The Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham Expands Into Rural Northern Syria

In the previous post, Aymenn al-Tamimi discussed developments in the relationship between two primary al-Qa’ida affiliates operating in Syria: Jabhat al-Nusra, and the ISIS. Through his analysis he concluded that in some areas the distinction between Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) is blurry, while in other areas the two seem to visibly operate as distinctly separate groups. He also believes that though a “grand ideological clash” between the two groups is not impossible, it is premature to point to one at present. Now, in part two, Aymenn delves into the growth of ISIS power in specific communities and discusses the plausibility of predicted FSA – ISIS confrontation.

 

The Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham Expands Into Rural Northern Syria

Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimiby Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi for Syria Comment


Introduction

In a post for Jihadology a few weeks back, I identified how the Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham (ISIS) was playing an important role in the fighting on the outskirts of the city of Aleppo and in the surrounding countryside. Since that time, it has become apparent that the group has been seeking to expand outwards and to consolidate control over outlying towns in both the Aleppo and Idlib regions, particularly those of strategic importance along or near the border with Turkey.

Azaz

This initiative has already served to foster division. For example, in the town of Azaz, which is in close proximity to the Turkish border, a protest ocurred on July 1 against ISIS’ entry into the town and its attempt to establish headquarters there. Yet on July 5, Azaz saw a counter-rally in favor of ISIS featuring a slogan common for such demonstrations—‘Labbayka ya Allah’ (‘I am at your service, God’)—accompanied by conspicuous numbers of ISIS flags.

It should be noted that this pattern of division—between those members of Syrian society who support ISIS vs. those who do not—is also observed in the city of Aleppo itself, where ISIS supporters have generally held separate rallies from those of other demonstrators. (I have found one notable exception: a rally on June 4 for the then-besieged city of Qusayr in the area of al-Firdus, featuring both ISIS and Free Syrian Army [FSA] flags).

Resentment over the ISIS presence in Azaz grows. One notable outlet for this disapproving sentiment is a youth activist Facebook page called ‘The Youth of Aleppo—Azaz’ which posted the following status: ‘We ask the Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham to establish their state from Iraq [meaning ‘in Iraq’?] since the system of prostitution [there] has not yet fallen.’

The group has also circulated an alleged statement from a local council in the town of Tel Abyaḍ in Raqqah Governorate claiming that the ISIS has confiscated internationally-donated generators intended to provide drinking water for the residents of the town.

On the other hand, ISIS is attempting some outreach to the locals of Azaz, offering Qur’an and Sunnah recitation competitions—among other religious activities—for the population during Ramaḍān.

Jarabulus

As for other towns, here is a photo of the ISIS headquarters in the northern border town of Jarabulus. The banner reads: ‘The Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham: Province of Aleppo. Emirate of Jarabulus.’

ISIS headquarters, Jarabulus, Syria

Another photo shows the flag of ISIS flying over Jarabulus:

ISIS flag flies over Jarabulus, Syria

One activist page on Facebook called ‘Jabhat al-Nusra does not represent me’ claims the following to give context to the first photo: ‘Photo from Jarabulus following the seizure of it by al-Qa’ida after battles with the FSA. It is said that ISIS then killed scores of civilians, among them children, during al-Qa’ida’s attempt to occupy the town.’

In a similar vein, on June 15, the Arabic news outlet al-Waie News claimed to cite a local source in Jarabulus on clashes between ISIS and a rebel battalion known as the ‘Family of Jādir,’ which uses the FSA flag.

The source claimed that the clashes started after a member of ISIS was wounded during a round of celebratory gunfire that followed a concord reached between the two groups, giving rise to a renewed violent battle between ISIS and the Family of Jādir for fifteen hours, resulting in ISIS’ seizure of the town, as well as the killing of one ISIS fighter and several from the Family of Jādir.

On 13 June, the leader of the Family of Jādir—Yusuf al-Jādir—released video testimony in which he claimed that ISIS launched an attack on the home of Ahmad al-Jādir and then began shooting at dozens of innocent civilians, resulting in the deaths of several children: among them, Mahmoud Kerkaz, Sheikho Shawish, Ibrahim al-Ahmad, and a young Kurdish girl. He continues by documenting other alleged acts of ISIS aggression in the town.

It thus appears that ISIS seized control of Jarabulus by force. One thing that is important to note from the opposing testimony is the issue of naming. The source for al-Waie News from Jarabulus merely sees ISIS as a new name for Jabhat al-Nusra (JN) in the town, and Yusuf al-Jādir likewise deems the two names interchangeable.

Thus, even if my formulation for the city of Aleppo itself—that ISIS and JN are two separate entities—applies here, the perception of at least some residents of the town nevertheless differs. As in Raqqah, the two may well be interchangeable in Jarabulus.

The concept of interchangeability could make sense here in light of the fact that JN has had an active presence in the northern Turkish border areas in the past (cf. clashes with Farouq Battalions in April on the border in Raqqah Governorate). Certainly, Jarabulus has been known for a JN presence in the past: here is a video of a JN-led rally in Jarabulus from December 14, 2012, featuring the chant of ‘We are Anṣar Allah.’

In this context, one should also note a revealing report from the Damascus Bureau, which actually visited Jarabulus. The reporter, Youssef Shaikho, explains that Jabhat al-Nusra in Jarabulus supported the announcement of ISIS, and most of its fighters in the town are native Syrians, providing a notable exception to the media narrative of ISIS as a group solely composed of foreign fighters.

Further blurring the lines of group-alignment and public sentiment, not all those who, like al-Jādir, use the FSA flag in Jarabulus are necessarily opposed to ISIS’ ideological vision. For example, here is a Facebook activist page from Jarabulus that uses the FSA flag. Yet it has put up a status that laments the loss of the Khilafa (Caliphate) and denounces the UN and its decision-making as a mere front for occupation.

In any event, ISIS is now said to be operating an active Shari’a court in Jarabulus, which has allegedly executed three young men recently on charges of rape and murder. ISIS is also accused of detaining the son of a prominent martyr from the Family of Jādir known as Abu Furāt.

In terms of the reasons behind the Jādir-ISIS clashes, one should be cautious about presenting them as a simple ideological battle. It rather seems to have been a power struggle for control of an important border area. The Kurdish PYD, as the Damascus Bureau notes, also has a small activist presence in Jarabulus, yet it has been left untouched and tolerated by ISIS.

At the same time, ISIS is trying to counter the allegations put out about its conduct in Jarabulus by emphasizing local support in the town for the group, including children.

al-Bab

Another town in rural Aleppo where ISIS is establishing its presence is al-Bab. On July 5, the outlet Saḍa ash-Sham al-Islami put up a set of photos of a meeting for Dawah  held by the ISIS in al-Bab. [Da’wa means “invitation” and often refers to proselytism—the inviting of others to join Islam. In this case, it refers to outreach to Muslims to strengthen their faith.]

Da'wah meeting in al-Bab

In contrast to what appears to have been a more aggressive approach in Jarabulus, ISIS seems to be engaging in an active outreach effort to the population of al-Bab. Thus, the local outlet al-Bab Press reported that ISIS is running school bus services for children who have seen their education disrupted for many months by Assad regime bomb attacks. A local FB page in al-Bab also gave an account last month from an ISIS fighter of clashes between ISIS and Assad regime soldiers aided by Hezbollah fighters in the wider Aleppo area.

