Syria Faces A New Economic Reality – By Ehsani

Syria Faces A New Economic Reality
By Ehsani for Syria Comment
Sept 26, 2011

The recently announced import suspension prohibits the import of  all products that have a customs duty of over 5 percent. This notice also covers countries that Syria signed a free trade agreement with (Turkey, Ukraine and the Arab countries for example).  The original signed free trade agreements will no longer be fully adhered to.

As expected, the Ministry did issue a list of products which received an exemption from the ruling.  There are 51 items on this list. The first 17 are of the food products variety like meat, fish, cashew nuts, almonds and bananas.  Some of the details on the list are mind-bogglingly trivial.  The type of fish that was exempted from the ban for example was sword fish which made it to item number 5. Fish (with teeth) from the south pole or Australia also made it to the exemption list at number 6. But the sword fish were dropped again in item 7 which allowed all fish other than sword fish or those from the south pole and Australia.

The rest of the items are mostly medical in nature. Examples include x-ray machines, various Lab equipments, Dental chairs, and prescription and sun glasses.  The only vehicles allowed are buses for the local public transportation companies, fire and ambulance trucks as well as fork lifts. Mobile phones (current customs duty of 10%) were also exempt from the ruling.  This suspension is effective for all imports after September 22, 2011 (those who used a local bank prior to this date are exempt). Overall, the complexity of this ruling can only be appreciated when one delves into even more detail of what is banned and what is not.

The General Reaction to the Ruling:

The deputy Minister of the Economy and Trade was in Aleppo today. He was in a packed room of businessmen at the city’s Chamber of Commerce. Several passionate pleas were made to rethink the decision and to exempt more products. Many explained how they already have goods on the way and wondered what they would with them (they did not have an L/C open before September 22nd).  One wondered why cashew nuts were exempted when the U.S. used to be the largest supplier of this product (Vietnam and India are now the world’s largest exporters).  To every question, the deputy Minister’s response was to ask that they do so in writing and when the Ministry receives their written questions, it will study them in detail and see how they can help. To which one food importer responded that it would be too late as his goods are already at the border and by the time his letter reaches Damascus and be read he would have already thrown away his rotting produce.

One can read more about these shock waves hitting the Syrian business community. In the meantime, government has tried its best to argue that the decision has both pluses and minuses. On the minus side, the government is aware that prices of the recently banned items will rise rather significantly. Indeed, reports of price hikes close to 40 percent have already been reported on few electronic items while companies like Sony, Sharp and others have suspended their sales in the country altogether. While the government did not mention it, the other minus will stem from the fact that the grey market will now flourish as illicit trade fills the inevitable void that will develop. On the plus side, the Minister of the economy and trade has tried to argue that this decision will help local producers and employment. The argument appears logical at first. However, by referring to the measures as “temporary”, one fails to see how local producers will add to expensive capacity and hire new employees knowing that the decision can be reversed anytime. Local manufacturers are unlikely to invest in new machinery and equipment in this atmosphere. As it is, a number of industrialists have put expansion or new projects on hold over the last few years as the government has proved incapable of delivering sufficient electricity capacity.

Syria’s external Accounts undermined by its fixed exchange rate

This article argues that while the decision to suspend imports for these products appears to have been caused by the recent sanctions imposed by the US and EU, Syria’s external accounts were already being undercut by the fixed exchange rate policy that had encouraged imports and discouraged exports for years.  In the end, the authorities have found it expensive and difficult to finance the insatiable demand for foreign made products at the rate of SYP 47 to the dollar while revenues from oil production and exports fell steadily.

The 2012 Syrian Budget Rises by 59%

In addition to the pressure stemming from an imbalance in its foreign trade position, the other main problem in the economy comes from the government budgeting situation.  Just yesterday, the state increased its expenditures by 59 percent when it announced its new budget for 2012. The Social subsidies alone will amount to 29% percent (US$ 7.72) of all government expenditures . This means that one third out of every Dollar that the government spends will go to supporting a hugely expensive subsidy program that has spiraled out of control thanks to the country’s demographics and illicit trading (especially in mazot – fuel oil). How large is the budget and total government expenditures this year? The number is $US 26.5 billion or 50 per cent of total nominal GDP. This is an astoundingly high number.

Failure to Tax

The US$9.8 billion jump in expenditures this year needs to be funded by increased tax collection in a business environment that will be extremely challenging. One of the examples of an obvious and gaping hole in the government’s ability to collect taxes comes from custom duties on imports. While the government imposes duties close to 50% on many products, the 2009 government revenue from this area indicates that the treasury was only able to collect US$ 0.56 billion or 4.3% of the total value of goods imported. Following the recent sanctions on Syrian crude exports, it seems that the country was able to export around 110,000  barrels per day.  Revenues from such exports used to be in the range of  $3.0 billion. Given the recent sanctions and even when alternative buyers are found, it is expected that this can only take place after a hair cut is offered on the globally traded price. This is likely to further erode the government’s ability to earn much needed foreign exchange. It is possible that the difficulties of finding buyers will be such that talk of barter trades will soon be discussed. Iran already does this with its own crude exports. Indeed, this morning the Financial Times claims that Syria is unable to find any buyers for its oil (See Story below).

The pros and cons of a stable exchange rate:

Since the last currency crisis in the mid-1980, Syria has defined both political and economic success by the stability of its foreign exchange regime.   The central bank used the stability of its foreign exchange as the main metric of successful economic management.  This metric did not include economic growth, employment level or the balance of payments as targets. Stable exchange rate led to inflation stability and this is all that mattered to the economic planners.

In a flexible exchange regime, a loss of competitiveness or a widening trade imbalance usually results in a weaker currency which acts as self-correcting valve that restores the initial imbalances over time. Artificially fixed exchange rates deprive an economy from such a correcting mechanism. This is what happened in Syria. While this policy seemingly held imported inflation in check, it was causing significant damage to external accounts.  As the country adopted the new social market economy and import restrictions were lifted, an import orgy was now underway.  This was augmented by free trade agreements with the Arab world and later with Turkey.  Local producers who lived for decades under the comfortable protection of “himaye wataniye” were now under assault from a global market place that was more efficient and competitive than them.  It did not take long for Syrians to dump their manufacturing hats and transform themselves into importers. Throughout this worsening export/import imbalance, the currency value did not budge.  The Central Bank intervened at any sign of SYP weakness.

For Syria to continue to finance importers at the rate of SYP 47 to $1 dollar, it needed matching foreign currency receipts from its exports, remittances or tourism.  The hopes were high when it came to the latter two.  Thanks to a steady fall in oil production and exports however, the country’s ability to accumulate serious foreign currency was becoming harder to accomplish.  In spite of such trends, the foreign exchange regime was never modified to weaken the SYP to help make imports more expensive and/or to give local producers a much needed slight competitive advantage.

Proponents of the stable fixed Exchange rate regime pointed to stable inflation as the primary objective and how allowing the SYP to devalue will harm the economy. In reality, however, what transpired is that the government exhausted its ability to finance the country’s increasing appetite to import. Much has been discussed of the fact that the Central Bank sits on a comfortable foreign exchange reserve position of nearly US$ 18 billion. In reality, this number is impossible to verify. The official government data and accounting is simply not transparent enough to confirm such claims. More transparency is highly desirable in an effort to reduce speculation and rely on factual data during such a critical period. In the meantime, the only thing certain is that the government has decided to conserve on whatever foreign reserves it has at its disposal to prepare for an extremely challenging economic times in the period ahead.

News Round Up

Ban forces Syria to cut oil production – Financial Times

Syria has told foreign oil companies to cut production due to a backlog of crude that has filled its storage capacity because the government has been so far unable to bypass an embargo on crude oil exports imposed by the European Union.

Syria has sought to sell its oil to nations outside the EU, which before the ban imported around 95 per cent of the country’s output.

But industry executives and oil traders said the country had been so far unable to attract new
buyers in spite of offering discounts.

The failure has forced foreign oil companies to pump crude originally earmarked for export into storage. “There is a backlog of crude in the country,” said an industry executive.

“Storage is filling up,” the executive added, saying that some companies had been told to reduce output.

Gulfsands Petroleum, the London-listed company which operates in Syria, has cut its production by around 40 per cent at the request of the authorities. The company is now pumping about 14,500 barrels a day, down from about than 24,000 b/d in August.

Industry executives said other international oil companies operating in the country, which include Royal Dutch Shell, Total of France, and state-owned CNPC of China and ONGC of India, have also recently received orders to cut back.

Although international oil companies hope the cuts are temporary, and will end when Syria finds nations willing to take its crude, others see the drop lasting as long as the EU embargo remains.

Brussels imposed the oil ban in response to a crackdown by the regime of Bashar al-Assad on pro-democracy activists that
has seen more than 2,700 people die in the past six months.

Syria produced in August around 370,000 b/d of low quality crude oil, according to the International Energy Agency, the western countries’ oil watchdog.

