The Issue Of Foreign Intervention – US Calls on Assad to “Step Down Now”. Robert Ford, making a difference (By Ehsani)

As Syria approaches the seven month anniversary of its conflict, the following is becoming clear:

1-    The Syrian military and internal security apparatus is a cohesive group that seems unlikely to disintegrate anytime soon. There is no doubt that some desertions have taken place.  But these have been too sporadic to make a noticeable rupture in the army’s control over the Syrian territory.

2-    The defining moment in the past seven months came on the eve of Ramadan.  Hama was steadily moving away from central control.  The sensitivities of moving the army into Hama on that day were not lost to Damascus. In the end, the risk of waiting was deemed too high. Leaving Hama the way it was for the whole month of Ramadan would have made any attempt to retake the city that much harder to accomplish thereafter.  No one in the Syrian leadership wanted to have another Benghazi in Syria. This is why the tanks moved into Daraa earlier and Rastan just recently.  Damascus will not allow any territory to fall outside of its control.

3-    Armed with a strong and cohesive army that has been able to exert full territorial control over the whole country, the opposition must by now be aware that defeating this regime militarily is unlikely to happen without foreign help.  Syria is not Tunisia or Egypt. The popular uprising that was going to sweep away the Syrian regime was an attractive option in theory. Members of the Syrian opposition saw it as the way forward. In practice, however, it is yet to yield any discernible result.

4-    This leaves foreign help.  Presumably, this  can mean one of three things:

  •  Foreign Boots on the ground.
  •  No Fly-Zone.
  •  Arming internal groups with the hope toppling the regime militarily.

The latter option is precisely why the Syrian leadership has made sure that no territory falls outside its control.  Such an area would simply act as a base and an address for foreign arm shipments and would constitute a Syrian Bhangazi.  Any foreign shipments that have come in so far seem to have been sporadic and light enough not to pose any legitimate strategic risk to the country’s armed forces. Indeed, the Syrian army and security forces are so superior in numbers and firepower that it seems almost impossible for this strategy to ultimately work.  The opposition is unlikely to defeat the army regardless of how many arms it can unilaterally source from outside.

In an exclusive report entitled – War only option to topple Syrian leader, Colonel Riad al-As’aad seems to call for the international community to provide army rebels with weapons and enforce a no-fly zone. He concludes by saying:

“If they don’t give it to us, we will fight with our nails until the regime is toppled. I tell Bashar al-Assad, the people are stronger than you.”

The fact is that the Colonel realizes that arming the rebels from outside needs both a Syrian address (Rastan or jabal al zawye) AND a No-Fly zone.

But what is a No-Fly zone?  The concept seems a little confusing in the sense that the Syrian air force has not exactly been busy fighting the insurgents with chemical weapons (Iraq) or the like.  One can think of this concept as the prelude or the poor cousin of the first option which involves sending foreign boots on the ground.  The No-Fly zone, should it happen, would presumably involve NATO targeting and degrading Syria’s extensive surface to air anti aircraft missiles.

Saddam survived everything that was thrown at him, including a No-Fly zone, for years till the foreign boots showed up.  Once the latter happened, his regime simply crumbled in days.  While the initial western success was intoxicating, what came after was enough to convince even the most hawkish elements in Washington that a repeat of that experiment in Syria now would be incomprehensible.  The country does not have the financial, political or military stomach for this adventure at the moment.

The newly formed Syrian National Council faces a dilemma when it comes to foreign intervention.  Quite simply, the opposition knows that it is nearly impossible to topple this regime without foreign help. Yet, they also know that inviting foreign military intervention into Syria is political suicide. What you get as a result is a muddled policy response and half-pregnant answers.

To be sure, no foreign intervention has been the consistent party line.  During the latest interview with Aljazeera, Mr. Ghalyoun called for “international observers to help protect civilians”. While that does not sound like direct foreign military intervention, it surely is a prelude to one.  What would happen if a team of international observers (UNIFIL?) were shot at or killed? Would the international community have to send real armed forced to protect the observers next?

