Seven Reasons Why Western Officials do Not Want the Syrian Opposition to Take up Arms

Seven Reasons why Western officials do not want to encourage the Syrian opposition to take up arms.

1. Syria may slip into civil war. This could produce the sort of blood bath that we saw in Lebanon and Iraq that would destabilize the region.

2. Regional capitals will be sucked into the civil war raising the possibility of a larger regional conflagration.

3. Pressure would grow on Western governments to intervene directly. In Iraq, US troops were present to mitigate the worst violence and stem ethnic cleansing and the proliferation of militias and banditry. Syria has no outside force present.

4. Waves of refugees would set out for Turkey and ultimately try to work their way into Europe to find jobs, safety and refugee status. Refugees are a major European fear, as most EU countries already feel overwhelmed by new Muslim immigrants who have caused the rise of Islamaphobia in the West.

5. Moral Leadership. The leadership that Western leaders have already shown in demanding that the Assad regime step down will make it hard for Western leaders not to show the same leadership in protecting vulnerable Syrians and committing troops – perhaps in the context of an international peace-keeping force.

6. If the rebellion takes up arms, the Syrian opposition leadership that is resident in the West will be less likely to have significant influence on the new order established in Syria.  Washington and Western capitals will lose their indirect influence over future outcomes.

7. Islamists are more likely to assert leadership over a new Syria if the struggle for power is decided by opposition arms. Islamists have proven to be the more experienced fighters in the region. They may rise to leadership positions in Syria that they do not enjoy today if the end of the Assad regime is brought about by military means.

For these reasons, western leaders will wait to see if sanctions applied to Syria will cause the regime to “collapse” on its own through defections or a coup.

Western leaders will also continue to add names and corporations to the sanctions list in an effort to keep moral among the Syrian opposition as high as possible. The demonstrators understand that they need Western support against the overwhelming force of the Syrian Army. The West must continue to wratchet up the pressure just short of military intervention in order to prevent the opposition from feeling abandoned or neglected, which could cause their activities to flag.  Syrian activists in the West insist that sanctions will work on their own. They undoubtedly worry about many of the same concerns that Western leaders do.

COMMENTS FROM READERS

AbuGhassan:

I am a fan of Dr Landis work despite all of the unfair criticism he gets here and his pessimist position about Syria’s future. I think he overreacted to the possible error about Dr Galioun and I am probably the one who deserves the blame, assuming that Burhan is actually a Sunni 🙂

The truth is that I and most educated Syrians do not give a rat’s behind if Burhan was An Alawi or not. We want a new and accountable leadership in Syria. Also,keep in mind that a number of trusted media outlet called Burhan an Alawi and he actually have a perfect Alawi accent and he looks like the twin brother of an alawi friend I have. Syria is beautiful,Syria is diverse,it is not a crime for Burhan to be an alawi or Sunni,this severe apology is not necessary,Joshua ,I am fully willing to take the blame. My opinion of dr Glioun is the same and I will judge him by his future acts not his religious affiliation,he is one of the loudest critics of Islamists,and he has my support on that front.

Alescander writes:

I was on the phone with my folks now: in Homs, Sunnis and Alawis are hunting each other down, my cousin fled Homs. In Damascus , my friends ( they are Alawis, no particular relation to the regime) their house was marked with an X.

Some Guy in Damascus Responds:

“X marks are on homes of some alawis in Damascus,” I’ve never heard of such incidents, or anything close to that. Can you elaborate on it?

Alescander Answers:

My friend lives in Mashrooa Dummar and saw an X mark on his door. He called the security. This is all I know. It could be done by kids, by extremists , or even by mukhabarat themselves. The bottom-line this is disturbing. My fear is the amount of hate and the consequences on innocents and the country.

Tara: posted this Video of Syria Soldiers Abusing Prisoners in School Converted to Prison – Latakia 3-Sept-11

Mass arrests have been common in the crackdown on pro-democracy protesters. The video below, from last month, is said to show security forces in Lattakia reprimanding and humiliating detained protesters in what appears to be a classroom.

“Who is your boss?” a soldier asks one man. “President Bashar Hafez Assad,” the man responds. “Liar,” the soldier yells, slapping the detained protester on his neck.

Idaf: “A large portion of Syrians are now proudly sectarian. It’s not something to be ashamed of as in the past.”

A Friend in Greece writes about difficulties in unifying protesters:

“Here in Athens, there is a fair number of Syrians. One of them told me that they organized solidarity protests here, but that the initial organization has split into three. The Christians and secularists objected to the religious slogans and prayers, so they now protest on Saturdays instead of Fridays to avoid the Muslim religious types, and then the Kurds objected to the word “Arab” in various slogans and formed their own separate protest group. Very likely a microcosm of how things are inside Syria. My friend (a Christian) was also most offended that the Muslims had brought in an Egyptian imam to one of the early meetings, who started telling people what to do….

AbuGhassan:

Every time anybody speaks about the role of poverty and unemployment in the Syrian crisis, the champions of freedom and dignity start getting angry as if poverty and unemployment are not the enemies of freedom and dignity. People of the Gulf do not enjoy political freedom but you do not see them,except in Bahrain,in the streets asking for a regime change. How do you think the Saudi regime will respond if protests similar to the ones in Syria take place? This uprising was triggered by oppression and brutality but that was not the only fuel that inflamed the streets.

“This a good assessment. However, the main origin of fear is the presence of more than 700,000 Iraqi refugees in Syria. What happened after the American invasion (Ethnic and religious cleansing of the Christians, made the Christians (particularly the leadership suspicious and may be afraid of any change toward “Democracy” that may result in Chaos”

Ann Posted this Article:

Life after Assad looks ominous for Syria’s Christian minority, Independent, Monday, 5 September 2011

Not everyone is supporting the uprising against the country’s brutal regime. Khalid Ali reports from Damascus. In the gift shop of Damascus’ Chapel of Ananias, a middle-aged Christian man called Sari explained who he thought was to blame for the stories of government brutality emerging from his country. “All the international media are liars,” he said. “Al Jazeera, BBC, CNN – they are all lying. There is no trouble here in Damascus.”…..

According to one activist called Yusef, who used to be an organizer for his local church in Damascus, many Christians have no great love for the Assad regime. Yet large numbers are worried about what will happen if he falls.

“Many of them are not getting any benefits from this government,” said Yusef in his central Damascus living room. “On the other hand, they are not getting damaged. Some people are thinking, ‘in the future, maybe I won’t have the benefits but I will also be damaged as well’.”….

Haitham Khoury responds:

The main origin of fear [among Christians] is the presence of more than 700,000 Iraqi refugees in Syria. What happened after the American invasion (Ethnic and religious cleansing of the Christians, made the Christians (particularly the leadership suspicious and may be afraid of any change toward “Democracy” that may result in Chaos.

Revlon Responds to HK:

To my knowledge, those that fled Iraq after the fall Of the Saddam and his Baathist regime were of all ethnicities, including Shiia and Kurds.

I would expect the most common single motive for their departure to be the introduced the non-ethnic doctrine of De-Baathification and the fear of reprisal for their participation and or benefit from decades of oppressive Saddam Baathist regime.

Another expected factor would be the fear for life and property due to the state of anarchy that ensued.

Therefore, unless supported by data based on filed survey and supporting documents, dubbing this mass exodus of Iraqis to Syria as ethnic cleansing could be considered misinformation.

I would appreciate it if you could provide your data in support of the above made claim.

Khoury writes:

Dear Revlon: Christians were particularly targeted in the Kurdish area in the north. The Kurds are practicing an ethnic/religious cleansing in the North. All that is happening long after the Americans invaded Iraq. It is happening on the watch of the Americans

Off the Wall Writes:

The blood of Syrians is a red line that has been crossed thousands of times by this regime. All other red lines pale in comparison. The sycophants of the Assads are the ones who made it essential to make the demolition of the regime and the removal of its head the only viable option for Syria’s progress. The pathetic fraudulent laws, the godhood of Assad, the corruption of that family, and its brutality made that name the symbol of Syria–the republic of fear, of corruption, ineptness, of mismanagement, and of stonewalling every sincere attempt to reform, and the burial ground of talent. The Syrians are smart, and they are going after the source of the disease not the symptom.

NEWS ROUND UP

Why Can’t the Syrian Opposition Get Along?, BY KATE SEELYE | SEPTEMBER 1, 2011, Foreign Policy

Persistent divisions and a brutal crackdown have prevented Syria’s dissidents from presenting a united front against the Assad regime.

Five months after the start of an uprising against President Bashar al-Assad that has left more than 2,200 people dead, dissidents are still struggling to forge a united front that could duplicate the role played by Libya’s National Transitional Council (NTC).

The NTC was created just 12 days after the start of the Libyan uprising, quickly organizing resistance to Qaddafi within the country and lobbying for support on the international stage. By contrast, the opponents of Assad’s regime have held gatherings in Antalya, Turkey; Brussels; Istanbul; and even Damascus, the Syrian capital, to shape the opposition’s leadership and articulate a road map toward a democratic Syria.

…..

Given the lack of a recognized leadership, different Syrian groups — mainly based in the diaspora — have been jockeying to assert themselves. Most recently, on Aug. 29 young dissidents speaking on behalf of a revolutionary youth group inside Syria named a 94-person council to represent the Syrian opposition. At a news conference in Ankara, Turkey, Syrian dissident Ziyaeddin Dolmus announced that the respected Paris-based academic Burhan Ghalioun would head the so-called Syrian National Council, which would also comprise the crème de la crème of Syria’s traditional opposition.

Dolmus said the council would include many of the traditional opposition figures based in Damascus, such as former parliamentarian Riad Seif, activist Suhair Atassi, and economist Aref Dalila. “Delays [in forming a council] return our people to bloodshed,” he said at the news conference, which was broadcast by Al Jazeera.

But no sooner had the council been announced than it started to unravel. When contacted by the media, Ghalioun and the others quickly distanced themselves from the announcement, claiming they had no prior knowledge of it, according to reports in the Arabic press. Later, Ghalioun denied any association with the group on his Facebook page. One Washington-based Syrian activist, Mohammad al-Abdallah — whose father, Ali al-Abdallah was named to the council — dismissed it as a joke.

Others said it was an attempt by young revolutionaries, upset over the lack of progress, to put forward a wish list of opposition members. U.S.-based Syrian activist Yaser Tabbara, who had helped organize a gathering of anti-government Syrians a week before in Istanbul, called it “an earnest attempt by youth to reach out and demand that we move faster than we have been.”

According to Tabbara, the Istanbul conference that concluded on Aug. 23, was motivated by a similar sense of urgency. “It has been five months since the uprising started, and we don’t yet have a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Assad and his cohorts for their massacres,” said Tabbara. “Part of the reason is that some in the international community, like India, Brazil, and South Africa, do not see a viable alternative to this regime.”

The four-day Istanbul gathering, according to organizers, sought to unite all the efforts of previous opposition efforts under one banner. Few of the groups or individuals from previous opposition gatherings attended the meeting, however. Members representing a consultative committee that emerged from a June opposition gathering in Antalya withdrew at the last minute, claiming, according to Reuters, that it “did not build on earlier efforts to unite the opposition.”

The conference was further handicapped by what Syrian journalist Tammam al-Barazi called “the perception that it was held under an American umbrella.” Its organizers included members of a grassroots community group based in Illinois, the Syrian American Council.

Although dismaying, the opposition’s divisions and sniping are hardly surprising. Most activists grew up under the Assad family’s authoritarian rule, and their differences reflect the many divisions inside Syrian society, which is split by sect and ethnicity as well as ideology. The opposition includes Arab nationalists and liberals with little trust for the Muslim Brotherhood, whose supporters were accused of dominating the first Istanbul conference organized in July by a leading human rights lawyer, Haitham al-Maleh.

The many Kurdish parties that have participated have also been unhappy with some dissidents’ attempts to define a future Syria as “Arab.” Most are also highly suspicious of the West and any support it might offer.

The other challenge has been linking the diaspora opposition, which has been leading lobbying efforts abroad, with the political activists inside Syria. Although the diaspora has contacts among the traditional Syrian opposition based in Damascus, such as writers Michel Kilo and Louay Hussein, it has struggled to familiarize itself with the young activists who have led the protest movement. These protesters, who have organized themselves into local coordination committees, have largely remained anonymous to avoid arrest.

Signs are growing that some of the protest leaders are unhappy with the recent flurry of gatherings abroad. According to Washington-based dissident Ammar Abdulhamid, a group calling itself the “Syrian Revolution General Commission,” which he says represents up to 70 percent of the local coordination committees, reacted to the Istanbul meeting. In an Aug. 21 Facebook message, it supported efforts by the opposition to coordinate activities meant to support the revolution, but advised against forming any kind of representative body to speak on behalf of the revolution.

The reasons for the Syrian opposition’s inability to organize an umbrella group may be understandable, but the costs of failing to do so remain real. It will take a unified effort to communicate the opposition’s vision for their country’s future and convince those Syrians still sitting on the fence that a viable alternative to Assad’s rule exists. The opposition must also coordinate its message to encourage defections among the main supporters of the regime — informing them that their rights will be guaranteed under a democratic Syria, but that they will eventually face justice if they continue to support the government’s crackdown.

A united opposition is also urgently needed to challenge the growing call for armed resistance by some protesters in cities like Homs, where the Syrian government’s crackdown has been especially harsh. Some protest leaders have suggested that the Assad regime’s crackdown can only be effectively opposed at this point through force, while other protesters have held banners calling for a no-fly zone.

Just across Syria’s border in Antakya, Turkey, two groups of renegade Syrian army officers — the Free Officers of Syria and the Free Syrian Army (sometimes known as the Free Officers Movement) — are arming, according to Abdulhamid. A YouTube video uploaded on Aug. 18 shows an announcement by the Free Officers Movement declaring itself to be an armed group committed to protecting “the peaceful revolution and protesters.” Just last week, the Free Officers of Syria published a statement claiming that the defections of a significant number of soldiers were reported in a Damascus suburb.

The dissidents gathering in the many meetings outside Syria say they remain committed to a peaceful revolution free of outside intervention. The local coordination committees in Syria also released a statement condemning the use of force as “unacceptable politically, nationally, and ethically.”

But clearly, the many Syrians who have not yet abandoned support for Assad’s regime fear what will follow its collapse. If they are to be convinced otherwise, they will need to see the establishment of a broad-based opposition leadership whose public face is comprises respected dissidents living in exile, like Ghalioun, who reject armed struggle to achieve their aims.

Such a unified coalition has the opportunity to help Syria make a peaceful transition to a democratic, pluralistic form of government. Until that happens, a storybook ending to Syria’s uprising remains little more than a distant hope.

David Ignatius in the Post

Syria is another example of “rebalanced” foreign policy and its drawbacks. Some U.S. officials hope for an Egyptian-style solution, with elements of the Syrian army (perhaps backed by the neighboring and powerful Turkish army) staging a coup against President Bashar al-Assad that allows democratic elections and gradual formation of a new government.

EU must impose comprehensive economic sanctions on Syria now, says European Foundation for Democracy – Friday, 2 September 2011

Brussels, 2nd September 2011. The EU’s decision today to impose an embargo on Syrian oil imports does not go far enough. National commercial interests have for too long been proffered as reasons for inaction by the EU to tackle human rights abuses by authoritarian regimes. Unless comprehensive economic sanctions are imposed on Syria, the EU will lose credibility within the global community as well as with its own citizens. The time for action is now: the EU has an obligation to support the Syrian people and enact comprehensive economic and other sanctions against the al Assad regime in Damascus…..

Instigation Channels Continue Attack on Syria, Call for Arming Terrorist and Demand Foreign Interference in Syria’s Affairs Sana

DAMASCUS, (SANA) – A number of satellite channels entered a new stage of bltanat hostility towards Syria, calling openly for providing terrorist groups with weapons and money and adopting all opinions that support this regardless of who is behind them or what agenda they’re carrying out.

In the coverage of these channels – particularly al-Jazeera and al-Arabiya – of Friday’s events in Syria, all reports called for arming the terrorists and foreign interference in Syria in a manner that betrays clear annoyances and disappointment over the gradual return of normal life to several Syria cities which had witnessed criminal acts by armed terrorist groups.

Vivid Scenes of Defiance in Syria, Ledeblog NYTimes, September 02 2011

At least 15 dead in Syrian violence
September 4, 2011, AFP

At least 15 people died in violence across Syria on Sunday as the visiting Red Cross chief sought access to those detained in five months of anti-regime protests. Six soldiers and three civilians were killed when an armed group opened fire on a bus in Maharda, central Syria, state news agency SANA reported.

“Nine people, among them an officer, were killed and 17 others wounded this morning in Maharda in an ambush by an armed group who opened fire on a bus carrying soldiers and labourers going to work,” it said. SANA said a security patrol killed three of the assailants and seriously wounded a fourth.

The Local Coordination Committees, which group anti-regime activists on the ground, said security forces shot dead three people in the Khan Sheikhwan area of Idlib province in northwest Syria. Security forces encircled hospitals “to prevent the wounded from being brought in for treatment”, it charged.

On Friday, SANA said gunmen in Khan Sheikhwan had kidnapped Wael Alia, corporal with Syria’s internal security services. International Committee of the Red Cross chief Jakob Kellenberger flew into Damascus on Saturday for talks with President Bashar al-Assad over access to prisoners and areas of unrest. According to activists, 27 people were killed in operations by the army and security services across Syria on Friday and Saturday.

Syria economy: EU gets tougher, 2011-09-04
Sept. 2 (Economist Intelligence Unit) — FROM THE ECONOMIST INTELLIGENCE UNIT

As expected, the European Union has imposed a ban on the import of Syrian oil to its member states in reaction to the continued violent crackdowns by President Bashar al-Assad’s security forces on pro-democracy demonstrators. With 95% of Syrian oil exports usually ending up in European countries this latest move will be felt harder in Syria than the previous, largely symbolic, US ban on Syrian oil imports or earlier European sanctions on the assets of regime figures.  However, with its back against the wall Mr. Assad’s regime is expected to prove adaptable and, with any more damaging UN-backed boycott of Syrian oil seemingly a long way off, these sanctions may have less impact than EU leaders hope.

Coinciding with a meeting of European foreign ministers in Poland, the European Council announced in a statement on September 2nd that it was imposing a ban on the, “purchase, import and transport of oil and other petroleum products from Syria.” The statement continued that no financial or insurance services may be provided for such transactions. The announcement came after some opposition from Italy, which is a significant buyer of Syrian oil. As a sop to the Italians, the sanctions will not begin until November 15th.

Syria currently produces 387,000 barrels/day of crude oil, according to the oil ministry, and exports about 145,000 b/d. The main destinations of these exports are refineries in Germany, Italy and France. Since the Libya crisis Italy in particular has increased its share, reportedly purchasing over half of Syria’s oil exports to compensate for lost Libyan oil. With both the production company (Syrian Petroleum Company) and the sales company (Sytrol) state owned, most profits from these sales end up in the Syrian treasury, comprising 20-25% of total budget revenue. The Syrian opposition in exile has argued that boycotting Syrian oil is a way of harming the regime’s finances, with which it finances the military machine currently deployed against protesters, without hurting the economy or ordinary people. Keen to avoid sanctions like those imposed on Saddam Hussein’s Iraq in the 1990s, which worsened the lives of ordinary citizens without ousting the dictator, European leaders have been drawn to the opposition’s idea of a targeted oil boycott.

Adaptable autocrats

However, the sanctions may have less of an impact than either the EU or the Syrian opposition may hope. Firstly, the Europeans have not been able to persuade other states to join the boycott and there are plenty of alternative buyers of Syrian oil outside of the EU. China, India and other Asian countries are likely to be interested, even though they may demand a discount for having to recalibrate their oil refineries to handle Syrian heavy crude.

Asian buyers have shown few qualms in the past about buying oil from states that were subject to western sanctions, such as Sudan. Secondly, whatever impact the sanctions do have will be slow given their delay until mid-November. It is likely that the regime won’t feel the pinch until early next year, by which timeit may have  successfully crushed the opposition. Thirdly, as has been seen elsewhere, autocratic regimes prove remarkably adaptable and inventive when faced with sanctions. Syria’s allies in Iran will certainly offer advice on how to minimize their impact, based on their experiences of various UN sanctions since 2006.

Positive possibilities

The EU sanctions will not be completely ineffectual, however. As well as causing serious complications to the regime’s finances there are possible political ramifications. For one, the opposition may be boosted. Coupled with some European leaders joining US president, Barack Obama, in calling for Mr. Assad to “step aside”, the sanctions are a significant show of solidarity from Western leaders to the opposition. This may persuade more people to join the protesters on the ground and might encourage the opposition in exile to organise themselves better—a notable problem at present—knowing that Western leaders are seeking a realistic alternative to the Assad regime and are willing to take

action against it. A second possibility is that Syrian business leaders, who have been loyal to Mr Assad until now, may begin to turn on the regime after recognising that Western opposition is increasing and could ultimately inflict serious damage on the economy and their livelihoods. Certainly the more diplomatic pressure is increased the more defections from business leaders are likely.

UN-likely

However, for real diplomatic and economic pressure to be placed on Mr Assad, more states need to join the EU and US in penalising the regime, which appears unlikely at present. Almost as soon as the EU sanctions were passed France started to talk up the possibility of a UN-approved boycott of Syrian oil. However, veto-wielding China and Russia are both close to Syria, tend to defend regimes’ right to deal with internal protest undisturbed, and are still reeling from Western leaders overstepping the bounds of a UN resolution they backed on Libya. Moreover, Syria’s neighbours in Turkey, Iraq and the Arab states, while increasingly frustrated by Mr. Assad’s behaviour, are unlikely to back any kind of sanctions that might harm their important trade relationship with Syria.

Safe in the knowledge that he still has plenty of time to try to crush the uprising before any hint of a UN sanctions regime, Mr. Assad is therefore likely to dig in, step up his crackdowns on the opposition, and develop creative ways of surviving the European oil boycott.

Syrian opposition hopes for coup as sanctions, protests grind on,
By Ellen Knickmeyer, Los Angeles Times, September 5, 2011

The uprising is testing whether public anger over the collapsing economy and deadly crackdown will break the government before security forces break the nonviolent protest movement.

Reporting from Beirut—Almost half a year into Syria’s deadly military campaign against street protesters, the United States and Europe remained locked in a strategy of economic sanctions and diplomatic pressure to respond to the violence and try to push President Bashar Assad from power.

Leaders of Syria’s protest movement stay locked into their own strategy as well. Each day, they stage sit-ins and unarmed marches that are met by gunfire and, in some cases, tank assaults. Security forces stage house-to-house raids.

With deaths mounting and the increasing detention of protesters, Syria’s uprising has become a race against time, testing whether public anger over the collapsing economy and brutal crackdown can break the government before Assad’s security forces break the nonviolent protest movement.

“We have actually to survive and we have to continue this pressure. If the demonstrations stop, the international pressure stops,” Radwan Ziadeh, a leading Syrian opposition activist, said by telephone from Turkey, where he was visiting camps housing 7,000 of the Syrians who have fled across borders to escape government assaults.

“We think the army will one day make a coup,” Ziadeh said. “It would make the situation much easier.”

Syria’s military and security forces so far have experienced no widespread mutiny. The opposition overall also has rejected armed resistance, unlike Libya’s rebels. And few in Syria, and few in the international community, want a Libya-style foreign military intervention.

Besides the security forces, analysts and Syrians say, the nation’s business class remains the most crucial base for the more than four-decade rule of the Assad family. That includes the favored elite, many of them members of Assad’s Alawite religious minority, a small Muslim sect, who control much of Syria’s biggest enterprises, and the middle-class Christians, Alawites and Sunni Muslims who make up Syria’s merchant class.

Some of Syria’s merchants still see their survival as tied to Assad’s government, said one leading businessman who has substantial investments. A few wealthy ones “will fight the war of the regime to the end,” the businessman said in a telephone interview, speaking on condition he not be identified further.

Others, however, are constantly assessing whether Assad’s regime will survive. For that crucial bloc, sanctions have weight, the businessman said.

“Some of them might not have problems with the regime politically, but they are enraged by its inability to manage the political crisis,” the businessman said. “If the sanctions are developed further, the economic situation will definitely worsen. And that will, most probably, stir up the resentment among the businessmen.”

Donovan (Shell): Twitter storm pounds Shell’s Syria operations, 2011-09-02

Twitter users have joined forces to protest against Dutch oil giant Shell’s business operations in Syria. Friday saw the announcement of an EU-wide-ban on Syrian oil imports. Activists used the hash tag #shellfuelsmurder to stop all of the …

For Syria’s protesters there is no going back
Posted: 04 Sep 2011 Anthony Shadid

Traveling from safe house to safe house, Anthony Shadid meets Syria’s young revolutionaries, one of whom declares: “We’ve already won. We’re victorious now. I lived a life of terror, fear and killing, and now I’m free.” It was past 11 a.m., and Abdullah was finally waking up. The night before had gone late, he and his […]

Syrian crisis not a conspiracy, an opponent says
2011-09-03
by Gong Zhenxi

DAMASCUS, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) — A prominent opposition figure stressed that the current crisis in Syria since mid-March reflects the presence of an existing crisis in the country rather than a conspiracy as the government claims.During a recent interview with Xinhua, Michel Kilo, a Syrian Christian writer and human rights activist, criticized the handling of the crisis carried out by security apparatus, suggesting that the crisis has no security nature but rather a problem with political, social, economic and cultural dimensions that should be dealt with by political tactics.

Kilo made it clear that the continuation of the security handling would lead to a foreign intervention in the Syrian affairs, reiterating that protesters demanding freedom, for example, should not be met by tanks but rather by granting more freedom, even if it is implemented gradually….

He denied the existence of sedition or a salafi movement in Syria, suggesting that protesters did not shout any Salafi slogans, adding that there is a misunderstanding of the legitimate demands of the people.

He also denied the involvement of the United States or any foreign party in igniting the popular movement in Syria, illustrating that what is happening is a result of many years of accumulating sufferings…..

Syria to witness broad national dialogue for reforms — “Al-Baath”, Politics 9/1/2011

DAMASCUS, Sept 1 (KUNA) — Nationwide national conciliation dialogue is due to be launched on Monday as a prelude to holding a broad national convention, the state-run newspaper, “Al-Baath,” said in its edition published on Thursday.

The national dialogue, due to be launched on Monday and last till the 20th of the month, would be held at the level of committees, set up in each of the country’s governorates, Al-Baath said.

The commissions, formed to prepare for the broad conciliation convention, would include representatives of the government, political, social activists and economic figures, leaders of the opposition parties, academic figures and members of unions.

Agenda of the talks at the level of the commissions deal with political reforms, economic and social affairs .These committees will draft plans for reforms and specify the social and economic needs in each of the country’s provinces — to be submitted to the premiership. They will also list the candidates for taking part in the scheduled general convention for the national dialogue.

Among the topics to be tackled, according to Al-Baath, are means for preserving the national unity, facing the “external conspiracy, the questions of the constitution, basic laws, political parties, the elections and role of the media.” The conferees are also scheduled to address various other topics, namely the financial and taxation policies, trade, protection of the national product, investment affairs, employment, creating jobs, development of the agricultural, industrial and energy sectors, as well as education and health services.
Al-Baath said implementation of plans for developing these sectors and tackling these issues would be tied to schedules.

Some 450,000 Israelis march at massive ‘March of the Million’ rallies across country

Protests held in major cities across Israel represent of the biggest rallies in the country’s history. Protest leader: We have chosen to see instead of walking blindly toward the abyss.,……,
Actress and comedienne Orna Banai told the crowd in the capital: “I am not amused that there are hungry children here; that we have a soldier rotting in captivity for five years; that Israel is one of the poorest examples there are of human rights.”….

The Haifa protest focused on the issue of discrimination against Arabs. Shahin Nasser, representative of the Wadi Nisnas protest tent in Haifa said: “Today we are changing the rules of the game. No more coexistence based on hummus and fava beans. What is happening here is true coexistence, when Arabs and Jews march together shoulder to shoulder calling for social justice and peace. We’ve had it. Bibi, go home. Steinitz, go and don’t come back, Atias, good-bye and good riddance,” he said, referring to the prime minister, the finance minister and the housing minister, respectively. ….

Re-imagining the resistance axis
By Mahan Abedin

As the street-level opposition to the Syrian regime shows no signs of abating, there is growing pressure on strategic planners in Tehran to prepare for all scenarios, including one that doesn’t involve current Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as the lynchpin of Syrian politics.The perceived gravity of the problem, reinforced by region-wide changes, should force the entire Iranian foreign policymaking establishment to re-think and re-imagine the deepest dimensions of the country’s regional diplomacy, including the very idea of the so-called “resistance axis”.

There are deep fears in Tehran that the downfall or emasculation of Assad and the Alawite-led Ba’athist regime in Damascus will at
the very least complicate the intricate set of relations that Iran maintains with Lebanese and Palestinian non-state actors, notably Hezbollah and Hamas, and effectively set the Islamic Republic on the back foot in the great strategic rivalry with the United States over influence and hegemony in the Middle East.

While this anxiety is understandable and partly reflects the genuine balance of forces and interests on the ground, it is ultimately myopic and the product of unimaginative strategic thinking. The partial and (in the case of Libya) total collapse of several Arab regimes in the Middle East and North Africa, is a harbinger for a profound re-alignment of the strategic map of the region, and specifically one where diplomacy is set to become more complex and entail greater involvement by indigenous powers……..

In view of these regional dynamics, namely the empowerment of potentially pro-Iranian Islamists in Cairo and the emergence of a volatile and inexperienced regime in Tripoli, Iran should look to cultivating deeper ties with these states and by extension de-emphasizing the relationship with non-state actors.

The resistance axis needs to be rethought and reconfigured to adapt to emerging political and strategic developments and ultimately tied to a more lucid definition of Iranian national interests.

If Iran’s primary national interest in the region is the expulsion of foreign military forces from the Persian Gulf area, then the emergence of more democratic regimes, whose chief sensitivity is their own public opinion, is supportive of this long-term strategic goal.

From this point of view, the downfall of Assad, however unlikely it may appear at this stage, is not necessarily the disaster imagined by many in Tehran’s policymaking circles.

Mahan Abedin is an analyst of Middle East politics.

Turkey crisis is just start of Israel’s diplomatic tsunami – 05.09.2011 Haaretz

The crisis in relations with Turkey is a red alert of the attacks we’re in for on the diplomatic, security and economic fronts, affecting the lives of 450,000 protesters, demanding social justice.

What’s the connection between the masses demanding social justice Saturday night and the worsening relations with Turkey and the expected recognition in the United Nations of a Palestinian state? What does Tel Aviv’s Kikar Hamedina have to do with Istanbul’s Taksim Square and Ramallah’s Manara Square? What does the debate between supporters and opponents of shattering the budgetary framework have to do with the Palestinians’ budget deficit or the downgrading of relations with Ankara?…

40 Israelis held in Istanbul airport, 09.05.2011

Passengers arriving in Turkey detained by local police after their passports taken away from them; passenger: Everyone was in shock

Israeli passengers on board a Turkish Airlines flight that landed in Istanbul on Monday morning were held for several hours by local police after their passports had been taken away from them. The passengers said that the Turkish police officers were disrespectful, claiming that such an incident was unprecedented…

Authorities in Jerusalem estimate that the detention of the Israeli passengers came in response to a recent incident during which Turkish citizens were detained for questioning by border police at Ben Gurion Airport.

Number of Syrians seeking shelter in Turkey drops by 60 pct, 2011-09-0

ANKARA, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) — The number of Syrian citizens taking shelter in Turkey has dropped by over 60 percent to 6,774, an official Turkish statement showed Monday

The statement, released by the Turkish Prime Ministry Disaster and Emergency Management Directorate, said that among a total of 17,132 Syrians who had crossed the border into Turkey so far, 10, 358 of them, or about 60.4 percent, later returned to their homeland

Turkey has spent nearly 12.75 million Turkish liras (about 7.29 million U.S. dollars) to provide shelter, food and medical care to these Syrians, the statement said.

The Syrian shelter-seekers are mainly staying in the six temporary tent sites built by the Turkish Red Crescent in southern Turkish province of Hatay.

Mubarak assets are target of global search (Wash Post)

Thus far, the search — prompted by an Egyptian request sent to countries around the world — has located about $520 million in assets in Switzerland that Swiss authorities say have been frozen. But no money has been returned to Egypt, and it is far from certain whether any assets will ever be recovered.

Comments (301)


SANDRO LOEWE said:

Last week I was in Syria once again. During last 6 months I have been visiting Syria and my parents on a regular basis. I can have
an idea of what is going on through friends and colleagues who explain their experiences and positions.

In Damascus city (bussiness center) many medium to high class people keeps on defending the idea that this regime never will fall and that they are fighting the West and their armed gangs in Syria. But at the same time there is an increasing feeling that bussiness is going to a cathastrophic situation if things do not improve. Anyhow from last 6 months I keep on hearing the same (yet old) story; that last days things are more under control and that in 15 days crisis could be over.

At Damascus suburbs and some in city center medium and low class people I know attack the regime and ask for inmediate change and even death penalty to regime capos.

Outside Damascus, Rif, Homs and Idlib the situation is dramatically going to worse every day. People is absolutely crazy about destroying every single sings and detritus of this regime.
But the feeling is generated by killings more than by political ideas in itself.
Even towns that had never seen problems are beginning to dare to express against the regime. There are many many stories about innocent people who refused to cooperate in any way with Security Services men and were arrested sine die. This are 2 last stories I saw and I can personally confirm:

1- My friend’s brother was asked by security services to drive its van to transport security services to arrest activists.
He denied and told the services that if he was seen cooperating with them he would get killed. Following day he disappeared. Two months later their family received news from the services in Damascus that he was in prison. Notice that this person had no idea nor previous political contacts. He is still in prison.

2- While in a restaurant in Amman a person began shotuing like a possesed in the kitchen. When I asked some one I know in the restaurant he told me he is a syrian guy who received the information that his brother died one month ago in Idlib. He was serving in the army and their family informed him that security services killed him. Last thing I heard was:

WRITE “MEAL FOR THE ASSADS” AT THE GARBAGE BASKET…

3- Some one living in Rif Dimashq told me “muasiqeen” began distributing light arms even to young people aged 16-18 years old but asking them not to use by now because it could cause a massacre

Draw your own conclusions.

September 5th, 2011, 2:08 pm

 

Aboud said:

So the “West” doesn’t want the revolution to get armed? Yeah well, considering that the international community has proven utterly toothless in convincing even 3rd-rate powers like South Africa, India and Brazil to support any effective sanctions against this murderous regime, I really don’t see that the West has offered any other alternatives.

The regime is willing to sacrifice 10,000 Alawites to stay in power. I say its time we tested just how high a number of dead shabeeha it takes until junior gets a clue.

September 5th, 2011, 2:14 pm

 

SANDRO LOEWE said:

I do not think it is Europe who is going to decide when and how is the opposition is going to take arms. Europe is just showing they are afraid of Syria. Just Saudi Arabia and Turkey are able to destroy the iranian base Syria actually is, because they are more afraid of what Iran could become than of what Syria could do through their HA, Hamas, PKK and other fellows.

September 5th, 2011, 2:16 pm

 

Abughassan said:

A coup from within may be the shortest and least bloody road to take to save Syria from a civil war,a lot of people consider this possibility a mere fantasy but most people do not think Bashar will resign and very few believe the rumors that the brutal crackdown will end any time soon. Syrians who are still stuck with Bashar are mostly doing it out of fears:
the fear of losing their privileges or the fear of being ruled by a militant Islamist regime.
11 years,going on 12,should be satisfactory to most politicians,and it is time we have a solid timetable for parliamentary and presidential elections.
The regime is obsessed with the idea that looking weak will speed its demise,that is why it refrained from meeting a major public request: the release of all political prisoners and the end of arbitrary arrests,without taking this necessary step,anything the regime says will be met with a mix of apathy and suspicion.
foreign interference is already taking place but it will gain more significance and
take more forceful forms if the regime continues to use violence and the anti regime forces take up arms and target the Syrian army.

September 5th, 2011, 2:43 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Revlon @54:

Please find below some independent references regarding the violence targeting Christian’s in Iraq. I am not saying that because I am Christian, but because it is a real humanitarian crisis. This humanitarian crisis happened, because the American did a big mess.

http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,587345,00.html

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2030747,00.html

http://www.unhcr.org/48ff570e4.html

September 5th, 2011, 2:45 pm

 

uzair8 said:

Something I came across from the comment section of the Al Jazeera blog ‘Diary of a besieged Syrian town’:

‘This is a story of a defection at Harasta #Damascus#Suburbs
A soldiar was ordered by his officer to shot the protestors. The soldiar refused saying that “the protestors are peaceful and we don’t shot on peaceful people”. The officer gave him one minute to shot or being shot. The soldiar turned his gun against the officers and shot him. He was taken to the hospital.
The source added that the split turned into a battle between the
elements of air security branch and the management of vehicles, leading to an exchange
of shots, injuring more than 35 people on both sides and the residents’

http://blogs.aljazeera.net/middle-east/2011/07/09/diary-besieged-syrian-town

September 5th, 2011, 2:50 pm

 

Aboud said:

“A coup from within may be the shortest and least bloody road to take to save Syria from a civil war”

You are absolutely correct. It is obvious to anyone with even a few brain cells in working order that the regime is leading the country into a civil war. That would suit the Baathists just fine, they don’t mind losing tens of thousands of shabihas and Alawites to maintain their grip on power.

Or do any of the menhebaks here imagine that junior considers them anything but dispensable? He’d cut their throats himself to provide a body for a fake Salafi atrocity.

September 5th, 2011, 2:52 pm

 

Aboud said:

Latest in a series of brilliant songs. Al Mawt wa lal Mazala.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IKRo-MXTKdg&feature=player_embedded

“They [sic] West will not want them to get impatient or feel abandoned”

Too late for that. No matter what happens now, enough people have been killed, imprisoned and abused by the frankly Alawite dominated regime, that acts of revenge are all but inevitable. Junior could resign tomorrow, it won’t stop a considerable section of the Syrian population from acts of retribution for the last six months of city sieges, stadiums and schools full of prisoners, and mass looting, on whoever they think is culpable (ie Alawites).

Tragic, yes, but people should have thought of that before tying their fortunes to this murderer.

September 5th, 2011, 3:03 pm

 

uzair8 said:

People of Syria Beware A Heavenly Whipping
26 January 2011

http://www.haqqanifellowship.com/suhbats/index.cfm?d=3106

You may not agree with it but Im putting it out there as it may be of interest.

Elsewhere the Sheikh predicted ‘all regimes will collapse’ and also calls for rulers to heed the wishes of the people and step down.