The country exported around 150,000 b/d, with the rest consumed domestically. Germany and Italy accounted for roughly two-thirds of Syria’s oil exports last year.

Imad Moustapha, Syria’s ambassador to Washington, said in a recent interview with the Financial Times that the country would have no problem finding markets for its oil.

“It’s not that we are approaching people, it’s the other way around. We
are being approached,” he said.

But so far this month not a single cargo of Syrian crude oil has left the nation’s main export oil ports, according to shipping data. Several tenders of low quality, high sulphur Souedie crude, the country’s main export stream, have failed to attract any interest, traders said.

Oil traders said the impact of the EU ban on Syrian oil was wider than previously expected as international banks refused to open letters of credits – a common instrument used in trading – with Syrian entities, even when to destinations outside the EU. Tanker-owners were also reluctant to send their vessels to Syrian ports, they said.

The production losses compound the tight supply and demand balance in the Mediterranean and European region, home of four of the world’s 10 largest oil importing countries: Germany, France, Spain and Italy.

But the shortfall is not nearly as big as that created by the civil war in Libya, which produced before the start of the revolution 1.6m b/d of high quality, low sulphur crude oil.

Shell directed questions about production in Syria to the Damascus-based Al-Furat Petroleum Company, which could not be reached. Al-Furat is a joint venture between Syria’s state-owned General Petroleum Corporation, which controls a 50 per cent stake, Shell Oil and CNPC. Total did not responded to calls and e-mails.

Also from the FT, Syrian to look east for oil markets

Imad Moustapha, Damascus’s envoy in Washington, says the country will be able to offset the impact of western sanctions by looking east.

Mr Moustapha would not elaborate on which companies or countries had contacted his government but Syria’s bravado underlines the difficulty that western nations have in trying to inflict economic pain on President Bashar al-Assad’s regime in a bid to make it stop its violent crackdown on six months of pro-democracy protests.

“It’s not that we are approaching people, it’s the other way around. We are being approached,” Mr Moustapha told the Financial Times. “But no contracts have been signed yet.”

The US has imposed repeated rounds of sanctions on the Syrian regime since the unrest began in March, most recently banning any US investment in Syria’s crucial energy sector and prohibiting US companies from buying Syrian oil.

The sanctions were mainly symbolic as the US has minimal involvement in Syria’s energy sector. But the European Union, which buys more than 90 per cent of Syria’s crude oil exports, followed suit with an oil embargo of its own.

The 27-member bloc, however, said members had until mid-November to stop importing oil, a grace period during which Syria could line up other buyers for its oil, thereby possibly limiting the immediate impact.

Mr Moustapha brushed off the American sanctions, saying the US had been taking such actions since the 1950s. But the European sanctions were a different story.

“Of course they are going to have a negative effect. They create a challenge for us to find a way to develop our economy and we are not denying that it will be a challenge,” he said.

Syria would be forced to shift its economic gaze eastward, Mr Moustapha said, just as Iran increasingly looked to China after chilling sanctions on its energy and financial sectors.

“We will re-orient our economy towards Asia, Africa and South America. We have a whole spectrum of options open to us,” he said.

Syria exports a heavy, sour crude oil called Souedie, chiefly to refiners in Germany, Italy, France and the Netherlands. Although it would be expensive to transport it beyond the Mediterranean Sea, both China and India have the technical capacity to refine this type of oil.

Ayham Kamel, a Middle East analyst at the Eurasia Group in Washington, said he would not be surprised if customers had been knocking on Syria’s door, looking to take advantage of the political situation to get a cheap de

Harvard website hacked by Syria protesters – BBC

Along with a picture of Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, the hacked home page showed a message saying the “Syrian Electronic Army Were Here”.

A further message made terror threats against the United States and criticised its opposition to the Assad regime.

Harvard said this has been the work of a “sophisticated individual or group”.

“The university’s homepage was compromised by an outside party this morning. We took down the site for several hours in order to restore it. The attack appears to have been the work of a sophisticated individual or group,” said a Harvard spokesman.

The website was hacked on Monday morning by what appeared to be sympathisers of President Assad of Syria, with a picture of the president in military uniform appearing in front of a Syrian flag.

This was linked to another image of Syrian national colours, with a message accusing the United States of involvement in the uprisings against President Assad.

Brief Note:

The Sarkozy story from the previous thread has elicited many responses questioning the accuracy of the report and why the story was published without investigating further into the claim. It is indeed the case that SC did not do more than link to the story as it appeared in Al Diyar. Another reader asked the source of the information behind Hotbird’s decision to stop carrying addunia. It was here.

Comments (1,388)


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1101. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

SNP is totally for free and independent thinking, freedom of expression, explicit language and free hugs, free kisses and free sex too. So we voted for the mild, the first one, since there isn’t a category that says Un-moderated or Free. We are as offended by Hijab Shari, Salafi and Wahabi Moslems as a prostitute screaming XXX rated language in the street; we find it all to be equally offensive, so who to judge.

I also received many complaints about Alex calling SNP pro regime. When he knew well since 2005, that we are alone in opposition for many years, they were not there, we invented them online. We do not support the Baath Party or the regime, we support Syria and work to protect it. It is that protection we seek that forces us to stand with the Assad Central Government despite the fact we received a slap on the face from him, passing a Party law that practically equate SNP with MB. We cannot afford any other choice now. We should not trade our narrow interests with losing the whole country. We are not guppy or fool like others. So this Menabbek and Mamenhebbek is really silly and childish. It is also not fair to have pro and anti regime only, there got to be a third category that will describe our position as well as Alex for example, why not think of one (third Category) please.

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October 2nd, 2011, 3:35 am

 

1102. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

@SNK

Agree, Kurds are not Assyrians because in Zachariah Sitshin Chronicle of Earth, many tablets he translated stated that North of Assyria there are the Mountain people who has no King. That region is basically Kurdistan today. Kurds and Israelites have the same history; they both never had king, currency or anything resemble a state. Both located on the outline area of known Civilization and States and are tolerated by the powerful states that surrounded them on the condition they stay neutral and make no trouble. In one instant the Kurds of old did make trouble for Assyria and were beaten up, but unlike Israeli only once they did make a trouble. The Israelites became a problem and were invaded and dispersed. Kurds, Israelites and Arabs have throughout history lived as gypsies, nomads who held grunt on other nations. They carried this grunt throughout the centuries, even to this day.

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October 2nd, 2011, 3:52 am

 

1103. Revlon said:

Dear Alex,
I share Majedkhldoun’s assessment of the rating scale proposed for moderation that you have posted for voting.

I also find it rather vague and confusing:
– MILD category indicated no restrictions and as such should be called RESTRICTION FREE!
– BALANCED tolerates mild violations. The word balance would intuitively mean in the middle and not mild!

I would have preferred to have a censorship scale of two ratings instead;
A low level that would include your mild and balanced,
and a high level that would include your strong category.

Since you have already posted it, you might want to collapse the first two groups and consider them as one in the final tally of votes.

I would also suggest that those who face banning ought to have a chance to be able post their rebuttal which ought to be considered in the final verdict of the moderator.

Cheers!

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October 2nd, 2011, 3:54 am

 

1104. NK said:

Mr. (we were in the opposition before anyone else)

Here’s a reminder from 2007
============================================================
ان سوريا لحافظها اسد

Dear Syrian Nationalists,

I urge you to participate in the Syrian referendum for President, cast your
“ YES ” vote for President Bashar Assad.

He demonstrated a great example of Syrian national courage, made Syrians stand tall and proud. Not only he stood solidly against the diabolically Jewish inspired Greater Middle East Zionist Project, but helped defeat it once and for all.

It was Zionist criminal Jew named Pelosi and other Jewish criminals that traveled to Damascus recently, confused, defeated and humiliated. It was Zionist Negro Rice that begged to meet our great Foreign Affair Minister Muallem in Sharm Al Sheikh, it was Christian Zionist Bush, the genocidal murderer of 700,000 innocent Moslems that relented and let go of his humiliating defeat, asking defeated Jew Olmert, who last summer was miserably defeated on the hand of much powerful and moral force, the Lebanese resistance fighters. Bush, is begging Olmert to go and make peace with Bashar Assad. Olmert, coward, defeated and like his Jewish nation, morally bankrupt and historically amount not much more than a fraud is practically begging President Bashar Assad for peace.

Is not that enough signs for you to know that President Bashar Assad policies were in the interests of Syria and Syrians, was that stand of no compromise, no surrender, no defeat a winner and a case for pride to all Syrians. Was he not the guest of honor at the recent summit of low achievers, unfitted, unhinged, impotents and coward Arab rulers gathering in desert sand Arabia.

Yes, the price of goods and rents are up in Syria, but think about it, would you rather pay the price of freedom, liberty, security and dignity or you rather live like the Palestinians in an awful open air concentration camp called Gazashwicz! Faced with Arial rocket attack hourly. Would you want to pay the price of security and pursuit of happiness or walk the streets of your Syrian towns and villages staring at rows of M16 rifle nozzles held by an illiterate American Soldier from some daddy to big it hurt kinda of State like Texas, ready to empty his rifle at your 2 years old child if he felt like it with impunity.

