gangs against Syrian police forces and border guards being reported across the country.

The US and its western and regional allies have long sought to topple Assad and his ruling system. Media reports said that the Syrian rebels and terrorist groups have received significantly more and better weapons in recent weeks, a crime paid for by the Persian Gulf Arab states and coordinated by the United States.

UNESCO in December said that Syria’s archaeological heritage is disappearing piece by piece across its borders as smuggling of looted antiquities accelerates.

UNESCO has raised the alarm at the damage wrought to the world heritage sites, including ancient vaulted souk of Aleppo much of which were burnt in fierce fighting between armed rebels and forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad.


January 13th, 2013, 9:58 pm


revenire said:

The French are very dirty birds indeed.

January 13th, 2013, 10:05 pm


ann said:

France’s Le Pen says ‘blind West’ aiding Syrian war

France’s far-right leader Marine Le Pen (pictured) has given a television interview to a state-linked Syrian television channel, lambasting Western powers for “blindly supporting” the country’s 22-month uprising, it emerged on Tuesday.

Speaking of an “Islamist fundamentalist” takeover of the country, the far-right leader said from her office in Paris that the rebellion had been “in part aided by the blindness of Western countries”.

Le Pen said that Western powers were “doing in Syria exactly the same thing as they did in Libya, but secretly”. She said that by allegedly supporting Qatari and Saudi schemes to arm dissident militants in Syria, European leaders were “helping to fuel the civil war of which civilians are the first victims”.

‘Unforgivable’ Sharia

She also warned that the unenviable consequence of a successful revolution would be the implementation of Sharia law in Syria. “Sharia law aims to diminish the freedom of the individual and the people,” she said. “Instead of more rights, people – especially women – will have fewer rights.”

“Handing power to Islamist fundamentalists who impose Sharia law […] would be absolutely unforgivable,” she said.

Le Pen said she had denounced France’s intervention in Libya and was doing the same for Syria because she “defends the freedom, sovereignty and identity of all countries”.

She also condemned France’s “close links” to Saudi Arabia and Qatar. “Both the [ruling] Socialist Party and the [opposition] UMP offer these countries a veritable red carpet,” she said, adding that political representatives were “constantly travelling” to the two Gulf states.“Qatar has played a role in every negative consequence of the Arab Spring,” she said. “This is a situation that seems to me very dangerous”.

She also denounced Turkey for trying to “gain regional leadership” amid the Syrian crisis, but said its interests were not as clear-cut as those of Qatar and Saudi Arabia.


January 13th, 2013, 10:08 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:


“The only hope Syria has is for Assad to win”

Oh, you poor, deluded donkey. Be sure not to lose that chain locked on your ankle, you Assadist slave…

A New BAshar Cartoon

January 13th, 2013, 10:12 pm


ann said:

Report: Israel, France, UK Send Special Military Forces to Syria – 2013-01-13

Israeli, British and French special forces are in Syria to help militant and armed rebel groups take control of the Arab country’s military air bases, a former advisor of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat disclosed on Sunday

Bassam Abu Sharif quoted a western diplomat as saying that a team comprising Israeli, French, and British military experts had entered Syria several months ago after crossing the Turkish borders, the Lebanon-based al-Mayadeen website reported.

He noted that the main mission of the team is to help the terrorists to take control of Syria’s military airports and steal the technology of the Russian missiles and weapons they find in these military airports.

The al-Mayadeen’s report came while the armed rebels have failed in recent weeks to gain control over the military airports across Syria despite their large-scale efforts.

Terrorists have tried hard in the last few weeks to make Syrian cities unsafe, specially for citizens, but the army has purged them from most neighborhoods and districts, killed hundreds of them and arrested many more.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since March 2011 with organized attacks by well-armed gangs against Syrian police forces and border guards being reported across the country.

Hundreds of people, including members of the security forces, have been killed, when some protest rallies turned into armed clashes.

The government blames outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorist groups for the deaths, stressing that the unrest is being orchestrated from abroad.

In October 2011, calm was eventually restored in the Arab state after President Assad started a reform initiative in the country, but Israel, the US and its Arab allies are seeking hard to bring the country into chaos through any possible means. Tel Aviv, Washington and some Arab capitals have been staging various plots in the hope of increasing unrests in Syria.

The US daily, Washington Post, reported in May that the Syrian rebels and terrorist groups battling the President Bashar al-Assad’s government have received significantly more and better weapons in recent weeks, a crime paid for by the Persian Gulf Arab states and coordinated by the United States.

The newspaper, quoting opposition activists and US and foreign officials, reported that Obama administration officials emphasized the administration has expanded contacts with opposition military forces to provide the Persian Gulf nations with assessments of rebel credibility and command-and-control infrastructure.

According to the report, material is being stockpiled in Damascus, in Idlib near the Turkish border and in Zabadani on the Lebanese border.


January 13th, 2013, 10:15 pm


Syria no Kandahar said:

Jabhat Alnasra=jamhoriat Aliraq Alislamiah=Alqaeda=The striking power of FSA
Hence SAA is fighting The Global Alqaeda terrorist movement , The same mission which US and coalition tried to do in Iraq:

January 13th, 2013, 10:45 pm


Syrian said:

2 Alawaits high ranking officers who have been captured 3 months ago by the FSA are in this video talking how the regime refused to exchanged them for 50 civilian and also they are addressing Bashar directly about their situation

January 13th, 2013, 10:48 pm


ann said:

Syrian troops kill scores of rebels, parliament works for national dialogue – 2013-01-14

• Syrian media said Sunday scores of armed rebels were killed during clashes with army troops.
• Parliament were working to prepare for a national dialogue among all spectra of Syrian people.
• Arabi said Sunday Security Council should dispatch peacekeeping forces to protect the Syrians.

DAMASCUS, Jan. 13 (Xinhua) — Syrian media said Sunday that scores of armed rebels were killed nationwide during clashes with army troops, as the Syrian parliament were working to prepare for a national dialogue among all spectra of the Syrian people.

The Syrian army continued operations in several suburbs of the capital Damascus Sunday, killing 18 rebels in Douma and another 12 in Harasta, the pro-government Sham FM reported.

The radio said the army has called on residents in the surrounding of the Yarmouk camp for Palestinian refugees to evacuate their homes due to the intensity of clashes between local committee and armed rebels inside the camp.

Separately, army troops killed as many as 60 rebels in the countryside of the northern Aleppo province, the report said, adding that those rebels were killed while trying to storm a cotton factory.

In the northwestern province of Idlib, Sham FM said, 15 militants were killed in the Binish town as the Syrian air force targeted armed groups’ gatherings at the Taftanas airbase, which has recently been stormed by rebels and radical militants.

On the opposition side, the Local Coordination Committees (LCC) reported shelling by army troops on several hotspots nationwide as well as intense clashes with the rebels’ Free Syrian Army.

Meanwhile, Chairman of the National Reconciliation Committee at the People’s Assembly Omar Aussi stressed that the committee will work on getting engaged into in the political process and effectively contributing to make successful the implementation of the political program outlined by President Bashar al-Assad to solve the crisis.

In a press conference held Sunday, Aussi said the newly- established and democratically-elected committee will take part in all the ongoing preparations to hold the comprehensive national dialogue, considering it as a safe and the only way out of the crisis.

“We will work on spreading and consolidating the culture of citizenship and coexistence among the various spectra of the Syrian society with all its constituents,” he said.

Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halqi also issued Sunday a decision to form a ministerial committee to make intensive contacts with all the political forces and civil society bodies to start directly open dialogue sessions in preparation for holding the comprehensive national dialogue conference.

The Syrian parliament also stressed that it will work to unify its members’ efforts, including the national reconciliation committee, which was formed by the assembly, and through all available means to make the political program set by Assad a success.

In a statement issued Sunday, the parliament said it will activate the political move and dialogue among all spectra of the Syrian people and political and intellectual parties. It vowed to mobilize the Syrians to be engaged in the national dialogue, so as to foil the attack targeting Syria and draw its political future in the framework of pluralism, democracy and protection of human rights.

Assad has recently said embarking on a political solution does not mean to stop countering terrorism. The Syrian administration labels the rebels as “terrorists”.


January 13th, 2013, 10:49 pm


Syria no Kandahar said:

Some historical politicians (like Ronal Regan) were actors, And as a (Tashakorat
Afandam) to their Turkish masters, Mofaz Akateeb,George Sabra and the criminal
Farook Taifur will be starring as Hareem in the new show:Hareem Alwali.

January 13th, 2013, 10:51 pm


AJ said:

Menhebakjiyi are so desperate to look for an ounce of legitimacy that they don’t realize that Marine Lepen is an anti-arab, pro-zionist islamophobe.

January 13th, 2013, 10:58 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:


“Israel, France, UK Send Special Military Forces to Syria”

Ann, you worthless acid-sucking illiterate turd! Don’t ever post that brain-damaged Iranian swill in here again. If I had the time, I’d come out there and drive a fucking wooden stake through your ugly head. Why don’t you get a real job, loser?

A New Bashar Cartoon:

January 13th, 2013, 10:58 pm


Syrian said:

Switzerland Leads Effort to Refer Syria to ICC
“More than 50 countries, led by Switzerland, will ask the United Nations Security Council Monday to refer Syria to the International Criminal Court, a move that would pave the way for war crimes prosecutions.”
“The violence continued Sunday as Syrian fighter jets bombed the Damascus suburbs, killing at least nine people, including a number of children, in a government offensive to dislodge rebels from strategic areas around the capital”

January 13th, 2013, 11:08 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

Syria And Iraq: A Five State Solution?
The problem is: Syria will have no coast,,,its population will be over 30 million, and Deraa is not Druze country, The Druze area can not survive there is no economy to support such state,they will rejoin Syria. there will be water supply problem, where Iraq sunni after they join Syria will divert all the tigris and euphrate river water and keep the south dry,and there will be constant war between Sunni and the Alawi state,HA will be isolated from Iran

January 13th, 2013, 11:13 pm


revenire said:

JOHANNES DE SILENTIO you’re very brave behind a keyboard. Interesting.

January 13th, 2013, 11:20 pm


revenire said:

JOHANNES DE SILENTIO are you the Saudi psychologist who diagnosed Assad with a personality disorder?

“Al Arabiya English ‏@AlArabiya_Eng
#Syria #Assad suffering from personality disorder: psychologist

You seem like a doctor.

January 13th, 2013, 11:29 pm


Syrain said:

Unmatched bravery from Darayyans,an AK 47 disabling the machin gun of a T72 tank

January 13th, 2013, 11:32 pm


Ghufran said:

From Al-mundassah:
نداء وطلب موجه إلى جميع الثور المسلحين جيش حر أو غيره
رجاءاً ثم رجاءاً ثم رجاءاً أن لا تحكموا على منطقة بسبب ولائها للنظام وتسميتها بالمناطق التشبيحية
وهنا أضرب مثال عن دمشق:
عش الورور – مزة 86 – حي تشرين – ضاحية الأسد – مشروع دمر – جرمانا
فهي مناطق باتت الآن تحوي وتؤي الكثير من النازحين من أبناء الريف الشرقي والغربي
وأرجوكم أن لا تحكموا بالأعدام على المنطقة من خلال رصاصكم المنهمر عليها وقذائف الهاون بسبب تشبيح بعض ساكنيها أو سكوتهم عن نظام الحكم
وكلنا يذكر ماحصل ب مزة 86 من انفجارات وقذائف هاون
ومن فترة أسبوعين سقطت قذائف هاون على ضاحية الأسد من جهة دوما, وقد سقطت القذائف على احد المساجد وعلى المدنيين
ولن ننسى تفجيرات جرمانا
ولن نكذب بعضنا ونقول انها كلها من قبل النظام, ولنكن واقعيين بعض الشيء
نرجوكم أن تتركوا هذه المناطق على الحياد وأن تجنبوها ويلات الحرب
كلنا يؤمن أن النظام أجرم بحق أهلنا في أرياف دمشق, ولكن هذا لا يعطينا المبرر لكي نتحول لمجرمين مثل النظام وأن نؤذي أبنائنا الموجودين واللاجئين إلى مناطق مؤيدة
ولتذكرو أيها الثوار أن فيدل كاسترو كان ثائر وأدولف هتلر كان ثائر ومعمر القذافي كان ثائر وعمر حسن البشير وحافظ أسد وصدام حسين جاءوا على ظهر ثورات, وكلهم تحولوا لمجرمين وديكتاتوريين فلا تكونوا منهم أو مثلهم
على فكرة النظام عنده ثكنات عسكرية وفروع أمنية أكثر من المناطق التشبيحية ب 100 ضعف, أرونا قوتكم فيهم كي نصفق وندعي لكم لا عليكم
وشكرا لكم
نرجو منكم ايصال طلبنا لمن يهمه الأمر


January 13th, 2013, 11:45 pm


MarigoldRan said:

Revenire, are you a

Oh, but I don’t need to say it. At this point your imagination should be able to fill in the blanks.

January 13th, 2013, 11:45 pm


Visitor said:

Tafanaz is totally destroyed by the criminal thugs of the Assad regime.

The determination of the FSA and in particular one Taftanaz family in the face of the thugs is legendary. Anyone who has doubts about the extent to which this war will reach must think again after watching the video. Those cities, and particularly Damascus, whose inhabitants think they can ride the destruction by waiting out the war, avoid the inevitable and not actively join the FSA and fight the criminals are only shooting themselves in the foot.

Rise up now and do what needs to be done no matter the cost. It will be much higher if you procrastinate.

January 13th, 2013, 11:55 pm


Roland said:

@ #2,

While the Western Bloc’s recent batch of leaders are almost all cowardly, both in the physical and moral sense, and while it is true that they enjoy waging war against distant, impoverished enemies who can’t shoot back, nevertheless it is silly to make generalizations about the French.

What is cowardly about the French leaders of today is no less true of all the rest of the Western Bloc leaders. Nowadays, these neoliberal paragons are all cut from the same cloth. Never have such wealthy and powerful states, with so much wide-ranging potential to wage war, been governed by men and women so badly lacking in courage and integrity.

In a way, the author of that article in Pravda resembles today’s Western leaders in that he has little idea of what war means, or of what is demanded from those who find themselves involved in war. Like today’s Western leaders, the author of that article takes cheap shots, while exhibiting complete ignorance of the topic.

Nobody in 1812 would have so gratuitously or so fatuously insulted their French enemies. They would have known better, from hard experience.

Ask the ghosts of all those Germans who fell at Verdun or at Soissons how easy it was to fight against the French.

As for the debacle of 1940, it is worth noting that all of the Allied powers took a severe beating in the early campaigns. But the British had a convenient body of water across which to flee, after their army was beaten in 1940. The Russians had a country so big that in 1941 they could keep running away until the Germans ran out of fuel. The French were not so well favoured by geography. When their army lost a big battle, there was no vast expanse, nor any convenient body of water. This was a matter of what is called, “strategic depth.” France didn’t have it, but their allies did–and thank God for that. But nobody in the UK, USA, or former USSR has any business insulting the French.

January 14th, 2013, 12:04 am


Ghufran said:

Many in Lebanon are worried that Syrian refugees may try to stay:
دعا البطريرك الماروني الكاردينال مار بشارة بطرس الراعي الجميع للصلاة من أجل إحلال السلام في سورية والمنطقة مشددا على اتخاذ التدابير الوقائية اللازمة لكي لا تصبح استضافة النازحين السوريين قنبلة موقوتة أمنيا وسياسيا واجتماعيا واقتصاديا.
واعتبر البطريرك الراعي خلال عظة قداس الأحد أن المسؤولية الأخلاقية في قضية النازحين السوريين تقع على كل الذين يغذون العنف على سورية من الداخل والخارج داعيا إلى وضع حد للعنف وايجاد الحلول السلمية للأزمة.

January 14th, 2013, 12:10 am


Roland said:

@ #21

One ought to treat with the utmost scepticism any testimony from PoW’s which could be construed as favourable to their captors. PoW’s are too vulnerable, to too many different kinds of pressure, for any of their statements made while in captivity to be of much value.

January 14th, 2013, 12:21 am


William Scott Scherk said:

Je trouve très difficile à comprendre le but de citer ce personnage Jacob Wolinsky au sujet de Syrie. De quelle endroit M. Wolinsky avait achevé son baccalauréat des études moyen-orient, on est incertain. Néanmoins …

Suffirait à citer un autre article de la plume de Wolinsky:

[Wolinsky: Founder and CEO of (the “Site”) is a web site owned by VALUEWALK LLC, a New Jersey limited liability corporation. I am the former VP of business Development of SumZero, LLC, the world’s largest community I have prior experience in a value based pe firm focused on PIPE transactions in micro-cap companies, and at a value based research firm, which focused on smid caps. In my personal portfolio I have outperformed the market by a cumulative ~24% from 3/2008 (inception date) through December 31st 2011. I also do marketing/business development/PR on an ad-hoc basis for asset managers.]

Euh …

Il y a aussi cet article au sujet de “Les douze biases cognitif qui préviennent les gens à devenir rationel” …

[Cet article-ci de M. Wolinsky cite un autre site — du M. George Dvorsky — qui collationne des informations en suivant d’un page au Wikipédia. Liens non-ajoutés]


12 Cognitive Biases That Prevent People From Being Rational

We thought this article was very interesting and informative. This category should really be labelled value investing and behavioral finance, but if anyone did not know now they do! The two topics are connected so having them in the same category is logical (IMHO). Below is a brief excerpt, the full article can be found here.

Before we start, it’s important to distinguish between cognitive biases and logical fallacies. A logical fallacy is an error in logical argumentation (e.g. ad hominem attacks, slippery slopes, circular arguments, appeal to force, etc.). A cognitive bias, on the other hand, is a genuine deficiency or limitation in our thinking — a flaw in judgment that arises from errors of memory, social attribution, and miscalculations (such as statistical errors or a false sense of probability)

(les astuces parmis nous autres pourraient devenir que ce M. Walisky est un peu confus, comme en témoigne sa faible maîtrise de la langue anglaise. Viz paragraphe 3, “We leave in a cruel world, I look at things as a realist and not as an idealist. That said, I do not think we should arm the Alawites and try to cause more death, but rather try to put that forth as a point to scare the opposition into compromise.“)


En avant!

Les douze distorsions cognitives:

Some social psychologists believe our cognitive biases help us process information more efficiently, especially in dangerous situations. Still, they lead us to make grave mistakes. We may be prone to such errors in judgment, but at least we can be aware of them. Here are some important ones to keep in mind.

Confirmation Bias
Ingroup Bias
Gambler’s Fallacy
Post-Purchase Rationalization
Neglecting Probability
Observational Selection Bias
Status-Quo Bias
Negativity Bias
Bandwagon Effect
Projection Bias
The Current Moment Bias
Anchoring Effect

Yes, we leave in a cruel world, Mr Walinsky. We do indeed. A world so cruel that it puts forth your views on Syria as informed and rational, a world so cruel that you pay no attention to your own wise words, a world without spellcheck.

As the demented and enraged engage in comprehensive dialogue here in comments, we will see these twelve cognitive biases swamp the commentary, as each ‘side,’ blindfolded, accuses the other ‘side’ of an inability to see …

January 14th, 2013, 12:44 am


William Scott Scherk said:

From the We are All Partners site (

د.سمير هاجم : كلنا شركاء

أصدر المجلس الوطني رؤيته لحل الازمة السورية منذ ما يزيد عن العشرة ايام, ولكن هذه المبادرة لم يكن لها تفسيرات واضحة مما جعلها حبيسة الادراج طيلة المدة السابقة، حتى اعتقد المجلس الوطني ان اغفال هذه المبادرة جاء من باب التنافس السياسي, او من باب قلة وعي الآخرين بالظروف و قلة الخبرة السياسية فكان الاجراء بأن تم اطلاق سراح المبادرة عبر وسائل الاعلام بالطريقة التي تمت بالأمس القريب.

تتكون المبادرة / الرؤية من تسعة بنود يلتف بعضها على بعض وفيما يلي نص المبادرة و التعليق عليها:


يسمي الائتلاف الوطني لقوى الثورة والمعارضة حكومة مؤقتة، عند توفر ضمانات دولية بالاعتراف بها، وتوفير صندوق لدعم نشاطاتها.

انتهى الاقتباس

من المفروض أن يكون تشكيل الحكومة ضرورة استراتيجية ملحة خلقتها ظروف تحتم قيامها في اي ظرف تتبلور فيه مستلزمات نشوئها وليس ربط انشاء الحكومة بالحصول على ضمانات دولية بالاعتراف بها بداية, و من ثم توفير الدعم المالي من خلال صندوق يخصص لتغطية نشاطاتها.

السؤال هنا، ماذا لو لم تتوفر هذه الضمانات الدولية بالاعتراف بهذه ؟ الحكومة؟ و ماذا لو لم يتم توفير هذا الصندوق لدعم نشاطات الحكومة – و هو ماسيحث حقيقة في حال تشكلت الحكومة المؤقتة اليوم.

و الواقع الملموس في الحالة السورية يقول بأن قضية الضمانات و الاعترافات فقدت معناها و خصوصا بعد تشكيل الإئتلاف الوطني الذي توفرت له “ضمانات” بالاعتراف الدولي، و الدعم المالي اللامحدود. وفعلا تم الحصول على الاعتراف الدولي و لكنه اعتراف اجوف لا معنى له في ظل تخاذل الدول التي قدمت اعترافها عن اتمام دورها في الدعم على كافة الاصعدة، وهذا لا يمكن لأحد انكاره. فهل المطلوب من الشعب السوري ان يبدل جلده كلما اعتقد مجرد اعتقاد ان ذلك مفيد؟ أو كلما لمعت فكرة في ذهن مهتم دولي ، أو عربي، أو محلي؟


تنحية بشار الأسد ورموز النظام رضوخا لمطالب الشعب السوري.