Manbij

The town of Manbij offers a case contrasting with that of al-Bab. Recently, Manbij has seen a protest rally against ISIS. The demonstration was sparked by two grievances against ISIS: first, ISIS is accused by some local activists of destroying works of art in Manbij, and second, of kidnapping a local sheikh. Protests continued into Friday of last week, on which day ISIS had been holding a daw’ah meeting in Manbij featuring a number of locals in support of the group, as per the photo below.

ISIS holds dawah meeting in Manbij, Syria

Prior to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s announcement of the formation of ISIS in early April, Manbij had been known for an active JN presence in alliance with Ahrar ash-Sham, who together took on the Farouq Battalions in violent clashes in the town at the beginning of the month, resulting in the expulsion of the Farouq Battalions from Manbij.

The clashes began after Ahrar ash-Sham had arrested a certain Abu Khaldun, a friend of the leader of the Farouq Battalions in Manbij. Ahrar ash-Sham and its allies justified the arrest on the grounds that this man had been one of the leading criminal figures in Manbij and had to be put on trial by the Shari’a committee in Aleppo, while emphasizing that there was no fundamental conflict between them and those under the banner of the FSA.

Following the defeat of the Farouq Battalions, Ahrar ash-Sham held a victory rally in Manbij on 6 April with dozens of supporters and allies, featuring the al-Qa’ida flag and a banner reading ‘The Ummah wants an Islamic Khilafa.’ The person who uploaded the video described it as being held in celebration of the expulsion of ‘gangs of thieves’- a common charge leveled against the Farouq Battalions in the north, which unlike the Ikhwaan-aligned Homs division lack ties to any major Islamist groups.

On a side note, the rally itself should illustrate that those who posit a strict dichotomy between supposedly ‘nationalist’ Salafists in Ahrar ash-Sham as opposed to transnational jihadists are mistaken. This rally in Manbij and Ahrar ash-Sham’s statement on JN’s pledge of allegiance to al-Qa’ida show that concepts of the transnational ummah that supersedes “artificial borders” and the nation-state of Syria are often blurred in Ahrar ash-Sham’s ideological thought.

Of course, one also must not generalize in the opposite direction and portray all of Ahrar ash-Sham as bent on an international Khilafa. Yet whenever non-Islamists protest against groups like ISIS, as a rule Ahrar ash-Sham can be expected to side with the latter (cf. the case of Raqqah which I documented last month).

In the context of Manbij, therefore, one should not be surprised about a blurring of distinction between Ahrar ash-Sham’s support base and what is now known as the ISIS presence. Indeed, it is also apparent that there is another virtual mirror front of ISIS active in Manbij: namely, Ansar al-Khilafa, which is composed of a mix of native Syrians and foreign fighters, though exact proportions are unclear.

Ansar al-Khilafa is most prominent in rural Aleppo and Latakia. In the April rally led by Ahrar ash-Sham, it is likely that there were Ansar al-Khilafa supporters among the crowd. Here is a recent mural put up in Manbij in support of the group:

Ansar al-Khilafa mural in Manbij, Syria

ad-Dana

The final case we come to on the subject of ISIS’ expansion is that of ad-Dana in Idlib, near the border with Turkey. Here, a protest rally is said to have taken place against ISIS (though no video footage of it has emerged so far), sparking violent clashes. Yet it is the only case where we have a mainstream media outlet allowing ISIS to give its full side of the story thanks to an al-Jazeera English report (H/T: @khalidelmousoui) from the town. In the report, ISIS fighters claimed that those denouncing their presence were actually agents of the Assad regime.

However, it appears that this testimony is contradicted in an account given by pro-ISIS activists in Idlib, who denounced the clashes as ‘the work of some of the apostates of the Free Army.’ Meanwhile, a pro-ISIS Twitter user complained at the time of the clashes that the ‘malicious Free Army’ was besieging ISIS and expressed concerns about the beginnings of a ‘Sahwa’ movement against ISIS.

As of now, the al-Jazeera report says that ISIS is the only remaining armed group in the town. This is corroborated by local Idlib activist testimony that there are now no armed clashes in the town and reconciliation initiatives are underway. At the same time, claims that ISIS executed dozens of supporters of those identifying under the banner of the FSA—stemming chiefly from an ad-Dana rebel leader’s testimony were denied.

That said, both the rebel leader whose testimony is given by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the al-Jazeera report corroborate each other on the ISIS fighters as being from outside Syria.

Now in control of the town, ISIS is running a school for the children, and the ISIS presence as reported by al-Jazeera is corroborated by a video that has now emerged of ISIS fighters manning the entrance into ad-Dana.

Conclusion

In short, these various cases illustrate ISIS’ growing power in the north of Syria. ISIS is clearly not a force to be dismissed as marginal without any real support on the ground, even as its presence is undoubtedly sparking backlash in many areas. Above all, these recent developments as regards ISIS’ expansion vindicate to an extent my prediction in March in a guest post for Syria Comment about the emergence and establishment of jihadist strongholds in the north and east of Syria.

In terms of the future, one needs to be skeptical of the narrative being put out by Supreme Military Command (SMC) supporters of a looming, grand-scale FSA effort to take on ISIS in the north of Syria in a fundamental clash of ideologies. Resentment at the ideological level is more to be expected from civilian protestors rather than armed rebels.

One should particularly note my distinction here between SMC supporters and those in general who go by the banner of the FSA. While SMC supporters would like to portray all of those under the banner of FSA as opposed to ISIS, the evidence speaks otherwise, exemplified in this recent statement by an FSA military council in Aleppo denying rumors of clashes between their ‘brothers’ in ISIS and JN.

SMC supporters are likely the source of at least some of the allegations against ISIS, including the recent claim that ISIS is planning to declare a wider northern state after Ramaḍān: plausible in light of ISIS’ expansion in northern Syria but as of now uncorroborated in pro-ISIS circles.

Other rumors likely originating from pro-SMC sources include an alleged statement by JN distancing itself from ISIS (not released through JN’s official channel al-Manārah al-Bayḍā, so therefore suspect) and claims that ISIS killed Abu Furāt of Jarabulus, when his funeral actually took place a few months before ISIS was announced.

In particular, the reports attempting to portray JN in open conflict with ISIS are building on a narrative stemming from a Reuters piece in which JN was portrayed as a group of native Syrians disillusioned with the machinations of the foreign fighters of ISIS, hinting at the possibility of JN teaming up with other rebels to take on ISIS.

The motivation for spreading rumors about ISIS is quite apparent: namely, the SMC’s bid to secure Western arms, which will then be supposedly used to take on what Western nations like the UK perceive to be the number-one threat emanating from Syria.

In any case, the current PR war between SMC supporters and ISIS supporters will continue. Feeling the pressure, the latter have recently announced the formation of a new forum intended to counter purported media disinformation about the group. Thus can the exchange of claims and counter-claims be expected to intensify. Ascertaining the full truth short of getting on the ground will remain elusive.