Imagine if Syria did not have to endure the cost of sheltering Millions of Palestinians, Iraqis, Lebanese, not mention the half a million Armenian Christians, Kurds, Turkmen’s, Cherkassy, and other who ran away from the violence and upheavals that ravaged their land by Western Oil Companies, under the guise of Freedom and Democracy Programs.

You want to live in Ghadristan or Hariristan State like, mortgage your country to foreign bankers and oil companies! You want to live in concentration camps, you want to live in Lebanese Jumblatian crussaders State go see what it feel like it next door.

In life we make choices, make your own, don’t let the likes of Kaddam’s, Bayanooni’s makes it for you. Live as a proud Syrian in secure country, under a smart, young and solidly National President.

Vote Yes for Bashar Assad for President, vote for Syria.

مركز سفارة الجمهورية العربية السورية– واشنطن
2215 Wyoming Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20008
202-233-6313
الفاكس: 202-234-9548, 202-265-4585
info@syrembassy.net

الاستفتاء على منصب رئاسة الجمهورية بتاريخ 27 أيار
رجاء اضافة صوت ايجابي ـ نعم ـ لسيادة الرئيس بشار الأسد, شكرآ

معتز محمد عبد الرحمن الدندشي
لوس انجلوس , الولايات المتحدة الأميركية
صوت شخصي وتمثيلا عن الحزب القومي السوري

I cast my vote for the first time ever to vote on anything in Syria to re-elect President Bashar Asad, President of Syria. No, I am not making this under duress but this Arabic paragraph below speaks volume why Syrians should re-elect this President.

Metaz K M Aldendeshe
Personally and on behalf of the
Syrian Nationalist Party

“سننتخب الرئيس بشار الأسد لأنه وفر لنا الأمن والأمان، أراهن أي شخص يذهب إلى بلدان عربية أخرى ويستطيع التجول لوحده بعد العاشرة ليلاً. في سوريا إذا أردت السفر من محافظة إلى أخرى تمشي وأنت مطمئن حتى لو مشيت في أماكن وطرق مقطوعة أيضًا، هناك تآخ ومحبة بين جميع الطوائف، وسوريا هي البلد المثالي في التعايش السلمي بين الطوائف وبشهادة الجميع. وهل يريدون أعداء سوريا أن يجرونا إلى الحرب الطائفية وإلى نزاع نهايته كما انتهت العراق وفلسطين وكما انتهت إليه الحال في لبنان أيضًا، حيث الذين يدعون أن الرئيس الأسد يشكل مع إيران وحزب الله مثلث شيعي ويريد إقصاء السنة في البلاد هذا كذب وخال من المنطق… فقط المراد من ذلك اللعب على وتر الطائفية لبث التفرقة بين الشعب السوري ولهؤلاء نقول كلنا أمة لا إله إلا الله لكن انظروا ماذا فعل… من القادة والملوك العرب هم طلبوا من إسرائيل القضاء على سوريا، وكما أن المواطن السوري، من خلال السياسة الخارجية الناجحة، أصبح له مكانة مميزة في نفوس الكثيرين، ففي مصر ينظرون إلى السوريين على أنهم “أكدع ناس” ويقولونها علنًا إن رئيسكم هو مثال الشرف والصدق وهو من رفع رأس الإسلام”.

Posted by: Syrian Nationalist Party | May 24, 2007 at 11:47 PM
============================================================

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:00 am

 

1105. Revlon said:

FSA is promoting and has already succeded in a strategy that would promote oundeclared, on site defection of army personnel.

سوريون نت تكشف عن خطة للجيش السوري الحر تتضمن شق الجنود والضباط مع إبقائهم في مناصبهم للمساعدة في يوم الحسم

2011/10/02

http://www.sooryoon.net/?p=34340

دمشق ـ خاص بـ سوريون نت:

قالت مصادر وثيقة الصلة بالثوار في دمشق لـ سوريون نت إن الجيش السوري الحر بدأ عملية خطيرة تدعو إلى إقناع الضباط والجنود السوريين بالانشقاق عن الجيش الأسدي مع البقاء ضمن وظائفهم ومناصبهم بانتظار ساعة الحسم، مع المساعدة في تسريب المعلومات للثوار والمنشقين، وكذلك التغطية على المطلوبين، وأضافت المصادر بأن عددا من المطلوبين تم التغاضي عنهم من قبل ضباط وجنود لا يزالون على رأس عملهم ولكن لا يقومون باعتقال المطلوبين الذين يمرون من خلال حواجزهم..

وكشف ثوار في مناطق سورية عدة فضلوا عدم الكشف عن مناطقهم وهوياتهم لـ سوريون نت بأن عددا من القناصة لم يعودوا يطلقوا الرصاص عليهم بشكل مباشر، وإنما يطلقونها على حولهم تفاديا لقتلهم، مما يوحي باختراق كبير للجيش السوري الحر لعدد من كتائب وفرق آل أسد ..

وأفيد أن انشقاقات كبيرة حدثت وتحدث داخل الحرس الجمهورس السوري وربما تنبئ عن انقلاب عسكري يطيح بآل أسد خصوصا وأن الجيش والمخابرات الأسدية منهمكة هذه الأيام بمتابعة المنشقين والجيش السوري ونحوهما مما أفقدها متابعة الثورة والثوار والمظاهرات وهو أمر إيجابي جدا في خدمة الثورة السلمية السورية

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:06 am

 

1106. Revlon said:

Nine mobsters of Thug One’s forces were confronted and killed by KIW of FSA, while they were shooting indiscriminately at AlBayadah round about in Homs.

This is how illegitimate Thug one’s forces are falling; By the legitimate FSA defense forces.

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom
أموي مباشر #syria •◄ بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم بحمد الله قامت فصيلة من كتيبة ضباط خالد بن الوليد بالتصدي لمجموعة من العصابة الاسدية امن وشبيحة كانوا يطلقون النار عند دوار البياضة فأردت منهم تسع قتلى وعدد من الجرحى الله اكبر
3 hours ago

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:19 am

 

1107. Revlon said:

For those who can not hear: We want your head Bashar; in deaf language

بدنا راسك يا بشار الاسد بلغة الاشارة – مأخوذ من نشرة قناة الجزيرة – تنسيقية المسيفرة – أموي

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:22 am

 

1108. Revlon said:

Regime media claim of arrest of Colonel R AlAsaad is unfounded.
Press Office,
FSA
2-10 -2011
9 hours ago

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom

الجيش السوري الحر >> ننوه: إلى انه مايبثه النظام الفاجر وأبواقه الأعلامية على صفحات الإنترنت من إشاعات حول إعتقال قائد الجيش السوري الحر العقيد رياض الأسعد ماهي ألا إشاعات مغرضة كاذبة لاصحة لها

هام – جميع ما صدر و ما يصدر من إعلام النظام من إشاعات فهي مجرد كذب يهدف لإضعاف معنويات الثوار…
– العقيد رياض الأسعد / قائد الجيش السوري الحر بخير و الحمد الله و مستمر بأداء واجبه بقيادة الأعمال العسكرية للجيش السوري الحر
– يرجى عدم الانجرار وراء اشاعات النظام الفاسد و ابواقه

الجيش السوري الحر / المكتب الإعلامي
2-10 -2011

9 hours ago

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:25 am

 

1109. Revlon said:

Phalange of Mu3ath AlRaqqad engaged with and killed 25 of Asad forces in Deir Azzor.

حركة سوريا شباب من أجل الحرية Youth Syria For Freedom
أموي مباشر #syria •◄ بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم // الجيش السوري الحر / الجناح الالكتروني : قامت ليلة الامس فصيلة من ابطال كتيبة معاذ الركاض في دير الزور بنصب كمين لكلاب الاسد مما اسفر عن مقتل اكثر من25 خنزير من ال الاسد ولله الحمد وانسحب الابطال بخير وسلامة .. دون وقوع اي اصابات بين رجالنا الكرام … ع الجنة رايحيين شهداء بالملايين … ع جهنم رايحيين شبيحة بالملايين
9 hours ago

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October 2nd, 2011, 4:28 am

 

1110. Muhammad said:

We still have people arguing whether the regime is shooting at protesters, even after 7 months of doing so. Leave alone all the video evidence and testimonies from literally now thousands of people. I personally know that orders to shoot at demos are given to the army and have mentioned it on this forum before. I have even elaborated on the methodology of it. This has been confirmed to me by people on both sides of the action.

But no, I should discard all this and believe one of these confessions on Syrian TV which will always flow like this:

1. I went out to demonstrate
2. Mention Hariri or one of his affiliates
3. We were given weapons and money (optional: Aljazeera pills and kabab sandwiches)
4. I started shooting at demonstrators and the police force

For goodness sake, by what logic am I supposed to connect 1 to 4 ? I’m sorry but I’m not stupid.

