“Stay Out of Syria,” by Joshua Landis in Foreign Policy

Stay Out of Syria
Foreign intervention to topple Bashar al-Assad’s bloody regime risks a fiasco on par with Iraq and Afghanistan.
BY JOSHUA LANDIS | JUNE 5, 2012 | Foreign Policy

Let’s be clear: Washington is pursuing regime change by civil war in Syria. The United States, Europe, and the Gulf states want regime change, so they are starving the regime in Damascus and feeding the opposition. They have sanctioned Syria to a fare-thee-well and are busy shoveling money and helping arms supplied by the Gulf get to the rebels. This will change the balance of power in favor of the revolution. It is also the most the United States can and should do.

President Barack Obama does not want to intervene directly in Syria for obvious reasons, and he is right to be cautious. The United States has failed at nation-building twice before in the Middle East. The Libyan example of limited intervention by using air power alone could suck the United States into a protracted and open-ended engagement. One cannot compare Libya to Syria. The former is a relatively small, homogeneous, and wealthy society. Syria has a population four times larger, which is poor and wracked by an increasingly violent civil war across religious lines. Moreover, the chance that the United States can end the killing in Syria by airpower alone is small.

The argument that the United States could have avoided radicalization and civil war in Iraq by toppling Saddam Hussein in 1991 is unconvincing. Similar arguments are now being offered to talk Americans into jumping into Syria. Iraq was not a mature nation-state and was likely to fall apart. The fact that it imploded into civil war when the United States roto-rootered Saddam’s regime should have been expected.

U.S. intervention in Syria will likely lead to something similar: civil war and radicalization. Syrians have never agreed on basic questions of identity and policy, and it is unlikely that they will decide these issues peacefully today.

With America’s economy in the dumps, its military badly bruised, its reputation among Muslims in tatters, and its people fatigued by foreign wars, this is no time to intervene in Syria. Washington has no staying power if things go wrong. It wants regime-change on the cheap — to bomb and withdraw. And if things go wrong, will we leave the Syrians in the lurch or get sucked into another complicated quagmire? The administration can ill afford to leave a failed state behind in Syria or to have it unfurl into civil war.

Even more pressing will be the need for post-conflict reconstruction. Syria is a nation the size of Iraq whose population has outstripped its water and economic resources. Unlike Iraq, it has insufficient sources of revenue to quickly rebuild its infrastructure. What if there is massive looting and chaos? Syria produces little the world wants to buy. It hardly produces enough electricity for three hours of power a day. The school system is in a shambles. Do Americans want to pay for putting Syria back together? More to the point, should they let Washington start what it would not finish?

If anyone tells you they are going to build democracy in Syria, don’t buy it. Democracy is unlikely to succeed there anytime soon. The two social indicators that predict the success of democratization with any accuracy are median population age and per capita gross domestic product. According to a recent study, autocracies with a median population age of over 30 years old are most likely to transition to liberal democracies — Syria has a median age of 21. This is the same as Iraq’s and just slightly older than Gaza’s and Yemen’s. Because of its poverty and youth, political scientists give it small chances of becoming democratic and stable any time soon. Beware of drinking the democratization Kool-Aid.

Anyone who believes that Syria will avoid the excesses of Iraq — where the military, government ministries, and Baath Party were dissolved and criminalized — is dreaming. Syrian government institutions and the security forces will fall apart once the revolution prevails. They are overwhelmingly staffed by Baathists, Alawites, and other minorities, recruited for loyalty to President Bashar al-Assad — no revolutionary government will keep them on. Their dismissal will provide fodder for a counterinsurgency, promoting greater chaos across the country.

Syria’s new rulers will also face a daunting set of challenges upon taking power. They will be obliged to employ the hundreds of thousands of jobless Syrians who have sacrificed for the revolution, lost family, and struggled in the face of tyranny.

If the United States becomes militarily involved — destroying the presidential palace in Damascus and military installations — it will own Syria. Will it discipline the dozens of militias that have sprung up to represent the revolutionary forces? If the death toll rises after the Assad regime is taken out, will the United States continue to dedicate itself to stopping the killing?

Syrian opposition figures have estimated that running the government for the first six months after the fall of Assad will cost $12 billion, and have made it clear that they will ask international donors for financial support. This is chicken feed. Anyone who knows anything about Syria knows that it will take a lot more than $12 billion to stabilize and rebuild the country. The United States currently spends $12 billion dollars every three months in Afghanistan. In 2010, the United States was spending $6.7 billion in Afghanistan every month, as well as $5.5 billion in Iraq. Few Americans believe this money was well spent. It is rash to expect Syria to cost less.