 

Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi is a Shillman-Ginsburg Fellow at the Middle East Forum and a student at Brasenose College, Oxford University. His website is http://www.aymennjawad.org. Follow on Twitter at @ajaltamimi

Comments (491)


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301. SANDRO LOEWE said:

296. revenire

Deniying reality is a psichopathy. First demonstrations were peacefull and got bulleted. You know it perfectly. Do not cheat yourself. Bye bye

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July 21st, 2013, 11:59 am

 

302. zoo said:

MajedalKhaldoon

There is a rumor that the Syrian government wants to bring the dollar to around 90 SP by the end of Ramadan.

Are rich Syrians transferring their money back from Egypt or the GCC discreetly giving a helping hand?

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July 21st, 2013, 12:06 pm

 

303. zoo said:

Syria Looted By FSA/ Gulf Arab States/ Israel

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July 21st, 2013, 12:23 pm

 

304. Alan said:

must read
From Turkey with love: Another Israeli attack on Syria?
http://rt.com/op-edge/israel-attack-syria-turkey-313/

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July 21st, 2013, 12:28 pm

 
 

306. observer said:

Lest we forget how it all started
Mr. Kourdieh in Annahar newspaper.

20 تموز 2013

عندما صدحت الحناجر ودوّت في أسواق دمشق القديمة يوم الثلاثاء الواقع فيه 15 آذار 2011، كنت من بين العشرات الذين هتفوا للحرية ومكافحة الفساد، والإفراج عن المعتقلين. كرادار يتعقب ما حوله، أدير رأسي يميناً ويساراً، وأرى العشرات أيضاً من المتفرجين المذهولين يفوقوننا عدداً، ومنهم قلةٌ قليلة ممن هتف معنا من دون سبق إصرار أو تعمُّد، ربما اندفاعاً إنسانياً أو حساً وطنياً أو ربما فضولاً، وهم لا يأبهون للعواقب التي ستلحق بهم، ويرمون خلفهم، “كما نحن”، كل أشكال الذل والقهر والكبت والاستبداد، من دون أي عودة الى الوراء. من هنا كانت البداية.

فرّقنا بائعو الدخان وسائقو التاكسي حاملين العصي، بالاشتراك مع بعض عناصر حفظ النظام بلباسهم الرسمي الأنيق. عدت الى المنزل مسرعاً، كأنني زرعت عبوةً ناسفة لقتل الأبرياء في أحد شوارع دمشق. بعد ساعات، وبعدما كان ما جرى هو الخبر الأول والأهم في وسائل الاعلام، ذهبت للقاء بعض الأصدقاء للتقييم والعمل على خطوات جديدة. كانت النقطة الأهمّ عدم وجود تصوير واضح ومميز للحادثة، فقررت أن أعمل على تصوير وتوثيق كل ما أستطيع حضوره من مجريات. هكذا بدأت.
عدت الى مدينتي سَلمية، وبدأت العمل فيها كمصوّر للتظاهرات التي حيّرت النظام ووضعته على المحكّ، لِما تغنّت به من شعارات سلمية وسياسية محقة ومشروعة. ولأن هذه المدينة ذات طابع ديني أقلوي، ولا وجود للتشدد فيها، لم يكن النظام يستطيع قمعها أو أن يختلق عذراً لقمعها، فاقتصر على ارسال مندسّين لزرع الفتن بين المشاركين في التظاهرات، وأيضاً لتجنيد مخبرين يُعدّون التقارير المفصلة عن المتظاهرين والناشطين. ثمّ كانت حملة اعتقالات واسعة وهمجية اضطرتني أنا ومجموعة من الاصدقاء الى التخفي.
بالترافق مع ما كان يحدث في مدينة سَلمية، كان النظام قد وجد عذراً لباقي المدن والقرى الأخرى، بأن هناك مجموعات متشددة ومتطرفة تحمل السلاح وتقتل المدنيين وتخرب البلد، فضربها بكل أنواع الأسلحة. هذا حضّني أكثر على الذهاب الى هذه المدن لمتابعة التصوير والتوثيق. بدأت من مدينة حمص التي اندلعت فيها المعارك المسلحة لأسباب كثيرة ومعقدة.

مفتعل هذه الأسباب بالطبع هو نظام الأسد المتوحش الذي أجبر كثيراً من الأشخاص على حمل السلاح مكرهين للدفاع عن أنفسهم وعن أُسَرهم، وذلك ليكون لديه المبرر الذي سيقدمه إلى المجتمع الدولي وهيئات الأمم المتحدة.

من أبرز الأحداث وأكثرها غموضاً في حمص، “مجزرة الساعة” التي حصلت في ساحة الساعة وسط المدينة، أثناء اعتصام لألوف من سكانها وقلة من المدن الأخرى، وجميعهم كانوا من العُزّل لا يحملون حتى السكاكين.