September 5th, 2011, 3:08 pm

 

Norman said:

The opposition that calls the Syria army traitor will not accept the army and will seek to dissolve it and the Baath party so Syria become headless, and like Iraq with chaos, The Syrian army and the Bath party know that the problem is not president Assad but the secular nature of Syria.

I think people who believe that a coup will be enough to satisfy the opposition are misguided.

September 5th, 2011, 3:29 pm

 

ss said:

دبي، الإمارات العربية المتحدة (CNN) — استبعد محللون ومراقبون، وصول الأزمة في سوريا إلى حد التدخل العسكري الأجنبي، على غرار ما حدث في ليبيا بعد قرار من مجلس الأمن يقضي بحماية المدنين، قائلين إن عدة أسباب سياسية وجغرافية تجعل من ذلك أمرا صعبا، وغير متوقع.

وقال خبراء تحدثوا لـCNN بالعربية إن طبيعة جغرافية المنطقة، وحقيقة أن سوريا جارة لإسرائيل، تزيد من تعقيد الدور الدولي في الأزمة السورية، إذ أن سوريا تمتلك علاقات قوية بإيران وحزب الله والمقاومة الفلسطينية، وهي أوراق تخشاها إسرائيل، التي ثبتت مصلحتها في بقاء نظام الأسد.

ويرى خبير الشؤون العسكرية اللواء محمد قدري سعيد، أن التدخل العسكري الخارجي لتغيير نظام الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد خيار مستبعد، بسبب اختلاف ظروف وثقافة وتاريخ البلدين، لافتا إلى أن سوريا دولة مركزية لها تاريخ في العمل السياسي، كما أن حكومتها ونظامها متماسك وقوي، مقارنة بالنظام الليبي.

وقال سعيد إن الجانب الأمريكي والأوروبي لديهم نوع من التردد بالنسبة للتدخل بسوريا، خوفا من أن تتحول إلى مركز لحرب شاملة بالمنطقة، خاصة بالدول المجاورة لها ومنها إسرائيل، إذ أن سوريا تمتلك علاقات قوية بإيران وحزب الله والمقاومة الفلسطينية، ما يجعلهم يسعون إلى تضييق الخناق على نظام الأسد وعزله هو والمحيطين به.

وأوضح الخبير العسكري، أن “الأوضاع بسوريا أكبر من الجامعة العربية والأمين العام لها الدكتور نبيل العربي، والتي ترفض سوريا استقباله حتى اليوم، فرغم موافقتها على التدخل العسكري الأجنبي بليبيا، إلا أن العملية كانت بيد حلف الناتو.”

من جهته، استبعد الدكتور عبد العزيز بن صقر، رئيس مركز الخليج للدراسات الإستراتيجية ومقره دبي، تكرار السيناريو الليبي في سوريا، وقال “من الصعب التدخل العسكري الأجنبي في سوريا في الوقت الراهن لعدة أسباب أبرزها تماسك الجيش السوري، وعدم انشقاقهِ عن النظام الحاكم، فالجيش السوري يمكنه التصدي للمواجهات البرية الداخلية بقوة مادام محصنا ومسلحا.”

وتحدث صقر عن المشكلات الحدودية التي تحول دون التدخل العسكري الخارجي في سوريا، قائلاً: “التدخل العسكري الخارجي يتطلب استخدام أراضي الدول المجاورة لتكون نقطة انطلاق لهم، فموقع ليبيا الجغرافي على البحر المتوسط سهل المهمة العسكرية، أما سوريا فمحاطة بتركيا والأردن والعراق ولبنان.”

September 5th, 2011, 3:30 pm

 

Norman said:

68. sf94123 said:

Events in Syria could lead to genocide: Maronite Patriarch Beshara Rai
(Be careful Patriarch Rai, soon you will be called “Menhebek”)

Reed more:

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2011/Sep-05/147942-events-in-syria-constitute-genocide-rai.ashx#axzz1X6bq5J9h

0 0

September 5th, 2011, 3:34 pm

 

Tara said:

The descision to change course to armed resistance is not a western one. Once a tipping point of contineous atrocities against the people is reached, taking up arms will not wait for a permission from the west. Libyans did not wait for the west permission to launch their resistance. Every day 15-30 fine men, women and children get murdered. No one knows the percentage of the “disappearances” that die on daily basis The western countries then will find itself having to decide to either watch silently or actively interfere to support the resistance. The west approach of staged sanctions is not the best stategy. It only allows the killing to continue. 17 people died yesterday.. This is a heavy human price. The west should consider a “shock and awe” approach to sanctions rather than slow trickling of sanctions here and there.

September 5th, 2011, 3:36 pm

 

Abughassan said:

Some people may not know this,but the truth is that the army is a much smaller problem compared to security forces,and reforming that apparatus will be a huge task for any future regime. The security forces control every aspect of life in Syria including the army. That is one reason why I am not sympathetic to calls to attack the army,the other reason is the obvious need for a national institution to keep order and prevent chaos.
The suggestion that public militias or التنسيقيات can replace the army can not come from any serious person,other ideas like forming a new army from scratch, like the sfa,is not just wrong,it is dangerous too.

September 5th, 2011, 3:40 pm

 

ss said:

It is so stupid to bring the Lybian example to Syria. The armed gangs in Syria are heading towards one way: to rest. Their fate is as clear as the sun. MOst cities in Syria are back to normal life. We would expect some criminal killing similar to what happended yesterday in Homs as these armed criminal thugs are targeting buses and so on. 6 months passed and the armed movement is losing ground. They are fragmented, being chased by a fierce army whose only objective is to bring order and peace. We have been hearing news about defection of army men for 3 months: What happended??Where is the broken army???what did these presumed army men do???where is your free syrian army???; one answer to all these questions: THERE IS NONE.

If few army men stood aside that does not broke the army. The news from, Syria is very reassuring. Resturants are full of people. Parties everywhere. The beaches were packed this summer. The only terror is the random killing and criminal acts against civilians similar to what the MBs did in the 80s. That is not unexpected. I already see signs of victory for secular Syria, Syrian people, and the regime. It was a big blow to the radical islamists headed by MB. It was also a big blow to the honest opposition; sorry (were honest) who decided to side by the armed gangs and they really lost the support of the seular Syrian people. The Sunnis on this website does not represent the Sunni people of Syria at all rather they represents a radical agenda. You smell from their posts the support for crimes and they justify anything to bring the regime down. They are the least to care about the Syrian people. Actually most supported a sanctions so their fellow Syrians would suffer while they have they enjoy Starbucks Coffee.

September 5th, 2011, 3:51 pm

 

Abughassan said:

Taking up arms against the regime ,versus simple self defens,is not in Syria’s best interest,it only satisfies a natural urge for vengeance and it carries a very high price tag in terms of loss of lives and it may not even work. When the future and the unity of a nation is at stake,cooler heads have to prevail. Efforts now must be focused on forcing Bashar to give up his position instead of turning this uprising into a civil war. I am saddened at the level of hatred and shortsighted political vision affecting so many Syrians,those who advocate violence while they sit comfortably in their chairs in the west are not worthy of an intelligent discussion.I never blamed any Syrian who had to carry a weapon to protect his family when he sees thugs coming to hurt him or his family,but that is not what advocates or armed resistance are talking about,they are instead justifying random and planned violence against the army with the sole purpose of killing as many soldiers as possible.

September 5th, 2011, 3:59 pm

 

Aboud said:

“Efforts now must be focused on forcing Bashar to give up his position”

And pray tell, how do you imagine to bring about such an abdication on the part of a man willing to sacrifice 10,000 Alawites in order to kill 100,000 Sunnis?

September 5th, 2011, 4:04 pm

 

sf94123 said:

Alescander writes:
“I was on the phone with my folks now: in Homs, Sunnis and Alawis are hunting each other down, my cousin fled Homs. In Damascus , my friends ( they are Alawis, no particular relation to the regime) their house was marked with an X.”
———————–
Khoury writes:
“Dear Revlon: Christians were particularly targeted in the Kurdish area in the north. The Kurds are practicing an ethnic/religious cleansing in the North. All that is happening long after the Americans invaded Iraq. It is happening on the watch of the Americans”

Similar thing happened in Iraq and specially in Baghdad . They used to put a live bullet in an envelope and leave it at the front door of Christian homes (leave or will kill you) – Majority left to Syria and very small percentage made it to the EU and U.S.

We don’t want that to happen in Syria…

September 5th, 2011, 4:07 pm

 

Tara said:

The article in 12

Last paragraph: “The patriarch said that the international community and the church should help Christians in Syria as part of an endeavor to protect all minorities, whether Christians or Muslims.”

Did Mr. Patriarch forget that 99 percent of those who were killed in Syria are Sunnis? What a hypocrite! I hold his comment in the same contempt I hold Albuti’s, Hassun’ and unfortunately some of my own relatives’. He should have said “the international community and the church should help Sunnis in Syria as part of an endeavor to protect all oppressed human beings”. Did he not read the injil lately? May be a refresher course in Christianity is in order!

September 5th, 2011, 4:08 pm

 

ss said:

Radical Islam in general stems from Sunni. The reason of course is that Sunni is the majority of the Muslims and because Islam started in Saudi Arabia, most muslims looks highly to that region which is infested with Wahabi and Salafi teachings and hence most of the thugs who blow off the worl trade center are 100% Sunnis and from Saudi Arabia. IN Syria, we all agree that the armed criminals belongs to the Sunni community, so some may held sunni responsible for that which is not fare, although I believe that a significant minority of Sunnis in Syria welcome such armed move and welcome sanctions; Tara is an example of a Sunni (or half Sunni) who lives in the US and if you look to her earlier post you see how she wants more sanctions to be implied on Syria whici eventually will affact the Syrian people.

On the contrast, terrorism is seldom if any in the Shia community or minorities in general. I have not heard (may be I am wrong), of any shia who blow school buses holding children (like what the MS did in Egypt), or kill intellectual people (like what the MBs who are sunni, did in Syria back in the 80s), or fly planes (again Sunnis, mostly ALqaeda) into the world trade center,,,etc. There are many example of radical islamists who conducted terrorism all over the wold throughout history. All belong to one branch: SUNNI. It is unfare to lable all the sunni as radical islamists but for sure it is fare to say that radical islam stems from Sunni not minorities

September 5th, 2011, 4:24 pm

 

Aboud said:

“It is unfare to lable all the sunni as radical islamists but for sure it is fare to say that radical islam stems from Sunni not minorities”

Unfair. Fair. Label.

Iran is the world’s biggest exporter of terrorism. Hizbollah is a terrorist organization. What do you call what the shias did to the Sunnis in Iraq?

And the Alawite Assad regime is the biggest terrorist regime in the region. Not even Israel matched the Alawite propensity for barbarism.

“to be implied on Syria whici eventually will affact the Syrian people. ”

Applied on Syria. Affect.

Spare us your crocodile tears. Sanctions could not begin to hurt Syrians the way military sieges, arbitrary arrests, shabiha looting of stores and theft of homes have, and yet your concern for Syrians is not so great that you’ve once condemned these war crimes by your Alawite thugs.

And it’s not sectarian to say that the Alawite community has been guilty of unprecedented atrocities against Syrians. That is a fact. The Alawites have had six month to disassociate themselves from this regime. I have yet to see even the slightest evidence that they have done so.

September 5th, 2011, 4:30 pm

 

N.Z. said:

7. Islamists are more likely to assert leadership over a new Syria if the struggle for power is decided by opposition arms. Islamists have proven to be the more experienced fighters in the region. They may rise to leadership positions in Syria that they do not enjoy today if the end of the Assad regime is brought about by military means.

Prof. Landis, who are the “islamists” you are refering to in Syria?

September 5th, 2011, 4:36 pm

 

Tara said:

All

I invite all to answer.  You can use different alias other than your usual SC name if interested.  I am equally interested in the opinion of the silent people.  Those who read and do not comment.

Just to be clear, I still think the time for armed resistance has not arrived.  There may be still hope with civil disobedience.  I do not personally think that a tipping point is reached but I will support the decision of the youth on the ground who are sacrificing themselves and their families for us.  

When is it in your individual opinion justified to defend your country when it is invaded by an enemy.  Is there a threshold or a cut off number of casualties or atrocities above which it is justified?  Please take into consideration that the regime in the eyes of the Syrian people is the enemy!  Tanks that invade the cities are not any different than occupation tanks.  Shabeeha who mayhem, torment, torture, and kill are not considered Syrian brothers, They are enemies. What if 12months past and 20 to 30 innocent people continues to be killed daily. When is it justified?       

September 5th, 2011, 4:38 pm

 

SANDRO LOEWE said:

For respect to all christians and believers in general I find that the Institution of the Patriarch is acting with total blindness and should stop declarations. If normally I find totally out of place seeing a Patriarch, a Pope or a Mufti talking about strategic and international issues more stupid is watching this Patriarch trying to advise syrians what to do or not to. Religion men should take out their hands of politics. Dear Patriarch are you afraid of dictatorships too? Just pray and help those who suffer as your teacher Jesus did.

September 5th, 2011, 4:38 pm

 

ss said:

“What do you call what the shias did to the Sunnis in Iraq?”

Shia being killed in Iraq when Saddam was in power, and now being killed by radical islamists which are Sunni. The history of Iraq is full of examples of how much Shia has suffered uptil now. That is not strange as Shia sect had suffered the most throughout history starting from the killing of the grandson of Mohammad PUH by Yazid and his gangs who him and his father are held up highly by Sunni while the grandkids of our prophit were BEHEADED. So terrorism is not new news for the Sunni radicals, actually it is a profession and plenty of examples exist even in the recent history of how professionals they are.

September 5th, 2011, 4:40 pm

 

Student said:

I would just like to thank you all for contributing in such a way in this blog.
I’m not what you can call a huge fan of Mr Landis but I think he’s someone honest who deserve to be known for his work on Syria. And all the critics against him are exagerated.
And I would like to congratulate him for his blog, which is always up -to-date, something quite rare for website about syria.
Here in France we only got one such website : syrie.blog.lemonde.fr, made by a former diplomat. But the comments are never like the one in Landis blog. Here they are always of a great quality.
Keep up the good job !

September 5th, 2011, 4:43 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

We the pro revolution people we should understand the concerns and worries of the silent majority. It is by understanding we can discern which ones of these concerns are rational or irrational. Then we should address them accordingly. For this reason, I still believe there are two issues to reassure them about:

1. The integrity of the Syrian territory.
2. Addressing the security concerns.

September 5th, 2011, 4:47 pm

 

N.Z. said:

Can someone explain to me the difference between killing and torturing tens of thousands on the hands of one family, and killing the same number of people by Americans/invaders/occupiers/ infiltrators/extremists………

We are imprisoned, tortured, massacred, refugees, emigrants by the millions,….what worse can happen

How can anyone who believes in equality and social justice, justify what israel is doing to the Palestinians, and fear what might or might not evolve in ousting a pariah, jr. and his entourage?

How can a Syrian who views zionism as a racist, oppressive regime and an enemy of Arab states, yet justify a family who rules with the same systematic brutality, and being one of us?

September 5th, 2011, 4:50 pm

 

True said:

@ JOSHUA

On the home page you did post

Off the Wall Writes:
The blood of Syrians is a red line that has been crossed thousands of times by this regime. All other red lines pale in comparison.

While in reality the quote is http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11830

“114. OFF THE WALL SAID:
And the blood of Syrians and Palestinians is a red line that was crossed thousands of times by this regime. All other red lines pale in front of that line.”

Dropping out the “Palestinians” changed the depth and context of this quote, can you please explain why did you remove the word “Palestinians”?

In contrary to your stand, We Syrians appreciate the Palestinian blood as well!!

September 5th, 2011, 4:51 pm

 

Aboud said:

@25 How quickly they choose to forget Pakistan, the world’s most failed state. More Shias have killed each other there than anything Saddam did in Iraq.

It is not possible for a modern state to include a mindset that is still stuck up over a killing that happened over 1400 years ago. The menhebaks claim to be secular, and yet still gnash their teeth over who killed who in the days of Ali and who should have succeeded whom in the days of Mohamad.

Until the Alawites like #25 get rid of the massive sectarian chip on their shoulder, for the safety and well being of Syria and the region, they should be marginalized, and their centers of power utterly destroyed. We have had 40 years of experience with what happens when these people take control. A modern, pluralistic society can ill afford primitive notions about retributions for 1400 year old killings.

September 5th, 2011, 5:00 pm

 

Tara said:

Aboud

“It is not possible for a modern state to include a mindset that is still stuck up over a killing that happened over 1400 years ago. The menhebaks claim to be secular, and yet still gnash their teeth over who killed who in the days of Ali and who should have succeeded whom in the days of Mohamad”

Thank you. The most eloquent comment of the day. The sad truth is …it will never pass through.

September 5th, 2011, 5:07 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

Moshreks, Majoosis,iroonis, Raafidis, you have no future in Syria, go to Lebanon, go to Iran, drown in the Mediterranean , we don’t care. Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman are your CALIPHS !1 Give al Bayah to them !! Hussan, Hussein, Ali were SAHABA. If you claim to follow them then you should pray like Sunnis. By the way, Hussein was WRONG in opposing Muawiyah.

If you do not stop supporting this genocide, we will convert the fake shrines of al-Hussein and Ali in Iraq to public toilets; revenge will be sewwt, we will use chemicals – Mustard gas. the spirit of Saddam and Ali Hassan Majid al-Tikriti a.k.a “Chemical Ali” will be resurrected in Syria…hahahah…; Qurdaha will be Halabja…lets see whast your Majoosi Iranian daddies will do .Sunnis are the Arabs, Sunnis deserve to rule the Middle East; Shia are fake and creations of Abdullah ibn Saba, Alawis are not Muslims, Christians can sit in the lap of MICHEL AOUN for all I care. But we don’t have any hatred for the Druze, the Druze are good people, bcoz they mind their own business.

September 5th, 2011, 5:15 pm

 

ss said:

Aboud;

As I mentioned you are professional like your masters. I gave you examples from history just to show you that radical islam stemed from the Sunni community. I gave you examples from the history clarify the fact that terrorism and radical islam mostly comes from Sunnis, that is all. You got offended from the facts is not my problem. Actually 1400 years has passed and you as your masters use the same language which is hiding the truth and destroying the facts. This is embeded in your Genes and no one can change it. You say Sunni suffered from Shia in Iraq and I just gave you an example of the grandon of our prophit who was killed by SUNNI.
I also gave you an example of Sept 11 which you tried to avoid and not make a single comment. Sept 11 was conducted by Sunni men. You are up to defend that (of course try to destroy the facts, and make lies) but you cannot. It is crystal clear that terrorism for the most part was born in Sunni communities throughout history.
The armed gans in Syria are Sunni as well FYI only.

September 5th, 2011, 5:20 pm

 

True said:

@ Husam,

The Independent | Robert Fisk is always a good source

September 5th, 2011, 5:20 pm

 

Norman said:

Haytham,

You seem to know about the Christians in Iraq,

Can you tell me who forced them out, they were counted on Saddam and the Baath party, were they threatened to leave by the Shia or the Sunni, Kurds or not.

September 5th, 2011, 5:26 pm

 

ss said:

KHALID TLASS: “Moshreks, Majoosis,iroonis, Raafidis, you have no future in Syria, go to Lebanon, go to Iran, drown in the Mediterranean , we don’t care. Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman are your CALIPHS !1 Give al Bayah to them !! Hussan, Hussein, Ali were SAHABA. If you claim to follow them then you should pray like Sunnis. By the way, Hussein was WRONG in opposing Muawiyah”.

I think Aboud will find this useful.
This is rooted in you more than anyone else. This is why Shia had and till now suffer from the radical mentality of radical sunni. I even did not mention a single word about the Caliphs. I just said that the grandone of MOhammad was killed by Sunni, by YAZID who Khalid Tlass seems to worship his father as well.

Isnt it a fair to say that Sunni Yazid killed the grandson and the member of Mohammad PUH. Dont you agree on this fact Khalid Tlass. You even did not mention ALI as one of the Caliphs which again tells me where you come from: RADICAL SUNNI as usual.

To conclude: Radicals for the most part stem from the Sunni teaching and schools. Khalid Tlas is a typical example of such mentality. This is why it is important to cut the roots of radicalism not only in Syria but the world.

September 5th, 2011, 5:27 pm

 

True said:

It’s funny how Menehbeks trying to speak the same Western language of blaming everything on “radical” Muslims (Sunnis), they’re ready to climb the tora bora mountains and hike the Philippines jungle just to come up with a retard lame example to support their shallow arguments.

C’mon idiots the Lebanese, Palestinians, Syrian and Iraqi blood still warm on your hands you bunch of criminals!!

September 5th, 2011, 5:31 pm

 

uzair8 said:

@25 SS

Sunnis have nothing but hatred for Yazeed. Hazrat Muawiyah (RA) were a Sahabi with who Imam Hassan (RA) agreed a reconciliation.

@28 N.Z.

Its worse when the crime is done by one your ‘own’.

@32 Khalid Tlass

“we will convert the fake shrines of al-Hussein and Ali in Iraq to public toilets”

Sunnis will find that comment extremely offensive. Sunnis (apart from the Saudi types) hold in great respect the shrines of the blessed personalities above.

September 5th, 2011, 5:41 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

^ Don’t worry much bro true. Ali Hassan Majid al-Tikriti maybe dead, but many of his family are still alive, and they know a few things about Mustard Gas. Know what I mean ?

@ SS – Your fixation on the issue of the martyrdom of Hussein and all the balderdahs aboud Yazid, caliphs, etc. proves once more that you are NOT a Syrian Alawi, but a twelver Shi’a from Lebanon or Iraq.

Ask AbuGhassan, most Alawis aren’t even aware of these issues. So get lost majoosi fitnah-monger. The days of Saddam and Chemical Ali will be resurrectd.

September 5th, 2011, 5:41 pm

 

Husam said:

@ Nazi officer SS:
IN Syria, we all agree that the armed criminals belongs to the Sunni community.

Who is “we”, you and shabiha-dabiha? You are such a looser, you think Syria is all about you. And what are we to do it with 74% of the SUNNI Terrorists?

While most of SC commentators love to blame Islam and the Islamist boogeymen (Nazi officer SS for example) , here is some stats: transnational terror claimed 6,447 lives while total domestic terrorism was 26,445 between 1998 and 2005.

…hence most of the thugs who blow off the worl trade center are 100% Sunnis and from Saudi Arabia

SS, explain to us how according to the famous BBC reports 9 of the 19 Hijackers (Saudi, Sunni) are alive and well?

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/1559151.stm

September 5th, 2011, 5:42 pm

 

Aboud said:

“I also gave you an example of Sept 11 which you tried to avoid and not make a single comment.”

I avoided it because it is the most ridiculous subject to bring up when discussing Syria. What on Earth does 9/11 have to do with the Baathist regime’s brutal suppression and murder of over 2,200 people? Only a menhebak, chip-on-his-shoulder-Alawite would use 9/11 as an excuse to murder thousands of Syrians.

And by the way, Al-Qaeda’s best friends are to be found in the mountains of Pakistan…ie Shias.

The thing is, this whole issue of who murdered whom 1400 years ago is a pretty handy source of never-ending grievance for anyone looking for an excuse to hate.

It is an event that cannot be undone. I cannot go back in time and make Ali the first Caliph in place of Abu Baker, I cannot go back in time and undo a certain killing. And I sure as hell am not going to apologize for something that happened 14 centuries ago. There is no redress or compensation for the original “sin” the Alawites are so obsessed with. And frankly, they don’t want a redress. They just want a handy excuse to get all worked up.

Hence, we see Alawite menhebaks get worked up over 1000 year old fatwas that no one else in living memory had even heard of. They need to tell themselves that they are persecuted, in order to justify their continued persecution of an entire country.

And enough bullshit about how underprivileged they were in the days before their God Hafez. A wide swath of Syrian society experienced the same discrimination. Syrian society was very class discriminatory, but only the Alawites turned it into an excuse for mass murder.

September 5th, 2011, 5:44 pm

 

MM said:

The time for armed resistance has come. I think 5 months is a legitimate time period for the trial of a peaceful one. It did not bear fruit. We are increasingly worse off with every passing day. Since violence is the language the regime communicates in, we need to return the message.

What are our alternatives? Let’s say Syrians give up on the revolution, and go back to our normal lives. What will Syria look like then? It will be bruised, scarred, and in terrible shape. There would be deep divisions, and absolutely no reconciliation. There will be no jobs, and no functioning economy. There will be a bumbling government no one will respect. There will be diplomatic isolation. We will turn into a Cuba of sorts, but much worse.

That’s not an alternative, obviously. Thus we have one path. The government has crossed to line of no return which closes the door on any positive outcome along the lines they suggested – which involved the dialogue, etc. Therefore, this regime needs to be uprooted by force.

The question is now, what are the military options?

Option 1: “Operation Snakehead” – It would be best to target “Ras al-Haya” himself. This would entail cooperation from generals within the Syrian Armed Forces and possibly security services.

Option 2: “Operation Bleed Dry” – Go after all Shabiha deployed on the streets, removing this important piece of the regime’s strategy.

September 5th, 2011, 5:46 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

@ Uzair8 –

“Sunnis have nothing but hatred for Yazeed. Hazrat Muawiyah (RA) were a Sahabi with who Imam Hassan (RA) agreed a reconciliation”

According to Shaykh ibn Baaz, Hussein (ra) was on Haqq, BUT it is not right to curse Yazeed and do takfir on him.

“Sunnis will find that comment offensive. Sunnis (apart from the Saudi types) hold in great respect the shrines of the blessed personalities above”

Believe me the real graves of al Hussein, ‘Ali (ra), Sayyida Fatima(ra) etc. (all the Sahaba) are NOT located in the places that they are now in Iraq and Iran. Most of them were buried in al Madinatul Munawwara. Prophet Muhammad (saw) said it is not permissible to raise the height of graves, which is why you don;t see the Sahaba’ shrines in Madinatal Munawwara.. The shrines in Iraq and Iran are fabrications.

Stil I do not have anything against Shias or Alawis, nor against theuir shrines or their worship. But their hatred for Sunnis, abd their support for this murderius regime boils our blood. Now we understand why Saddam of Iraq and King Fahd of KSA oppressed Shias, there was a good reason for it.

September 5th, 2011, 5:48 pm

 

MM said:

What I would like to know, which no one has succeeded in doing to my knowledge, is to figure out who are the shabiha, what are their motivations, etc. I recently heard that they were being pad $100 per day. Can anyone verify this information? Is money the primary factor for their support? Perhaps can anyone “befriend” a shabiha person and figure out where their corps come from, how they were trained, by who, etc? Perhaps doing this under the guise of “how can I become one of you?”

September 5th, 2011, 5:50 pm

 

Syria no kandahar said:

(Deleted for multiple personal attacks. You were warned before. You are banned for a week).

September 5th, 2011, 6:00 pm

 

uzair8 said:

Someone posted the alleged leaked ‘Syrian intelligence plan to deal with the uprising’ on Shiachat and the one reply so far is:

“lol, they’ve gone to all that effort to translate absolute rubish, look at all the stains on that socalled top secret leaked document looks like syrian intelligence gives coffee drinking more priority over whats in the document ”

The alleged document once again:

http://news.intercom.gs/leaked-syrian-plan-to-deal-with-uprising-dera

September 5th, 2011, 6:01 pm

 

Husam said:

@ Aboud: How the heck to you whip up such quick answers at warp speeds without making spelling errors even? Do you type with your toes too?

@ True: Thanks for the referral and couldn’t agree more.

@ Khalid Tlass: Many people warned you before, take a deep breath, cool down. I know innocent Syrians are bleeding as week speak but please don’t go wild. Places of worship of any sect are untouchable.

September 5th, 2011, 6:01 pm

 

Husam said:

in case you guys missed my answers from last post…

@ Revlon, thanks bro. I check Aljazeera from time to time, but I agree with you – the Arabic News being more up to the minute.

@ Tara, Canada, Twin Girls. They speak Gerbish now (which is a mixture of Arabic, English, Russian). So far they comprehend Arabic the most. Of course, I will strive that they be better than I in every aspect inshallah (I really suck at writing and reading).

@ Hytham, Re: Christians were targeted, very true. However, was there a race, a creed, or any sect that was not targeted in Iraq?

September 5th, 2011, 6:05 pm

 

beaware said:

Tens of thousands of Israelis seek EU passports
Associated Press
Sep 6, 2011
http://www.thenational.ae/news/worldwide/middle-east/tens-of-thousands-of-israelis-seek-eu-passports
TEL AVIV // Despite their country’s turbulent history, Israelis enjoy a fairly secure existence: they have military might, a world-class high tech industry powering a strong economy, and America as a solid ally.

Yet in recent years, tens of thousands have requested and received the citizenship of European countries like Poland and Germany, which Jews fled just decades ago.

On the surface, the attraction is practical: An EU passport enables free travel and work in the entire union of 27 nations, giving access to high quality and subsidised higher education.

But just beneath lurks some fear for the future.
more..

September 5th, 2011, 6:05 pm

 

beaware said:

Assad underscores importance of knowing truth in Syria
2011-09-05 23:11:55
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-09/05/c_131100864.htm
DAMASCUS, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) — Syrian President Bashar al-Assad underscored Monday the importance of a “direct access” to what is really happening in Syria in light of the ongoing “media distortion,” according to the official SANA news agency.

Al-Assad made his remarks during a meeting held Monday with Jacob Kellenberger, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), who is on a two-day visit to Syria for talks on issues including caring for the sick and wounded in the alleged government’s crackdown on protesters.

Al-Assad welcomed the assessment mission of the ICRC “as long as it is independent and works objectively away from politicization.”

For his side, Kellenberger commended the “huge facilitation” introduced to the ICRC delegation by Syrian government, which has allowed the delegation to have access to several areas and cities in Syria, including detention centers.

Kellenberger, who arrived in the capital of Damascus on Saturday, met also with Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem on Sunday, during which Moallem briefed him on the current situation in Syria and “the armed groups’ practices of destruction, sabotage, killing and intimidation of the citizens,” according to SANA.

He expressed relief over the measures taken by the Syrian leadership to shoulder its responsibilities in defending the lives of citizens.

Kellenberger also voiced his appreciation of the humanitarian activities of the Syrian Arab Red Crescent Organization which has played an effective role in providing the humanitarian needs for the citizens during the crisis, stressing the importance of the volunteers in making the organization’s work successful.

Syria has been in unrest since mid-March when anti-government protests broke out in the southern province of Daraa and spread to other cities.

The Syrian authorities have been blaming the unrest on “armed groups and foreign conspiracy,” and stressed that it would track down gunmen who have intimidated the people and damaged public and private properties.

September 5th, 2011, 6:07 pm

 

Real Syrian said:

S.S said: Radical Islam in general stems from Sunni
My Dear the truth is not only this but Sunni Islam is now out of date…..Sunnis are now facing their last battle against humanity…….

September 5th, 2011, 6:09 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

44. MM said:

“What I would like to know, which no one has succeeded in doing to my knowledge, is to figure out who are the shabiha, what are their motivations, etc. I recently heard that they were being pad $100 per day. Can anyone verify this information? Is money the primary factor for their support? Perhaps can anyone “befriend” a shabiha person and figure out where their corps come from, how they were trained, by who, etc? Perhaps doing this under the guise of “how can I become one of you”

Impossible. To join the Shabbiha you have to be from a recognised Alawi village or neighbourhood, or if you are Christain or Sunni, have the proper “history” (the Mukhabarat keep track); plus you can’t possibly get in without a recommendation from a higher-up.

Don’t worry, the Shabbiha re not a major problem,most of them are rabidly fanatical and some will fjght to their death. I wouldn’t shed salt tears if I see 10,000 Shabbiha bodies piled up in a heap, I’m looking forward to it.

47. Husam said:

“@ Aboud: How the heck to you whip up such quick answers at warp speeds without making spelling errors even? Do you type with your toes too?”

Actually just goes to show how highly skilled and competent the brave people who are protesting on the ground in Syria are. No wonder that the revolution has survuved depite 6 months of brutal vicious efforts to kill it. Its ppl like Aboud and SGID, against dumb retards like that SF guy or SS or MJabali or Ann.

September 5th, 2011, 6:11 pm

 

Husam said:

@ MM:

…who are the shabiha, what are their motivations, etc. I recently heard that they were being pad $100 per day.

Definition of Shabiha-dabiha:

v. Shabiha (Shabiha’a)
v.intr.
1.
a. Shabiha = FATMEN belonging to Muqatada Al Sadr et al
b. To Kill Innocent demonstrators at large
c. Includes rape, torture, of women, children and men
d. Abviously they don’t believe in God or day of judgment
e. They will sell their mothers for $100

2.
a. Synonyms: low life, syrian (edited. Scum is not allowed term on this forum)

September 5th, 2011, 6:16 pm

 

Aboud said:

Husam, I’ve been arguing on forums for a decade. I’m an excellent writer, and unlike a certain frustrated (and banned hehehe) play-write, I’ve had articles published in English language newspapers in the Middle East(but that was a long time ago)

This is the best way I know of contributing to the revolution. We each do our part, the sum of our efforts is mighty indeed.

MM @44 Their motivation is money. In Homs, security officers routinely take people off wanted lists in exchange for money, and warn demonstrators when raids are coming. Its one of the ways Homs has managed to hold out for so long.

According to menhebaks, the following atrocities are all justified by 9/11

Tanks shelling a mosque

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2MQec-0ZcwM&feature=player_embedded

Army thugs firing indiscriminately at homes

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hzbg89YNWEM&ref=nf

Shabiha abuse of prisoners

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDECmtsNqqU&feature=player_embedded&skipcontrinter=1

Shabiha turds smashing up a place of mourning

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QJ_o348kECc&feature=player_embedded

Yes, since the perpetrators of 9/11 were Sunni, that makes all Sunnis in Syria fair game for abuse, murder and imprisonment. It’s hard to argue with that logic…there just isn’t any.

September 5th, 2011, 6:17 pm

 

beaware said:

Storm clouds gather over Syria as Ramadan ends
Pershkina Anastasiya
Sep 5, 2011 13:43 Moscow Time
http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/09/05/55668416.html
The European Union is going to impose new sanctions against Syria. The oil imports embargo may be followed by tougher measures unless Bashar al-Assad stops violently suppressing opposition rallies and quits as president. A statement to that effect came from French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe. Experts, in their turn, argue that the situation in Syria will hit rock bottom even without the involvement of the EU and NATO because the holy month of Ramadan is over.

Experts are sure that technically, the developments in Syria cannot and should not become a repetition of the Libyan scenario, with the region’s situation being much more complex, even from the geopolitical point of view. Syria is closely tied with Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq, Iran and Israel. The list of these countries alone prompts thoughts on possible consequences. President Assad stands out among the leaders of other Arab countries hit by revolutions in spring this year. He easily uses force against the opposition and tries to pursue reforms, primarily the one linked to revising Article 8 of the Syrian Constitution which outlines the Baath party’s ruling role. Any outside interference can therefore provoke an escalation of the conflict and a large-scale war in the region.

Turkey may become one of the leading players here, with its high ambitions of turning into the region’s major power and disinterest in Syria’s remaining a strong country, political analyst and expert in oriental affairs Stanislav Tarasov said in an interview with the Voice of Russia:

“The Turkish media are spreading rumors concerning their country’s possible armed invasion of Syrian territory with the purpose of creating a so-called “buffer zone” there. Turkish President Abdullah Gul recently said that Assad has lost political credibility in his eyes. The conflict may assume a global regional character if Syrian militants get involved in the fight against Assad’s rule,” says expert Stanislav Tarasov.

Another country that may interfere in the Syrian conflict is Iran, which will, however, act on the side of the incumbent President, Stanislav Tarasov explained:

“Through the influence of Tehran and Damascus, the ideology of Syria’s Alawite government is being spread to neighboring Lebanon and various Hezbollah groups, as well as on the Palestinian settlement process. Breaking the Syrian link of this chain is equivalent to undermining Iran’s positions and influence in the region. Iran has repeatedly warned Turkey about a possible counterblow if the latter places its territory at NATO disposal for an attack against Syria,” Stanislav Tarasov said.

Furthermore, such an escalation of the conflict could also turn into an inter-confessional war that would, apart from the mentioned countries, involve Iraq as well. For this reason, Western countries are so concerned about the situation in Syria. However, the point is that each of them pursues its own goals, with the EU and the US about to launch a war for the region’s energy resources. The most dangerous thing is that none of the parties is interested in Bashar al-Assad’s remaining Syrian president. The Western world’s dislike for him is not only tangible in political statements but also in the way the Syrian conflict is being highlighted by Western media, according to senior fellow of the Institute for Oriental Affairs Boris Dolgov who recently visited Syria as part of a Russian delegation of political, religious and public figures:

“The real state of affairs is largely at odds with information disclosed by a number of news agencies. Most people support the incumbent regime, despite all the problems. Reforms initiated by the Syrian government are a very positive step for further dialogue with the opposition. We have seen neither anti-government rallies, nor armored hardware, nor injured people in the course of our visit to Hama. In other words, the picture presented by many TV channels is far from being close to reality. Moreover, CNN reported that our delegation was attacked while in Hama, which is totally incorrect,” Boris Dolgov points out.

It is also unclear whether Western leaders will manage to control the opposition which will assume power if Bashar al-Assad quits or not, political analyst Stanislav Tarasov says:

“Assad will be driven into a corner by ultimatum demands. On the one hand, he will express readiness for reform, the creation of a new parliament and even elections; and on the other hand, he will be allowed to carry out none of the planned and declared reforms. The parties concerned are becoming increasingly inclined to removing Assad and passing the authority to powers able to retain control of the situation. And this is what the problem is,” Stanislav Tarasov stresses.

Another expert, President of the Institute of Middle Eastern Studies Yevgeny Satanovsky believes that only Russia and China have a truly well-balanced stance on the Syrian issue. Neither Moscow nor Beijing wants the Libyan scenario to repeat there, given that the Libyan campaign has reduced their interest in that country’s economy to zero. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov recently visited Damascus to pass a message from President Dmitry Medvedev along to his Syrian counterpart. The Russian side endorses Syria’s proclaimed course for political and economic reforms, saying that the government has to take specific steps to implement them. The opposition, in its turn, should not refuse to participate in the dialogue proposed by the authorities. Russia sees this as the only possible way to restore civil peace and consent. An important thing is that Bashar al-Assad referred to the Russian approach as balanced unlike that taken by the West which is only seeking to put pressure on Syrian leaders.

Dmitry Medvedev’s message provided the basis for an alternative document issued by the Russian side in response to the UN Security Council’s resolution on Syria. It has ensured support from Moscow’s BRICS partners – Brazil, China, India and South Africa. As for the Western text of the draft resolution, it appears as “totally non-objective and one-sided”, as Russia’s UN envoy Vitaly Churkin put it. Expert say the Russian version would most likely stabilize the situation in Syria. Any escalation may entail a real war to involve many countries – both Arab and NATO member-states.