If the United States has learned anything, it is that it cannot sort out issues of power-sharing and national identity for Middle Eastern countries. The road to national unity does not go through Washington. In the end, Syrians must find their own way and choose their own national leaders. Ahmad Chalabi and Hamid Karzai turned out to be bad choices for Iraq and Afghanistan, respectively.

There is no indication that the United States could do a better job of picking winners in Syria. Burhan Ghalioun, the original leader of the Syrian National Council (SNC), seemed to have all the qualities of a future Syrian president, but his own party members attacked him for treason within months of confirming him as leader. He was forced to resign on May 17, setting the stage for a showdown between the powerful Muslim Brotherhood and its political rivals over who will be the SNC’s new leader. Militias, the names of which we don’t even know and with ideologies that could turn out to be closer to Osama bin Laden’s than George Washington’s, are competing on the ground for cash and Kalashnikovs.

Syrians are divided because they have no tradition of unity and the Baathists have destroyed politics for a half-century. Nothing the United States can do will erase that legacy of political underdevelopment.

It seems heartless to stand by and do so little as massacres, such as the atrocity carried out at Houla, continue. More than 13,000 Syrians have been killed in the last 14 months of revolution. But there is no reason to believe U.S. intervention can staunch the violence. American troops killed over 10,000 Iraqis in the first month of invasion in 2003. A further 100,000 Iraqis were killed by the time they left — and even now, Iraq remains in turmoil and a new dictatorship seems to be taking shape. Car bombs are a regular occurrence in Baghdad, and the government cleaves to Iran rather than the United States.

The cost in Iraq was high. The chances that the United States would end the killing by destroying Syria’s Baathist regime is not good.

In all likelihood, the Syrian revolution will be less bloody if Syrians carry it out for themselves. A new generation of national leaders will emerge from the struggle. They will not emerge with any legitimacy if America hands them Syria on a golden platter. How will they claim that they won the struggle for dignity, freedom, and democracy? America cannot give these things. Syrians must take them.

The United States can play a role with aid, arms, and intelligence — but it cannot and should not try to decide Syria’s future and determine the victors of this conflict. If Syrians want to own Syria in the future, they must take charge of their revolution and figure out how to win it. It is better for Syria, and it is better for America.

Why US Intervention in Syria Could Spell Deep Trouble

By Joyce Hackel ⋅ June 6, 2012 ⋅ PRI-BBC Radio

Joshua Landis, director of the Middle Eastern Studies program at the University of Oklahoma, tells host Marco Werman that more assertive US intervention in Syria is unlikely to quell the violence there.

“About 13,000 Syrians have been killed in the last 14 months, according to UN statistics. And in invading Iraq, a country the same size and the same population, we killed that many in one month,” he says. “If this is about saving lives, we have to think about what is likely to happen if we destroy this regime.”

Landis has limited expectations for a new plan former UN secretary general Kofi Annan is expected to present to the Security Council this week. The new “road map” would reportedly chart a plan for political transition that would be negotiated through a “contact group” — including Russia and Iran.

“The Americans are trying to float this idea now that the Russians will abandon [Syria], but I’m not sure they’re ready to do that, which means Syria would be in for a much longer civil war,” Landis says.

Landis is steeped in all things Syrian as a scholar, and because he is married to a Syrian. His wife is of the same minority group as President Bashar al-Assad. Landis says Assad’s Alawite supporters are likely to remain loyal.

“There are many cousins who go on Facebook, 14 or 15 [year-olds], in Syria and they’re wearing t-shirts that say: ‘Assad Special Forces.’ And they’re carrying guns on their Facebook page and they’re totally mobilized for this fight,” says Landis. “That’s what’s scary.”

Comments (348)

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251. Tara said:

The UN monitors were allowed access to al-Qubair today, 2days after the massacre.  Enough time for the regime to whitewash the evidence.  What is the regime excuse of not allowing them then?  Concerns in regard to their safety? What happened to the elusive “armed gangs” threatening the safety of the observers?  They suddenly disappeared via a miracle?  Why is the regime no longer concerned about their safety?  It is clear that the safety concern is a cover up to give the regime enough time to destroy the evidence.     