The Syrian National Council is likely to keep dancing around this issue and avoid commenting on the subject directly. This is because they are in a catch-22 situation.  As this conflict carries forward, the time will come when the SNC will have to face that fork in the road and convincingly describe how it intends to bring the slogan of ”Isqat al Nizam” into reality on the ground.

[end of commentary]

Kurdish opponent of Assad shot dead – Financial Times

Though the exact circumstances surrounding Mr Tammo’s death are unknown, suspicion immediately fell on the regime, and could widen the opposition to Mr Assad’s rule. Protests were said to have broken out in Kurdish areas on Friday night.

“They’re very, very angry,” said Massoud Akko, a Kurdish human rights activist and journalist living in Norway. “He was a very good man, very clever, respected by all Syrian people, not just the Kurdish.”

Mr Tammo was spokesman for one of the Syrian Kurds’ 14 illegal political parties, and was in prison until earlier this year. He was also a member of the recently formed Syrian National Council, the umbrella group of the opposition.

Although there have been anti-regime protests in the Kurdish areas, many expected the community to mobilise more fully than it has so far, given that Syria’s Kurdish minority, which forms nearly 10 per cent of the population, is the only group with a history of serious, organised opposition to the Assad government.

The regime has sought to co-opt the Kurds since protests began by offering citizenship to approximately 300,000 who were left stateless by a 1962 census, and there have been rumours that Kurdish politicians are in dialogue with the regime, but these cannot be confirmed. Mr Tammo was reported to have spoken out against some Kurdish politicians, saying they had “contributed to the weakness of the Kurdish opposition”.

According to Mr Akko, the death of Mr Tammo could be a turning point for the Kurdish community’s participation in the uprising.

“If the death doesn’t take them to the streets, I will be sure there is negotiation between the regime and other Kurdish parties,” said Mr Akko.

Riad Seif, another leading opposition figure, was beaten by gunmen outside a mosque in the Damascus suburb of Midan on Friday, according to opposition activists, and was rushed to hospital.

The US state department described Mr Tammo’s death, together with the beating of Mr Seif as “a clear escalation of regime tactics”.

The UN said earlier this week that 2,900 people had been killed in the regime’s response to protests, which broke out in March. UN experts said on Friday that 187 of those killed were children.

US calls on Assad to “step down now”AFP

WASHINGTON — The White House on Friday called on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to “step down now,” warning he was taking his country down a “very dangerous path.”

In a statement, spokesman Jay Carney condemned the killing of Kurdish opposition leader Meshaal Tamo as well as the beating of a prominent Syrian activist, saying it showed “again that the Assad regime’s promises for dialogue and reform are hollow.”

“The United States strongly rejects violence directed against peaceful oppositionists wherever it occurs, and stands in solidarity with the courageous people of Syria who deserve their universal rights,” Carney said.

“Today’s attacks demonstrate the Syrian regime’s latest attempts to shut down peaceful opposition inside Syria. President Assad must step down now before taking his country further down this very dangerous path.”

Tamo, 53, a member of the newly formed Syrian National Council (SNC) opposition grouping, was killed when four masked gunmen stormed his house in Qamishli in the north and opened fire.

His son and another fellow activist in the Kurdish Future Party were wounded, activists said. Kurds are a minority ethnic group in Syria.

Former MP Riad Seif, meanwhile, was also attacked and beaten in the street.

The US State Department earlier charged that the Assad regime was escalating its tactics against the opposition with bold, daylight attacks on its leaders.

“This is a clear escalation of regime tactics,” State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland told reporters, referring to reports of Tamo’s murder.

In the past months, she said: “We’ve obviously had a number of opposition folks arrested. We have had reports of torture, beatings, etc, but not on the streets in broad daylight.

The tactic is “clearly designed to intimidate others,” Nuland said.

Nuland meanwhile welcomed reported remarks from Russian President Dmitry Medvedev who told Assad on Friday to either reform or resign.

“That is very positive,” she said, adding that she had not seen the statement.

“But as we have said, we want to see more countries join us not only in increasing the political and rhetorical pressure on the regime, but also tightening the economic noose,” Nuland said.