September 5th, 2011, 6:19 pm

 

Abughassan said:

Sectarian tension will not disappear over night in Syria,it will take time and patience,and that tension is being helped by the Asad’s rule and the violence that took the lives of many Syians,most of whom (but not even close to 99%) were Sunnis.
A change in leadership with a Sunni at the helm may help,reforming the army and the security forces may help too,but first and foremost,we need a secular government and a new constitution that criminalizes religious discrimination .
From my own observations in Syria I have to say that sectarian rifts are not as bad as some say here,and Sunnis in particular are more tolerant and forgiving than what some pro regime posters portray,but the time has come for a new regime and a new leadership.
Most alawis will abandon the regime if they feel safe about their lives and the future of their kids,this abandonment is less likely to happen if violence breaks out on a large scale.

September 5th, 2011, 6:22 pm

 

Husam said:

@ Aboud:

I’ve been arguing on forums for a decade. I’m an excellent writer, and unlike a certain frustrated (and banned hehehe) play-write.

Mashallah, keep it coming dude. Ever think of having your own blog?

September 5th, 2011, 6:26 pm

 

Tara said:

The revolution is mostly peaceful. The monstrous regime has so far killed 2300 peaceful demonstrators, let alone the disappearances. They mayhemed, tortured, and tormented children. They cut the throat of a singer and broke the hands of an artist. Regime supporters have one and single tactic to use defending the crimes committed which is to allege that the demonstrators are radical islamists amd/or armed gangs. They deliberately try to “sanitize” the truth and create propaganda. They have failed terribly. The demonstrators are not radical Muslims. Most SC mamnhebaks are secular. We are average people enraged by the killings and the humiliation. The mnhebaks always try to provoke a religious discussion in regard to issues occurred 1500 years ago. None of us could care less about who came after who or who did what then. They claim to be secular yet they continue to bring up religion. They are pseudo secular and indeed very sectarian.

Husam, my kids understand some but can’t speak well. They are confused between 3 languages. I try hard to no avail.

It looks like the Russian analyst in 53 borrowed my name. I am thinking to change it to another name.

September 5th, 2011, 6:39 pm

 

ss said:

Khalid Tlass is a Sunni and a friend of the so called reformers on SC. He wrote comment # 32:

“We will convert the fake shrines of al-Hussein and Ali in Iraq to public toilets”

This is an example of the hatered sunni hold to minorities.

He went to threaten the minorities by stating “Qurdaha will be Halabja…lets see whast your Majoosi Iranian daddies will do” Halabja is where Sadam hussien massacared Kurds and killed them with chemical gases. Khalid Tlass is supported by many on SC and has many of the opposition on SC consider a friend. I think they all share the bloody personality but some of them are calm and will not show it until the gain power in Syria and then they will kill minorities including christians, Alawi, and drooz

Khalid Tlass is dreaming to reestablish Claiph, basically he is a radical sunni who wants an Islamic Imara in the middle east. Look what he wrote “Sunnis deserve to rule the Middle East; Shia are fake and creations of Abdullah ibn Saba”

He continues to attack minorities, I repect him because he is honest in speaking his mind. Many Sunnis on this website try to be calm and would not show the real face. They continue to ask for death of the regime (although in their hearts they really meant the death or all minorities) because the regime in Syria protected minorities. They play it cool, howevere, Khalid Tlass spoke his mind and really show the real intentions of the radical sunnies that I mentioned in my previous posts and tried to show that radical islam did not stem from shia rather Sunnis like khalid Tlass

Khalid Tlass wrote “Alawis are not Muslims, Christians can sit in the lap of MICHEL AOUN for all I care”: I wonmder what Dr. Khoury had to say. I think you should send a comment to your fellow friend Khalid Tlass otherwise he will through you in TABOOT TO BEIRUT

This is the real face of the Syrian revolution!!!!!!!!!!!!
These are the well educated people and the top in this revolution!!!!!!
This is why the army of Syria must continue to crack down on the radical elements and the Syrian army

September 5th, 2011, 6:42 pm

 

True said:

@ 13. Tara & ALL

The world has experienced 53 civil wars since 1945 starting from the Greek civil war in 1946 to the ongoing Fatah-Hamas conflict in Palestine started in 2006. The current Syrian unrest is the 54th.

I understand the UN has failed (refused) to quantify the casualties# needed to define a conflict as a civil war, but according to both “James Fearon” ( “Iraq’s Civil War” in Foreign Affairs, March/April 2007) who defines a civil war as having more than 1000 casualties and “Edward Wong” (What Makes a Civil War, and Who Declares It So?” New York Times November 26, 2006) who specifies that at least 100 must come down from each side I can safely assume that what’s happening in Syria is the 54th civil war in the new history.

Like any other civil war, the Syrian scenario is driven by the same “greed and grievance” baseline (founded by Hironaka, Collier, Paul, Anke Hoeffler). Greed lead by an opportunist (Besho) and his thugs who kidnapped Syria to their farm and Grievance by the Syrian grassroots who had enough being invisible.

September 5th, 2011, 6:43 pm

 

Hans said:

it is clear here that many of the writers use this blog to spread unworthy stories and basically very clear lies.
It is unfortunate that the West and basically the USA is using Syria as a tool to pressure Iran and break the influence of that regime over Lebanon.
I speak to Syrians almost on a daily basis in my life, I have very close friends who went there and came back and told me that the western media is acting as usual the tool of the CIA to spread the western propaganda against Alassad regime, although the future of Syria is not know with or without Bashar Alassad that’s not the question. he may not have been the most Angel syria has seen but since the time time of Islam took over syria there has not been any angel who ruled Syria.
It is clear that the Army or the secret police in syria is not targeting innocent people, it is also clear by the same token that the protesters are using arms at small scale and shooting at the army, police and innocent people which the western media never admits.
it is clear what the west want to turn Syria into for sure not a democracy but either i theocracy as in Egypt, Iran, Hamas in Gaza or what it apparent to be happening an Islamic state. The other possibility is turning Syria into another Lebanon where minorities are slaughtered based on the ID card religion listing or as Iraq where the sectarian violent will never end in the years to come.
who knows may be all is written in the secret policy of the CIA.
The only democracy Syria can dream off is to have a Christian present as it happened after independence (Bashara Alkhouri) to keep the islamists off the power, until a secular geverment can establish a new constitution where religion is not part of the politics of the country.
have no religion listed on the ID card that’s the first path to democracy, restore the rules of Law not bribery, nebatism or tribism as the way to rule a country, no family members of the president should have any role in the government.
that is not going to happen in any of the middle east countries therefore we will never have democracy in the middle east.
it is clear that the west is hijacking these movements and by supporting the islamists in egypt, libya and syria it won’t be too long before the west get what it wished for. the medicine is going to be very bitter to the west.

September 5th, 2011, 6:45 pm

 

uzair8 said:

The regime and it thugs must be becoming fatigued by now. Also morale must be low amongst the security forces.

September 5th, 2011, 6:47 pm

 

ss said:

56 wrote: “Most alawis will abandon the regime if they feel safe about their lives and the future of their kids”

You are asking Alawi too much
You are asking christians too much

Khalid Tlass who is one of the sunnis, and one of the reformers wrote in comment 32 “Khalid Tlass wrote “Alawis are not Muslims, Christians can sit in the lap of MICHEL AOUN for all I care”. His other fellow reformers instead of attacking him and diagreeing with him, they asked him to cool off and relax.
The radicals on SC are well educated and not lay people. They represents the best of the best of the Syrian society and they do not hesitate to threaten minorities, and mass killing them.

September 5th, 2011, 6:49 pm

 

ss said:

uzair8 said: “The regime and it thugs must be becoming fatigued by now. Also morale must be low amongst the security forces”.

Actually the regime vivid supporters left the forum months ago. When I am board I come to write and vent a little bit, also I feel sorry for you as you do not have anyone to keep you busy so I throw a comment like a bone to hungry ———–.
Just to keep yuo excited guys. Khalid Tlass was the hero today as he is honest, speaks his mind, and tell the truth of the Syrian Revolution.

September 5th, 2011, 6:52 pm

 

UZAIR8 said:

Hans

People just wanted their dignity. Was that too much to ask for?

Democracy, Islamists whatever… It is Dignity that is the main driver.

Whan I see Hezbollah leader or Iranian Officials I see the viciousness of the Syrian regime. Iran and Hezbollah will be bitterly hated by the arabs and muslims for a long time. I dislike Russia and China now too. And Hugo Chavez has lost his shine for me.

September 5th, 2011, 6:53 pm

 

True said:

@ HUSAM & Tara

Your kids will be very motivated to excel Arabic when we seal our victory and kick Assdians out for good.

@ ABOUD

Your arrogance kills the Menehbeks 🙂

@ Khalid Tlass

Your name (Khalid) makes the Menhebkes itchy 😉

Dam can’t wait to put names on faces with ALL of you guys in the new ASSAD-FREE Syria 🙂 and yeah Dr.Landis please make sure to join us.

God bless

September 5th, 2011, 6:54 pm

 

uzair8 said:

@64 SS

I was referring to on the ground in Syria and not regime supporters on this forum.

The thugs and soldiers must be getting tired endlessly chasing revolutionaries around the towns and cities in the mid day sun for months on end without any real success.

September 5th, 2011, 6:56 pm

 

Aboud said:

“This is why the army of Syria must continue to crack down on the radical elements and the Syrian army”

Uh…what? Talk about a Freudian slip. The menhebak obviously sees the Sunni part of the Syrian army as an enemy. The menhebak’s Freudian slip shows that he is fully aware of the large number of defections, thus contradicting his earlier post that the defections were made up. Tsk tsk, let the menhebaks talk long enough, and they always trip themselves up.

“Ever think of having your own blog?” Yes, but it would take a long time to make it widely known. I’d rather use this one. Landis has spent years building up this website’s reputation, so why not just go where the eyeballs already are.

True

“Dam can’t wait to put names on faces with ALL of you guys in the new ASSAD-FREE Syria”

I’m looking forward to it as well. Although I’m sure you guys must have seen me in a video of a demo in Homs.

September 5th, 2011, 6:58 pm

 

ss said:

Khalid Tlass:

Look at uzair8 comment 38; he disagree with you. He is one of your fellows and disagree with your view?????.

Now educate us; who is right; you or him??? You may clarify your points of view.

September 5th, 2011, 7:01 pm

 

ss said:

“66. True said:

@ HUSAM & Tara

Your kids will be very motivated to excel Arabic when we seal our victory and kick Assdians out for good.

@ ABOUD

Your arrogance kills the Menehbeks

@ Khalid Tlass

Your name (Khalid) makes the Menhebkes itchy

Dam can’t wait to put names on faces with ALL of you guys in the new ASSAD-FREE Syria and yeah Dr.Landis please make sure to join us.

God bless”

Radicals are cheering each other. What Khalid Tlass stated was a serious comment. It is a clear attack on minorities and christians (comment 32); despite all of that he gets more cheers and welcomes from his fellows on SC who supports his ideas and adopt his idiology. That is why the Syrian army should extract the radical elements and the terror

September 5th, 2011, 7:06 pm

 

Aboud said:

“Many Sunnis on this website try to be calm and would not show the real face.”

Actually, I’ve stated time and again on this forum that;

1) I will personally turn Hafez’s grave into a public urinal

2) I believe that soldiers who abuse and kill civilians should be boiled in their own urine.

3) The security men killed at Jisr al Shoghour deserved what they got. I hope to hear of many more such retributions.

4) Alawites have pillaged this country for 40 years, and since they have done nothing to remove this murderous regime, they have failed the test of a modern and pluralistic society, by instead pandering to sectarian hate and allowing themselves to be tools in a barbaric oppression of a people yearning to be free. Therefore, Alawite power must be severely curtailed and their bases of power utterly destroyed.

Feel free to quote me far and wide. I’d be happy to remind you if you ever forget.

September 5th, 2011, 7:06 pm

 

uzair8 said:

@69 SS

Your trying to stir things up lol. Is that the best you can do?

You are contradicting yourself too. You claim Khalid ‘says it like it is’ while the rest of us hide the same beliefs yet here you are admitting to ‘disagreements’ and trying to exploit them.

Also how many times did Tara suspect Khalid of being a double agent?

Your just following the script you’ve been given. Why dont you defect while you can?

September 5th, 2011, 7:11 pm

 

Norman said:

Joshua,

I agree that you should close the site for sometime so people can take a deep breath and get back to thier senses.

We like to blame the West and even Israel for our problems, we should only blame ourselves for being last in the world, we are killing each other in the name of Allah, especially Muslims killing each other for understanding and interpreting Islam differently,

Keep your enemy busy solving his own problem is the way to keep him away from you,

The West understand that well and we see that everyday.

September 5th, 2011, 7:16 pm

 

ss said:

71 ABoud;
Thank for reminding me of what you wrote, as you know I am not 24/7 on this website as I have life.
Aboud wrote “Therefore, Alawite power must be severely curtailed and their bases of power utterly destroyed”.

He started by Hafiz Alassad, then went to army….As ususal all of them start with army men and heads of regime; they spare the attack on the Alawi people so they wont sound sectarian but the matter of fact they want to wipe this sect from earth if they can. Aboud joins his fellow Khalid Tlass in his brutal attack on the Alawi sector “Therefore, Alawite power must be severely curtailed and their bases of power utterly destroyed”. He of course put some words like power, basis of power so he would claim later that he does not mean the lay Alawi people rather the people who support the power of the regime.

Aboud also is supported by many fellow like Hussam, Tara, Khalid Tlass. The true intension of these people are posted today on SC so readers can make a judgement call. This is why the Syrian army is chasing the criminal radical thugs who wants to wipe and kill minorities. They want to send christians to lebanon.

.

September 5th, 2011, 7:18 pm

 

Abughassan said:

To most,but not all,syrians,shabeehas are violent thugs who get paid to do the dirty work of their masters. Most had links to rogue elements in the alawi community until lately where some Sunni shabeehas were hired to hit the regime and its supporters. This group include uneducated men often with prior convictions and a history in smuggling goods and drugs. Albaltagiyyah in Egypt are a close relative of the Syrian shabeeha.
Most shabeehas side with the stronger party,Arab regimes usually, but they will change masters for
more money.people in Latakia remember when these shabeehas attacked regime and security forces after the government tried to interrupt their criminal activities.We will always have shabeehas, we just want less of them out and more in prisons or under the ground if they committed murder.

September 5th, 2011, 7:19 pm

 

New regime new hope said:

Prof. Landis please dont close this site as Norman has suggested.

September 5th, 2011, 7:22 pm

 

True said:

@ 70. Ss

Yeah the “Radicals” are coming to kick your butt mate, you better book a ticket to Iran next to your God “Betho” or do you prefer to hang around for a bit @ Tadmor prison? I’m sure we can find (deleted for inappropriate content)

Count down mate!!

September 5th, 2011, 7:22 pm

 

uzair8 said:

Shabeeha are what they call ‘deniables’.

September 5th, 2011, 7:23 pm

 

ss said:

UZAIR8;

I am not making up anoything. Readers can refer to COMMENT 32 by KHALID TLASS, and comment 71 by ABOUD to see the degree of hatered both have for minorities. NO one topped KHALID TLASS. If KHALID TLASS IS A DOUBLE agent I see no readon for you to cool him down. I went to previous posts and found a lot of support by you in particular to him.
I am just saying that you guys at the end of the day share the same beliefs; some my bring it up and others (more dangerous) keep it hidden until they are in power.
It is indeed sad that minorities will be the target of RADICAL ISLAMIC agenda. So far we have two agents of the RADICAL ISLAM out here KHALID and ABOUD who clearly stated their intentions to wipe out minorities (Aboud went for regime and Alawi) while Khalid went fro ALAWi and Chritsians.

September 5th, 2011, 7:28 pm

 

True said:

@ 68. Aboud & Menehbeks

Yeah I did see someone having a piss on Betho’s portrait (you know the one Menhebkes keep prostrating to) in Homs and dam I was sure you might be the one 🙂

All Menehbeks suffer ABOUD’s allergy (go figure ;)) , I wonder if Haytham can prescribe something for them? maybe more prostrating!!!

September 5th, 2011, 7:29 pm

 

True said:

@ 79. ss

do you know how tp pick the soap?

watch “American history x” just to learn what’s waiting for you @ Tadmor prison

September 5th, 2011, 7:32 pm

 

ss said:

TRUE 77:

“DELETED FOR PERSONAL ATTACKS”

Cool down. On top of attacking minorities you feel angry. I should be the one who feels angry not you. I did not threaten you. i did not attack you, I just wrote some facts, and I quoted what you, Aboud, and Khalid just stated (comment 32 and 71). I find it odd why you should go out of your way and have the moderator cancel you comments???

September 5th, 2011, 7:33 pm

 

Husam said:

@ SS: Ok, I confess I am coming out of the closet… I love you.

@ Ya Khal Aboud: What about the Sunnis, the Christians, the Druzes and the Athiest who have a heavy bloodied hand as well? Don’t you think you should have added them as well to your commnet @71 (point 4)? I know a true Sunni, Christian or any man of God will not harm innocent people…

September 5th, 2011, 7:41 pm

 

Husam said:

@ True: I just, just saw that movie (American History X) last night 🙂

September 5th, 2011, 7:45 pm

 

True said:

@ SS

I’m cool bro, it really shocks me how you Menhebks are disrespecting the pure Syrian blood spilled on OUR country and blindly following Betho. Just condemn these brutal actions and we all on the same page.

The question is why Menhebkes don’t condemn the killing of innocent people? As once said dichotomous

September 5th, 2011, 7:51 pm

 

True said:

@ 84. Husam

Good movie eh!

I guess you know exactly what I’m referring to eh 🙂

September 5th, 2011, 7:54 pm

 

Dale Andersen said:

Memo To: SS

RE: “…two agents of the RADICAL ISLAM out here, KHALID and ABOUD…”

Good detective work, Dude. I always had my doubts about those two. Your next assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to slip into Asma’s boudoir and leave a flowery note purportedly from a secret lover. It will drive Bashar insane with jealousy and probably push him over the edge.

Of course, should you get caught, the secretary will disavow any knowledge of your existence…

September 5th, 2011, 8:01 pm

 

Husam said:

@ Dale: I loved it! (edited for bad language) we got Syrian talent, in & out!

September 5th, 2011, 8:05 pm

 

Tara said:

To stop the religious fight imposed As usual by the avidly mnhebak and talking about movies, I watched yesterday Zorba the Greek in honor of its director who died recently. Has anyone seen it?

September 5th, 2011, 8:14 pm

 

Aboud said:

“to see the degree of hatered both have for minorities”

Ho ho ho ho he he he he. The old “Besho, friend of minorities and puppies” line. Did I ever mention at all Kurds? Druze? Christians? No, I’m after the turds who killed over 2000 Syrians. They just happen to be Alawis, that’s undeniable.

I don’t hate your type because they are Alawis. I hate your type for murdering 2,200 Syrians, imprisoning and torturing 15,000, being responsible for thousands of disappearances and crippled bodies. You people have worked hard to earn our hatred.

And what’s your beef with Khalid? All he does is talk. So what, do you think for a moment that anyone in the world is going to be swayed by talk? When images of your thugs’ handiwork get flashed on TV screens across the world every hour, on the hour? Every murdered protestor, every grieving parent and sibbling? Every funeral? Believe, at the end of a day, the world is so sympathetic to Khalid, they probably think he understates his anger.

Besho and his Alawite thugs have done enough these six months to keep the war crimes investigators busy for 60 years.

September 5th, 2011, 8:21 pm

 

True said:

@ “Zorba the Greek”

Not too bad except I hated the name “Basil” lol

September 5th, 2011, 8:26 pm

 

Norman said:

Hey Tara,
I saw that when it first came out,

You can tell now how old I am .

September 5th, 2011, 8:35 pm

 

Tara said:

Norman

“I saw that when it first came out”. OMG! That was many many years before I was born. Norman, you are really old….(just joking). Hey listen, older sophisticated people are much more “charming” than young not so experienced.

True, the name is funny but I liked the movie overall especially the dance. Did not need to cry for a change.

September 5th, 2011, 8:46 pm

 

Norman said:

Thank you , I look like Rami Khoury.

September 5th, 2011, 8:54 pm

 
 

Norman said:

With a beard,and no glasses .

September 5th, 2011, 9:09 pm

 

True said:

@ Menhebkes

Betho is hiding behind his last card of “patriotism”

This takes us all the way back to April 7, 1775 when Samuel Johnson stated

“patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel”

nuff said

September 5th, 2011, 9:21 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

@ Norman#35

Ethnic cleansing in Iraq affected all sects and ethnicities. The Kurds were expelled from the sunni areas. The Sunnis were expelled from the Shi’i areas. The sunnis were expelled from the Kurds area. Since all these groups have their own areas within Iraq most of their migrations were Internal. Because the Christians did not have their own area, their migration was mainly an external one mainly to Syria.
Possibly, if the Christians had their own area would have done the same with other ethinicities or religion.

Of course, all these crimes were committed long after Saddam was toppled. Really, it has nothing to do with Saddam. It has to do with chaos after the American invasion and the American game of divide and rule that ignited the possessive and hate instincts,
All that to say why some groups in Syria are afraid from change. I am not saying that necessarily should be afraid. I am saying that we should understand their source of fear and we should find ways to reassure them. (I have more to say about that).

September 5th, 2011, 9:31 pm

 

Norman said:

haytham ,

The opposition in Syria is not making it easy to trust them, do you know why, do they really want a civil war or just ignorant about the fear of people from what happened in Iraq, and how to deal with that, and where do the Iraqis in Syria stand.?

September 5th, 2011, 9:48 pm

 

ss said:

A person from Homs wrote on facebook

يا سيدي الرئيس وأما ما يحصل اليوم هو حرب إبادة وحملة تطهير على الهوية….. يا سيد الأمة أولادنا و نسائنا أمانة لديك، رجال الزهراء كلهم شهداء احياء ولكن نسائنا واطفالنا مسجونون في منازلهم ومع ذلك لم تسلم الطفلة الشهيدة ساندرا حسن ١٣ ربيع وهي على تلعب عل سطح بيتها وتم قنصها بعد محاولة اغتيال والدها من ايام. سيدي ارجوك ان تلبس لباسك العسكري فنحن نقاتل اسرائيل على جبهة حمص

September 5th, 2011, 9:49 pm

 

ann said:

Sanctioning Messenger Dr. Bouthainia Shaaban Assaults American Values

The US treasury and State departments have targeted her and the Obama administration, largely it appears, out of ignorance.

Sep-05-2011 15:30

http://www.salem-news.com/articles/september052011/lybia_update-fl.php

(TRIPOLI) – As part of its 7th set of US sanctions against Syria, which began in June, 2011, the Obama administration has targeted a messenger, a sometime spokeswoman, a positive image of Syria, someone people of all religions and cultures have easily identified with over the past several years, Dr. Bouthainia Shaaban. The US administration acted thus for the sole purpose of pressuring the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad, but has succeeded in undermining American values of freedom of expression much more.

On August 28, 2011, the US Treasury and State Departments targeted Dr. Bouthainia Shaaban, and froze any assets she might have in the US.

According to State Department spokesman, Victoria Nuland, who two US Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffers speculate may view Dr. Shaaban as a rival of sorts given their job descriptions, and Dr. Shaaban’s stellar performances during meetings with US officials both in the US and Syria, the explanation for blacklisting a Syrian nationalist and media advisor remains: “She (Dr. Shaaban) has served as the public mouthpiece for the repression of the regime.”

No US official to date has stepped forward to defend the sanctions against Dr. Shaaban with any more substantive or detailed complaint or supporting evidence.

Theodore Kattouf, former US ambassador to Syria was reportedly astonished to see Dr. Shaaban’s name on the latest sanctions list and he expressed on television his regret for such a bad decision. Former Ambassador Kattouf explained that sanctioning Dr.Shaaban was a serious mistake because Dr. Shaaban is well known of her positive and constructive attitudes and positions against wars and injustices and bloodshed.

True, Dr. Shaaban, among several others, is a trusted advisor to the Syrian administration. She presumably offers counsel and insights; perhaps much like Theodore Sorenson did for President John Kennedy, and Bill Moyers for Lyndon Johnson. But she is not and has never been a decision maker. Presumably her advice is considered, but who knows to what degree. Which advisor is also a key decision maker?

Surely the Obama administration knows well that when any person occupies a position as media advisor or even press secretary, he/she speaks for and explains the policy of the administration he’s working for. To sanction them violates American notions and values of freedom of expression and immunity from harassment for performing a vital job that benefits all by way of clear understanding and communication of a country’s position on political, social, and economic issues of the day.

Dr. Shaaban’s background is well known to recent US administrations and also much appreciated according to Washington sources. She is known as an independent thinker, reformer, writer, University Professor (she taught in Eastern Michigan for two years and earned her PhD from Warwick University in the UK and was a Fulbright Scholar at Duke University (1990-1991) and received prestigious McCandless Professorship at Eastern Michigan University for 2000. She is known for her ability and willingness to take a minority position, if her evaluation of the facts of a case or issue leads her there, and is never reluctant to speak truth to power. Her writings, many of which have appeared in the left of center Counterpunch (counterpunch.org) always advance positions against wars, violence and occupation.

The Obama administration knows that Dr. Shaaban has no account in the US, earns a modest salary, is the wife of the manager of the Syrian Estabishment for Food Indurstry and this ‘sanction’ is designed solely to harm her excellent reputation that she has earned during the past couple of decades. When pressed for details of her assets both the US Treasury, and State Department spokeswoman Nuland only offered: “Let’s just leave it at that.”, whatever that is supposed to mean.

Dr. Shaaban’s office avers that she has very few assets at all and certainly none in the US.

“Bouthainia connects with people” according to a US Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffer who has met with her: “Whether with Hamas or Saudi Princes, and both know her views on full rights for women and justice for Palestinians, and with American officials too she is effective.”

For some of these reasons the US treasury and State departments have targeted her and the Obama administration, largely it appears, out of ignorance, according to Congressional sources, said, “Ok, if you think is a good idea go ahead.”

It was not a good idea. Attacking Mrs. Shabaan is a low blow and disgraceful by any standards and especially for one who is a very positive force helping bridge several divides between East and West.

President Obama erred in signing off on this mistake.

On losing her father last May, Dr. Shabaan wrote to an American friend, words that reflect both Syrian and American values and says something about this scholar and humanist.

___________________________________

Dear Franklin,

“I was so touched with your message of condolences; it was so kind of you. Thank you very much. I was fortunate enough to look after my ailing mother for 7 years and after my father for the same period and then for a year and a half before the passing away of my father. I would like to say this is the most important and the most valuable and pleasurable thing I have ever done.

As Muslims we are requested in the Holy Quran to look after our aging parents and never to say a word to them that may hurt their feelings and this comes as second in importance only to believing in God and worshipping Him. In this sense I believe no parents should be sent to senior homes as their most desperate need is for love and affection and not only for food and bread I am so comforted that they lived happily and with integrity and I was an instrument to that. I want to write more about this very important aspect of human life in the future.

Thank you so much again and hope to see you soon in Syria.

Best wishes,

Bouthaina Shaaban

___________________________________

The White House attacked a friend of America and of all people of good will. It needlessly assaulted a symbol of the great country of Syria, the great Syrian people, their history, culture, resistance values, profound dignity, and their decency.

In so doing the Obama Administration sullied American values and doubtless does not represent American values or the will of the American people. It did undermine American values of freedom of expression and compromised American notions of fair play and American legal norms of substantial justice.

Would that President Obama will immediately reverse this ill-considered action.

September 5th, 2011, 9:50 pm

 

Aboud said:

@100

Is he the same guy as this retard

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IfEp-gt-LGI&feature=player_embedded

LOL!

Ask people in Baba Amr, Khaldia, Biyada and Bab Esba3 how many children your disgusting thugs have murdered. So, I guess Homs isn’t “back to normal”? Even though three divisions have been in it and around it for four months? So either your Facebook friend is a disgusting liar, or your entire army is a bunch of incompetents.

Sucks to be a menhebak these days…..

September 5th, 2011, 10:10 pm

 

Aboud said:

“To sanction them violates American notions and values of freedom of expression and immunity from harassment for performing a vital job that benefits all by way of clear understanding and communication of a country’s position on political, social, and economic issues of the day.”

Wow, so Goebbels wasn’t a war criminal, he was just “performing a vital job” for the Third Reich.

And here I was, thinking that America had learned from appeasement.

(And just as I was thinking that the menhebaks couldn’t come up with even more obscure websites. When the heck was salem-news.com created, in the early 90s? What a crappy design)

September 5th, 2011, 10:11 pm

 

some guy in damascus said:

@ husam,
i use a myriad of networks really.
il start with my favorite news network, the BBC. loved it , before, during and after the revolution.then comes al jazeera(hey it beats networks that claim people are dancing in the rain).
then i rely on the Sham news network and the midan revolution page( they are prone to mistakes and exaggerations).
finally, and i find this, the most important, is word of mouth.i’ve managed to reach countless demonstrations and failed demonstrations via word of mouth. friends living in certain areas confirm stories or refute them.
@alescander
was that the only incident? or were there several more? i mean that specific incident doesn’t pass as” some alawis in Damascus”.
@ khalid tlass
khalid, when you lash out at sects i get offended.i keep telling you this. you keep on disappointing me. what do you think of christians like michel kilo, or alawis like aref dalilah? or our own highly-esteemed doctor haytham khoury?
what do you think of sunnis like ghreiwati?
i hope this will make you realize that all sects contribute to syria’s welfare( and destruction).
@ ss
i laugh a lot when idiots say Christians to Beirut.
beirut is a sunni predominated city. the Christians lived in the mountains. nearly all the levantine coastal areas are sunni dominated. lattakia, tripoli, beirut, and sidon. once again, you have to laugh at these ignorant remarks. it reminds me of terry jones attempt at insulting islam by burning the quran although he was too ignorant to know that the only way to respectively destroy a quran is by burning it.
@all.
people are taking up arms at Damascus suburbs, places like harasta and hajr aswad are getting violent. ak-47s, and creative ways are being used to neutralize the shabiha.
in hajr asawad last friday, helicopters were used. why?
the demonstrators lured the shabiha into a narrow alley and started pelting bricks at them from the building’s roofs.
central Damascus itself still remains peaceful.
and now to my favourite part:
a relative of mine was nearby the presidents house in malki when they started hearing anti-besho chants(coming from nearby mhajreen)! imagine! if they could hear it, so can besho!
—————————————————————–
besho’s declaration to the people:
The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it’s still on the list.

September 5th, 2011, 10:17 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

@ Norman #99

I agree with you. The opposition by not early selecting a leadership that is trustful complicated the situation very much. If the opposition early selected a leadership, the revolution would have not appeared as a ghost revolution. Many in the Syrian streets wondering who is behind this revolution. If the opposition early selected a leadership, this leadership would have counteracted and neutralized the propaganda machine of the regime very early on (now it is may be too late).

For long after my first contact with the opposition. I waited long before exposing my name. I was preparing to go to Damascus myself to talk to the Christian clergy. I still have good relationship with many of them (even at the highest level). I am sure, I would have leaned them toward the revolution. The political opposition is too slow and too ineffective. (I still have more to say about that).

September 5th, 2011, 10:19 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

@ Norman #99

This is why I say: in order to address the minorities’ concerns, the opposition leadership should make clear statements regarding:
1. The future of the army.
2. The integrity of the Syrian territory.

If we want to reassure the minorities and say to them what happened in Iraq won’t be repeated in Syria, those questions should be addressed very clearly.

September 5th, 2011, 10:45 pm

 

beaware said:

Turkish opposition in Syria: We are not here to decry Syrian regime
05 September 2011, Monday / TODAYSZAMAN.COM,
http://www.todayszaman.com/news-255887-turkish-opposition-in-syria-we-are-not-here-to-decry-syrian-regime.html
Deputy chairman Faruk Loğoğlu, who is heading a committee of deputies from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has said the opposition is not in Syria to decry the Syrian regime but to investigate matters closely.

Stressing the brotherhood between Turkey and Syria, Loğoğlu said they traveled several regions in Syria accompanied by local administrators and officials, and that they will present their findings as a report to CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.

Loğoğlu also noted that the committee met with Syrian President Bashar Al Assad and Parliament speaker Mahmoud Al Abrash in Damascus.

Before going to Mediterreanian city of Latakia, five CHP deputies visited the Yayladağı district of the southern province of Hatay in Turkey along the Syrian border on Sunday to meet with Syrian refugees who had fled the violence in their country. Hatay deputy governor Akgün Corav and Yayladağı district governor Tolga Polat briefed the investigative team on the situation in the refugee tent camp.

Loğoğlu then told reporters at the camp that they came to Yayladağı to help prepare them for their visit to Syria. “We want to witness events in Syria on the ground,” he said.

In Damascus, Abrash and Loğoğlu reviewed in the meeting the current events in Syria, the foreign interference, incitement campaigns to undermine Syria’s role and destabilize its security, Syria’s state-run Sana news agency, which often distorts facts related to the incidents in the country, reported on Monday.

According to Sana, Abrash stressed that the reform process will continue in order to build a strong Syria, adding that the awareness of the Syrian people will foil all attempts of weakening their national unity.

Loğoğlu said the CHP considers Syria’s stability and security to be important to Turkey and that Syria’s freedom, independence, sovereignty and unity are essential to CHP’s principles.

CHP’s deputy chairman reportedly stressed the CHP’s rejection of any interference in Syria’s internal affairs, adding that the Syrians are able to solve this problem.

The report also said that Loğoğlu visited Homs and Hama and briefed by local officials.

Loğoğlu reportedly stressed his support to Syria and the reform steps taken by the Syrian leadership, Sana alleged.

Homs governor, the report says, pointed out to the relationship between Syria and Turkey, adding that the foreign conspiracy has transformed the situation in Syria from legitimate grievances to acts of violence and sabotage.

Loğoğlu told reporters in Hama that the delegation noticed the security the city and its suburbs enjoy and inspected the casualties caused by what Sana said “saboteurs.”

“He added that the delegation will deliver a message to the Turkish people showing that Syria can solve its problems without any foreign intervention,” the report claimed.

September 5th, 2011, 10:46 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

@ Norman #99

The Iraqi in Syria are overwhelmed by their own situation. Most Iraqi men who came to big cities, Aleppo and Damascus, do not have real work. Most Iraqi women in these cities work in housekeeping or in prostitution. For this reason, with the latest unrest those Iraqi are suffering the most.

September 5th, 2011, 10:54 pm

 

Husam said:

Moderator: I think you made an error @88 there was nothing defamatory in my one sentence comment. If not, tell me what I said wrong and I will make sure not to use that word again.

September 5th, 2011, 11:07 pm

 

Real Syrian said:

to HAYTHAM KHOURY 108
Claiming that Iraqi women in Syria are housekeepers or prostitutes carry a lot of fake and deception….. I know many of them who are professionals and highly educated………This dirty revolution has polluted all means of honor and credibility……I hope if you make a psychiatric review as your hallucinations damage others like Iraqi women and pleasae make a favor if you persuade your …..?Ayiman Abdelnour to attends this review………………

September 5th, 2011, 11:16 pm

 

Revlon said:

65. From previous post: Dear Haytham Khoury,
Thank you for the additional references.
The realities of mass displacement of and murders of Irqi cistizens of Christian and other faiths is not the subject of debate, but the reported scale, the context and the characterisation.

From the references you kindly provided I have learned the following:
1. PM Maliki was keen, and promised Chancellor Merkle to send forces to the North to further protect Minorities from attacks by illegal militias.
2. Interviewed Muslem Imams were in quandry in trying to explain why such minorities would be targeted. They reasoned that it was probably planned by AlQaeda to instigate the west against Islam in order to create a political polarisation in the region.
Both Imams urged the Christian minorities to stay and offered words of Sympathy.
Father Kana, a member with other 10 Christians in the Iraqi parilament was defiant and urged Christians to stay rooted in their country.
3. Of the 220000 refugees registered UNHCR in Syria, only 15,0000 (15%) were from Nainawa, where Christians reside!

I would like to assume that all of the 220,000 refugees, irrespective of faith, were fleeing for their life and seeking an alternative, peaceful and decent living for themselves and a brighter future for their children.
With that caveat, I leave it up to you Haitham to decide who would be welcomed and helped by charity organisations to become a humanitarian refugee in a Western country, the fleeing 195000 Muslems or the 15000 Christians!

0 0

September 5th, 2011, 11:16 pm

 

N.Z. said:

Comments ending with “God, Syria and bashar” no more! At least on SC, this is a good sign.

Although the shabiha are still screaming, “with our lives, with our blood we’ll sacrifice ourselves for you bashar/doctor”

http://www.onsyria.com/?clip=55132&cat=76&parent=59&page=1&sort_order=timestamp

I am yet to see anyone of them taking action, specially those puppets inside the Syrian Parliament.

Perhaps, they think by sacrificing their brethren in lieu of themselves, they will appease their idol further and gain favour. What a pity, how these men are bred!

September 5th, 2011, 11:26 pm

 

Akbar Palace said:

Those Turkeys from Turkey

Anybody know what happened to those “tough” “manly” Turks who told president X-box “time was running out”?

Those ideologies in Turkey still keep X-box’s ambassador in Ankara…

September 5th, 2011, 11:36 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Revlon:

I won’t dispute the numbers very much, because there are some difference in the numbers reported. Just, I wanted to emphasize that the Christian presence in Iraq is doomed to extinction. Further, I was trying to tell you from where the fear of the minorities from the change is coming from.

All the points that I wanted to make at the end is there is fear in some Syrians’ minds from repeating the Iraqi scenario when they think about change. Further, I wanted to insist the importance of:
1. Guaranteeing the security by not dissolving the Syrian army.
2. Keeping the integrity of the Syrian territory to do not provoke any situation similar to the Iraqi one.

September 6th, 2011, 12:36 am

 

Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Real Syrian:

I did not mention the prostitution to demean them. I mentioned the prostitution to describe the miserable life that they are living in, because I am sure no women would work in this field if she is not in need.

I based my knowledge on the subject on the following article;

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Christian-refugees-turning-to-prostitution-to-survive-19719.html

September 6th, 2011, 12:47 am

 

Haytham Khoury said:

Again this is another article to show the miserable situation of the Iraqi women in Syria. Of course, it is not Syria to blame, but it is the criminal situation in Iraq.

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Damascus,-young-girls-the-victims-of-prostitution—almost-all-of-them-Iraqis-11883.html

September 6th, 2011, 12:52 am

 

Revlon said:

23. Dear Tara, you have asked “When is it in your individual opinion justified to defend your country when it is invaded by an enemy. Is there a threshold or a cut off number of casualties or atrocities above which it is justified?”