انتهى الاقتباس

يعرض البند الثاني لقضية تنحي بشار الاسد عن السلطة و كأن تنحيته تتم ب “كبسة زر” او ان هنالك من سيأمره بالتنحي فيتنحى كرما لعيون مبادرة المجلس الوطني. إن مبادرةً تخرج من رحم الشعب السوري الثائر، أو هكذا يفترض بها، يجب ان تحدد تماما كيفية تنحية المجرم الذي قتل ابناء الشعب السوري بشكل واضح لا أن ترمي الكلام عن التنحية جزافا بطريقة “صف الحكي” و السلام.

كل ذلك في كفة و تعبير” رضوخاً لمطالب الشعب السوري” في كفة أخرى. فهذا التعبير هنا و بهذه الطريقة يحتمل التأويلات التالية:

أولا – أن من تقدم في المبادرة منفصلٌ عن الشعب السوري باعتبار أنه لا يريد تنحية بشار و رموز نظامه بالأصل، و انما يعرض لطلبات الشعب السوري – على مضض – كونه طرفا ثالثاً، أي ان لدينا: الشعب السوري ، و النظام الاسدي الارهابي و المجلس الوطني. وهذا الامر يعيدنا للسؤال :”من هو المجلس الوطني؟”

ثانيا – أن المجلس الوطني لم يكن يفكر بتنحية بشار الاسد و رموز نظامه ولكنه “رضوخاً” لمطالب الشعب السوري قرر التنازل عن خطه والرضوخ لمطالب الشعب السوري بتنحية بشار الاسد ورموز نظامه.

ثالثا – يُفهم ايضا من تعبير”رضوخا للشعب السوري” ان المجلس الوطني يرسل اشارات للعالم بأن لديه خططا أخرى و خلاقة تتناغم مع عدم تنحية بشار الاسد و ان المجتمع الدولي يجب عليه ان يدفع ثمن رضوخ المجلس الوطني لضغط الشارع الثائر و الذي يطلب قلع الاسد و نظامه من جذوره بإعطاء مزيد من التنازلات المهمة.


يتولى الائتلاف الوطني السلطة التشريعية و التنفيذية، ويصدر مراسيم بإقالة حكومة النظام، وحل مجلس الشعب، والأجهزة الأمنية، باستثناء جهاز الشرطة، وإقالة القيادات العليا للجيش وحل فرقته الرابعة، إضافة لحل الحرس الجمهوري، وإطلاق سراح جميع المعتقلين السياسيين ومعتقلي الثورة.

انتهى الاقتباس

اصدار المراسيم يتم في حق من هو شرعي و ليس في حق العصابات “الاسدية في هذه الحالة” هذا بداية، و من ثم من قال اننا نريد “حل” الاجهزة الامنية و الفرقة الرابعة و غيرها؟ المطلوب هو محاكمة الاجهزة الامنية وكل اجهزة بشار المتبقية أو التحفظ على حركتهم أو ايجاد طريقة ما لوضعهم في تحت الانظار تمهيدا لمحاكمتهم و محاكمة كل من ساهم في قتل الشعب السوري وذلك حفاظا على حياتهم أولاً و من ثم حفاظا على الامن و الاستقرار السوري، لان الشعب السوري المسلح لن ينتظر حتى تضع الحرب اوزارها حتى يقاضي من قتله.


يصدر الائتلاف الوطني مرسوماً يقضي بنقل السلطات التنفيذية إلى الحكومة المؤقتة.

انتهى الاقتباس

يبدو ان من كتب المبادرة نسي ان البند الاول كان تشكيل حكومة مؤقتة، و المفروض ان تكون تلك الحكومة الجهاز التنفيذي و إلا ما معنى وجود ما يسمى “حكومة” إذا لم تقم بتنفيذ تشريعات الدولة. ولكن هذا البند من المبادرة يشير تماما الى ان تشكيل الحكومة في البند الاول كان عبارة عن اجراء شكلي لا يتعدى كونه خطوة تم توثيقها بطريقة تحبيرها على ورق.


يعطل الائتلاف الوطني العمل بالدستو رالحالي، و يسير المرحلة بمراسيم تشريعية.

انتهى الاقتباس

ربما قد نتفهم مثل هذه الاجراءات علما انها مازالت خلافية.


تشرف الحكومة المؤقتة على اتفاق بين قادة الجيش الحر وهيأة الأركان المشتركة، وضباط الجيش السوري ممن لم تتلطخ أيديهم بدماء السوريين، وتنظيم عمليات وقف اطلاق النار، وسحب الجيش إلى ثكناته، واستيعاب الثوار في صفوف الجيش والقوى الأمنية، وضبط الأمن، وتحقيق السلم الأهلي.

انتهى الاقتباس

هذا البند يؤكد – او يعترف – بان المعارضة السورية السياسية منفصلة عن واقع الجيش السوري الحر. فالمطلوب من الحكومة المؤقتة والذي يبدو انها بلا وزير دفاع او بوزير دفاع ولكن بدون جيش، أو بلا صلاحيات ان تقوم بمساعي للتوفيق بين قادة الجيش الحر الذين لم ينضووا تحت هيئة الاركان المشتركة أولا، أي اجراء اتفاق بيني، ومن ثم تقوم بانتقاء الضباط و العناصر من الجيش الاسدي والذين لم تتلطخ ايديهم بدماء الشعب السوري للتوفيق فيما بينهم لإنشاء جيش سوري وطني…. وكل هذا يتم انجازه في فترة شهر من الزمن علما ان محاولات توحيد الفصائل المسلحة للجيش الحر لم تثمر حتى هذه اللحظة.


يدعو الائتلاف الوطني لعقد مؤتمر وطني عام، يدعى إليه ممثلو جميع القوى السياسية ومكونات الثورة دون استثناء، خلال مدة أقصاها شهر واحد من تاريخ إسقاط النظام.

انتهى الاقتباس

إن عقد مؤتمر وطني عام يعني ان الاطراف السورية بعد سقوط النظام وخلال شهر صارت جاهزة للجلوس و التباحث حول ادارة الدولة و انهم اقرب بمليون مرة الى الاتفاق من قربهم للفشل. و هذا لعمري مع تمنياتي الشخصية بحدوثه هي احلام وردية لا تبتعد عن كونها مجرد اضغاث احلام حتى. فالامثلة حولنا كثيرة الا اذا قلنا قولة المستبدين بأن “سوريا غير”.


ينحل الائتلاف الوطني بعد انعقاد المؤتمر الوطني العام، وتشكيل الحكومة الانتقالية.

انتهى الاقتباس

لقد تشكل المجلس الوطني بإتلاف قوى من اقصى اليمين لأقصى اليسار، وجاء بعده الائتلاف الوطني لقوى الثورة و المعارضة السورية ككيان جامع و اكبر و بقي المجلس الوطني بالرغم من انه “سَلَطة مكونات” ولم يحل نفسه، واعترفت الدنيا بالإئتلاف و مازال المجلس الوطني يعتبر نفسه الخطة “ب” و ربما ما زال يقدم نفسه على انه “الخيار” الصحيح وان اختراع تنظيمات اخرى – كالائتلاف الوطني – كان مجرد عملاً عبثياً.


يطلق المؤتمر الوطني العام عملية المحاسبة عن جرائم المرحلة السابقة، ويشكل هيأة لكشف الحقيقة، وتحقيق العدالة والمصالحة الوطنية.

انتهى الاقتباس

وفق هذه المبادرة: سيأتي دور محاسبة من اقترف الجرائم بعد خلو سوريا ممن سوف تطبق عليه المحاسبة ، أي بعد ان يكون ” اللي ضرب، ضرب ؛ و اللي هرب، هرب.” اما تعبير “تحقيق المصالحة الوطنية” فهذا اعتراف صريح يعبر عن فكر المجلس الوطني بأن لدى السوريين مشكلة فيما بينهم وليس كون المشكلة بين السوريين والنظام فقط .

الحقيقة لا ارى ان هنالك داع لاستخدام هذا تعبير “المصالحة الوطنية” لانه بالاصل لا يوجد خلاف بين مكونات الشعب السوري حتى يكون هنالك مصالحة ، فطالما قال الشعب السوري انه لدينا مجموعتين لا ثالث لهما : الشعب السوري و النظام الاسدي فقط لا غير، وان الخلاف بينهما، وأنه سيكون هنالك محاسبة لمن ولغ بدماء الشعب السوري و ليس مصالحة.


هذه المبادرة لا معنى لها سوى انها تقدم المجلس الوطني بديلا عن الائتلاف الوطني و هي ترسل اشارات لدول العالم التي صار لها القول الفصل في الشأن السوري بإمكانية التفاوض حول كل شيء كما يظهر البند الثاني من هذه المبادرة العتيدة. إذا هي تلتقي مع مبادرة بشار الاسد الاخيرة من ناحية استحالة التنفيذ.

ولأن هذه المبادرة على ما يبدو لم تنل قبول السوريين غير اعضاء المجلس الوطني حتى هذه أللحظة، فمن المنطقي ان يقوم المجلس الوطني بحل نفسه كإجراء ديمقراطي متبع في اي دولة في العالم الديمقراطي عندما يثبت فشل جهة في تقديم مشاريع وطنية مفيدة المرة تلو المرة. فقد فشل المجلس الوطني في الاستجابة لتطلعات الشعب السوري، و كاد ان يفنى لولا علبة السبانخ التي رزقته اياها احدى الدول الراعية و تم حشره في الائتلاف ألوطني وجاء اليوم معتقداً انه “سيكحلها” بتقدم خطة تحمل عناصر فشلها “فعماها” مما يؤكد عدم جدوى وجود هذا الكيان اصلاً.

لك الله يا شعب سوريا

January 14th, 2013, 12:52 am


William Scott Scherk said:

The folks at report on a social media campaign to name-and-shame those traitor relatives of the government and ruling classes who have sent their ‘vulnerable’ members abroad.

The irony is thick, as thick as the roof and walls of the hillside bunker from where the Syrian war effort will shortly be conducted (Wikimapia note and coordinates)…

أنشأ ناشطون سوريون على مواقع التواصل الاجتماعي صفحة بعنوان “سورية ليست فندقاً”، قال مُنشؤوها أن الغاية منها هي “فضح أولاد وأقارب المسؤولين الهاربين خارج سورية”.

القائمون على الصفحة اتهموا كثيراً ممن غادر سورية في العام الماضي بالتخاذل وكتبوا على صفحتهم أنها موجهة: الى كل من تخاذل وهرب الي دبي وبيروت والقاهرة وغيرها من العواصم العالمية وترك أهله وترك سورية والسوريين.. التجار والصناعيين والمسؤولين السابقين وجما.
وجاء فيها أيضاً: “هؤلاء هم من كان رمزاً للفساد في الدولة ومنهم التجار المقربين من الدولة والمحظوظين قبل الأزمة بكل صفقات الدولة … وهم الطرف الآخر من الفساد والخراب”.

ووضع أحد المشرفين على الصفحة طلباً جاء فيه: “هل تعيش في بيروت او في دبي أو غيرها من العواصم ولديك معلومات لأحد المتخاذلين والفارين من سورية؟، راسل الصفحة بالتفاصيل حتى يتم النشر فوراً”.
وجاء على تلك الصفحة أيضاً تحذير مفاده بأن “الصفحة ستبدأ بذكر اسماء أولاد وعائلات المسؤولين السوريين الهاربين من البلد… وبالأخص من هو بالمنصب اليوم سواء في حزب أو حكومة”.

وتقول أرقام غير رسمية أن مئات رجال الأعمال السوريين غادروا مع أسرهم وأموالهم إلى عواصم عربية وغربية أبرزها دبي وبيروت والقاهرة واسطنبول وباريس ولندن، كما غادر البلاد موظفون ومسؤولون كبار كان سابقاً في مواقع مهمة إضافة للكثير من الفنانين والمقربين من أجهزة الدولة في السنوات الماضية، ويتهم الناشطون من مؤيدين ومعارضين هؤلاء بأنهم كان أصدقاء النظام وأجهزته الأمنية والعسكرية خلال فترة قوة النظام وبأسه واستفادوا من هبات النظام من منازل وسيارات وصفقات تجارية وتسهيلات يومية في كل المجالات، وتخلوا عن النظام بعد أسابيع قليلة من اندلاع الأزمة وانتقلوا مع أموالهم إلى خارج البلاد.

ويعيش ملايين السوريين أوضاعاً معيشية واقتصادية صعبة للغاية مع فقدان آلاف السكان فرع عملهم في الشركات الخاصة وفي كثير من المهن الحرة التي توقفت، وحتى أعمال الزراعة تراجعت كثيراً على وقع الأوضاع الأمنية المتردية والاشتباكات المسلحة التي تنشط في مناطق الأرياف في أغلب المحافظات.

وتوقفت كثير من المصانع كما أغلقت الكثير من الشركات أبوابها واستغنى قسم من رجال الأعمال عن كثير من موظفيهم في الشركات والمؤسسات الخاصية التي بقيت تعمل.

كامل صقر – القدس العربي

[original story cited above, via

January 14th, 2013, 1:05 am


William Scott Scherk said:

Website of the Turkish relief organization IHH, which was the intermediary between the Syrian Government, and those forces holding the retired Revolutionary Guards taken from their pilgrimage to the Bunker of Al-Bab Assad:

Unfortunately, in Turkish, but it has their self-congratulations on the effort front and centre (except for a pop-up asking for bread and blankets).

Still not one word on SANA or affiliates about the swap. The backlog of articles must be massive …

It is almost as if the Syrian government is a little bit embarrassed about the swap, and so is pretending that it did not happen.

SANA watchers know that the government organs have trumpetted earlier releases of ‘no blood on hands’ cut-outs, with photos, interviews (cough) and feverish self-congratulation on the peace moves.

Sidelined since two weeks has been the Deputy Prime Minister Haider — who is also Reconciliation Minister. Not one word.

January 14th, 2013, 1:25 am


revenire said:

Thank God we have Johnny Rotten to show us the way – above us all as usual Bill.


January 14th, 2013, 1:34 am


Hassan said:

This is for Ghufran who called me a mole, all I have to say is sir, I respect you a lot and know that you support us, support the Party and the President, I repsect you and salute patriotic citizens like you, it is very unfortunate that you couldn’t recognize me as your fellow patriot-comrade and called me a mole, why don’t you accept that there are many Alawites who are frustrated with the situation and do not want to live alongside Sunnites anymore ? I entirely blame Sunnites for Syria’s situation. Also, as a veteran I know what I’m saying when I’m talking about Sunni conscripts, a good [portion of them are good-for-nothing.

There is an Alawite awakening currently now in the coast in which we are rediscovering our pride and greatness. WE are coastal mountain fighters and we are certainly superior to the rest of “Syrians”. We are descendants of Greeks and Romans, they are low class Arab and Turkish swine.

January 14th, 2013, 1:36 am


revenire said:

Bill during World War II the same thing happened to collaborators of the Nazis in many countries. Relatives of traitors SHOULD be exposed and forced out of Syria. They need to be arrested and it should be ascertained whether they helped the terrorists and if so jailed and their property given to families displaced by the terrorists.

January 14th, 2013, 1:38 am


revenire said:

Again who is the kid Jacob Wolinsky ‏and how did he get to be an expert on Syria? Shows just how out of touch some are (cough, cough).

January 14th, 2013, 1:41 am


Juergen said:


He got his expertice just like you.


Without the french there would be not much left of Syrias antiquities, they have set up the system which even this regime has used for decades, btw the biggest seller of syrian antiquities was the regime itself. You should ask some galleries in New York where they got their Palmyraheads from.

January 14th, 2013, 1:50 am


Juergen said:

A Berlin freelance photographer has made these pictures

in Syria

January 14th, 2013, 2:14 am


MarigoldRan said:

Revenire’s retarding it up again.

Hassan is his account. Revenire has multiple accounts to troll people on the comments section of a blog.

That’s kind of sad.

Revenire, if you’re going to make a new account, at least have the creativity to try to sound like a different person. Your tactics are retard-obvious, kind of like the tactics of the regime you profess to support.

January 14th, 2013, 2:37 am


Hanzala said:

Nice map, great idea on the Druze state BTW, including Daraa into it. Even though the people of Daraa outnumber the Druze and are entirely Sunni. Who comes up with these things?

January 14th, 2013, 2:47 am


MarigoldRan said:

@ Revenire

Don’t ever throw out the word “sir” when you’re trying to troll someone. It makes it obvious you’re trolling. You’ve effectively shown that you copied your trolling style from a million other college students who think they’re being unique.

Unfortunately, you’re just another dumb twit who thinks he’s smart. But that’s because you’re too dumb to realize how dumb you are and how dumb you sound.

January 14th, 2013, 2:49 am


Juergen said:

looks like Putin is receiving his payback…

French actor Depardieu sides with Putin, criticizes opposition

about Putin:
“I like this man very much, he is a very powerful political activist. He has political wisdom,” the 63-year-old star of “Cyrano de Bergerac” and “Green Card” said in comments aired late on Sunday, according to the channel’s Russian translation.°

on the opposition:

“The Russian opposition has no program, nothing. There are very smart people there, like (former world chess champion Garry) Kasparov, but what works well for chess is completely unsuited to politics,” Depardieu said.”

January 14th, 2013, 3:23 am


Citizen said:

Gun battle in Turkey between suspect PKK members and Turkish special forces. peace talks going well:

As Kurds Fight for Freedom in Syria, Fears Rise in Turkey

January 14th, 2013, 3:27 am


revenire said:

Hassan is not me but you keep going on being paranoid. It amuses us.

January 14th, 2013, 3:29 am


habib said:

“Of course, Assad is responsible for this by not offering to step aside and setting in place a process for a smooth transfer of power.”

Lol. So just about anyone would automatically become a thief if they had to fight against Assad? These excuses are extraordinary, and the fact that they are republished even more so.

There is a thing called moral high ground. Without it, there’s no difference between the factions, and none will be worthy of support, from an objective POV.

January 14th, 2013, 3:31 am


revenire said:

Assad is the one person NOT responsible for any of it.

January 14th, 2013, 3:39 am


Badr said:

Syria Talks End With No Breakthrough

Regime still strong
But analyst Peter Harling of the International Crisis Group said the Assad regime still has significant assets, including firepower and strategic tactical positions, which will make any rebel advance long and painful. “It’s quite obvious that the regime is being forced into a fighting retreat, but it remains a more potent enemy than the opposition or commentators abroad want to make of it,” he said. “The regime has massive military assets in Damascus, is in control of a large and defensible area on the heights above the capital and also has significant social bases in that part of the country.”

Harling said that rebel forces have “failed to completely uproot the regime” from northern strongholds and he predicts the battle for the capital will be a “challenge” in the months to come.

January 14th, 2013, 3:54 am


Syria no Kandahar said:

الشرطة العسكريه الثوريه
Great achievement for this wahabi criminal revolution : catched Alarak truck !!!
Way to go Syria with this F..king revolution : deprived syrians of heat,bread,schools,freedom,
Roads,planes,buses,medicines,hospitals and even
Arak.F..k you ,your ibn Temiah , your Aroor , your
Karadawi , your Alkateb , your wali Yalmaz , your
Wahabi wathani criminal devlution:

January 14th, 2013, 6:57 am


Tara said:

An idiot concept -test

January 14th, 2013, 7:25 am



Syria was an illusion, in reality it’s Assadistan.

Assad terrorists at work:

January 14th, 2013, 7:58 am


zoo said:

#54 Habib

I agree with you, it’s a schoolboy reaction: “He did it”

January 14th, 2013, 8:15 am


zoo said:

#29 Revenire

ref Silentio

“You seem like a doctor.”

I would think he is a veterinary specialized in castrating donkeys.
Donkeys are his obsession.

January 14th, 2013, 8:23 am


zoo said:

The promises of the rebels to Syrians: Dignity and pride?

“About 70 percent of Syrian refugees are living not in camps but dispersed in cities and towns, the report said, arguing that these “urban refugees” are “grossly underserved” because they are hard to locate and track. Desperate families end up without money for food, rent or medical care, leading women to join the sex trade and parents to sell daughters for early marriage or place children in exploitative jobs, the report said.

The report also emphasized a little-discussed issue, the threat of rape, which many families interviewed in Jordan and Lebanon cited as a primary reason for their flight.

“Many women and girls relayed accounts of being attacked in public or in their homes, primarily by armed men,” the report said. “These rapes, sometimes by multiple perpetrators, often occur in front of family members.”

The report said that rape and sexual assault have been underreported because of social stigma that can be directed at victims and their families. For those who remain inside Syria, the situation is equally dire, the report says. Many families have been displaced multiple times and have no access to schools or jobs. Sanitation services have halted in many areas, increasing the spread of disease, while the health care system has been effectively dismantled.

January 14th, 2013, 8:28 am


zoo said:

@58. GEORGES said:

Syria was an illusion, in reality it’s Assadistan.

..and you wish it becomes a whahabistan.