And you still have people talking about reforms when in 7 months the Syrian media has:

1. Never mentioned Presidential elections.
2. Never hosted an opposition figure. I’m not asking for Ar’aroor or Ghadri here. Host Kilo and Sarah and let them speak their minds ON AIR.
3. Never filmed one of these thousands of demos that happen in Syria.
4. Never acknowledges that asking for regime change is not necessarily tantamount to treason.
5. Never defined the source of the huge “conspiracy” against them except in the most vague terms. If Hariri is so powerful as to destabilize Syria in this way (in fact, I think he is an idiot), just ask Hizb Allah to sort him out. They have done it before. If the American Ambassador is truly leading the armed attacks, just expel him.

The Syrian state has not:

1. Removed law articles permitting security forces to literally do as they wish with the Syrian population.
2. Punished even one security official involved in the “mistakes that happened” … Besho (thanks Aboud) seems to know that mistakes happened but does not know what they are. I want them brought out on national TV and “confess” like those “terrorists”.
3. Allowed international media and human rights organisation unrestricted access despite all the empty talk by regime mouthpieces. Every other “bouq” said that they should be allowed including Buthaina the snake. Why on earth is it still not happening ?

All reform talk is just pure BS. The Syrian regime is waiting for the storm to pass to inflict the most horrendous revenge on rebellious cities. We know it and we have been through this before. I -personally- know people who are 3rd generation after the 80’s events who are still punished by the regime. some are denied jobs, some are denied passports, some are locked up and you name it. We will not be deceived twice.

Alex

I still think you are not fit as moderator. More so now that I had the chance to check your historical record on the few links you posted. Most of them seem to not had an update for months !

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October 2nd, 2011, 5:04 am

 

1111. Mina said:

I repost a link that has been posted yesterday but didn’t get thumbs so it seems as usual that important news go direct to the trash

http://english.al-akhbar.com/content/syria%E2%80%99s-universities-breaking-taboo-talking-politics

The protesters have achieved what is needed: there will be elections, parties are forming. This cannot happen in 24 hours. People with a foreign agenda have been refusing reforms and dialogs since march already stating “no we don’t want reforms we want isqaaat al nizam like they say in Egypt and Yemen”. Well 6 months later, they have the ex minister of defence acting as president in Egypt, and a full war from the gov towards the people in Yemen (electricity 10 minutes a day in Sanaa, no food, regular majzara in the demos, universities are closed etc).

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October 2nd, 2011, 5:11 am

 

1112. Syria no kandahar said:

Question to REVLON
تم نصب كمين لكلاب وتم اصطياد خنازير؟
التفسير الوحيد ان الخنازير اخوانجيه

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October 2nd, 2011, 5:42 am

 

1113. Revlon said:

1087. Dear TRUE,
I am indebted to you for I am now able to claim that I have more than 2 brain cells without the need for craniotomy, biopsy and histological confirmation; I do appreciate your writings on this blog.

Quitting will not only let down those who share my appreciation of your contribution, but more importantly our brethren in Syria who are deprived of the freedom of expression that you ardently support and ably promote on their behalf on this blog.

True, I urge you to reconsider.
Syria needs your opinion on this blog, like it needs all others.

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October 2nd, 2011, 5:47 am

 

1114. Revlon said:

1110. Syria no kandaharsaid:
“Question to REVLON
تم نصب كمين لكلاب وتم اصطياد خنازير؟
التفسير الوحيد ان الخنازير اخوانجيه

SNK! Try using your other idle brain cell! …. if you have one!

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October 2nd, 2011, 5:51 am

 

1115. Muhammad said:

Here, some of the video evidence of Assad using all types of military force against demonstrators.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PWNdCR9X-HI&feature=share

Ah, but all these happened in fake cities in Aljazeera studios … and you wonder why no one believes you.

لا للاستحمار

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October 2nd, 2011, 6:23 am

 

1116. Syria no kandahar said:

Revlon
You have lost Alrastan battle,very decisive one,another cancer cells have been removed.your lies are expected with the degree of anger you and Islamic extremists have suffered.Harmoush and Riad armies are like amouse playing with the tail of the great Syrian Army,even Mr Robert ford has declared that the Syrian army is very strong and very united.You claim to be secular ,why are using all these Islamic names for your group of defected or deserted rats:معاذ بن
كتيبة سعد بن…is that your secularism mr MB.You are calling army soldiers كلاب وخنازير ….that is half a million syrians they are all كلاب و خنازير…why?who are you to call half a million syrians dogs and pigs?is it because they are not defecting and joining your Harmoush and Riad thugs?is that what your religion teaches you ولا تنادو الناس بالألقاب .or that is selective to people you like only?you see you are a person or organization filled with hate,which turns you into an actual blind person both mentally and spiritually,love has no existence in your life,even your god you have chosen to only learn from him hate.you have to open your heart and mind and think:is splitting the army and going with civil war good for our country,if you think so,I think you are the problem.

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October 2nd, 2011, 6:43 am

 

1117. Revlon said:

1114. OK SNK! Revert to your first brain cell now…. and try again!

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October 2nd, 2011, 7:03 am

 

1118. Husam said:

Tara, Annie, Revlon, Amir, Hytham, Muhammed, Majedkheldoun, True, Newbie(s) and dozen others…

Re: Aboud, etc…

1) Syria Comment has no proper privacy policy period, it means anything you say here can be sold, reprinted, deleted, modified, transferred, and your identity revealed to anyone. Period. Without a privacy policy, any one of the 5-6 moderators can do anything with your information without any recourse from you whatsoever. And before you all scream, that I am spreading fear, then why not just have a privacy policy and shut the likes of me up?

2) Syria Comment is run by an atheist/anti-Islamic group of people who run tight together from day 1. They, and only they decide who gets striked or banned and for how long. They are biased to the teeth. The minute they learn that you have an inkling of faith, you are put in a special outcast box and will never make it into their inner circle (much like our Syrian Regime). Look at Tara’s ratings for example. Alex’s comment: “notify me rather than complain later” is B.S. as he purposely turns a blind eye on slandering and attacks done unto others by his buddies. He had the opportunity to ban the likes of SNK, and few others who insight hatred, used foul language and got away with it – is proof that the few landlords that run this forum are heavily biased. No, its not just about pro-regime or pro-assad, its also about your faith (or lack thereof). FYI, the only secular (atheist) at heart and has my utmost respect is OTW.

3) Syria Comment’s weak rules are certainly bendable based on seniority, privilege and beliefs of the commentator. Don’t kid yourself. We have been there many times. The current poll weak, medium strong will do nothing as the moderators are biased up to their eyeballs.

4) Do you ever wonder: where are the Syrian Sunnis & Christians who form the majority of Syrian Expats? According to Alex, there are 3000 daily readers. They won’t partake in this platform where God, Prophets and their faith gets insulted day in day out on SC (before the Arab Spring, 50% of SC’s topics were bigoted in the name of free speech…anyone newbie who wants a sampling, just ask). Look at Hytham Khouri, the minute he starts talking about what Christianity is all about, he got pounced back too. Many of you respect SC because it is one of the very few places where Syrians meet. You can be the biggest brain in Economics, Politics or Science, but if you have no respect for others and have deep seated hatred, then your soul is dead.

5) For the record, Islamcommnet.com that Alex refers to is nothing more a platform to slander Islam, spread misconception and hatred again in the name of free speech. I have no problem with Daniel Pipes and the like, because the mission is clearly visible. However, Islamcomment list its “number one” advisor on its advisory board as none other than Dr. Elie Elhadj. This is the male-version of Wafa Sultan. For those of you have no clue who Elhadj is just search his name on SC and read his inflammatory bigoted articles and debates. The SC dinosaurs as Alex likes to call them, came out in droves for his defence. Mr. Otrakji, you are anti-Islamic and you are in denial. How can you be a moderator? You are not in the center, and never were.

5) Alex is wrong about your IP address revealing just the city you live in… your neighbourhood is revealed too. Anyone who knows a bit about Google analytics or software like Clicktale can tell you that everything from your browser screen resolution down to your language of choice, connection speed, web provider and much more. Clicktale goes into onsite real-time behavioural metrics. This measures user behaviour, heat maps, form analytics and can detect much more about the user. These are basic tools. And of course, your IP address can be hacked and your identity can be known as easy as 1-2-3. As Alex stated: there are 5 or 6 people who have access to your IP Address. The “programmer” who ever that is, has capabilities beyond the comprehension of most users here. The problem is there is no accountability, no privacy policy and weak governance. But hey, when SC was shut down you all whined till you were blue.

6) Ah yes…if you don’t like it here, then leave.

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October 2nd, 2011, 7:18 am

 

1119. Syria no kandahar said:

Revlon
2Healthy brain cells are worth million micro-wahabi-dead cells.