Thank you for the question.

FIRST: Using personal arms to defend self, family, or helpless victims.

The right to self defense in absence of alternate legitimate, legal recourse can not and should not be denied to victims.

People who lost loved ones and whose lives and living are under daily threat of being violently disrupted have every right to take up arms in self defense.

The highest purpose we should stand for and support should not be our selfish preferences and preoccupations with the peaceful fidelity of the public movement. It should be the protection of the lives of the innocent and unarmed countrymen from the relentless onslaught of heavily armed regime forces.

The objection to taking down a callous sniper who targets for the money anything that moves including women and children would be as callous

The objection to engaging brutal thugs who attack make-shift hospitals for helpless surviving victims would be as brutal.

To ask a family member to remain peaceful while watching the cruel security search teams ram sacking their home, humiliating their family, or abducting or raping their loved ones would be as cruel

To deserve the freedom that our brethren are paying their lives for, we must be at least as brave, virtually that is, in defending their right to self defense.

We as fathers, brothers and sons have the divine and moral obligation to defend our loved ones against criminal attacks by paid mercenaries, under whatever name.

SECOND: Organised armed resistance

It is my personal belief that there is currently a dire need for a professional organized armed resistance.

The goal is to neutralize security forces and shabbeeha and disrupt the lines of communication and logistics to the organized armed forces.

The FOM and the FSA need to consolidate and be given logistical and reconnaissance support. They would be very instrumental in
– deterring and disrupting Jr’s killing machine, and thus in saving lives.
– expediting defections and the collapse of the armed forces,
– Forming a nucleus for a freedom and people conscious armed forces.
– averting a real risk of emergence of less controllable form of armed resistance, namely revolutionary militias.

September 6th, 2011, 12:54 am

 

OFF THE WALL said:

ss @ 36
Isnt it a fair to say that Sunni Yazid killed the grandson and the member of Mohammad PUH. Dont you agree on this fact Khalid Tlass. You even did not mention ALI as one of the Caliphs which again tells me where you come from: RADICAL SUNNI as usual.

Yes its is fair, and Yes Ali was one of the Khalifs and he could have probably been the first Khalif, which would have established a dynasty. However, labeling Yazid as Sunni and Hassan and Hussain as Shia in the modern context is historically incorrect. Yazid was not a radical sunni, he was a king protecting his rule, as simple as that (prety much like besho is doing today). Think about it from historical perspective, and I my be wrong. Shia in these early days meant nothing more than a party, a group, allies, or something like that. These allies saw in Ali and his descendants, being also descendants of the prophet as the rightful “custodians” of the message, while the Umayyad felt that this is now a state and it is their state being the Nobles or the Arabs and the more politically astute and versed. While they insisted on being called Khalifs, they really were more secular than anyone would give them credit for (more secular than the current rulers of KSA). Shia were merely a political party, which had not yet developed much of the religious tenets such as the 12 Imams, some philosophical arguments about Ahlul-bait, and much of the rituals, which came about as a result of the martyrdom of Hassan and Hussein. Until much later, both groups would have rightfully been called Sunna, as both followed the Sunna of the the prophet (and still largely do), and in fact their differences was primarily in interpreting some parts of that Sunna. The distinctive character of Shia emerged much later in the early days of the Abbaside dynasty. Needless to say, old habits die hard as one of the habits then was to bad-mouth the opponent at the podium (Minbar), a practice some of the radical Shia still do, which irks many of the Sunnies. To the contrary, with the exception of Yazid (a well known drunkard and a brute), most Umayyad kings (and they were kings), forbade the practice of (la3n) when it came to anyone of the descendants of the prophet (someone has to look Hajjaj and see if he followed that or not), but to my knowledge Umar Ibn Abdel Aziz and before him Marwan In Al-Hakam (the real founder of the state) as well as his son Abulmalek were very clear about that. (someone please verify whether I am right).

It was a political issue, nothing less nothing more, it only became an issue of sect with the ignorant on both sides continuing some stupid antagonism towards each others, much like what you and Khaled are doing right here, 1500 years after the facts. I am sure that on 15,000 anniversary, there will still be those who would argue the same stories and issue blood libel. Grow up all of you.

September 6th, 2011, 2:13 am

 

joujou said:

don’t close this site, so we will continu to see the real supporter faces and ideas of “syrian revolution” like tara, khoury, aboud et co.
syrian people refuse to think alawi or sunni or chrestian. all of us are syrian, love syria, and doing the best for our unity and our country.
we don’t care if bourhan galioun is sunni or not, we care about what does he think about syria and its future.
we will be against him if he presents any threat for syria but not if he is sunni or what ever he is!

September 6th, 2011, 3:15 am

 
 

ann said:

Blue Coat web filtering technology ‘used by Syria’

5 September, 2011 17:23

http://reflets.info/bluecoats-role-in-syrian-censorship-and-nationwide-monitoring-system/

September 6th, 2011, 3:52 am

 

ann said:

Russia to oppose any moves to arm Syrian opposition

September 06, 2011 02:08 AM

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2011/Sep-06/148012-russia-to-oppose-any-moves-to-arm-syrian-opposition.ashx

According to Western diplomats and political observers watching the developments in Syria, the next stage of the international community’s response to events in Damascus will move from supporting the people’s uprising and condemning the oppression of the regime by waving the stick of economic and financial sanctions – including the travel ban on political officials who have been blacklisted – to arming the Syrian opposition, similar to what was done in Libya.

There, rebels were able to take control of the country, including areas that were subject to Col. Moammar Gadhafi’s rule, and assume power gradually through the National Transitional Council which is now recognized by the international community, as was demonstrated by last week’s conference in Paris.

The U.S., France and Britain will participate in strengthening the military side of the opposition in Syria to create a balance with the security apparatus controlled by President Bashar Assad and his regime. It’s likely that Turkey will spearhead the operation to arm the opposition given the overlap of political, geographic and demographic factors between it and Damascus, which have led Ankara, more than once, to show its discontent with the Syrian regime’s elusive promises of reform.

However, diplomatic sources expect that this course would face the objection of Russia, which has previously rejected draft resolutions against Syria by using its veto in the U.N. Security Council and opposing the Western community by dealing unilaterally with Syria.

The sources explain the reasons behind Russia’s rejection of the West’s evolving response and their opposition to the consensus of the international community on the battle between the Syrian regime and the opposition:

First, the Russians have decided not to fall again for the trick they encountered when NATO failed to uphold its commitment to Resolution 1973 – which limited the mission in Libya to a narrow framework of protecting civilians from aerial bombardments by Libyan forces – by expanding their mission to strike Gadhafi’s positions and supporting rebels’ military operations.

These sources also speak of the struggle over the Middle East in which geo-strategic weapons – from oil to expanding political influence to strengthening military bases – are used and such actions would advance any country’s position internationally. Russia has a military base in the city of Tartus which it will never give up and is protected by Assad’s regime. If the opposition backed by the West takes power, it will constitute a real threat to the base.

The sources also say that it seems that the United States-Russian struggle is the dynamo that is driving the regional and international initiatives on Syria, especially as Washington attempts to compensate for its declining influence in Iraq and Afghanistan by riding the wave of change in the Arab world.

The main reason for Russia’s increasing opposition to Western intervention in Syria, the sources say, is receiving a negative signal from Turkey which has approved a NATO missile defense radar to be installed on its territory, directed against Russia and Iran. The step could cause tension between Iran and Russia, and Turkey, which is trying to distract attention from this decision by expelling the Israeli ambassador more than a year after the Gaza Flotilla incident. Despite the talk in the media, there is no Israeli-Turkish dispute.

In addition, the states that seceded from the Soviet Union constitute today a geographical extension of Turkey and a direct threat to Russian national security. It’s also known that Turkey is attempting, with the ruling Justice and Development Party, to fill the role of Saudi Arabia as a patron for the Sunni presence in the region in opposition to Iranian influence. This raises Russian suspicions that the U.S. is behind the scheme.

It’s also been revealed that there is a geopolitical gain behind Russia’s haste to confront any U.N. resolution to intervene in Syria as its common interests with Syrian and Iran will make the U.S. and its allies think twice before pursuing any action on the ground.

September 6th, 2011, 4:03 am

 

ann said:

Is Syria Next? – Tuesday Sep 6th, 2011 12:42 AM

http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2011/09/06/18689575.php

America’s business isn’t just war and grand theft. It’s also regime change by whatever means.

A previous article mentioned General Wesley Clark, from his book, “Winning Modern Wars,” saying that Pentagon sources told him two months after 9/11 that war plans were being prepared against Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Iran, Somalia, Sudan and Libya. Months earlier, they were finalized against Afghanistan.

Clark added:

“And what about the real sources of terrorists – US allies in the region like Egypt, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia? Wasn’t it repressive policies of the first, and the corruption and poverty of the second, that were generating many of the angry young men who became terrorists? And what of the radical ideology and direct funding spewing from Saudi Arabia?”

“It seemed that we were being taken into a strategy more likely to make us the enemy – encouraging what could look like a ‘clash of civilizations’ – not a good strategy for winning the war on terror.”

On September 5, Nil Nikandrov’s Global Research.ca article asked if “After Libya: Is Venezuela Next?” saying:

NATO insurgents attack on Venezuela’s Tripoli embassy and compound narrowly missed claiming casualties as “ambassador Afif Tajeldine and the embassy staff moved to a safer location at the last moment and left Libya shortly thereafter.”

Nikandrov added that Venezuela’s embassy was the only one looted, suggesting perhaps a message threatening Chavez as America’s next target.

He certainly was in April 2002 for two days by a Washington instigated coup, aborted by mass street protests and support from many in Venezuela’s military, especially from its middle-ranking officer corp.

Later in December 2002 and early 2003, he was again by a general strike and oil management lockout, causing severe economic disruption, and by an August 2004 national recall referendum he won handily with 59% of the vote.

Chavez knows Washington targets him for removal, yet he remains Venezuela’s democratically elected president since first taking office on February 2, 1999, and still popular.

Nonetheless, last June, the Republican controlled House Foreign Relations Committee wanted the Obama administration to aggressively “contain (his) dangerous influence (and) his relations with Iran,” according to Rep. Connie Mack (R. FL), chairman of the Subcommittee on Foreign Affairs for the Western Hemisphere.

He and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R. FL), another right-wing extremist, got the White House to impose sanctions on Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), its state oil company even though America relies on imported oil it supplies.

They and others also want Venezuela designated a supporter of state terrorism with greater consequences if they succeed, unfriendly to US business interests very much opposed.

As a result, whether other actions follow bears close watching. Moreover, Venezuela’s late 2012 presidential election is important, especially with Chavez recovering from cancer, so perhaps is more vulnerable than earlier.

Ahead of the precise date to be announced, Washington is funding his opposition as done previously, meddling in the internal affairs of a sovereign country, what’s illegal in US elections.

Since 2002, in fact, America’s State Department-funded National Endowment for Democracy (NED) directed over $100 million to anti-Chavez groups, candidates, and media campaigns.

Despite America’s debt and budget problems, it continues perhaps in amounts greater than known, and may increase substantially next year as part of a greater regime change campaign.

Are more aggressive actions planned? Only the fullness of time will tell, but given the Obama’s penchant for regime change, events ahead bear close watching.

In Syria also since externally generated uprisings began last March, then intensified, suggesting regime change there as in Libya. Both countries were targeted with violence, so far, however, without NATO intervening against the Assad government or able to get a Security Council resolution passed to facilitate it.

However, according to National Security Council director of strategic communications Ben Rhodes, the Libya model is a template for future US/NATO interventions, but “(h)ow much we translate to Syria remains to be seen. The Syrian opposition doesn’t want foreign military forces but do want more countries to cut of trade with the regime and break with it politically.”

By opposition perhaps he means Washington, NATO allies, and supportive regional regimes, not Syrians or its business leaders, harmed most by sanctions and other tactics.

On August 31, Corbett Report editor James Corbett told Russia Today that manipulated video footage is being used to falsify events on the ground, saying:

“There’s even been the implication that some of the images being shown have been digitally manipulated,” online reports discussing it. One instance cited video footage from Bahrain. Claimed to be from Hama, various stations airing it used different digitally “dropped in backgrounds.”

“So there are some very strange things going on, and unfortunately we live in an age when media manipulation is so easy.”

It’s thus harder to distinguish between reality and fiction. It was true in Tripoli when alleged rebel-supportive euphoric celebrations were, in fact, produced at a Doha, Qatar Green Square Hollywood-style sound stage mockup. In other words, they were staged and untrue. Apparently, the same deception is now repeated in Syria.

A September 3 Corbett Report video with Michel Chossudovsky focused on destabilizing Syria, suggesting a greater global war could result, involving Russia and China.

“Whatever the nature of the Syrian government,” he said, falsely intervening based on “the doctrine of the responsibility to protect is a derogation of the sovereign rights of a country,” according to fundamental international law prohibiting it.

In fact, Western media suppress reports of well armed insurgents, brought in from the outside, stoking violence since last March. At the same time, Assad’s forces were blamed for responding.

In all anti-government demonstrations, disruptive “Islamists, snipers, and armed gangs are involved in acts of arson directed against government buildings,” including a “court house and the agricultural bank in Hama.”

At the same time, nonviolent civilians, legitimately protesting grievances, are trapped between waring sides, resulting in deaths and other casualties.

At issue, however, is “an armed insurrection, spreading from one city to another. We now have very firm evidence that both Turkey and Israel are” supporting militia groups (financially and with weapons), some of them, in fact, used as death squads.

At the same time, “they’re using this a pretext to demonize the Syrian regime, and demand the resignation of Bashar al-Assad,” perhaps heading toward NATO intervention and greater war.

On September 2, Chossudovsky’s Global Research.ca article headlined, “The Al Qaeda Insurgency in Syria: Recruiting Jihadists to Wage NATO’s ‘Humanitarian Wars,’ Part III,” saying:

Despite its authoritarian nature, Assad’s government is “the only (remaining) independent secular state in the Arab world. Its populist, anti-Imperialist and secular base is inherited from the dominant Baath party,” supportive of Occupied Palestinians as is Iran and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

At issue is the US/NATO plan to “displace and destroy the Syrian secular State, displace or co-opt the national economic elites and eventually replace the” current government “with an Arab sheikdom, a pro-US Islamic republic” or US-style democracy meaning one in name only.

As always, America’s pack journalism produces one-sided falsified report, supporting US imperial wars and disruptive insurgencies preceding them.

As a result, accounts and commentaries suppress information about efforts to recruit thousands of jihadist “freedom fighters” like earlier in Afghanistan against Soviet Russia, and currently a de facto NATO invasion force in Libya, massacring anyone thought to be pro-Gaddafi.

Already battling an outside instigated insurrection, is Syria’s turn next, a topic MK Bhadrakumar addressed in his August 30 article, saying:

If earlier events in Iraq and current ones in Libya are “any indication, the future of (Syria’s) sovereignty might be hanging by a thread.” In fact, as he and others believe, regime change in one form or other is core regional US policy for strategic gains against rivals Russia and China.

Images from Syria now are all too familiar, including falsified reports hyping them, as well as claims about people yearning for Western liberators to free them.

As a result, expect Libya to replicate post-Iraq and Afghanistan occupations, highlighted by protracted conflict and violence, including insurgent forces warring amonst themselves, innocent civilians harmed most as a result.

Moreover, British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg ominously said:

“I want to make it absolutely clear: the UK will not turn its back on the millions of Arab states looking to open up their societies, looking for a better life?”

After destroying and preparing to loot Libya, did he mean Syria is next? Surely not Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, other Gulf States, Yemen, or other loyal regional allies, according to Bhadrakumar and other analysts.

Although accomplishing regime change in Syria may be harder than in Libya, never underestimate the ability of Western plotters to find a way. Perhaps what’s now ongoing mere prelude to greater planned disruption politically, financially or by direct military intervention.

“Sustained efforts are afoot to bring about a unified Syrian opposition.” A Turkey-held meeting, “third in a row, finally elected a ‘council’ ostensibly representing the voice of the Syrian people.”

In fact, it represents predominantly Western interests as well as Turkey’s and Israel’s. “The fig-leaf of Arab League support is also available,” pro-West autocratic regimes now “in the forefront” for regime change in Syria.

Key ahead is getting another Security Council mandate for intervention. “The heart of the matter is that regime change in Syria is imperative for the advancement of” America’s Middle East strategy.

It includes delinking Syria from Iran, then Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza, isolating the Islamic Republic, while at the same time, strengthening Israel’s position, and weakening that of Russia and China.

Portraying both countries as being on the “wrong side of history,” Bhadrakumar calls the strategy a “clever ideological twist to the hugely successful Cold-War era blueprint that pitted communism against Islam.”

Western body language and supportive media rhetoric suggest “no conceivable way the US would let go the opportunity (for regime change) in Syria.”

Whether it’s coming, only time will tell. In the meantime, regional violence continues subverting Arab spring aspirations everywhere from blooming.

September 6th, 2011, 4:17 am

 

homsi said:

‘why Western officials do not want to encourage the Syrian opposition to take up arms.?’

do you really think that the rebellion did not take up arms? I hope not ,if you live in Syria ,and specially in Homs the arms matter would be behind you by, no one discuss here if the rebels took up arms or not ,everyone knows they did, and from day one , I m not talking here about Assad supporters , I am talking about the real peaceful demonstrators (who do exist) those peaceful demonstrators know about the armed rebellions who ‘protect’ them and struggle to ‘liberate’ the country from the Alawiets.

Every one who has access to arms and have the necessary courage had took up arms already

September 6th, 2011, 4:20 am

 

homsi said:

four dead !! Armed terrorist men on Monday attacked a bus transporting workers of the Crude Oil Transporting Company near al-Fakhoura traffic circle in Homs

هجوم على باص يقل عمالاً في مصفاة حمص يسفر عن مقتل أربعة وجرح أكثر من عشرين

http://www.syria-news.com/readnews.php?sy_seq=136946

لقي أربعة عمال بينهم إمرأة حتفهم, وجرح أكثر من عشرين آخرين عصر يوم الاثنين في هجوم بالرصاص على باص كان يقلهم إلى منازلهم بعد انتهاء عملهم في مصفاة حمص، وذلك عند مروره في دوار الفاخورة.

وقال مصدر مطلع, فضل عدم الكشف عن اسمه لسيريانيوز “قتل أربعة عمال وجرح أكثر من عشرين آخرين عندما أمطر مسلحون مجهولون الباص الذي كان يقلهم من مركز عملهم في مصفاة حمص إلى بيوتهم لدى مروره في دوار الفاخورة”.

و أشار المصدر إلى أنه “تم إسعاف المصابين إلى المشفى الوطني حيث يرقد اثنان منهم في العناية المركزة نتيجة الإصابة بطلق ناري في الرأس”.

وشهدت المنطقة بعد الحادثة، وفق المصدر ، “انتشاراً أمنياً كثيفاً للبحث عن الفاعلين” فيما ذكر مصدر من الأهالي أن دوي إطلاق الرصاص يتردد في المنطقة وفي مناطق مختلفة من المدينة .

سيريانيوز – حمص

September 6th, 2011, 4:26 am

 

Some guy in damascus said:

Homsi, there are no armed rebels In Damascus city. Rif dimashq is another story. Do you think taking up arms is a legitimate action?

September 6th, 2011, 4:39 am

 

Mina said:

Ann
Thanks for posting these ‘alternative articles’ offering other views than the usual CIA (Anthony Shahid, Wissam Tarif, the Reuters guy…), the Qardawi friends (al-Jazeera sharit of news yesterday speaking of totally unheard stories in Syria, that no one will check), the Emir’s friends (Sarkozy, Cameron, anyone who has weapons to sell and his trying to promote a new imperialist ideology amoong the rich potatoes-bags in the Gulf), the Syrian expats who anyway are not planning to go back and live there since they have already to deal with brilliant multilingual families (Tara, Aboud…)

Homsi, that’s the sad truth: unrest in Syria means only the Lebanon war way or the Iraqi war way, enta taarif shaabak, akiid.

September 6th, 2011, 4:45 am

 

Revlon said:

124. Dear homsi:
You said: ” ‘why Western officials do not want to encourage the Syrian opposition to take up arms.?
do you really think that the rebellion did not take up arms? I hope not ,if you live in Syria ,and specially in Homs the arms matter would be behind you by, no one discuss here if the rebels took up arms or not ,everyone knows they did, and from day one ”

– March 15 2001, Day one: a small fleeting demonstration in Hareeqa that lasted for a few minutes. They dispersed once they spotted eshabab ettaybi!
– Day two: a sit in in front Ministry of inFerior by families of detainees was dispersed by zo3ran l Asad.
– Day 3: school children were nabbed, detained and had their nails pulled by his eunuchs for demanding the fall of the regime.

As you see Homsay, I have just disproved your claim that the revolution took arms from day 1.

In fact I challenge you to provide a single credible and verifiable evidence from independant sources that shows or document a single case of armed attacks committed by civilians against Asad army cowards or his security and shabbeeha eunuchs!

September 6th, 2011, 4:55 am

 

MNA said:

@ 23

Thank you Tara for inviting us to participate.
Whether one agrees with you or not, your question carries many flowed assumptions and statements that even many of the hard core opposition figures would find unacceptable.
First, you are assuming that “revolutionaries” have not yet taken up arms against the regime. Many people would disagree with you.
Second, Equating the national army with the that of an occupying foreign army is just a prime example of your flawed statements. I know that many of the commentators on here will jump and start siting many examples of the brutality in which the army handled the situation on the ground in Syria, but most of the evidences are nothing more than a propaganda war. I m not saying that none of that took place, but it is expected when you send any army or armed forces any where. Can anyone tell me with a straight face that the revolutionaries forces in Libya did not commit atrocities, or in the event of a Libya like scenario in Syria, the “armed revolutionaries” would not commit such atrocities. Let me remind you that this is the army that fought many wars against Israel and gave thousands of martyrs in line of duties. I know that many of the commentators will jump again and say “fought wars and lost”, but this does not diminish the fact that it is the army that fought against Israel more than any other in the region and gave thousands of martyrs. At least this how many Syrians still see it. Let me remind you also that you can hardly find any family in Syria that does not or did not have a son or daughter serving in the army. So your statement might be an insult to millions of Syrians.
Third, your statement ” the regime in the eyes of the Syrian people is the enemy!” is flawed as well. Even the worst optimistic views still agree that between the different minorities, the beneficiaries, the elite, etc..this regime still commands at least 40% support. this is a sizable chunk of the population that would straight out disqualify your statement.
Fourth, you statement “I will support the decision of the youth on the ground who are sacrificing themselves and their families for us.” is at best not shared by many Syrians. No ONE HAS THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO MAKE SUCH A DECISION.
So to answer your question, the majority of Syrians believe that it is never justified.
I still believe that Syria could still benefit from this terrifying experience, but the moment that more people decide to take up arms is the moment that Syria will be lost for ever.

September 6th, 2011, 5:01 am

 

some guy in damascus said:

“this regime still commands at least 40% support.”
whats your assumption built on?

September 6th, 2011, 5:13 am

 

MNA said:

@ 130

From many sources and the study that was posted on this blog last week( I could not find) and showed:

Supporters:
86% of Alawis
65% of Christians
10% of Sunnis

So taking these numbers and proportionate to the entire population and add whatever percentage of the silent majority that the regime would get and you easily reach 35-40%

September 6th, 2011, 5:57 am

 

hsyrian said:

1. SANDRO LOEWE said:
“”My friend’s brother was asked by security services to drive its van to transport security services to arrest activists.
He denied and told the services that if he was seen cooperating with them HE WOULD GET KILLED.””

Don’t you know that according to your own activist MB propaganda:

the activists ( aka peaceful protesters ) are not supposed to kill any CIVILIAN or even SOLDIER ,

the dead Army servicemen are supposed to have been killed by security personnel.

Disclaimer
fouling one’s MB nest

September 6th, 2011, 6:26 am

 

Revlon said:

131. Dear MNA, your quoted 35 to 40% shall be held accountable for their complicity in the unfolding carnage of civilians on the hands of their supported regime.

Their responsibility shall be commensurate with the weight that their support was bearing on the suffering of every lost, tortured, or displaced soul.

September 6th, 2011, 7:01 am

 

hsyrian said:

Aboud and others can deny to be officially membersof the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood but they spreading their lies and propaganda.

“””””
41. Aboud said:

I avoided Sept 11 because it Sept 11 is the most ridiculous subject to bring up when discussing Syria.

“”””

You know perfectly that Al Qaeda real chief organizer of the 9/11 attack is Ayman al-Zawahiri , an Egyptian physician ,
a member of the Muslim Brotherhood that
– killed President Sadat in Egypt ,
– organized terrorist attacks in Syria between 1976 and 1982 ,
– is governing Turkey , “hosting” the meetings of the Opposition,
– is running The Syrian Revolution 2011 Facebook page with its 276575 followers ,
– have the ” most experienced terrorists (not fighters) ” in the region

September 6th, 2011, 7:51 am

 

Tara said:

To Islamophobes on SC

Be on the look out!  Brilliant filmmaker who loves to talk to emotions, prior international awards, formidable experience with children actors, reasonably high budget. 

http://old.tehrantimes.com/index_View.asp?code=215143

Sorry but immersion may be the best cure.  Just trying to help…

September 6th, 2011, 7:53 am

 

hsyrian said:

Dear Joshua,
I usually don’t characterize people according to their use of one word.
One can call their government regime
One can call The Muslim Brothers Islamists

but saying that
“Islamists have proven to be the more experienced fighters in the region. ”
must be clarified by
“Islamists have proven to be the more experienced terrorists in the region. ”

A fighter don’t
kill civilians , unarmed security men , etc
fire at a checkpoint from a civilian car , etc
ambush bus and cars carrying civilians including children , etc
sabotage railways , oil pipe ,
burn shops and justice courts ,
booby trap roads ,
kidnap civil servant

only a ( coward ) terrorist does .

Disclaimers
Ahmad Shah Massoud in Afghanistan was a fighter ,
Taliban and Al Qaeda are terrorists ,
Gandhi was a peaceful protester.

September 6th, 2011, 8:19 am

 

Akbar Palace said:

Aboud and others can deny to be officially membersof the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood but they spreading their lies and propaganda.

HSYRIAN,

How do you know Aboud is a “member of the terrorist Muslim Brotherhood”? Did you find his membership card? Did he tell you this? And what exactly are his “lies and propaganda”? It would be interesting for us if you outline this.

Thanks,

AP

September 6th, 2011, 8:21 am

 

beaware said:

Life in Syria’s Capital Remains Barely Touched by Rebellion
Bassem Tellawi/Associated Press
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/06/world/middleeast/06damascus.html?_r=1&ref=global-home&pagewanted=all
The rebellion in Syria has failed to catch on in Damascus, and its residents have been able to move around without a curfew.
By THE NEW YORK TIMES
Published: September 5, 2011

DAMASCUS, Syria — As protests broke out across a restive Syria on a recent Sunday, and crowds were dispersed yet again by gunfire that left many dead, the conversation in the capital dwelled not on the uprising but rather on nails, along with the choice of polish and hair color and the latest in makeup trends.

“I want either fuchsia or orange to match my dress,” a woman in her 50s said as she rummaged through a box of nail polish in an upscale beauty salon in Damascus. “Either one.”

It does not take long to realize that there is a disconnect between Damascus and the rest of Syria. With a mix of denial and fear, and occasionally even satisfaction at the government’s determination to stanch dissent, many Damascenes insist on another reality.

Sometimes jarring, sometimes reassuring, the detachment appears to have only deepened as the country plunges into some of its starkest international isolation since the Assad family took power in 1970 and as cities fall victim, one by one, to a ferocious crackdown by a government seemingly without direction.

Syria’s uprising has entered its sixth month, and protesters continue to defy the heavy-handed security forces that have, by the United Nations’ count, killed more than 2,200 people since mid-March. Sanctions have mounted, and once-friendly nations have criticized President Bashar al-Assad, urging him to reform and declaring that they have lost patience with his government’s attacks on its own people. Others have called on him to step down.

But Damascus, be it at the beauty salon, in its somnolent neighborhoods or in its fear-stricken mosques, remains the linchpin, a reality that even activists acknowledge. Until protests reach this capital, their thinking goes, Syria’s leadership will avoid the fate of its ossified equivalents in places like Egypt and Tunisia. And so far, Damascus — along with Aleppo, the nation’s second-largest city — has stayed firmly on the margins, as anger builds toward both cities from Syrians bearing the brunt of the uprising. “Trust me, everything is normal,” insisted a manicurist at the salon.

The salon, whose clientele includes the wives of the “rich and famous,” as one hairdresser described them, is just one of many examples that indicate how well Damascus has managed to shield itself during months of violence across the country. “At the beginning, there were some guys demonstrating for freedoms and rights, but it later turned out they were only trying to create a sectarian war,” the manicurist said. “The security forces are hunting them down, one by one. And they are almost done with them.”

Her version of events is one that is repeated daily by Syrian state news media and television channels close to the government: that the country is facing a foreign conspiracy to divide it and that security forces are battling armed Islamist extremists who are terrorizing residents and have killed 500 police officers and soldiers so far.

Even in neighborhoods where activists and protesters have reported demonstrations, life quickly returns to normal, as the government tries to rewrite what just happened, residents say. As early as dawn, they say, city employees clear the scenes, cleaning up bloodstains on the ground and painting over antigovernment graffiti.

So it went in Kfar Susseh, a wealthy neighborhood in Damascus where security forces wounded several protesters last week. According to residents, peaceful worshipers emerging from the Rifai mosque came under fire as they chanted a slogan calling for the fall of the government, a slogan uttered from Tunisia to Bahrain. They were chased through the neighborhood, caught and severely beaten as residents standing on their balconies pleaded with security forces to show them mercy. The protesters were later taken in military buses to detention centers.

During a visit two days after the unrest, the neighborhood was buzzing. Save for a sign declaring that the mosque was closed, there was no evidence of trouble. Unlike Homs and Hama, where the uprising has managed to knock down the wall of fear and allowed people to say what they want to say, no one here seemed to broach politics in the streets.

Pedestrians walked by, rarely glancing at the mosque, as if a long look would draw the kind of attention so long feared in a country notorious for its security apparatus. A woman leaned against the mosque’s iron fence. Across the street from her a sign read, “I am with Syria.” It, too, seemed too sensitive to stare at.

The poster was one of many on the streets here that are part of a campaign aimed at raising loyalty to the government. Not far away, another sign warned, “Be aware of those who are trying to instigate strife and attack them.”

At the salon, curiosity is subversive. The entrance of any new customer jolts the conversation back to orthodoxy; the choice of nail polish returns as a topic.

But in less-guarded moments, even here in a bastion of unreality, the reverberations of the uprising are felt. Terms once taboo in public in Syria come up in casual back-and-forth: opposition, sectarianism, demonstrations and the very word “uprising.” Behind closed doors, the idea that nothing is different gives way to fears that something has changed.

One manicurist said she was shocked when she accidentally learned that one of her closest friends opposed President Assad, who inherited power from his father in 2000. The manicurist and her friend are Christians, and, like other minority groups, they fear that a change of leadership would usher in a more conservative administration, perhaps delivering the country to Islamists bent on enforcing a tyranny of the Sunni Muslim majority. Christians often point to Iraq — where their very existence as a community is imperiled — to offer a notion of what can happen in times of violence and chaos.

As the rest of the country has become more conservative, Damascus, with its veneer of modernity and consumerism of the past decade, has become less so, they said.

“Ten years, 20 years ago, we never dared walk on streets wearing sleeveless shirts without being harassed,” the manicurist said. “Now, no one dares look at us.”

Though she declared herself to be one of Mr. Assad’s biggest fans, she acknowledged that reform has come too slowly and corruption has become too common. Her complaint was directed at no one in particular, least of all Mr. Assad, whose intentions she refused to question.

Across from her, a bride-to-be in her mid-20s said that she had not turned on the television for days. She did not want to stress herself out with the news of the uprising, she said, as activists here and elsewhere tried to spread the unrest to Damascus.

On the day before her wedding, several relatives called to ask about the situation in her neighborhood. “Everything was quiet,” she kept repeating to them. Curious, she finally relented and turned on the news to find out that Arabic-language satellite channels were reporting demonstrations in her street. There were none, she insisted.

“Everything is normal, just don’t watch Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya,” one of the manicurists said. “They are spreading lies. Watch only Syrian channels to learn the truth.” And off she went to discuss nail polish.

September 6th, 2011, 8:59 am

 

majedkhaldoon said:

Haytham Khouri
No one in the opposition calling for anything but united Syria,no one calling for division.
As for the army, what you are asking for, is impossible, those members of the army who are comitting crimes against the civilian,will be removed, to keep them in the army after the collapse of the regime is not possible.

We reached a state where the oppositions continue the demonstrations,and the regime continue the brutal oppression,no one knows for sure what to do next,but something has to be done to achieve progress,foreign intervention is not in the near future,Turkey is not going to loose soldiers without getting benefit,they can close the border,coninue to seek diplomatic measures, the economy will continue to deteriorate in Syria,those who are hoping for a coup,they are just hoping,it is not going to materialize.
I fully support revlon when he says that when chaos is prevailing, self defense is a right,and arming is necessary,for self defense, and to face Shabbiha(mercenaries)and security forces, the use of helicopters by the regime to crack down on demonstrations, will be met by imposing no fly zone,and that will precede foreign intervention , it is a mistake by the regime,the regime is getting desperate,it is possible that the desperate opposition may lead them to make harmful measures, such as blowing the oil refinary,bombing the TV station.
one thing we know,it is going to take time.

September 6th, 2011, 9:01 am

 

hsyrian said:

Dear Joshua

The title of your next comment :

500+ Reasons Why Western Officials do Not Want the Syrian Opposition says that they are already armed since day 1 .

http://www.sana.sy/eng/337/2011/09/06/367711.htm

The number of the martyrs in the attack carried out on Monday by an armed terrorist group against a bus transporting workers of Crude Oil Transportation Company near al-Fakhoura Roundabout in Homs, rose to 4 martyrs and 7 wounded.

Director of Homs National Hospital, Dr. Ghassan Tannous, said that the hospital received 11 emergency cases transferred from al-Ahli Specialized Hospital, four were martyred and one was in a critical condition.

Dr. Tannous pointed out that all the workers of the Company were targeted by an ambush set by an armed group while they were returning from their job.

He added that the wounded persons were taken to al-Ahli Hospital near the site of the accident at al-Zahra Alley in Homs, before they were transferred to the National Hospital, pointing out that the martyrs are Basem Mayhoub, Sha’allan Rahal, Nabeih Wardeh and Hiyam al-Ammouri.

The Director of the Hospital said that three members of the emergency crews affiliated to the Hospital were wounded with various injuries while they were performing their humanitarian duty, asserting that the armed terrorist groups clearly target the public buses and emergency crews.

He added that the hospital received on Monday 11 wounded persons from various areas in Homs targeted by gunmen

Disclaimers
Relying on fabricated video released on Youtube by MB Islamists for comment is like building on quicksands .

Don’t equate
muslims to Muslim Brotherhood
christians to Great Inquisition

September 6th, 2011, 9:20 am

 

Revlon said:

Seven Reasons Why Western Officials should Want the Defected Syrian Army Forces to Organise and Wage a Guerrilla Warfare against the Illegitimate Asad Forces.
Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

Supporting the burgeoning FSA and FOA to consolidate and provide them with advanced guerrilla warfare training, weapons, and reconnaissance has become vital to stem the tide of civilian human loss and expedite the demise of the fatally wounded regime.

Waiting for events to take its natural course carries the high moral price of watching people dying when they can be saved, prolonging the agony of the detained and displaced, and risking the evolution of difficult to predict and control, organised civil militias.
This eventuality could lead to the following unwanted scenarios, already outlined by Dr J Landis in this issue of SC, and personally edited to reflect my own personal views:

1. Syria may slip into civil war. This could produce the sort of blood bath that we saw in Lebanon and Iraq that would destabilize the region.
2. Regional capitals will be sucked into the civil war raising the possibility of a larger regional conflagration.
3. Pressure would grow on Western governments to intervene directly. In Iraq, US troops were present to mitigate the worst violence and stem ethnic cleansing and the proliferation of militias and banditry. Syria has no outside force present.
4. Waves of refugees would set out for Turkey and ultimately try to work their way into Europe to find jobs, safety and refugee status. Refugees are a major European fear, as most EU countries already feel overwhelmed by new Muslim immigrants who have caused the rise of Islamaphobia in the West.
5. Moral Leadership. The leadership that Western leaders have already shown in demanding that the Assad regime step down will make it hard for Western leaders not to show the same leadership in protecting vulnerable Syrians and committing troops – perhaps in the context of an international peace-keeping force.
6. If the rebellion takes up arms, the Syrian opposition leadership that is resident in the West will be less likely to have significant influence on the new order established in Syria. Washington and Western capitals will lose their indirect influence over future outcomes.
7. Islamists are more likely to assert leadership over a new Syria if the struggle for power is decided by opposition arms. Islamists have proven to be the more experienced fighters in the region. They may rise to leadership positions in Syria that they do not enjoy today if the end of the Assad regime is brought about by military means.
For these reasons, western leaders wishould not wait to see if sanctions applied to Syria will cause the regime to “collapse” on its own through defections or a coup.
Western leaders should also continue to add names and corporations to the sanctions list in an effort to keep moral among the Syrian opposition as high as possible. The demonstrators understand that they need Western support against the overwhelming force of the Syrian Army. The West must continue to wratchet up the pressure just short of military intervention in order to prevent the opposition from feeling abandoned or neglected, which could cause their activities to flag. Syrian activists in the West insist that sanctions will work on their own, while the movers on the ground maintain otherwise. They undoubtedly worry about many of the same concerns that Western leaders do.

September 6th, 2011, 9:43 am

 

Aboud said:

“Even in neighborhoods where activists and protesters have reported demonstrations, life quickly returns to normal, as the government tries to rewrite what just happened, residents say. As early as dawn, they say, city employees clear the scenes, cleaning up bloodstains on the ground and painting over antigovernment graffiti.”

Um…but that’s pretty much the case in Homs as well. See, I really dislike reports like this, where the reporter hasn’t traveled outside of Damascus to compare it with other cities. They think that if tires aren’t burning in the streets 24/7, and roads are barricaded off, then there is no revolution.

Mark off the areas and neighborhoods that have come out and demonstrated in Damascus, and then try to say with a straight face that Damascus has been immune from the demonstrations.

AP, at various times the menhebaks have said I’m actually American. Or Israeli. Or Lebanese. According to their brilliant analysis, I am the world’s first American Salafi-Lebanese-Zionist.

