The Arab Spring & the decay of secular state in Syria

The Arab Spring & the decay of secular state in Syria

By Morpheus, a Damascus based architect
For Syria Comment – posted by Camille

Since its beginning, the Arab Spring phenomenon dominated the waves of local & international media and focused discussions about the current state of affairs in the Arab world on two major principles; freedom & regime change. However, this debate over these principles in Syria overshadowed the systematic destruction of secular state using vague political terms, conflicting regime change with state destruction and applying a divisive discourse that can only lead to separation instead of integration.

Syria today is suffering mainly from the absence of a “silent majority” from its political debates. Currently, the representation of the Syrian population is reduced to ineffective pro-government speakers and external chaotic opposition mostly represented by ambiguous characters with little substance to offer. This, of course, comes as no surprise in a country where true politics disappeared under one party ruling for four decades. However, this growing opposition abroad presents another concern as it aims to de-root all aspects of modern governing established in the country since its independence. An important aspect of the Syrian State was its secular face, rarely exposed and discussed but very evident and present to prudent observers. Since its early days, the Syrian state did not hide its indifference to religion and all its national figures agreed amongst themselves upon this unspoken truth. Their mixture was unique and effective. Muslims & Christians as well as Arabs & non Arabs all contributed to the construction of a modern state. The danger, nowadays, threatens the solid beliefs of the founding fathers, if I may use this expression, by debating the unspoken truth, highlighting ethnic & religious discrepancies and pushing the interest of one group to the detriment of national interest. Thus, the vague political terms used and consumed by media debates like freedom and change can only be used to describe and specify a general state of thinking without actual detailing of what it entails if put to the test in everyday governance. It is important to highlight as well that a serious attempt for change started years ago on all different levels of government to open up the discourse and diagnose the requested modifications to a closed system. This is by no means a gift from the regime but a committed effort from the “Silent Majority”.

This process of change from within was not only triggered by political needs but by economic, cultural and social necessities. Syria today is very different from the state it was in 1963 when the ruling party took power. The Syrian population growth rate is one of the highest in the world. Exposure to free market policies changed economic behavior fundamentally. Avant-gardists co-exist with traditionalists in every domain. More than ever, the need for change is inevitable. Even people in the highest echelons of power knew it was coming. This, nevertheless, was meant to improve the outcome of the state not to dismantle it. Thus, the “Silent Majority” was taken aback by the unexplainable uprising in most Syrian cities. It was evident that occurring changes were much less than expected. The outcome of it was a strange one; on one hand the government took the steering wheel and started a fast track process of introducing numerous laws & regulations to convince everyone it was doing its due diligence while the opposition fought back by stripping the government of its right to expedite the process of change. In reality, the former excluded the active majority from political reform in a way, while the latter refused the whole concept of reform all together leaving no room for discussion and taking the matter to the streets and the masses. Nothing is far more dangerous than leaving crucial decisions with impact for years to come to angry protestors and ineffective bodies of governance. This condition is threatening the collective belief in the Syrian state capability of existence and survival. A regime change is needed in a manner that is not threatening to integration and unity of national institutions. This type of change has to be inclusive not exclusive and based on discourse not violence and erratic attempts. The issues at stake are far more divisive than immediate gains. Furthermore, it is imperative to keep in mind that the structure of current institutions is not a result of the regime in power. Some of these institutions are older than the Syrian Republic itself. Consequently, a consensus has to be reached at large before diving into any productive restructuring.

Increasingly so, the language used by regime opponents is sending shock waves through the nation’s nerve system. Since the independence, the political views differed from one another by association to the socialist approach to governance or to the capitalist approach. They all agreed on national unity and diversity but debated how to solve social & economic affairs. Today, the political scene drafts a totally different landscape focusing on ethnic, religious and social divisions. This comes as a reflection of modern politics in the Middle East as a whole where politics no longer relate to progressive thinking but to backward thinking and the political arena is divided between pragmatists and Islamists. A consequence of the end of the Cold War era, the Middle East failed to produce any inspiring political thinking for decades and fall hostage to fundamentalists. Syria is no exception. In the 80’s the government responded with tremendous force to the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood. Nevertheless, the past three decades witnessed a softer approach. Religious diversity was celebrated widely in the country and all Syrians felt a sense of reassurance in the ability to express religious beliefs. But how good is too good? Today, when secular state is decided to be more inclusive it is faced with violent disapproval and denial of its right to lead based on sectarian thinking. This is not only increasing tension between government & protestors but also is extending a greater feeling of mistrust amongst different sects in society. All of a sudden, the debate shifted from replacing old socialism with more progressive socially conscious capitalism to replacing army boots with Islamic turbans.

In result, it is astonishing how the “Silent Majority” failed so far to seize its right to preserve the important achievements of the Syrian state since its birth in 1947 and to enter the political debate strongly and effectively using peaceful means and civic action. The end as described by protestors is aimed towards freedom. But it is far more important to exercise a civil and united discourse in order to agree on what type of system we are seeking to protect and cherish common freedoms. Also, it is crucial not to lose sight of what was achieved so far regardless of whether it was done incorrectly. To have something to work with and improve is far better than to turn the page and start from scratch especially in a time where the clock is ticking away…

Damascus, Oct 8th, 2011


Posted by Alex.

Comments (840)

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801. newfolder said:

leaked footage from inside the tanks that shelled the Osman Mosque in Dier Ezzour

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October 18th, 2011, 11:12 am


802. Revlon said:

Yousef AlMawas was another child to fall victim to a sniper bullet in the head in Kernaz, Hama Goverorate.

Those children and other civilians have been victims of the regime’s violence, the SNC’s sluggishness and reluctance to muster real protection to civilians on the ground, and the irrelvence of the ongoing human loss to the national interests of those who vetoed the SNC resolution.

شهيد الطفوله يوسف المواس من كرناز-حماه 17-10 – سوريا – أموي

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October 18th, 2011, 11:28 am


803. Tara said:

“If Syria rejects this initiative, the case will be out of control,” What does that mean? setting the stage up for a more drastic measure by the UNSC and AL green light?