“And there are more steps that can be taken by countries like Russia to up the pressure on Assad,” she said.

Robert Ford, making a difference in Syria - David Ignatius (W.Post)

If you’re wondering what diplomats can do in an era of pulverizing military force and instantaneous communications, consider the case of Robert Ford, the U.S. ambassador to Syria. He has been meeting with the Syrian opposition around the country, risking his neck — and in the process infuriating the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

Ford is an example of the free-form diplomacy the United States will need as it pulls back its troops from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He’s projecting American power quietly — through counseling the protesters and networking — rather than trying to wrap the opposition in the American flag, which would be the kiss of death for them.

I spoke with Ford last week by telephone, which is, at the moment, unfortunately the only way that most U.S. journalists can talk to him. He outlined the basic advice he has offered in meetings with opposition leaders, which is to remain peaceful and resist the slide toward sectarian violence.

Ford summarizes his message this way: “Don’t be violent. That’s crucial. If you do that, you’re playing into the hands of the government.”

And yet, as Ford notes, sectarian killing “is certainly on the upswing” in Syria. It’s a frightening cycle of attack and retaliation, reminiscent of the Sunni-vs.-Shiite mayhem that enveloped Iraq in 2006. The blood feud here is between Syria’s Sunni majority and the Alawite minority that has ruled since Assad’s father took power in 1970.

Wherever he goes, Ford asks practical questions — pressing the activists about incentives for Syrian business or about reforming the government budget. He counsels the embattled protesters against military action — which would only bring on a vicious civil war. He thinks time works against Assad, if protesters can avoid the trap of sectarian conflict.

It’s a narrow ledge that Ford is walking. But it’s good to see an American diplomat in the lead for a change, instead of the U.S. military.

Comments (747)


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651. Haytham Khoury said:

وائل الحافظ : الثورة السورية هي كميلاد المسيح وسوف تكون حدث تاريخي يتم الـتأريخ به .

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October 11th, 2011, 4:24 pm

 

652. OFF THE WALL said:

Dear Haytham
Your new post about the diplomatic challenges facing the Syrian opposition is outstanding. I really liked what you had to say. Thanks for taking the time to write it.

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October 11th, 2011, 4:25 pm

 

653. Khalid Tlass said:

Latest news is that 2 Iranians have been arrested in the US for plotting to kill the Saudi Ambassador.

Nuke Karbala.

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October 11th, 2011, 4:38 pm

 

654. Some guy no longer in damascus said:

It’s really funny seeing this “opposition” in Moscow. I think the regime realized that it’s impossible to have a government without an opposition so, they grew their own breed.
Lol we call them معارضة بس منحبك

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October 11th, 2011, 4:53 pm

 

655. Tara said:

Assassination Galvanizes Syria’s Kurdish Minority
by PETER KENYON

http://www.npr.org/2011/10/10/141204660/assassination-galvanizes-syrias-kurdish-minority

…..

KENYON: With the assassination of veteran Kurdish politician Mashaal Tammo, activists say the regime has galvanized a Kurdish minority that has largely stayed out of the fight so far. Syrian Kurdish activist Abu Rahman was imprisoned this spring with Tammo. He says the regime feared Tammo because he was the rare Kurdish leader who fought for the rights of all Syrians, not just Kurds.

ABU RAHMAN: (Through translator) His last message to the guys in jail was to set aside your old Kurdish slogans; just go out and join the protests, whether they’re Arabs, Kurds, anyone who’s opposing this regime. This is our fight too.

….

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October 11th, 2011, 5:24 pm

 

656. Haytham Khoury said:

موضوع التصويت:

هل يعبر المجلس الوطني السوري عن:
الخيارات النسبة عدد الأصوات
أجندات خارجية
10.0%
2331

الشعب السوري
90.0%
21056

إجمالي المصوتين 23387
نتيجة التصويت لا تعبر عن رأي الجزيرة وإنما تعبر عن رأي الأعضاء المشاركين فيه

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October 11th, 2011, 5:27 pm

 

657. Haytham Khoury said:

@ Off The Wall #652.