January 14th, 2013, 8:29 am


Tara said:


I am glad you posted bright and early. I worry when I don’t hear from you,

January 14th, 2013, 8:35 am


Ghufran said:

إتهم حزب “الأمة الإسلامي” المعارض في المملكة العربية السعودية التي لا تعترف بالأحزاب، النظام السعودي بارتكاب ما وصفه “بجرائم ضد الإنسانية”.
وقال عضو الهيئة التأسيسية للحزب محمد بن سعد آل مفرح في بيان نشر على موقع وكالة “الجزيرة للأنباء”، التي تهتم بأخبار المعارضة بالسعودية، اليوم، إن “النظام السعودي ارتكب العديد من الجرائم ضد الإنسانية منها مقتل العديد من المعتقلين في السجون السعودية وإخفاء جثثهم، فضلاً عن التعذيب المنافي للقيم الإنسانية في المعتقلات والسجون”.
وكان حزب “الأمة الإسلامي” ، حمّل الملك السعودي عبد الله بن عبد العزيز ووزير داخليته الأمير محمد بن نايف، مسؤولية زج النساء والأطفال في السجون، بسبب تجمعهن بشكل سلمي أمام ديوان المظالم في بريدة شمالي الرياض، للمطالبة بالإفراج عن ذويهم المعتقلين في السجون منذ سنوات من دون محاكمة.

January 14th, 2013, 8:36 am


zoo said:

Violence plagues Tunisia’s politics 2 years later
By BOUAZZA BEN BOUAZZA and PAUL SCHEMM | Associated Press – 4 hrs ago

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Two years after the revolution that overthrew an authoritarian president and started the Arab Spring, Tunisia is struggling with high unemployment and rising violence in its politics.

After sounding the alarm for months over the rise of religious extremists, the opposition now warns that the new threat to this North African country’s democratic transition are vigilante bands allied to the elected government.

The rise of violence and internal tensions in Tunisia couldn’t come at a worse time as the situation outside its borders deteriorates, with al-Qaida newly active in the Sahara, partly fueled by the weapons pouring out of Libya’s civil war. In December, police reported finding two militant training camps near the Algerian border, likely to prepare disaffected Tunisians to join the jihads south in Mali or neighboring Algeria.

“With the situation in Libya, the Algerian border and in northern Mali, the threat posed by armed groups is likely to increase,” Jourchi said.

January 14th, 2013, 8:46 am


zoo said:

These are Saudi Arabia’s conditions to give to Egypt the desperately money it needs: Acquit its long time friend Mobarak and allow him to go to Saudi Arabia in exile

Egypt’s Mubarak to get new trial over killings HAMZA HENDAWI – AP – 14 hrs ago

CAIRO (AP) — An Egyptian appeals court on Sunday overturned Hosni Mubarak’s life sentence and ordered a retrial of the ousted leader in the killing of hundreds of protesters, … Mor

January 14th, 2013, 8:51 am


Louis Proyect said:

Pepe Escobar? I generally take Josh Landis seriously but when he stoops to link to the left’s Pamela Geller, I have second thoughts.

January 14th, 2013, 8:53 am


zoo said:

After the chemical, the cluster bomb claim pops up again.

Syria using rockets to spread cluster bombs: HRW


Syria is not a party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions which bans the production, stockpiling, transfer and use of these weapons and also provides for the destruction of existing stockpiles.

January 14th, 2013, 8:54 am


Tara said:

Batta should undergo speech therapy to lessen his problem. I was told everyone in in Damascus makes fun of him when he tries to hurry his wife أثرعي ياأثماء

January 14th, 2013, 9:10 am


majedkhaldoun said:

Slow death,that is what the regime is going through,the nonsense by Zoozoo and Ghufran,is just that nonsense,Assad power is diminishing gradually,Assad is destroying Syria,he can not get the Syrian support doing that,his shabbiha are criminals thieves and rapists, this is not a country that can survive,Evil will burn itself, the Rebels has the moral high ground, in the long run they will win, it is long and bloody and full of misery, but with hardship there is hope,with persistance there is progress,with time there is change,the rebels will win.

January 14th, 2013, 9:32 am


zoo said:

The UN envoy: a useless elderly tourist

“Lakhdar Brahimi resembles an elderly tourist making in a pleasant tour in capitals around the world,” wrote the daily As-Saura. “He has done nothing except try to derail the political settlements to Syria out of the crisis.”

“Brahimi has never denounced the armed terrorist groups and countries that support them. He has strayed from his mission (…) If he is not holding a plan for a solution, it would be better if he leaves the Syrians alone, “the newspaper added.

January 14th, 2013, 9:54 am


zoo said:

#70 Majie

Don’t you want to add a big thanks to Al Nusra for their contributions to destroy the ‘evil’?

January 14th, 2013, 10:01 am


sami said:


You can try to spin it any callous way you want, HRW does not claim the Assadist are using cluster munitions it has DOCUMENTED that the Assadists have and continue to do so on CIVILIAN targets.

Your latest post that you conveniently excerpted you left out the new bit about how your Assadist have escalated their cluster munitions use:

The watchdog said that based on interviews with witnesses, analysis of around a dozen videos posted online by activists and photographs taken by an international journalist, it has concluded that regime forces have been using the Egypt-made munitions since early December.

It said evidence indicates that Syrian forces used BM-21 Grad multi-barrel rocket launchers to deliver cluster munitions in attacks near the city of Idlib in December 2012 and in Latamneh, a town northwest of Hama, on January 3, 2013.

No wonder people like to call you a propagandist….

January 14th, 2013, 10:03 am


revenire said:

HRW is a propaganda tool. I WISH the SAA was using cluster bombs, chemical weapons, nukes, and the kitchen sink.

Wipe the rats out.

January 14th, 2013, 10:36 am


Tara said:


And same to your family.

January 14th, 2013, 10:47 am


Syrian said:

A picture worth a thousand words
A leaked picture for the 15 yeras old Tariq shahood after 8 months in the regime dungeon, he has not lost his smile nor the fire in his eyes!/photo.php?fbid=324784764296651&id=309813415793786&set=a.309816365793491.69072.309813415793786&__user=0

January 14th, 2013, 10:55 am


revenire said:

Tara you can French kiss (that is a joke in reference to Mali) al-Nusra all you like. I say wipe them all out.

If they were in New York right now the US army would kill every single one of them.

January 14th, 2013, 10:59 am



63. ZOO
What do you base yourself on to claim that I want it to become Wahhabistan? On post #58 ?

January 14th, 2013, 11:00 am


revenire said:

Georges you’re obviously insane and part of the Wahabi rat legion sent by Saudi princes and Erdogan. That is what I base it on. Obviously I can speak for Zoo.

January 14th, 2013, 11:06 am


revenire said:

Assad enjoys support of millions across Syria: Mimi al-Laham

Press TV: The unrest in Syria has resulted in thousands of refugees. Who is to blame?

Al-Laham: I think it’s pretty obvious who is to blame and that is the people who have fueled the insurrection since day one.

Also, you have the fact that the population centers, the city centers didn’t rise up in support of the insurrection. They rose up, in fact, in millions in support of the government. That’s also an indicator.

January 14th, 2013, 11:12 am


Tara said:


Shocking. Isn’t it? I am shocked too but Oh well…Every time you wish death on Syrians, I will wish it on your family… Would you like that?

January 14th, 2013, 11:17 am


revenire said:

“the Rebels has the moral high ground”

One of the most idiotic statements I’ve seen here. People who behead Christians don’t have moral high ground. The FSA has looted Aleppo and are killing each other fighting over the stolen loot. Jabhat al-Nusra are the same terrorists who murdered US soldiers in Iraq.

This is nothing but a mercenary army of ignorant rabble and everyone hates them.

When the SAA enters a part of a city the citizens cheer for them. You never see that with the FSA. The only ones at their demonstrations are other terrorists.

MAJEDKHALDOUN I hope you never reproduce. The world has too many like you already.

January 14th, 2013, 11:18 am


revenire said:

Tara I am not wishing death on Syrians but on terrorists. It doesn’t shock me that you would call for my family to be murdered by terrorists… after all, you supported them and have for a long time. You have called for bloody death on this forum for over one year.

I don’t see you saying one word about France bombing Mali and killing all the terrorists its fighter planes can. You’re a fraud and an expat sitting in a warm home. You abandoned Syria and now we reject you.

Stay out.

January 14th, 2013, 11:20 am


Tara said:


I am surprised you are kinda polite in your discourse. I do not see that you resort to personal insults and I like that. What you say is outrageous and unacceptable but you are polite. You are not a peasant. Who are you?

January 14th, 2013, 11:25 am


revenire said:

Of course I am polite.

Again – if al-Nusra was in – let’s say for example – lower Manhattan demanding the oppressive regime of Obama (and it is oppressive) be overthrown and was blowing up New York and beheading Christians the US military would kill every single terrorist. No one would cry “human rights” and shed tears for the rats. France is blowing up Mali now (I am certain innocent women and children are dying).

It is okay for France to kill terrorists but Assad can’t wipe them out?

You yourself would not want to live under a theocratic regime dominated by apes that impose sharia law and abuse women.

Syria is a secular nation where all religions are respected and have freedom.

There is no getting around that.

PS: And I have never called for gassing Sunni villages or killing civilians. I’ve never brought one secular word into this ongoing conversation. The people fomenting secular war are the US, UK, France, the Saudis, etc. not the Syrian government. It is quite easy to divide and conquer if you can get the entire Middle East to fight along secular lines. It is also quite easy to take desperate people and give them guns and have them do stupid things – this was one reason 2000+ were freed and we all know it.

January 14th, 2013, 11:53 am


zoo said:

#73 SAMI

About “Cluster Bombs”, document yourself before throwing accusations of propaganda!

The USA, like Syria and many other countries, IS NOT a signatory of the treaty.

HRW can report and prove what they want, Syria has all the legal right to use them if it wishes.

“As one of the countries that did not ratify the treaty, the United States said that cluster bombs are a legal form of weapon, and that they had a “clear military utility in combat.” It also said that compared to other types of weapons, cluster bombs are less harmful to civilians.[29]”

January 14th, 2013, 12:00 pm


MarigoldRan said:

Revenire is a college student with too much free time on his hands. He uses words that a college student would use if they were trolling. It makes him obvious like a beacon of darkness in daytime.

January 14th, 2013, 12:05 pm


revenire said:

HRW has long been a political tool.

The only ones who would parade around Human Right Watch are those who 1.) want NATO to bomb Syria and kill 100s of 1000s of Syrians (because the nation will resist) 2.) ignorant of what HRW is.

My opinion is Syria should use them if they have them (and I feel this way about chemical weapons too) and if NATO wants to attack let them.

Most of the areas where the FSA goes are almost 100% free of civilians. They flee the fighting. The SAA could drop leaflets saying “You have 24 hours to surrender” and then just gas them.

No one told the US not to use the atomic bomb on Japan. The US has NOTHING to say about Syria – I repeat: NOTHING.

January 14th, 2013, 12:10 pm


MarigoldRan said:

The war continues.

January 14th, 2013, 12:14 pm


zoo said:


More for you..the cluster bombs are made in Egypt which is not either a signatory of the treaty.
By the way this treaty impose its rules on the signatories only.
Syria, like Egypt, the Usa, China etc…, is not bound by its rules, as it has not signed it.

The propagandists are the ones who use HRW for political purpose.

HRW: Syrian regime using Egypt-made cluster bombs against opponents
Egypt Independent
Mon, 14/01/2013 – 14:15

January 14th, 2013, 12:19 pm


revenire said:


Report says Assad residing on warship

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 14 (UPI) — Syrian President Bashar Assad and his family have been living on a warship, with security provided by Russia, intelligence sources told a Saudi newspaper.

An Al-Watan report Monday says the family and Assad aides are residing on the ship in the Mediterranean Sea and that he travels to Syria by helicopter to attend official meetings and receptions.

Otherwise, he stays on the warship, the sources told the Arabic language newspaper.

When he flies to his embattled country, the president lands at undisclosed locations and is transported to the presidential palace under heavy guard, the sources said.

The Russian-guarded warship provides a safe environment for Assad, who has lost confidence in his own security detail, the report said.

Assad’s presence on the warship suggests he has been granted political asylum by Russia but there has been no official comment from Moscow, the newspaper said.

The circumstances reinforce Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s comment Sunday that Assad’s removal from power is “impossible to implement,” the newspaper said.

Assad’s presence on the ship could be a sign of looming negotiations on the conflict in Syria, the report said.

“It is necessary to make everybody, including the opposition, which is still categorically denying any dialogue, to sit down at the negotiating table, Radio Free Europe Radio Liberty quoted Lavrov as saying during a visit to the Ukraine.

Read more:

January 14th, 2013, 12:22 pm


ghufran said:

Attacking Swayda was wrong politically and probably militarily, on top of that the attack has failed,for now,and scores of people from the attackers side got killed including the rebels chief:
“المجلس العسكري الثوري في السويداء” اصدر بيانا جاء فيه ” ببالغ الحزن و الأسى نتقدّم بأحرّ التعازي على شهداء السهل و الجبل الذين ضحّوا بدمائهم الزكية على ثرى السويداء,مؤكّدين وحدة العزاء و المصير، عسى الله أن يتغمدهم بواسع رحمته و يسكنهم فسيح جنّاته”

January 14th, 2013, 12:32 pm


zoo said:

Obama needs Russia, Putin sees little reasons to help

Sour U.S.-Russia relations threaten Obama’s foreign policy agenda

A poisonous unraveling of U.S. relations with Russia in recent months represents more than the failure of President Obama’s first-term attempt to “reset” badly frayed bilateral relations. It threatens pillars of Obama’s second-term foreign policy agenda as well.

From Syria and Iran to North Korea and Afghanistan, Russian President Vladimir Putin holds cards that he can use to help or hurt Obama administration objectives.

Obama badly needs Russian help to get U.S. troops and gear out of landlocked Afghanistan. He also wants Russian cooperation — or at least a quiet agreement not to interfere — on other international fronts.

Putin, however, appears to see little reason to help. Since his election last year to a third term as president, his political stock has risen among many Russians as he has confronted the West, and the United States in particular. The pro-democracy street demonstrations of a year ago have evaporated, leaving the former KGB officer in clear control.

January 14th, 2013, 12:35 pm


Tara said:

Assad living with his family in a warship? It reflects an intense state of fear. Is this how Asma spend her time? Being afraid of sunlight? How is it different from a prison? Does she “cook” Fondue anymore? Wow! What a divine justice!

January 14th, 2013, 12:58 pm


revenire said:

I believe Russia is well aware the target of the Syrian war is Russia and Russian policy. They were burned in Libya and won’t make the same mistake. The US wants to destroy Russia, as they tried after the Berlin Wall fell.

The FSA, when you boil it down, are really NATO mercenaries. France would bomb the FSA in two seconds flat.

The sad thing is the desperate fools who were sucked into this fake revolution.

January 14th, 2013, 1:08 pm


zoo said:


The source of the info is ‘Saudi intelligence sources” telling Saudi newspaper Al Watan. I have not seen any confirmation from other sources.

If you read the following, you may have some doubt about Al Watan’s sources reliability and Al Arabya honesty

Russian diplomat says Assad ready to step down: report

Wednesday, 15 August 2012
Saudi Arabian newspaper al-Watan reported Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov (pictured) as saying that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was ready to step down. (Reuters)

January 14th, 2013, 1:13 pm


revenire said:

Tara I don’t believe the Saudi report for one minute do you?

It is war propaganda intended to demoralize, like the “Assad needs a psychiatrist” thing from yesterday.

You’re smart enough to know that psychological warfare is part of war. Images of children that were murdered by the “regime” etc.

Remember the BBC using the photo of the dead bodies from Iraq?

Assad living on a Russian ship is wild. I had a good laugh at that one.

January 14th, 2013, 1:15 pm



Assad sectarian thugs

January 14th, 2013, 1:19 pm


zoo said:

Qatar intervening in Northern Mali?
December 2, 2012 by editors

Global Geopolitics & Political Economy

By Mehdi Lazar

While it is likely that ECOWAS is preparing for a military intervention to regain northern Mali following the military coup of March 22nd, 2012 that overthrew the regime of Amadou Toumani Touré, more and more is being said about Qatar’s involvement in this part of the Sahel.
Taking advantage of the dual crisis afflicting this country – Islamist groups have benefited from the Tuareg rebellion to take control of the north and a military coup overthrew the incumbent president in Bamako – the emirate would advance its pawns on the territory on a path towards Afghanization. A game which if confirmed would prove quite dangerous.

Qatar’s presence in Mali has been proved but in a manner that remains unclear

January 14th, 2013, 1:33 pm


ghufran said:

“Slow death,that is what the regime is going through,the nonsense by Zoozoo and Ghufran,is just that nonsense,Assad power is diminishing gradually,Assad is destroying Syria,he can not get the Syrian support doing that,his shabbiha are criminals thieves and rapists, this is not a country that can survive,Evil will burn itself, the Rebels has the moral high ground, in the long run they will win, it is long and bloody and full of misery, but with hardship there is hope,with persistance there is progress,with time there is change,the rebels will win”
(I am amazed that mr khaldoun passed his TOEFL exam,not to mention his medical exams, but even if you ignore the poor composition of the post you can not escape the conflicting statements about a country that is dying but is still full of hope for the future,etc.
I think a lot of you guys are starting to realize the crime committed against Syria by its own people from the top down, the focus,I suggest, should be to save what can be saved instead of pursuing this slow death strategy, Syria today is not much better than Afghanistan, idiotic posts like the one in # 70 do very little to change this fact, I will post a list of good charity organizations that are focused on Syria instead of having another exchange with advocates of violence and “slow death” )

January 14th, 2013, 1:39 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:

94. TARA

“Is this how Asma spends her time? Being afraid of sunlight? How is it different from a prison? Does she “cook” Fondue anymore? Wow! What a divine justice.”

It’s crazy in this city.
It’s a parallel universe
All the cops are cutthroats.
It only can get worse.

The al-Assads are werewolves
Maher’s a bombardier.
Asma’s locked in a tower.
She stares into a mirror.

A New Bashar Cartoon

January 14th, 2013, 1:45 pm


Tara said:


Is the current prez of Mali really democratic and secular ? Or is he as democratic and as secular as Bashar is? I do not know what to believe and was really never interested. Is what happening in Mali similar to Syria with revolutionaries being called Terrorists /jihadist /or what have you. Everyone lies so unless you are native to a country, it is difficult to decide who to believe?

January 14th, 2013, 1:51 pm


Tara said:


Was the first poem posted by D-A-L-E composed by him? It was really excellent.

January 14th, 2013, 2:03 pm


revenire said:


Syria rebels seize ‘game-changing’ arms cache
Rebel commander tells Al Jazeera that weapons captured at Taftanaz airbase have potential to change course of conflict.

Syrian rebels have been forced to withdraw from Taftanaz military airbase in northwestern Idlib province, which was captured on Friday, but a commander of the fighting forces has said they managed to take many weapons with them.

Abou Hamed, a commander of Jabhat-al-Nusra, a group taking part in the capture of the base, told Al Jazeera that the weapons fighters seized will be a “game-changer” for the rebels.

“These weapons will benefit us a lot in our work on the ground,” he said. “And by God’s will, we will capture more places like that one. They will have great importance on the battlefield.”

The US State Department has branded Jabhat al-Nusra as a terrorist organisation, citing the group’s alleged links to al-Qaeda.

Responding to the allegations, Abou Hamed said: “We serve our religion in any way possible. If America was serving the religion of Allah and establishing the law of God, we would be American.

“If al-Qaeda works to establish law and justice among the people, and spreads religion in the country, then we are with al-Qaeda.”

January 14th, 2013, 2:11 pm


ghufran said:

It is possible that the army is just too tired and too stretched to control the borders with Israel but I personally think the borders are left soldierless on purpose:
أشارت إسرائيل، يوم الاثنين، إلى أن “مقاتلين تابعين للجيش الحر باتوا الآن على السياج الفاصل بين سوريا وإسرائيل في المنطقة القريبة من الجولان” السوري المحتل.
وذكرت وكالة الأنباء الكويتية (كونا) أن الجيش الإسرائيلي قال، بحسب ما نقلت عنه الإذاعة الإسرائيلية، إن “مقاتلي الجيش الحر سيطروا على اماكن كثيرة على طول الحدود عدا قطاع صغير من الارض قرب مدينة القنيطرة ما زال في ايدي قوات الجيش”، مبينا أن “إسرائيل على اتصال مباشر مع الولايات المتحدة حول تلك القضية”.

January 14th, 2013, 2:14 pm


revenire said:

Tara I have a question for you: Should the Syrian Army allow Al-Qaeda to attack Syria?

You saw the al-Nusra terrorist quoted in Al Jazeera.

Do you believe Al-Qaeda should be left to do what they like?

Please answer me. Please don’t answer by bringing up Assad. I just wonder what you think of terrorism.

Or perhaps you believe al-Nusra aren’t terrorists? Are all the Syrians who believe al-Nusra are terrorists condemned to die? Do they have a right to defend themselves or should they just surrender?

January 14th, 2013, 2:19 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:


“It is possible that the army is just too tired and too stretched to control the border”

Remember the math of this war: dead opposition soldiers get replaced; dead regime soldiers don’t.

January 14th, 2013, 2:22 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:


“We will always love Asma”

She doesn’t look like that anymore, dude.

January 14th, 2013, 2:32 pm


5 dancing shlomos said:

the rubbish rebels are so caring for syria, the syrian people, the syrian history and culture that they are destroying whatever they can so jews coming from the toxic waste dump they created in palestine will feel comfortable.

president assad and the syrian army, continue giving these rat-brained, mongrel dogs the beating they deserve.

January 14th, 2013, 2:52 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

A very interesting (depressing) story cited by Ghufran at #92.

It is a bit more extensive than the excerpt above, but well worth examining for its sources, claims, and the credibility of the reporting.