BAGHDAD / Aswat al-Iraq: Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshiar Zebari said that Arab foreign ministers gave Damascus a chance to solve the crisis, but it was rejected as an intervention of internal affairs.

In a press statement to al-Sharq al-Awsat daily, issued today, Zebari confirmed that the Arab countries reject imposing sanctions, foreign intervention and freezing Syrian membership in the Arab League.

“If Syria rejects this initiative, the case will be out of control,” he added.

Zebari confirmed the visit of Arab League Secretary General to Baghdad to discuss matters related to the coming Arab Summit due in Iraq next year.

He confirmed that Iraqi intervention with Iran, on the attempt of assassinating Saudi ambassador to Washington, was a failure due to the stern U.S.
stand against Iran.

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October 18th, 2011, 11:51 am


804. Uzair8 said:

The transcript from the video posted in

The Sheikh calls out especially to Damascus where he used to teach.

Some select quotes:

‘The principle job of the ruler is to protect religion, lives, honour and people’s property. That is not happening. Who is going to protect people’s honour? Who is going to defend people in their homes? Ironically: the guardian is the thief. Police, who are supposed to protect people. The army, who must defend people, are the ones who are killing people in their homes. Should we not condemn this and call for a change?’

‘Everyone must go out and protest and shout “peacefully, peacefully, this protest is peaceful.” We do not allow killing, assassinations, violence, or anarchy. Rather, we call on people to boldly and bravely speak words of truth.’

‘Where are you people of Damascus? If you all went out to the streets, the regime would collapse in days and a system of truth and justice would be established. Some say, “We go out, we get killed.” This is because only a few individuals go out. If hundreds of thousands of people occupied the various squares of Damascus then what would the army do? Kill a hundred thousand? They dare not do it.’

‘Brothers! People of Damascus! It is high time we went out for the sake of Allah. It is high time we filled the streets and public squares. Let us all get out: young and old, men and women, children and elders. All must go out and say no to killing. No to bloodshed. No to besieging cities. No to killing innocents. No to looting properties. No to violating the honour of women. No to humiliating people. And no to oppression. We say yes to justice. Yes to freedom that is based on respecting the rights of others. Yes to protecting lives. Yes to protecting minorities rights. Yes to law and order in streets and cities but not to a rogue state based on anarchy and sabotage like this regime. This regime sabotages, causes chaos, and steals. We must say no to this mess.’

‘The elders of Damascus remember and the younger generations have heard how Damascus was in the fifties. It was on the way to being a great country like Japan, in economy, industry, trade, power, virtue and morals, civilization and advancement. We must, with permission of Allah, bring Syria back to how it was before.’

The full transcript:

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October 18th, 2011, 12:09 pm


805. zoo said:

Syrian government, opposition, reject Arab League talks plan
Damascus: We can solve problems internally. Opposition: 15-day deadline is a licence to kill
Dubai: Both the Syrian government and the opposition Monday rejected the Arab League proposal for a dialogue, but on different grounds.

While Damascus said any discussion with the opposition should take place in Syria, the opposition felt the League’s 15-day ultimatum was ‘just a licence to kill more people”.

Syria also said that it will continue the reforms under the leadership of Bashar Al Assad and that it can solve its problems internally.

More time to kill

Article continues below

However, Dr Basma Kadmani, spokeswoman for the Syrian National Council (SNC), the main opposition group in exile, told Gulf News the League did not consult them about the proposal and the 15-day ultimatum will give the regime time to kill more people.

“Syrians have been killed every day for seven months. The League should have sent a strong message to the regime by suspending its membership. It should have dealt with the Al Assad regime the same way as with Libya. Syrian civilians should not have been left alone to face the regime’s military machine,” she said.

Reports said 14 people were killed on Sunday.

Tweeting from hiding

Another opposition figure, Suhair Al Atassi, who went into hiding after her release from prison during the first month of the uprising, tweeted: “We said it from the day the first martyr fell: No dialogue with the killers. The killers will be put on trial by the free Syrian people.”

The League meeting in Cairo decided to form a four-member ministerial committee comprising Algeria, Sudan, Oman and headed by Qatar to visit Syria and to launch negotiations in Cairo between the opposition and the government.

In a communique sent to Gulf News, the SNC urged the League’s member states to suspend Syria’s membership in the organisation, protect civilians and recognise the council as the legitimate representative of the people till the fall of the regime, which it said will come soon at the hands of the people and with the support of Arabs and the international community.

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October 18th, 2011, 12:17 pm


806. Dale Andersen said:

Memo To: ZOO

RE: “…Given the short window of opportunity in Iraq, the next few weeks will be critical to U.S. efforts to pressure Iran…”

Not critical at all. Let the USA leave. And never mind about the Iranians. After six months, everybody will be so sick of them and their suffocating superiority attitude that anything “Western” will be like a breath of fresh air.

Let the Iranians be Iranian and stand back and let them work the room. They’ll make New Yorkers seem tame by comparison.

By the way, is Muqtadā al-Ṣadr still hiding his fat, dreary ass in Iran?

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October 18th, 2011, 12:27 pm


807. Tara said:

Bronco @ 743

They say love is blind! wishful interpretation of all events in favor of the Syrian regime? From the AL, to Qatar, to Turkey to Egypt: you are interpreting all stands to be infavor of Bashar!… I understand.. Tara is also very intense and love things/people BLINDLY at times. Can we go to a rehabilitation class for that?

“This meeting showed a large support for Syria from Arab countries, especially from the heavy-weight Egypt”

read this about Egypt:

However, the diplomat said, a significant bloc of countries was opposed to suspension, including Sudan, Algeria, Lebanon and Yemen, whose leader is also facing a serious uprising. According to Arab League diplomats, Mideast heavyweight Egypt did not indicate which side it is on.

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October 18th, 2011, 12:31 pm


808. Uzair8 said:

“Are the people of chivalry and honour dead? People of Damascus were never like this. Did chocolate bring about a new generation of people or is it fastfood which produced this new generation of people? Are we the generation of chocolate and chewing gum? May Allah protect us. We are a generation of dignity and chivalry. We are a generation of bravery and honour. Which struggle has higher honour than speaking the truth?”