UN monitors on Friday entered for the first time the Syrian village where up to 78 people were reportedly killed in cold blood on Wednesday, the latest in a series of atrocities that have underlined the gravity of the escalating crisis.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:20 pm


252. jad said:

The terrorists armed groups are attacking the Syrian Army and residential neighbourhoods every night for the last two months, so the army retaliate when possible, they already destroyed the life in all Syrian cities, tonight is a bit more intense than usual, because the mercenaries got some orders to do it and if they got killed, the cries ‘massacre’ will be the only word we hear as if those terrorists have the permission to kill people and nobody should touch them…because they are ‘holy’…

#246, Why to hate you or to hate anybody else, I have no reason and I never had any hatred toward anybody, I hate .hate’ itself, because it’s the core of all kind of evil.
Hatred is a commitment and we can see that by some and we have couple of them on SC already.
I was merely explaining to everybody through your comment, what’s going on for the last two months, there was nothing about ‘feelings’ in my comment at all.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:32 pm


253. Tara said:

Damascus, welcome home girlfriend. It is high time…

Dear SOD,

وقل لن يصيبنا إلّا ماكتب الله لنا . Have no fear. I too have family in Damascus.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:32 pm


254. SANDRO LOEWE said:

Some info about what´s happening in Damascus tonight.


Assad take your flight to Moscow as the traitor you are.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:33 pm


255. SANDRO LOEWE said:

If hits in Damascus intensify in time and violence we can still dream of Assad Jahsh Wahsh II leaving power.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:36 pm


256. Son of Damascus said:


كل شيء بقدر الله و امكانه، الله يحفظ الشعب و يخلصنا من هل سفاح

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June 8th, 2012, 8:47 pm


257. zoo said:

Notice the white shoes…are they Shabbiha disguised in FSA or the other way around?
Syria rebels preparing for war
Fighters lose faith in peace plan and are using the time to rearm for a bigger conflict

“The final battle is going to be in Damascus, just like it was in Tripoli,” in Libya, Jumaa said.

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June 8th, 2012, 8:57 pm


258. Tara said:

Arab League’s letter to Security Council on Syria: Act under Chapter 7
7 June 2012 
النص الرسمي لقرار المجلس الوزاري العربي بدعوة مجلس الأمن الى التصرف بموجب الفصل السابع لحماية المدنيين  أنقر هنا.

     I have the honour to transmit herewith resolution No. 7507, dated 2 June 2012, adopted by the Council of the League of Arab States at the ministerial level, concerning developments in the situation in Syria. The resolution calls upon the Security Council to take forthwith all the necessary measures to protect Syrian civilians and impose a complete cessation of all acts of violence and crimes committed against the Syrian people. The international observers in Syria must be granted all the powers necessary to enable them to undertake the mandate that has been delegated to them, and the plan of the Joint Special Envoy of the United Nations and the League of Arab States must be implemented immediately and in full, within a specific time frame.
I hope that you will take the action that you deem to be appropriate with regard to the circulation to Security Council member States of the resolution which is annexed hereto, and that it may be considered an official document of the Security Council.
Accept, Sir, the assurances of my highest consideration.

(Signed) Nabil Elaraby
Secretary General

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June 8th, 2012, 9:02 pm


259. zoo said:

Heavy fighting reported in Damascus
Zoi Constantine
Jun 9, 2012

About 600,000 people took part in marches in the province of Hama yesterday, said a Syrian opposition activist in Turkey.

“There were protests all over the province,” Omar Shawaf said, adding that Syrian security forces bombarded parts of Latakia after protests there.

“Half of Latakia is under fire. Protests are growing by the day.”

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June 8th, 2012, 9:03 pm


260. Tara said:

Ok. Come on now. I wear a white sneaker to the gym everyday.

I think I was an FSA fighter reincarnated into Tara.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:04 pm


261. bronco said:

#258 Tara

It’s a copy of the Libyan resolution calling for foreign intervention.
No western country seems ready for a military adventure in Syria unless they decide to use drones and the Turkish army to give a hand to the FSA. It will take time, in the mean time revegenful acts will proliferate.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:10 pm


262. zoo said:

#260 Tara

It may well be.. but do you believe in reincarnation now?

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June 8th, 2012, 9:12 pm


263. zoo said:

Al Mayadeen Tv: New Kid on the Block

By: Bassem Alhakim
Published Monday, June 4, 2012

The new satellite news channel, launching June 11, is promising to be an independent and unbiased commentator.

The channel is intent on “broadcasting the most precise information possible, the news we receive and what our cameras prove,” says the chairperson of the board of directors and director of programs, Ghassan Ben Jeddo. Ben Jeddo stresses the channel’s objective and unbiased approach.

Concerning the station’s launch next Friday,
Ben Jeddo says: “I wanted it to be in one of the Palestinian refugee camps since Jerusalem will be our point of reference and our central cause, but the guys convinced me of the need to hold the press conference in a closed room and so we decided to have it at the Bristol Hotel.”