فجأةً، ومن دون إنذار، أمطرتهم بنادق الغدر بالرصاص من كل الاتجاهات، فتدفقت أنهار الدماء بين الجثث المتراكمة التي شكّلت سداً منيعاً حولت هذه الأنهار بحيرة حمراء. حتى هذه اللحظة لم يستطع أحد أن يحصي عدد الشهداء والجرحى أو أن يعلم أين هم الآن، لأن الساحة كانت في الصباح المبكر قد عادت إلى ما كانت عليه قبل الجريمة، ولم يبق سوى الطائر المقدس، الروح الانسانية، تغرد في سماء الساحة.
بعد المجزرة اتخذ سكان الأحياء في حمص قرار تحرير المناطق وتطهيرها من عناصر النظام، لتكون اعتصاماتهم أكثر أمناً ولا تتعرض للغدر. تم تحرير أحياء عدة، منها الخالدية والحميدية وباب عمرو وباب السباع ودير بعلبة وغيرها، فبات يصعب على النظام اقتحامها وارتكاب المجازر، مما جعله يقصفها بالمدافع والهاون وراجمات الصواريخ والدبابات وأيضاً البراميل، التي تقذف من الطائرات ليلاً ونهاراً بشكل عشوائي وممنهج.
ذات يوم ذهبت الى الحميدية لتصوير ما خلّفته القذائف. كان المشهد أشبه برمانة منفرطة، إذ رأيت جدراناً مثقوبةً كالغربال، ومن بين هذه الثقوب روايات الشهداء وألحان صراخهم وتراتيل مناجاتهم أثناء القصف. نادراً ما رأيت سقف منزل لم تخترقه قذيفة أو لم يتهاو. الجادات والأزقة الضيقة والمرصوفة بالحجر خلت من عازفي العود والبزق، لتترك المكان لأكوام القمامة. عندما وصلت الى كنيسة أم الزنار بدا جامع الصحابي محمد بن مسلمة مجاوراً تماماً لها، وقد تشابكت الخطوط والألوان المسيحية والإسلامية في هذا المنظر. انسحرت حواسي اللادينية عندما شاهدت الصليب مجاوراً الهلال، وقد خَلت الجدران من الفسيفساء الاسلامية وتهاوت اللوحات التي تحمل أسماء الله الحسنى وأحاديث الرسول محمد، وتهاوت صور مريم العذراء والمسيح المصلوب. في السقف فتحة توصلك مباشرة الى عرش الله وتستطيع أن تتخيله عندما كان يشاهد تدمير أماكن عبادته، ورائحة البارود والركام والرطوبة تعبق في المكان بدل رائحة البخور والشموع. كانت غرفة الاعتراف تحفظ تاريخاً من الاعترافات دفنت في داخلها أيضاً، وغرفة تعليم القرآن والتجويد تنطلق منها أصوات التكبيرات التي تحدثوا عنها أثناء التظاهرات. أنهيت عملي في هذه المنطقة وانتقلت الى مكان آخر. المركز الثقافي في الخالدية كان مقراً للشبّيحة، وبعد معركة طويلة استطاع الثوار تحريره. عندما دخلت اليه كانت صور بشار الأسد ووالده حافظ الأسد القائد الخالد مرمية أرضاً. الحائط الكبير الذي تستند اليه خشبة المسرح مهدم بشكل كامل، وقد تحول الى شرفة تطل على دبابتين مدمرتين وعربة مدمرة هي الأخرى رُفع بجانبها علم الثورة. في استطاعتك أن تضع كرسياً وتحضر هذا المشهد بدلاً من حضور خطب أعوان البعث وأمسيات الشعراء المتصوفين بعبادة الأسد. انتقلت إلى مبنى الأمن الجنائي في البياضة الذي كان مركزا للشبّيحة ويعتلي سطحه القناصة الذين كانوا يشلّون حركة المدنيين والثوار إلى أن سيطر عليه هؤلاء، وقد دمر جزئياً. لفتني أن هذا المبنى كانت تحوطه الأبنية السكنية مما يجعل السكان دروعاً بشرية. هذه حال كل المباني التابعة للنظام وخصوصاً مباني أجهزة الأمن والمخابرات. هذا أمرٌ مدروس ومخطط له.
نويت الذهاب الى دمشق لأنجز بعض النشاطات السياسية وأصوّر ما أستطيعه، من نشاطات سلمية بعيدة عن القتل والدمار والعنف في حي الميدان وحي برزة. استعدت ثقتي أكثر وأكثر بالنشاط السلمي والمدني منذ 15آذار، الى أن بدأت معركة تحرير دمشق من الداخل. ذات مساءٍ شتويٍّ، في أحد بيوت أصدقائي بين برزة وتشرين والقابون، كنت أشعر بالملل قليلاً والأسى كثيراً والإحباط جداً، رحت أعدّ قذائف المدافع التي تنطلق عشوائياً من مركز الشرطة العسكرية في اتجاه المباني والبساتين، من دون أي احداثيات أو أهداف محددة. كانت الساعة قد تجاوزت الثالثة فجراً، عندما تعالت صيحات لم أفهمها في البداية أو لم استطع تصديق ما سمعت: “تكبيييير الله أكبر”. ثم لعلع اطلاق النار بشكل غزير وعشوائي. فتحت صفحة الـ”فايسبوك” لأتحرى فلم أجد أي خبر وكأن لا أحد في هذه المنطقة يغطي ما يجري. تسللت الى سطح المبنى لأحاول رؤية ما يجري، فتعالت الصيحات من جديد. من جهة الشمال كانت الصيحات “تكبيييير الله أكبر” ومن جهة الجنوب أصوات “شبّيحة للأبد لأجل عيونك يا أسد”. بدأ الاشتباك بين الثوار والشبّيحة، واستمر إلى الساعة السادسة صباحاً حين حلقت طائرات الأسد لتمشيط المنطقة لكنها لم تستطع رؤية أحد من الثوار، فهرعت مسرعاً الى الـ”فايسبوك” لنشر هذه الأخبار المفرحة والمحزنة في الوقت نفسه.
جئنا من هاوية مظلمة ودخلنا في هاوية أكثر ظلمة. كان متنفسنا الوحيد وخليلنا الروحي والفكري أن الحرية هي الحلم المنشود. لكن ما يجري الآن هو الموت ألف ألف مرة في كل لحظة، والانتقال الى هاوية أكثر اتساعاً وظلمة، وحده المجهول من يرسمها.
في بداية الأمر غمرتني نشوة مجنونة، وعواطف مشوشة، وصرخات متوحشة، ثم صرتُ مع الأيام مشاركاً في دفن الاستبداد والطغيان، ومقتولاً لحظيّاً بآلام الواقع في سوريا.

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July 21st, 2013, 12:50 pm

 

307. revenire said:

FIRST POST – DRUG DEALER AND PIMP? WHO IS AHMAD AL-JARBAA? KURDISH FIGHTERS CAPTURE NUSRA LEADER IN TAL ABYADH; SYRIAN ARMY CRUSHES ____* IN ‘ADRAA AREA;

In an article published by Naasser Sharaara in “Al-Akhbaar”, the name of the “Syrian opposition’s” new leader plays a major role in explaining the new Saudi campaign to destroy Syria and its people. Sharaara found out that his real name, as set out in Syria’s criminal registry is “Ahmad Al-‘Awniaan Al-Madlool Al-‘Aassi”. He was under arrest in Saudi Arabia in 2008 but, also, wanted on a criminal warrant in Syria for drug trafficking. Pursuant to an extradition agreement enforced by both the Saudi and Syrian security services, “Al-Jarbaa” was returned to Syria. He was put on trial and found guilty.

Another fact about Al-Jarbaa was recorded by the Qatari security service. When Hamad (Fatso) overthrew his father and took over the reins of power in Qatar, the then-foreign minister took refuge in Syria and demanded the re-installment of the former monarch, Khalifa. Hamad-Fatso contacted Al-Jarbaa and demanded that he kill the exiled foreign minister. According to Sharaara, Al-Jarbaa received a large sum of money after he promised to kill the foreign minister. But, apparently, instead of carrying out the task, he snitched on the conspirators by telling the ousted monarch’s supporters about the plan. He received another financial reward for doing exactly that. When the Syrian security services found out about this, an investigation was launched and Al-Jarbaa was arrested and charged with “larceny by trick or fraud”. He was sentenced to 5 months in prison for swindling everybody.

But it only gets better. Criminal records in Syria also showed that Al-Jarbaa was not some ordinary Cagliostro. In 2004, Al-Jarbaa cajoled the Libyan ambassador in Damascus by representing his “shaykh-hood” over the large Shammar Tribe which originates in Saudi Arabia but has branches in Syria, Iraq and Jordan. He finagled his way into Libya with a delegation of his fellow-tribesmen to pledge allegiance to Mu’ammar Al-Qaddafi who had just announced himself: “King of Kings and Lord of All Africa”. But also, in 2004, Al-Jarbaa tried to inveigle Rafic Hariri into accepting him on the basis of his tribal connections. But, at that exact time, the Syrian security services were pursuing him on charges of “running houses of prostitution in Damascus and Al-Hasaka”.

CONGRATULATIONS TO THE NATIONAL COALITION OF SYRIAN WHATEVER (NACOSROF) ON ITS ELECTION OF THIS REPUTABLE APE!! WE THANK YOU FOR YOUR GOOD TASTE. WE, ESPECIALLY, THANK THE SAUDI SIMIAN DYNASTY FOR ITS JUDICIOUS EXERCISE OF POLITICAL JUDGMENT!!