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October 18th, 2011, 12:33 pm


809. Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Mina@779:

I agree with all what you said. I wanted to insist that they do not have weapons in the usual sens (arms).

Of course, they are human right activist. They knew how to manipulate the media and the international opinion. However, this is not legally illegal and it can’t by any means be compared with the regime’s mafia methods.

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October 18th, 2011, 12:52 pm


810. Majed Khaldoun said:

The problem we have is that the Alawi community number is over 1.5 million, any military solution means over 2 million dead among Sunni and Alawite,I believe we need to get another Alawi officer to lead a change,we need to make it clear that we are against Bashar and not against the Alawite sect.If this is not possible we should expect some part of Syria to split away and secede,this seems very possible,this must be done soon,within a month.
I dont think that the christians are major factor,they are less than a million,many of them do not support Assad,and they should not worry about different regime.secession will split the army,since the majority of the Alawite members are high ranking and they can not fight without the lower ranking soldiers,it is Assad to blame for such secession,since he is not honest about reform.

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October 18th, 2011, 12:55 pm


811. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

“………….The League meeting in Cairo decided to form a four-member ministerial committee comprising Algeria, Sudan, Oman and headed by Qatar to visit Syria……..”

LOL, some impeccable credentials these countries maintains, talk about a bucket of $^^%@^%@$#@$#

I hope Assad will not turn Syria into any one of them.

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October 18th, 2011, 1:35 pm


812. ann said:

Amid BRICS’ rise and ‘Arab Spring’, a new global order forms

With American unilateralism ebbing, Western nations and the rising BRICS countries are still finding their way to a new geopolitical balance – and Arab Spring nations like Syria are caught in the middle.

October 18, 2011

When a “new world order” was busy being born in 1989, and Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” played in a Berlin shorn of its cold-war wall, most of the world saw it as an epic and unforeseen liberation

Moscow was less enthusiastic – as was China, which cracked down brutally on students at Tiananmen Square in 1989.

That new world order has lost some of its sheen in the past two decades. But in 2011, some kind of epic liberation is again taking place – this time in the Middle East. The United States and Europe are once more looking on approvingly, for the most part. But again, Moscow has issues. So does Beijing, whose leaders view mass street protests with alarm.

Who are the BRICS?

Yet unlike in 1989, the US and Europe are now cash-strapped and described as “exhausted.” The rising powers of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (the BRICS) hold an estimated $4 trillion in foreign reserves and make up one-third of the world’s 6 billion population. And

they are posing new challenges to the world order shaped by the West.

From Europe, many see the BRICS as less interested in shared ideas of a multilateral world, and more inclined toward a nationalistic, multipolar world that emphasizes their own new strengths and interests. The result is fading authority and consensus on the world stage. The cold war “spheres of influence” between two powers are long gone. The new world order of American dominance has faded. But no clear leadership or rules have replaced this. New fights between trends of human rights and democracy – and sovereignty – have no rules as of yet.

The clash came into stark relief in a UN resolution on Syria this month. The resolution called on the regime of Bashar al-Assad to halt its “violent offensive at once.” That offensive has been in the news every day since March: The United Nations stated Oct. 14 that more than 3,000 protesters have been killed in the bloodiest episode of the Arab Spring.

The debate over sanctions against Syria

In early October, the West was setting the stage for putting great pressure on Mr. Assad. On Oct. 2, in Istanbul, Turkey, the Syrian National Council (SNC) debuted as the international opposition to Assad’s regime. The council includes Muslim Brotherhood figures, secular advocates, academics, and pro-US and pro-Turkey figures. Europe and the US back the SNC. Its launch in Turkey – which shares a border with Syria – with the blessing of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was significant.

In New York, meanwhile, European UN envoys worked overtime on a resolution against the Assad regime’s behavior. A mild final version didn’t contain the word “sanctions,” but it did call for access for aid groups, the exercise of “fundamental freedoms,” a peaceful political outcome, and other standard earmarks of what could be called civil society norms.

In Europe, the resolution was seen as both supporting the narrative of the Arab uprisings and standing up for deeply held European values. As a joint communiqué by France, Portugal, Germany, and Britain stated later, the resolution “contained nothing that any member of this Council should have felt the need to oppose….”

Yet opposed they were. On Oct. 4, both Russian and Chinese ambassadors raised their hands in a joint veto. Brazil and India abstained (along with South Africa and Lebanon), giving further heft to the veto. The BRICS spoke. US Ambassador Susan Rice and the American delegation were visibly furious and walked out. Ms. Rice said the next day that the vetoes ran against Syrian citizens’ “yearning for liberty and human rights.” Ambassador Gerard Araud of France said, “Our aim was – and remains – a simple one: to bring an end to the Syrian regime’s brutal crackdown against its own people, who are legitimately demanding the exercise of the most basic rights….”

Mr. Erdogan of Turkey, a state whose profile seems to exist halfway between the West and the BRICS, said on Oct. 5 that “Syria … should have received a warning…. The people of that country do not need to endure a merciless, shameless, tyrannical regime that bombs its own country from the sea. My heart remains with those struggling for freedom.” European media such as Spain’s El Pais opined that “the crude ‘no’ from Russia and China constitutes a serious setback for the West.”

Much of the discussion about the Russian and Chinese vetoes has stressed geopolitics: Russia and Syria have strong ties and robust arms sales. China tacitly supports Iran, and Tehran does not want Assad removed. Most significant is Moscow’s insistence that it was duped on UN Resolution 1973 on Libya, a humanitarian intervention that led eventually to the ousting of Muammar Qaddafi from Tripoli. Beijing argues for sovereignty come what may, analysts say, and was ready to veto the Libya resolution, but didn’t want to be left standing alone should the rebels of Benghazi be overrun in a bloodbath.

Who backs Syria’s Assad? Top 4 sources of support

Hence the Syria veto is considered “payback” for Libya, and comes with an explanation from Moscow that the West could have again used a UN resolution to gin up another intervention. (With NATO barely able to sustain an air war in Libya, and with more jets in the Syrian Air Force than in the French Air Force, some analysts find the idea less than serious.)