The Tunisian journalist distances himself from the sharp division in Arab politics “which is no longer a legitimate political division as it is threatening the region and its stability.”

He alludes that that he will not fall in the “trap” that Al Jazeera fell into by abandoning professional standards, which is what led him to resign from the station over a year ago.
The channel will include prominent Lebanese journalists such as Kulaib, Zahi Wehbe, Lina Zahreddine, Lana Mudawwar, Muhammad Alloush, Ahmad Abu Ali and Dina Zarkat. In addition to two Syrian journalists, Ramia Ibrahim and Futoun Abbasi, Palestinian Kamal Khalaf and Ahmad Sobh, and Yemeni Mona Safwan.
freedom at the channel will be unparalleled anywhere else and we have no taboos except ethical standards

The head of the reporters division, Ali Hashem, says “the channel will have offices in Arab and world capitals.” There are offices in Beirut, Washington, New York, London and Moscow.

The channel will also have a regional office in Tunisia, equipped to broadcast news and other programs, another in Cairo with three reporters and a big studio, and a third in Tehran.


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June 8th, 2012, 9:22 pm


264. Tara said:


Well, the literal interpretation of the 72 virgins promised to men only, does not suite me. I am looking for an interpretation that I like.

Forgive me God.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:23 pm


265. zoo said:

#264 Tara

Easy, reincarnate in a man…

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June 8th, 2012, 9:28 pm


266. Son of Damascus said:


Why to hate me or anyone else? I don’t know that is a question you need to ask yourself not me. Twice you attacked me when I never alluded to you at all.

You tell me to shove a slipper in my mouth then instead of showing a little bit of concern over my post (or even not saying anything at all) you chose to write that I don’t live in reality or the real world.

Thats fine, I just won’t share or even feel those same sentiments with you, I don’t care to.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:35 pm


267. Tara said:


Very clever! And funny..

That is not what I meant. I think it is rather a punishment. 72 is a burden. There is only one person that your heart can ache for… but what do I know.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:39 pm


268. zoo said:

Syrian workers are leaving Lebanon in masses..

Syrian workers terrorized
However, always terrified, the Syrian workers continue to flee Lebanon, the kidnapping of Shiite pilgrims in the Aleppo region mid-May increasingly affectring their situation. Last weekend, the exodus of thousands of Syrian workers to their countries after war had begun due to the intimidation they suffered in the southern suburbs and Bekaa. Now it is in southern Lebanon that they are being targeted: in Hula (a village in South of Lebanon), handwritten leaflets were distributed, signed by “free men of Hula.” They threaten the Syrian workers who “dare” stay in the village. “This time, the leaflets are written in ink, the next time they will be with your blood”, highlight the text, calling on workers to leave the town within 24 hours.


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June 8th, 2012, 9:48 pm


269. zoo said:

267. Tara

Would you object to 72 non virgin muscled men waiting for you?

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June 8th, 2012, 9:52 pm


270. Tara said:


The Syrian worker are threatened by whom exactly? HA?

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June 8th, 2012, 9:55 pm


271. omen said:

It is strange
Joshua is saying US is helping the opposition, suggesting that US is arming the FSA, while the FSA has denied receiving specific weapons from USA, and infact they have very simple weapons only, the most they have is simple guns and RPG, I was told that their weapons are inferior to Assad army weapons.they said SNC got the money from KSA but trickle got to the FSA. Who should we believe?The facts on ground suggest the FSA is not getting enough help from outside. USA is talking,only talking,and it is for purpose of winning political campaign only. 8:00 am


i, too, suspect a lot of washington rhetoric is bs. a reporter on cnn said the rebels he saw in one town were ill equipped. they didn’t even have communication equipment the u.s. promised. but that case might that might not be representative. other brigades in other areas sound like they are better equipped, as these clashes in latakia and damascus being reported on this thread suggests. even if the borders have been tightened, making arms traffic difficult, the rebels are managing to obtain weapons from regime depots through the backdoor. the fsa aren’t waiting around for foreign help and are managing to ratchet up their effectiveness.

watch a tank go boom!

there are countless videos like this.
how many tanks does the regime have?
at this rate, they’re going to run out soon.

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June 8th, 2012, 9:55 pm


272. Tara said:


That is the whole premise in the Turkish soap opera and it’s soft power in the Arab world. The theme has always been 2 and sometimes 3 very handsome men dying for this one woman and she may or may not like any. It is never the other way around.

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June 8th, 2012, 10:03 pm


273. omen said:

i wonder if this recent tactic, of sending in shabiha to finish off the killing, is because the regime realizes they can’t rely on shelling alone because inventory is starting to run low. or they realize they’re going to have to ration their output or risk running out.

the regime shelling hour after hour, as been reported, you’re going to deplete your inventory.