*censored

http://syrianperspective.blogspot.com/2013/07/first-post-drug-dealer-and-pimp-who-is.html

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July 21st, 2013, 1:37 pm

 

308. revenire said:

Sandro Loewe you can keep saying the demonstrations were peaceful but they weren’t. You don’t go from demonstrating for a better life to cannibalism in two years. There is something wrong with this picture.

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July 21st, 2013, 1:48 pm

 

309. ghufran said:

This is why they can kill and destroy but they will never win:
قال مراسل عكس السير في الرقة إن عناصراً من دولة العراق و الشام الإسلامية قاموا بجلد طلاب من جامعة الاتحاد الخاصة بسبب احتواء أجهزتهم الخلوية على أعلام الحرية و الاستقلال.
و قال الطلاب ( عدنان قنبر و أحمد ديري ) للمراسل إنه تم توقيفهم على أحد حواجز التابعة لدولة العراق و الشام بالقرب من الرقة ( حاجز المقص ) ، و تم اقتيادهم إلى غرفة بالقرب من الحاجز بسبب عدم حملهم لهويات شخصية.
و أضاف أحد الطلاب : ” تمت الاشارة بجميع أصابع الاتهام لنا بالدعارة والزندقة والزنا والتدخين وعدم الصيام والفسق و كل شيء، و تم جلد صديقي 30 جلدة على ضهره الواضح بالصورة بعد رؤية أغاني في جواله .. أما انا فلم يجد أي شيء يثبت عكس ما يريد هو .. و لم يشاهد إلا صور أعلام الحرية و الاستقلال فجن جنونه عندما رآها وتم البصق علي وجلدي على رأسي وكتفي الأيسر بالكرباج …وتم التعامل معنا على اساس كفار وزنادقة ولا ننتمي للدين بصلة “.
و تابع : ” وتم تهديدنا نحن (العلمانيين) حسب ما يقولون بالتفجيرا ت والسيارات المفخخة وكل شيء لقتل كل شخص علماني او كل شخص يريد حرية او دولة مدنية …او يرفع علم الاستقلال .. علما انني انا عدنان لم اتوقف عن الرد على كل شيء يتحدثه معي وبلإجابة وفق الأدب والنصوص القرآنية والأحاديث النبوية التي حفظتها وتعلمتها من والدي “.
و تابع عدنان : ” و كان ردهم أنني صوفي المذهب انا ووالدي حينما قلت له أنا أعرف في الدين جيدا ووالدي خطيب مسجد الفردوس ..فقال لي والدك صوفي زنديق لو أنو مسلم كا ن رباك منيح … قال انتم كفار والعلم ليس جهاد انا الجامعة هي دعارة فقط ويجب ان تتركو الدراسة كلها وإلا سوف ترون شيء لا يرضيكم ..عليكم بالثانويات الشرعية والجهاد …كلو بلغة تهديد وبصق وضرب مبرح ..”.

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July 21st, 2013, 1:51 pm

 

310. Mina said:

“S” H
Who is the pan-Arab here? who is stupid enough to believe that Qatar and the Saudis could ever deliver anything in the intrest of the Syrians?
Remember the betrayal of the Southern Iraqi Shias by George Bush Senior after inciting them to rebel?

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July 21st, 2013, 2:27 pm

 

311. Mina said:

Interesting how the Western media have for most of them skipped the Jordanian king’s official visit to the new authorities in Cairo yesterday
http://www.egyptindependent.com/news/jordan-s-king-abdullah-arrives-egypt
It doesn’t fit their narrative and pseudo-support for the recently poll-converted MBs?

How can people be fooled in believing that the West is going to do something for the Syrian people while no one ever objects to the daily bombings in Baghdad?

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July 21st, 2013, 2:39 pm

 

312. zoo said:

Is Hamas turning its back to Qatar and returning to the arms of Iran?

Iran opposes Israel-Palestine peace talks

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/77006/World/Region/Iran-opposes-IsraelPalestine-peace-talks.aspx

The Iran-backed Islamist movement Hamas which runs the Gaza Strip rejected a return to talks, saying Abbas had no legitimate right to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinian people.
Iran rules out a two-state solution and has its own vision of how to resolve the six-decade-old conflict between Israel and the Palestinians.

“The end of occupation … self-determination for the Palestinians, the return of all refugees to their ancestral land, and the creation of an integrated Palestine with Al-Quds (Jerusalem) as its capital,” Araqchi reiterated.

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July 21st, 2013, 2:50 pm

 

313. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

MINA
On of the reasons you have become irrelevant is because you don’t think people can do things on their own. It is always someone’s incitement.

The Syrians blew your “elitist” theories to dust. They did that from day one, and they are doing it every day.

And it is so funny that after protesting my comment, you simply post yet another post about the west ignoring some earth shattering event like the visit by a monarch of half known country to a proto-dictator of a well known, yet confused country.

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July 21st, 2013, 2:52 pm

 

314. majedkhaldoun said:

Sandroe

I try to get the news about the dollar and lira from Syria news, my brother in low works in exchange also

Zoo predicted that the dollar will come down to 90 lira
Zoo was the first to tarnish the image of Mr Jarba,now Mr.r–veneer is taking this job

Mr. Jarba was in Cairo ,he met FM in Egypt ,who in the press conference said Egypt support the revolution in Syria and will help Syrians in Egypt, this to me means they will not open the embassy in Damascus

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July 21st, 2013, 3:01 pm

 

315. Uzair8 said:

Rebel Ramadan momentum continues….

From AJE Syria Blog from about 3 hours ago:

Rebels and government forces are battling to gain control of Aleppo’s western suburbs.

Opposition fighters advance on the town of Khan al-Assal, one of the last towns in the western part of Aleppo province still held by President Bashar al-Assad’s forces.

Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Adow reports.

[Video]

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July 21st, 2013, 3:19 pm

 

316. SANDRO LOEWE said:

306. revenire

You know you lie. If you do not know you are out of reality or you get paid for doing this job of misinformation. Be true to yourself and stop this game. You are playing with human lives. It is so sad. ….only if you could share views with those people fleeing their homes…. with all children who lost their parents.

For me people who ignore human suffering is simply garbage.

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July 21st, 2013, 3:26 pm

 

317. Uzair8 said:

Ziad/Ghufran

Fair enough answers.

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July 21st, 2013, 3:30 pm

 

318. revenire said:

Syrians have been doing it from day one? Which ones? Who are the leaders?

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July 21st, 2013, 3:40 pm

 

319. revenire said:

“314. SANDRO LOEWE said:
306. revenire
You know you lie. If you do not know you are out of reality or you get paid for doing this job of misinformation. Be true to yourself and stop this game. You are playing with human lives. It is so sad. ….only if you could share views with those people fleeing their homes…. with all children who lost their parents.
For me people who ignore human suffering is simply garbage.”

I am human garbage?

What about all the Syrians who support the government who have been slaughtered by the cannibals?

I am not playing a game, nor getting paid and am true to myself.

There is no revolution. You’ve been tricked.

Try talking without calling anyone who does not support your FSA criminals names.

Millions of Syrians love Assad. I feel in my heart you know that is true.