سوريا – ميليشيا الجيش الحر دخلت السويداء..ولم تخرج

شتات نيوز – اصيبت المعارضة السورية بضربة معنوية كبيرة إثر فشلها في نقل حمم المعارك الميدانية الدائرة في سورية إلى محافظة السويداء التي كانت هادئة نسبيا طوال الفترة الماضية، رياح الهجوم المسلح لم يأتي كما تشتهيه سفن ميليشيا الجيش السوري الحر، وما يطلق عليه المجلس العسكري الثوري في السويداء بعد تكبدهما لخسائر جسيمة لم يكن اكثر المتفائلين من الموالين للنظام يتوقعها.

هجوم الميليشيات المسلحة على السويداء ليس الأول من نوعه، فجبهة النصرة كانت سباقة في شن هجومين على حاجز المجيمر، وبلدة سميع حيث وجدت مقاومة عنيفة من اللجان الشعبية التي إنبرت لمقاتلتها، ومساعدة الجيش العربي السوري فكانت النتيجة مصرع قائد المسلحين، واسر عدد من مقاتليه، الأمر الذي دفع بزملائهم إلى إختطاف سبعة عشر مدنيا لا ناقة لهم، ولا جمل بما حصل.

[ . . . ]

January 14th, 2013, 2:57 pm


O said:

This was posted by Revenire
“If they were in New York right now the US army would kill every single one of them”

this is typical of the dictatorship brain washing that 40 years of illegitimate misrule have produced.

Neither in the US nor in Syria is the army allowed to use force on civilians without proper authorization from the people.

If the state of emergency is truly abrogated, the armed forces cannot act without people’s approval or a reinstitutiuon of the state of emergency and even at that, there is an oversight that is constant and pervasive.

This is what we have been saying all along about the rule of law and this is why the regime is beyond redemption and beyond reform.

It is intrinsically illegitimate and dictatorial

Justice for Hamza one Shabih at a time.

I will use like TARA the very words of this Shabih but instead of wishing it on his family ( which may be in the opposition by the way ) I will remind everyone of the ILLEGITIMACY of the regime and the INCONSISTENCIES of its discourse.


January 14th, 2013, 2:58 pm


Tara said:


The entity you are labeling as the “Syrian army” is more qualified to be labeled as terrorist organization than an other terrorist organization ever exist and has done more killing than any other qualified entity. I therefore believe that the so called SAA should be fought and dismantled. I of course do not want Syria to be infiltrated by any one with Qaeda etiology. I believe religion should be kept at home and I believe in total separation between the state and church.

After the fall of Bashar, al Nusra should be asked to leave. I also come to believe that HA in Lebanon is indeed a terrorist organization and should be dismantled.

January 14th, 2013, 2:59 pm


Observer said:

112 Above was my post, the computer did not include the full identification

January 14th, 2013, 3:00 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

Here is the link that was left off the posted excerpt at #106:

I agree with Ghufran that the SAA has been deliberately removed from the border area … but I think the reasons for this withdrawal are not simple; there is no one single cause, in my opinion.

In any case, the disappearance of the SAA in the area is not ‘breaking’ news. The Kuwaiti News service may have been napping the past seven months …

January 14th, 2013, 3:05 pm


revenire said:

Tara it’s a simple question I asked. It is easy to say the SAA is worse than X but that wasn’t my question. I simply asked: do you support al-Nusra/Al-Qaeda or not.

I guess you answered yes?

Syria has already been infiltrated with terrorist ideology and I don’t mean the Syrian army.

What should happen to the millions who support the current government Tara? Should they all be killed?

January 14th, 2013, 3:05 pm


annie said:

Rev’s friends and playmates

The West is rushing to rescue Mali but it is eyes shut when faced with such barbarians

January 14th, 2013, 3:06 pm


revenire said:

Bill what exactly is your expertise in military matters? I can’t imagine getting loaded on booze and pills in a Vancouver mosh pit, sobering up and trying for a normal life has prepared you for this.

January 14th, 2013, 3:07 pm


Tara said:


Killers shall be killed after a due process. Supporters of the killing who do not have blood on their hands should be rehabilitated. The system that allowed such hatred to brew and manifest should be dismantled.

January 14th, 2013, 3:13 pm


revenire said:

“Killers shall be killed after a due process.”

Everyone has seen the FSA execute unarmed soldiers. You didn’t denounce it. I will guess it is okay for them to do it or are they also included in your statement?

Again, what about the millions who support the current Syrian government? Do you think they will just shuffle off into the night or will they/are they fighting?

Tara a tough question for you: Does the Syrian government have a right to defend itself from al-Nusra and those who have taken up arms?

And, do you support Al-Qaeda in the US too? If they feel the US has “let them down” over arming their al-Nusra brothers can they just kill a bunch of Americans?

January 14th, 2013, 3:30 pm


revenire said:

Ziad posted lots of great news today. The SAA heroes are sending many rats to Rat Paradise.

DAMASCUS: Douma – An entire terrorist group was captured when SAA regulars supported by militia raided a home in Douma where a huge quantity of C-4 explosive was found. Besides, wiring, timing and remote control devices, drugs were discovered. These rats were dressed in ordinary street clothes, a serious problem, as Monzer says, when it comes to distinguishing between innocent civilians and the enemy:

At Rukn-Al-Din, a quarter in the capital, 8 cockroaches were killed in a firefight after their den was uncovered by the SAA. They were in the process of assembling crude IEDs. Their names are:

Wajih Abu-Sara
Mufid Zeid Al-Jundi
Arif Ahmad Shalhout
Alaa’-Al-Din Wardani
Muhammad Ahmad Afar (non-Syrian)
Khattar Youssef Al-Mufarreh (Jordanian)
Ali Mu’in Al-Awad
Muhammad Shadi Ali-Ahmad

ALEPPO: 5 Turks arrested trying to pillage a warehouse at Khan Al-‘Asal.

At Hanano, several rats were captured inside their den surrounded by drugs and bomb-making devices.
No names available.

HOMS: At the town of Maheen, 27 cockroaches were crushed and deposited in the toilet. Only two names have been sent to us. There are some Saudis and Lebanese in the group:

Ammar Sabri Muwaqqet
Wajdi Muhammad Khalifeh

I can also confirm that the four Turkish pilots captured in Northern Syria at the Kweirek airbase were a part of the exchange for the 48 Iranians. I think it was Hans who wanted to know. It’s confirmed now.

IDLIB: Large demonstration demanding removal of terrorists and giving support to the Army in Idlib City.

January 14th, 2013, 3:39 pm


5 dancing shlomos said:

her crimes so overwhelming, her lies so numerous, her brain exploded.

the cackling witch no longer cackles only drools and her bowels run uncontrolled.

poor bill the grifter.

he wanted more time in the white house. those fun flights in helicopters and that 747 – all on the taxpayer’s dime.

January 14th, 2013, 3:40 pm


ghufran said:

When I spoke about the victim copying the behavior of the perpetrator some of you did not like it. The Syrian scene is today full of such behavior by armed thugs who do not want anybody else to represent the opposition, that reminds me of Assad who arrested scores of educated secular figures to get rid if any potential competition.
Here is a fresh example:
قام أمن الثورة باعتقال مصعب الحمادي وهو عضو لجان التنسيق المحلية في حماة وعضو اتحاد ثوار حماة ومذيع في قناة المجد وكاتب وناشط معروف في أوساط المعارضين والمثقفين.
وسبب الاعتقال هو مقالة نشرها الحمادي في صحيفة “طلعنا عالحرية” ينتقد فيها الممارسات السلبية للثوار.
ومن الانتقادات القاسية التي وجهها الحمادي علاقة الذل والتبعية بين الثوار وقادتهم وقال الحمادي أن ما شاهده بأم عينه يجعله مقتنعاً أنه “لو أمر القائد أحد الثوار بقل بريء لفعل”.
وأشار بشكل صريح إلى اللجنة الأمنية وأدائها وهي اللجبة التي اعتقلته بعد نشر المقال، وقال أن هذه اللجنة منذ تشكيلها ” كانت وبالاً على حياة السكان بتصرفات عناصرها الذين بزّوا بسلوكياتهم الفاسدة شبيحة النظام” بحسب قوله… وأضاف متهماً إياها : “بسرقة البنزين والمازوت من الكازيات وبيعهما للأهالي بأرقامٍ فلكية, وفرض أتاواتٍ مالية على الناس بطريقة (الخوّة), وعدم رعاية حرمات وجهاء البلد, وإهانة دهمائها لأهون الأسباب”.
وقد ذكرت مصادر إعلامية قريبة من لجان التنسيق في حماة أن الناشط الحمادي تعرض للضرب والإهانة وجرى اعتقاله من منزله بأقذر الأساليب وذلك على يد جماعة مسلحين من اللجنة الأمنية في منطقة قلعة المضيق بريف حماة.

January 14th, 2013, 3:44 pm


revenire said:

Bill “the grifter” Scherk you’re one of the more immoral posters here, or on Twitter (not saying much in a sea of terrorist supporters but we are forced to call a spade a spade). You honestly remind me of a Nazi Scherk. You go about harassing women like Susan and Sharmine and try to pass yourself off as some sort of compassionate expert on all things Syrian.

Some would suggest the only expertise you have is with a half-pint of Old Crow as tired old Damned 45s spin round and round.

I bet you bought both the Syrian Danny story along with Gay Girl in Damascus. You seem the type.

January 14th, 2013, 3:53 pm


Citizen said:

Zionist Spring Offensive in the Middle East Probable
Posted on January 14, 2013 by Rick Bronson
Considering the truth that our economy is doomed to fail completely, I have to believe that a beginning of hostilities in Syria and Iran have already been sanctioned for this spring. I believe the Zionists will go through with it, quite simply because they have no other choice.

The American people are awake. The sleeping giant has awoken and those who have brought him from his slumber are trembling in fear as they are just now realizing the magnitude of what they have done. This whirlwind cannot be stopped but the Zionists will attempt the most diabolical acts in their best effort to do so.

January 14th, 2013, 4:09 pm


zoo said:

The IRC report about the sexual violence against women in Syrian does not point to any of the parties. They simply refer the perpetrators as “armed men” ( see attached full report)

Yet many Western media are already insidiously manipulating the information to accuse the Syrian army and its allies of these crimes. For them it is a new scoop to exploit to demonize even more the regime while minimizing the horrors, decapitation and others perpetatred by the rebels.

These accusation without proofs as well as the “cluster bomb” claims are clear indications that the western media are looking for a diversion to hide the beating the rebels are suffering of in Damascus and the suburbs as well as the increased difficulties they are encountering in the North to keep the ‘liberated’ now emptied of their population.

January 14th, 2013, 4:18 pm


revenire said:

The Western media is part of the war on Syria, including this site.

Love to hear what areas the FSA has liberated. We often hear the press say the FSA controls 70% of Syria (or was that the traitor ex-PM?) but when pressed they can’t name one city the FSA controls.

Each day Assad remains is a win for us. Long live Bashar!

Tara I am waiting for your answer to this question: Does the Syrian government have a right to defend itself from al-Nusra and those who have taken up arms?

January 14th, 2013, 4:22 pm


Citizen said:

You personally think the borders are left soldierless on purpose,
if the army is just too tired and also very, very exhausted and wearing slippers what are you mean?

January 14th, 2013, 4:22 pm


zoo said:

Another year with Assad
by Fyodor Lukyanov at 14/01/2013 22:36

The year 2013 began much like 2012 – with news of fighting in Syria and predictions that the tide is about to turn in the country’s protracted civil war. However, confidence that the dictator’s days are numbered is not as strong as it was a year ago.

We were told that the war had reached a turning point at least three times in 2012. Some highranking officials defected to the opposition, others were killed in explosions in Damascus. The rebels claimed to be in control of the bulk of the country and leading Western powers recognized the opposition as a legitimate representative of the Syrian people. But all of this didn’t lead to much.

Moreover, in early January 2013 Bashar al-Assad delivered a defiant speech, making it clear that he is not about to surrender.

The world’s attention is focused on Syria for reasons beyond its ongoing civil war. The Syrian conflict has come to encapsulate contemporary international politics and the problems facing the world community.

First, the authoritarian regimes that have been in power for decades are in steep decline. Societies are no longer willing to acquiesce to repression and persecution even for the sake of development and a decent quality of life (what the new governments could offer is unclear).

This was inevitable, and so it is strange to hear people in Russia claim that the changes roiling the Middle East were provoked by outside forces. Democracy is indeed spreading through the region, though not at all with results the West had expected.

Secondly, the conflict in Syria is drawn along sectarian lines. The Syrian crisis began as a protest against a stagnant autocracy and for democracy, but soon morphed into a confrontation between the ruling Shia minority (supported by other ethnic minorities, who fear change even though they don’t like the status quo) and the disenfranchised Sunni majority. Syria has become the first battleground of a great Middle Eastern feud, which began in the 1970s with the Shia-led Iranian revolution and has dominated the regional politics over the past decade.

The opposing camps refuse to budge because there can be no compromise in a religious struggle for survival. Syria is the second great conflict, after Bosnia and Kosovo in the 1990s, in which a medieval conception of identity is becoming the dominant force, fanning the flames of civil strife. Worse still, Syria is unlikely to be the last example of this kind of war.

Thirdly, Syria is caught up in a regional rivalry with sectarian overtones. Iran and Saudi Arabia are vying for religious, geopolitical, energy-related and ethnic dominance in the region. They have allies both inside and outside Syria, and judging by the way the conflict is progressing, the balance of power is roughly equal.

Lastly, great powers are vying not so much for their presence and interests as for their worldview. This explains Moscow’s inflexibility, which many ascribe to mere commercial interests or an affinity for troglodytic dictators. Elements of both are likely at play, but Russia’s true motivation lies elsewhere. Russia sees Syria as the last chance to prevent the intervention in Libya from becoming a precedent for how the local conflicts are resolved.

In Libya, external forces sided with the “right” side in the internecine conflict and used all the means available, including direct military intervention, to ensure their victory. Therefore, the Kremlin’s uncompromising stance is only indirectly related to Middle Eastern or Syrian affairs: fundamentally, it is about the principles governing international relations.

This is why the outcome of the Syrian war is so consequential for global politics. The complex web of influences at play in Syria makes it difficult to predict how events will unfold. The players have adopted their strategies and placed their bets – now they are just hoping to hit the jackpot.

There can be no simple solution to the complex problems in Syria, and Moscow has been saying so from the very beginning of the conflict. If Assad’s resignation could end the conflict, as the West insists, he would have stepped down long ago. But since this is not the case, there is a chance that Assad will still be in power as we ring in 2014.

January 14th, 2013, 4:27 pm


Tara said:


The Syrian government has no right even to exist. The Syrian government should be fought, dismantled, and its key figures tried and those with blood on their hands executed according to the law. It was delegitimized when it opened fire on the people it was supposed to serve. It is a militia that call itself a government.

January 14th, 2013, 4:33 pm


zoo said:

#127 Citizen

It’s impossible to control a border of 800kms.

The Syrian army seem to have made the choice of making sure the North of Syria ‘liberated areas’ are constantly unsafe by occasional bombings while obliging the Turks to feed and supply basic needs to the rebels and the civilians still there. This is costing a lot of money to Turkey that also has to feed on their territories 200,000 syrians with very little international help as they are no considered officially as refugees. This number is expected to grow as the civilians in the North areas would prefer to live on the safety of Turkish camps than under the chaotic and dangerous rule of the rebels.

By letting the humanitarian situation in the North degrade and increasingly “turkicized”, the Syrian government expects that the civilians will gradually turn against the rebels for not protecting them, not feeding them and relying on foreigners.

That way the Syrian army can concentrate the large cities where most population of the country lives and keep then rebels free.

Unless a serious effort is made by the international community to create a no-fly zone and provide a huge humanitarian help, the North of Syria may not remain for long in the hands of the rebels

January 14th, 2013, 4:46 pm



US and Israel are trying to get beneffit from Assad and Russia foolness, wilderness and stupidity. Too many rumors about the future partition in a country where maybe just 1 % of syrians would like the idea of splitting the country.

Assad will fall, Assad´s Syrian Army will fall, Iran ambitions will fall, but Syria will probably be broken not by its own populations but by the same International Community that makes nothing to stop Assad from killing Syria´s population and dismantling Syria´s economy.

All in all shamefull and despicable, Assad, Russia, Iran, China and US. Israel is not despicable, Israel is simply the origin of all arab dictatorships sponsored by East and West, and cause of all wars, it is a big sheeeeet.

January 14th, 2013, 5:02 pm


revenire said:

US can’t control its borders so why would anyone think Syria can? US is not even in the same kind of war but does have a drug war going.

Let the rats sit on the borders, our air force can wipe them out like sitting ducks.

January 14th, 2013, 5:12 pm


majedkhaldoun said:
Only idiots call for dialogue with Assad, there is no way the opposition will talk with Assad, Lavrove agreed in Geneva that a transitional goverment must be formed, and with FULL authority, this means Assad will have no authority anymore,you can not have two authorities in the same place.

I agree that those who has blood on their hand must be killed, this could mean over 100,000 Assad thugs will be killed,that means it is war to the end,no matter how long it will take.

Those ,who are relatives of Assad thugs,who were able to flee to other countries ,will be hunted,don’t you ever think that you can hide anywhere.

January 14th, 2013, 5:13 pm


revenire said:

“The Syrian government has no right even to exist.”

Syria is recognized by the United Nations. It is representative of 23 million Syrians. You aren’t. The puppets of the West aren’t. Assad is.

“The Syrian government should be fought, dismantled and its key figure tried and those with blood on their hands executed according to the law.”

You dodged the question. It makes you uncomfortable. You know terrorism is wrong and you know your al-Nusra “friends” are terrorists.

I say to you that the FSA terrorists should all be eradicated and that anyone who shelters them should receive the same. Traitors during war deserve a bullet.

“It was delegitimized when it opened fire on the people it was supposed to serve. It is a militia that call itself a government.”

This babbling is like the terrorists proclaiming a caliphate. It is meaningless. Armed terrorists shot both civilians and soldiers from the very first protests.

You will never see Syria again Tara. I am certain you’d be arrested if you entered the country and tossed deep in a dark hole.

January 14th, 2013, 5:20 pm


revenire said:

“Those ,who are relatives of Assad thugs,who were able to flee to other countries ,will be hunted,don’t you ever think that you can hide anywhere.”

Terrorist threats right here on this forum.

January 14th, 2013, 5:21 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

Another prediction by Zoozoo
“the North of Syria may not remain for long in the hands of the rebels”

His previous predictions failed miserably, he said Taftanaz airport will not fall to the rebels and it did, and he predicted the FSA will disappear ,and it is as strong as ever.

January 14th, 2013, 5:22 pm


Citizen said:

Sorry Zoo
I like to know from Mr/Ms Gufran Is there a term (tired) in any army in the world!
Syrian Arab army has not mission to secure the borders of neighboring west play thimble countries such as Gendarme! Every country knows their duties and responsibilities and mistake in this case is not allowed!!!!

January 14th, 2013, 5:27 pm


revenire said:

MAJEDKHALDOUN Taftanaz? Read Al Jazeera – your precious terrorists are gone from the base now.

January 14th, 2013, 5:38 pm


ann said:

Any word on those high ranking french officer taken prisoners in Daraya – Damascus?


January 14th, 2013, 5:52 pm


Tara said:


“You will never see Syria again Tara. I am certain you’d be arrested if you entered the country and tossed deep in a dark hole.”

You think?

Ah…you make me smile.

January 14th, 2013, 5:57 pm


ghufran said:

“I agree that those who has blood on their hand must be killed, this could mean over 100,000 Assad thugs will be killed,that means it is war to the end,no matter how long it will take.
Those ,who are relatives of Assad thugs,who were able to flee to other countries ,will be hunted,don’t you ever think that you can hide anywhere”
(that was by a blood-thirsty poster on this blog)
Here is another:
قال رئيس أركان القيادة المشتركة لميليشيا الحر العميد سليم إدريس، الاثنين ١٥/١/٢٠١٣، إن “جميع الإيرانيين المتواجدين على أرض سورية أمامهم 24 ساعة فقط لمغادرتها، وإلا فإن الجيش الحر غير مسؤول عن حياتهم”.
Any question about the true nature of some rebel supporters and whether this uprising is on the wrong track or not?

January 14th, 2013, 6:13 pm


Syrian said:

I’m posting this before certain someone post the regime supporters version
ليلة امس كنا على موعد مع الثأر ، الثأر لمئات الشهداء ولسيدهم حمزة الخطيب ، عدة كتائب ليس من بينها النصرة . اقتحمت مساكن صيدا حيث يسكن الموت والحقد والاجرام فكان لا بد من الانتقام ، فتم تطهيرها وقتل الكثير واسر 25 ببن ضابط وعنصر

عندما علم النظام بان الجنود تم اسرهم لاستبدالهم بالمعتقلين وليس لقتلهم جن جنونه واخذ يختطف النساء والطالبات على الحواجز
باصات النقل بمن فيها يحتجزها

انتقى النساء لتحرير ضباطه ولكي يقطع الطريق على نجاح عملية تبادلهم باسرى ثوار

من بين من اسر من ضباط المساكن هناك 3 نساء

تم التبادل وقضي الامر

Anyhow here the regime supporters version

مساكن الحرس الجمهوري
46 minutes ago ·
درعـــــا|| خاص مساكن الحرس الجمهوري||

الليلة الماضية قامت بعض المجموعات الارهابية بالهجوم على مساكن صيدا وحرقوا بعض المنازل وقاموا بخطف 9 نساء من المساكن وصباح اليوم قام البعض من أهالي المخطوفين بخطف بعض النسوة من عائلات المسلحين وتمت المبادلة بنجاح

January 14th, 2013, 6:22 pm


Tara said:


Do you think I should be arrested if I go to Syria?