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June 8th, 2012, 10:13 pm


274. Jad said:

-When you post a picture of a slipper directed at me, you will get it back, it’s just fair.
-I already wrote you a reply to all your attacks last time but your friend WSS didn’t show it.
-Again, I was merley telling you and others that this fsa terrorist attackes are happening every night what’s wrong or insensitive in that
At the moment I, too, not interested in sharing any feeling with you, it’s mutual, don’t worry.

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June 8th, 2012, 10:51 pm


275. zoo said:

272. Tara

That’s in the Middle east. In the West, it’s the other way around.

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June 8th, 2012, 10:58 pm


276. zoo said:

Tara #270

As the Lebanese Shias kidnapped by the FSA have yet not been released and no one know their fate, I guess the Lebanese Shias as a whole are angry and are retaliating by kicking out the Syrians who are supportive of the FSA. I am sure many neutral poor Syrian workers are also paying the price.

I also read that in Tripoli, the Sunni Lebanese, first welcoming, are becoming fed up with the anti-regime Syrians activists who are involved in lucrative arms smuggling and create tensions in their city..
Overall it seems that anti-regime Syrians are not welcomed in Lebanon anymore.

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June 8th, 2012, 11:09 pm


277. Observer said:

Some really do not get it.

The websites I mentioned are from pro regime sites and from Russian sites to show that you can tell by reading information that
1. Russia may be in dilemma about what to do or

2. Russia does not give a hoot what happens to Syria and Syrians as long as it maintains a foothold in the ME.

3. Russia want to have a bargaining chip by appearing to negotiate the containment of the crisis in Syria into an implosion rather than an explosion.

4. There is no dialogue with a regime that failed in ushering in any reforms and is using daily massive power to crush a legitimate revolution.

5. If the regime prevails for a while it will be short lived and at such a price that for all practical purposes it will be severely weakened and I doubt very much that it will prevail

6. Once it falls it is very likely that revenge killings may happen and therefore to pre empt further bloodshed and reprisals a truth and reconciliation commission is in need of being ready to act immediately.

7. The discourse that there are armed terrorist groups that are operating daily and that the armed forces are being forced to respond in kind is the ultimate in cruelty and the ultimate insult to the intelligence of man and to the dignity of humanity.

8. The regime cannot protect Syrians if one were to believe the narrative and therefore the logical conclusion is that it needs help and needs more observers and more monitors to check on the breakdown of the ceasefire. I challenge every regime apologist on this post to tell us why more observers and more monitors and more independent media outlets are not allowed in and why humanitarian aid is not allowed into the country and why the Red Crescent and the Red Cross are not allowed to operate in the stricken areas.

9. Every massacre that is reported and according to the shameful Sana and regime propagandists is never followed by a visit from the interior minister or the Red Crescent or the Red Cross or even UN team

10. Explain to us where did these massive terrorist groups come from? How come they operate freely? Where do they get their support? Who funds them? How come they are in Deir and Deraa and Duman and Homs and Rastan and Latakia and Idlib and Bab Alhwa and Aleppo and Hama and Kamshli? How is it possible that they escaped the vigilant work of the 17 security services that operate freely and under the state of emergency and under the old constitution that exempted them from prosecution while “performing their duties”.

11. Even those regime apologists and supporters are at worst silent or at best now recognizing the brutality of the regime. Atwan in his Op-Ed clearly puts the blame on the regime and its militias in the brutality of the massacres.

12. The shrill of some on this blog is truly telling of the desperation of the regime in trying to justify the abhorrent and the unjustifiable.

“Dudes” and” Keepers” and “Adoring fans” and “Sanctimonious Apologists” at least read what the other side is saying. My reading of the pro regime sites tells me that the game is UP. Get it?


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June 8th, 2012, 11:09 pm


278. irritated said:

#273 Omen

“i wonder if this recent tactic, of sending in shabiha to finish off the killing, is because the regime realizes they can’t rely on shelling alone because inventory is starting to run low.”

Very good imagination… The reality is much simpler.

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June 8th, 2012, 11:11 pm


279. irritated said:

Do you need a drawing? There has been hundred of articles giving you exhaustive explanations. Just go back in SC and read the hated ‘cut and paste’ , that’s where you can find answers.
Just one hint: All the cities and towns you mentioned are strangely close to the borders. Draw your own conclusions.