Rather, the “enabling of Assad,” as The New York Times described the joint veto, points more largely to a world order that appears makeshift and in drift.
‘The next order’

‘[The BRICS] are leery that the West is saying ‘welcome to the club’ – but the order we erected after World War II is here to stay,” says Charles Kupchan of the Council on Foreign Relations in Washington. “They say, ‘That order was your order. Now it is time to talk about what the next order will look like.’ That’s the rub – the difference between emerging and existing powers…. It is unfortunate this gamesmanship plays out over Syria.”

Indeed, in the heat of the UN moment on Syria, it’s easy to forget the double standards that many other countries see as part of the Western concept of order. The narrative of intervention from Kosovo – when NATO bombed the former Yugoslavia in 1999 – to Libya comes with shifting rationales and charges of US hubris. The US intervention in Iraq left a particularly bitter taste, with charges of US unilateralism. European states, too, reacted slowly to an Arab Spring in their former colonial states.

Almost on the same day that the US accused the BRICS of bad faith on Syria, for example, the Obama administration blocked a UN vote on Palestinian statehood. The White House had political considerations. But then the US voted against Palestinian membership in UNESCO, joined only by Latvia, Germany, and Romania (with 14 abstentions). Several BRICS voted in favor of it.

As for China and Russia, constraining US adventurism and Western power is “part of their foreign-policy identity,” says Ben Judah of the European Council on Foreign Relations in London. “The Chinese remain deeply unnerved by 1989 … and the Arab Spring. They wonder how a Middle East star performer like Tunisia, with a high growth rate, can be toppled by a popular protest.”

The joint veto may have eased deeper frictions between Russia and China, which usually drafts behind Moscow on the diplomatic scene. On Oct. 11, Vladimir Putin, poised to replace the more Western-leaning Dmitry Medvedev as Russia’s president, was in Beijing to sign a pending $7 billion natural gas deal with China, which has become the world’s No. 1 consumer of energy.

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October 18th, 2011, 1:45 pm


813. Uzair8 said:

Angryarabnews writes

Who is running Syria: the war within the ruling family

All is not well within the ruling family of Syria, it seems. Durayd Al-Asad (son of Rif`at, and first cousin of Bashshar who has stayed in Syria and is very close to Bashshar and has been supporting him politically) has suddenly broke with his cousins, the Makhlufs and with some advisers of Bashshar, like Bahjat Sulayman and his children. Durayd seems to be a good writer and uses language effectively.

It is not clear to what extent this fissure is politically significant but the outburst against the Makhluf can easily bring sympathy regardless of the name of Durayd. From what received from a reliable inside source, the Makhluf seem to have become more powerful than ever, politically and economically. They of course control Military Intelligence and may be behind the murder two weeks ago of a liaison officer with the Qataris who was about to leave for Jordan.

I am also receiving information that Russia is now running the show overall: just like it did in 1982 when Hafidh was ill and Rif`at tried to assert itself. I am told that you can see Russians all over Tartus: they are expanding their naval base there. Asaf Shawkat’s recent appointment was not significant and he is still marginalized and punished over issues I had mentioned before.

I also learned that the Makhlufs have sent a message to the Americans that they are

1) willing to expel the Russians from Syrai;
2) to revive and energize the Saudi peace plan and re-enter negotiations with Israel in return for a reduction of pressures on Syria.

The language that Durayd is using on Facebook is very strong and has specifics about corruption by key members of the ruling clan.

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October 18th, 2011, 1:46 pm


814. JAD said:

“لعيونك يا وطن سوريا الحبيبة
الوطن يحتاج لكافة ابناءه واطيافه لقيادة الحوار الوطني الداخلي بمعزل عن اي تدخل خارجي “” نحن نصنع الاصلاح بيدينا .”

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October 18th, 2011, 2:19 pm


815. majedkhaldoun said:

I have a feeling that the AL suggestion may turn to become a joke,Bashar will send very low ranking person,I think AL must insist on some one who has authority,from the top people.

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October 18th, 2011, 2:22 pm


816. JAD said:

البرتغال: مبادرة الجامعة العربية حول سورية “يمكن أن تكون بناءة”
(دي برس)

أعلن وزير الخارجية البرتغالي باول بورتاس الثلاثاء 18/10/2011، أن المبادرة العربية لحل الأزمة السورية “يمكن أن تكون بناءة”، موضحاً أن نظيره الجزائري مراد مدلسي أطلعه على تفاصيلها خلال محادثات جمعت الوزيرين الثلاثاء في الجزائر.

وقال الوزير البرتغالي في مؤتمر صحافي مع مراد مدلسي، حسبما ذكرت وكالة “فرانس برس”: “تبادلنا معلومات مهمة حول مقترحات الجامعة العربية عن الوضع في سورية وهو كما يدرك الجميع خطير”.

وتابع “أطلعني الوزير على هذه المبادرة التي يمكن ان تكون بناءة”، وتترأس البرتغال حاليا لجنة العقوبات في الأمم المتحدة وهي أيضاً عضو في مجلس الأمن الدولي

وقال مدلسي “تبادلنا المعلومات الحديثة حول الوضع في المنطقة العربية وخاصة في ليبيا وسورية”، مضيفاً “نتمنى أن يتجاوز الإخوان في سوريا الأزمة التي يمرون بها، لكن تجاوز الأزمة يعني بالدرجة الأولى دول الجوار ويعني بصفة أوسع الدول العربية بما أن سورية تنتمي إلى هذا الفضاء”.

وكان عقد في القاهرة الأحد الماضي اجتماع طارئ لوزراء الخارجية العرب دعا إلى عقد “مؤتمر حوار وطني” في القاهرة خلال 15 يوما يشارك فيه ممثلون عن الحكم السوري وعن المعارضة.

وجاء في البيان الختامي للاجتماع أن الوزراء العرب يدعون إلى “إجراء الاتصالات اللازمة مع الحكومة السورية وأطراف المعارضة بجميع أطيافها للبدء في عقد مؤتمر لحوار وطني شامل في مقر جامعة الدول العربية وتحت رعايتها خلال 15 يوما اعتبار من تاريخ صدور هذا القرار من اجل تحقيق التطلعات المشروعة للشعب السوري والتغيير المنشود”.