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July 21st, 2013, 3:47 pm

 

320. SANDRO LOEWE said:

REVENIRE

I feel in my stomach what I feel for Assad and all his tribe of criminals, corrupts and brain washed zombies.

They had 42 years to show if they are capable of something. They show they can only torture, corrupt, kill and destroy Syria.

And they could only stay in power through the use of force and intimidation.

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July 21st, 2013, 4:09 pm

 

321. revenire said:

Empty slogans Sandro. I’ve heard this before. You just dodge everything and blame Assad. I don’t care if Assad had 1000 years.

I said what about the people murdered by the criminal FSA? Don’t tell me about Assad. Assad didn’t turn people into cannibals and beheaders.

You are weak when you blame Assad for everything. Your cause is weak.

Good luck trying to beat the SAA.

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July 21st, 2013, 4:18 pm

 

322. SANDRO LOEWE said:

Assad should go to Palestine with Iran Army and the brainwashed of Hezb Zbele and conquer Jerusalem instead of destroying syrian cities and exterminating syrian populations. But do not get cheated Assad is there alive an kicking because he has a mission and Israel and Iran know about this mission very well. And secondly if Assad cannot even free Aleppo how will he do to hit even a single israeli jet?

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July 21st, 2013, 4:19 pm

 

323. SANDRO LOEWE said:

REVENIRE,

Let’s try again:

This Revolution began as a peacefull one. With thousands of peacefull demonstrations all around Syria unifying a general demand for more freedom, rights, economic justice and end to corruption.

When Assad began bulleting the street for long weeks finally some sectors of the opposition took arms, other left the violent confrontation and other died under torture and in prison.

Can you deny any of these facts? Please tafadhal… good night and do not dream you are in a torturing chamber…

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July 21st, 2013, 4:22 pm

 

324. don said:

I only have two words for you Sandro. DRINK HEAVILY

288. SANDRO LOEWE said: DON
290. SANDRO LOEWE said: DON

hhahahahahahaha!

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July 21st, 2013, 4:24 pm

 

325. SANDRO LOEWE said:

322. DON

Sometimes drugs may help you stay calm during a crisis.

Assad and their mercenaries use drugs daily too. HA fighters have enough drug with their Sayyed Fake Allah messages.

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July 21st, 2013, 5:04 pm

 

326. zoo said:

MajedalKhaldoon

Thanks for distorsting again what I wrote.

I am not the first who have reported the dark and suspicious past of Jarba , the newspaper Al Akhbar was before me.
I have not predicted the dollar will get to 90, I said there is a rumor that’s what the government is trying to achieve.

Next time, please quote me, don’t paraphrase me adding your own interpretation.

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July 21st, 2013, 5:06 pm

 

327. zoo said:

UPDATE: Syrian forces kill at least 49 rebels near Damascus
Adra, near where at least 49 people were killed by the Syrian regime, lies en route to Damascus

Reuters , Sunday 21 Jul 2013

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/77047/World/Region/UPDATE-Syrian-forces-kill-at-least–rebels-near-Da.aspx

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces ambushed rebels in a strategic suburb near the capital Damascus on Sunday, killing at least 49 people, a pro-opposition monitoring group said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the opposition fighters had been killed near Adra, a town that rebels have been fighting to recapture from Assad’s forces. It lies on a route that the rebels had been using to smuggle weapons into Damascus until the army captured it a few months ago.

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July 21st, 2013, 5:10 pm

 

328. zoo said:

After Jarba pompously claimed a few days ago that his top priority was to get advanced weapons for the rebels, Egypt told him that Egypt’s top priority for Syria is a political solution to stop the bloodshed and not a military solution.
Egypt made no explicit condemnation of the Syrian government.
Overall Jarba got nothing, not even the removal of the visa now necessary for Syrian opposition members to get in Egypt.
It does not sound like a good start for the new president of the Coalition.

http://www.china.org.cn/world/Off_the_Wire/2013-07/22/content_29486395.htm

Egypt supports the political solution to the Syrian crisis, said Egypt’s newly installed Foreign Minister Nabil Fahmy after a meeting with new head of the Syrian National Coalition opposition group Ahmed al-Jarba in Cairo on Sunday.

“We are working on finding a political solution to the crisis in Syria and ending the bloodshed,” said Fahmy, adding that he hopes to attain the solution through the second Geneva Conference or any other possible way.

“Egypt supports the Syrian revolution and the aspirations of its people and condemns with no hesitation any blood shedding,” Fahmy said after a meeting with Al-Jarba while they discussed recent developments in Syria and Egypt.

Fahmy said that it is too early for the new government in Egypt to suggest any new initiatives regarding the Syrian crisis, “but we are deeply thinking about the situations and we will offer what serves the interests of the Syrian people.”

On Saturday Fahmy told reporters that Egypt has no intention for Jihad in Syria. He added that the decision by the ousted President Mohamed Morsi to sever ties with Syria will be reviewed.

Al-Jarba said that Egypt was never a supporter for the military solution in Syria and there should be a political solution in Syria.

Al-Jarba said that he was assured by the Egyptian FM that the new visa rules for Syrians imposed recently are only temporary measures that will end soon.

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July 21st, 2013, 5:20 pm

 

329. SANDRO LOEWE said:

Does anyone remebers the first days of the revolution when young peasants, women and children were bulleted for daring defy the regime of the God Prophet Assad the Bastard of the Mountains?

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July 21st, 2013, 5:29 pm

 

330. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

OBSERVER
Sorry I did not comment on the news of the promotion of regimists from d-p bootlickers to d-p lickers. I think it is well deserved and earned. They have worked so hard to earn such reward.

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July 21st, 2013, 5:42 pm

 

331. ghufran said:

There was a bloodbath in reef dimashq:
محافظة ريف دمشق- المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان::ارتفع الى 49 عدد المقاتلين الذين تاكد استشهادهم إثر كمين نصبته لهم القوات النظامية فجر اليوم في محيط المدينة الصناعية بعدرا
Kurds are closer to establishing a Syrian Kurdstan:
اعتبر سكرتير حزب الاتحاد الديموقراطي الكردي صالح مسلم أن لا نهاية قريبة للأزمة السورية، مشيراً إلى توجه في تشكيل حكومة مستقلة شمال سورية. وقال مسلم يوم 19 يوليو/تموز “نرى أن لا نهاية قريبة للازمة.. ولهذا نحن محتاجون داخل المجتمع في غرب كردستان لتشكيل ادارة ذاتية ديموقراطية”، علماً أن القصد من منطقة غرب كردستان هو محافظة الحسكة. وكشف مسلم أن هذا التوجه هو “مشروعنا منذ عام 2007 لتأمين احتياجات الناس”، مشددا على ان الحكومة ستكون مؤقتة، مضيفاً “هي شكل مؤقت للادارة وبمجرد أن يكون هناك اتفاق شامل ضمن سورية في المستقبل عندها يمكن أن نضع حداً لهذه الادارة”. في سياق متصل أكد المتحدث باسم “مجلس الشعب لغرب كردستان” شيرزاد الايزدي التوجه إلى تشكيل الحكومة، قائلاً إن “هذه الادارة الكردية ستكون بمثابة حكومة محلية مؤقتة، وهي التي ستتخذ الاجراءات لتنظيم انتخابات في المناطق الكردية”. واوضح الايزدي أن التجربة ستكون “في بعض الاوجه، مشابهة لتجربة إقليم كردستان”، مشيراً إلى أن المقترحات لتشكيل الحكومة وتنظيم الانتخابات تخضع للنقاش بين أطراف كردية متعددة، وأن هناك “فكرة لصياغة دستور مؤقت”.
المصدر: فرانس برس
Rebel sources claimed that Khan Al-Asal was “liberated” and that two high ranking army officers were killed, one in khan alasal and the other in eastern Gouta, regime-friendly media confirmed the death of the commander in Ghouta.
The bloodshed continues with no end in sight.
more evidence that Iran and Iraqi shia are not on the same page:
أبدت المرجعية الشيعية في النجف التي على رأسها آية الله علي السيستاني رفضها ذهاب المتطوعين الشيعة إلى سوريا للقتال في حرب تعتبرها سياسية وليست مذهبية. وقال رجل دين شيعي كبير يدير مكتب أحد المراجع الأربعة الكبار في النجف إن الذين يذهبون للقتال في سوريا «يعصون أوامر المرجعية»