“10. Explain to us where did these massive terrorist groups come from? How come they operate freely? Where do they get their support? Who funds them? How come they are in Deir and Deraa and Duman and Homs and Rastan and Latakia and Idlib and Bab Alhwa and Aleppo and Hama and Kamshli? How is it possible that they escaped the vigilant work of the 17 security services that operate freely and under the state of emergency and under the old constitution that exempted them from prosecution while “performing their duties”.

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June 8th, 2012, 11:17 pm


280. Jad said:

Proffesional observers don’t read cut&past news or analyses at all, they are way way way above that ‘human’ activities, they only read their own writings.
BTW, have you ever read for any Syrian celebrating the destruction of Syria other than Ajami and his likes, the neo-con and the zionests?
I haven’t until recently…unbelievable!

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June 8th, 2012, 11:30 pm


281. Son of Damascus said:

“-When you post a picture of a slipper directed at me, you will get it back, it’s just fair.”

Directed at you? Why are you the newscaster that got hit in the face with the slipper? If so I will ask the Moderator to take it down immediately, I linked the picture because it was humours and since the newscaster was hit in Aleppo and Halabi being well Halabi, and me being shami. The fact that you were insulted by it is your problem not mine, you are the one seeing insults that are not there, I did not mention you or even allude to you, I just tried to put a smile on a commentators mouth that was exposed to your usual tirades.

“-I already wrote you a reply to all your attacks last time but your friend WSS didn’t show it.”

Sorry to break it to you, you have a history of attacking and bullying other commentators, if WSS chose to place your comments in the trash bin I am sure he had his reasons to do so, and his friendship or lack thereof with me or anyone else had nothing to do with it. You seem to think its OK to sully anyone that does not agree with you, I won’t stoop to that level, it is my personal choice. I would suggest for you to take a look at my posts and compare them to yours, to really understand what “usual attacks” really mean.

“Again, I was merley telling you and others that this fsa terrorist attackes are happening every night what’s wrong or insensitive in that
At the moment I, too, not interested in sharing any feeling with you, it’s mutual, don’t worry.”

You can tell me and others your “facts” all you like, but when you INSULT ME along the way I won’t sit here and exchange empty pleasantries with you, just keep that in mind. BTW calling someone not in touch with reality or not living in the real world is pretty much calling someone irrational, crazy, illogical and other similar adjectives, which would constitute to being an insult, and a personal attack…

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June 8th, 2012, 11:40 pm


282. majedkhaldoun said:

Syrian army has 1700 tank

The rebels they are gentle reasonable,their virtues are altruism and humanity, they believe in their fight for freedom and dignity, a friend is more dear to them than their own family,they are generous, there where you will understand the meaning of the word in Arabic, Nakhwa, very little to sleep, and very little to eat.
they call each other by “abu flan’you will forget their real name
I truely admire them

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June 8th, 2012, 11:49 pm


283. omen said:

278. IRRITATED said: The reality is much simpler.

how does that go?

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June 8th, 2012, 11:52 pm


284. omen said:

weapons: a handy guide on regime hardware.

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June 9th, 2012, 12:08 am


285. Jad said:

You defiantly have a problem, go have someone else to hassle, I’m not interested with your endless comments and accusations.
I liked the logic that anybody can attack me and I should let it go, why? do you think I care about the feelings of those who attack me at all? I don’t.
I wrote it million times already, if you or anybody else come close to me in an attack you will hear something back with or without the moderator, live with it all of you.

Before I leave you with the usual rant you will come back with, Just a reminder to what you wrote about my comment to Halabi:

لك خيو أش بدك فيو؟!!
هيك وسخت شحاطتك فيو!!!
140. SON OF DAMASCUS said:


Eh Walla Meskeen inta living in a bubble and all, maybe a message from Midan can lift your poor meskeen spirit up:


8  16

Yet I’m the bully who is attacking people out of the blue..sure!!
And please don’t ask the ‘fair’ moderator to delete your comment, it’s like deleting history to justif your words against others and he shouldn’t delete any comment that is already written.

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June 9th, 2012, 12:17 am


286. majedkhaldoun said:

What Jad said, that gunfire is heared daily for the last two months is not true, what happened in Damascus today is much more, it lasted more than an hour, and heavy gun battle was going on , and it was in several places, I bet the regime will not sleep well,and we will know more of what happened tomorrow,
The picture from AlBAb, 50 KM east of Aleppo,was a huge demonstration,over 100,000.

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June 9th, 2012, 12:17 am


287. Jad said:

You are correct that tonight was more than usual but these fights and gun fires and bombing happened every night in Damascus and Aleppo for the last two months, go ask!