Heck, if Israel had planted a spy who made it all the way to the presidency, he couldn’t have done more damage to Syria’s standing than this idiot of an X-Box child.

September 6th, 2011, 9:45 am

 

Aboud said:

Another video of a prisoner being abused on a bus

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bb2zPvNdMjg&ref=nf

And you turds wonder why we hate you. Look at these QaQafing pieces of shit. Eight against one, and yet not one of them would have the guts to stand his ground if a bullet was fired at them.

When this is over, Hafez’s grave is going to be turned into a public urinal.

September 6th, 2011, 9:55 am

 

Akbar Palace said:

AP, at various times the menhebaks have said I’m actually American. Or Israeli. Or Lebanese. According to their brilliant analysis, I am the world’s first American Salafi-Lebanese-Zionist.

Aboud,

To me, you seem like a nice guy with a good sense-of-humor who is understandably upset with what is going on in Syria.

The fact that you are a practicing muslim doesn’t bother me any more than a practicing Christian, Jew or atheist.

Your “mistake” is your decision to blame President X-Box for what is going on in Syria.

Being a Jew myself, and seeing how so much of the Arab/Muslim world uses Zionist/NeoCon/Jew as epithets for those that don’t “toe the line”, I just want to say thanks to those here who can see through that specific BS story;)

Syria’s problems today are Syrian created. Not to say, every country has problems and every country is responsible for correcting them.

September 6th, 2011, 10:07 am

 

hsyrian said:

Dear Abughassan
You said:

The regime is obsessed with the idea that looking weak will speed its demise,that is why it refrained from meeting a major public request: the release of all political prisoners .

I reply :

The release of ALL the political prisoners is security suicide for the Syrian government under this actual turmoil and killings by terrorists:

Remember that the Egyptians ( Mubarak ) released the Muslim Brother Ayman Al Zawahiri after only 3 years in jail for the murder of President Sadat for him to create Al Qaeda.
The rest is history not hysteria .

and I add
The internal Opposition ( not MB ) is obsessed by the belief that they cannot talk to the government without appearing to be traitors to the bloody revolution of the MBs .

Disclaimer

Anybody calling someone who disagrees with him/her a menh… can rightly be called a Muslim Brotherhood propagandist even if he/she never wrote a single original sentence in Arabic.

The enemy of your enemy is your temporary ally not your lifetime friend.

September 6th, 2011, 10:13 am

 

Aboud said:

AP, but I’m not a practicing Muslim. I don’t pray, except when I go to a mosque before a demonstration. Fasting is something I do out of solidarity with my friends, relatives and the society I’m part of, all of whom are voluntarily taking on the hardships of fasting.

I don’t drink alcohol myself, but that’s just because I don’t like the stuff, and I don’t get upset if someone has a drink in my presence. Heck, my favorite uncle has the most extensive bar in Saudi Arabia.

I turned solidly and irrevocably against junior after the New Clock Massacre in mid April. That day, Homsis came out in numbers that dwarfed anything in Hama, and staged a sit in at the New Clock. That night, the shabeha turds came and massacred over a hundred people there, chasing them through the streets and gunning them down.

I was not there myself, I was visiting relatives in a nearby village at the time, but tell me, how can anyone stay neutral after something like that has happened in one’s city? Only a moral coward could still defend this disgraceful regime.

September 6th, 2011, 10:20 am

 

Aboud said:

“The release of ALL the political prisoners is security suicide for the Syrian government under this actual turmoil and killings by terrorists:”

Yes, because Najati Tayara is such a hard core Al-Qaeeda terrorist. Imprisoning 15,000 people just for demonstrating is a bigger security risk to the regime, as every single one of those people have relatives and friends who will stop at nothing to get them out, even if it means burning down every Alawite village in Syria.

September 6th, 2011, 10:22 am

 

Revlon said:

Officer Zaher AbdelKareem defect along with a unit of 11 soldiers.
– He confirmed massacres cited by Mr Al Bakkour
– He reported an ambush against Shabbeha near Mhardeh in response to their of assassination of Activist Abdessamd Isa and other civilians and attacking villages of Kirnaz, Kifrnabooda

September 6th, 2011, 10:30 am

 

Akbar Palace said:

… I’m not a practicing Muslim.

I stand corrected. Are you saying it is possible that non-practicing muslims (aka “seculars”) are also not X-Box supporters? All this time I thought those against X-Box were al-Queda or MB.

Heck, my favorite uncle has the most extensive bar in Saudi Arabia.

I thought drinking was totally forbidden in SA. When I was in UAE, they had nightclubs/bars which seemed to be for the non-UAE crowd, and in Kuwait, I don’t think I saw any pubs at all. This was in the late 90s. I enjoyed going to the malls in the UAE just to see all the long white robes.

September 6th, 2011, 10:33 am

 

ann said:

European markets plunge over fresh recession and debt fears

06-09-2011

http://www.muslimnews.co.uk/news/news.php?article=20774

Do you think the EU and US would be dumb enough to invade Syria?

September 6th, 2011, 10:37 am

 

Revlon said:

Thug One forces burried two large truckloads, each estimated to hold 100 of dead bodies in mass graves in the village of Tranjeh, in Qnaitra Governorate.

The operation was done two weeks ago at night. The following day, the owner owner noticed that his land was dug out and discovered burried bodies.

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom

أموي مباشر #syria ◄ حــــــرائـــــــــر مـعـضـمـيـة الــشـام ::وردنا الان ومؤكد 100% قامت قوى الامن بدفن برادين مليئين بجثث المتظاهرين حيث تم التأكد من أن كل براد يحتوي على 100 جثة على الاقل تم دفن البرادات في قرية طرنجة في محافظة القنيطرة و للعلم هذه القرية حدودية مع اسرائيل والحفر فيها ممنوع الا بالتنسيق مع جيش العدو مما يوحي ان عملية الدفن تمت بعلم جيش العدو الاسرائيلي تمت عملية الدفن يوم الثلاثاء الماضي الموافق 30 – 08 – 2011 تم قطع التيار الكهربائي لمدة ثلاث ساعات ليلا وفوحئ صحاب الارض التي تم الدفن فيها في يوم الاربعاء ان ارضه محفورة وحين تحققهم اكتشفت هذه المقبرة الجماعية والقرية الى هذه الساعة مطوقة امنينا بشكل كامل اكرر ان هذا الخبر اكيد 100% وسنسعى بكل جهدنا لتأمين صور لهذه المقبرة لكن الامر صعب جدا بسبب التشديد الامني حول القرية منقول عن ميداني حر
11 hours ago

September 6th, 2011, 10:40 am

 

Revlon said:

Misyaf. Six passengers were abducted when their bus was intercepted by military uniform dressed armed group accompanied with Syrian TV mobile Unit.
Today all six were reported dead.

of حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom
أموي مباشر #syria ◄ مصياف |اختطف سبعة أشخاص من حافلة تابعة لشركة الخليج للنقل من طريق مصياف حلب في كفرزيتا في حماه , منهم شاب من دير ماما وشاب من سكان مصياف وهو محمد محيي الدين الحوري تم الخطف من قبل أشخاص يرتدون الزي العسكري ومعهم سيارة تابعة لهيئة الإذاعة والتلفزيون واليوم الإثنين أتى خبر قتل جميع المختطفين علما أن هذه المنطقة وعلى طول الخط , منطقة مليئة بالعناصر الأمنية وعناصر الجيش فنحن نحمل وفقا لذلك أجهزة الأمن والجيش المسؤولية الكاملة لهذا الفعل الإجرامي الشنيع
12 hours ago

September 6th, 2011, 10:50 am

 
 

Aboud said:

AP, drinking is forbidden in Saudi Arabia, but alcohol is always smuggled in.

A UAE national can go into a bar in the UAE, they just can’t wear their national dress there. No khaliji clothing, caps, flipflops or male shorts in those bars. Hey, every place has a dress code 🙂

September 6th, 2011, 10:56 am

 

Revlon said:

President of Damascus Declaration in Australia, Mr Ashraf AlMiqdad: Foreign military intervention in Syria has become a necessity.
معارض سوري: التدخل الدولي عسكريا الحل الوحيد للأزمة في سوريا
القاهرة: هيثم التابعي – صحيفة الشرق الأوسط
2011/09/06
http://all4syria.info/web/archives/26410

أعرب المعارض السوري أشرف المقداد، رئيس «إعلان دمشق» في أستراليا، عن اعتقاده أن التدخل الدولي العسكري في سوريا أصبح حلا لا بديل عنه، مبررا موقفه بقوله إن النظام السوري يحتكر السلاح، وبالتالي لا رادع له، موضحا أن السيناريو البديل هو دعم انشقاق واسع في الجيش لإسقاط نظام الأسد دون الحاجة لتسليح مدنيين، كاشفا عن أن ضباطا كبارا بالجيش السوري أعربوا عن نيتهم الانشقاق حال تعرض الجيش لضربات جوية حاسمة.
ويرفض المقداد، الذي يعد أبرز المعارضين السوريين في الخارج، فكرة تسليح الثوار، حيث أبدى تخوفه من انتشار السلاح بيد الثوار، وهو ما قال إنه سيؤدي إلى معضلات جمة بعد انتهاء الثورة، ويعتبر المقداد أن الوقت سلاح كبير ومهم في صالح الثورة لا النظام، حيث أوضح أن الثورة ذات الأشهر الستة حققت انتصارات كبيرة على نظام الأسد.
وصف المقداد الثورة السورية بالبركان المتفجر الذي لا يزال يحمل المزيد من النار بداخله، حيث قال: «إن الثورة السورية ليست شعلة تلتهب ثم تنطفئ، بل هي بركان لا يزال يتفجر بالمزيد»، فهو يرى أن الخط البياني للثورة في تصاعد مستمر خلال شهورها الستة لتنتشر عبر كل الأراضي السورية، مضيفا أنه على الرغم من القمع فإن الشعب السوري صامد. وقال المقداد: «كلما زادت جرائم النظام، زاد صمود الثوار بشكل أكبر».
ويؤمن المقداد بأن الحل الوحيد المتاح للخروج من الأزمة في سوريا هو التدخل الدولي في سوريا، حيث قال: «النظام السوري لن يتوقف أبدا عن القمع والقتل والتنكيل، ببساطة لأنه لا يوجد ما يردعه بطريقة سلمية»، وتابع قائلا: «هناك حلان لا ثالث لهما، إما تسليح الثورة أو التدخل الأجنبي».
وبرر المقداد تشجيعه للتدخل الأجنبي بأن النظام السوري هو الذي يحتكر السلاح على الأرض، ولا يوجد من يحمل السلاح في الشارع غيره، وبالتالي سيظل يقتل وينكل بالشعب السوري حتى تنتهي الثورة، لأنه هو الوحيد القادر على الحسم. وأضاف المقداد أن مشكلات تسليح الثوار قد تثير أزمات بعد انتهاء الثورات، مثل ما يحدث في ليبيا الآن من وجود الأسلحة في أيدي الجميع، وتابع قائلا: «أفضل شيء هو التدخل الخارجي.. هناك مجازر مهولة لم ينقشع الغبار عنها حتى الآن.. شخصيا أنا أصلي من أجل أن يتدخل الغرب عسكريا».
ورسم المقداد خطة أولية للتدخل الأجنبي، حيث قال: «لا بد أن يبدأ بقصف جوي على مراكز الجيش السوري وتجمعاته المنتشرة بطول البلاد وعرضها»، وهو ما يعتقد أنه سيؤدي إلى انسحاب الجيش باتجاه دمشق لحمايتها، وبالتالي تحرير تلك المدن من الجيش السوري الموجود بها، مما سيسمح لتشكيل أماكن آمنة يمكن للجنود والضباط الانشقاق إليها.
وتوقع المقداد أن ملايين السوريين سيخرجون في مظاهرات ضخمة في كل المدن السورية حال توقف الجيش السوري عن القمع والقتل والتنكيل، وأوضح المقداد أن نتائج القصف الجوي ستكون مفيدة جدا لإحداث انشقاقات كبيرة في الجيش السوري، وتابع بقوله إنه «على ضوء نتائج تلك الضربات الجوية، يمكن تقييم الحاجة لتدخل أرضي لحامية المواطنين».
وعن الرفض الشعبي للتدخل الأجنبي، يعتقد المقداد، الذي ينحدر من مدينة درعا، مهد الانتفاضة السورية، أن الشعب السوري رفض التدخل الأجنبي في بداية الثورة، ولكنه قال: «الآن الكل يطالب بالتدخل الدولي، لقد رفع المتظاهرون لافتات بذلك في الرستن وفي درعا وفي ريف دمشق».
واعتبر المقداد العقوبات الدولية الأخيرة على نظام بشار مؤثرة، وإن كانت غير رادعة بالشكل الكافي، حيث أوضح أن المعارضين لاحظوا في الفترة الأخيرة وجود تقطع في دفع مرتبات الشبيحة، كما أن الكثير من الشبيحة توقفوا عن العمل في حلب وبعض المدن الأخرى التي يسيطر عليها الشبيحة، فالنظام في مأزق اقتصادي حقيقي، ويعتقد المقداد أن مقاطعة الغرب لشراء البترول السوري سيشكل علامة إضعاف فارقة لدمشق، وتابع قائلا: «العقوبات ستضع مصير النظام في يد غيره، وسيقصر دعمه الاقتصادي على إيران، وهو ما سيضع إيران تحت ضغط كبير، وربما تتخلى عن دمشق بمرور الوقت»، لكنه استدرك قائلا: «لا شيء سلمي يردع نظام بشار الآن، لقد اتخذ قرارا بالقتل ولن يتراجع عنه أبدا، خاصة أن الثورة سلمية».
وكشف المقداد، نقلا عن ضباط قال إنهم قادة كبار بالجيش العربي السوري، عن أن قيادات الجيش ليس لديها حافز للانشقاق حاليا، ولكنه استدرك قائلا: «ضباط كبار أوضحوا أنهم سينشقون فورا حال تعرض الجيش لضربات جوية حاسمة»، وتابع قائلا: «هم يدركون أن النظام السوري لا يزال قويا وقادرا عل سحق الثورة، وبالتالي فإن انشقاقهم حاليا يعرضهم وأسرهم لخطر داهم»، لكنه أضاف: «البعض أكد أن فرقا كاملة ستنشق في تلك الحالة، لأنها ستتوفر على ملاذ آمن للهرب بعكس الوضع الحالي». ونقل المقداد عن ضباط سوريين أن الجيش السوري يفتقد للمؤن والإمدادات من ملابس وأطعمة ومياه، حيث قال: «الجنود يطلبون الأكل والشرب من الأهالي.. هم في وضع مزر».
وأوضح المقداد أن الانشقاقات في صفوف الجيش السوري تراجعت إلى حد كبير، نظرا لغلق الحدود الأردنية والتركية، وبالتالي قلت الانشقاقات في الجيش السوري وتكاد تكون توقفت، لأن الكل يدرك أن الخروج من سوريا مستحيل في الوقت الراهن.

September 6th, 2011, 11:06 am

 

beaware said:

Here is Adnan Bakkour’s second video, where he says Syrian regime reports that he was coerced are a lie.
31 August 2011
http://twitter.com/#!/DavidKenner/status/109302480843702275

A R A B I C A ارابيكا

http://www.worldcrunch.com/arabica-daily-shot-what-arab-world-sayinghearingsharing/3702
By Kristen Gillespie

VANISHED
Syrian security forces are conducting arrests and house-to-house searches seeking any information related to the whereabouts of Hama’s Attorney General, Adnan Bakkour, who announced his resignation last week in a video posted on YouTube. Bakkour condemned the Syrian regime and cited the slaughter of civilians in Hama as the reason for his resignation. The state media machine immediately reported that Bakkour was forced to make the statement after having been kidnapped by the supposed “armed terrorist groups” funded by shadowy external enemies behind the uprising. Activist Mohammed Homsi told Al Arabiya that Bakkour is almost certainly outside Syria given the mortal danger he now faces. Al Sharq Al Awsat paper reports that authorities suspect Bakkour is hiding in Hama.

…….
Some Syrian websites quoted a Syrian source on Tuesday saying that Hama Attorney General Adnan Bakkour have been freed by a Military operation in al-Rasten city and was moved into secured official place. This news has not been confirmed officially yet.
http://www.dp-news.com/en/detail.aspx?articleid=95594

September 6th, 2011, 11:37 am

 

ann said:

*** Good News For Our ISRAEL LOVERS on This Blog ***

Turkey suspends defense trade with Israel

Ankara’s rhetoric becomes harsher as PM Erdogan warns his country will enforce more sanctions on Israel in wake of Palmer Report

09.06.2011

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4118496,00.html

Israel-Turkey crisis escalating: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday that more sanctions against Israel could follow the expulsion of Jerusalem’s ambassador and the suspension of military ties.

Erdogan said that pending the decision on such sanctions, Turkey will suspend its trade ties with Israel: “Trade ties, military ties regarding defence industry ties, we are completely suspending them. This process will be followed by different measures,” Erdogan told reporters in Ankara.

It was later reported by the Wall Street Journal that a spokesman for Erdogan said the prime minister had been referring in his remarks only to trade in defense goods, and not to trade in general.

Turkish Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan said on Monday that Ankara would do nothing “for now” to change its economic relationship with Israel.

According to the WSJ report, the halt in trade will only apply to commercial ties between the Turkish government and army with Israel, which mainly involve Israeli security exports. Such deals are estimated to be worth several million dollars a year – a tiny fracture of Israeli exports to Turkey which totaled $13 billion in 2010.

The clarification is in line with statements made by a senior Turkish business official to his Israeli counterpart. “Erdogan’s statement in Turkish specifically addressed commercial ties between the armies. Erdogan did not mention business ties in general and this issue was based on a faulty translation of his remarks to English and French,” he said.

The Turkish official added: “Erdogan cannot suspend all commercial ties even if he wanted to. With all due respect, Turkey is a democracy and Mr. Erdogan cannot tells businessmen where they should work, not unless the Turkish parliament declares Israel an enemy state, and there is no such proposal on the table.”

Erdogan also noted that Turkey would be stepping up its naval patrols in the Eastern Mediterranean: “The Eastern Mediterranean is not a strange place to us… our ships will be seen much more frequently in those waters.”

The Turkish leader said Tuesday that other Israeli diplomats who were expelled form Turkey along with the Israeli ambassador, have until Wednesday to leave the country.

The move followed Israel’s refusal to apologize for the deadly raid on a Gaza-bound flotilla, which left nine pro-Palestinian Turkish activists dead. Erdogan described the raid as “savagery” and accused Israel of acting like “a spoiled boy” in the region.

Israel has expressed regret for the loss of lives, but remains adamant that no official apology for the naval operation will be issued.

The Palmer Report, commissioned by the United Nations, was dismissed by Ankara as biased.

Turkey has already announced that it will not back down from its demand for an apology and said it would seek legal recourse against Israel with the International Court of Justice.

Asked about Erdogan’s remarks, an Israeli government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said in response that “Israel does not want to see further deterioration in its relationship with Turkey.”

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak, in remarks said before Erdogan’s announcement, said: “Israel and Turkey are the two strongest and in many respects the most important countries in the Mideast.

“We have our differences, but in differences too it is important that both sides act using their heads and not their gut — that will be best for us all and best for regional stability and restoring things.”

September 6th, 2011, 11:50 am

 

873 said:

Get ready for the melodramatic explosion somewhere, somehow, to derail the Sept 20 Declaration of a Palestinian State at UN. Another False flag on US for 911? (blamed on Syria, or better yet Syrian & Iranian-backed Palestinians trained by Hezbollah)? Instant casus belli to justify NATO attack on all the Zionist-Illuminati enemies at once? Hezb, Hamas, Syria, Iran etc. The psychos are on the march.

JDL fundamentalists recruiting for more vigilante terrorism:
http://www.liguedefensejuive.com/voyage-de-solidarite-militante-en-judee-samarie/

VOYAGE DE SOLIDARITE MILITANTE EN JUDEE SAMARIE
Publié le 3 septembre 2011 par administrateur
La LDJ organise du 19 au 25 septembre , un voyage de
solidarité avec nos frères israéliens vivant sur la terre de nos ancêtres de
Judée et Samarie.

Ce voyage est réservé aux militants ayant une expérience militaire : le but de cette expédition est de prêter main forte à nos frères face aux agressions des
occupants palestiniens et donc de renforcer les dispositifs de sécurité des
villes juives de Judée et Samarie .

September 6th, 2011, 12:11 pm

 

hsyrian said:

Jihadists plot to take over Libya
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/sep/4/jihadists-plot-to-take-over-libya/

U.S. official familiar with intelligence reports on the region said there are concerns that some LIFG members remain committed to al Qaeda and others may be temporarily renouncing their ties to the terrorist group for “show.”

A defense official familiar with jihadist strategy said Islamists likely will emerge in power from the turmoil expected after the demise of the Gadhafi regime and the West will be partly to blame.

“We’re helping pave the way for them” through NATO airstrikes and other support, he said.

About 1,000 jihadists are operating covertly in Libya, Noman Benotman, a former Libyan al Qaeda member, told The Washington Times in March.

According to a translation of the forum exchanges, Libyan Islamists view the fall of Tripoli to rebels as the initial phase of a battle to take over the country.

Jihadists were urged to prepare for the next stage in the battle: taking on secular rebels and the interim National Transitional Council, sometimes called the Transitional National Council, the secular political organization that is mainly pro-democratic.

The jihadists want to set up an Islamist state ruled by Shariah law.

September 6th, 2011, 12:15 pm

 

homsi said:

Revlon @ 128

Hi Revlon and thank you for your question

I usually don’t like to comment in here and many reasons behind it::

1- I can see how empty and endless the discussions could be
2-my English is not good
3-i don’t see a lot of people who comment to express their views but rather I see propagandists spreading lies
4-the absent of the national opposition members in this blog make me skip most of the comments ,i cant believe it that people here pray for foreign invasion to their own land , i am afraid that i think you may be one of them Revlon
5-.the cyberbullying that some commenters practice (But i will answer your question this time:
I don’t know about Damascus and Dara but my personal believe tells me they were peaceful ,i almost cried when i saw the very first demonstration in Damascus , it was a great day to me !! it was national peaceful civilized demonstration , it turned up that it was only a dream .the revolution has revealed its real face in Homs ,demonstrations never been peaceful here, never ,if you live in Homs you would know but off course you will never admitted online .
I am not sure that the western world know that the demonstrators ARE armed already or not but what i am sure about is the western world pressing the demonstrators more and more to hid their weapons.

September 6th, 2011, 12:21 pm

 

Iggy said:

I am not a Syrian but from what I have read and heard on non-mainstream websites, what is happening in Syria is an armed insurrection supported by the West, the Saudis and the Turks. So it surprises me that Joshua can make the claim that the West is not meddling in Syria. All I hear in the Western press is a lot of bad stuff about the Syrian regime but nothing about Bahrain where there is genuine uprising by the majority Shia population. This seems to have all the hallmarks of the destabilisation which happened in Libya.

Libya was not a genuine revolution. There was small uprising but it was hijacked by the West and salafi groups. The West even brought in mercenaries from abroad. The majority of Libyans still supported Gaddafi, but they couldn’t withstand the force of NATO bombing (over 20,000 sorties) as well as their Islamist proxies.

The West, the Saudis and the Turks seem to want regime change in Syria. They want to break Syria’s alliance with Iran by installing a Sunni dominated government. My message to Syrians is: stay united and keep foreign powers out. If NATO or the Turks were to come in, Syria will be ruined.

September 6th, 2011, 12:26 pm

 

Aboud said:

“demonstrations never been peaceful here, never”

That’s a lie, I’ve been to numerous demonstrations right here in Homs. I’ve never, ever seen so much as a knife flashed.

If you have proof to the contrary, by all means provide some.

I’ve just heard details of the Arab League initiative. I’m impressed, it’s something I believe everyone can get behind. It calls for genuine reforms and dialogue, something junior will never carry out of course. Free and fair elections might as well be Armageddon to the Baathists.

September 6th, 2011, 12:26 pm

 

873 said:

153. ann said:
Study: 38% of Europeans have mental disorders! lol!
09.06.2011, 10:22 AM EDT

The above study coordinates with articles released today across US media that “half of all Americans will have mental illness in their lifetimes”. Either the pharmaceutical corps are angling for expanded markets, or the neo-Bolsheviks are trying to establish precedent for legislation deeming political dissenters be labelled mental cases, hence prospects for incarceration, on the Gulag model. As the APA is pivotal in the torture procedures at detainee centers in Gitmo and M.E. black sites, I’d also consider the latter possibility. The biggest FEMA detainee camp in USA is for ‘rehabilitating mental disorders’. Holds 2 million, located in Alaska.

September 6th, 2011, 12:27 pm

 

Abu Umar said:

25. ss said:

” history starting from the killing of the grandson of Mohammad PUH by Yazid and his gangs who him and his father are held up highly by Sunni while the grandkids of our prophit were BEHEADED. So terrorism is not new news for the Sunni radicals, actually it is a profession and plenty of examples exist even in the recent history of how professionals they are.”

Bashar and his thugs are the descendants of Yazeed and why don’t you mention what Ali ibn Abi Talib did to the forefathers of the “Alawis”?!

September 6th, 2011, 12:31 pm

 

Dale Andersen said:

Study: 38% of women named ANN worldwide have mental disorders! And 42% of them have lesbian tendencies!

Link to the research to follow soon…

September 6th, 2011, 12:31 pm

 

Akbar Palace said:

C-Spann’s NewZ Network

*** Good News For Our ISRAEL LOVERS on This Blog ***

Spann,

Did you read this part of your article? Maybe you should have put it in bold:

It was later reported by the Wall Street Journal that a spokesman for Erdogan said the prime minister had been referring in his remarks only to trade in defense goods, and not to trade in general.

Turkish Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan said on Monday that Ankara would do nothing “for now” to change its economic relationship with Israel.

According to the WSJ report, the halt in trade will only apply to commercial ties between the Turkish government and army with Israel, which mainly involve Israeli security exports. Such deals are estimated to be worth several million dollars a year – a tiny fracture of Israeli exports to Turkey which totaled $13 billion in 2010.

Apparently, Israel’s economic ties with Turkey fars exceeds that of Great Britain…

http://www.theisraelproject.org/site/apps/nlnet/content2.aspx?c=hsJPK0PIJpH&b=883997&ct=8616179

September 6th, 2011, 12:38 pm

 

Mango said:

Seven Reasons Why the Western Officials Do not want that the Syrian Opposition has taken up the Arms:
1 In the technological plan of revolution does not provide such point.
2 Plan provides use of the special weapon from the specialized trained confidential agents instead of to whom has got
3 to avoid the Probability of an exit from under control of a situation of development of event.
4 For cast between the armed confidential agents from Iraq, Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan, Israel., Saudi Arabia, Egypt and even Micronesia.
5 For preservation of opposition from justice.
6 For correctness preservation of the sanction and the intervention reasons in internal affairs.
7 For the purpose of training to listen and carry out only the roles in collective.

September 6th, 2011, 1:00 pm

 

beaware said:

Syrian Revolution Facebook group calls for “international observers”
06/09/2011
By Paula Astatih
http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=26483
Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat – The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group – which has more than 276,000 members and which has become a major online center for news of the Syrian revolution– has now launched an extensive online campaign calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria in order to monitor the situation on the ground. This campaign, officially named “the week of calling for international monitors to enter Syrian cities” has also called for an intensification of the peaceful protests that are taking place in Syria.

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group is calling for the Syrian protesters to take 6 clear and specific steps as part of this campaign to protect the Syrian revolution:

The first step calls for the protesters to continue their hard work, in addition to focusing on spreading pro-revolutionary literature and publication.

The second step focuses upon generating support for the public campaign that is being carried out by the [Syrian] political activists and which this week is promoting the idea of international observers being sent to Syria; this will be implemented via Syrian protesters raising banners and slogans during the demonstrations calling for [international observers to be sent to Syria]. In addition to this, the campaign is also urging foreign states to push through a UN Security Council resolution calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria to monitor the situation there.

The third step calls for the protesters to continue working to secure the release of Syrian detainees.

The fourth step calls for Syrian demonstrators to expand the sit-ins and demonstrations taking place outside of Syrian embassies in foreign countries.

The fifth step calls for the Syrian protesters to focus upon recording the situation on the ground, and the crimes of the Syrian regime, via accurate photography as well as live-broadcast.

The sixth and final step calls for the launch of an online campaign – utilizing Arab and foreign websites –urging people to support the Syrian revolution and its legitimate demands.

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group members have stressed that this online campaign should work to raise awareness in the Syrian street. They emphasize that calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria does not mean accepting [foreign] military intervention in the country, particularly as some Syrians fail to differentiate between the Syrian oppositions’ calls for international intervention, the imposition of a no-fly zone, military strikes, and other forms of foreign intervention.

A Syrian political activist, posting his views on the “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook page, stressed that “the best thing for the [Syrian] revolution today is for calls to be made for international observers to be dispatched to Syria, in order to expose the crimes of the regime, embarrass Russia and China internationally, and ensure that the peaceful protests continue to expand and intensify. The presence of these international observers on the ground will guarantee the security of the protesters, reduce the crimes of the regime and protect the lives of civilians.”

Another Syrian political activist stressed that the presence of international observers on the ground in Syria “will embarrass the [Syrian] regime” adding that “the international community will listen to these observers (if their presence is established in the correct manner), whilst this will also ensure the safety of the people, allowing them to take part in demonstrations without fear of attack, for any such aggression will be recorded and those responsible held to account.”

The same Syrian political activist added “this [the presence of international observers on the ground] will, to a large-extent, limit the ability of the regime to suppress the people and will [also] ensure the intensification of the protest movement.” He also stressed that “if the [Syrian] regime rejects a UN resolution in this regard then it will have thrown away the final fig leaf [covering its crimes], particularly as we are not calling for [foreign] military intervention or a commission of inquiry, rather we are only calling for international observers to monitor our protests and the actions of the regime.”

As part of the Facebook discussion commenting on the plan of action outlined above, Ali al-Naiemi warned that the Syrian revolution has reached an extremely dangerous stage, namely a stage of “boredom and marking time.” He posted that “demonstrators are taking to the street daily…whilst the [Syrian] army is comprehensively siding with the regime and we can see the collapse of our economy with our own eyes”. He added that “the revolution is under threat of being undone by critical stagnation.”

Al-Naiemi added that what is required is for the Syrian revolution “to seek to establish a military wing that includes military elements who have defected from the [Syrian] army as we may need them in the future.”

For his part, another “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook member, Karam al-Arabi, called for the Syrian revolution to move towards a stage of “revolution by [throwing] stones.” He said “we must pelt the partisan and security facilities that support this autocratic regime – as well as the media outlets that support them – with stones, whilst also maintaining the nonviolence of the revolution by not attacking anybody or carrying weapons.”

Another Syrian activist, who posted his thoughts anonymously, stressed the importance of “forming a revolutionary framework and establishing a [revolutionary] leadership committee”, stressing that “political action in this regard has been delayed and has not kept pace with events on the Syrian street.”

The Syrian activist added “the [Syrian] opposition must politically unite…the revolution needs a new plan of action which prevents the situation on the ground from stagnating, as this [stagnation] represents the major threat to the revolution

September 6th, 2011, 1:10 pm

 

beaware said:

Tehran looking beyond Al-Assad- Iraqi source
06/09/2011
By Ma’ad Fayad
http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=26484
London, Asharq Al-Awsat – A senior member of Iraq’s National Alliance – between Nuri al-Maliki’s State of Law coalition, Ammar al-Hakim’s Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq [ISCI], and the Sadrist movement led by radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr – has revealed that “Iran is playing a major role” in delaying the political process in Iraq. He added that “the Iranian leadership views the al-Iraqiya bloc (that is led by Iyad Allawi) as a Sunni-bloc which represents a genuine threat to their presence in Iraq. Moreover, there is a red-line in place with regards to Allawi holding an influential position in Iraq.”

The senior ISCI member also told Asharq Al-Awsat that “Tehran is very concerned about the fate of the Syrian regime, and it wants to move the area of conflict to Iraq and the Arab Gulf region” adding that “in the event of the collapse of the Bashar al-Assad regime, Tehran will concentrate on Baghdad as an alternative to Damascus.”
more…

September 6th, 2011, 1:13 pm

 

beaware said:

Syria protesters resolute, says Qatar emir
05/09/2011
http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=26462

Doha, (AFP)- Qatar’s emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani said Monday that Syrians are determined to keep protesting against President Bashar al-Assad’s regime despite a deadly crackdown.

“The killing is nearly daily. But it’s clear that the Syrian people will not turn back on their demands,” Sheikh Hamad told pan-Arab news channel Al-Jazeera.

“The question now is how to get out of this domestic standoff in Syria,” he said.

In August, Sheikh Hamad criticised Syria’s use of force against protesters demanding democratic change, describing the approach as fruitless and urging serious reforms.

more..

September 6th, 2011, 1:18 pm

 

beaware said:

Revolution no boon to the Copts
Monday, Sep. 5, 2011
By DOUG BANDOW
http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20110905db.html
WASHINGTON — Ugly reality has dashed the high hopes of the “Arab Spring.” In Egypt the fall of Hosni Mubarak has encouraged religious intolerance and persecution, especially against the Coptic Christian community.

Mubarak ruled for three decades. Among his victims were Coptic Christians, who make up around 10 percent of the population. They predate Islam, but today are a disadvantaged and increasingly threatened minority.

While the “government does not actively persecute or repress Christians, a prejudicial legal framework has created a permissive environment that allows Egyptian officials and private individuals to discriminate against Christians freely and with impunity,” noted Michele Dunne of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
more..

September 6th, 2011, 1:22 pm

 

hsyrian said:

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group –
which has more than 276,000 members and which has become a major online center for news of the Syrian revolution–
has now launched an extensive online campaign calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria in order to monitor the situation on the ground.

Don’t forget that the OWNER of this “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook account leads Sweden’s chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood .
His name is فداء الدين طريف السيد عيسى
Fida’ ad-Din Tariif as-Sayyid `Isa,

http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=9340

Can somebody shows a mention of this information on this Facebook site ?

September 6th, 2011, 1:33 pm

 

Tara said:

It is quite disappointing that there is no appreciation of art among the mnhebaks.  No one responded to my last post.  I guess oppression does suppress creativity in Bashar’s worshipers. Even though it appears that I am conversing with myself, just as a sequel to my previous post, see below (not that I really care about Ayatollahs, Sunni sheiks, Rabbis,  or patriarchs… They all use religion for political gains in my opinion.. )

http://abna.ir/data.asp?lang=3&Id=254387

I know you guys out there can’t wait to see it…..  As I am sure you all know Majid Majidi is beyond brilliant.  I can never forget a scene in one of his movies when the raindrops wash away the footprint in the mud as if to erase painful memories..

Of course, I am not expecting any mnhebak to have the same appreciation..

September 6th, 2011, 2:29 pm

 

Aboud said:

I wonder why the menhebak @172 is so scared of the idea of international observers. It sounds like an excellent idea. If the demonstrations are armed like the menhebak claims, international and unbiased observers could see that for themselves.

September 6th, 2011, 2:42 pm

 

Aboud said:

And FYI @172, the admins at Syrian Revolution have been the leading voices for a non-sectarian, non violent revolution. Everyday they go out of their way to convince people that armed revolt is not the way to go.

I dare you to show one post where the admins try to peddle a sectarian, violent uprising, or an MB agenda. Just one post. Go ahead.

This is why the menhebaks have completely lost the media war. Their ineptness in all matters media related almost makes one feel sorry for them.

September 6th, 2011, 2:57 pm

 

Tara said:

Syrian Revolution Facebook group calls for “international observers”
06/09/2011
By Paula Astatih

http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=26483

Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat – The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group – which has more than 276,000 members and which has become a major online center for news of the Syrian revolution– has now launched an extensive online campaign calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria in order to monitor the situation on the ground. This campaign, officially named “the week of calling for international monitors to enter Syrian cities” has also called for an intensification of the peaceful protests that are taking place in Syria.

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group is calling for the Syrian protesters to take 6 clear and specific steps as part of this campaign to protect the Syrian revolution:

The first step calls for the protesters to continue their hard work, in addition to focusing on spreading pro-revolutionary literature and publication.

The second step focuses upon generating support for the public campaign that is being carried out by the [Syrian] political activists and which this week is promoting the idea of international observers being sent to Syria; this will be implemented via Syrian protesters raising banners and slogans during the demonstrations calling for [international observers to be sent to Syria]. In addition to this, the campaign is also urging foreign states to push through a UN Security Council resolution calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria to monitor the situation there.

The third step calls for the protesters to continue working to secure the release of Syrian detainees.

The fourth step calls for Syrian demonstrators to expand the sit-ins and demonstrations taking place outside of Syrian embassies in foreign countries.

The fifth step calls for the Syrian protesters to focus upon recording the situation on the ground, and the crimes of the Syrian regime, via accurate photography as well as live-broadcast.

The sixth and final step calls for the launch of an online campaign – utilizing Arab and foreign websites –urging people to support the Syrian revolution and its legitimate demands.

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group members have stressed that this online campaign should work to raise awareness in the Syrian street. They emphasize that calling for international observers to be dispatched to Syria does not mean accepting [foreign] military intervention in the country, particularly as some Syrians fail to differentiate between the Syrian oppositions’ calls for international intervention, the imposition of a no-fly zone, military strikes, and other forms of foreign intervention.

A Syrian political activist, posting his views on the “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook page, stressed that “the best thing for the [Syrian] revolution today is for calls to be made for international observers to be dispatched to Syria, in order to expose the crimes of the regime, embarrass Russia and China internationally, and ensure that the peaceful protests continue to expand and intensify. The presence of these international observers on the ground will guarantee the security of the protesters, reduce the crimes of the regime and protect the lives of civilians.”

Another Syrian political activist stressed that the presence of international observers on the ground in Syria “will embarrass the [Syrian] regime” adding that “the international community will listen to these observers (if their presence is established in the correct manner), whilst this will also ensure the safety of the people, allowing them to take part in demonstrations without fear of attack, for any such aggression will be recorded and those responsible held to account.”

The same Syrian political activist added “this [the presence of international observers on the ground] will, to a large-extent, limit the ability of the regime to suppress the people and will [also] ensure the intensification of the protest movement.” He also stressed that “if the [Syrian] regime rejects a UN resolution in this regard then it will have thrown away the final fig leaf [covering its crimes], particularly as we are not calling for [foreign] military intervention or a commission of inquiry, rather we are only calling for international observers to monitor our protests and the actions of the regime.”