كما قرر الوزراء العرب تشكيل لجنة عربية وزارية برئاسة وزير خارجية قطر وعضوية وزراء خارجية كل من الجزائر والسودان وسلطنة عمان ومصر والأمين العام للجامعة العربية تكون مهمتها “الاتصال بالقيادة السورية لوقف كافة أعمال العنف والاقتتال ورفع كل المظاهر العسكرية وبدء الحوار بين الحكومة السورية وأطراف المعارضة لتنفيذ الإصلاحات السياسية التي تلبي طموحات الشعب السوري”.

وبعد اللقاء مع نطيره الجزائري التقى وزير خارجية البرتغال الرئيس عبد العزيز بوتفليقة، في ختام زيارة دامت يومين


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October 18th, 2011, 2:25 pm


817. JAD said:

واشنطن تنظر الى مبادرات الجامعة العربية بخصوص سورية دون تفاؤل يذكر

تقيم الولايات المتحدة افاق تطبيق المبادرات الاخيرة التي طرحتها الجامعة العربية مؤخرا بخصوص سورية، تقيمها بدون تفاؤل يذكر. اكد ذلك الناطق الرسمي باسم الخارجية الامريكية مارك تونر للصحفيين في 17 أكتوبر/تشرين الأول.

وقيم الدبلوماسي الامريكي عاليا جهود الجامعة العربية في تسوية الوضع في سورية وقال ان “الجامعة اقرت خلال اجتماعها الطارئ في القاهرة باستحداث لجنة هدفها اقامة حوار بين الحكومة السورية والمعارضة ودعت الجانبين الى كف المواجهة المسلحة والجلوس وراء مائدة المفاوضات خلال اسبوعين”.

واعرب الدبلوماسي الامريكي عن أسفه من ان “نظام الأسد لم يوافق حتى على هذه المبادرة المتواضعة. ولذلك لا يمكن ان نعبرعن تفاؤلنا بها”.

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October 18th, 2011, 2:25 pm


818. JAD said:

العربي يطلب من المعلم إيضاحات حول حقيقة الموقف السوري من قرار مجلس الجامعة

“الأهرام” عن مصادر دبلوماسية بالقاهرة: الرفض السوري للحل العربي يفتح الباب واسعا للتدخل الأجنبي
أجرى الأمين العام للجامعة العربية نبيل العربي يوم الاثنين اتصالات مع وزير الخارجية وليد المعلم طالبا منه الحصول على تفسيرات حول الرد السوري فيما يتعلق بطرح الوزراء العرب خلال اجتماعهم بمقر الجامعة العربية الداعى إلى عقد حوار بين الحكومة والمعارضة تحت رعايتها, في حين أعربت مصادر دبلوماسية عربية بالقاهرة عن استيائها الشديد لموقف سورية حول رفضها إجراء حوار مع المعارضة خارج أراضيها, محذرة من أن التعنت السوري سيؤدي إلى إجهاض الحل العربي.

وذكرت صحيفة “الأهرام” المصرية أن “الأمين العام للجامعة العربية نبيل العربى أجرى اتصالات عاجلة مع وزير الخارجية السورى وليد المعلم ,طلب خلالها إيضاحات حول حقيقة الموقف السورى من قرار مجلس الجامعة الداعى إلى عقد حوار في أروقتها وتحت مظلتها بين الحكومة والمعارضة السورية من أجل التوصل إلي تسوية لهذه الأزمة”، دون أن توضح الصحيفة طبيعة الرد السوري.

وكان نائب الأمين العام لجامعة الدول العربية أحمد بن حلي أعلن الاثنين إلى أن الجامعة بانتظار الرد السوري الرسمي على الطرح العربي، الذي نتج عن اجتماع وزراء الخارجية العرب, معربا عن أمله في أن تتجاوب دمشق مع الجهد العربي الرامي لمعالجة الأزمة الحالية والعمل على تدشين حوار وطني سوري”.

وقرر وزراء الخارجية العرب ، في ختام اجتماعهم بمقر الجامعة العربية، يوم الأحد، تشكيل لجنة وزارية برئاسة قطر، للاتصال بالقيادة السورية لوقف العنف وإجراء اتصالات بينها وبين أطياف المعارضة لبدء حوار في مقر الجامعة وتحت رعايتها خلال 15 يوما، وإبقاء مجلس الجامعة في حالة انعقاد كامل لمتابعة الوضع في سورية.

وفي سياق متصل, اعتبرت مصادر دبلوماسية عربية رفيعة بالقاهرة، حسب “الأهرام، أن “الموقف السوري الصادر عقب اجتماع مجلس الجامعة يضيع فرصة تاريخية للتوصل إلي حل عربي لأزمته”, معربة عن “استيائها الشديد لموقف سورية حول رفض إجراء حوار مع المعارضة خارج أراضيها”.

وكان سفير سورية لدى الجامعة أعلن تحفظ سورية على القرار الصادر عن مجلس الجامعة جملة وتفصيلا، ورفض إجراء حوار خارج الأراضي السورية، وإسناد رئاسة اللجنة العربية الوزارية لرئيس وزراء قطر ووزير خارجيتها.

وحذرت المصادر الدبلوماسية من أن “استمرار الموقف السوري المتعنت من شأنه أن يضيع فرصة إيجاد حل عربي لأزمتها، مما يعطي الفرصة واسعة للتدخل الأجنبي الذي أكدت أنه لن يكون في صالح سوريا أو المنطقة برمتها وستكون حكومتها المسئول عن هذا التدخل وما يتبعه من تداعيات”.

وتشهد عدة مدن سورية منذ 15 آذار الماضي مظاهرات تركزت أيام الجمعة بشكل خاص تنادي بالحرية وشعارات سياسية مناهضة للنظام, ترافقت مع سقوط مئات الشهداء من المدنيين والجيش وقوى الأمن.

وتقول الأمم المتحدة إن عدد الضحايا الذين سقطوا منذ بدء الاحتجاجات في سورية وصل إلى 3 ألاف شخص, فيما قال نائب وزير الخارجية فيصل مقداد إن أكثر من 1100 من أفراد الأمن السوري قتلوا في الاضطرابات التي ترى دمشق أنها “مؤامرة دولية” تستهدف مواقفها في المنطقة.