January 14th, 2013, 6:29 pm


ann said:

France launches airstrikes in Mali to ease intervention – 14 January, 2013

“Francois Hollande has been one of the most provocative forces in the Syrian conflict, he’s recognized the FSA, heeded the opposition of Syrian National Council, he’s taken a very aggressive line in trying to topple the Syrian government, and he doesn’t seem to mind that he’s backing Islamic militants in Syria. And yet he’s making out that this is the biggest disaster if Islamic militants come to power in Mali. So I think French people and people around the world will look at this and say: the hypocrisy is absolutely glaring”

France has engaged airstrikes in Mali to clear the way for an intervention force concentrating on the capital. Despite promises that military campaign in Mali will be a short one, there are fears that Paris has got into a lengthy conflict.

On the fourth day of the French military incursion the armed forces widened their bombing campaign to encompass central Mali, to target new threats. French Defense Minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian said that Islamist rebels had seized the town of Diabaly in central Mali on Monday, overcoming the Malian government forces stationed there.

France’s Rafale fighters bombed out Islamists’ strongholds in the north near the region’s main city of Gao on Sunday, causing the militants to flee, reports AFP. The French Air Force also eliminated arms stockpiles and fuel reserves belonging to Al-Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine (Defenders of Faith), MUJWA and AQIM militant groups and attacked extremists’ bases on the border with Mauritania using 250kg bombs.

The office of French President Francois Hollande announced that cabinet is holding a meeting on Monday morning on the Mali crisis. The French mission in the UN has informed that the UN Security Council will also discuss the situation in Mali later on Monday.

Separately, the EU stated that it intends to accelerate preparations to send in military trainers to strengthen the Malian army. At the same time, spokesperson Michael Mann told press that the EU had no intention of assigning the military trainers a combat role when they arrive in Mali towards the end of February.

French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius has assured that Islamists in Mali have already been “stopped” and “taking care” of terrorist groups in the country is “a question of weeks.” He also informed that the assault on Islamist compounds on Sunday has become possible as Algeria finally opened its aerospace to French Air Force operations despite previously opposing French interference into Mali’s affairs.

Still, the French authorities have acknowledged that encountered Islamist extremists in Mali are well-trained and armed with advanced weapons, something that has not been expected. On Saturday the militants wounded a helicopter pilot who later died in hospital, becoming France’s only confirmed combat fatality to the moment.

France has still not forgotten its “great colonial past” in Africa and Asia and the operation in Mali, a former French colony (1892-1960), is yet another proof to that fact, told RT political writer and journalist Barry Lando. He said France will be stuck in the operation for longer than it expects and Paris will after all have to negotiate with the rebels.

“The French do not know what their objectives [in Mali] are, how long it is going to go on,” claims Lando. The journalist points out that northern Mali is comparable to the size of France itself, questioning “a few hundred” French troops’ capability to track down the Islamists on such a vast territory that the militants call home and know all too well.

“It is a potentially huge involvement, a very long task. In the end what you are going to do is to negotiate with these people, this is the only way out and I think this is how it is going to end,” predicted Lando.

Hollande’s ‘big mistake’

With French troops prepared for what many presumed to be a short conflict, critics say France has become embroiled in a much longer war.

The French-Malian offensive will last for months at best, and it will certainly not help the job crisis back in France, UK-based journalist and broadcaster Neil Clark told RT.

“I can’t see how getting involved in an invasion of Mali or fighting rebels in Mali is going to help the situation [in France]. And I think if Hollande does believe that his popularity rates, which are incredibly low, are going to be boosted by this, I think he’s made a very big mistake,” Clark said, adding that toppling Colonel Kaddafi did not help Sarkozy to get reelected either.

Not only is Hollande “extremely unpopular” in France, he’s also making the matters worse by taking up apparently contradictory foreign policies, the journalist argued.

“Francois Hollande has been one of the most provocative forces in the Syrian conflict, he’s recognized the FSA, heeded the opposition of Syrian National Council, he’s taken a very aggressive line in trying to topple the Syrian government, and he doesn’t seem to mind that he’s backing Islamic militants in Syria. And yet he’s making out that this is the biggest disaster if Islamic militants come to power in Mali. So I think French people and people around the world will look at this and say: the hypocrisy is absolutely glaring,” Clark said.

Clark warned there’s no way Hollande is going to gain popularity from this conflict, as there’s also great danger of a heightened terrorist threat following the offensive in Mali.


January 14th, 2013, 6:31 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

There are stupid idiots who don’t like for justice to prevail, one of them believes that he can kill and get away with his crimes, he should be the first to face justice.
Those who don’t believe in freedom,they don’t deserve freedom

January 14th, 2013, 6:31 pm


revenire said:

Tara of course you should be arrested. You’re a terrorist supporter. We made that crystal clear for our viewers today.

MAJEDKHALDOUN who should be killed? Me?

January 14th, 2013, 6:42 pm


Tara said:


I am interested in knowing Zoo’s opinion.

January 14th, 2013, 6:48 pm


ann said:

Loud explosion rattles Syrian capital overnight – 2013-01-15

DAMASCUS, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) — A loud explosion rattled Syrian capital Damascus’ district of Muhajireen overnight Monday, causing windows to implode and prompting members of the security forces to fan out and cut off nearby roads as a precautionary measure, activists and media reports said.

The cause of the big blast at the Shoura area in Muhajireen has not been immediately figured out, but reports said it is most likely a shell bomb. The reports stopped short of giving information about any possible casualties.


January 14th, 2013, 6:55 pm


Syrian said:

One shabih at a time
قام مجاهدي الجيش الحر بنصب كمين على طريق / دمشق – ديرالزور / وقتل العميد احمدحسين العلي رئيس فرع الأشارة في .

January 14th, 2013, 7:14 pm


ann said:

Syria’s banking sector waning after terror blows – 2013-01-15

DAMASCUS, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) — The Syrian banking sector has etched losses worth hundreds of millions of Syrian pounds from a series of terrorist attacks, armed robberies, economic sanctions, vandalism and the consequences of the current pitfalls in the country.

The state-run Al-Thawra newspaper said Monday that terrorism has dealt painful blows to the banking sector, warning that the sector’s performance is “diminishing.”

The paper reported several armed robberies on real estate funds, adding that seven branches of the bank of credit are no longer under control.

It said that Syria’s banks were, prior to the turmoil, the most active sector in the country, claiming that for that reason they have been targeted and were subject to burglary, theft and vandalism.

Several banks have stopped all kinds of lending and credit as a precautionary measure for any emergency that might stem from continuing lending operations.

This has further increased the pressure on the citizens and reduced the development pace of the banking activities that had used to make in various services and operations, including loans.

The Director General of the Industrial Bank Anis Al-Marawi said “The liquidity of bank does not allow it to give loans.”

He told the Tishrin newspaper that “The liquidity currently available at the bank is no more than 14 percent, while the minimum required for the possibility of lending is not less than 30 percent.”

Many countries have showered Syria with non-stop economic sanctions to throttle the Syrian government and speed up its collapse. The banking sector was still the hardest hit by those sanctions despite the government’s hectic efforts to keep it vital.

Observers believe that attacks on banks have notably swelled and losses increased.

Bankers said that the Popular Credit Bank, the oldest and most prestigious bank in offering banking services for people, especially the low-paid, had enormously contributed to revitalizing the national economy and promoting local industries by providing the necessary liquidity to market those products, advancing thus the process of economic and social development in the country.

However, reports said that three of its staff have been killed and a fourth kidnapped, adding that a number of its branches in various provinces have been attacked and vandalized, and part of their assets stolen.

The reports estimated damages and robberies at more than 30 million Syrian pounds (some 420,000 U.S. dollars).

Sources at the Credit Bank said that a number of buildings and facilities of the bank had been attacked and reported several cases of burglaries.

Abed Fadhliya, general manager of the Real Estate Bank, told local media that several branches of the bank had been also robbed, and that many cars were stolen and many ATMs damaged.

He indicated that the bank’s branch in the city of al-Nabek in Damascus’ outskirts had been subjected to an armed robbery by terrorist groups that stole more than 41 million pounds (about 580, 000 dollars), adding that another armed group held up a car that fed ATMs in the Bab Sharqi neighborhood in Damascus, and robbed 9. 5 million pounds (some 130,000 dollars).

Ibrahim Zidan, general manager of the Agricultural Cooperative Bank, also reported big losses and damages at the bank’s branches owing to terrorist acts nationwide.

He said terrorists stole more than 136 million pounds (about 1. 92 million dollars) and reported losses of over 270 million pounds (3.8 million dollars).

Ahmed Diab, general manager of the Commercial Bank of Syria, told local media that two of the bank’s employees had been killed by terrorist groups, and estimated the total value of damage caused by terrorist attacks at more than 500 million pounds (some 7.1 million dollars).


January 14th, 2013, 7:40 pm


ann said:

Sen. Abourezk criticizes U.S. relationship to Israeli lobbyists during international forum – January 14, 2013

Former South Dakota Sen. James Abourezk headlined as the keynote speaker for a public forum on the state of affairs in the Middle East at the University of South Dakota Jan.14.

Abourezk offered his opinions on a variety of topics, including the United States’ relationship with Israel, the ongoing civil war in Syria and President Barack Obama’s recent nomination of former Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel for Secretary of Defense.

The former senator spoke before a crowd in Farber Hall, where he said he did not agree with the federal government’s decision to support the Syrian rebels attempting to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. He does not believe the government situation will improve from its current status.

“The reason we are helping Syria is because we want to break the alliance between Syria and Iran, because Israel wants it broken,” Abourezk said. “If Israel was not involved, we would not be helping the rebels.”

Abourezk expanded on his criticism of Israel’s relationship with the U.S., and said Israel dictates much of America’s foreign policy in the Middle East.

“It’s a moral dilemma to continue to support Israel when they occupy (the Gaza Strip) when we wouldn’t support anyone else doing such an oppression,” Abourezk said.

He said he believes U.S. politicians are too intimated to stand against Israel on any issue.

“The Israeli government has a lobby in Washington, D.C. that frightens almost every politician except for a few,” Abourezk said. “This has to do with the amount of money being raised by Israel for U.S. politicians. If a candidate says anything of opposition in regards to Israel, they (the Israeli lobbyists) will give the money to the opponent.”

Abourezk said he supports Chuck Hagel’s nomination for Secretary of Defense. In the past, Hagel expressed his reservation about going to war with Iran and has been criticized for not supporting Israel enough.

“It’s the best thing that has ever happened (on Hagel’s nomination). He’s an honest man, smart guy. I don’t think he’ll be afraid of anybody,” Abourezk said. “He (Hagel) really won me over when he said ‘I’m a Nebraska senator, not an Israeli senator.’”

Abourezk, who became the first Arab-American to serve in the U.S. Senate in 1973, has maintained interest in Middle Eastern affairs since his departure from politics and holds relationships with several leaders in the region.

January 14th, 2013, 7:53 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:


I wonder if Ann knows where South Dakota is. And that no one cares what goes on there…

You’re an ignorant woman, Ann. You need to get out and about. Living in Bulgaria in a Gypsy camp must be depressing…

January 14th, 2013, 8:14 pm


ghufran said:

According to one source,some of the iranian hostages have connections with IRG, but that also means that most do not:

garban, a website that monitors Iran’s conservatives and their online activities, reported that at least seven guards commanders were among the released prisoners. “Abedin Khoram, the [current] commander of the Revolutionary Guards’ division in Orumieh … is among those released who have returned to Iran,” it reported.
The website names a number of other people linked to the elite force who are either current of former members. Some of the identities are apparently exposed inadvertently when faces are revealed in welcoming ceremonies held in their hometown or in reports on local news websites.

January 14th, 2013, 9:22 pm


Johannes de Silentio said:

January 14th, 2013, 9:32 pm


ghufran said:

This girl is Syria’s face today:
(this is a repost, I think every reader should see this video at least once)

January 14th, 2013, 9:50 pm


Majedkhaldoun said:

وردتنا معلومات مؤكدة ان طاقم السفارة الروسية بدمشق سيغادر دمشق يوم 23 هذا الشهر بشكل نهائي .
ويقومون كما اوردنا في خبر سابق باجلاء كافة الرعاية الروس قبل هذا التاريخ عن طريق مطار بيروت ….. حيث سبدأ احضار طائرات نقل ركاب كبيرة اعتبارا من الغد .
وطلب من جميع الرعاية الروس التوجه الى بيروت ليتم نقلهم خلال 48 ساعة

January 14th, 2013, 10:01 pm


Observer said:

Here is what Mikdad is saying to the Iranin Alalam news channel
أضاف المقداد في تصريح للعالم: لم تبق هناك جامعة عربية وانما هناك جماعة من اللصوص والمارقين والدكتاتوريين وكافة أشكال الصفات السيئة التي يتميز بها الوضع العربي الراهن.
وأوضح ان المبادرة التي أطلقها الرئيس الاسد تقول بوقف اطلاق النار وأنه يجب ألا يختلف أحد مع سوريا في هذا المسعى إلا اذا كان لايريد وقف اطلاق النار من قبل الجماعات المسلحة ومن يدعمهم من دول الخليج، مضيفا: نحن مع الحل السياسي للأزمة وهذا هو جوهر الخطاب اذي القاه الرئيس بشار الاسد.
من جهة أخرى شهدت مدينة ادلب (شمال غربي سوريا) تظاهرة حاشدة تأييدا للجيش والرئيس بشار الاسد، مؤكدين ثقتهم ودعمهم للجيش السوري في مهمته لإعادة الأمان والاستقرار إلى مختلف أرجاء سورية.
ورفع المشاركون لافتات تحل شعارات تدعو المعارضة للحوار وتؤكد على تمسكهم بوحدتهم الوطنية واستنكارهم لمواقف الأطراف الاقليمية واستمرارها بدعم المجموعات الإرهابية المسلحة ومدها بالمال والسلاح.
وأما ميدانيا فقد نجح الجيش السوري في تنظيف منطقتي طيبة الامام وموري في ريف حماة من الجماعات المسلحة التي حاولت الادعاء بالسيطرة على مدينة حماه.
واكد مراسل قناة العالم المتواجد في حماه ان الجيش السوري يخوض معارك شرسة ضد الجماعات المسلحة من اجل اعادة الاستقرار الى بقية مناطق هذه المدينة.
وفي سياق متصل دمر الجيش السوري في ريف ادلب مقرا للمسلحين في بلدة تفتناز ما أسفر عن مقتل العشرات وقيادي من جبهة النصرة كما تم تدمير مركز اعلامي يحتوي على اجهزة بث حديثة في بلدة بنش بريف ادلب.

He calls the Arab League a place for degenerates and for thieves and for dictators:

How on earth does he have the gall to call the others dictators? Of course he sees the kings and prethidents all around as degenerate and dictatorial but for God’s sake where does he live in Sweden?

Also we see in this news a repetition of SANA news clearly an indication that the SAA is winning right and left ( heheheh )

Now the prime minister of Thyria is going to Teheran, I wonder why? Troops? Gold? Oil? Missiles?
Not true he is going for carpets and pistachios


January 14th, 2013, 10:05 pm


ann said:

Q & A with hypocrite Al-Qaeda mullah William Hague 8)

UK foreign secretary defends stance on Africa, Middle East conflicts – 15/01/2013

Hague was asked during the session hosted by the Fairfax-owned Stuff news website why his government was “supporting al-Qaeda backed troops in Syria, while EU troops are fighting al-Qaeda backed troops in Mali?”

WELLINGTON, Jan. 15 — Visiting United Kingdom Foreign Secretary William Hague on Tuesday defended his government’s positions in conflicts in Syria and Mali during a written question and answer session with members of the New Zealand public.

Hague was asked during the session hosted by the Fairfax-owned Stuff news website why his government was “supporting al-Qaeda backed troops in Syria, while EU troops are fighting al-Qaeda backed troops in Mali?”

Hague replied that “in Mali what we are setting out to do is to support the legitimate government of Mali, who are faced with an insurgency, that is a danger to the people to Mali and surrounding countries.”

“The government of Mali wants to arrive at political solution, but needs our help in an emergency,” said Hague.

“By contrast the regime in Syria has refused all reasonable political solutions and we are supporting huge numbers of people who simply want freedom and dignity for their country and themselves. We do not support extremists in Syria or Mali.”

In reply to another question about whether the British government was considering arming rebels in Syria, Hague said his government did not exclude any options in Syria, “since so many people are dying.”

“Our efforts are directed at a peaceful political solution. We are sending some practical help to opposition groups, but not arms, and we have taken no decision to change that, but we do want the flexibility to change that if necessary,” said Hague.


January 14th, 2013, 10:08 pm


Observer said:

Majed what are your sources please?

Rumors are just that.

January 14th, 2013, 10:16 pm


zoo said:

102. Tara said:

“Is the current prez of Mali really democratic and secular ?”

This prez Traore has not been elected, he has been chosen as the interim prez of a transitional government after a military coup by Malian soldiers in March 2012 kicked out the previous prez. The junta that made the coup accepted a transitional prez to stop the sanctions imposed on the country by the African Union (The arab league of Africa).
Who the previous president Toure “democratically” elected?
I don’t know but the results of his election in 2007 was rejected as flawed by many of the opposition in Mali but recognized as fair by the Foreign countries.
He was finishing his second mandate in March 2012 but he resigned after the coup
After the coup and the creation of the transitional governement, troubles continued and more divisions appeared in the country among frustrated ethnical and religious groups that have their own agenda ( separation, islamist etc..).

Read that

and you will see that Mali is much more complicated than Syria (like most post-colonial countries that the West fabricated to suit their interests)

The rebels are a mix of separatists, ethnical, religious groups etc.. who obviously reject a dialog and prefer to reach their goals through violence.

Sounds familiar?

January 14th, 2013, 10:18 pm


ann said:

Turkish militants fighting in Syria: Report – Sun Jan 13, 2013

Thousands of Turkish militants have reportedly crossed into the crisis-hit Syria and are now fighting against the government of President Bashar al-Assad

According to a report by Turkish radio Kuresel Haber, militants from Turkey, including Turks and Kurds, are among the top non-Arab militants operating in Syria.

It also said that many of the terrorist snipers in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo are Turkish nationals, adding that militants from the al-Qaeda linked al-Nusra Front and other militant groups have turned a number of residential buildings in the city into their bases.

The report also added that militant groups in Aleppo have been divided into two, taking turns fighting against the Syrian army which has resulted in the continuation of clashes in the restive city around the clock.


January 14th, 2013, 10:20 pm


zoo said:

@137 Majie

“His previous predictions failed miserably, he said Taftanaz airport will not fall to the rebels and it did,”

I don’ remember having said that. I would be surprised if I did as I never predicted outcome of battles. Yet if I did, and to prove you are not a liar, please provide me with my post where I ‘predict’ that.

I still say that the FSA will collapse and I stand on my ‘prediction’

January 14th, 2013, 10:26 pm


zoo said:

Syria: Meddling Thani Royals of Qatar Grow Desperate as Russia Hangs Tough, Rebels Loose Key Damascus Suburb

Webster G. Tarpley, Ph.D.
January 14, 2013

[download video] [download audio]

An analyst says the fact that Russia has stood firmly against the US drive to remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power has made Washington unable in imposing its will regarding the issue.

The comment comes as Moscow’s call for taking into account Assad’s three-step plan comes in the face of opposition from the United States and Britain, who dismissed the initiative and insisted that Assad should stand down.

On Friday, UN-Arab League Special Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi wrapped up talks in Geneva with US and Russian representatives, during which he again rejected all calls for a military solution to the Syria crisis.

“We stressed again that in our view, there was no military solution to this conflict,” Brahimi said on Friday after meetings with US Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov at the United Nations European headquarters.

Press TV has conducted an interview with author and historian Webster Griffin Tarpley from Washington to further discuss the issue.

What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview.

Press TV: Dr. it seems that the war on Syria is being discussed more openly as it was with Qatar, Israel literally speaking of waging an all out war. Why not respect and give dialogue a chance?

Tarpley: Well, of course you’re dealing with a planned destabilization and the plan is to destroy Syria. This proposal comes from the Thani family, the rulers of Qatar; they are of course an oppressive dynasty of absolute monarchs that’s in emirate after all.

If any place in the Middle East needs a revolution its Qatar and of course what he’s proposing is that other people will go and get killed because Qatar does not have any forces that could carry this out and when he says Arabs this is also somewhat puzzling because he is really talking about Turkey I’m afraid which would mean that it wouldn’t be Arabs though it is a massive double plot interception.

I think he’s responding to two things: first of all Russia. Russia has been hanging tough. We just had the meeting of Brahimi the UN mediator with [Russian Deputy foreign minister Mikhail] Bogdanov of the Russian foreign ministry and [US Undersecretary of State William] Burns of the US state department and Russia did not cave in; the US was pressing to get the departure of Assad as a precondition to anything else and that has been rejected so the big push to try to break the will of Russia has failed and that’s a plus.

Brahimi of course also condemned by Syria as being flagrantly biased. That would be useful if Russia would come out and say that Brahimi is flagrantly biased. Now on the ground though what you are hearing about here is that rebels have taken the Taftanaz military airport in the North.

The terrorist al-Nusra, al-Qaeda, the al-Qaeda army has seized this military airport but less attention is going to a more important engagement than I can see which is that the Syrian Arab army has retaken Daraya which is the key to a larger and more important military base in the outskirts of Damascus which is very close to the government ministry and the presidential palace.