As part of the Facebook discussion commenting on the plan of action outlined above, Ali al-Naiemi warned that the Syrian revolution has reached an extremely dangerous stage, namely a stage of “boredom and marking time.” He posted that “demonstrators are taking to the street daily…whilst the [Syrian] army is comprehensively siding with the regime and we can see the collapse of our economy with our own eyes”. He added that “the revolution is under threat of being undone by critical stagnation.”

Al-Naiemi added that what is required is for the Syrian revolution “to seek to establish a military wing that includes military elements who have defected from the [Syrian] army as we may need them in the future.”

For his part, another “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook member, Karam al-Arabi, called for the Syrian revolution to move towards a stage of “revolution by [throwing] stones.” He said “we must pelt the partisan and security facilities that support this autocratic regime – as well as the media outlets that support them – with stones, whilst also maintaining the nonviolence of the revolution by not attacking anybody or carrying weapons.”

Another Syrian activist, who posted his thoughts anonymously, stressed the importance of “forming a revolutionary framework and establishing a [revolutionary] leadership committee”, stressing that “political action in this regard has been delayed and has not kept pace with events on the Syrian street.”

The Syrian activist added “the [Syrian] opposition must politically unite…the revolution needs a new plan of action which prevents the situation on the ground from stagnating, as this [stagnation] represents the major threat to the revolution.”

September 6th, 2011, 2:59 pm

 

jna said:

international observers

It would be helpful to the dissemination of accurate information for impartial international observers to investigate and report on claims of terrorism and human rights abuses by all sides in Syria.

September 6th, 2011, 3:38 pm

 
 

Aboud said:

JNA, exactly. I think international observers is an excellent idea.

September 6th, 2011, 4:04 pm

 

ann said:

No end in sight for downward spiral in Turkish-Israeli ties

By Linda Gradstein · September 6, 2011

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The bad diplomatic news for Israel just kept getting worse.

http://www.jta.org/news/article/2011/09/06/3089258/no-end-in-sight-for-downward-spiral-in-turkish-israeli-ties

First Turkey announced that it was slashing the level of its diplomatic ties with Israel to the second secretary level, giving the senior Israeli embassy staff 48 hours to leave the country. Turkey also said it was suspending all military ties with Israel.

Next the Turkish Embassy in Washington vowed that Turkey would pursue legal action against Israeli soldiers and officials who were involved in the deadly 2010 raid on the Gaza-bound Turkish ship the Mavi Marmara. Then 40 Israeli travelers on a Tel Aviv-to-Istanbul flight were separated from the other passengers upon landing and subjected to humiliating searches.

Turkey’s actions came as the United Nations released the report of its Palmer committee, which investigated Israel’s actions during its May 2010 interception of a flotilla that was trying to break its blockade of Gaza. Israeli troops encountered violent resistance when they tried to board the Mavi Marmara, and the ensuing battle left eight Turkish citizens and one dual Turkish-American citizen dead.

The Palmer report found that Israel’s blockade of Gaza was legal and that Israeli commandos needed to use force as they came under attack on the Mavi Marmara. The report also found, however, that Israel used excessive force when boarding the ship.

Turkey has demanded an apology for the deaths of its citizens, but Israel has refused.

“We need not apologize for the fact that naval commandos defended their lives against an assault by violent IHT activists,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his Cabinet this week, using the initials of the Turkish charity that sponsored the Mavi Marmara. “We need not apologize for the fact that we acted to stop the smuggling of weapons to Hamas, a terrorist organization that has already fired over 10,000 missiles, rockets and mortar rounds at our civilians. We need not apologize for the fact that we acted to defend our people, our children and our communities.”

Netanyahu then made a last-ditch attempt to head off Turkey’s decision to limit ties with Israel.

“I reiterate that the State of Israel expresses regret over the loss of life. I also hope that a way will be found to overcome the disagreement with Turkey,” he said. “Israel has never wanted a deterioration in its relations with Turkey; neither is Israel interested in such a deterioration now.”

The crisis in ties with Turkey could have far-reaching implications for Israel. Severing trade between Israel and Turkey, which is more than $3 billion annually, would have a negative impact on the Israeli economy.

Diplomatically, the crisis could badly affect Israel’s relationships with Egypt and Jordan. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited Egypt this week to discuss deepening that country’s strategic relationship with Turkey.

The trip came amid growing opposition in Egypt to the longstanding peace treaty with Israel. Egypt’s military leaders could come under increasing pressure to follow Turkey and recall their ambassador from Israel.

“Erdogan will say to the Egyptians, ‘What are you doing for the Palestinians?’” Alon Liel, a former Israeli ambassador to Turkey, told JTA. “Egyptians will say, ‘Turkey is not even Arab, and they expelled the Israeli ambassador.’ It will add to the public pressure.”

Liel believes there is even a chance of a military confrontation between Israel and Turkey if, as expected, Israel signs a deal to export liquid natural gas to Cyprus, an island nation that is tensely divided between Greek and Turkish sectors.

“Those vessels will need to go through the Mediterranean, and Turkey will do whatever it can to stop them,” Liel said, adding that Turkey has 40,000 soldiers in the Turkish part of Cyprus.

Closer to home for Israelis, the crisis with Turkey could strengthen Hamas, which controls Gaza, and which Israel and the United States see as a terrorist state. Erdogan, an Islamist, has vigorously defended Hamas from those who say it is a terrorist group that should be isolated.

Erdogan has said that he wants to visit Gaza. If Egypt agrees to let him enter Gaza from its territory, it would represent a victory for Hamas and a further challenge to Israel.

Beyond the diplomatic fallout, Israel’s relationship with Turkey played an important psychological role. Tens of thousands of Israelis visit Turkey each year with package tours that even including the one-hour flight is cheaper than staying at hotels in Eilat. The relationship with Turkey also made Israelis feel connected to the wider Muslim world. Turkey was the first Muslim country to establish diplomatic relations with Israel, in 1949.

“We used to hold up the relationship with Turkey as an example of how Israel can have a relationship with a large Muslim country,” a senior Israeli official told JTA. “We’re certainly concerned about this now.”

In the early days of the state, there were very close ties with Turkey. Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, even studied law in Turkey. Those diplomatic ties intensified in the 1980s and 1990s.

The senior Israeli official said there are two schools of thought in Israel surrounding Erdogan. One says that the deterioration in the relationship is specifically because of the flotilla incident and that if Israel apologized, the relationship would return to what it was.

The other school, which seems to be gaining ground, is that Erdogan sees himself as a potential leader of the Islamic world and is leading Turkey to become more religious and more Islam-identified. If that is true, then the flotilla incident is just an excuse to downgrade ties with Israel.

It seems unlikely that the relationship will improve anytime soon. Liel, the former ambassador, says a similar incident happened in 1980 after Israel passed the Jerusalem Law formalizing Israel’s unilateral annexation of East Jerusalem, which was captured in 1967.

Turkey then reacted exactly as it did this week — downgrading ties to the level of second secretary. Liel, then a second secretary, was sent to Ankara.

“For the five years I was there I couldn’t do anything,” he said. “Turkish officials wouldn’t even come to Israel Independence Day celebrations.”

It took 12 years for Turkey to agree to reinstate the Israeli ambassador. After the 1991 Madrid peace conference, Turkey reinstated the Israeli ambassador and accepted the Palestine Liberation Organization’s ambassador. Israeli officials say they hope that this time it won’t take 12 years to get their ambassador back to Turkey.

September 6th, 2011, 4:16 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

@ All :

I responded to overtly sectarian, hateful and Islamophobic comments from SS and the others. They started the sectarian name-calling first by bringing up religio-sectarian issues and by cursing Sunnis. I will never let that pass. I have no regrets for what I wrote but I’m sorry if I’ve offended any ma-menhebak. I am not always sectarian, but if any Menhebak on this blog again critricises Islam or Sunnis, you can expect more anti-Alawi and anti-Shia stuff from me.

Btw, I have nothing against Christians and Druze, especially Druzes. I’m frustrated at the Christians for the oast 6 years becoz they are sucking up to hezbollah and Iran and are digging their own graves. Sunni Caliphs ruled Syria for 1,000 years and not a single Christian was unjustly killed, not a single Christian Church was disrespected. Why should they all of a sudden put their trust in an upstart from Qurdaha ? More to the point, why do they have some sort of emotional attachment to French language and culture ? It seems rather funy when Arab Christians have names like “Francois” or “Michel” lolz. The Dryze are good ppl bcoz they mind their own business and know the value of money.

I don’t have anything against Christians, Druzes or Alawis who are against the regime, who know the real nature of Sunnis, if Sunnis were really so “Radical”, would a single Christian Church be stabding in any Arab country ? Would there be 7 million Christains in Egypt, 2 million Christians in Lebanon, 3 mill. Christians in Syria ? Remember, there was a time when Sunnis could have WIPED THEM off with IMPUNITY if they had wanted to. The fact that so many Minorities exist today are proof that Sunnis are one of the most tolerant people on earth. So, my dear Christian and Dtuze brothers, please DITCH this regime and this fake Irooni-Majoosi – Zorostrian conspiracy and reclaim our lost glory !!! We should all be proud of our history, like Umar ibn Khattab, Uthman ibn Affan, ‘Ali ibn Ali Talib, Khalid ibn Walid, Salaheddin al Ayoubi. Don;t fall for this pseudo-secularist pseudo-humanist Shiaa Majoosiya Iraaniya propaganda.

Btw, someone pls ban SPANN.

September 6th, 2011, 4:18 pm

 

atassi said:

Warning
This is a regime sponsored sectarian flavored Website promoting the MenHiback and Assad criminal acts, NOTHING is truthful in this article, and the terrorist regime is doing all the killing and still failed to quell the revolt ..
Down with Assad,
Down with the tyrant,
Down with the Baath..

Long-lived Syria…
Long-lived HOMS…
the criminals Website
http://www.syriasteps.com/?d=110&id=74317&in_main_page=1

September 6th, 2011, 4:23 pm

 

ann said:

Gulf states’ policy of spending to silence unrest raises questions of sustainability

Tuesday, September 6, 11:59 AM

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/gulf-states-policy-of-spending-to-silence-unrest-raises-questions-of-sustainability/2011/09/06/gIQAwqFs6J_story.html

CAIRO — The Arab Spring hasn’t come cheap.

Uprisings this year across the Arab world — stoked by chasms of income disparity, high unemployment and inflation — are now being addressed with pledges of money.

From Egypt to the Gulf states, more than $160 billion has been pledged to fund job creation, social programs and private sector growth — funding that nervous governments hope will be enough to appease their increasingly impatient populations. More than 75 percent of that total is for Saudi Arabia alone, where the oil-rich kingdom wants to buy domestic stability with jobs and handouts.

But analysts are increasingly skeptical that throwing money at the problem will suffice in the face of demands for genuine reform.

Money “exacerbates the problem, because you’re creating an even wealthier society with higher expectations,” said Gala Riani, Mideast analyst with IHS Global Insight, referring to Saudi Arabia’s spending pledge. While it can work in the short term “the culture that it’s created is very difficult to sustain in the longer term.”

Arab finance ministers are scheduled to hold a special session Wednesday in Abu Dhabi to discuss the economic fallout of the uprisings. For some, the focus is the price of reform and reconstruction, for others, the costs have yet to be fully calculated.

But with protests continuing even where the uprisings have ended, the stakes are clear for the new governments, and for those hoping to hold onto power.

The former leaders of Tunisia and Egypt are, respectively, in exile and prison. Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi is on the run. Syria’s Bashar al-Assad is quashing unrest with bullets and Yemen’s Ali Abdullah Saleh is recovering from injuries sustained in a rocket attack. Bahrain’s king is fending off continued protests from the Shiite majority in his tiny island nation. In all those nations, the economies are barely limping along.

The domino effect of the Arab Spring, where protests in one country quickly spread to its neighbors, has not gone unnoticed in the oil-rich Gulf Arab nations, where power has long been concentrated in the hands of absolute rulers.

Saudi Arabia was among the quickest to act, with King Abdullah pledging around $120 billion for the kingdom’s lower income groups. That followed fears that the Shiite uprising in neighboring Bahrain would spill into predominantly Sunni Saudi Arabia, disrupting its all-important oil production.

The Saudi Arabian government also launched a so-called “Saudization” program, requiring companies to boost their ranks of Saudi nationals. For years, most companies have relied overwhelmingly on expatriate workers.

Saudi Arabia and the five other Gulf Cooperation Council members also pledged $20 billion in aid to two of the GCC’s most embattled states — Bahrain and Oman — to help those governments cope with mounting social unrest.

Even where the uprising has shifted from protests to rebuilding, as in Egypt, most longtime economic tensions like unemployment, low wages and a housing crunch remain. How the government deals with these issues could shape the direction of other uprisings and reform efforts.

In the wake of the mass protests that toppled former President Hosni Mubarak, economic growth fell 4.2 percent in the first quarter of 2011, compared to the year before, and the IMF is projecting just 1 percent growth this year. Egyptian officials expect the GDP to grow by about 3 percent in the coming year, about half what was expected before the January uprising.

Unemployment, meanwhile, is officially at almost 12 percent and not expected to fall significantly before 2013, according to London-based Capital Economics. Central Bank figures also show that Egypt has run down about one-third of its foreign reserves since December, in part to support the currency.

The government has pledged to increase spending for key social programs while keeping the deficit at about 8.6 percent of GDP. To fund the shortfall, it has been selling bonds and treasury bills. But yields on the notes have been climbing, reflecting investors’ continuing unease with the country’s ongoing challenges.

Gulf Arab states have more of a cushion in reserves accumulated from oil’s rally over the past few years. But that same reliance on oil revenues also leaves them vulnerable and has the potential to affect their ambitious spending plans.

Saudi Arabia, for instance, needs oil prices of at least $80-$85 per barrel to keep its overall budget on track, according to various estimates. Capital Economic said in a recent research note that prices would need to fall below $70 before the government’s spending plans would have to change.

Brent crude futures are currently at about $110 per barrel, after climbing to over $120 at the height of the Libyan civil war.

Meanwhile, the Saudis say their Saudization program will create about 1.5 million new jobs, potentially adding new burdens to private sector companies by forcing them to pay for training — or to simply employ Saudis but add another layer of expatriates to do the actual work.

The program, “in of itself, doesn’t resolve that problem that a lot of Saudis don’t want to work” and aren’t qualified for the jobs, said Riani.

And the massive funding packages do little to tackle the broader problems about lack of accountability in the oil-rich Arab world.

“There is no way to accept the way the Saudi state is,” said Abdel-Moneim Saeed, head of the Cairo-based Al-Ahram Center for Political and Strategic Studies, noting that growth over the past decade has created an educated business class that will not tolerate the status quo for long.

“They need a lot of serious political reforms,” Saeed said. The monarchy “could make the transition peaceful, keep a lot of the wealth, but they’ve got to start having some serious local elections, for instance.”

September 6th, 2011, 4:23 pm

 

some guy in damascus said:

hey guys, i pin-pointed demonstrations in a satellite image of damascus,
the big red dots: hotbeds for demonstrations, always protest.
small green dots: occasional demonstrations, rarely protest.
small yellow dots: very limited demonstrations. very rare.
black star: besho’s alleged residence
note: i may be a bit inaccurate in marking barzeh and qaboon. sorry
if anyone disputes this, please tell my why and i will edit.
thanks!

link: http://s1093.photobucket.com/albums/i421/someguyindamascus/?action=view&current=dmc-1.png

September 6th, 2011, 4:27 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

SPANN, pls stop. You are a real pain in the ann. Looks like your parents did not even bring you up properly.

September 6th, 2011, 4:29 pm

 

daisie said:

Dear Ann

#101 Sanctioning Messenger Dr. Bouthainia Shaaban Assaults American Values

I was shocked to read that the US government has sanctioned Mrs Shaaban that I have known personnaly in the UK. She is an very honest, human and intelligent person.
I guess there is a strong Syrian American lobby that influenced US government to make this unjust sanction.

It would be only fair that the Syrian government retaliates by imposing economical sanctions on these Syrian-American lobbyists and their family by freezing their assets and holding their properties in Syria.
Don’t you agree?

September 6th, 2011, 4:29 pm

 

Khalid Tlass said:

Heheh, nice work SGID. Thanks for pinpointing Besho’s house, I wish I was in the cockpit of a Mig-23 with 1000-lbs of laser guided missiles.

September 6th, 2011, 4:32 pm

 

Some guy in damascus said:

Thanks, Khalid.
@ daisie.
But you werent surprised when she defecated loads of lies out of her mouth back in march and April??? I doubt she has any ” legislative” role in this crackdown but her lying was horrific. She does seem like a highly qualified person that has to cover up to this bloody regime. What a waste of human resources.

September 6th, 2011, 4:50 pm

 

Tara said:

Beaware

Thank you for posting the link for Adnan Bakkour’s second video stating that the government report that he was coerced was a lie. His statements are enough evidence to charge Bashar with crimes against humanity. As you see, none of the mnhebaks have acknowledged his second statement. I wish him safe departure from Syria. It is so imperative that he takes refuge in a foreign country and that he contacts the HRW to document the regime vicious killings of civilians.

And by the way, I really liked the simple image posted on Arabica site. I wonder why? Very good taste!

September 6th, 2011, 4:58 pm

 

daisie said:

Some guy

If this the way people express themselves in Damascus when they disagree? I thought Syrians, especially in Damascus were civilized and polite.

September 6th, 2011, 5:00 pm

 

Some guy in damascus said:

I apologize if I offended you daisie, but bouthaina lied to us. That’s the bottom line.
We have no ways to safely express our selves. Demonstrations will get you killed. Drawings will get you beaten up. Singing will result with your voice box removed.
if she loved her people instead of the Assad cult she would’ve resigned.
I emphasize: bouthaina lied to us.

September 6th, 2011, 5:10 pm

 

abughassan said:

http://www.aksalser.com/?page=view_news&id=0200c5d4868fa6ac5712e8314f422940&ar=439209271
is Michel Kilo a “menhebak” also ?
Why it is so hard for some people to understand that destroying the Syrian army is self-defeating?

September 6th, 2011, 5:11 pm

 

Aboud said:

Daisie said

“It would be only fair that the Syrian government retaliates by imposing economical sanctions on these Syrian-American lobbyists and their family”

Wow, they would get away light if that’s all that Besho’s thugs did to them. Usually this is what happens to dissidents, or people just suspected of being dissidents;

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-09-06/agius-death-of-a-syrian-doctor/2873514/?site=sydney

Buthaina has been sanctioned because she spent her career justifying such atrocities. She is as culpable as Goebbels was during the Third Reich’s reign of terror.

@192 How is it self defeating to destroy an occupation army whose sole purpose is to murder and kill its own citizens? Or do you imagine these turds will overnight transform themselves into peace loving patriotic Syrians with a love for human rights? Without the army, junior and the Baathists would have fallen long ago.

If you want a model to emulate, look at the Egyptian army. The Syrian army is a disgrace.

September 6th, 2011, 5:15 pm

 

beaware said:

Syria: Troops Raid Homes In Manhunt For Defected Attorney General Adnan Bakkour

ZEINA KARAM 09/ 5/11 AFP

Soldiers demanding information about Adnan Bakkour fanned out near the Turkish border and in central Syria, said Omar Idilbi, a spokesman for the activist network The Local Coordination Committees. Security forces killed at least one person near the Turkish border, he said.

Bakkour’s whereabouts remained unclear. The former attorney general for central Hama province appeared in two videos last week declaring his resignation, but authorities said “terrorists” had kidnapped him and forced him to make the recording.

Bakkour denied the government claim in one of the videos.

His defection appeared to be the highest-level so far in the five-month Syrian uprising.

In an audio message posted online over the past day, a man who identified himself as Bakkour said that security forces and pro-regime thugs had attacked his convoy Friday in the Maaret Hirmeh area in Idlib province, killing four people accompanying him and wounding three others.

“I myself was lightly wounded because of shrapnel,” he said in the audio recording, adding he was able to escape with the help of other dissidents.

Idilbi, the LCC spokesman, confirmed the Friday attack in Maaret Hirmeh, saying a high-ranking leader of the protest movement from the rebellious city of Hama died in the attack on Bakkour.

He said Bakkour was now “safely out of the country,” but troops were still conducting raids and arrests in the Hama countryside and Idlib province in search for him.

He declined to say where Bakkour was, or how he knew he was now out of Syria. Other unconfirmed reports by activists said he had made it to Turkey or Cyprus.

more…

September 6th, 2011, 5:15 pm

 

hsyrian said:

The “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook group –
which has ALLEGEDLY more than 276,000 members and which has become a major online center for news of the Syrian revolution–

The OWNER of the “Syrian Revolution 2011″ Facebook account leads Sweden’s chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood .
His name is فداء الدين طريف السيد عيسى
Fida’ ad-Din Tariif as-Sayyid `Isa,

http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=9340

The OWNER of the site has removed all the visible sectarian and violent comments and continue to filter them
but he is inciting people to carry on protests with slogans such as “No Dialogue” “We want to topple the regime” , which are typical MB agenda.
but he propagates MB lies and exaggeration .

Why NO mention of its link to the Muslim Brotherhood does appear on the “Syrian Revolution 2011” Facebook page ?

September 6th, 2011, 5:24 pm

 

SYR.EXPAT said:

“اغرب إعلامي في العالم
– لم اسمع ولم أر في حياتي شخصا أوسع ذمة ولا ابيض ضميرا من إعلامي سوري (نسيت اسمه بسبب نعمة النسيان) كان في اتصال مع العربية وينفي أن تكون هناك مظاهرة في القابون التي هو في مركزها الان، ثم قلبت القناة إلى فضائية أخرى لأسمعه يقول سيدتي أنا الآن في اللاذقية و الحياة هادئة والصور التي لديكم مفبركة، لكن ‘فلاش مان’ أو ‘مار كذاب’ أو ‘الخوجا كذاب’ أو الرجل الاثيري، او العفريت الازرق علق في مشادة مع الإعلامية الباسلة نجوى قاسم وزعم لها انه يعرف الضابط المنشق الذي ظهر للتو في الصورة معرفة جيدة وقد انشق على قائده بسبب تذمره من سيارة البيجو! وقد سخر الإعلامي إياه من ابتسامة شهيد سوري، واتهمه بأنه ضعيف في التمثيل لأنه لم يستطع إخفاء ضحكته، ناسيا أنّ الشهداء ‘يصعدون إلى حتفهم باسمين’ .

http://www.alquds.co.uk/index.asp?fname=today6qpt997.htm&arc=data\201199-066qpt997.htm

September 6th, 2011, 5:32 pm

 

Tara said:

Beaware @ 194

“more…” is so cool. I love it. But there is no link. Sorry.

Also, as you are very well read, can you link any news about Majidi work in # 173 if it comes across. Have you heard of him?

September 6th, 2011, 5:35 pm

 

SYR.EXPAT said:

مهمة ‘ملغومة’ للعربي في دمشق
عبد الباري عطوان
2011-09-06

يصل السيد نبيل العربي الامين العام لجامعة الدول العربية الى دمشق اليوم، حاملاً مبادرة عربية مكونة من 12 نقطة، تقترح على الرئيس السوري بشار الاسد ‘اعلان مبادئ’، يؤكد التزام حكومته بالانتقال بالبلاد الى نظام حكم تعددي، والتعجيل بالاصلاحات السياسية، والوقف الفوري لكل اعمال العنف ضد المدنيين، وفصل الجيش عن الحياة المدنية، واطلاق سراح جميع السجناء، وتعويض المتضررين.
السلطات السورية ترددت كثيراً في استقبال السيد العربي، وابلغته رسمياً من قبل وزير خارجيتها السيد وليد المعلم بأنها ترحب به كأمين عام للجامعة، ولكن ليس كحامل لمبادرة وزراء الخارجية العرب، التي تناقش الاوضاع الداخلية السورية، لان هذا يعتبر تدخلاً في شؤون سيادية.
لا نعرف لماذا غيرت هذه السلطات رأيها، وما الذي جعلها تتراجع عن موقفها المتعنت هذا، وتفرش السجاد الاحمر مجدداً للأمين العام للجامعة، ولكن ما نعرفه ان الكثيرين من اصدقائها (وهم قلة على اي حال) خطأوا هذا الموقف، وطالبوها بالمرونة، والعمل على كسر العزلة، وفتح الابواب والنوافذ المغلقة، لأي افكار او زوار، لايجاد مخرج او حتى منفذ صغير من الأزمة الراهنة.
فبعد ستة اشهر من هدر الدماء، وقتل واصابة الآلاف، وفتح سجون جديدة لاستيعاب عشرات الآلاف الآخرين من المعتقلين، تحتاج القيادة السورية الى اجراء مراجعة شاملة ومعمقة لطريقة إدارتها للأزمة، بما يؤدي الى التسليم بفشل الحلول الأمنية، وضرورة البحث عن حلول ووسائل اخرى، لان الاستمرار في العناد سيؤدي حتماً الى كارثة للجميع في سورية، حكومة ومعارضة.
صحيح ان الحلول الامنــــية حمت النظـــام حتى الآن من خطـــر الانهـــيار، على غرار ما حدث في مصر وتونــــس (لا نضع ليبــــيا في الخانة نفسها بسبب عنصر التدخل الخارجــــي)، ولكن هذا لا يعــــني ان هذا النظــام تعدى مرحلة الخطر، وان باستطاعته الركون الى هذه الحلول الدموية الى الابد.
‘ ‘ ‘
من المؤكد، وبحكم متابعة ادبيات النظام في سورية، واقوال المتحدثين باسمه، ان فرص فشل مهمة السيد العربي في دمشق اكبر بكثير من فرص نجاحها. لانه يعتقد ان المبادرة التي يحملها الامين العام هي جزء من المؤامرة الخارجية التي يتعرض لها، وان بنودها وضعت من قبل جيفري فيلتمان مساعد وزيرة الخارجية الامريكية، بمباركة وتأييد معظم الدول العربية التي تسير في الفلك الامريكي.
ان يتحدث المسؤولون عن مؤامرة خارجية فهذا من حقهم، بل ونزيد عليهم بالقول ان المؤامرات الامريكية ـ الاسرائيلية لا تستهدف سورية فقط، وانما المنطقة العربية بأسرها، ولكن ما نختلف معهم عليه، وبقوة، هو طريقتهم في مواجهة هذه المؤامرة، اي باعتماد القتل وارتكاب المجازر في حق المطالبين بالاصلاحات والتغيير الديمقراطي، وهي مطالب ‘مشروعة’ حسب قول الايرانيين، اقرب حلفائهم.
عندما تتعرض الدول، او الانظمة الحاكمة فيها بالذات، الى مؤامرة خارجية، فإن اول وابرز خطوة تلجأ اليها لإحباطها، هي تعزيز الجبهة الداخلية، وتعبئة الشعب للالتفاف حول النظام، وتحشيده للدفاع عن بلده، وهذا للأسف لم يحدث في سورية، بل حدث عكسه تماماً، والتفاصيل معروفة، ونرى وقائعها كل يوم عبر ارقام الضحايا الذين يسقطون برصاص الأمن والشبيحة.
‘ ‘ ‘
لو كنت مكان الرئيس بشار الاسد، واحمد الله انني لن اكون في مكانه او غيره، لاستقبلت الامين العام لجامعة الدول العربية، ورحبت به بحرارة، واشدت كثيراً بمبادرته وكل ما ورد فيها من بنود، واعربت عن استعدادي المطلق لتنفيذها بنداً بنداً، متمنياً عليه في الوقت نفسه، ان يطالب وزراء الخارجية العرب، والخليجيين منهم بالذات، الذين تحمسوا لها ولبنودها، ان يبدأوا بتطبيق هذه البنود فوراً، خاصة ان بلادهم مستقرة، ولا تواجه ثورة شعبية، ولا مؤامرات خارجية، فشعوبهم اولى من غيرهم بالتنعم بالاصلاحات والمساواة والعدالة والتوزيع العادل للثروة.
بمعنى آخر نتمنى ان نرى تعددية حزبية في الدول العربية، وبرلمانات منتخبة، واصلاحات سياسية جذرية، وانتخابات رئاسية نزيهة وشفافة، بحضور مراقبين دوليين، وقضاء مستقل عادل، وصحافة حرة، وعدالة اجتماعية، ومساواة في التنمية وفي الحقوق والواجبات.
لا نجادل في ضخامة عيوب النظام السوري، خاصة على صعيد الحريات وحقوق الانسان، ولا نختلف مطلقاً حول التسليم بأن الدول الاخرى، والخليجية منها بالذات، بزعامة المملكة العربية السعودية، اكثر استقراراً وأقل دموية، ولكن هذا لا يعني ان شعوبها تنعم بالحكم الرشيد ولا تريد اصلاحات ديمقراطية جذرية.
وربما يفيد التذكير بأن حدوث التغيير الديمقراطي في سورية، وهو قادم لا محالة في نهاية المطاف، بالنظام او بدونه، سيعجل بحدوث التغييرات نفسها في المملكة العربية السعودية ودول الخليج، لأن الملكيات ليست محصنة امام هذا التسونامي المشروع، فمن المؤكد ان الشعوب العربية باتت موحدة تحت عنوان واحد وهو انهاء عصر الديكتاتوريات والحكم الاوتوقراطي، والانطلاق بقوة نحو الاصلاح السياسي، ولن تفيد الرشاوى المالية في وقف هذا التسونامي الديمقراطي الكاسح.
ان اكثر ما نخشى ونحذر منه ان تكون مهمة السيد العربي مماثلة، بل ربما متطابقة، او مكملة لمهمة مماثلة لسلفه السيد عمرو موسى التي مهدت، ومن ثم شرّعت لتدخل حلف الناتو العسكري في ليبيا، وهي المهمة التي ندم عليها السيد موسى ندماً شديداً، بعد ان شاهد النتائج على الارض قبل ان يطلب منه ان يقفل فمه الى الأبد.
وأخيراً لا نستغرب مخاوف المعارضة السورية من مهمة العربي هذه، التي قد تفسر على انها محاولة من النظام الرسمي العــربي لانقاذ النظام السوري، وهي على اي حال مخاوف مبررة مع استبعادنا لها في الوقت نفسه، لان هذا النظام العربي بات فاقداً للقرار المستقل، ويأتمرُ بأوامر واشنطن.
فرؤوس النظام الرسمي العربي، والملكيون منهم خاصة، لا يريدون اصلاحاً في سورية أو اي مكان آخر، بل يريدون استمرار المواجهات وأعمال العنف لأطول فترة ممكنة، تماماً مثلما عارضوا التغيير في مصر، حتى يقولوا لشعوبهم انظروا ما حدث في سورية ومصر وتونس من اضطرابات، وعدم استقرار ومستقبل مجهول، نتيجة مطالبة شعوبها بالاصلاح والتغيير الديمقراطي، ولهذا فالأفضل لكم كشعوب ان تبتعدوا عن هذا التوجه، وتتمسكوا بنا وبأنظمتنا.

http://www.alquds.co.uk/index.asp?fname=today6z999.htm&arc=data\201199-066z999.htm

September 6th, 2011, 5:35 pm

 

daisie said:

Some guy in Damascus

I understand your anger and frustration. I am sure that not being able to express freely is a terrible ordeal. My opinion on Mrs Shaaban is only based on personal contacts I had with her years ago. I don’t know enough about the situation and the exact role she played in the repression as an accomplice or a moderator, so I can’t really emit a judgment. Did the US administration published hard evidence against her to apply such drastic sanctions? I have many doubts about the thoroughness and reliability of US investigations in general. In any case it is your country, you know what is best for your country.

September 6th, 2011, 5:36 pm

 

hsyrian said:

Dear Deasie

You are right:
Ms Buthaina did not deserve such unfair sanctions ,
but to comfort you : some nasty commentators here are not Syrians.

Clearly , the purpose of such sanctions is a desperate attempt to prevent these persons to travel to hold negotiations with the Opposition outside Syria and to do their diplomatic duties.

September 6th, 2011, 5:42 pm

 

Some guy in damascus said:

“Clearly , the purpose of such sanctions is a desperate attempt to prevent these persons to travel to hold negotiations with the Opposition outside Syria and to do their diplomatic duties.”

I want you to ask yourself: why is their an opposition outside Syria?
Why can’t they organize inside Syria?
Hint: aref Dalilah,Ali ferzat ,najati tayara, ibrahim. Kashoush, riad seif ,heytham manaa…………

September 6th, 2011, 5:52 pm

 

Tara said:

Daisie

Buthina shaaban is as despicable as the regime she represents. Ask Syrian-American doctors who met with her in the US several years ago and voiced out their concerns about lack of liberties in Syria when she asked them why they never returned. She was unable to tolerate any dissenting voice and told them arrogantly to stay where they are and never return and that Syria does not need people like them. All of this was in a public forum. She is not smart nor human as far as I am concerned. She may be a good actor.

September 6th, 2011, 5:57 pm

 

N.Z. said:

Some gal talking about Shaabana, “She is an very honest, human and intelligent person.” That is why, when she was questioned about the horrific ordeal Maher Arrar faced in junior’s jail, she was dumbfounded, she denied that this could have ever took place under her criminal masters, her audacity speaks volume, shame is not in their dictionary, savagery is.

Give yourself a break, Daisy, and stop defending the indefensible!

Same goes to those defending high ranking officers in the Syrian army, an officer posing beside a dead Syrian, holding his two fingers in a “V” sign for a photo op! This is how mortifying our disgraceful army has succumb to under the Baathists nepotists scums.

September 6th, 2011, 5:59 pm

 

Aboud said:

“The OWNER of the site has removed all the visible sectarian and violent comments and continue to filter them”

*facepalm* It’s called moderating one’s own website. Professor Landis does the same thing here, (rightly) removing insults and personnel attacks. Removing sectarian and violent comments is a moderator’s right. But the fact that such comments were made in the first place does not make it representative of the opinions of the owner of the website. I dared you to find one moderator comment calling for violence, and you failed. Epically.

It’s ironic, even though the owners of that page call for non-violent and non-sectarian action, the menhebaks still hate them, just because they are against their God Besho.

And they aren’t required to post every single detail about their lives. Or why don’t the fake Qatari revolution page owners post the details of theirs? ROFL! 🙂

September 6th, 2011, 6:02 pm

 

873 said:

I’m not a fan of Assange- he is far too valuable to the Israelis and the intelligence agencies to be believable, and as an entity ‘for change’, Look what policiy our MSM messemgers are pushing- using CIA-backed Assange as vehicle:
“Politico wants Assange committed to an insane asylum”
http://www.infowars.com/politico-wants-assange-committed-to-insane-asylum/

163. 873 said:
153. ann said:
Study: 38% of Europeans have mental disorders! lol!
09.06.2011, 10:22 AM EDT

The above study coordinates with articles released today across US media that “half of all Americans will have mental illness in their lifetimes”. Either the pharmaceutical corps are angling for expanded markets, or the neo-Bolsheviks are trying to establish precedent for legislation deeming political dissenters be labelled mental cases, hence prospects for incarceration, on the Gulag model. As the APA is pivotal in the torture procedures at detainee centers in Gitmo and M.E. black sites, I’d also consider the latter possibility. The biggest FEMA detainee camp in USA is for ‘rehabilitating mental disorders’. Holds 2 million, located in Alaska.

September 6th, 2011, 6:03 pm

 

SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

LOL @ misery

SPAMBOT ANN @ 153

Study: 38% of Europeans have mental disorders! lol!

Only a heartless soulless person would laugh out loud at such an epidemic.

You have officially joined the Men7ebbak crowd now. They combine homophobia, islamophobia, ungratefulness, xenophobia, and quite few oither sympotms of hating someon and now you and those who liked your post confirmed tastelessness and heartlessness. What is next, laughing at children with leukemia because they are bold? or at the dying in Somalia because they are too thin? It would not surprise me. Not a bit.

September 6th, 2011, 6:20 pm

 

beaware said:

#194
Syria: Troops Raid Homes In Manhunt For Defected Attorney General Adnan Bakkour
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/09/05/syria-raid-defected-adnan-bakkour_n_949104.html

September 6th, 2011, 6:24 pm

 

N.Z. said:

# 200, hsyrian,

Attacking the messenger, not the message means you’ve lost the debate. A friendly reminder.

“some nasty commentators here are not Syrians.”

September 6th, 2011, 6:24 pm

 

daisie said:

Tara, N.Z, Some guy in Damascus

You are syrians and you know much more than I about the real nature of Mrs Shaaban. Fist impressions can be misleading.
I am not defending her. I am always suspicious of the US applying sanctions without indisputable proofs of complicity in crimes. Now if you are sure these proofs exist for Mrs Shaaban, then you are right, the sanctions are justified.

September 6th, 2011, 6:35 pm

 

N.Z. said:

Daisy, we are for freedom and social justice for all, you are equally so. Thanks.

September 6th, 2011, 6:50 pm

 
 

Haytham Khoury said:

Dear SGID @201:

By the admission of all the figures of the opposition outside the country, the main opposition is inside the country. The latter comprises the ones who went to prison for their ideas. However, the problem with the opposition inside the country is that regime preventing them their free movement and free organization. I am sure they are trying to organize secretly.
For this reason, we need now the opposition outside the country to do its role. This role should be transient.
I wish once the regime falls, that the opposition will hold a meeting in Damascus and elect a leadership for the transition.

September 6th, 2011, 7:15 pm

 

Abughassan said:

I prefer mercy myself but I can not disagree with those who are asking for justice against thugs and officials who were proven to have killed or ordered the killing of innocent syrians. The problem is the standards used to determine guilt and whether syrians will be guilty by association. I wish things were as easy as some of you think..

September 6th, 2011, 7:23 pm

 
 

Dale Andersen said:

Memo To: KHALID

RE: “…Sunni Caliphs ruled Syria for 1,000 years and not a single Christian was unjustly killed, not a single Christian Church was disrespected…”

Oh, sweet baby Jesus, Khallie, that is such a wet, steamy, foul pile of horse manure I’m not going to venture within 100 yards of it.

Question: if the Caliphs were such cool dudes, why did the Syrian Christians support Hulagu when Aleppo fell to the Mongols?

September 6th, 2011, 7:30 pm

 

Tara said:

Dear Daisie

Thank you for your gracious response.  It says much about your personality.  Unfortunately, daisie, Syrians are caught in cross-hairs.  The revolution was initially triggered by the regime pulling the nails of school age children in Daraa after they sprayed graffiti on a single wall in that town.  The vast majority of the revolution supporters consist of average people who could not tolerate living in humiliation any more.  Most of the slogans you hear are cries against humiliation.  The regime could not defend it’s atrocities except through inventing a propaganda of armed gangs or Islamists.  We are neither.  We are just boring every day people enraged by the killing and subjugation and not necessarily religious.  Most Syrians carry pretty moderate mentality.  Do not be deceived by the high percentage of women who wear hijab.  It is just their cultuure.  I know many of those women and they are actually more daring and liberal than Tara’s herself.  Unfortunately, some non-Syrians have also been deceived by this regime’s history of resistance and of it being anti-western.  Most of us were fed this mentality and most of us defended the regime for long time until we were awakened by the unprecedented brutality against it’s own people.  