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October 2nd, 2011, 7:40 am

 

1120. DIGGING FOR GOLD IN BOSRA said:

@ Ya Mara Ghalba “I’ve never seen a credible video of security forces firing into crowds of unarmed protesters. The regime would have nothing to gain by adopting a policy different from what its current policy is.
For the most part, anti-regime demonstrations are permitted and unhindered. The regime would have nothing to gain by adopting a policy different from what its current policy is.”

I’m sorry, but you are seriously deluded if you believe what you are saying. There are countless videos that show soldiers and Assad loyalists firing at protestors, even Iran has tentatively admonished the regime for its policy of violence against protestors. How do you explain the deaths of 2700 people? No one hoping to be taken seriously is in any doubt that many unarmed protestors have been killed. The debate has shifted. It is now about whether protestors should agree to Assad’s plea for more time in which to enact his promised reforms. It is about whether the reforms he is advocating go far enough. It is about whether a different government can credibly protect religious minorities. It is definitely not about whether scores of unarmed protestors have been killed by his forces.

“by anti-regime people who have been trying to undermine the regime’s legitmacy.”

I want you to explain to me from where exactly the Assad regime acquires its legitimacy. I’m serious. Where do you think it comes from?

You clearly haven’t been to Syria for a very long time.

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October 2nd, 2011, 7:49 am

 

1121. Revlon said:

1117. SNK! Use them both now, together!

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October 2nd, 2011, 7:53 am

 

1122. Tara said:

Digging

Ya Mara ghalba behaves like Iranian IRG, and probably is. They believe Assad’s legitimacy emanates from the approval of the great Ayatolla Khamenei. This is very clear from his writings. Please note that I do not believe that Pirouz is related to IRG. I believe what Pirouz has told us. He is independent Iranian- American.

Ya Mara Ghalba,

Am I mistaken?

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:01 am

 

1123. majedkhaldoun said:

Husam
I agree totally with what you said.

There are people who has hate as their motivation,they are not interested in discussion of justice and freedom,they do not care about being just, some resort to pesonal attack,some resort to fabricating things,most on Sc are anti islamic, where I believe Islam or christianity or judaiism should not be part of discussions,this should be political forum,
There are those who are not willing to change their mind even they admit there are serious mistakes,we do not have an acceptable basic agreement,we can build our discussions on,there are those who advocate freedom but obviously what they say is against what they preach.

I very much like to have personal contact with some commenters E-Mail.I trust OTW blog.

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:06 am

 

1124. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

Merciful

REVLON @ 1119

SNK! Use them both now, together!

Don’t be mean, that might overpower the circuit and cause a blown fuse.

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:15 am

 

1125. Mango said:

( For Politically correct Istanbul oppositionists )
http://nstarikov.ru/blog/11598
Road to Damascus
For short circuit of a ring of instability round Israel and a war unbinding in this region, to Anglo-Saxons is not enough one element. One fragment of a mosaic of operated chaos does not keep within the Near-Eastern boiling copper.
This element – Syria.
And to direct events in this country under the Libyan scenario one person disturbs ….
His name is Muammar Kaddafi. While it is live – in Libya there is a legitimate authority. While it is live a victory of the West and Al-Kajedy in Libya cannot be definitive.
So – the road to Damascus is closed.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Af-hiVUsa8
http://rutube.ru/tracks/4733406.html?v=da2d5693fb551d18fc292c302e5c48da

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:16 am

 

1126. majedkhaldoun said:

Congratulations to all Syrian, Syrian national council has been formed,it is a turning point in Syria history, I think there has to be financial support, where money is the mother milk of all political movement.

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:17 am

 

1127. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

Civilized Discourse

Alex’s appeal for civility:

Dear regime supporters on SC: I hope you would try to avoid calling the pro revolution commentators here as Salafi “thugs” etc … you can use “religious fanatic” instead, and they can call you “regime extremist” Unless the poll tells us otherwise, we will try to moderate the language we use.

Suggesting one’s subjective and misleading labels for adoption as the language of discourse should immediately disqualify anyone from being an objective moderator. The most vociferous anti-regime commentators on Syria Comment have never expressed any attachment to religious fanaticism and the moderator knows that. When did SHEILA, OTW, MAJEDKHALDOUN, ZIADSOURY, MAJHOOL, HAYTHAM KHOURY, me, the more moderate critics like EHSANI and GHUFRAN, and even those whose posts demonstrate faith such as REVLON and NK have ever implied in their own words any religious fanaticism. Suggesting such a misleading label by indicating that it is accepted by the moderators under the pretense of encouraging civilized dialog is nothing less than kowtowing the regime propaganda line against all evidence the moderators have more than anyone else. This is beyond failure, moderators should try to clarify and reject such charges when they know from the posting history of each individual that such charges are bogus. To see the moderators of Syria comment doing the opposite is heartbreaking. I would sure like to hear whether Ehsani concurs with this.

The error and lapse of judgment will not be any less grave if the above recommendation was written with innoncent carelessness as I and many others hope, and not due to malice as I and many others fear, even if slightly.

I will let the loyalists and regime defenders defend themselves against the charge of extremism.

Too serious to be sarcastic about

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October 2nd, 2011, 8:28 am

 

1128. Observer said:

Well, I am seeing the civil war in Syria right here on this blog. It started and it is clear that a so called moderator here is biased and this was evident before the start of the revolution in Syria.
What is amazing is that the moderator lives in a democracy and enjoys free speech and the rule of law and basic human rights regardless of his background. Yet it seems that the same cannot apply to the Syrian people.
I have said this before, every small group in the Arab world wants a secular democratic system that allows the group to retain its religious ethnic identity while denying it to the majority Sunni Arab populations. Banning one commentator while allowing some rabid others to remain on board is a microcosm of the situation in Syria.
When the revolution triumphs and the regime is sent to the dustbin of history this blog will no longer be relevant.
The germs are developing resistance and spreading; the rats are about to finish the cockroaches.
Cheers

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:05 am

 

1129. sheila said:

To #1097. Syria no Kandahar,
The Kurds are one of the indigenous populations of Syria. They have been in Syria way before Arabs and Muslims arrived. They are not Semitic like the Arabs, rather Indo-European like the Persians. This does not mean that they came from Iran and that they are not Syrian in its current definition. Kurds were tribes in these areas with their distinct language. Their language always existed, but was not written until recently. The only reason why Kurds started having nationalistic aspirations is because of their maltreatment by all countries involved, whether Syria, Turkey, Iraq or Iran. I am rather embarrassed to read your post attacking the Kurds. They are part of the Syrian fabric and do mix very well with Arabs. They are not falsifying any historical facts, but demanding to be treated fairly. But then again, who in Syria is treated fairly?

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:10 am

 

1130. zoo said:

Only in Syria …
(Sadeq Khanafer | DP-News – almanar )

SYRIA- Ridiculously, the “Syrian” uprising is not sectarian, but still they hold up slogans such as “Alawites to coffins…Christians to Beirut,” “Muslims and Christians tread on Alawites…” and “Out loud we say, not one Alawite we want to see,” or “O! Alawite, O! Pagan! We will open a grave for you!”… but they say their uprising is not sectarian!

Preposterously, their “revolution” is national and not linked to any foreign conspiring party, yet one will hear them say slogans such as, “O! Israel! We sacrifice our Souls and Blood for you!” or “Bandar, Bandar, Hariri …, We Want Al-Jazeera,” and more slogans like, “No Iran or Hezbollah, We Want One That Fears God!” Are not those the ones who tweet and call out for the American intervention and involvement on their so-called “uprising”?

Idiotically, they claim their “uprising” is peaceful, yet their “sheikhs” have declared “Jihad” against their Syrian army and their internal security forces and against whoever disagrees with them. Are not they the ones who slaughtered the officers and the privates along with their families, maimed, and mutilated the corpses in application for their sectarian slogans? Are not they who snipe their own citizens from the tops of the minarets using American sniper rifles?

Only in Syria…
The “sheikhs” of dissension took the profession of “Ifta ̉” (religious final judgmental science ruling on all sorts of life matters that become obligatory.) and theorizing for it setting the sectarian haughtiness at fire, but never to reform or defend the interests and the rights of their citizens as they claim. How paradoxical they are! The “fatwa’s” ink (the individual judgments issued by the “Mufti” sheikhs.) has not yet dried up regarding the rejection for demonstrations and the revolutions in Egypt, Tunisia and other countries! How could this happen and they were proud about having printed out five million copies of their “fatwa’s” prohibiting demonstrations for being a breaching sin in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Bahrain.