So if it’s an exchange of military bases the Syrian army has definitely won this and we are also getting reports that there was a large concentration of mass al-Nusra terrorists in Daraya and that they may have fared very poorly in the last days of the engagement. That also raises the question how long can these terrorists go on?

That is they’re drawing on a finite pool, the attrition rates among the terrorists are very high. We’re told that Tunisians are now being brought in massively but at a certain point they’re going to run out of terrorists and at that point they’d be begging; they’d be in big trouble.

Press TV: Of course you spoke of Turkey as well. Just how has Turkey summed up the costs and benefits of its benefits of its involvement in this scenario?

Tarpley: They’re far beyond any irrational calculation I tried to stress. It all started with Obama on the phone whispering sweet nothings into the ear of Erdogan and now Erdogan has bet his entire prestige and I’m afraid [Turkish] foreign minister Davutoglu also. So they’ve made this commitment and they feel that if they can’t go all the way that that will be a fatal blow to their political prospects which it may well be.

As we are fighting here in the United States with Afghanistan getting out of this engagement is the hardest part and that is when the danger to the country that’s been attacking is the greatest so Erdogan was learning that painful lesson but nevertheless sane forces in Turkey should say stop this now this is bad for Turkey.


January 14th, 2013, 10:32 pm


Ghufran said:

I call upon all of you who have the resources to adopt a Syrian orphan either by bringing him/ her to live with your family or paying for the orphan’s expenses while the child stays in the middle east. The truth is that not all of us are responsible for Syria’s war but all of us are responsible for trying to reduce its effect in any way we can, so help me God.

January 14th, 2013, 10:34 pm


Syrian said:

So the FSA was right all along, those were not pligrimes but a very high revelutionery Guard officers, so if anyone bringing foreign fighters to Syria it is Bashar

IRGC Shows Its (True) Hand in Syria
“By learning the positions of IRGC personnel operating in Syria, however, we can draw at least three important conclusions: first, the IRGC is deploying active duty combat commanders to Syria; second, the Quds Force is drawing from IRGC-GF personnel, indicating that they seek to draw on the Ground Forces’ training and experience conducting internal security and conventional or counter-insurgent operations; finally, several of the IRGC-GF personnel deployed to Syria hail from provincial units that face tribal and ethnic unrest (East Azerbaijan, Khouzestan, and Fars), further indicating that the Quds Force has tapped specific elements of the IRGC-GF for their unique experience in combating internal uprisings. The presence of three of the IRGC Ground Forces’ senior-most commanders at the highly symbolic homecoming of the forty-eight, further signifies the IRGC-GF’s support for Iran’s efforts in Syria. At a minimum, after this event Iran will find it much more difficult to deny the IRGC’s active role in supporting Assad in a conflict that, to date, has claimed the lives of more than 60,000.[xxv] ”

January 14th, 2013, 10:38 pm


ann said:

French support Islamists in Syria, bombs them in Mali – Monday, 14 January 2013

French military forces on Monday widened their bombing campaign against Islamic extremists occupying northern Mali, launching airstrikes for the first time in central Mali to combat a new threat as the four-day-old offensive continued to grow.

Early Monday, an intelligence agent confirmed that shots rang out near the Diabaly military camp in what is still nominally government-held territory and that soon after, jets were heard overhead, followed by explosions. The agent insisted on anonymity because he is not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

A Malian commander in the nearby town of Niono said the bombardments did not stop the Islamist fighters and that they occupied Alatona, and on Monday, they succeeded in reaching the north-south road which connects Diabaly to Segou, the administrative capital of central Mali.

By sweeping in from the west the al-Qaida-linked insurgents are now only 400 kilometers (250 miles) from Mali’s capital, Bamako. Before France sent its forces in on Friday to stop a rebel advance, the closest known spot the Islamists were to the capital was 680 kilometers (420 miles) away, though they might have infiltrated closer than that.

Fighter jets late Sunday dropped bombs in the central rice-growing region of Alatona after a rebel convoy was spotted 40 kilometers (24 miles) southeast of Diabaly, until recently the site of a major, U.S.-funded Millenium Challenger Corporation project. The rebels, said a Malian commander in the nearby town of Niono, were trying to reach Diabaly, home to an important Malian military base.


January 14th, 2013, 10:41 pm


omen said:

what is the implication being made here?

rose: Spoke to 1 of the detainees released in X area in #Syria swap, I can’t write what she said because whatever I write doesn’t do justice..[1]

rose: 1. Many of those released by regime in swap were ones who weren’t detained for revolution reasons/Alawites. Work it out yourselves[4] Syria

rose: 2. She said girls detained/released before her r guilty of not sharing their experiences to warn other Syria girls to shut up/stay home[5]

sunny: “Girls detained in prisons in Homs were sexually violated. We in Damascus were only harassed” ex detained girl reporting from Syria

besides the expected sectarian disparity, is there also class bias being factored here? are people from well off families being spared abuse? while the poor are savaged? (i say people because one of the reports pointed out more men than women were being raped.)

January 14th, 2013, 10:48 pm


ann said:

France Displays Unhinged Hypocrisy as Bombs Fall on Mali: Recolonization of Africa – Mon, Jan 14th, 2013

A deluge of articles have been quickly put into circulation defending France’s military intervention in the African nation of Mali.

TIME’s article, “The Crisis in Mali: Will French Intervention Stop the Islamist Advance?” decides that old tricks are the best tricks, and elects the tiresome “War on Terror” narrative.

TIME claims the intervention seeks to stop “Islamist” terrorists from overrunning both Africa and all of Europe. Specifically, the article states:

“…there is a (probably well-founded) fear in France that a radical Islamist Mali threatens France most of all, since most of the Islamists are French speakers and many have relatives in France. (Intelligence sources in Paris have told TIME that they’ve identified aspiring jihadis leaving France for northern Mali to train and fight.) Al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), one of the three groups that make up the Malian Islamist alliance and which provides much of the leadership, has also designated France — the representative of Western power in the region — as a prime target for attack.”

What TIME elects not to tell readers is that Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) is closely allied to the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG whom France intervened on behalf of during NATO’s 2011 proxy-invasion of Libya – providing weapons, training, special forces and even aircraft to support them in the overthrow of Libya’s government.

As far back as August of 2011, Bruce Riedel out of the corporate-financier funded think-tank, the Brookings Institution, wrote “Algeria will be next to fall,” where he gleefully predicted success in Libya would embolden radical elements in Algeria, in particular AQIM. Between extremist violence and the prospect of French airstrikes, Riedel hoped to see the fall of the Algerian government. Ironically Riedel noted:

Algeria has expressed particular concern that the unrest in Libya could lead to the development of a major safe haven and sanctuary for al-Qaeda and other extremist jihadis.

And thanks to NATO, that is exactly what Libya has become – a Western sponsored sanctuary for Al-Qaeda. AQIM’s headway in northern Mali and now French involvement will see the conflict inevitably spill over into Algeria.

It should be noted that Riedel is a co-author of “Which Path to Persia?” which openly conspires to arm yet another US State Department-listed terrorist organization (list as #28), the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK) to wreak havoc across Iran and help collapse the government there – illustrating a pattern of using clearly terroristic organizations, even those listed as so by the US State Department, to carry out US foreign policy.

Geopolitical analyst Pepe Escobar noted a more direct connection between LIFG and AQIM in an Asia Times piece titled, “How al-Qaeda got to rule in Tripoli:”

“Crucially, still in 2007, then al-Qaeda’s number two, Zawahiri, officially announced the merger between the LIFG and al-Qaeda in the Islamic Mahgreb (AQIM). So, for all practical purposes, since then, LIFG/AQIM have been one and the same – and Belhaj was/is its emir. “

“Belhaj,” referring to Hakim Abdul Belhaj, leader of LIFG in Libya, led with NATO support, arms, funding, and diplomatic recognition, the overthrowing of Muammar Qaddafi and has now plunged the nation into unending racist and tribal, genocidal infighting.

This intervention has also seen the rebellion’s epicenter of Benghazi peeling off from Tripoli as a semi-autonomous “Terror-Emirate.”

Belhaj’s latest campaign has shifted to Syria where he was admittedly on the Turkish-Syrian borderpledging weapons, money, and fighters to the so-called “Free Syrian Army,” again, under the auspices of NATO support.

LIFG, which with French arms, cash, and diplomatic support, is now invading northern Syria on behalf of NATO’s attempted regime change there, officially merged with Al Qaeda in 2007 according to the US Army’s West Point Combating Terrorism Center (CTC).

According to the CTC, AQIM and LIFG share not only ideological goals, but strategic and even tactical objectives. The weapons LIFG received most certainly made their way into the hands of AQIM on their way through the porous borders of the Sahara Desert and into northern Mali.

In fact, ABC News reported in their article, “Al Qaeda Terror Group: We ‘Benefit From’ Libyan Weapons,” that:

A leading member of an al Qaeda-affiliated terror group indicated the organization may have acquired some of the thousands of powerful weapons that went missing in the chaos of the Libyan uprising, stoking long-held fears of Western officials.”We have been one of the main beneficiaries of the revolutions in the Arab world,” Mokhtar Belmokhtar, a leader of the north Africa-based al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb [AQIM], told the Mauritanian news agency ANI Wednesday. “As for our benefiting from the [Libyan] weapons, this is a natural thing in these kinds of circumstances.”

It is no coincidence that as the Libyan conflict was drawing to a conclusion, conflict erupted in northern Mali. It is part of a premeditated geopolitical reordering that began with toppling Libya, and since then, using it as a springboard for invading other targeted nations, including Mali, Algeria, and Syria with heavily armed, NATO-funded and aided terrorists.

French involvement may drive AQIM and its affiliates out of northern Mali, but they are almost sure to end up in Algeria, most likely by design.

Algeria was able to balk subversion during the early phases of the US-engineered “Arab Spring” in 2011, but it surely has not escaped the attention of the West who is in the midst of transforming a region stretching from Africa to Beijing and Moscow’s doorsteps – and in a fit of geopolitical schizophrenia – using terrorists both as a casus belli to invade and as an inexhaustible mercenary force to do it.


January 14th, 2013, 11:03 pm


ann said:

Brookings Admits NATO Responsible For Al Qaeda Operations In Syria

Western policy makers admit that NATO’s operations in Libya have played the primary role in emboldening Al Qaeda’s AQIM faction (Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb). The Fortune 500-funded Brookings Institution’s Bruce Riedel in his article, “The New Al Qaeda Menace,” admits that AQIM is now heavily armed thanks to NATO’s intervention in Libya, and that AQIM’s base in Mali, North Africa, serves as a staging ground for terrorist activities across the region

AQIM, like their Libyan counterparts, the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) are both listed by the US State Department as “Foreign Terrorist Organizations.” Likewise, both the UK Home Office (.pdf, listed as GSPC) and the UN recognize both organizations as terrorists.

Despite this, military intervention in Libya was pursued by the West and condoned by the UN with full knowledge that the militants leading so-called “pro-democracy uprisings” were in fact merely the continuation of decades of violent terrorism carried out by Al Qaeda affiliates. The West had full knowledge of this, primarily because it was Western intelligence agencies arming and supporting these militants for the last 30 years, in Libya’s case, while coddling their leaders in Washington and London.

Additionally, the US Army itself meticulously documented foreign terrorists fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan, noting that the highest percentage per capita emanated from Libya’s cities of Benghazi and Darnah, the so-called “cradle” of 2011′s “pro-democracy uprisings” in Libya.

What unfolded was a premeditated lie – where placard waving “activists” overnight turned into battle-hardened heavily armed, tank driving, jet flying militants waging a nationwide battle against Libyan leader, Muammar Qaddafi. In reality, it was the fruition of 30 years of covert support the West has poured into militant groups across the region – support that would not end with the fall of Qaddafi.

LIFG terrorists promptly turned both east to Syria and west to Mali beyond their borders – a logistical matter they had perfected during their operations in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past decade. LIFG commander Abdul Hakim Belhaj, as early as November 2011, arrived on the Turkish-Syrian border to provide cash, weapons, and LIFG terrorist fighters, overseen by Western intelligence along with US funding and arms laundered through Gulf Cooperative Council (GCC) members such as Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Since then Libyan militants have been confirmed to be leading entire brigades of foreign fighters inside Syria.

And as Bruce Riedel of Brookings concedes, these weapons went west to Mali as well. Algeria had feared just such a scenario unfolding with NATO’s intervention in Libya – a fear now fully realized. Ironically, Riedel, in August 2011, had tried to make a case for Algeria being “next to fall” in an article titled literally, “Algeria Will Be Next to Fall.”

A year ago, Riedel attempted to argue that it would be the so-called “Arab Spring” that would spread into Algeria after having taken root in neighboring Libya. He had eluded to, and it has now become abundantly clear, that by “Arab Spring,” Riedel meant, US-backed subversion, and more specifically NATO-armed Al Qaeda-brand militancy and terrorism.

With the US now openly arming, supporting, and literally “cheering” Al Qaeda in Syria, it is clear that the “War on Terror” is an unprecedented geopolitical fraud perpetuated at the cost of millions of lives destroyed and an incalculable social and economic toll. NATO, with full knowledge of the consequences is literally carving out of North Africa and the Middle East, the so-called “Caliphate” Western leaders had held over their impressionable people’s heads as the impetus to perpetually wage global war. Torn from the pages of Orwell’s 1984, an artificial war has been created to carry forward corporate-financier machinations both abroad and domestically. The so-called threat to Western civilization is in fact a foreign legion of Western corporate-financier interests, executing Wall Street and London’s foreign policy on a global scale where and in a manner traditional Western forces cannot.

NATO’s terrorist blitzkrieg across the Arab World will not end in Syria. It will continue, if allowed, into Iran, through the Caucasus Mountains and into Russia, across China’s western borders, and even across Southeast Asia. The price for ignorance, apathy, and complicity in supporting the West’s so-called “War on Terror” will ironically reap all the horrors and then some in reality, that were promised to us if we didn’t fight this “Long War.”

Our support of both the political gambits of our politicians, as well as our daily patronage of the corporate-financier interests driving this agenda have already reaped an unprecedented and still growing regional safe haven for terrorists – and as moderate secular governments continue to be undermined and toppled, we can only imagine the blowback, retaliation, and other consequences as this destructive foreign policy unfolds. To imagine that such meddling will not end up being visited back upon us, even if in the form of a false flag attack dwarfing 9/11, would be folly.


January 14th, 2013, 11:12 pm


revenire said:

Omen shove your stories. The army is going to kill every terrorist in Syria or die trying.

January 14th, 2013, 11:13 pm


ann said:

France and African Nations to Support Mali against Islamists: The Syria Question. By Helmut Joachim Schmidt and Lee Jay Walker – January 14, 2013

France may be right to help Mali during its hour of need but when this is related to Syria, then how can France justify this dual policy of support and chaos?

The nation of France is now intervening militarily in Mali after Islamist terrorists began a fresh move outside of their northern strongholds. Islamist terrorists despise black African Islam in Mali because they have destroyed many internationally famous Islamic buildings in Timbuktu and other places under their control. At the same time the colonial mentality of these Islamist terrorists can be seen by their imposition of Gulf versions of Islam on the people of Mali.

This reality also lays bare the policy of the President of France and other nations in the Western camp which support the destabilization of Syria. After all, the very same Islamist terrorists in Syria are being supported openly by nations like Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Likewise, France and the United Kingdom know full well that on the ground that it is Islamists which are gaining in power but this isn’t stopping their anti-Syrian government actions. However, just like black African Islamic civilization is under threat in Mali the same applies to Syrian civilization because Salafists hate religious pluralism, diversity and other progressive forces. Therefore, while France may be taking the right approach in Mali, this nation should look at why Islamist terrorists have grew in power in northern Mali and why is the same nation in cohorts with unprogressive forces in Syria?

After all, in Mali many Sufi shrines have been destroyed and likewise in Syria many Shia mosques, Christian churches and other holy places have been destroyed. Alawites also reside in fear in Syria and mainstream Sunni Muslim clerics in Syria have been killed by Islamist terrorists. Images have also emerged of Islamists destroying other types of architecture in Mali and Syria respectively. Similarly, many Sufi shrines have been attacked in Libya by the same dark forces. Yet this reality appears to be lost on powerful Western states which are siding with the forces of darkness in Syria.

Once more, regional African nations will take a lead whereby they will fight against the forces of instability and hatred. However, why is it that nations in the Gulf, Turkey and Western powers are supporting instability in Syria and the same forces of hatred? Clearly, regional African states are once more going to involve themselves in trying to stabilize a crisis just like they are doing in Somalia and other nations. Yet, it is clear that Islamist terrorist groups are benefitting in Libya and Syria because of America, France, Qatar, Saudi Arabia,Turkey, the United Kingdom, and other nations in the Gulf.

In Syria outside meddling needs to stop because Islamist terrorists want to turn this nation into “year zero.” They desire to crush the multi-cultural and multi-religious values of Syria in order to impose a draconian version of Islam which emanates from Saudi Arabia. It is time for elites in London, Paris and Washington to note the blowback reality of Afghanistan in the 1980s and 1990s and the same applies to Pakistan which destabilized itself. Similarly, the crisis in Mali stems from the destruction and carnage which was inflicted on Libya.

Therefore, it is essential that a strong Syria remains and for the multi-cultural and multi-religious values of this nation to survive. After all, a weak Syria means chaos, a failed state, the imposition of Islamism and new bases for terrorists to spread their hatred.

France may be right to help Mali during its hour of need but when this is related to Syria, then how can France justify this dual policy of support and chaos?


January 14th, 2013, 11:28 pm


ann said:

France Bombs Mali While Backing Jihad Elsewhere – Monday, 14 January 2013

Despite openly supporting self-styled Jihadist “revolutionaries” seeking an Islamic theocracy in Syria, and Libya before that, the new socialist French government, with help from other Western powers, has also just launched a series of military attacks against Muslim rebels who seized control of northern Mali. The controversial operations, ironically, are being taken under the guise of fighting Islamic extremism. Meanwhile, Islamists in the region have vowed retaliation, saying the French attacks were killing civilians and promising to strike “at the heart of France”

British officials, meanwhile, are already providing logistical support for the French assault, offering cargo planes and more. “What is being done in Mali is in our interests and should support France’s actions,” claimed U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron in an interview with the state-run BBC, adding that there would be no boots on the ground — for now at least.

Like the socialist French government, Cameron tried to make the battle appear to be about Islamic extremists, a shift from previous claims that the fight was about supporting “democracy” or Mali’s supposed territorial integrity. “There is a very dangerous Islamist regime allied to al-Qaeda in control of the north of that country. It was threatening the south of that country and we should support the action that the French have taken,” he claimed. “So we were first out of the blocks, as it were, to say to the French ‘we’ll help you, we’ll work with you and we’ll share what intelligence we have with you and try to help you with what you are doing’.”

The Obama administration also pledged its support. “We stand by our French allies and they can count on U.S. support,” Air Force Maj. Robert Firman in the office of the defense secretary was quoted as saying by Fox News. He said information sharing and logistics would be among the U.S. government’s “contribution” to the war effort. Obama also just admitted that American forces helped the French government carry out a failed raid in Somalia on January 11.

Even as the socialist French government purports to be fighting Islamists, however, analysts have called those justifications absurd. At the same time, France has been among the most vocal supporters of the Islamic extremists waging war on Syria’s secular tyrant, Bashar al-Assad. In Libya, the French government was also key in the “regime change” plot that armed known Islamic terrorists — many were openly affiliated with al-Qaeda — to overthrow the secular autocracy of dictator Muammar Gadhafi. As the UN and French authorities admit, many of the weapons from the Libyan conflict are now in the hands of the same rebels in Mali who supposedly need to be crushed by global military force.

Aside from Syria and Libya, the UN and the French government, with support from the Obama administration, also played a key role in ousting the Christian president of the Ivory Coast and installing a Muslim central banker in his place. Thousands of innocent Christians were slaughtered by UN- and French-backed Islamist militias during the campaign. After seizing power, the new Ivorian “president” promptly began shutting down newspapers critical of his regime while rounding up dissidents. He is now among the chief proponents of an international invasion of Mali, too.


January 14th, 2013, 11:40 pm


omen said:

175. revenire said: shove your stories. The army is going to kill every terrorist in Syria or die trying.

another one of your terrorists:

sunny: A girl detained for 1.5 years at one of Assad prisons for chanting in an anti-Assad demonstration in Syria. She was then 10 years old.

January 15th, 2013, 12:21 am


Syrialover said:

Comments here on the Mali situation are way off target. But there may be some things there that could set a precedent for the Middle East.

• The decision to intervene in Mali comes from the regional group of 15 West African countries, Ecowas. France is responding after months of requests from Ecowas, long delays and extensive international debate.

• Ecowas plans to put thousands of African troops in there to protect the Malian government and assist Mali’s army to retake the north. But the Africans needed financial and logistical support and have been begging the west for help for months. France has finally responded with strategic air strikes, but says it will not be putting troops into ground combat – that will be done by Ecowas African forces.

• France’s actions in Mali are backed by all members of the UN Security Council with a brief “to help restore Mali’s constitutional order and territorial integrity”.

• The armed Islamic extremists in Mali are a washup from the fall of Gaddafi and using arms from there. They hijacked a local tribal revolt (sounds familiar?), and have terrorized and chased out most of the population in northern Mali, wrecking infrastructure and causing food, electricity and water to dry up.

• They are seen as a threat to the whole West African region, and Mali and 14 neighboring African countries are currently acting together with what they view as necessary assistance from France, which is the outside power with the strongest connections to that area.