I do not blame you in regard to your suspicions.  When the revolution was first featured on CNN, a highly regarded professor of Colombian origin stopped me unsolicitedly to express solidarity with Bashar al Assad thinking it is a conspiracy against the last front of resistance. Some people around the world did side with the regime thinking they are siding with the underdog, not aware that the so called resistance is just a cover up to keep 23 millions slaves subjugated in a big farm that Assad family think they own.   

September 6th, 2011, 7:31 pm

 

Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Majedkhaldoon @139

Sorry, I did not see you comments till now.
I agree with your assessment.

I defended from the beginning burning the Ba’ath party locales

I defended self-defense strategy from the beginning, like they are doing now in some quarters in Homs.

Also, I defended self-defense by the demonstrators using Molotov cocktail and other means.

I remember when I advised some people to encourage the people in Der al-Zor to demonstrate, I based my advice on the premise that the tribes would practice hit-and-run strategy against Maher al-Assad units. I wanted these units to be exhausted.

Would you mind read what I wrote to them regarding Maher units.
http://haytham-khoury2.blogspot.com/2011/07/strategies-to-fight-regime.html

I can clarify more what I meant by exhausting his units.

All what I want that there is a force that remains after the fall of the regime to protect civilians.

September 6th, 2011, 7:53 pm

 

Abughassan said:

I agree that mrs Shabaan is a mouthpiece for the regime. Her job is to sugarcoat the bitter reality of the regime. What she says is largely irrelevant and the sanctions against her are symbolic and in my opinion somewhat silly. It is the security chiefs who remain as the largest obstacle in Syria today.
Until syrians feel safe and respected in their own country,nothing she,or her boss,says will be taken seriously.

September 6th, 2011, 7:55 pm

 

Akbar Palace said:

@206 SYRIAN HAMSTER:

Right on. Laughing at an illness is pretty “sick” if you ask me.

And, BTW, it just means a many more Europeans are treated.

September 6th, 2011, 8:12 pm

 

Darryl said:

135. TARA said:

To Islamophobes on SC

Dear Tara, I am sorry for the late reply, I would have thought an independent person like you would have been the first Islamophobic person on SC. I have arrived at this conclusion as follows:

1. You have not read the Qur’an, I may be wrong, but you seem to think its like an award winning love novel.

2. You have not read the Ahadith and you have no clue what has been said and some of the ridiculous narrations concerning women and minorities, consequently your view of the Messenger is that of “Prince Charming”.

3. You are enjoying freedom, dignity, religious tolerance and pursuit of your dreams thanks to western ideals that fought for many centuries and paid with “blood and guts” to separate religion from state affairs so that every one is equal, a feat that we are yet to see Islam pursue after 1400 years. On the contrary Muslims want to preserve this archaic way of life.

4. No Muslim in this forum would wish to live under a Saudi based system even though it is more liberal than the standard Sharia based system that some advocate, but is it easy to it talk up from a comfortable chair some where in the west far removed from religious harassment.

5. Lastly, People from Christian and Jewish background do not know for sure where they will stand, as Muslims happen to be more powerful than the Allah in the Qur’an who dare NOT claim that the Judeo-Christian scriptures are corrupt but Muslims and their Sheikhs make such a charge and leaves them exposed in a future system being advocated by others that I shall not name.

So Tara, I would have thought you are an Islamophobe also!

September 6th, 2011, 8:17 pm

 

ss said:

181. Khalid Tlass said:

“I have no regrets for what I wrote”

He does not regret what he wrote but he is sorry. (I am confused????)
I would like to explain to new readers what Tlass is refering to: please go back to his comment number 32 on this thread to read his attacks against Alawi and Christians. He wants to appologize for that after he got some advice from MBeees (Muslim brotherhoods) like himself.

Btw, I have nothing against Christians and Druze, especially Druzes.

I don’t have anything against Christians, Druzes or Alawis who are against the regime: This is what Tlass said yesterday (comment 32)# “Sunnis deserve to rule the Middle East; Shia are fake and creations of Abdullah ibn Saba”

He has nothing against Christians howevere. this is what he wrote (comment 32) # “Alawis are not Muslims, Christians can sit in the lap of MICHEL AOUN for all I care”

who know the real nature of Sunnis, if Sunnis were really so “Radical”, would a single Christian Church be stabding in any Arab country. He is playing little lamb: marry has a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb; mary has a little lamb. I am sorry for the pain I caused you. I do not regret what I said but I said it and now I want to appologize. Forgive me all.

Remember, there was a time when Sunnis could have WIPED THEM off with IMPUNITY if they had wanted to. Ooooo; the MB again is showing is whiping out face and identity. He tries hard to be little lamb but it okay now and then if he shows us his woooolfffffff teeth. Sunnis could have whiped Christians if they wanted?????mmmm

New readers FYI only this is what Tlass; the little lamb said yesterday “We will convert the fake shrines of al-Hussein and Ali in Iraq to public toilets”

Enough said. Would you please accept his apology on my behalf?

September 6th, 2011, 8:21 pm

 

No_Irony said:

Ba’athists are not all-bad. In fact they also make (made) excellent melodies, like this one (no irony):

http://youtu.be/b3ncLJp0JRg

ENJOY!

Just to not dissapoint certain fans: you will not find any Assads in this video, but many other (dead) handsome arab men to worship…

September 6th, 2011, 8:29 pm

 

majedkhaldoon said:

It seems that Adnan Bakkoor is extremely dangerous to the regime, he can produce a lot of evidences against the regime and incriminate Bashar and his thugs in the international court,If he is in Cyprus he should move to another state,Cyprus is not safe for him.

The army is full of thugs who killed and betrayed the syrian people, those thugs who defend those criminal,will be followed,to defend relatives who committed crimes ,just because they are relative,is not an excuse .

The Secretary general of the Arab League,mission is dead on arrival, the regime refused his trip,it is clear that they are not interested in reform.

September 6th, 2011, 8:36 pm

 

Aboud said:

Honestly, even though I read it several times, I’m afraid I didn’t understand much of #221. Could someone perhaps interpret it for me? Something about Islamic sheep?

“The Secretary general of the Arab League,mission is dead on arrival, the regime refused his trip,it is clear that they are not interested in reform.”

Agreed, but the proposals the secretary is carrying are highly reasonable and original. I’m surprised the Arab League managed to come up with such a realistic plan. The opposition should put its full weight behind it, it already has the backing of the Arab countries that matter.

Of course Besho is going to dismiss them out of hand. More rope for him to hang himself.

September 6th, 2011, 8:36 pm

 

abughassan said:

Ashraf Al-Miqdad is a liability for the opposition,he wants another Libya in Syria after seeing the success of the NATO bombing campaign in that country. He is sure to find supporters for his plan on this forum but I am not one of them. Over time,Syrians will be able to filter out people like Miqdad and find better ways to change their government. Mr Miqdad’s view puts him in the same category as Jalabi of Iraq.
(I struggled to find a diplomatic way to describe Miqdad’s plan not because he is worthy of respect but because I respect this forum)..

September 6th, 2011, 9:05 pm

 

beaware said:

The Arab League initiative to Syria: neutralise the army & presidential elections in 2014. Full text in Arabic

http://international.daralhayat.com/internationalarticle/304457

September 6th, 2011, 9:19 pm

 

Tara said:

Majedkhadoon

I agree with you in regard to Adnan Bakkour.  I am very concerned about his safety.  I wish he asks for an asylum in North America.  He is without a doubt the most dangerous man for the regime.

Darryl

Sorry but you did not provide a real argument defending islamophobes.  You provided few false assumptions here and there.  You first assumption was that I did not read the Quraan.  I did. Your second one, that I am not familiar or did not read the Hadeeth.  I did.  Your third implied assumption is that Tara’s world is a love novel.  Well, Tara is a very loving person indeed and would love to live in a fairy tale all her life but she is under no illusion of how ugly this world is. You then went and answered yourself by arguing that the Allah of the Quran made no ” charges” that Muslims and their sheikhs made.  

Sunni Islam is decentralized.  Sunnis do not have to submit to interpretation of any specific scholars they do not agree with.  Sheila eloquently discussed that in one of her posts in regard to hijab.  The way I was raised as a member of a Sunni family with many “go to” sheikhs is to use your own brain to decide right from wrong.  Occasionally, literal interpretation of Quranic texts do not make sense so you refuse that literal meaning and you move on.  Shariaa law was perhaps a civilized law 1500 years ago in the context of a culture that at that time called for burying female infants alive.  It is not acceptable in the 21 century and most ordinary Muslims in Syria believe in the same.

Now to bring Ibn Taymiah from 1400 years ago and to argue that your fear of Islam is justified is analogous to bin Laden claiming that Christians want to launch a crusade against Muslims. Do I need to remind you that the most recent massive genocide was in former Yugoslavia committed by the Christian Serbs against the Muslim Bosnian.  This was not a history from 1500 years ago.  This was early 1990s.  Is that enough reason to make one Christianphobe?  It was good enough for bin Laden and exact similar logic is good enough for Islamophobes…
Do you not agree now?      
      

September 6th, 2011, 9:19 pm

 

Husam said:

@ Tara:

I would add ….or the Evangelical Cowboy Bush Sr. & Jr. hailing from Crawford Texas using 9/11 as a pretext to launch 2 wars causing 1 million+ muslism dead and counting.

September 6th, 2011, 9:41 pm

 

Tara said:

Aboud@224

I did not understand it either.  I think it is called logorrhea.

Here are the lyrics for May has a little lamb.  It is a nice nursery rhyme song but there have been several case reports of utilizing it in incoherent posts.  

http://kids.niehs.nih.gov/lyrics/mary.htm 

September 6th, 2011, 10:08 pm

 

ann said:

Turkey’s main opposition after meeting with Assad: Syrian regime wants reform

06 September 2011

http://www.todayszaman.com/news-255995-turkeys-main-opposition-after-meeting-with-assad-syrian-regime-wants-reform.html

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has concluded that Syrian regime makes efforts to address problems caused by Syrians’ expectations for freedom, equality and equal opportunity after meeting with Syria’s embattled President Bashar Al Assad.

Faruk Loğoğlu, CHP’s deputy chairman, told reporters after concluding three-day visit to Syria with four CHP deputies that the CHP committee saw that Syrian officials and Assad understand there is a problem in Syria and they are competing with time in addressing demands of the people. He said the Syrian regime is indeed making efforts toward reform but that the CHP committee also understand that they have a time problem and that everything cannot be at once.

Loğoğlu and his team traveled to several regions in Syria accompanied by local administrators and officials and they will present their findings in a report to CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu. Loğoğlu said the committee met with Assad and Parliament Speaker Mahmoud al-Abrash in Damascus.

CHP Gaziantep deputy Ali Serindağ, Mersin deputy Aytuğ Atıcı, Hatay deputies Refik Eryılmaz and Mehmet Ali Edipoğlu were in the CHP committee who visited Syria to what they said “investigate incidents in the neighboring country that were often differently interpreted by the media.”

He added that Syrian authorities are not saying that there is no problem in the country but claim that people’s legitimate demands are hijacked by some radical armed criminal elements that have links with Al Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood.

He said the Syrian authorities allege that incidents in Syria are inspired and supported by foreign circles and that the media is playing a very negative role in this. “They say events are exaggerated and wrongly reported,” Loğoğlu said.

CHP official added that there is a problem in the neighboring country but the Syrian authorities have that will to overcome this and both Syrian officials and Assad expressed this.

He noted that both Assad and other Syrian officials argued that the government is planning to make reforms regarding freedom of the press and laws on political parties, started national dialogue process and planning amendments to the constitution.

He said all these show that the Syrian regime has a will to make reforms, adding that the dilemma is if the opposition will give him a chance and time.

Loğoğlu added that the CHP is against any foreign interference into Syria and that the country’s domestic affairs only belong to Syria and its solution will be found by the Syrian people.

Before going to Latakia, the CHP deputies visited the Yayladağı district of the southern province of Hatay in Turkey along the Syrian border on Sunday to meet with Syrian refugees who had fled the violence in their country.

In Damascus, Abrash and Loğoğlu reviewed current events in Syria, foreign interference, incitement campaigns to undermine Syria’s role and destabilize its security, Syria’s state-run Sana news agency, which often distorts facts related to incidents in the country, reported on Monday. According to Sana, Abrash stressed that the reform process will continue in order to build a strong Syria, adding that the awareness of the Syrian people will foil all attempts to weaken national unity.

September 6th, 2011, 10:23 pm

 

True said:

I say, It would be a political master move if the opposition throws its Ace and accepts the T.A.L initiative “Unconditionally”.

Very comprehensive road map leads astutely to pull out Bashar’s teeth and claws one by one with his full admittance. It’s a win-win scenario by all means to the opposition.

(Opposition, Betho) => (Accept, Refuse), The opposition gains the round, gives something solid to hesitant countries to take a tough stand, and puts pressure on Russia, China, IBSA and UN

(Opposition, Betho) => (Accept, Accept), The opposition gains a legitimate in-house representation and access to the State and its resources in preparation to the biggest election battle

(Opposition, Betho) => (Refuse, Accept), The opposition loses credibility and should be prepared for multiple counter attacks from Russia, China, T.A.L, and IBSA

(Opposition, Betho) > (Refuse, Refuse), Both sides lose credibility and legitimacy

At this time the opposition needs professional politicians to take the lead, utilise the revolution stupendous attainment and transform it into tangible victory.

September 6th, 2011, 10:25 pm

 

beaware said:

Adnan Bakkour freed? The Italian, Japanese and Tunisian ambassadors return to Syria?

http://www.alalam.ir/ambassadors-italy-tunisia-return-damascus

افاد مراسل قناة العالم الاخبارية في سوريا اليوم الثلاثاء أن سفيري ايطاليا وتونس انضما الى قائمة
الدبلوماسيين العائدين الى دمشق بعد عودة السفير الياباني.

وقال المراسل: “أن قوات الامن السورية تمكنت مساء امس الاثنين من تحرير القاضي عدنان بكور من ايدي العصابات المسلحة التي قامت بخطفه في مدينة الرستن”.

واوضح أن القاضي نقل الى المستشفى بسبب تردي حالته الصحية، مشيرا الى أن خاطفيه اجبروه على تصوير مقاطع من الفيديو يتهم فيها النظام السوري بالقمع والقتل.

وكان قد أختطف مسلحون مجهولون البكور الإثنين الماضي، وقال مصدر أمني سوري، وفقا لوكالة الأنباء السورية سانا: “إن خاطفي البكور قاموا بنقله إلى جبل الزاوية إمعانا في التضليل والتمويه”.

واكد أن الجهات الأمنية المختصة تواصل تعقب ورصد تحركات المسلحين لتحرير البكور.

September 6th, 2011, 10:26 pm

 

Darryl said:

227. TARA said:

Tara,

1. For some one who read the Qur’an and Ahadith, you sure have asked many question in the past to confirm statements made by a few non-Muslims over the past months. I will give you the benefit of the doubt.

2. I was not even talking about Ibn Tayemiah. The Qur’an and Ahdith speak for themselves, after all Ibn Tayemiah was using them and did not invent any new scripture or Ahadith himself. He was using what was available then and today.

3. Do you believe in a government based on Sharia with its foundations based on the Qur’an, Ahadith that codified a 7th century Arab civilization or a constitution like what western nations have that allow you to soar like an eagle instead of dwelling among flightless turkeys?

September 6th, 2011, 10:37 pm

 

ss said:

229. “It is a nice nursery rhyme song”

Wait a minute; this song is not for you. I have a better nursery song for you. You should listen to it before you sleep. I am sure your Tlass and Aboud will love it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=b4W5rX63INc#!

God bless Assad soria, HA, and the islamic republic of Iran. Khalid Tlass; do not mess around. If Shabeeha is what you describe us; we are all to be Shabeeha of the Assad. Do not mess around with HA, Iran, and Syria; we will be your masters for years to come

September 6th, 2011, 10:38 pm

 

Aboud said:

“Do not mess around with HA, Iran, and Syria; we will be your masters for years to come”

Ha ha ha ha he he he he he ho ho ho ho. That bitch Besho’s writ doesn’t extend much further than the presidential palace.

How come the X-Box president hasn’t been outside of Damascus since this all began? Does junior dare take a foreign trip? I’m sure there would be a palace coup the moment he leaves Syrian airspace.

It’s been a loooooong time since I’ve seen a picture of Besho in Homs. Does anyone still put Besho pics on their cars anywhere? 🙂

Qeeeeeeerd wallaQ! Qelo la hal ehmar taba3Qon eQ3ood 3aQQQQel wallaQQQQ

September 6th, 2011, 10:49 pm

 

True said:

@ 229. Tara & ABOUD

Once I told a horn (can’t recall his alias) that “Menehbkes tend to cipher their intellectual arguments so it could be only deciphered by Menhebkes”

what a waste of space!!

@ SS

I’m not in the mood to give you a kick and get you down on your knees (You might be lucky and get to do some prostrating on Betho’s portrait), but I’ll tell you what, you do enjoy chucking your nose in funny places!!

@ Khalid Tlass

C’mon bro you never offended us, and surely one day you’ll be rewarded with bombarding Qurdaha using your fav Mig-29.

Don’t listen to those heartbroken “offended” Menhebkes, just tell them to chuck their ”offence thermometer” into somewhere more close to reality where 2500 innocent Sunnis slaughtered by Alawi militias and see how it feels.

September 6th, 2011, 10:50 pm

 
 

ss said:

Aboud;

You should leave your home and you will see hundred thousands of lions out there to get you.

I do not want you to call me from now Menhebak. I WANT EVERY ONE HERE TO CALL ME SHABEEH. People like you, Tara, and Tlass needs shabee7a and I am honered to be the biggist shabee7 of the president Assad.

This is my gift for your beloved Tlass.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1QXLuSFw60&feature=related

God bless Syria, Iran, and HA

Tlass; will be your masters for years to come

September 6th, 2011, 10:54 pm

 

Abughassan said:

http://www.alarabonline.org/index.asp?fname=%5C2011%5C09%5C09-06%5C948.htm&dismode=x&ts=6-9-2011%207:33:39
Translation: democracy is only good for Europe if the new regimes are shaped to meet the needs of the “civilized world”.

September 6th, 2011, 10:59 pm

 

Tara said:

Darryl

Let us make a table of massive genocides and crimes committed against humanity in the 20 th century. Anyone, feel free to add:

1- The Holocaust: Christian German murdered 5 million jews.
2- Former Yugoslavis: Orthodox Christian Serbs murdered ? 200.000 Muslim Bosnians

Now let me remind you with Syrian Muslims tolerance and acceptance of Orthodox Christian Arminians into Syria.

Islamophobes or Christianphobe? Who killed more in the name if religion? Both are 2 faces of one coin.

September 6th, 2011, 11:00 pm

 

Revolution said:

225. Dear abughassan,
You said: ” Ashraf Al-Miqdad is a liability for the opposition, he wants another Libya in Syria after seeing the success of the NATO bombing campaign in that country……I struggled to find a diplomatic way to describe Miqdad’s plan not because he is worthy of respect but because I respect this forum”

Mr AlMiqdad is a Syrian activist. He is definitely more informed about the ground situation than most of us on this blog. His views on the necessity for military intervention are widely shared by a rapidly increasing segment of the uprising.

I would like to reassure you that unlike the assuming facad of unity of Jr’s camp, diversity of opinion is a genuine reflection of the revolution’s constituency. It is respected, embraced, and cherished by its leaders and activists.

Syrian citizens’ voices, every single one of them is an asset not a liability to the revolution.

September 6th, 2011, 11:02 pm

 

N.Z. said:

234. You are simply childish and vulgar. Please do not take this as an insult, I truly mean it.

We want to celebrate sooner, rather, than later a Syria free of tyranny and no one terrorize the other. Where the rule of law prevails, not the rule of jungle.

No shabeeha dreams. Have a good night.

September 6th, 2011, 11:06 pm

 

True said:

@ 238. ss

“I do not want you to call me from now Menhebak. I WANT EVERY ONE HERE TO CALL ME SHABEEH. People like you, Tara, and Tlass needs shabee7a and I am honered to be the biggist shabee7 of the president Assad”

Hehehehehehhe OMG!! This is hilarious hehhehe you rock bro

You’re SHA’7a’7 not SHABEEH just like your rabit of Golan Betho

September 6th, 2011, 11:07 pm

 

Abughassan said:

MB’s chief take on recent speculations about a future unity government…
http://www.alquds.co.uk/index.asp?fname=today%5C06qpt959.htm&arc=data%5C2011%5C09%5C09-06%5C06qpt959.htm

September 6th, 2011, 11:09 pm

 

Norman said:

What the Syrian government is waiting for is for the opposition to carry arms and fight, then all bets are off, the full wrath of the Syrian ideological army will be leashed and at that time Hama of 1982 will be nothing to what is coming,

May God save Syria.

September 6th, 2011, 11:17 pm

 

Darryl said:

Tara, where did I talk about genocide? Stay cool!

I will ask again: do you want sharia or secular constitution?

September 6th, 2011, 11:17 pm

 

Tara said:

Darryl

I already stated that many times in the past and in my first reply to you this evening. Of course secular constitution with complete separation between religion and state. Religion is to be practiced at home only. People should feel free to be as spirituals as their hearts desire but inside the privacy of their homes. Shariaa law is not suitable for our time. It was suitable in a culture where pagan were burying their infants alive.

September 6th, 2011, 11:28 pm

 

Ss said:

(deleted, inappropriate content) I would go with genocide. Is that okay Darryl; I don’t have to answer ur question. Let us talk genocide.

The question is clear, do u want Sharia law or secular?

Mom, let us stick with genocide, (deleted, inappropriate content)

September 6th, 2011, 11:39 pm

 

Darryl said:

Thanks for the last reply Tara. So are you not an Islamophobe who is “worried” about Sharia being placed as a hard ceiling with nails if I may add; above your head so that you cannot soar like an eagle?

I am sorry, I may have worked you up, no hard feelings on my part.

September 6th, 2011, 11:41 pm

 

Tara said:

Dear Darryl

We both don’t want Shariaa law. I think the difference between me and an Islamophobe is I embrace Islam, find peace and comfort in it just like billions of people worldwide. Embracing Islam in my mind does not mean I shut my brain dead and blindly accept this or that interpretations that do not make sense. Whereas

Isalmophobia is a radical abnormal thinking where the inflicted individuals get fixated that Islam is an evil religion therefore Muslims in general are all evil. They try to rationalize their hatred by bringing up to life 1500 old figures and interpretations that most ordinary Muslims are not aware of. Those Islamophobes are not willing to accept the fact that Muslims find peace, morality, and spirituality in their faith.

I am not worked up at all and I have no hard feeling in regard to this discussion whatsoever. Btw, we tried to find Australian Shiraz the other day but were not successful.

September 6th, 2011, 11:56 pm

 

ann said:

Western powers have Syria in their sights

5 September 2011

Having achieved regime change in Libya through military intervention, the Western powers and their regional allies now have Syria firmly in their sights as part of their plans for re-dividing the resource-rich Middle East.

They are intent on using the six-month long protests and civil conflict that the Baathist regime of President Bashar al-Assad has brutally suppressed—at least 2,000 people are believed to have been killed and more than 10,000 arrested—to unseat Assad in favour of a more pliant tool of US imperialism.

Such a government would sever its links with Iran and Hezbollah in Lebanon, and reach an accommodation with Israel, as part of Washington’s goal of isolating and ultimately overthrowing the government in Tehran.

The US and the European powers have thus far stopped short of threatening military force against Syria, but this could change. Ben Rhodes, the director of strategic communications at the National Security Council, said that Libya provided a model for how the US would use its military power where its interests were threatened, but, “How much we translate to Syria remains to be seen”

“The Syrian opposition doesn’t want foreign military forces but do want more countries to cut off trade with the regime and break with it politically”, he added.

Washington, London, France and Berlin are working together to bring the broadest possible diplomatic and economic pressure to bear on Syria in what Secretary of State Hillary Clinton called an “international chorus of condemnation”, to lay the basis for more aggressive action in the future.

On Tuesday, the Obama administration announced fresh sanctions, banning Americans from doing business with Assad’s foreign minister and two other senior officials, and freezing their assets in the US. The US had earlier imposed sanctions on more than 30 Syrian officials, including Assad, and companies, and banned the import of Syrian oil or petroleum products.

The move was largely symbolic, as the US has no trade relations with Syria, More significant economic sanctions were imposed by the European Union. On Friday, the EU, which takes almost 95 percent of Syria’s oil, banned the import of all oil and gas products from Syria

These sanctions follow condemnations of the Syrian regime and demands for Assad to step down from US President Barack Obama and France, Germany and Britain.

The imperialist powers have been unable to get the UN Security Council to agree on a resolution calling for an arms embargo and financial sanctions against Assad and members of his regime due to opposition from Russia and China, but they are still seeking to get a resolution condemning Syria’s violent crackdown on the protests.

In an ominous move, reminiscent of the bogus claims of Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction” used as the pretext for regime change, US and Israeli intelligence are claiming that Syria has a cache of chemical weapons and the means to deliver them.

Fox News cited the “belief” of US intelligence services that “Syria’s nonconventional weapons programs include significant stockpiles of mustard gas, VX and Sarin gas and the missile and artillery systems to deliver them.”

Israel’s ambassador to the US stated candidly “We see a lot of opportunity emerging from the end of the Assad regime.”

Turkey, a key US ally in the region, is stepping up the pressure on Assad and could yet act as a Western proxy for a military attack on Syria.

A few weeks ago, Ahmet Davutoglu, Turkey’s foreign minister, delivered an ultimatum to Damascus calling for an immediate cessation of violence by Syria’s security forces.

Ankara has threatened to recall its ambassador to Damascus, as Saudi Arabia and the Gulf sheikdoms have already done, as a prelude to open military conflict. The Turkish government also warned that it would freeze all its investment in Syria, believed to be worth some $260 million. The Syrian economy is already reeling under the conflict, the cost of palliative measures announced by Assad earlier in the year, and the loss of tourism that accounts for 15 percent of the economy.

Last week, Turkey’s president Abdullah Gul declared he had “lost confidence” in the Assad regime, “Clearly we have reached a point where anything would be too little too late”, he said.

“Today in the world there is no place for authoritarian administrations, one-party rule, closed regimes”, he continued, threatening Assad that such governments could be “replaced by force” if their leaders did not make changes.

One of Turkey’s concerns is that Damascus has not done enough to suppress the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which Ankara believes operates from bases in Syria’s Kurdish northeastern provinces and supplies weaponry and other support to Kurdish oppositionists in Turkey’s southeast. The PKK seeks to establish an autonomous Kurdish state, adjacent to Turkey’s borders with Syria, Iran and Iraq, also home to significant Kurdish minorities.

This year has seen numerous demonstrations and protests in Istanbul, Izmir and the southeast, which security forces have dispersed with lethal force. Ankara has also bombed Kurdish villages in Turkey and Iraq following terrorist attacks on its armed forces, presumed to be the work of the PKK. Turkey also fears that the on-going unrest in Syria will lead to an influx of refugees from Syria, as happened after the 1991 Gulf War when hundreds of thousands of Kurds sought to flee Iraq.

Ankara has thus far been stymied by the lack of credible and united opposition forces to replace the Assad regime. It has therefore hosted several conferences of Syrian dissidents in an attempt to form a unified opposition with which Turkey and the major powers can do business. Last week, Syrian oppositionists meeting in Turkey announced the formation of the Syrian National Council, consisting of 94 members and with Burhan Ghalioun as president.

Ghalioun, an academic at Paris’s Sorbonne University who has lived outside Syria for most of the time since the 1970s, took part in Syria’s short-lived Damascus Spring in 2000-2001, soon after the present president took over from his father.

Syria’s Kurdish oppositionists largely boycotted the conference, accusing Turkey of seeking control of the anti-Assad movement through the medium of the Muslim Brotherhood. Barzan Bahram, a Syrian Kurdish writer, stated, “The Muslim Brotherhood is trying to exploit the change that is about to take place in Syria for their own gain. And the Turkish government is throwing its full support behind the Islamic groups to bring them to the forefront.”

In addition, Saudi Arabia is financing Sunni Salafist armed militants, many of whom returned radicalised by their experiences in Afghanistan and Iraq. The Salafists are cultivating sectarianism against the minority Shia and Alawite sect to which the Assad and top brass in the military belong. Last month saw the discovery of covert arms shipments to Syria by Saudi-backed Lebanese politicians allied to former Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

Syrian opposition figures also plan to visit Egypt September 8, to seek backing from the military junta.

Washington has long had plans to unseat Assad, but has lacked a credible opposition leadership. To this end, it has since 2005 funded external opposition groups, usually secular and often former regime supporters, and begun to train oppositionists. It has also funded the “human rights centres” that have provided the casualty figures and “eyewitness” reports to social network sites and the corporate media. The Damascus Centre for Human Rights is in partnership with the US National Endowment for Democracy while others receive funding from the Democracy Council and the International Republican Institute.

The deposing of Muammar Gaddafi by Western-military intervention has become a signal for the anti-Assad movement to shift openly to military conflict. Previously, the oppositionists denied Assad’s claims of their being armed, despite the fact that Muslim Brotherhood and Salafist oppositionists have been using antitank weapons and heavy machine guns for months, and the deaths of scores of military and security personnel.

On Sunday, Mohammad Rahhal, a leader of the Revolutionary Council of the Syrian Coordination Committees, told the London-based, Saudi-owned As-Sharq al-Awsat newspaper that the Council had decided to arm the Syrian “revolution”. He said, “We made our decision to arm the revolution which will turn violent very soon because what we are being subjected to today is a global conspiracy that can only be faced by an armed uprising.”

“The Arab countries, which are supposed to help and support us, are cowards, and they refuse to act,” he added. “Therefore, we will follow the Afghan example; when the Afghans were asked: Where will you get the weapons? They answered: As long as the United States is here, there will be weapons.”

Syrian protesters now carry banners calling for a no-fly zone over Syria, like that imposed in Libya. One banner read, “We want any [intervention] that stops the killing, whether Arab or foreign.”

The threats are being taken seriously by Tehran. On August 28, Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi told the official IRNA news agency, “Syria is the front-runner in Middle Eastern resistance (to Israel) and NATO cannot intimidate this country with an attack … If, God forbid, such a thing happened, NATO would drown in a quagmire from which it would never be able to escape.”

September 6th, 2011, 11:56 pm

 

Darryl said:

Thanks Tara, Islamophobes are more fearful of Muslims demanding Sharia than actually thinking about the person’s religion, please remember we live in a secular society as you say religion should stay at home. This is already happening here in Australia, some Muslim groups asking for Sharia which they left behind to free themselves from bondage, hence I have become concerned.

I am happy to send you a bottle of my finest Australian Shiraz from my cellar, a big McLaren vale Maglieri Sharks block Shiraz. Would you like one?

September 7th, 2011, 12:12 am

 

ann said:

Recalled envoys back to Syrian capital

Italian, Japanese and Tunisian ambassadors to Syria have returned to Damascus after they were recalled by their governments over the unrest in the Middle Eastern country, Press TV reports.

Wed Sep 7, 2011

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/197818.html

According to Syrian media outlets, Italian Achille Amerio, Japanese Masaki Kuneda, and Tunisian Mohammad Awiti returned to Syria to resume their diplomatic activities, a Press TV correspondent reported on Tuesday.

The return of the ambassadors was a positive signal that the situation in the country has improved, the Syrian media stated.

Bahrain, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia recalled their ambassadors to Syria last month, while Qatar was the first country to summon its ambassador with prior notice to Damascus.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March, with demonstrations being held both against and in support of President Bashar al-Assad’s government.

Meanwhile, the head of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Monday praised measures taken by Syrian authorities to defuse the unrest in the country and protect civilians.

Jakob Kellenberger praised Syrian authorities for granting ICRC access to the Damascus Central Prison and areas of unrest.

According to the Syrian government, unknown gangs are responsible for the death of many civilians and are the driving factor behind the recent unrest in the country.

September 7th, 2011, 12:20 am

 

Agatha said:

Dear Joshua Landis,
thanks for your blog! What do you and your blog-community think about this interpretation:
„Für Asad selbst dürften die Berichte des IKRK über die Verhältnisse in den syrischen Gefängnissen und Konfliktzonen aber eine interessante Alternative zu den vielleicht nicht sehr objektiven Informationen darstellen, die er von seinen Sicherheitsapparaten erhält.“

in short: The ICRC-Rapport gives President Asad independent informations, which he maybe don’t become from his secret services.

source: http://www.nzz.ch/nachrichten/politik/international/ikrk_darf_gefangene_in_syrien_besuchen_1.12359096.html

Do you have other ideas why Assad allows International Red Cross to visite syrian prisons?

September 7th, 2011, 1:50 am

 

some guy in damascus said:

it seems like there is a heavy crackdown in homs, my heart and mind goes to every homsi.
hope your safe aboud.

September 7th, 2011, 2:04 am

 

Revlon said:

Dears Beaware, Tara, and Aboud,
Inviting international observers to monitor ground events requires the following two preconditions that are not and could not be met.

First:Regime approval.
– Jr has categorically rejected any presence of independant media.
– Repeated requests for visits of UN and Red Cross humaniatarian missions were grudgingly accepted, and for a very brief period.
– Even Ambassadors of security council member states have been placed on short leash.
– Russia and China would not vote for a related UN resolution that would compromise their interests, which has been the support of Asad regime.

Second: Cessation of armed attacks to guarantee safety of observers or at least an offcial guarantee of their safety.
Such is incomprehensable.
– Thug One and the Mob have no political way out. To step down would be to avail the whol entourage to courts of justice for crimes against humanity.
– Their military option, an istinctive one, is their only recourse while waiting for someone take them out of their misery.

September 7th, 2011, 3:30 am

 

MNA said:

Revlon @ 133

“131. Dear MNA, your quoted 35 to 40% shall be held accountable for their complicity in the unfolding carnage of civilians on the hands of their supported regime.

Their responsibility shall be commensurate with the weight that their support was bearing on the suffering of every lost, tortured, or displaced soul.”

Dear Revlon,

You can call them whatever you want. At the end of the day it is a sizable chunk that no one can afford to ignore, specially, in a DEMOCRATIC system that we are all inspiring for.

September 7th, 2011, 3:57 am

 

Revlon said:

The uprising in Aleppo has recieved a needed boost from the public anger and grief at the death of the highly respected Sheikh Ibrahim Al Salqini.

A school sign cum Jr poster taking beating befor being torn by angry demonstrators.
Widening of demonstrations in Aleppo is bound to spread Jr’s forces even thinner and lift some pressure of the currently heavily targeted cities.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlyrdCz0PPk&feature=player_embedded#!
حلب || Aleppo : رجم بالاحذية وانزال صورة المجرم بشار 6-9

September 7th, 2011, 4:02 am

 

Revlon said:

256. Dear MNA
First, on democracy and the majority rule:
Assuming that your figures reflect the true representation of the support of Asad, namely 40%.
And assuming that you believe in the priniciples of democracy, including the rule of the majority.
I would like to invite you to join the opposition’s call for Asad to step down.

Second, on Justice and the rule of law:
The proprtion of the victims and syympathisers to the perpetrators and their supporters is irrelevent to the need to excise justice under the rule of law.
Crimes against humanity should be fairly addressed, irrespective of the proportion of the perpetrators or their supporters.

September 7th, 2011, 4:28 am

 

Mohammad Kamal Habbaba said:

Mohammad Kamal Habbaba
The author contradicted with himself such that the whole 7 reasons he counted are neutralized by the last paragraphs. According to the 7 reasons the west should support the ASSAD and pull support from the rebels to satisfy the 7 reasons, at the last paragraphs he said the west should leave the situation as it is (unstable) and if the regime collapses (Means instability too) buy boosting it with sanction. So killing the country is vital and it should be done slowly according to him. SO can we understand that the west is trying to buy time for themselves and the whole interest is not democracy but only western interests. West don’t have any interest in Syria actually, there is NO oil There is No Gas that worth’s fighting, Israel is not interested in Muslim Brotherhood Terrorism as it will lose stability in the middle east, Syria only wants its Golan back and a Palestinian recognition but The radicals in Syria Wants Whole Israel, SO WHO WANTS A DESTABILIZED SYRIA IN THE REGION SYRIA IS SAFETY PIN THE REGION. We all know the target is Iran, ok here is the point USA is not able to decide, so they should gamble. WHY? USA Never Gamble!!!! They know more then 70% of Syrians are supporting Al Asad and his popularity is rising, all the countries in the region EXCEPT Turkey (Doesn’t have the ability to take it’s own decision) are major minorities in Syria and they are whom Syria hosted them at their worst times like Armenians, Kurd and Iraqis and many… . SO American propaganda do not have the support of the majority internally and it is loosing support of real peaceful activists and apposition leaders. So what they are doing is just stay Stalled and supporting with too little and valueless things cause they are wining any way. If Assad is there then things are stable and they can look forward to Iran. Syria’s support to Iran military wise is valueless Assad will not trow everything to Iran while Israel is sitting there and even-though if he does, it is too funny, Syrian arms will end in few days, so Syria is neglectable according to USA. But if he leaves USA will have a postponed fight with the Muslims whom are planning to unite the middle east and thinking that they are using the USA for now!!!. SO the link of the Extreme Muslims in the Middle east is Linked with the extremists in Turkey, and Erdogan is a part of it and he (The group as whole) wants turkey to command the future big Islamic nation and he knows that all the conflicts in the region now will end up with a big union in the future and they want the lead (The new OTTOMANS) But there is lots of things that he is not counting. People never forget betrayers and he is prepossessing the btaryers label to TURKS. The Drawing is always the same Europe takes africa USA and Russia bargain on the middle east while China owns the world. USA have 2 Dogs in the middle east Turkey(poodle) and Israel(Rottweiler).

September 7th, 2011, 4:54 am

 

Basil W said:

This is my first time posting on SC, even though I have been following the blog (and the comments section) for a while. At first I sympathized with some of the presumably non sectarian protestors, and I respected people such as ‘Aboud’ who proclaimed themselves to be non-sectarian.

Unfortunately, I’m extremely disappointed that Aboud and other (such as ‘Tara,’ who has not condemned the venom spewed by the likes Abu Umar and Khalid Tlass the coward) who have turned to sectarian politics. As an agnostic with a strong Shia ‘ethnic’ identity, it angers me to see such people turn into hardcore sectarians. If such people (who are supposedly educated and well spoken) can have such underlying hatred towards other non Sunnis within the time span of a few months (despite there non being any evidence that Alawis in general condone the killings of ‘innocent’ Sunni civilians), then I’ve come to strongly believe that this a zero sum game. Any gain for the Sunnis is a loss for the minorities of the region.