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October 18th, 2011, 2:29 pm


819. JAD said:

خبير في الشؤون الشرق أوسطية: روسيا قد تغير موقفها من الملف السوري

في لقاء خاص مع قناة روسيا اليوم أكد أندريه ستيبانوف الخبير في الشؤون الشرق أوسطية أن السلطة والمعارضة في سورية لا تتمتعان بقاعدة مشتركة بل تمثلان طرفي نقيض، وأن خطة وزراء خارجية الدول العربية هي خطة معقولة وتتميز بالصواب والعقلانية وأتت في الوقت المناسب لكن ليس هناك إمكانية لتنفيذ هذه الخطة لأن المعارضة والسلطة رفضتا قبولها، فالمعارضة تشير إلى استحالة القيام بذلك مع سيطرة ظروف سفك الدماء وقمع المظاهرات.

وحول الفيتو الروسي-الصيني ضد مشروع قرار إدانة للقمع في سورية طرح في مجلس الأمن الدولي ، أشار ستيبانوف إلى أن هناك مشروع قرار روسي واخر صيني يصاغان في مشاورات تجري وراء كواليس الأمم المتحدة بشأن فرض عقوبات إضافية على السلطة السورية والأهم أنهما تتضمان عدم التدخل الخارجي، وهذا ما تسعى روسيا إلى تحقيقه بالمشاركة مع الجانب الصيني دون أن يستبعد تقديم مشروع قرار روسي – صيني مشترك.

وانتقد ستيبانوف ازدواجية المواقف الخارجية من الملفات الساخنة والثورات في المنطقة العربية ففي الوقت الذي تمارس فيه الضغوطات لتطبيق عقوبات على النظام السوري، يتم التعامل بشكل آخر مع الاضطرابات في اليمن أو البحرين مشيراً إلى أن ازدواجية المعايير في الغرب بات شيئاً مألوفاً وعادياً، وضرب مثلاً على ازدواجية معايير الموقف الأمريكي من قضايا الشرق الأوسط، وكذلك بالنسبة للموقف الروسي بالنسبة للملف الليبي حيث كان هناك تأييد للقذافي ورفض لبقائه في السلطة، وأن هذا الأمر ينطبق كذلك على سورية. واعتبر الخبير الروسي أن الدول الخليجية تربط الأمر بالمعتقدات الدينية قبل الأخذ بالعلاقات الاجتماعية والإنسانية بعين الاعتبار، فهناك مسار يدفع باتجاه حرب طائفية بحيث يكون السنة ضد العلويين.

ونوه ستيبانوف بأن الازدواجية في المعايير أمر لا مفر منه، فتأييد المعارضة في سورية شيء وتأييد المعارضة في البحرين شيء آخر، ولكن تبقى للمعارضة حقوقها في المطالبة بالحرية وحقوق الإنسان، وهذا حق لا يمكن نكرانه على الجماهير العربية ومن حقها الاستمتاع بكافة الحقوق والحرية والعدالة الاجتماعية والتغيير.

وأكد الخبير في الشؤون الشرق أوسطية أن النظام السوري وجد نفسه في مأزق حقيقي، وأن هناك مرحلة من الفزع في الأوساط السلطوية وأن هذه السلطة لن تقبل بالخطة وبالمقترحات العربية انطلاقاً من التعنت حول إجراء الحوار مع المعارضة وأنه لا يرى آفاقاً لمثل هذا الحوار. وأوضح ستيبانوف أن موقف موسكو يتغير تدريجياً وأنه يتجه نحو قبول وجهة نظرفرض العقوبات وتوجيه الإنذار الأخير للنظام السوري والانضمام إلى حملة الإصلاحات العاجلة الفورية في الساحة السياسية السورية، وأن التحليل الموضوعي لموازين القوى وعدم رغبة النظام في الإصلاحات لن يكون محركا للتغيير.

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October 18th, 2011, 2:34 pm


821. Tara said:


Did Bourhan Galioun replied back. Few of the SNC figures coming out rejecting the AL proposal. I think they are not playing it smart. They should allow Bashar to reject it first so Russia and China have no excuse using the veto next time around.

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October 18th, 2011, 2:48 pm


822. JAD said:


-You are giving the SNC too much credits that it doesn’t deserve since the meeting wasn’t their ‘accomplishment’ as you claim, it was an obvious Qatari/US call.

-“كل هذا إن عنى شيئاً فهو يعني أن اعتراف دول الخليج الرسمي بهذا المجلس ككمثل للمعارضة و الثورة السوريتين أصبح و شيكاً خصوصاً بعد ترحيب العديد من فعاليتها و مسؤوليها به.”
“بالإضافة لذلك فإن هذه الدعوة تشكل بينة غير مباشرة على أن الدول العربية تنظر إلى المجلس الوطني السوري على أنه الفصيل الأساس في المعارضة السورية أو لربما هو الممثل لهذه المعارضة”
They didn’t even mention the SNC so how can you come up with such conclusion?

-You keep changing your position between calling the SNC ‘smart’ ‘لعبة سياسية حاذقة’, while you just called them naive and that ‘YOU’ will teach them how to become better in ‘DIPLOMACY’?!

-“و أخيراً معطياً الذريعة للدول العالمية التي تريد التربص به لفرض عقوبات أشد عليه و ربما استصدار قرارٍ عالمي ضده. ”
Yet you claim that you are not looking for international intervention…..and you want me to believe your sincerity, Good luck!

In short your article is nothing more than bla bla bla SNC bla bla bla…I didn’t learn anything new or important out of it, I’ll give it 3 out of 10 🙂 sorry for being harsh.

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October 18th, 2011, 2:56 pm


823. Tara said:


I like your article. I suggest that people who only see it as blah blah blah, check something called Aricept. It helps when people see things as blah blah.

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October 18th, 2011, 3:00 pm


824. Haytham Khoury said:

@ Tara # 812

Radwan Ziadeh, the responsible of the foreign relation in the council, replied the SNC expressed their welcome for the initiative.

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October 18th, 2011, 3:01 pm


825. Haytham Khoury said:

Dear Jad @822:

You can read this, too.