January 15th, 2013, 12:38 am


revenire said:

Nice story Omen but are you sure she wasn’t like this 11 year old?–syrias-11-year-old-killing-machine/ef5273ee4a9f115f0b326c1031f4840f_vice_670.jpg

Mohammed Afar is 11 years old. The modified AK-47 assault rifle he carries stretches to nearly two-thirds his height.

Over the top of his faded yellow jacket a Free Syrian Army vest holds three extra clips, each full with live ammunition, and a walkie-talkie. An FSA badge sits on one side and a rendering of the Islamic Shahada, in Arabic calligraphy, on the other.

He says he does not miss school or want to stay at home with his mother and two sisters.

“I want to stay as a fighter until Bashar is killed,” he says, referring to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.–syrias-11-year-old-killing-machine

January 15th, 2013, 12:46 am


Johannes de Silentio said:


“Or die trying”

Like the mathdude says: dead opposition soldiers are replaced; dead regime soldiers aren’t.

A Bashar Cartoon:

January 15th, 2013, 1:14 am


omen said:

Complete report on al-Mushrifeh massacre in which 12 people were killed:

The regime’s shabiha thugs and military forces committed a massacre against residents who were traveling to Lebanon after arresting them in al-Mushrifeh area in the western suburbs of Homs. The cars departed from Hama at around 9 a.m. on Monday. The vehicles were a white Kia Optima driven by Zuhair al-Maleeh, and a white Hyundai Sonata driven by Saleem al-Hariri. There were another two cars driving behind them. An hour after they left, all communication with them was lost and their mobile phones were switched off.

Some of their family members received a rumor that they were being held at the National Security branch, which was later proven false.
Yesterday, Tuesday, some of their families were informed that their children’s bodies could be found at the Military Hospital in Homs. After the families went to the hospital and identified the bodies, it was made apparent that most of them were killed with knives. Their bodies were disfigured and mutilated, and some of their hands and legs were cut off.


Details about the manner of death of some of the victims:

Zuhair al-Maleeh: His throat was slit, and large stab wounds were apparent on his hands and feet

Sameer al-Nusair’s son: His shoulder was broken, and there were three non-fatal stab wounds on his neck

Reema al-Basha: Killed with a knife and a gunshot wound
We did not receive complete details about the other victims


As of now, we have confirmed the death of 12 people, the (Christian) family of engineer Sameer al-Nusair, four young men from Kazo neighborhood, a man and his uncle from al_Sharqeyeh neighborhood, and a Homsi man who was a refugee in Kazo.

The fate of the drivers of the other two cars and their passengers are still unknown, and there has been no communication with them. There are reports that the passengers of a number of cars in the same area were kidnapped.

January 15th, 2013, 1:29 am


revenire said:

Omen you’re just another US clown. I’ve never seen so many fake Syrians in my life.

January 15th, 2013, 2:11 am


Johannes de Silentio said:

Alawites are digging their own graves, Omen. They sure won’t be missed.

January 15th, 2013, 2:11 am


Juergen said:

Rape has become ‘significant’ part of Syrian war, says humanitarian group

“No one wants to talk about it, because in a conservative society, it is shameful to talk about it,” said Hiba Alhaji, founder of the Free Syrian Women Organization. “They don’t understand how these ladies are not to blame.”

here is a witness:

Syrian nurse claims she witnessed 16 year old raped and 55 year-old women electrocuted during her arrest:

On Mr Shabih ( the facebook troll I have posted) someone commented: “If someone looks like they’re on steroids … they’re on steroids.”

January 15th, 2013, 2:29 am


Juergen said:

Syria influences children theatre in Saudi Arabia ( I didnt know they have children theatres)

January 15th, 2013, 2:54 am


Juergen said:

this article is a must read

“A salient feature of Iran’s foreign policy is its ability to build influence where least expected. With the ascent to power of Sunni Islamists throughout the region, and Iran’s support of the military campaign in Syria, many have argued that Iran’s regional standing is in decline.”

“The Brotherhood and adherents of Khomeinism share common Islamic views that make them closer to each other than to their fellow Sunnis or Shiites. The Brotherhood deems rulership a religious “asel”, meaning that one’s faith is not complete without pledging allegiance to an imam – unlike the consensus in mainstream Sunni Islam. This is similar to the concept of velayat-e faqih, which holds that a religious jurist has custodianship over the people.”

“It is important to distinguish between the Brotherhood as an organisation and as an ideology. The former is coherent but the latter is loose. The Brotherhood includes Sunni adherents from a wider religious spectrum, from extreme Salafis to moderate clerics, with conflicting views on sectarian issues. According to people I’ve spoken to, the Brotherhood leadership therefore treads carefully in terms of rapprochement with Iran to avoid alienating sectarian forces inside and outside the organisation, but at the same time quietly promotes it.”

“Any alliance between the Iranian regime and the Brotherhood is likely to be more enduring and sustainable than Iran’s alliance with Baathist Syria, for example.”

Read more:

January 15th, 2013, 2:59 am


omen said:

169. Ghufran said: I call upon all of you who have the resources to adopt a Syrian orphan either by bringing him/ her to live with your family or paying for the orphan’s expenses while the child stays in the middle east. The truth is that not all of us are responsible for Syria’s war but all of us are responsible for trying to reduce its effect in any way we can, so help me God.

here is one group:

January 15th, 2013, 3:29 am


Citizen said:

your building is not destroyed yet! damn!
A brief summary of the situation in Syria, Jan. 13

January 15th, 2013, 6:27 am


Hanzala said:

Question for the Alawites, is Bashar al Assad an Alawite or a Sunni Muslim?

Also, do not try to twist your answer saying he is from every religion.

January 15th, 2013, 6:44 am


Tara said:

I see that Zoo is unable to say “of course not” in response to my earlier question.

That makes me very sad..

January 15th, 2013, 7:34 am


Syrialover said:

A dirty, insult-to-humanity liar with his pants blazing on fire: Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad.

January 15th, 2013, 8:15 am


zoo said:

#147 Tara

Sorry, I missed your question among the lengthy posts.

Of course you shouldn’t be arrested. There will have to be an amnesty on people who expressed their rejection for the other party, otherwise a sizeable portion of the Syrians (and most expats) will be in jail.
The people who not only insulted and wished death but who were involved directly in killings or indirectly by funding murders may not feel comfortable when they go back to Syria if the same people they targeted for murder are in power.

I guess this is not your case. Yet, if while one is in Syria, one persists in publicly calling for murder and blood on government officials or other religious and ethnical groups , there is a chance one will be sued for diffamation and instigation to hate crime, as it is the case in most countries in the world.

I guess there would be official opposition parties where you would express your disagreement without resorting to insults, verbal threats or physical violence.

Let’s hope there won’t be a revenge spree on either side, but an effort to reconcile.

January 15th, 2013, 8:34 am


zooz said:

195. Hanzala

Is Obama Lutherian protestant, Calvinist, roman catholic, armenian catholic, assyrian, orthodox..
Is Hollande jewish?

Who cares except narrow minded people?

January 15th, 2013, 8:43 am


zoo said:

The rebels are feeling the direct consequences of rejecting the cease fire plan proposed by Bashar al Assad.
Now the whole media artillery of “massacres, war crimes, killed women and children”, “clusters bombs” has started again.

As the rebels are hiding in populous areas so they can use the civilians as human shields, one more time the innocent civilians are paying the price of the praised “guerilla” strategy of the armed gangs.
While the activists insist rightly or wrongly on the death toll on children and women, they fail to mention the number of armed rebels who were killed.

January 15th, 2013, 8:54 am


zoo said:

Assad can’t be excluded from 2014 vote: Syria minister
by AFP
January 15, 2013

Beirut:President Bashar al-Assad should be allowed to stand in the 2014 election like any other candidate and it is up to the Syrians themselves to decide their future leadership, a senior official has said.”We are opening the way for democracy, or deeper democracy. In a democracy you don’t tell somebody not to run,” said Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Muqdad in an interview with the BBC on Monday.

A plan to end Syria’s civil war, agreed in Geneva in June during talks among global powers and the UN, envisages the establishment of a transitional government but it does not refer to Assad going — a key demand of the opposition.Muqdad’s remarks come after Assad unveiled in a rare speech on January 5 in Damascus his own three-step peace initiative for the strife-torn country.

He offered dialogue with the opposition to end the conflict — but only with elements he deemed acceptable, not rebel-affiliated groups he termed “killers” and “terrorists” manipulated by foreign powers.His plan was rejected outright by the entire opposition as well as by the West, and it was criticised heavily by UN-Arab League peace envoy Brahimi who termed it “perhaps even more sectarian, more one-sided” than previous such initiatives.

In Monday’s interview, Muqdad reiterated Damascus’ long-held view that calls for Assad to quit immediately are foreign-backed and illegitimate. “It is a coup d’etat if we listen what to those armed groups and those elements of Syria are proposing,” said Muqdad.”The president now and many other candidates who may run will go to the people, put their programmes and be elected by the people,” Muqdad told the BBC.”So the ballot box will be the place where the future of the leadership of Syria will be decided.”The United Nations says that more than 60,000 people have died in the Syria conflict which began 22 months ago, on March 15, 2011, with peaceful protests that quickly erupted into deadly violence in the wake of a harsh regime crackdown.

January 15th, 2013, 8:58 am


Syrian said:

The regime planes bomb Aleppo university over 50 students killed!/photo.php?fbid=392661687494372&id=235395973220945&set=a.235630623197480.54109.235395973220945&__user=0

نحن بلمشفى هلأ عدد الشهداء حوالي50شهيد واغلبن طلاب ومحروقة 15سيارة بالعالم يلي فيها..وماضل شي اسمه دوار عمارة .وبعد ضربة الطيارة بدقيقتين اجت قناة الدنيا كيف لحقو مابعرف واليوم اول مرة بيجي الامن علجامعة من الصبح وشادي حلوة اكل قتل

شهادة احد طلاب جامعة حلب

January 15th, 2013, 9:19 am


zoo said:

The Aleppo University is firmly under the army control.
It gives a “clear” idea who may want to bomb it or shell it…

January 15, 2013
An explosion has hit the university in Syria’s northern city of Aleppo, causing casualties.

State television blamed the explosion on “terrorists,” a term officials use to refer to rebels fighting against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

The report did not specify the number of victims.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 15 people were killed and dozens of others injured.

It said it was not immediately clear whether the blast was the result of a bomb explosion or shelling.

Aleppo University is said to be in territory firmly controlled by the army.

Aleppo is Syria’s largest city and has been a major front in the conflict between government troops and rebels since July 2012.

January 15th, 2013, 9:25 am


zoo said:

Russia Closes Aleppo Consulate
© AFP/ Miguel Medina

DAMASCUS, January 15 (RIA Novosti) – The Russian Consulate General in the northwestern Syrian city of Aleppo has suspended operations, a spokesman for the Russian Embassy in Syria reported on Tuesday.

“The operations of the Consulate General in Aleppo have been suspended,” the spokesman said. “Regarding all consular-related issues, contact the consular department of the Russian Embassy in Damascus.”

Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, 340 kilometers (211 miles) north of the capital Damascus, has been the scene of months of vicious fighting between government forces and rebel groups. Most of Aleppo is controlled by the Free Syrian Army, an armed opposition group. The city’s residents are suffering shortages of food and electricity.

Fifteen civilians were killed and dozens injured by two blasts that “shook the area in between the University Residence and the Architecture Building in the southern part of the Aleppo University,” the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported on Facebook on Tuesday. The monitoring body said the cause of the explosions was unclear, but the city has previously been hit by government airstrikes as well as rebel car bombs.

January 15th, 2013, 9:32 am


zoo said:

France needs Arab’s money for its adventure in Mali.
Will Qatar pay for both the French and islamists?

“We — not just the French, but all nations — have to combat terrorism,” Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said during a visit to the United Arab Emirates in the Persian Gulf, announcing that donors would meet later this month, probably in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to discuss financing an offensive against the rebels in Mali, Reuters reported.

“Everybody has to commit to oneself in fighting against terrorism,” Mr. Fabius said. We are pretty confident that the Emirates will go into that direction as well.”
“We — not just the French, but all nations — have to combat terrorism,” Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said during a visit to the United Arab Emirates in the Persian Gulf, announcing that donors would meet later this month, probably in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to discuss financing an offensive against the rebels in Mali, Reuters well.”

January 15th, 2013, 9:42 am


Syrian said:

افادت هيئة الثورة السورية عن ارتفاع عدد القتلى الى 46 بعد قصف لطيران النظام السوري على جامعة حلب.

January 15th, 2013, 9:44 am


zoo said:

The West: We love the ‘good westernized’ moslems, we kill the ‘bad uneducated ‘ ones

The bombing of Mali highlights all the lessons of western intervention

The west African nation becomes the eighth country in the last four years alone where Muslims are killed by the west

January 15th, 2013, 9:49 am


zoo said:

in case Al Assad goes, worse problems looming for Turkey that NATO can’t solve: The Syrian Kurds

Turkey’s troubles with Syria: Answer requires men, not missiles
by Lt. Andrew Self*
15 January 2013

In a post-Assad Syria, or even one in which the regime survives as a hobbled political entity, Turkey must be prepared for the prospect of a larger Kurdish insurgency than they have experienced to date. An armed and independent Syrian Kurdish faction to its south, coupled with an already well-established PKK network and a politically frustrated Kurdish population within Turkey, is the necessary recipe for an insurgency. This is Turkey’s greatest threat, and this threat cannot be dealt with by the use of Patriot missiles.

Instead, Turkey needs to prepare for a prolonged counter-insurgency that will require significantly more infantry and combat arms personnel than are currently present in Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Urfa, Siirt and Mardin provinces. Turkey must take note of America’s successes and failures in Iraq and Afghanistan. There, “boots on the ground” personnel spearheaded by an aggressive infantry and supported by an expansive intelligence apparatus engaging in political and social counter-insurgency activity, rather than explicitly military kinetic operations, proved most success

January 15th, 2013, 9:59 am


revenire said:

Tara in any nation you would be arrested for the crimes you’ve committed. You do so only because you ran away from Syria (or so you say). You do so from your hiding spot in the United States.

If you advocated murdering the president of the United States you’d be arrested. You believe you can do this because you see Assad as a dictator and illegitimate. One could make that argument about many world leaders today and I have heard Internet ravings like this about Putin, Obama, Hollande, etc. Free speech is a right but there are limits in all nations.

I have watched you call for sectarian blood. I have watched you single out Alawites and what you have called “traitorous Sunnis” for revenge – threatening that they will all pay a price for supporting the president. This is a hate crime because of the sectarian nature and it is also a crime. A person can’t go around threatening people because they support their president. You feel safe because you’re on the Internet but let me assure you that you’re not as hidden as you believe.

I have seen you defend Jabhat al-Nusra. They’ve been labeled a terrorist organization by the nation you say you currently reside in. The US added them to their list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations ( If the FBI knew who you were I am pretty sure they’d want to take a look at you closer. You can’t support Jabhat al-Nusra from the US. It is illegal. Jabhat are terrorists according to the United States government. Now I am certain that the US doesn’t like Assad much, or many reasons, but they like Jabhat al-Nusra (Al-Qaeda) even less.

You, like many expats, sit blabbing all day, every day, about Assad – blaming him for everything but he is just an excuse isn’t he? You want the entire nation changed. Well, that won’t happen how you want and if it does happen there will be hundreds of thousands of dead Syrians and the rest of your days on Earth will be haunted.

The opposition fears open elections. They want Assad removed and fear him running in 2014. They know he would be elected. They know that any opposition candidate (and I assume there would be several) would have little chance against Assad. He has the “party machine” – if you will – in place. They also has the support of the majority of Syrians. The opposition knows this. Assad knows the opposition is splintered in a thousand pieces.

Tara you need to change your ways if you want to be accepted as a Syrian again. Many leave their homeland and become traitors. I assure you many, many Syrians see you as a traitor.

January 15th, 2013, 10:02 am


zoo said:

The Aleppo university bombing: An attempt by the rebels to create a media diversion from their debacle in the suburbs of Damascus?

January 15th, 2013, 10:03 am


Tara said:


I am in no mood for futile argument. Your threats do not bother me. You seem to be interested in the interaction more than in what is being said.

I am asked to send Batta and Asma a baby shower gift. Any suggestion?

January 15th, 2013, 10:12 am


revenire said:

Tara, and other terrorist supporters (talking to you Bill Scherk and you Amal Hanano), the US State Department doesn’t mince words below. Al-Nusra IS Al-Qaeda. If you’re in the United States and you issue public statements of support for the al-Nusrah Front terrorists you could very well be arrested under US law (Bill gets out of it because he’s in Vancouver).

Senior Administration Officials on Terrorist Designations of the al-Nusrah Front as an Alias for al-Qaida in Iraq

Special Briefing
Senior Administration Officials
Via Teleconference
Washington, DC
December 11, 2012

MODERATOR: Good morning everyone, and thank you for joining this call this morning. Today, we’re going to have a background call with three senior Administration officials. We have – Senior Administration Official One will be [Senior Administration Official One]. Senior Administration Official Number Two is [Senior Administration Official Two]. And then [Senior Administration Official Three] is our Senior Administration Official Three.

So they’re going to talk about some of the designations and then take a few questions. So we’ll start with our Senior Administration Official Number One, over to you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: Okay. The State Department has formally amended al-Qaida in Iraq as a Foreign Terrorist Organization and Executive Order 13224 designations to include the alias al-Nusrah Front. Al-Qaida in Iraq, or AQI, was first designated by the State Department in October of 2004. By way of background, in 2011, the AQI emir, Abu Du’a, tasked Abu Muhammad al-Jawlani to establish al-Nusrah Front in Syria. Abu Du’a provides strategic guidance to al-Jawlani, al-Nusrah’s leader.

Since November 2011, al-Nusrah Front has claimed hundreds of attacks, nearly 600, in major city centers across Syria in which numerous innocent Syrians have been injured and killed. AQI has dispatched money, people, and materiel from Iraq to Syria over the past year to attack Syrian forces both on its own initiative and at the request of AQI’s facilitation network members in Syria.

Al-Nusrah Front has sought to portray itself as part of a legitimate Syrian opposition, but today’s actions are intended to expose them and make clear that the United States believes that al-Nusrah’s extremist ideology has no role in a post-Assad Syria. Among the consequences of today’s actions is a prohibition against knowingly providing or attempting or conspiring to provide material support or resources to or engaging in transactions with al-Nusrah Front.

It’s important to note that the designation of al-Nusrah Front does not mean we have changed our view regarding Assad as the leader of a state that has been a designated state sponsor of terrorism since 1979. Today, we’ve also sanctioned pro-Assad regime elements, and my colleague from the Treasury Department will speak more specifically to these sanctions and to the designation of two key members of al-Nusrah Front. Over.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL TWO: Good morning. This is [Senior Administration Official Two] from the Treasury Department. Thank you. Today, we have taken a number of actions alongside and in coordination with our colleagues at the State Department in order to continue and intensify our pressure against the Assad regime, its affiliated militias, and to take action against terrorist leaders who are active in Syria.

Since the beginning of the uprising in Syria, we have been working to powerfully and swiftly intensify sanctions against the Assad regime, to isolate the Syrian Government, hasten Assad’s fall, and to encourage those within the Syrian Government to abandon the regime’s campaign of violence. We have also used targeted sanctions to expose and combat the interventions of Iran as well as terrorist groups like Hezbollah which have been actively supporting Assad’s regime.

The actions we took today fall into basically two buckets: actions against two militias that have been perpetrating violence in coordination with and in affiliation with the Assad government, and then actions in concert with the al-Nusrah action that the State Department has announced to target two main leaders of the Nusrah Front. I’ll take those in turn.

Since the beginning of the unrest in Syria, the Shabiha have operated as a direct action arm of the Government of Syria and its security services, with Shabiha units providing support to units from designated security services, such as the Syrian Air Force intelligence and Syrian military intelligence, that have been among the most active in the violence. Ayman Jaber is currently a Shabiha leader responsible for directing Shabiha operations in Latakia, Syria on behalf of the Syrian regime and is working with the Ministry of Defense and other senior regime officials, including Maher al-Assad, to procure weapons for the Shabiha units under his command.

His brother, who we are also designating today, Mohammad Jaber, arranged for the transportation of pro-Syrian regime thugs from the Shabiha to Turkey in order to attack anti-Syrian regime persons there.

The other pro-regime militia that we are sanctioning today is Jaysh al-Sha’bi, which operates throughout Syria and has been particularly active in Damascus and Aleppo where the militia has supplemented Syrian Government forces operations against the opposition. Jaysh al-Sha’bi was created and continues to be funded and maintained with support from Iran and Hezbollah, and it is modeled after the Iranian Basij militia, which has proven so deadly and effective at using violence and intimidation to suppress political dissent in Iraq.

In addition to our actions against the regime proxies, Treasury is targeting Nusrah Front leaders Maysar Ali Musa Abdallah al-Juburi and Anas Hasan Khattab. Al-Juburi is the religious and military commander for the Nusrah Front in eastern Syria. He moved from Mosul, Iraq to Syria in late 2011 with the objectives of transferring al-Qaida’s ideology and techniques to Syria and forming likeminded terrorist groups.

Khattab was involved with the formation of the Nusrah Front for AQI and has communicated with AQI leadership to coordinate the movement of funds and weapons for the Nusrah Front. Khattab also works closely with al-Qaida-linked facilitators to provide logistical support to the Nusrah Front. All of these actions are a part of our ongoing efforts to target actors within Syria working to frustrate the desires of the Syrian people to end the violence and to realize a representative government. We will continue to target the thugs that have worked with the Assad militias, just as we will the terrorists who try to cloak themselves in the flag of the legitimate opposition.