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July 21st, 2013, 5:48 pm

 

332. don said:

Sunnis persecuting Sunnis in Egypt! I don’t see Iran and Hezbulah here! Do you?

Syrians in Egypt feel the chill of Mursi’s ouster

But the turmoil across Egypt showed no signs of easing, with the country’s vulnerable population of tens of thousands of Syrian refugees, previously welcomed by the government of deposed president Mohamed Mursi now the latest group to face open hostility from triumphant anti-Muslim Brotherhood forces.

Accused of supporting the Brotherhood and participating en-masse in pro-Mursi demonstrations – allegations the community denies – the racially-charged rhetoric directed against Syrians and Palestinians from some TV stations has translated directly into hostility on the streets, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees warned.

A presenter on one privately-run television station broadcast that Syrians had just 48 hours before they would be driven from their homes. It was not true, but the climate of fear was palpable, prompting the Arab Organisation for Human Rights to accuse elements of the Egyptian media of conducting a “hostile campaign” against Palestinian and Syrian refugees.

“They were saying Syrians are taking your jobs, they distributed flyers around 6th of October City where lots of Syrians live.

“Taxi drivers are always asking us if we are Syrian, they are judging us by our looks – I have a little black beard so people are thinking maybe I am Ikwan, but I am not, we are not that conservative.”

“For me and most of the Syrians here now, we are used to an uncomfortable way of living, we are used to feeling that there is always a danger around us, always on our nerves.”

http://www.huntervalleynews.net.au/story/1652728/syrians-in-egypt-feel-the-chill-of-mursis-ouster/?cs=12

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July 21st, 2013, 6:52 pm

 

333. don said:

Full Disclosure: What the Media Isn’t Telling You About War in Syria

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July 21st, 2013, 7:27 pm

 

334. ghufran said:

Violence by rebels started much earlier than many of you are willing to admit. A turning point in Banyas for example was the ambush of a military convoy carrying soldiers and officers going home to see their families (there was no incidents in Banyas until that unprovoked attack):

10/4/2011
استهداف حافلة للجيش بكمين نصبته مجموعة مسلحة كانت تتخفى بين الأشجار و الأبنية على طريق عام اللاذقية طرطوس 1ستشهاد تسعة بينهم ضابطان هما الشهيد المقدم وهيب عيسى و الشهيد المقدم ياسر قشعورإضافة إلى عشرات الجرحى بينهم أربع ضباط هم العقيد يوسف اسماعيل .. الرائد ثائر منير يونس .. النقيب محمد سليطين .. النقيب مازن فطيمي
Yaser Qash’our , as Joshua informed us, is the cousin of Joshua’s wife.

The first casualty in the army was in Daraa on March,22,2011
(Khaldoun M. Uthman)
3 days later, gunmen opened fire inside the officers club in Homs (again,Homs was quiet until that day)
few weeks later (April,17,2011) rebels assassinated a retired general (Abdo Hkider attilawi) with two of his sons and his nephew.
Here is an admission (taken from an opposition site)that Al-Masjed Al-Umari was used as a weapons storage center by a Saudi who was supporting rebels:

This is when Bashar dropped the ball and proved that he is arrogant and not fit to lead:

4 months after the “revolution”, demonstrators in Jablah (where sunni and alawites live together for centuries)and other areas express their opinion about alawites, Shia and Hizbullah:

This reminder is not intended to discount the fact that there were unarmed Syrians who protested against the regime, but if you want to tell the story of the Syrian war, the whole truth should be told. Those who were too quick to carry arms and use violence only helped the regime and hurt the citizens they were supposed to protect.

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July 21st, 2013, 7:29 pm

 

335. don said:

Must view

Americas Book Of Secrets 2-E7-Presidential Cover Ups

The Obama/Hillary Benghazi/Syria Covert Operation Cover UP

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July 21st, 2013, 7:53 pm

 

336. don said:

PM ‘not pushed by wife on Syria’ hahahahahahahahaha!

Downing Street has sought to play down reports that David Cameron was being pushed to take a more proactive stance on Syria by his wife, Samantha.

The Times quoted a Cabinet minister as saying Mrs Cameron was the “biggest explanation” for her husband’s hawkish response to the conflict in Syria.

Laugh more here

http://www.epworthbells.co.uk/news/national-news/pm-not-pushed-by-wife-on-syria-1-5856393

Cameron is the butt joke of world leaders

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July 21st, 2013, 7:57 pm

 

337. Tara said:

Congratulation to the FSA for the liberation of strategic Khan al Asal in western Aleppo.

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July 21st, 2013, 8:18 pm

 

338. ghufran said:

25 civilians were killed in Ariha-Idleb when a mortar or a missile exploded in a busy market. rebels and regime sources exchanged blame for the massacre.
Ariha is not totally controlled by either side and it is still a battle field.

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July 21st, 2013, 8:44 pm

 

339. don said:

The Middle East: A Powder Keg For World War III

Egypt has taken center stage along with the Syrians. The United States is caught in a bind as it is not sure who to support or where to give its foreign policy money. President Obama is touting democracy but this message takes on a hollow tone as the Egyptian military installed a new leader and began rounding up its ousted president and his supporters. Additionally, Egypt has its own private version of a time bomb with joblessness among people under 30 years of age at 74%! Overall unemployment is listed at 13.2% but like the United States, it measures only those people currently seeking work and has written off the hundreds of thousands of people that have given up seeking employment. So whether it is President Mubarek, President Morsi, or the Muslim Brotherhood, more than 1 million people have swelled the ranks of Egyptian unemployment since 2010. Eight out of 10 jobless Egyptians are under 30. Egypt faces years of unrest until this problem can be addressed.