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June 9th, 2012, 12:27 am


288. Juergen said:


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June 9th, 2012, 12:53 am


289. Juergen said:

you should know by now my stand against salafi/wahabi thinking. I posted this cartoon to mock about their influence on mainstream islam. If that is an inspiration for you to analyse that I am mocking about the ME culture, I may suggest that you seem to be a guy who hides for laughing.


I always thought that you live in Germany. I think when you wrote that many see Westerwelle as an incompetent minsiter, its partly true, but one has to give credit to him that he has improved his skills and work attitude. Sure the German government supported and used the Assad regime, so did the international community, they all got fooled by this eyedoctors smile and like Sarko by his wife. ( a bad guy cant have such a beaty as his wife) I dont know any western government ( except Israel) which boycotted the regime prior to the revolution.

Here is a funny video which made my morning. Two masked guys demolished an Assad statue in midday in Bagdad street in Damascus and threw it afterwards in the garbage. I assume in the near future there will be large dumping grounds filled with Assad pictures and statues from allover Syria. I would love to make an exhibition of the worst Assad pictures, in my travels I have came across some real ugly artworks, but as they say you cant dress a pig and look like a swan…


Kafranbel published this photo yesterday:


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June 9th, 2012, 1:03 am


290. Juergen said:

An allusion to Assad’s last speech in which he claimed that any Syrian demonstrators gets 2000 Syrian liras for participating in a demonstration from abroad. And here is the reward, depending on when the demonstration takes place: Evening demo: 2000 Syrian lira Demo on Friday: 4000 Syrian lira Demo Tomorrow: 3000 Syrian lira Armed demonstration: 5000 lira. Banner of Amuda.


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June 9th, 2012, 1:25 am


291. Jad said:

Thank god they didn’t elect George Sabra and elected another la2lou2 instead:
3bd Albase6 Sieda the new face of the MBs SNC, which means that the gulf won over EU in taking over the council, we are heading to war, brace yourselves your dreams to destroy Syria will come true in couple weeks:

ذكرت “المستقبل” ان “المكتب التنفيذي لـ”المجلس الوطني السوري” خلص في اجتماعه في احد فنادق اسطنبول، الى التوافق على انتخاب عبد الباسط سيدا رئيساً له خلفاً لبرهان غليون، على ان تلتئم الأمانة العامة للمجلس اليوم لاعلان ذلك والانطلاق منه الى خطوات تنفيذية عدة، وصولاً الى وضع برنامج عمل موحد لسوريا المستقبل”.
وافادت مصادر المجتمعين “للمستقبل” ان “الاجتماع الذي عقد امس في حضور كل أعضاء المجلس الوطني، شهد توافقاً عاماً ومن دون اي تحفظات على انتخاب الناشط الكردي سيدا رئيساً للمجلس”، مشيرة الى انه “شخصية سياسية وأكاديمية فكرية مرموقة، ويملك خبرة واسعة واستثنائية في العمل السياسي والنضالي ويمثل المكون الكردي الذي هو جزء أساسي من مكونات المجتمع السوري”.
وشددت على ان “التوافق على سيدا هو ايضا ترجمة للقاعدة التي حكمت عمل المجلس منذ تأسيسه والقائلة بالتناوب على رئاسته، وما حصل وسيتأكد وسيعلن اليوم خطوة في ذلك الاتجاه”، علماً ان “الخطوة التالية ستكون من خلال بدء العمل لضم كل مكونات “الثورة الوطنية السورية” في اطار المعارضة الموحدة”.


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June 9th, 2012, 1:34 am


292. Alan said:

we are Muslims more suitable for trial in this detail! you representative of the European outlook! and we look for in your comments that valuable instead of this mockery!

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June 9th, 2012, 1:57 am


294. Alan said:

Iran: Syrian intervention ‘will be defeated’
“A conflict in Syria will engulf the region and its main victims will be the people of Syria themselves,” he also noted. “The Zionist regime and the interests of the enemies of Syria are all within range of the resistance fire.”
“The defeat of the enemy at this stage will be a big event and, God willing, we will witness that,” Jazaeri added.
Mashragh earlier reported that Iran’s armed forces had formed a joint war room with officers from “the resistance,” which includes Iran, Syria and Hezbollah, which controls parts of Lebanon.
Brigadier General Mohammed Reza Naqdi, the head of Iran’s Basij militia who was sanctioned by the US Treasury Department for alleged human rights abuses, said Tehran would not tolerate foreign interference to topple President Bashar al-Assad. He alleged that the United States was considering taking action in Syria to protect Israel.

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June 9th, 2012, 2:16 am


295. Juergen said:

I dont know if you all have seen this video of an saudi women get harassed by the obnoxious religious police (with the license never to smile) for her nail manicure. Very funny. The saudi authorities have acknowledged that this officer was going too far.