How could they goaded and spurred in their fanatic sectarian speeches for the killing of all the Alawites, displacement of the Christians out of Syria, ridding of the Ishmaelites, the Druze , and the Sufis. Here came “sheikh” Saleh Al-Luhaidan with his “fatwa” allowing to rid of one third of the Syrian nation in order to relieve two thirds of it, while he ruled that demonstrating in Saudi Arabia and other countries was a sinful breach because it would cause disorder and ruin both private and public property. Was not ruling against demonstrating in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Tunisia, and Egypt a form of support for the moderate regimes that opted to surrender? It was an act in the core of politics that served “Israel,” and had to do neither with religion nor with the religious vision! Otherwise, how could their spurring, provocations, and invitations for demonstrations up at their media podiums in addition to their satellite televisions be explained when it came to Syria and only Syria?

How could the uprising be a “revolution” in Syria while it is considered “a security disorder” in Bahrain that calls for the Arab Peninsula forces and its shield intervention?
The fag ends of the blaspheming groups have offered the grace of Heaven when they disclosed a wicked conspiracy against Syria. It became clear when they instrumentally chose violence, slaughtering, devastating property, and they used the sectarian style to address other citizens, a step which made Syria retrieve its vitality and power and encounter that conspiracy with absolute forcefulness.

Only in Syria…
Certain Arabian and foreign satellite televisions spur and lie and distort facts in the ugliest manner one could imagine based on “Lie and lie till people believe you.” Miracles occur on those so-called “professional” satellite televisions. Eye witnessing must have the final say, yet one finds observers here and observers there, ―none of them located in Syria― provide you with the latest casualties for confrontations in Syria for any day! However, they never mention any internal security or military martyrs whose coffins we see every day in the Syrian media.

The observers do not possess any information about the slaughtering of the security, and if they do, they classify that under “The regime killed them because they refused the orders to fire at the civilians.” It seems that those satellite TV’s have taught viewers for years to scrutinize and to double check on the sources of news; as a result, those viewers now have passed the test while the deceivers have failed.

Only about Syria, one can view an analysis by “a prominent Arab thinker” on a prominent Arab satellite TV contradicting himself tens of times and subsequently submits to the disclosed policies of that satellite TV. The interviewer asks “the Arab thinker” about the fears rising from the scenario of Hama, and he says it is impossible in the presence of media stations and high technical instruments … Naturally, that answer did not appeal to the lady interviewing him and she proceeds to irritatedly say, “But Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned of a new Hama.” At last, that “thinker” realizes her message and proceeds saying,” Yes, the mentality that was present in Hama is still there and still more, there are more killings than those that happened in Hama…”

The same goading channels assure the demonstrating massive marches heading for both Abbasid and Omayyad Squares in Damascus. Simultaneously, you change the channel to the live broadcasting the Syrian satellite TV airing from the same two squares and the roads leading to them both, and they prove that the situation there is very normal. However, the goading channels insist on their lying, because if they back up, they are going to speed up their bankruptcy before their viewers.

Only in Syria…
Of the so-called, “the national Arabian Revolution” one will find slogans such as “O! Could I Sacrifice my Blood for You, Israel?” In addition, one of the leading figures of this “revolution” abroad is Farid Al-Ghadiri who visited Israel in 2007, was a guest at the Knesset, and took a tour in several cities one of which was Haifa. Then, he was blamed by the Arab Parliamentary members of the Knesset for his wrongdoing. Here he comes today to announce that” One day the Israeli flag will be hoisted in Damascus, because the Syrian nation is peaceful, good, and cannot hold hatred; however, Bashar Al-Assad has imposed on the people aversion, fighting, and enmity.” The dissident who lives in Washington discloses that a part of the Lebanese intelligence support the antis because of their conviction that a departing Assad will be in their country’s interest. He also requests the international community to intervene and stand by the Syrian people… He rather prophesies the targets…”Twenty missiles at twenty intelligence buildings in Syria, the regime would collapse.” On the margin, it is advisable never to bet on the same horse that March 14 bets on, because July 2006 War and the tea serving in Marj Ouyoun is the best evidence.

Only in Syria…
The Syrian state and the regime have passed reformation bills some of which for instance is the Bill for Parties, and the Bill for Media, the Bill for Elections, and the Bill for Local Governances. They also passed more than one general pardon in addition to many other reformations at a fast pace towards democracy. What a ridiculous fate this regime has when other regimes invite President Assad to listen to his people and they request freedom and democracy of him; they still reached the point of asking him to step down and conduct early elections of which they themselves never comprehend anything. Still they request constitution amendments while if any person in their countries utters the word “constitution,” he is going to be jailed with an accusation of heresy.

Only in Syria, one can buy one liter of diesel oil for US 30$ while its production cost is US 80$. More of this, who can buy a schoolbook for US 30$ when its production cost is US 90$? Still, only in Syria, one can get any hospitalization free even if a surgery is needed. Yes, only in Syria, income tax is 5% with an exclusion of those with a low basic. Only in Syria, one can have his children join schooling from primary grades all the way through university graduation at a cost equivalent for one-year tuition fees at one of the universities in neighboring countries.

Only in Syria, foreign debts on the state treasury are 0%. Only in Syria, there has been a shift from the socialist economy system to the free market system, yet still the Syrian Pound rate against other currencies was constant and steady. Only in Syria, there are more than one million Palestinians with absolute citizenship privileges equal to the native Syrian citizens with no discrimination whatsoever. Only in Syria, two million Iraqis took Syria as refuge during the invasion, yet none of them resided in a refugee’s tent. Only in Syria, one can walk into a restaurant and find Mr. President along with the First Lady sitting at a table adjacent to yours. Finally yet importantly, only in Syria, one can find Shiites married to Alawites whose mothers are Sunnis with Christian brothers-in-law and Kurdish aunts and so forth. Only in Syria!

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:32 am

 

1131. sheila said:

Dear #1108. Muhammad,
I agree with everything you said and want to thank you for it, except for the harsh criticism of Alex/ Camille. Moderating SC is like walking in a mine field. I have my own reservations about Alex/ Camille, but I know for a fact that very few of us can do a better job.

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:40 am

 

1132. Tara said:

zoo,

kindly stop spreading “rediculous” propaganda. The expression “Alawites to coffins…Christians to Beirut,” was invented by the regime and its propagandists to feed into a sectarian strife. There was never proof of it.

Aboud,

You are irreplaceable and indispensable.

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:48 am

 

1133. Husam said:

Sheila:

You said: “I have my own reservations about Alex/ Camille, but I know for a fact that very few of us can do a better job.”

So true, but one should not be a coward and hide behind his own skin while protraying himself as fair game. Especially now, Syrians from all walks of life are fed up with double standard, one idealogy and family-for-life-idol. Enough already. To accept Alex as moderator because there is no other is like to accept our beloved Bashar because there is none other. Dig?

We are the checks and balances!

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:51 am

 

1134. Haytham Khoury said:

غليون: منفتحون على جميع من يلتزم بسلمية الثورة
المعارضة تعلن تشكيل المجلس الوطني السوري لـ”إسقاط نظام الأسد”

http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2011/10/02/169799.html

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:53 am

 

1135. Haytham Khoury said:

My new article in Arabic with the title “The Syrian Opposition and the Political Sterility”.

المعارضة السورية و العقم السياسي

http://haytham-khoury3.blogspot.com/

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October 2nd, 2011, 9:57 am

 

1136. Husam said:

Majedkhaldon:

You, being here for a while, of all people know what I am talking about. Thanks for your support for the truths.

Observer:

You too know the B.S. and that all Syrians are tired of being marginalized just for speaking out about this extremely blasphemous platform.

Syrian Hamster:

They call the shots, right on dude. They tell us how to think, what can be said, what labels to use, etc… Hehehe

Ok, now here is one trivial question: How many times have I (you know, the guy that can’t even seem to keep his routine prayers) being called an Islamist on SC?

The winner gets 77 Syrian virgins on a lollipop.

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:03 am

 

1137. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

Scales of Displeasure

A man is not totally pleased
Could he be a half and half?
We know he loves the chief
Does he also hate the staff?
And when the forest is burning
Will he save the poor Giraffe?

The man is not totally pleased with insurrection
He could be ninety and ten
He seeks a civilized discourse with the gangsters’ protection
Much like a bunch of wise old men
For the dead nor a prayer or even reflection
But a protest of anyone maligning a hen
And now the wretched get no rejection
But the righteously angry are struck with a pen

A man is not totally pleased
Could he be a half and half?
We know he loves the chief
Does he also hate the staff?
And when the forest is burning
Will he save the poor Giraffe?

The man is not totally pleased with the find
He could be eighty and twenty
For the gangsters have been all the more too kind
And the Don has offered a plenty
But the people remain too stubborn, and to him are too blind
And the poor against the rich, an unfair ante
And when the downtrodden dared and opined
Their sentiments, unsurprisingly, offend the cognoscenti*

A man is not totally pleased
Could he be a half and half?
We know he loves the chief
Does he also hate the staff?
And when the forest is burning
Will he save the poor Giraffe?

The man is not totally pleased with the thing
He could be seventy and five times six
Mistrustful of the so-called Arabian spring
Of its dissonant chants and the people in the mix
Are the tanks invisible and stealthy are the fixed-wing?
Or are the dismembered merely flies and tics?