And with that, I’ll turn it over to [Senior Administration Official Three].

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: Thank you very much. The steps that we are announcing today in Washington really are the result of growing American concern about the escalation of violence in Syria.

First of all, let’s be clear: The Syrian regime started this violence by brutalizing what was a peaceful protest movement. We all know that. We all understand that. And the Syrian regime has used aircraft, it has used artillery, and it appears that it has even used missile to attack the Syrian population and to attack what was a peaceful protest movement. And we have considered the Syrian regime to be a State Sponsor of Terrorism since 1979. We’ve taken additional steps against the regime in terms of sanctions and in terms of isolating the Syrian regime and putting pressure on it internationally and economically.

Today’s actions against the Shabiha, against the Jaysh al-Sha’bi – the People’s Army as they call it – against people like Ayman Jaber and Mohammad Jaber are both a recognition of the violence that the regime is inflicting on the Syrian people, and then it also repeats and emphasizes our message that the Syrian regime needs to stop that, and Assad needs to step aside and a political transition needs to begin.

But when we think about that political transition, extremist groups that are denouncing the government and attacking the government, they themselves, as extremists, have no role in that transition and in a future Syria. The protest movement that started out peacefully that I mentioned – it started out peacefully in February and March of 2011 – has always called for a tolerant Syrian society which is free, which respects the human rights of all Syrians equally. That was in the national vision statement that the Syrian opposition published in Cairo on July 3rd, 2012 – that is to say about five months ago, five and half months ago – and in other statements which Syrian opposition figures have announced. But Nusrah, as [Senior Administration Official One] was just talking about, and as [Senior Administration Official Two] was saying, the Nusrah Front is directly linked to al-Qaida in Iraq, and we know what its ideology is.

And we know that the Nusrah Front has denounced the Syrian Opposition Coalition’s founding, that it rejects the vision statement that was issued in Cairo, that I mentioned, of a tolerant society, and insists that instead of elections there must be an Islamic state imposed upon Syria. And the Nusrah Front, extremists like it, have no place in the future of the Syrian society, in a tolerant society. And so we have made clear that Nusrah also is an extremist organization and it has to be isolated and that more moderate forces, more forces that believe in tolerance as a model for Syrian society, they need to carry the work of the political transition forward.

I think I’ll stop there.

MODERATOR: Thank you. At this time, Operator, we’ll be ready to take questions for our three senior Administration officials.

OPERATOR: Ladies and gentlemen, if you wish to ask a question, please press * followed by 1 on your touchtone phone. Once again, for any questions, please press *1 at this time. One moment, please.

And we’ll go to the line of Ilhan Tanir with Turkish Daily. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Thanks so much. Quick couple questions. One of them is: How is the reaction so far from the Syrian – other Syrian opposition groups? As far as we can see, there is a lot of complaining about this decision on Twitter and social networks that – argument is while the U.S. Government has been talking, Nusrah Front is coming here to fight, and basically they are fighting with the Assad regime, and die.

Can you give us what kind of reaction and see if the Nusrah Front is fighting with the Assad regime? I just don’t understand what kind of message is that you mentioned. The message is to Assad regime to leave, but you are labeling his organization as a terrorist organization while they are fighting with the Assad regime. Thank you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: I guess I’ll take my first stab at that. I don’t know if my colleagues want to join in later. I will let the Syrian opposition representatives speak for themselves. I don’t need to speak on their behalf. It’s not proper. What I would say is that the United States and other Friends of the Syrian People have long acknowledged the Syrian people’s right to self-defense and to defend themselves against the brutality of the Syrian regime. There is no question about that, and we have been saying that for many, many months.

However, acknowledging the right of self-defense is not itself a justification for extremism. And I want to underline here that many people in Syria are afraid of extremism. Many people in Syria are not fighting for an extremist cause. Rather, they are fighting to have their dignity respected, they are fighting to have their human rights respected, and they do not want – and the United States and the Friends of Syria do not want one terrorist regime to be replaced by a new extremist model. Rather, it is important that Syrians who believe in tolerance, Syrians who believe in the respect for the human rights of all Syrian citizens be the ones who move the political transition forward.

And so there is no contradiction. Instead, what is important is to understand that extremists fighting the Assad regime are still extremists, and they have no place in the political transition that will come. Bashar al-Assad will depart. If he departs today, it’s better than if he departs tomorrow. There is too much bloodshed. But extremists should not dictate that political transition.

OPERATOR: You do have a question from the line of Michael Gordon with The New York Times. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Yes, this is primarily for [Senior Administration Official Three], but the others can chime in. Could you please explain what practical, tangible effect this edict on the Nusrah Front might have? It stated that it would prohibit American or American entities from providing support. Are there any such Americans who are providing support? And if not, how will this affect those who have been providing support who are probably sympathetic with this group?

And lastly, tomorrow there’ll be a meeting in Morocco of various opposition groups and Friends of Syria. Do any members of this political opposition gathering in Morocco have influence or control over armed opposition elements in Syria today?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: Michael, I’m going to let my colleagues answer the question about the practical and tangible effects because they’re more involved in the immediate implementation of the measures. But on the – with respect to your last question about members of the Syrian opposition who will come to Morocco for the Friends of the Syrian People meeting, what I would say on that is that there are not members of armed groups represented at this meeting that I am aware of.

However, there are people here who definitely coordinate with armed groups, with the Free Syrian Army, and who have regular contact with elements of the Free Syrian Army. That is not to say they are giving instructions to it; they do not. It is not to say that they are telling it what to do or what to say in the international field; they are not. In a sense, the Free Syrian Army is a separate organization from, for example, the Syrian National Council or the Syrian Opposition Coalition. They are separate organizations. But there certainly are communications between the two, and there are members of the Syrian political opposition here in Morocco who contact and talk to people from the Free Syrian Army.

I’m – I’ll turn it over to my colleagues to talk about the practical and tangible effects and your other question.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: Okay, so I think I need to go next. This is [Senior Administration Official One]. Michael, as we said at the top, the technical impact of the – adding al-Nusrah Front as a new alias for AQI, includes this prohibition on knowingly provided material support and the freezing of all property and interest in property in the United States or that come within the United States under the control of U.S. persons. So there are some practical sanctioning effects of the designation, and it can be a powerful tool over the long run, for law enforcement purposes.

But I think one of the primary effects of this designation is to really expose the presence of al-Nusrah Front, an organization that has been established by the leadership of AQI in Syria, and its activities there.

SENIOAR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL TWO: If I could just add – this is [Senior Administration Official Two] – exposing the operations and the identities of al-Nusrah’s leaders is a key objective here. So I just wanted to underscore that. Having these individuals on a blacklist has a practical impact beyond just the direct implications of U.S. law. It means for individuals who have demonstrated that they desire to travel back and forth across borders, actions like these in the past have frustrated that ability, have exposed them to being interdicted and detained.

It also means that as al-Nusrah tries to wrap itself in the legitimacy of the opposition that does reflect the Syrian’s people desires, we have called them out, and for those who are seeking to support the legitimate opposition of the Syrian people, we have drawn a bright line. So I think there are very real sort of second-order effects to today’s actions as well.

OPERATOR: You do have a question from the line of Margaret Brennan with CBS News. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Hi. This is a question for [Senior Administration Official Three]. Al-Nusrah Front is viewed as an effective, very lethal fighting force inside of Syria. When it comes to what’s actually happening on the ground right now, what does today’s action do in terms of in any way lessening what they control or what they influence inside of Syria?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: Al-Nusrah Front is one of many groups that are fighting the Syrian regime now. It is not the only one. And in fact, it is a minority. Its influence has grown over recent months, but it still represents a minority element within the broader armed opposition to the Assad regime. So I don’t want to leave any kind of impressions that we are in any way acting against the broader Free Syrian Army, which is a much bigger organization.

And I’d be very clear we talk – I myself talk to the Free Syrian Army, and we have talked to them about things like the code of conduct and how to treat prisoners, et cetera. We have gotten assurances, and we have seen in many instances good behavior and even sanctioning against those elements of the Free Syrian Army that have acted improperly or against that code of conduct. Nusrah, by contrast, has actually been involved in summary executions of prisoners, for example. Whether the American steps today will immediately curtail Nusrah’s capabilities, I don’t think they will, but I think other nations that are involved in helping the armed opposition will now take more seriously our concerns about the Nusrah Front and its expanding influence, and it is important for countries to understand what al-Nusrah is and what it represents.

And it is important for the Syrians in the political opposition and in the armed opposition to understand what Nusrah is and what it represents. The time of a political transition is approaching. It’s approaching quickly as events on the ground move. And it is important to understand that Nusrah is an extremist group that cannot possibly be a part of the political transition to a tolerant and free Syria.

OPERATOR: Next we will go to the line of Mina al-Oraibi. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Hi. This is a question also for [Senior Administration Official Three]. If I can ask, do you expect a position to be taken against Jebhat al-Nusrah Front in Marrakesh tomorrow from other countries? And I also wanted to know, you said you have been in touch with the FSA, so have you informed them in advance of this designation? And have they voiced concerns to you about Jebhat al-Nusrah Front and what they’re doing on the ground and whether that actually makes certain civilians in Syria wary of the opposition?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: The meeting in Marrakesh hasn’t started yet. The ministers have not arrived. And so I don’t want to prejudge what the outcome will be. But what I would say is that the previous Friends of the Syrian People meetings in Tunis, in Istanbul, and in Paris, in each of those occasions, the partner states of the Friends of the Syrian People have emphasized their support for a tolerant Syrian society. They have emphasized their hope that the next Syrian government, after the Bashar al-Assad regime ends, will be one that respects human rights and that treats all Syrian citizens equally, without discrimination, and without prejudice because of their ethnic or religious views. And I do not think that this Friends of Syria conference will deviate from that strong support, that vision of the next Syrian government, after the political transition begins.

With respect to the Free Syrian Army, they know our concern about the Nusrah Front. I have talked to them myself about it and we have talked to others in the Syrian opposition over the past month. And they know what our position is and I’ll leave it at that.

OPERATOR: And you do have a question from the line of Joyce Karam with Al Hayat. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Yes, hi. My question is also to [Senior Administration Official Three]. Would this make it more likely that the U.S. would arm non-extremist elements in the Syria opposition? And if the regime targets al-Nusrah Front now, would the U.S. be okay with that?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: I’m sorry. I didn’t understand the second question. Can you say it again?

QUESTION: Yeah. If the Assad regime goes ahead and targets al-Nusrah Front, would you be okay with that?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: I see. Okay. With respect to your first question, we have always said with respect to our policy on providing arms that, number one, we do not provide arms to the Syrian opposition now. We have also said that the President has never ruled out in the future providing arms, but we do not do it now. But number three, for us, providing arms has to be done in a way that helps promote a political solution. And until we understand how these arms promote a political solution, we do not see how provision of arms is a good idea.

With respect to the Assad regime targeting al-Nusrah, I would simply say that we have condemned the Assad regime as a state sponsor of terrorism. We have condemned the Assad regime’s incredibly brutal and excessive, egregious acts of violence against the Syrian population. The news from yesterday is just shocking. I’m not going to comment on when it targets al-Nusrah, except to say that we condemn extremism on both sides. We condemn extremism that is the Syrian regime, and we condemn extremism in the Syrian armed opposition. Neither one of them presents a good – neither one of them presents a realistic way forward for a Syrian political transition that wants to give the Syrian people a system that will be free and respect the human rights of all Syrians.

MODERATOR: Operator, we’ve only got time for one more question.

OPERATOR: Okay. And that question will come from Hannah Allam with McClatchy Newspaper. Please go ahead.

QUESTION: Yes. Thanks for the call. I was wondering, how do you disentangle the sort of Free Syrian Army rebel units from Jebhat al-Nusrah fighters when there appears to be such close coordination on the battlefield that’s opened the door to a scenario where somebody like the Syrian Support Group could come under scrutiny for providing materiel support to Jebhat al-Nusrah via these other more accepted rebel groups? And also has the U.S. talked to the Qataris and the Saudis about cutting off Nusrah – not just state funding but the individuals that are believed to be funding them from those countries? Thank you.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL THREE: I’m going to answer the second question first about our diplomatic work. And then with respect to the first question, I’ll make a comment or two on that, and then – and/or [Senior Administration Official Two] may wish to add something in terms of distinguishing.

With respect to our diplomatic contacts, we absolutely have made our views known about Nusrah to our international partners that are working with us to find a solution, a peaceful and political solution to the Syrian crisis. We absolutely have informed them, and they too know about our views.

I think it is also important here to note one positive sign of how the Free Syrian Army itself has understood the threat that Nusrah represents to the political transition in Syria, which is that during the meetings in Antalya in Turkey last week where they were working to set up a unified command for the Free Syrian Army, notably excluded from that meeting was the Nusrah Front, and we think that was a wise decision. With respect to distinguishing, as I mentioned in Antalya, the groups themselves know who Nusrah is, and I think they are better understanding the threat that it represents.

And so we will certainly continue our discussions with them, which in many cases will be an effort to convince more and more elements of the Free Syrian Army to stay away from al-Nusrah. But as I mentioned, the meeting in Antalya was a step forward. I don’t know if [Senior Administration Official One] or [Senior Administration Official Two] want to comment on that business about distinguishing between elements of the Free Syrian Army and other elements of – or I mean, Nusrah.

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: I think the only thing I would add to that is that we’ve taken an important step today to help these groups make the – underscore the importance of the distinction, and the most important thing that we can do in our own assistance is to continue to, as we always do, to strive to ensure that our assistance doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.


MODERATOR: Thank you all for joining the call today, and thank you to our officials, and have a good day.



January 15th, 2013, 10:12 am


revenire said:

Tara I am not interested in your opinions. When you came down on the side of terrorism you and I were “done” as they say.

I posted it for the record, for posterity.

As far as futile arguments go: that is your chief occupation here. After all, is anything more stupid than asking what Asma wants for the new child? Or saying Batta will fall 2000 times a day? It is all you do (beside wishing death on Syrians who support the president).

Syria has no room for you. If you support al-Nusra US law enforcement will find you quite easily. Keep saying how you think they should be supported as they blow up villages and behead Christians.

January 15th, 2013, 10:16 am


Tara said:


Take your Lithium.

January 15th, 2013, 10:22 am


apple_mini said:

#202 Please do NOT insult our intelligence. The damage clearly shows from either IED or shelling. There is no way it is caused by aerial bombing if you just have a little common sense about physics.

Besides, why the regime would attack the university which is fully under the regime’s control? Would that cause more troubles for the regime itself plus adding panic in its turf?

Moderate opposition members should at least have some decency to condemn those terrorist attacks. That way the silent majority of Syrian people can still see some hope on the opposition side. That will also win some hearts from those university students and faculty members who have suffered greatly in this horrific attack.

January 15th, 2013, 10:29 am


zoo said:

Another ironical outcome of the USA so called “counter terrorism” training…

US trained Mali officers switched side and join the Mali Islamists and an American-trained officer who overthrew the elected Mali president in a coup.

” For years, the United States tried to stem the spread of Islamic militancy in the region by conducting its most ambitious counterterrorism program ever across these vast, turbulent stretches of the Sahara.

But as insurgents swept through the desert last year, commanders of this nation’s elite army units, the fruit of years of careful American training, defected when they were needed most — taking troops, guns, trucks and their newfound skills to the enemy in the heat of battle, according to senior Malian military officials.

“It was a disaster,” said one of several senior Malian officers to confirm the defections.

Then an American-trained officer overthrew Mali’s elected government, setting the stage for more than half of the country to fall into the hands of Islamic extremists. American spy planes and surveillance drones have tried to make sense of the mess, but American officials and their allies are still scrambling even to get a detailed picture of who they are up against.

January 15th, 2013, 10:35 am


Tara said:


And if the bombing of Aleppo’s university turned out to be an air bombardment, would you still think it is the opposition stealing a plane and bombing the students?

January 15th, 2013, 10:39 am


zoo said:

#215 Apple_mini

The University blast: a rebels attempt to divert the media from focusing too much on the debacle of the armed gangs in Damascus suburbs?

January 15th, 2013, 10:40 am


Majed97 said:

In Mali, they call them Alqaeda fighters/terrorists; in Syria they call them protesters/rebels/oppositions/activists…

January 15th, 2013, 10:58 am


omen said:

swaida was mentioned earlier. anybody know what to make of this oddity?

Video: Jabhat al-Nusra gives 48 hours for Al-Suwayda Governorate residents (Druze) to stop fighting with Assad

January 16th, 2013, 7:41 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

When the US State department announced its update to Executive Order 13224, news agencies and reporters generally ran with the news that Jabat al-Nusra was named a terrorist organization.

Not much remarked was the designation of the irregular militias as terrorist organizations.

As one of our commentators yammered:

Tara, and other terrorist supporters (talking to you Bill Scherk and you Amal Hanano), the US State Department doesn’t mince words below. Al-Nusra IS Al-Qaeda. If you’re in the United States and you issue public statements of support for the al-Nusrah Front terrorists you could very well be arrested under US law (Bill gets out of it because he’s in Vancouver).

[ . . . ]

[quoting State dept spokesperson] Al-Nusrah Front has sought to portray itself as part of a legitimate Syrian opposition, but today’s actions are intended to expose them and make clear that the United States believes that al-Nusrah’s extremist ideology has no role in a post-Assad Syria. Among the consequences of today’s actions is a prohibition against knowingly providing or attempting or conspiring to provide material support or resources to or engaging in transactions with al-Nusrah Front.

Now, did that poster skim past this part of the self-same comment?

The actions we took today fall into basically two buckets: actions against two militias that have been perpetrating violence in coordination with and in affiliation with the Assad government, and then actions in concert with the al-Nusrah [ … ] the Shabiha have operated as a direct action arm of the Government of Syria and its security services, with Shabiha units providing support to units from designated security services, such as the Syrian Air Force intelligence and Syrian military intelligence, that have been among the most active in the violence. [ … ] The other pro-regime militia that we are sanctioning today is Jaysh al-Sha’bi, which operates throughout Syria and has been particularly active in Damascus and Aleppo where the militia has supplemented Syrian Government forces operations against the opposition. Jaysh al-Sha’bi was created and continues to be funded and maintained with support from Iran and Hezbollah, and it is modeled after the Iranian Basij militia, which has proven so deadly and effective at using violence and intimidation to suppress political dissent in Iraq.

Copy. Paste. Post post post. Drink French wine. Burp. Carry on …

Here below is the official designation from the Treasury Department, which enforces the order’s sanctions — with details on the Assad-affiliated militias deemed terrorist organizations.

Recall that our plagiarist used multiple posts to menace TARA, and recall also that he botched his reading: the crime that applies to US citizens contains this proviso: the crime is perpetrated when the citizen ‘knowingly provides material support or resources to a foreign terrorist organization (FTO)’

In other words, the anonymous FTO supporter REVENIRE is a much more choice target for Homeland Security than is TARA — by his own terrorist-supporting words on this blog.

Jaysh al-Sha’bi

Jaysh al-Sha’bi is a militia controlled by the Syrian government and has conducted unilateral and joint operations with Syrian military and security elements against the Syrian opposition that have resulted in the deaths and injuries of Syrian opposition members.

Jaysh al-Sha’bi operates throughout Syria and has been particularly active in Damascus and Aleppo, where the militia has supplemented Syrian government forces’ operations against the opposition.

Iran has helped establish and train the Jaysh al-Sha’bi militia in Syria to support the Asad regime and relieve pressure on Syrian government forces. Since mid-2012, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) and Hizballah have provided training, advice, and weapons and equipment for Jaysh al-Sha’bi. Iran has also provided routine funding worth millions of dollars to the militia.

Iran’s IRGC Commander Mohamad Ali Jafari also claimed that the militia, which he claimed has 50,000 members, was modeled after Iran’s own Basij, a paramilitary force subordinate to the IRGC that has been heavily involved in the violent crackdowns and serious human rights abuses occurring in Iran since the June 2009 contested presidential election.


Since the beginning of the unrest in Syria, the Shabiha have operated as a direct action arm of the Government of Syria and its security services and Shabiha units have provided support to units from designated security services such as the Syrian Air Force Intelligence and Syrian Military Intelligence.

Shabiha units have worked with Syrian Military Intelligence to provide security at Syrian regime facilities and to man security checkpoints in Syrian cities and the Shabiha have been used by the Syrian military during operations in and around Damascus to interrogate and kill potential supporters of the Syrian opposition.

In addition to the Shabiha being identified as part of the Government of Syria pursuant to E.O. 13582, today the Treasury Department also designated the group pursuant to E.O. 13572 for being responsible for or complicit in the commission of human rights abuses in Syria, including those related to repression.

Since the beginning of the unrest, the Shabiha have fired into crowds of peaceful Syrian demonstrators, shot and killed Syrian demonstrators, arbitrarily detained Syrian civilians, and shot Syrian soldiers who refused to fire on peaceful demonstrators. In May 2011, the Shabiha were firing on Syrian civilians trying to cross into Lebanon near the town of al-Bire, Lebanon.

Nice stalking with you, young snuggle bunny. Fais gaffe!

January 18th, 2013, 1:52 am


abc said:

For anyone who loves Aleppo.

Here’s a beautiful tribute to the city by writer Nihad Sirees, who puts his memories of growing up there against the violence and horror of the present.

Geography of Secrets:

January 19th, 2013, 11:21 pm


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