Unless there is some resolution to the Palestinian situation soon, sheer demographics will make Gaza and the West Bank explode. The high birth rate among Palestinians is the core issue facing Israel. There are 11.6 million Palestinians, 4.4 million live within the East Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem and 1.4 million live within Israel itself. In a few decades, Arabs will outnumber Jews within the land of Israel. Israel cannot keep the Palestinians bottled up in a geographical prison for long. Something will have to be decided or there will be a civil war within Israel on a gigantic scale.

http://www.catholicjournal.us/2013/07/21/the-middle-east-a-powder-keg-for-world-war-iii/

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July 21st, 2013, 9:12 pm

 

340. zoo said:

25 Civilians Killed, 85 Injured By Syrian Militants

http://www.bernama.com/bernama/v7/wn/newsworld.php?id=965053

DAMASCUS, July 22 (Bernama) — Up to 25 Syrian civilians were killed and over 85 others injured Sunday when Syrian armed opposition fired in the northwestern province of Idlib.

The victims, including women and children, were killed when the group fired a homemade missile at one of Syrian army’s military points in Areha town, Xinhua news agency quoted pro-government Sham FM radio as saying.

However, the missile missed its target and hit a fairground in the town instead.

A local witness said the massacre was committed by the Free Syrian Army.

Oppositional activists said government troops had shelled the town, killing 19 people and injuring many others.

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July 21st, 2013, 9:50 pm

 

341. majedkhaldoun said:

I found it stupid to say the revolution started violent because of one or three incidents, the fact is that 99.9 % of the demonstrations early in this revolution were very peaceful, while the regime responded to such peaceful demonstrations by violence in over 90% of the time.
The fact is that this regime is brutal ,murderous animalistic regime
And those who defend this regime are co murderous.

Another massacre in Banyas by the regime today.

It is difficult to believe the violence in Syria will take 10 years as some american generals and british general have been saying.

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July 21st, 2013, 9:55 pm

 

342. Ghufran said:

The battle to dominate Aleppo will be long and bloody, I was hoping that fighting parties will accept this fact and work for a cease fire but it looks like this war is likely to continue for a long time, people who want a cease fire may be in the majority but they do not have a voice. It is simply unacceptable to powerful backers of rebels and the regime to allow one side to win decisively. Rebels would have won by now if they had the support of most Syrians but they simply do not. Assad’s fire power is not enough to explain how he and his regime survives this long. Assad’s enemies did not provide Syrians with a good alternative, the sooner rebels realize this the faster this war can end. I see no chance for this regime to be able to rule Syria but I also do not see a real scenario where rebels can impose their will over areas they failed to control after 2 years of continuous fighting, this makes it more likely that Syria will either become another Afghanistan or get partitioned, at least for the near future, Assad does not have enough men to win back the north and the east, and the Kurds are now ready to start the inevitable process of separation, the only winner of this tragic outcome is Israel. What is sad is that many of us have been saying this for 2 years.

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July 21st, 2013, 10:32 pm

 

343. AMEERA said:

لك اهلين بالحلوين لك اهلين بتارا و ين كنت متخبية يا مئمعة؟ يحرق ديبك شو الك وحشة يا ام ليلى.

“طلع القمر

طلع القمرغفي حبيبي
غاب القمر وعي حبيبي
حليت ليالي السهر يللا يغيب القمر”

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July 21st, 2013, 10:40 pm

 

344. AMEERA said:

في حدا عندو خبر شو صار بمخيم اليرموك للفلاسطينية؟

عم يقولو النظام ضربن بالكيماوي بس مو معئول لانو ما عاد حدا ضل هنيك اصلن.

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July 21st, 2013, 10:43 pm

 

345. elian said:

I am still waiting for someone to explain on this site and prefer Mr. Landis, all the comments made by the Obama administration and others that Assad days are numbered.
it has not looked that way for months and probably Assad will still rule Syria into 2014.
Does this signal secrets that the west doesn’t want Assad to be removed but do the dirty work to help Israel in the region.

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July 21st, 2013, 10:55 pm

 

346. revenire said:

NATO: Assad, Russia and Iran are prevailing in Syria
Special to WorldTribune.com
http://www.worldtribune.com/2013/07/19/nato-assad-russia-and-iran-are-prevailing-in-syria/

LONDON — NATO has determined that President Bashar Assad ended any short- or mid-term threat from the Sunni revolt in Syria.

Officials said NATO, in consultation with Western intelligence agencies, assessed that the Sunni rebel campaign against Assad failed over the last three months.

The officials said Assad’s military, backed by Iran and Russia, would capture major rebel strongholds with the exception of northern Syria by the end of 2013.

“Currently, the tide seems to have shifted in his [Assad] favor,” Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, said on July 18.

Officials said the assessment led to a decision by several leading NATO countries to halt lethal weapons shipments to the Sunni rebels. They cited Britain, France and the United States.

“The rebel campaign has deteriorated dramatically since April and now it’s not clear who is fighting Assad or who is just getting a paycheck,” an official said.

The NATO assessment asserted that most of the Syrians involved in the revolt — including those in the Free Syrian Army — were no longer fighting the Assad regime. Instead, the bulk of combat has been assumed by foreign fighters, most of them affiliated with Al Qaida.“

They [Syrian rebels] are frustrated and angry at the world for not stepping in and helping,” U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said during a tour of a Syrian refugee camp in Jordan. “I explained to them I don’t think it’s as cut and dry and as simple as some of them look at it.”

In mid-July, both Britain and France signaled their opposition to any weapons shipments to the Syrian rebels. Officials said the two countries, which until June were the most supportive of arming the opposition, determined that any major weapons shipments could end up with Al Qaida militias.

“There are certain conditions that need to be met before eventually sending weapons,” French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said.

“For now France has not modified its position. We have the ability to do it, but we haven’t delivered any lethal weapons.”

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July 22nd, 2013, 12:00 am

 

347. revenire said:

Elian it is really very simple: the people who said Assad’s days were numbered are fools.

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July 22nd, 2013, 12:04 am

 

348. zoo said:

#343 Elian

It indicates that the ‘revolution’ simply failed because of many factors, the most important one is that the Syrian army remained loyal to the government.
As the Syrian army represents a cross section of the population, therefore we can say that a large majority of the Syrians have abandoned the revolution especially when they saw the alternatives proposed by the opposition: A Moslem Brotherhood or Islamist dictatorship under the direct control of the USA and the Oil sheikhs.

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July 22nd, 2013, 12:17 am

 

349. majedkhaldoun said:

Ghufran said
“Rebels would have won by now if they had the support of most Syrians but they simply do not. Assad’s fire power is not enough to explain how he and his regime survives this long”
This is false statement
For the rebels to win they have to have enough weapons,and anti tanks and anti aircrafts, the west has been withholding weapons from the rebels giving just enough to cause stalemate, the west withhold weapons if rebels win, and supply them again if Assad wins some battle, the west is like the devil, they prefer that this war take long,so Syria ends up very very weak.
Assad weapons are huge and constant supply keeps getting in from Russia and Persia, and when the regime was about to collapse HA and Iraq militia sent troops, the west like the idea that HA is involved, in few months it will get weakened,by losing thousands of its members

We have Daniel Pipe doctrine, stalement, balance till Syria is destroyed

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July 22nd, 2013, 12:33 am

 

350. revenire said:

In a few months Hezbollah will lose 1000s of fighters? Ha ha ha.

Brother please, my stitches can’t handle the laughing.

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July 22nd, 2013, 12:44 am

 

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