The man is not totally pleased with the matter
He could be sixty and forty
I guess not, for he has been hearing the chatter
His friends are not that much sporty
Too much displeasure and the vase….. will shatter

A man is not totally pleased
Could he be a half and half?
We know he loves the chief
Does he also hate the staff?
And when the forest is burning
Will he save the poor Giraffe?

——————————–
*cognoscenti: noun, an expert able to appreciate a field; especially in the fine arts

And then I broke the scale

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:03 am

 

1138. some guy no longer in damascus said:

zoo, your last post was devoid of all knowledge and complete utter bull****

“SYRIA- Ridiculously, the “Syrian” uprising is not sectarian, but still they hold up slogans such as “Alawites to coffins…Christians to Beirut,” “Muslims and Christians tread on Alawites…” and “Out loud we say, not one Alawite we want to see,” or “O! Alawite, O! Pagan! We will open a grave for you!”… but they say their uprising is not sectarian!”
never seen such a demonstration anywhere, not on youtube or tv, and even if there was it would be a totally isolated incident, far from reality. when i demonstrated in midan, we said : wa7ed, wa7ed, wa7ed il sha3b il souri wa7ed.

“Preposterously, their “revolution” is national and not linked to any foreign conspiring party, yet one will hear them say slogans such as, “O! Israel! We sacrifice our Souls and Blood for you!” or “Bandar, Bandar, Hariri …, We Want Al-Jazeera,” and more slogans like, “No Iran or Hezbollah, We Want One That Fears God!” Are not those the ones who tweet and call out for the American intervention and involvement on their so-called “uprising”?”

same thing, not a single demosntration was held in israels honor, and when i demonstrated in midan we chanted: bashar is the zionist that kills syrians. thats our anti-israeli credentials for you.

“Idiotically, they claim their “uprising” is peaceful, yet their “sheikhs” have declared “Jihad” against their Syrian army and their internal security forces and against whoever disagrees with them. Are not they the ones who slaughtered the officers and the privates along with their families, maimed, and mutilated the corpses in application for their sectarian slogans? Are not they who snipe their own citizens from the tops of the minarets using American sniper rifles?”
at first it was truly peaceful, and we chanted for basic rights like freedom( of expression, demonstration, opinion, etc…) but the regime responded in the worst manner, and hell no! we are not going to be sitting ducks.

How could the uprising be a “revolution” in Syria while it is considered “a security disorder” in Bahrain that calls for the Arab Peninsula forces and its shield intervention?
The fag ends of the blaspheming groups have offered the grace of Heaven when they disclosed a wicked conspiracy against Syria. It became clear when they instrumentally chose violence, slaughtering, devastating property, and they used the sectarian style to address other citizens, a step which made Syria retrieve its vitality and power and encounter that conspiracy with absolute forcefulness.
dont blame the demonstrators for that. blame the media….even the regime’s media( that didnt report the bahraini revolution,and mubaraks trial yet did report the qatari revolution.)

Only in Syria…
Certain Arabian and foreign satellite televisions spur and lie and distort facts in the ugliest manner one could imagine based on “Lie and lie till people believe you.” Miracles occur on those so-called “professional” satellite televisions. Eye witnessing must have the final say, yet one finds observers here and observers there, ―none of them located in Syria― provide you with the latest casualties for confrontations in Syria for any day! However, they never mention any internal security or military martyrs whose coffins we see every day in the Syrian media.
please refer to the following video regarding the syrian medias credibility:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MelxzZwW5kQ

“The observers do not possess any information about the slaughtering of the security, and if they do, they classify that under “The regime killed them because they refused the orders to fire at the civilians.” It seems that those satellite TV’s have taught viewers for years to scrutinize and to double check on the sources of news; as a result, those viewers now have passed the test while the deceivers have failed.”
maybe if the regime allowed true access to the foreign news agencies, we would know whats going on.

Only about Syria, one can view an analysis by “a prominent Arab thinker” on a prominent Arab satellite TV contradicting himself tens of times and subsequently submits to the disclosed policies of that satellite TV. The interviewer asks “the Arab thinker” about the fears rising from the scenario of Hama, and he says it is impossible in the presence of media stations and high technical instruments … Naturally, that answer did not appeal to the lady interviewing him and she proceeds to irritatedly say, “But Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned of a new Hama.” At last, that “thinker” realizes her message and proceeds saying,” Yes, the mentality that was present in Hama is still there and still more, there are more killings than those that happened in Hama…”
il let taleb ibrahim do the talking for you:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shZalNx7VmU

“The same goading channels assure the demonstrating massive marches heading for both Abbasid and Omayyad Squares in Damascus. Simultaneously, you change the channel to the live broadcasting the Syrian satellite TV airing from the same two squares and the roads leading to them both, and they prove that the situation there is very normal. However, the goading channels insist on their lying, because if they back up, they are going to speed up their bankruptcy before their viewers.”
once again, they shouldnt take accountability, the regime should allow them in, furthermore i’ve demonstrated in midan only to return home and listen to syrian state tv deny any demonstrations in midan

“Only in Syria…
The Syrian state and the regime have passed reformation bills some of which for instance is the Bill for Parties, and the Bill for Media, the Bill for Elections, and the Bill for Local Governances. They also passed more than one general pardon in addition to many other reformations at a fast pace towards democracy. What a ridiculous fate this regime has when other regimes invite President Assad to listen to his people and they request freedom and democracy of him; they still reached the point of asking him to step down and conduct early elections of which they themselves never comprehend anything. Still they request constitution amendments while if any person in their countries utters the word “constitution,” he is going to be jailed with an accusation of heresy.”
bashar al assad to wall street journal sometime around last january:
” doing reforms in these times would be reactions and not actions”

“Only in Syria, one can buy one liter of diesel oil for US 30$ while its production cost is US 80$. More of this, who can buy a schoolbook for US 30$ when its production cost is US 90$? Still, only in Syria, one can get any hospitalization free even if a surgery is needed. Yes, only in Syria, income tax is 5% with an exclusion of those with a low basic. Only in Syria, one can have his children join schooling from primary grades all the way through university graduation at a cost equivalent for one-year tuition fees at one of the universities in neighboring countries.”
you really need to take econ 101, these prices dont matter! what matters is purchasing power! the average american works around 10-12 minutes to get a big mac, the average syrian worker has to put much more time into it.

“Only in Syria, foreign debts on the state treasury are 0%. Only in Syria, there has been a shift from the socialist economy system to the free market system, yet still the Syrian Pound rate against other currencies was constant and steady. Only in Syria, there are more than one million Palestinians with absolute citizenship privileges equal to the native Syrian citizens with no discrimination whatsoever. Only in Syria, two million Iraqis took Syria as refuge during the invasion, yet none of them resided in a refugee’s tent. Only in Syria, one can walk into a restaurant and find Mr. President along with the First Lady sitting at a table adjacent to yours. Finally yet importantly, only in Syria, one can find Shiites married to Alawites whose mothers are Sunnis with Christian brothers-in-law and Kurdish aunts and so forth. Only in Syria!”
this is the cherry on top of your sundae
you have to thank the Syrian people for these accomplishments and not besho. our unity was like that before besho and we’ll maintain it after besho. the restaurant part demonstrates your ignorance of Syria, where a sizable chunk of the population make less than 250$ a month.

ps: theres so much BS in that article i dont have the time to refute now, but i assure you it is far from reality.

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:19 am

 

1139. Tara said:

Dear Husam

The hatred you come across reading the comment section is so obvious and honestly shocking.

Let haters boil in their hatred. The Syrian people will ultimately prevail.

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:21 am

 

1140. zoo said:

Tara

Are you trying to silence me? Because I am Iranian, or Shia, or Alawite, Left-wing, Kurd or just because I show different point of view to your petit-bourgeois, fake-moderate-islamist and sterile revolutiannary views and your obvious contempt for the ‘peasants’ and the ‘uneducated’.

I will post what I want and when I want.

So if you don’t like it, go and join your dear preacher Abboud in the pool that he has prepared to boil the soldiers.

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:24 am

 

1141. Revlon said:

Dear Husam,

“5) Alex is wrong about your IP address revealing just the city you live in… your neighbourhood is revealed too. Anyone who knows a bit about Google analytics or software like Clicktale can tell you that everything from your browser screen resolution down to your language of choice, connection speed, web provider and much more. Clicktale goes into onsite real-time behavioural metrics. This measures user behaviour, heat maps, form analytics and can detect much more about the user. These are basic tools. And of course, your IP address can be hacked and your identity can be known as easy as 1-2-3. As Alex stated: there are 5 or 6 people who have access to your IP Address. The “programmer” who ever that is, has capabilities beyond the comprehension of most users here. The problem is there is no accountability, no privacy policy and weak governance. But hey, when SC was shut down you all whined till you were blue.
6) Ah yes…if you don’t like it here, then leave”

Thank you very much for your clarifications.
Your statements on the significance of IP address are relevant to the safety of SC bloggers and are at variance with those provided earlier by Alex.