By the way, more sanctions do not mean military intervention.

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October 18th, 2011, 3:05 pm


826. JAD said:

Haytham your comments are full of contradiction:
When I wrote to you that the AL meeting was a Qatari-US game I was right and you actually linked the article that clearly state that form Alakhbar, none of the GCC members care for your mighty SNC or what it represent or what it is calling for, freedom, democracy or bla bla bla…If the plan from the start wasn’t meant to solve anything and it’s instead a trap to make things more complicated as you apparently cheering, then your SNC and the Arab Gulf were not sincere or serious in solving the problem therefore the regime is actually right to refuse to negotiate or talk to these clowns who are used by everybody that you promote…
As I wrote before your article is bla bla bla…

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October 18th, 2011, 3:17 pm


827. Mango said:

818. JAD
“الأهرام” عن مصادر دبلوماسية بالقاهرة: الرفض السوري للحل العربي يفتح الباب واسعا للتدخل الأجنبي

لن يسمح للتدخل الأجنبي !!!!! كيفما تبدلت و تشقلبت الدنيا في سوريا طولا و عرضا لن تفلت الى المجهول ابدا و لن يسمح للاعبي الكشتبان سرقة مستقبلها ! و روسيا هنا المذكورة اضافة الى الصين ستكونان ضامنا رئيسيا لذلك ! أما بالنسبة للأهرام فلتنظر على مصر من باب أولى !!!

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October 18th, 2011, 3:32 pm


828. Haytham KHoury said:

@ TARA 823

Thank you. I should credit you for many of the ideas.

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October 18th, 2011, 3:34 pm


829. jad said:

\’I should credit you for many of the ideas.\’
LOL No wonder your writing is going downhill

I guess you missed this about Zibaleh:
“Most irritating voice
I now admit–and because I don’t like anything this guy says or does–that his voice is the most annoying voice to my ears.
PS I am dying to know why MESA decided a few years ago to award him some award. I am dying to know who was behind the decision. What was the reason? His desperate attempts to ingratiate himself with Zionist groups in the US?”

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October 18th, 2011, 3:48 pm


830. ghufran said:

I hope this blog does not become a stage for lies,rumors,propaganda and unfounded claims. Who of you actually believe that 40 armored vehicles were destroyed and 230 soldiers killed in one neighborhood in Homs in one day,and who is naive enough to believe that the regime enjoys the support of 70% of Syria’s Sunni population?
Being silent does not mean supporting the regime,some of you like to ignore this simple fact.
More than 1/3 of Syria’s population are not in the Sunni majority and somewhere between 40-50% of those are Alawis,but there are still people who still believe that the regime can continue to suppress Syrians,including the Sunni majority,and others who think that the armed opposition can magically wipe out millions of Syrians,and that the regime or the opposition can get away with it.
Fighting factions need to talk and keep their pride in the freezer for the sake of the wounded country.

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October 18th, 2011, 4:12 pm


832. Dale Andersen said:

Memo To: JAD

RE: “…the AL meeting is a Qatari-US game…”

Everything you’re not involved in is a game to you, Dude. Why don’t we just crown you King and let you call the shots? And let’s see how you play the blame game when everything blows up in your goofy face…

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October 18th, 2011, 5:41 pm


833. bronco said:

Tara #807

Sorry, the article you refer to does not give the final position of Egypt. I did read in another article written after the meeting was over that Egypt opposed the rejection of Syria from the Arab League on two bases: First that Syria was one of the 7 founders of the Arab League in 1945, and second that Syria has fought the wars against Israel together with Egypt.

My interpretations maybe about love, but love fo Syria and in favor of nothing else that prevention of the horrors of a civil war where brothers would kill each other.

If they have any human feelings, the Leaders of the opposition, Ghalioun and Cie should do what serious opposition leaders in the world that has respect for human lives will do:
Ask for massive strikes that would show if they have any resonance with the people.

But they don’t because simply they know, after having tried it, that no one will follow because they have no real base support in the country.
Therefore they resort to demonstrations of a few thousands angry people that brought only misery and hatred. Sitting in Paris, they are playing with the lives of people.

Now they are confused by the Arab League call, they will be escalating the violence because they have no other strategy. They lost their battle and do not want to accept that they are forced into a dialog they always rejected. This is why they are pushing for an all out civil war where blood will spill and the UN will be obliged to intervene with or without a resolution.
I have no respect whatsoever for them. For me they are just even more vicious than what they accuse the present regime of being.

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October 18th, 2011, 6:39 pm


834. bronco said:

Tara #821

“I think they are not playing it smart”

Of course they are. They have failed all the line and now they want nothing else that the escalation of the military conflicts to oblige the UN to come in like in Rwanda after hundred thousands of death and a destroyed country.
You’re free to trust them I just don’t. I just hope they fail again.

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October 18th, 2011, 6:48 pm


835. zoo said:

سيد أحمد: “مجلس التعاون الخليجي يريد ذبح سورية بحجة مساعدة السوريين”..رسالة الى الدكتور العربي

أكد الدكتور رفعت سيد أحمد مدير مركز يافا للدراسات والأبحاث بالقاهرة أن دعوة دول مجلس التعاون الخليجي لاجتماع طارئ لمجلس الجامعة العربية على المستوى الوزاري لبحث الوضع في سورية هو مؤامرة عليها وليس حلا لمشكلاتها لأن هذه الدول لا تسعى لحرية الشعب السوري بل لفك ارتباطه بالمقاومة الفلسطينية واللبنانية خدمة للولايات المتحدة.

وقال سيد أحمد في مقال بعنوان (إلى الدكتور نبيل العربي..مجلس التعاون الخليجي يريد ذبح سورية وليس مساعدة السوريين) نشرته صحيفة الدستور المصرية أمس: إن سورية تحتاج إلى إصلاح سياسي وإلى مكافحة الفساد مثلها مثل أغلب الدول العربية ولكن هل يحتاج أى عاقل اليوم أن يصدق أن مجلس التعاون حريص على دماء السوريين لكي يدعو مجلس الجامعة العربية للانعقاد لإصدار قرارا يسوغ حظر طيران ثم احتلال لسورية كما فعل المجلس الخليجي نفسه مع ليبيا باسم حمايتها فإذا بنا أمام احتلال كامل للبلاد سبقه ذبح لـ 35 ألفا من أهلها وتقسيم لجغرافيتها وثرواتها بين دول حلف الناتو مع بعض الفتات لعرب الخليج.