Aboud,

You say that all Alawi ‘bases of power’ should be destroyed, yet at the same time you condemn the Shia actions against Sunnis in Iraq; despite the fact that the Sunnis of Iraq committed ten times more atrocities against the Shia of Iraq than the Alawis of Syria could’ve ever dreamed of committing towards Syria’s Saddam loving Sunnis. This proves that underneath your b.s. ‘secular’ exterior lies a hypocritical, double-standard, Sunni Arab sectarian pig. This is why Shia death squads had to retaliate against Sunni Arab Saddam loving pigs; if people like ‘Aboud’ (whom I used to view as tolerant and sincere, unfortunately), can indirectly justify Saddam’s (the Sunni pig and his Sunni piglets) savage oppression of innocent Shias and Kurds, and voice anger against Shia actions against MINORITY Iraqi Sunni Arabs (despite hundereds of years of Sunni Arab oppression and countless Sunni Arab planned acts of terrorism against Shia after the liberation of Iraq), while at the same time calling for revenge against the Alawis (Syria’s minority) for the leadership over the Syria’s Sunnis (the supposed majority), then I have no faith in the ‘democracy seeking’ pigs of Syria.

And don’t think I have love for Syria’s current regime; the Alawis should’ve stood with their Shia brethren against such Sunni anti-Shia prigs instead of facilitating the entry of Sunni jihadists into Iraq post-liberation. So in a way the regime (not the innocent Alawi and minority civilians, whom I’ll always wish to be victorious over Saddam loving Sunni pigs) desevere this Salafi backlash as they helped promote such ideologies via their support of such groups against the new SHIA DOMINATED Iraq.

September 7th, 2011, 5:23 am

 

Mina said:

258 Revlon
It seems people like you have no problem whatever impulsed any boost or momentum, isn’t it? It’s all God’s will to you, no?

September 7th, 2011, 7:05 am

 

Muhammad said:

@ 261

This is sooooo non-sectarian I\’ve almost fell off my chair.

If Alawis want to defend Assad regime at all costs then they are asking for a sectarian war. It\’s so sad. Bashar does not even care about the Alawis.

People came out asking for democracy, you called them armed gangs. It soon became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Give people a third way of genuine reform and they will take it. If the only options available to them are worshiping the village idiot (aka Bashar) or sectarian war then it is no wonder they will take the war option.

And don\’t BS us about Alawis and Shias being brothers. Shias considered Alawis as heretics until Assad came to power. I bet you the Alwais would not be allowed to practice their religion on Iran.

September 7th, 2011, 7:39 am

 

majedkhaldoon said:

There are some commentors who are deliberately changing the discussion from freedom and democracy. to make it religious,Sunni versus Shiite.they are wrong, and their discussion is meaningless,the issue is not religion, the issue is dignity,human rights,freedom,the regime is anti-freedom,it is a dictatorship,it wants to maintain all power in the hands of Assad family,and they treat syrian as slaves in their private farm,they have no respect at all,to the rights of every civilian in Syria.,the regime have 17 security forces institutions,in addition to hiring mercenaries(Shabbiha) and lately the use of the army who commited treason,the army paid by the people,but their work is to kill the people to protect the Assad.
The minorities have rights,and it should be protected,but the freedom and dignity of the great majority of the syrian people must be the priority number one, any discussion about Sunni versus shiite is worthless and not acceptable,it is an indirect way to support the regime, and it is a crime by those commentors.we will not forget.

September 7th, 2011, 7:49 am

 

Aboud said:

@261 Whatever.

For the life of me, I can’t find any mention anywhere that the ambassadors of Japan, Italy and Tunisia have come back to Damascus. Wishful thinking being reported as news.

Every once in a while, the head methi snorter in Damascus will try to show the other turds that he actually has a pair, and try to subdue Homs with his Alawite turd dominated army. It never works, but then again nothing original or clever ever came out of that cess pool, Qurdaha 🙂

What was so scary in the Arab League’s initiative that it scared the Baathists so much? The initiative guaranteed the X-Box child a job until 2013. I’m so glad he turned it down. Besho is his own worst enemy. Whoever is advising him, really really has it in for him 🙂

Besho is the only president so incompetent, he makes Husni Mubarak look good.

“According to the Syrian government, unknown gangs are responsible for the death of many civilians and are the driving factor behind the recent unrest in the country.”

After five months, the Qurdaha peasants still don’t know who it is they are fighting? *facepalm* For that alone, junior should lose his job.

September 7th, 2011, 7:53 am

 

Aboud said:

That’s it? THAT was your big offensive, Besho butt kissers? THAT was the extent of your attempt to subdue Homs? LOL! PUSSIES!!!!!! 🙂

September 7th, 2011, 8:28 am

 

Solitarius said:

So what the hell is going on in Homs? I’ve lost contact with people from some neighborhoods while people in other places have no idea what’s going on. Last time I talked to my friends they were seeing tens of gunment with big beards and shaved heads sporting Ak-47s, RPGs and machine guns mounted on cars. They were everywhere and imposing road blocks.. Electricity was cut off also in both phone-disconnected and connected areas.

September 7th, 2011, 9:02 am

 

Akbar Palace said:

France’s Alain Juppe: Syria committing ‘grave crimes’

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-14822636

France’s Foreign Minister Alain Juppe has accused the Syrian government of carrying out “crimes against humanity”.

Syrian forces are continuing their crackdown on protests, launching a new assault on the city of Homs and killing seven people, according to activists.

Residents said the centre of Homs was sealed off, phone lines had been cut and gunfire was ringing out.

More than 2,200 people have been killed in five months of protest against the rule of President Bashar al-Assad.

“The way [Syria has] suppressed the popular protests is unacceptable,” said Mr Juppe, according to the French AFP news agency.

He was speaking during a press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.

He said Syria could face further sanctions if it did not change course.

Last week the EU banned imports of Syrian oil – a decision criticised by Russia, which has been pressing calls for political dialogue.

The Assad government insists that the opposition protests are being organised by “terrorist cells” who are being armed and funded by an international conspiracy against Syria.

‘Non-stop gunfire’

Homs – Syria’s third-largest city – has seen rolling violence for months.

Wednesday’s large-scale security operation in the city involved tanks, troops and heavy gunfire, activists and locals said.

“All through the night, there was shooting. The gunfire didn’t stop,” a resident of the city told the Associated Press news agency by phone. “I can’t tell exactly what is going on because it’s too dangerous to go out.”

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said seven people were killed and 20 others wounded in the operation.

The latest reports suggest that Sunni parts of the city were targeted, says the BBC’s Owen Bennett Jones in neighbouring Beirut.

Most of Syria’s ruling establishment are Alawites, and Alawites also dominate the security forces, says our correspondent. Activists have previously reported the death of several Alawite residents in apparent revenge killings in the restive western city.

They have also reported an increasing number of defections among the mostly Sunni rank and file military in Homs and its surrounding countryside, but Syrian officials deny the claims.

The government insists that it has a reform programme in place, but opposition leaders say there can be no free and fair elections while the ruling Baath party is in power.

They have also refused to negotiate while it continues to kill peaceful protesters.

On Wednesday there were reports Syria had called off a visit by the Arab League chief.

The government gave no explanation for the postponement of Secretary-General Nabil al-Arabi’s trip, other than to say it was for “objective reasons”.

However, later reports said the Arab League chief would now visit – on Saturday.

The League has called for an end to the violence and spoken of the Syrian people’s legitimate aspirations for social and political reform.

Reports suggest Mr Arabi has some quite specific proposals, including the establishment of a multi-party government within three years.

September 7th, 2011, 9:05 am

 

OFF THE WALL said:

I Second MAJEDKHALDOON @ 264

September 7th, 2011, 9:12 am

 

Revlon said:

Gold Reserves vanish from Central Bank of Syria
2011/09/06
http://www.sooryoon.net/?p=32338
إختفاء إحتياطي الذهب السوري مع إستنزاف رؤوس أموال البنوك الخاصة

وأكدت مصادر مصرفية سورية مطلعة عن نقل أموال مصرف سورية المركزي إلى جهاز أمن الدوله, كما شملت تلك الاموال التي تم تحويلها إلى جهاز أمن الدولة احتياطيات البنوك الخاصة العاملة المودعة في المركزي والتي تمثل ثلاثة اضعاف رؤوس المصارف الخاصه حسب الانظمه لضمان عملياتها وأموال مودعيها. ويتولي حاليا الجهاز الامني أعمال الصرف المباشر إلى مختلف الوزارات بدلا من المركزي.

كما أفادت نفس المصادر عن نقل مخزون الذهب من خزائن مصرف سوريه المركزي وتحويلها إلى جهات مجهولة. وكذلك عن توقف الأجهزة الامنية من حراستها في المركزي.

وأكد الخبير الاقتصادي محمد كركوتي أن الرئيس بشار الأسد هَرَّب إلى لبنان ما يقرب من 23 مليار دولار أمريكي منذ اندلاع الثورة ضده وضخ ما يقرب من 5.8 مليار دولار أمريكي في خزائن أسرة الأسد وحلفائها.

More….

September 7th, 2011, 9:19 am

 

ATASSI said:

Attention Attention Attention
massacre in Homs now…
The Assad regime is in the process of committing a massacre in HOMS as I am writing .. they are using Tanks, and airpower ..
part of the army and Shabiha being used, I am sorry to say a specially trained Allawit thugs leading this effort
massacre
massacre
massacre

September 7th, 2011, 9:23 am

 

Aboud said:

Overnight there was alot of defections near the farms near Baba Amr. Everytime there are defections, the shabiha and security turds go ape. They took it out on Khaldia and Baba Esba3. There isn’t a shop open anywhere in Homs.

Some parts of the city have had their communication cut, but actually mobile seems still to be working in most of the city.

Seriously, no one is even intimidated by these displays of ineffectual ape-behavior any more, we’ve gotten used to it. After six month, Besho can’t come up with any original or creative way to deal with his setbacks. I think the guy must be drinking heavily by now, he has that look.

“Last time I talked to my friends they were seeing tens of gunment with big beards and shaved heads sporting Ak-47s, RPGs and machine guns mounted on cars.”

Did your friend have the presence of mind to take pictures or videos of this remarkable procession of bald-headed-RPG-armed-Salafis? I know it can’t be true, because all the armed Salafis were at my house watching movies. Tuesday is chick-flick night.

September 7th, 2011, 9:28 am

 

ATASSI said:

They are hitting the university in Homs too..

September 7th, 2011, 9:33 am

 

atassi said:

انفجار ضخم قرب المشفى العسكري و الكلية الحربية بالوعر اعقيه غطلاق
كثيف للنارو غقتحام مشفى البر و اعتقال الاشهداء و الجرحى

على المشفىبالوعر وخربوهاكلهاوهلئ رج الضرببكل حمص

September 7th, 2011, 9:37 am

 

Revlon said:

Soldiers on their way to another killing mission in Talbeeseh.
Smiles and Salutes
Hala bil Habeeb
Hala bishabab ettaybeh
Hala Abu 3ali!

Notice the baton with nails on its end, waved by one soldier.

Also notice the tank chain tread marks on the highway!
Repairing the extensive damage to the highway system from the prolonged and heavy use of tanks will be probably cost hundreds of millions of Dollars.
This would be the first major bill to be incurred by the Post-Asad Syrian economy.

09 -20-2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NuuelrBs5cg&feature=player_embedded#!
تلبيسة ـ مقطع مسرب الجيش السوري برفقة الشبيحة يتوجهون لقمع المتظاهرين بفرح شديد 04 09 2011

September 7th, 2011, 9:50 am

 

Abu Umar said:

” 261. Basil W said:

This is my first time posting on SC, even though I have been following the blog (and the comments section) for a while. At first I sympathized with some of the presumably non sectarian protestors, and I respected people such as ‘Aboud’ who proclaimed themselves to be non-sectarian”

Your ilk are the masters of sectarians, yet you have the audacity to deny it.

“Unfortunately, I’m extremely disappointed that Aboud and other (such as ‘Tara,’ who has not condemned the venom spewed by the likes Abu Umar and Khalid Tlass the coward) who have turned to sectarian politics.”

And yet in the following paragraph, you admit you are a sectarian. How hypocritical can you get?!

” As an agnostic with a strong Shia ‘ethnic’ identity, it angers me to see such people turn into hardcore sectarians.”

How the hell can you be angered by people turning into hardcore sectarians when you admit you have “a strong Shia ethnic identity”?
And how can you be a “Shi’a agnostic” when Ali ibn Abi Talib would have been the first to fight you?

” If such people (who are supposedly educated and well spoken) can have such underlying hatred towards other non Sunnis within the time span of a few months (despite there non being any evidence that Alawis in general condone the killings of ‘innocent’ Sunni civilians), then I’ve come to strongly believe that this a zero sum game. Any gain for the Sunnis is a loss for the minorities of the region.”

Spare me your hypocritical nonsense. Many Syrian Sunnis and other Sunnis hate the regime not just for its current crimes, but its past ones like Hama, Tadmur, Tal Za’tar where tens of thousands of Sunnis were slaughtered and yes, the overwhelming majority of Alawis support the actions of the regime proved by the army and mukhabarat units filled with Alawis involved in the crackdown.

“Aboud,

You say that all Alawi ‘bases of power’ should be destroyed, yet at the same time you condemn the Shia actions against Sunnis in Iraq; despite the fact that the Sunnis of Iraq committed ten times more atrocities against the Shia of Iraq than the Alawis of Syria could’ve ever dreamed of committing towards Syria’s Saddam loving Sunnis.”

And many Shi’ites across the spectrum support the brutal Syrian regime. How are they any different from Saddam-loving Sunnis?

” This proves that underneath your b.s. ’secular’ exterior lies a hypocritical, double-standard, Sunni Arab sectarian pig.”

This proves that underneath your b.s ‘secular’ exterior lies a hypocritcial, double-standard, Raafidhi, Shu’oobi sectarian pig. You think the Shi’ites won’t use brutal methods just like Saddam to put down a Sunni rebellion. Yes, Sunnis oppressed Shi’ites throughout history and I have no doubt that Shi’ites would have done the same thing(and they did) if they were the majority. Look at their support of the Asad regime.

“This is why Shia death squads had to retaliate against Sunni Arab Saddam loving pigs; if people like ‘Aboud’ (whom I used to view as tolerant and sincere, unfortunately), can indirectly justify Saddam’s (the Sunni pig and his Sunni piglets) savage oppression of innocent Shias and Kurds, and voice anger against Shia actions against MINORITY Iraqi Sunni Arabs (despite hundereds of years of Sunni Arab oppression and countless Sunni Arab planned acts of terrorism against Shia after the liberation of Iraq), while at the same time calling for revenge against the Alawis (Syria’s minority) for the leadership over the Syria’s Sunnis (the supposed majority), then I have no faith in the ‘democracy seeking’ pigs of Syria.”

Everything which you mentioned Shi’ites are guilty of and your fellow Shi’ites have long justified the oppression of Syrian Sunnis from the time of Khomeini.

“And don’t think I have love for Syria’s current regime; the Alawis should’ve stood with their Shia brethren against such Sunni anti-Shia prigs instead of facilitating the entry of Sunni jihadists into Iraq post-liberation. So in a way the regime (not the innocent Alawi and minority civilians, whom I’ll always wish to be victorious over Saddam loving Sunni pigs) desevere this Salafi backlash as they helped promote such ideologies via their support of such groups against the new SHIA DOMINATED Iraq.”

Yes, the Jewish Neocons, whom many Iraqi Shi’ites planned the war with, handed Iraq over to you on a silver platter and who can forget your leaders like the Hakims, Nouri al-Maliki, Ibrahim al-Ja’fari smiling and laughing with Bush, Rumsfeld and the Jewish war criminal, Wolfowitz, while declaring Abu Bakr and Umar infidels. Wolfowitz is better than Abu Bakr and Umar?!

September 7th, 2011, 9:52 am

 

Revlon said:

Hi Atassi, Aboud, thank you for keeping us in touch with the realities on the ground in Homs.

Free Homsies shall not bow but to God.
Allah, Sooriya, 7urriyeh w Bas!

September 7th, 2011, 9:57 am

 

Revlon said:

This is the major defection that Aboud probably alluded to earlier.
An officer and his unit of 22 soldiers defected today in Homs.
Video to follow!
This is why the army and shbbeha are shooting like mad!
Tash 7ajaron!
about an hour ago
حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom
أموي مباشر #syria ◄ حمص >> انشقاق 22 مجند مع الضابط المسؤول في حي من احياء حمص ,, تم تصوير الفيديو الذي يعلنون فيه انشقاقهم ,, ولكن خدمة الانترنت سيئة جدا جدا ,, الدعاء الدعاء يا شباب

September 7th, 2011, 10:03 am

 

Revlon said:

A plea from the Free Officers Movement
To PM of Turkey,

May peace be upon you,
We are displeased and stunned at receiving the news of the disappearance of our Spokesman Colonel H Harmoush after meeting with a Turkish security officer, in one of the Syrian refugees camps in Turkey on 29-08-2011.

Such incident is bound to damage relations between Turkey and Syrian people and to have happened with the full kinowledge of the Turkish authorities.

We hereby urge you to clarify the whereabouts, and gurantee the safety of Colonel harmoush!

In the name of the Syrian people, whom you have stood by in this current plight, we urge you to resolve this issue as soon as possible, noting that you generously offered safe refuge to Syrians in distress!


نداء صادر عن حركة الضباط الاحرار للحكومة التركية

September 7th, 2011, 10:24 am

 

Revlon said:

Ibn AlWaleed Phalange are answering the call of duty to defend civilians.
They have announced the destruction of
– 2 army personnel carriers near the Church of Um Alzinnar and
– 4 armored vehicles in AlWadi neighbourhood.
– Assad forces are only good for shelling form distance. They are too cowards to come near. Their helmets and bodies are strewn at the outskirts of the attacked neighbourhoods.

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom
أموي مباشر #syria ◄ كتيبة ضباط خالد بن الوليد بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم من أبطال خالد بن الوليد تدمير حافلتين زيل كنيسة أم الزنار وتدمير ٤ مدرعات لكلاب الأسد بحي الوادي كلاب الأسد يقصفون من بعيد لكن على أقدامهم يخافون أبشركم والله الخوذ وأسلحة لهم مرمية وجثثهم تملئ مداخل الأحياء كلما حاولو الدخول وأبطالنا تدافع ببسالة ويستميتو بدفاع عن أهالي حمص أحفاد خالد على أرض المعركة الحقيقة النصر أو الشهادة

8 hours ago

September 7th, 2011, 10:35 am

 

Revlon said:

The call Syrian Revolution Website call for independant observers; A view from the trenches!

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom

مشاركة من – سوري حر :: يعني والله عيب أحيانا ياشباب أكبر صفحة بالثورة السورية ( صفحة الثورة السورية ضد بشار الأسد) منحس انها خارج الأحداث قال بدها تحرجو للنظام

والله لو حدى غيرها عم يقترح هالاقتراح مابيزعل الواحد, يعني كأنها بعد6 شهور ماعرفت مين هاد النظام

قال انو المراقبين الدوليين بدون يحرجوا النظام , أعزائي مدراء الصفحة ” المجمتع الدولي موناقصو شي ليعرف انو النظام كذاب” وعم يدبح بالشعب, “””” مراقبين دوليين “”” متل يلي عم يتضحك على حالو

النظام مابيسقط غير بالقوة و المظاهرات هلئ عم تطالب بالحظر الجوي والحماية الدولية وخلينا نحنا ندعمهم اعلاميا من خلال المطالبة ايضا بالحظر الجوي والحماية الدولية من خلال بيان يصدر عن اتحاد تنسيقيات الثورة السورية لازم كل صفحات الثورة تتحد على طلب الحماية الدولية والحظر الجوي لازم كلنا نغير صور صفحات الثورة ونحط صورة بتعبر عن طلب الثوار للحماية الدولية والحظر الجوي يعني المعارضة ما اتفقت على شي ونحنا كمان ما اتفقنا !!!! على الاقل صفحاتنا بتمثل الثوار على الارض وطز بهيك معارضة فاشلة لازم نحنا نتحد وكلنا نطلب هالشي وخلي كلما حكى واحد من تنسيقية شي منطقة متل حمص ادلب درعا دير الزور ودمشق وحماة واللاذقية والقامشلي …….

قبل من انهاء المكالمة الاشارة الى ان الثوار يطلبون الحماية الدولية والتدخل الدولي والحظر الجوي لضرب قواعد النظام العسكرية على غرار ما حصل في ليبيا وان شاء الله سيحصل كل الخير

17 hours ago

September 7th, 2011, 10:44 am

 

ann said:

“Arab spring”, arms sales, human rights and double standards

Sep 7, 2011

http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/09/07/55782485.html

The “Arab spring” has dramatically changed the whole picture of world affairs. One of the spheres most directly affected by the events in the Middle East is the huge arms market.

Recently, the Jerusalem Post published an article headlined, “For Russia, new Middle East will be a tough arms market”. While objectively stating the factual line and tendencies in the changing arms market in the Middle East after the “Arab spring”, the article reiterates a number of old ideological clichés connecting the arms sales to “oppressive regimes” with the notorious issue of “human rights”.

Citing a well-known American expert on Russia Ariel Cohen who spoke of Russian arms sales to Libya and Syria, the paper says that “Russia has much thicker skin over the perceived violations of human rights.”

Well, too much has already been said about the very notion of “human rights” as a double-edged weapon used selectively whenever the West sees it appropriate. But let’s look at the whole issue of arms sales from another angle.

The market is tense, and all buyers and suppliers are in tough competition for shares of the market. While things go on more or less smoothly, actually no one, even in the democratic and “human rights obsessed” West, cares whether the regime buying weapons is oppressive or not. The West and primarily the U.S. have been and still remain the main global suppliers of arms. And their customers include a wide range of regimes which can hardly be called democratic.

The U.S. is the main arms supplier to Bahrain, which launched a crackdown on protesters in February and March this year. The U.S. and Western Europe supplied arms to Hosni Mubarak’s regime in Egypt which receives $1.3 billion U.S. military aid annually.

The main Western customers in the region are Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Things are apparently stable there but it does not make the regimes more democratic and “human rights loving”. Nevertheless, the U.S. has contracts to sell Saudi Arabia advanced weaponry worth some $67 billion over the next decade, making it the biggest arms deal in US history. And Germany agreed in July to sell Saudi Arabia 200 Leopard 2A7+ main battle tanks for $2.85 billion.

Why? The answer is obvious. Saudi Arabia is the strongest counterbalance to Iranian influence in the region, and Iran in Western eyes, is “the worst guy”. Therefore, the nature of the Saudi regime matters little, or does not matter at all.

As for the U.K., recently the Ministry of Defence openly admitted that British forces have trained Saudi Arabia’s National Guard in the art of “public order enforcement” and in “weapons, fieldcraft and general military skills training, as well as incident handling, bomb disposal, search, public order and sniper training”. Also, 1,200 British-trained National Guards were used to suppress the revolution in Bahrain in March. The UK also licensed the sale of tear gas, crowd control ammunition, stun grenades, assault and sniper rifles and sub-machine guns for export to Bahrain. In general, as recently revealed by The Times, British arms exports to the governments of the Middle East and North Africa grew by a third from February to June this year against the same period in 2010 and now account for £30.5 million.

It is highly unlikely that such as things tear gas or crowd control ammunition will ever be used in conventional warfare. And there still remains the question of their consistency with democracy and human rights.

Now, the West is trying to put the blame on Russia and China for supplying arms to regimes like that of Muammar Gaddafi in Libya or Bashar Assad in Syria. But such claims only demonstrate the double standard policy and reflect only the desire to push the strong competitors from the lucrative market.

There have not been any U.N. sanctions against Syria (like no sanctions were imposed on the British government after its crackdown on thugs in the London suburbs in August), therefore there are no obstacles for Russia to fulfill its government-to-government contracts with Syria.

But when it comes to internationally imposed sanctions, Russia acts in full compliance with them. Thus, when in 2010 sanctions were imposed on Iran, Russia immediately cancelled the deal for five S-300 anti-missile systems. Now, Russia risks facing an Iranian lawsuit in the International Court of Justice. But this is a clear legal case when Russia was obliged and did act in full compliance with international law.

So, maybe it would be better for self-appointed human rights advocates in the West whose right hand is used to wave pro-democracy slogans while the left one sells arms to oppressive regimes, to revise their policy of double standards?

September 7th, 2011, 10:45 am

 

Atassi said:

please see brave Assad Army ” the Noram’s “..executing the dead!!! .. this has been send to the IC for documentations ..NO immunity for the killer, same fate

September 7th, 2011, 10:46 am

 

Revlon said:

Another argument in favor of military intervention in Syria,
from Midan Coordination Committee, Damascus
Published on The same Syrian revolution Website

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom

أموي مباشر #syria ◄ اذا كان احد نبيحة النظام يخرج على قناة الجزيرة و يقول نحن مستعدين للقتل ست اشهر أخرى !!!!!!

و اذا كانت ايران تقوم بالتدخل عسكرياً في سوريا من خلال ارسال الاسلحة و المستشارين و حتى المرتزقة سواءاً كانوا ايرانين او من حزب اللات

و اذا كانت العراق تمد النظام بالنفط لتعويض خسائره الاقتصادية بعد كل ذلك ……….

أليس التدخل الخارجي حاصل فعليا في سوريا من خلال هؤلاء المشاركين في العدوان على الشعب السوري

الى كل من يرفضون التدخل الخارجي في سوريا …… أليس هذا قمة التدخل الخارجي ؟؟؟؟؟؟

فاين انتم منه …….

تنسيقية الثورة السورية في حي الميدان

18 hours ago

September 7th, 2011, 10:51 am

 

ann said:

China opposes putting pressure on Syria to solve internal crisis

2011-09-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2011-09/07/c_131114296.htm

BEIJING, Sept. 7 (Xinhua) — China said on Wednesday that the Syrian crisis should be solved through dialogue and consultations instead of simply putting pressure on the country.

“We think the first thing to do is to ease tensions in Syria in order to avoid escalation,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said during a regular press briefing.

Jiang’s comments came in response to a question regarding whether or not China will communicate with the Syrian opposition, as Russia has already received a delegation from the Syrian opposition.

Jiang said that simply putting pressure on the country offers no solution and the correct approach to solving the crisis will be to launch a Syria-dominated inclusive political process.

“We should give Syria more time to carry out its commitment to reform,” Jiang said.

Syria has endured unrest since mid-March, when anti-government protests broke out in the southern province of Daraa and spread to other cities.

September 7th, 2011, 10:55 am

 

Akbar Palace said:

President Frizz-Head NewZ

Libya rebels: Gadhafi surrounded, forces ready to capture or kill

Ousted Libyan leader has been on the run since rebels took over Tripoli last month, reports conflicting about his exact location.

Libyan rebels are surrounding the toppled leader Muammar Gadhafi, and it is only a matter of time until he is captured or killed, the spokesman for the rebels’ military council in Tripoli, Anis Sharif, said Wednesday.

He did not disclose Gadhafi’s whereabouts, but said he was still in Libya.

Sharif was quoted by the pro-rebel Free Libya TV as saying that Gadhafi had been tracked using high technology and human intelligence.

“Gadhafi is trapped in a 60-kilometer radius area surrounded by forces of the (rebels’) Transitional National Council,” he said.

“He can’t get out,” said Sharif, who added that rebel forces were preparing to either capture him or kill him.

Gadhafi has been on the run since rebels overran his fortified compound in Tripoli in late August, amid conflicting reports about his exact location.

Early Wednesday, Gadhafi’s spokesman Moussa Ibrahim was quoted as saying that the former strongman has not fled the country.

The comments came a day after a convoy of Libyan vehicles was reported crossing into neighbouring Niger, amid rumors that it was possibly carrying Gadhafi and high-ranking officials.

“Our leader is still in Libya. He is in good health and in high spirits,” Ibrahim told the Damascus-based Al Rai television.

“Our leader will not be reached by those fractious groups,” Ibrahim said, referring to the rebel forces who now control most of Libya.

He added that Gadhafi’s son Saif al-Islam was also in Libya, moving from one place to another.

Niger confirmed that Gadhafi’s internal security chief, Mansour Daw, was allowed to enter the country, but gave no details.

http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/libya-rebels-gadhafi-surrounded-forces-ready-to-capture-or-kill-1.383075

September 7th, 2011, 10:58 am

 

Revlon said:

Defection is snowballing in Homs, Big Time!

3 officers and fourty soldiers defected in Bustan Addeewan.
That neigbourhood is surrounded by Babtudmor, AlKhaldiyeh, and Bab Aldraib, where the scurrent shelling is taking place today.

Ugarit News | أوغاريت الإخبارية
أوغاريت || حمص :: بستان الديوان, إنشقاق ثلاثة ضباط وأربعين مجند وقاموا بإعطاب عربة (BMB)
9 minutes ago

September 7th, 2011, 10:59 am

 

atassi said:

HOMS will be a free city soon.. liberation forces assembling around town

September 7th, 2011, 11:12 am

 

Revlon said:

Defected young army officers are capturing the hearts of demonstrators.
In a rare promising scene in downtown Rastan, officers address festive demonstrators.

One of them addressed the demonstrators saying: You are the heroes. We owe our defection to your courage!

These young officers are emerging as heroes and saviours.
Last night, Rastan, Homs.


الرستن -خطاب ضباط كتيبة خالد بن الوليد أمام الحشود6-9

September 7th, 2011, 11:19 am

 

Aboud said:

“3 officers and fourty soldiers defected in Bustan Addeewan.”

The numbers are greatly understated 🙂 🙂 🙂

September 7th, 2011, 11:58 am

 

Aboud said:

The army of turds, destroying private property

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVRfwJnYJQo&feature=player_embedded

Wallak etfeee 3ala hayk jaish khayen.

September 7th, 2011, 12:04 pm

 

ann said:

INTERVIEW-Syria could lash out as pressure grows-French judge

07 Sep 2011 15:37

http://www.trust.org/alertnet/news/interview-syria-could-lash-out-as-pressure-grows-french-judge

* Cornered Syria “scary”, could try to hit out at West-judge

* Threat against France far lower now than 10 yrs ago

By Nick Vinocur and Thierry Leveque

PARIS, Sept 7 (Reuters) – France’s top anti-terrorism judge says Syria could lash out at the West in response to growing pressure for an end to Bashar al-Assad’s rule.

“Syria is scary,” Marc Trevidic told Reuters in an interview as the world marks ten years since the 9/11 attacks on New York’s World Trade Centre and the Pentagon.

“A dictatorial regime under intense pressure, if it’s looking for ways to reduce international pressure on itself, can use weapons of the weak against the strong,” he said. “A regime like that — we know how they resolved certain problems in Lebanon during the 1980s.”

Trevidic cited no evidence that such an attack was being planned, saying only that Syria’s rulers had a history of resorting to unconventional means to exert influence abroad.

Syria supports Palestinian and Lebanese militant groups Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad. It says they are resistance groups confronting Israel and denies any backing for terrorism.

With a bloody crackdown on civilian protesters now in its fifth month, international pressure on the Alawite-ruled country is steadily growing more intense.

The United States and the European Union are pressing for a U.N. Security Council resolution to condemn violence perpetrated by the regime against civilians — a measure diplomats say would almost certainly run into opposition from China and Russia.

On Tuesday, France said the EU was working to turn the screws on Bashar al-Assad’s regime a notch tighter. France and Britain are leading the push for a UN Security Council Resolution that would ramp up pressure on Syrian leaders.

The build-up of sanctions, diplomatic pressure, defections and grinding civil strife could lead the harassed Syrian government to foment an attack to divert attention from its internal problems, Trevidic said.

“As soon as you have serious pressure on a country, it can be tempted to send a clear message to the people who are applying that pressure,” Trevidic said.

A 1983 bombing of U.S. and French barracks in Beirut killed 299 servicemen. Many researchers say Iran and Syria played a key role in planning and carrying out the attacks, something denied by both countries.

TERROR: THE ONLINE DATING PHASE

Ten years after al Qaeda militants killed nearly 3,000 people in their U.S. attacks, the face of global Islamist militantism has changed deeply, said Trevidic.

No longer defined by cells of professionally trained operatives, international terrorism, made the Internet its home base. Anonymous recruiters seek out young recruits with emotional arguments such as gruesome images of Muslim war victims in Iraq and elsewhere.

The nature of attacks being planned has also changed toward greater amateurism and simplicity, said Trevidic, who has led investigations into terrorism suspects in France since 2006.

“After September 11, 2001, all we did was talk about chemical or biological attacks, we imagined the absolute nightmare scenario, and none of that has happened,” he said.

“Instead we fell into the most basic form of simplicity: the suicide attack… When you use suicide bombers there is no need to spend much time training them — all it takes is a few clicks to become an amateur terrorist.”

Trevidic said the main reason for the reduction in international terrorism was a dearth of state sponsors, which had a hand in most attacks before 9/11.

With regard to France, on high alert for an attack for the past year, Trevidic said the dangers had diminished greatly since the death of al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.

Offshoots of al Qaeda, notably al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), its North African wing, maintained the ambition of striking at France but with far less appeal for young jihadists keen on joining a holy war against a visible enemy.

The presence of occupying forces in Iraq and Afghanistan was a magnet for recruits in the past decade, drawing dozens of French jihadists until the supply largely dried up from 2008.

By contrast there was no clear Western enemy in the Sahel region of Africa, where AQIM operates from a series of rapidly shifting bases, Trevidic said.

As for striking in France, the ideological appeal of AQIM’s anti-French rhetoric is nearly nonexistent when compared with arguments made by Algerian jihadists in the mid-1990s who carried out a deadly attacks on the Paris underground system.

“Is this (AQMI) a group that has enough strength to export itself? That’s far from being clear.” (Editing by Philippa Fletcher)

September 7th, 2011, 12:05 pm

 

Revlon said:

290 Dear Aboud, I am glad to hear that! By the way, Have you met or spoken to any? Would love to hear your insights!

I am excited that FOM have succedded in delivering on their earlier promises to protect civilians, and that they did it without any external assistance.

The exponential rise in the rate of defection is promising of a stronger revolutionary army and a yet more frustrated and demoralised Asad forces.

September 7th, 2011, 12:17 pm

 

Aboud said:

Revlon, I haven’t personally spoken to any, but as sure as I’m sitting here I know of them. Baba Amr is an easy place for soldiers to defect to, since part of it consists of open fields and farms.

Anytime the shabiha go ape like this, you know there’s been a sizable defection. The shabiha are useless as a fighting force.

The only thing Besho has on his side is the heavy weapons, but the people manning those weapons are ill disciplined, and have no heart for a real fight. Which is why I am all for an armed uprising. The West is grossly over estimating the security forces’ capacity and will to fight. They are a paper force, and these days half of them are hedging their bets and leaking information to the revolutionaries.

The West hasn’t really offered any effective alternatives. I mean, oil sanctions that won’t kick in until November? They call that sanctions? The West are so toothless and feeble, they can’t even get 3rd rate powers like India, South Africa and Brazil to vote with them.

September 7th, 2011, 12:26 pm

 

5 dancing shlomos said:

Target Syria
http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_63710.shtml

The U.S.-sponsored armed insurrection in Syria is a carbon copy of the U.S.-sponsored armed insurrection in Libya. It is designed to remove a nationalist government and replaced it with a puppet regime subservient to U.S.-Israel dictates, willing to serve U.S.-Israel Zionist interests. The imposition of sanctions by the U.S. and the European Union (EU) against Syria is part of a concerted propaganda campaign to demonise President Bashar al-Assad and his government.

With the mainstream capitalist media in full swing distorting facts on the ground and demonising the Syrian Government, the prelude to war on Syria has already begun. In fact, none of the war crimes against Libya by U.S.-NATO army would have been possible without the one that preceded them; “crimes against peace”, fabricated and disseminated by propaganda organs like the BBC, Al-Jazeera, CNN and racist journalists and propagandists.

Only fools buy into Western propaganda of “concern” for the human rights

September 7th, 2011, 12:34 pm

 

5 dancing shlomos said:

The destabilisation campaign against Syria has been in the making for several years. The Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act of 2003 was part of campaign to destabilize Syria and demonize President al-Assad. In 2005, the U.S. and its allies accused the Syrian Government of the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

“[i]n late 2005, Richard Perle, at the time described as the Prince of Darkness, attended a meeting at the home of Farid Ghadry, the head of the Syrian Reform Party. Ghadry had met with Dick Cheney to strategize about regime change in Syria. He told the Wall Street Journal that Perle’s pal Ahmad Chalabi ‘paved the way in Iraq for what we want to do in Syria’”.

The aim is to topple the current Syrian Government and replace it with a pro-U.S. and pro-Israel dictatorship.

September 7th, 2011, 12:41 pm

 

ann said:

the head of the Arab League in Damascus Saturday

The secretary general of the Arab League, Nabil al-Arabi, will visit Syria on Saturday to submit a proposal to resolve the crisis in the country, after an initial postponement of the visit , said a senior official of the organization.

* “Following a telephone conversation between (M. Arabi) and the Syrian Minister of Foreign Affairs Walid Muallem and a meeting with the representative of Syria to the Arab League, it was decided that the Secretary-General visits Syria on Saturday,” told reporters the deputy head of the organization, Ahmad Ben Helli.

September 7th, 2011, 12:49 pm

 

daisie said:

Dear Ann

Thank you for posting these articles. Many of them are not easily found on internet as they are outside the mainstream, yet they offer different and enriching perspectives on the regional situation affecting Syria directly or indirectly.

September 8th, 2011, 3:16 pm

 

Akbar Palace said:

SANAtizing the NewZ

With the mainstream capitalist media in full swing distorting facts on the ground and demonising the Syrian Government…

5 Dancing Ahmads,

Can you post some links from the non-mainstream capitalist media supporting your claims? What “facts on the ground” have been “distorted”? The only news source allowed to operate in Syria is SANA.

September 8th, 2011, 3:29 pm

 

syrialover said:

#298 It’s bad enough that Ann keeps idiotically swamping the comments section with endless text as well as the links (why post both?).

But it looks like she has now created an additional identity to praise herself for doing so!

September 9th, 2011, 10:19 am

 

Six mois de contestation en Syrie. Et après ? | Groupe de soutien à la révolte du peuple syrien said:

[…] à une militarisation de la contestation pour des raisons que Joshua Landis énumère sur son blog Syria Comment. Et d’autre part, une intervention étrangère est, pour le moment, totalement exclue de la […]

November 27th, 2011, 2:42 pm

 

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