I would like to ask Alex and all of those interested this: Is privacy statement required in Blogs by federal laws in the US?

I have just googled the question and came up with “Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act” (Canada)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personal_Information_Protection_and_Electronic_Documents_Act
……..The law requires organizations to
• obtain consent when they collect, use or disclose their personal information;
• supply an individual with a product or a service even if they refuse consent for the collection, use or disclosure of your personal information unless that information is essential to the transaction;
• collect information by fair and lawful means; and
• have personal information policies that are clear, understandable and readily available.

The last item clearly requires the presence of personal information policy Alex!

Could u comment please!

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:27 am

 

1142. Mango said:

Chaos and revolutions — the dollar weapon

In the modern world any more does not remain anything reliable. Exchange rates fluctuate, crises shake economy. A little it is «a revolutionary wave» and chaos threaten to absorb the whole continents. And so already was in the history of mankind. The first and Second world wars have reversed the world. Adolf Hitler has made dollar world reserve currency. Today’s events are started for preservation of an existing order of things. New, «collective Hitler» urged to keep a dominating role of the American currency, having destabilized thus economy and political system. Everywhere, except the USA and Great Britain.« Darling cozy »the West what we knew it, comes to an end. The new round of struggle for world supremacy has before our eyes begun. Ahead at all inhabitants of a planet — refusal of a high standard of living, tolerance, human rights and other”inventions”which have helped the USA with struggle against Soviet Union. Forthcoming struggle will be cruel. The period of chaos and revolutions never came to an end with the world. After revolutions wars always begin. In the history our country revolution was noted by millions victims. Wish repetition of Russian tragedy can either the silly person, or the traitor.
You will find answers to questions in the book:
Whence on roofs of the Arabian cities there were «unknown snipers»?
Why the NATO has untied aggression against Libya?
For what the resource of Vikiliks has been created?
Whether Nikolay II renounced a throne?
Who and what for kills legal experts in Russia?
Why “not consent” persistently want to break the Constitution of Russia?
What Russian policy in coming circumstances should be?
The dollar does not want to die. Its owners wish and to correct further the world. Rescue dollar can only operated chaos and revolutions. And after them — war …
http://nstarikov.ru/new/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/45900845.jpg

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:34 am

 

1143. zoo said:

Some guy no longer in Damascus

Thanks for commenting in this post graciously. I know it is controversial but it reflects an emotional view from a journalist in Al Manar, not necessarily mine.
It also show that the truth has many facets and it is enriching to look at all the perspective and not be blinded by either.

If you qualify this as B…, I would say that many of the western articles ( NYT, the ridiculous Pepperdine poll) fit in the same category, yet no one dare say it because of that colonial-inherited idea that the West knows better.

Because of the proliferation of ‘smart’ articles the western medias with biased view, it is healthy to read local articles too.

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:37 am

 

1144. zoo said:

Revlon

Tha’ts what you meant by Personal Policy? I found that but I am sure there are many similar examples.

Example of a Comment section policy (The Long War Journal)

COMMENTS POLICY (Please Read)

The comments section is intended to provide a forum to discuss and debate current posts. The Long War Journal makes no warranty to the accuracy of readers’ comments, nor do we condone or affirm the opinions of reader-based comments. Discuss the issue at hand and do not go off topic. The comments section is not a place for partisan debates. Please be courteous to your fellow commenters. Personal attacks on the editors, authors, or readers of The Long War Journal sites will not be permitted. Please refer to current and former elected officials and public leaders respectfully. Offensive language, cursing (including replacing letters with characters), racial or ethnic slurs, and sexist remarks will not be tolerated. In the interest of keeping the comments section readable, please post a link to any articles, and excerpt the portions of the article that make your points. Any comments with the full article will be edited.

Commenters will be required to leave an e-mail address and are encouraged to submit their website or URL also. E-mail addresses will not be published to the site; however, if it is determined that it is a false address, the comment will be removed.

The Long War Journal reserves the right to edit, delete, or decline to publish any comments that violate this policy, and prevent any repeat offender from commenting.

If you have any questions on the comments policy or problems with the site,

Read more: http://www.longwarjournal.org/threat-matrix/archives/2011/09/syria_update_the_free_syrian_a.php#ixzz1ZZnCS8Nm

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:45 am

 

1145. jna said:

When the shoe is on the other foot. Guess who below (style is distinct).

“Hehe, keep that up, I love seeing the menhebaks keeping their perfect score for getting themselves banned (although it is Sunday, the moderator might take a while)”
http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11995&cp=all#comment-273952

“@270 and you wonder why you were banned? People are trying to explain to you why you are being a paranoid little menhebak, and you insult them. Tsk tsk. Heck, if I had the power to censor you, I’d do so for that rude and foul mouthed post of yours. You see, your whole manufactured grievance is just a way for you to get back at Landis, for the ban you were slapped with. Instead of taking responsibility for your actions, you spam this forum with the most ridiculous and outrageous accusations, all so you can tell yourself that you weren’t banned for doing anything wrong. No, it was all a conspiracy.Dude, do you see conspiracies in your cereal?”
http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11981&cp=all#comment-273338

“Aweeee. Poor little Persian has his feelings hurt that most of the menhebaks have turned tail and fled this forum, or else gotten themselves banned LOL!”
http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11981&cp=all#comment-273049

“… Poor #156, getting banned for a comment no one had time to see hehehehe. I so hope it was about me :)” …
http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11210&cp=all#comment-265571

“Of all the people who have been banned from this website‭, ‬all of them have been menhebaks‭. ‬Says alot”
http://www.joshualandis.com/blog/?p=11200&cp=all#comment-265777

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October 2nd, 2011, 10:55 am

 

1146. Tara said:

Zoo

I am sorry if I hurt your feeling. I did not think that you are that “delicate” to feel that I am trying to silence you. I was expressing my opinion in regard to the article you posted. I have many times asked for proof of the statement “Alawites to coffins…Christians to Beirut”… and got none.

A brilliant person like yourself does not need to restore to “..your petit-bourgeois, fake-moderate-islamist” and “So if you don’t like it, go and join…” just to score a point. Do you really believe that I am a fake moderate Islamist and wouuld like to silence you because you are iraniam, shiaa, alawi or whatever?

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October 2nd, 2011, 11:08 am

 

1147. some guy no longer in damascus said:

a convoy of shabeeha passing in umaweyeen square, i think theyre heading to the kafer suseh mukhbarat area.
this is what we have to deal with, people!

focus on the background, the green and white buses are the buses used to transport the “grey” shabeeha
grey shabeeha”: a term i created for the security service that wear civilian clothes and attack protesters or any dissent. you can blame them for the attacks on ali ferzat, malek jandalis parents and the ambassadors, furthermore they can be used to drown out any opposition near journalists. the regime denies responsibility for them and sometimes claims theyre the “armed elements” ( like the attack on ali ferzat)

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October 2nd, 2011, 11:21 am

 

1148. Muhammad said:

Husam

Thanks for the advice. Personally I’m openly anti-regime now and I know for a fact I’m wanted. I don’t really care if I get an additional paper in my file.

Shiela

I’m open to change my mind. I did not base my opinion of Alex on anything but his behavior and the links he has given – admittedly I did not spend an awful lot of time checking them.

The council announced today is an important development. We now have a national platform that include the whole Syrian spectrum. If the regime is truly interested in a democratic transfer of power (I’m sure it isn’t) then here is the side they need to negotiate with. If there are some fake secularist whinging about how this revolution is a salafi conspiracy then here is a council that have a secular in it’s leadership and they can support it and play the democratic game. I’m sure they will however be exposed for the little nasty sectarians they really are. The council needs to have a boost of international support and I’m sure a lot of people who are supporting the regime due to lack of other options will start switching sides soon.

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October 2nd, 2011, 11:24 am

 

1149. Revlon said:

The Syrian Revolution 2011 الثورة السورية ضد بشار الاسد
نشطاء سوريّون يطلقون مبادرة
“أنا مواطن سوري والمجلس الوطني السوري يمثلني”
SyriaNC#
الآن في تويتر

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October 2nd, 2011, 11:24 am

 

1150. Mina said:

Revlon,
You use FB and you care about privacy? Don’t you know there are trials on the way because FB continues to collect your personal datas even after you log out? Come on… there is no such thing as privacy on the internet, full point.

By the way, what did he disclose??? That Aboud is not in Syria contrarily to what he’s been claiming for 6 months? (since he can use 2 IP addresses, that means that he is not using a proxy anonymizer, as any concerned person in Homs writing what he writes would?)

A new sport is going to emerge in Lybia:
http://www.lemonde.fr/libye/article/2011/10/02/plus-de-10-000-missiles-sol-air-perdus-en-libye-selon-l-otan_1581172_1496980.html#ens_id=1481986

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October 2nd, 2011, 11:32 am

 

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