ورأى سيد أحمد أن الأمر بالأساس مؤامرة لحصار حزب الله وحماس والمقاومة العربية التي وفرت لهم سورية الشعب والقيادة الحماية والدعم مؤكدا أن الحلف الغربي الإسرائيلي وحلفاءه التقليديين لا يريدون هذه المقاومة بل شرقا أوسط جديدا خاليا منها لكنه بعد أن فشل بالوسائل العسكرية المباشرة أخذ يستخدم شعارات الثورة وحقوق الإنسان وهي منه براء وإلا لطبقها على أهلنا في فلسطين والعراق وكذلك في أفغانستان بل وعلى دول الخليج التي تطبق نظام الكفيل العبودي.

وخاطب سيد أحمد الأمين العام لجامعة الدول العربية قائلا: إن موافقة دول مجلس التعاون الخليجى على طلبها بإدانة سورية هو محاولة لتمهيد الأرض لاحتلالها ومن العار أن يتم ذلك فى عهدك مضيفا: إن السوريين يريدون بلا شك إصلاحاً ولكنهم لا يريدون أيضا تدخلا أجنبيا فى بلادهم مشيرا إلى أن دول مجلس التعاون الخليجي دعت لاجتماع تريده بل تسعى إليه بطلب من واشنطن واسرائيل وإن هذه الدول تعمل جاهدة لفك ارتباط الشعب السوري بالمقاومة الفلسطينية واللبنانية خدمة لواشنطن وما يتقولون به عن حقوق الإنسان ليس سوى دموع التماسيح.

وختم مدير مركز يافا للدراسات والأبحاث مقاله بالقول: نصيحتي للدكتور نبيل العربي ألا يخضب يداه بدماء العرب وأن يقوم مع من بقي شريفا من الوزراء العرب بقيادة سفينة الحوار والمصالحة لا سفينة الحرب والعدوان والفتن الداخلية.

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October 18th, 2011, 7:11 pm


836. Tara said:


“My interpretations maybe about love, but love fo Syria and in favor of nothing else that prevention of the horrors of a civil war where brothers would kill each other.”

You happy now?  You made me cry.  I cried three times reading the comments section.  Once, when I was accused of being Israel sympathizer with subtle preference and clear signs, once when Why-Discuss left SC, and now.  

And for some reason I believe you.  I believe your love for Syria and believe me I love Syria too.

But..I can’t see thing through your eyes. It is my deepest conviction that the regime is
incapable and not interested in dialogue or reform and that is that…    

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October 18th, 2011, 7:28 pm


837. bronco said:


I do not know if the regime is capable or not of a dialog. I just hope a dialog will happen sooner than later because violence is not a solution for no one. The scars it leaves may hurt for long.

My worry is that the Syrians may pay a dear price for just being what I know them to be: simple, friendly, undemanding, quiet and tolerant to each other.

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October 18th, 2011, 8:19 pm


838. zoo said:

“The labor movement alone can paralyze and destroy the dictatorship in Damascus, as was the case in Tunisia and Egypt.”

Labor Movement Absent in Syrian Revolt

“The labor movement is simply absent in Syria. This may be because Syrian unions are controlled by the state and have been relatively listless compared to those in Egypt and Tunisia. The existence of semi-independent Tunisian unions and an increasingly active Egyptian labor movement in the past few years helped catapult the organized workers into the heart of revolution. In both cases, this led to a quick resolution of the uprising in favor of the people.

The role of the Syrian labor movement seems more crucial today than ever before. Syrian workers can end the deadlock in Syria, and collectively they are capable of bringing down the system. Calling for foreign intervention and asking for international protection may backfire and work in the regime’s favor.

The labor movement alone can paralyze and destroy the dictatorship in Damascus, as was the case in Tunisia and Egypt.”

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October 18th, 2011, 9:06 pm


839. John khouri said:

@ 810 – Majed Khaldcoocoo

you said : –
“The problem we have is that the Alawi community number is over 1.5 million, any military solution means over 2 million dead among Sunni and Alawite,I believe we need to get another Alawi officer to lead a change,we need to make it clear that we are against Bashar and not against the Alawite sect”.

Ummm maybe u need to do ur research again. The allawite community make up 12-15% of the syrian population(3,450,000)

you said:-
“I dont think that the christians are major factor,they are less than a million,many of them do not support Assad,and they should not worry about different regime”

Once again u got it wrong mr dellusional. The christians make up 10% of theh syrian population (2.3millon). And the christian population are die hard supporters of the govenment and of the president bashar al assad. Do i have to post all those videos again to make up u wake up out of ur dreamworld. It must really get to ur nerves that ur extremist idealogy hasnt been able to gather support from the kurds,christians,druze or allawites. Without the minorities of syria use will be left to hide in ur alleys and laneways

You can have a read of all the statistics involving % of ethnics in syria

And her are some videos for u and ur jihadi extremist friends to watch on the supporter base of christians in syria

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October 18th, 2011, 9:52 pm


840. Conrad said:

I found the article interesting and informative, but somehow feel the author failed to acknowledge at least one of the main causes of divisiveness in Syria. The Baathist socialist/secularist policies that built the current state, have long since given way to a Cult-leadership model, evident in the transfer of power from Hafez Assad to one of his sons, Basher (Assad’s first son, and his choice for succession was killed in an unfortunate accident).

Nonetheless, the cronyism that has taken place in the Assad rule era is a virtual empire of synacures in posts of power within the Syrian ministries and the Army,and guess what? They are almost completely dominated by Alawite designated members, with a few Christians where their support is important. The Sunnis are largely disenfranchised.

As revolutions sweep the Arab world, they will each take their local color and queues from regional and national inequities states have perpetrated and perpetuated over their peoples, and when long suppressed change finally comes, it is often violent.

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March 6th, 2012, 7:18 pm


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