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June 9th, 2012, 2:32 am


296. Alan said:

IDF Preparing for Conflict in Lebanon
By: Solomon Burke
Published: June 6th, 2012
Col. Shmulik Olensky, commander of the “Barak” armored brigade on Israel’s northern front, said that the Israel Defense Force is “dealing with extensive preparations for fighting in Lebanon.”

Speaking at a conference earlier in the week about the First Lebanon War, Olensky said that the next “Lebanon war is going to be different, different from the first and second…There are no longer Christian villages in the south, all have become Hizbollah military compounds, found at every level and in every village. At the entry areas, there will be observation officers and anti-tank missiles.

“A flare-up in Lebanon can occur at any time,” Col. Olensky said. “Therefore we are preparing as much as possible, with unique plans, improved models, and joint training.”

The conference was held in the shadow of increasing concerns that the crisis in Syria will spill over into its notoriously-sectarian neighbor Lebanon. Already, a recent intra-Muslim clash in Tripoli left two Sunni clergymen dead. Adding to the volatility are recent threats by high-level Iranian officials that Western military intervention in Syria will result in an attack on Israel. Taken together, there is substantial concern that Hizbollah will be called on to do Iran’s bidding and attack Israel…/../..

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June 9th, 2012, 2:40 am


297. Syrialover said:


I completely agree with you. And you’ve apparently hit a sore point that gave Irritated a surge of irritation.

And for those who keep telling us terrorists were either controlling or freely running in and out of the massacre locations, I say, sorry, I can’t follow what you’re saying. I’m too busy looking at the satellite images proving the Syrian army was encircling those areas, and reading survivor and witness accounts from non-controlled sources.

It will be telling when the dust has settled in those areas to see who has grabbed whose land.

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June 9th, 2012, 2:43 am


298. Syrialover said:

Juergen #295, thanks that video of the Saudi lady cheered me up.

I know a few feisty Syrian ladies who could be her sisters.

I like the bit where she dismissively tells the religions police donkeys that she’s just sent a film of them in action to twitter and facebook.

She makes them look so out of their depth and ridiculous.

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June 9th, 2012, 2:57 am


299. Juergen said:


arabellion may come to the saudis through lipsticks and manicured fingernails…

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June 9th, 2012, 3:08 am


300. Alan said:

“إسرائيل” تجري تدريبات استعداداً لدخول “الوحل اللبناني”
يجري جيش العدو الصهيوني تدريبات موسعة للواء “جفعاتي” في مناورات تحاكي شن هجوم بريّ على الأراضي اللبنانية، حسبما ذكرت صحيفة “هآرتس” الصهيونية.

وقالت الصحيفة إن التدريبات أُجريت في معسكر “الكيام” الواقع وسط الأراضي المحتلة، وتضمنت التعامل مع تضاريس لأراضٍ تشبه إلى حد كبير قرى جنوب لبنان. كما جرى إعداد خنادق ومخابئ أرضية مشابهة لما يُعده حزب الله بحسب فرضيات العدو الصهيوني. وتم نشر قوات من القناصة ووحدات الصواريخ وكأنها معدة لاستهداف الكيان، فيما تقدمت وحدات لواء “جفعاتي” بحسب سيناريو يفترض وجود قرار من قيادة جيش العدو بالتحرك البري باتجاه الجنوب اللبناني وتخطي الحدود.

وتابعت هآرتس أن القوات المشاركة تقدمت إلى معكسر جرى تجهيزه وفقاً للتصور الموجود لدى الجيش الصهيوني عن تجهيزات حزب الله وكيفية انتشار عناصره في القرى الجنوبية.

وتهدف هذه التدريبات إلى الإبقاء على وحدات الجيش على أهبة الاستعداد للحرب القادمة، وخلق حالة معنوية تمكن الجنود الصهاينة من خوض المعارك.

هذا ويقر بعض قادة لواء “جعفاتي” بأن الواقع قد يكون مختلفا عما يجري من إعداد وتدريب تماماً كما حدث في حرب تموز 2006. وتنقل الصحيفة الصهيونية عن عدد من الضباط بأن الحرب القادمة مع لبنان ستكون مختلفة عن سابقاتها، ويتحدث البعض منهم عن حرب قصيرة الأمد يكون لسلاح الجو فيها دوراً بارزاً كما في السابق، بالتزامن مع تحرك سريع للقوات البرية لفرض سيطرة مؤقتة على المناطق التي تنطلق منها صواريخ المقاومة نحو العمق الصهيوني…/../..

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June 9th, 2012, 3:14 am


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