Thank you very much. I sent it to Gahlioun yesterday, while he was in Moscow. He confronted the Russian with their manipulative schemes.

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October 11th, 2011, 5:29 pm

 

658. Dale Andersen said:

From the news, heavy fighting in Homs

On the lighter side, a Homsi joke…

A not-the-sharpest-knife-in-the-drawer Homsi named Hafez was arrested and accused of stealing a cow from Sheik Abdullah’s farm. At the trial, Hafez’ attorney put up a spirited defense, claiming Hafez did not steal the Sheik’s cow. It was impossible, he said. In fact, on the day of the theft, Hafez was clear across town, caring for his sick grandmother. The attorney went on to say, “This is just another example of how the judicial system persecutes innocent Homsis to the degree that they are accused of crimes they never committed. I demand that Hafez be acquitted!”

The Judge was so moved by the attorney’s defense that he had Hafez stand up while he publicly berated the arresting officer. He then asked Hafez if he had anything to say.

“Thank you, your honor. Do I get to keep the cow?”

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October 11th, 2011, 5:31 pm

 

659. Tara said:

Khamenei not only shy but also a murderer.   

Iran embarrassed by Revolutionary Guard death in Syria

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/concoughlin/100109105/iran-embarrassed-by-revolutionary-guard-death-in-syria/

By Con Coughlin World Last updated: October 5th, 2011
……
But this clip provides deeply embarrassing evidence of just how involved the Iranians are in helping the Assad regime to suppress the opposition, as it shows the identity card of a Revolutionary Guards officer who was caught by Syrian rebels and killed.

……

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October 11th, 2011, 5:33 pm

 

660. Areal said:

Oct 10, 2011 18:15 Moscow Time

Today is the first day of the Syrian opposition delegation’s visit to Moscow. Among the delegates are representative of several secular parties and the Christian clergy.

This is the opposition’s “peace-wing”, which has been holding a dialogue with the authorities and insists on solving the crisis by carrying out reforms actively. This is the difference between it and other opposition groups that have established canals of supplying weapons to Syria. These weapons fall in the hands of the radical groups opposing the Assad regime, who often trigger conflicts and carry out terrorist attacks. One such event was an attack launched on the “Stroitransgaz” Russian company’s branch in Homs. According to the Russian Presidential envoy for cooperation with Africa, Mikhail Margelov, this was how the radical opposition expressed its dissatisfaction over the use of the veto by Russia against a Western resolution at the UN Security Council.

The situation in and around Syria after Russia blocked the resolution will be a key issues at the Syrian opposition’s talks in Moscow. Head of the delegation, secretary General of the National Committee for Unity of the Syrian Communist Party, Qadri Jamil, pointed to this aspect in an interview with the Voice of Russia:

“Before our visit, Russia vetoed a resolution on Syria at the UN Security Council. Unlike the opposition in other countries, we came to Moscow to express our gratitude to Russia for its move. In this case, the use of veto has really protected civilians and averted a foreign invasion of our country. The military invasion of Iraq and Lebanon caused only disaster and deepened the problems and forced back the development of the countries for several generations. We wished to see Russia strengthen its position in solving the Syrian crisis and continue to make efforts to this end. Russia’s position meets the interests of the Syrian people. Since Russia averted a foreign invasion, the situation in Syria will improve fast and easily,” Qadri Jamil said.

This is not the first visit to Moscow of the Syrian opposition. They visited Russia in June and September. Russia is doing its best to help the opposition, establish a dialogue with the authorities and find compromises.

Regime change dangerous for Syria, says opposition spokesman
Tags: Syria, News, Society, Syrian opposition , Bashar Assad , World

Oct 11, 2011 23:19 Moscow Time

Opponents of Syrian President Bashar Assad should seek radical change, rather than overthrowing of the current regime. This was stated in an interview for “Rusiya al-Yaum” TV channel by Syrian opposition representative Mohammed al- Aboud.

“In calling to overthrow the existing regime, we run the risk of plunging the country into real chaos,” – said al-Aboud. According to him, rather than overthrowing the regime, Syrian society needs to eliminate government corruption, put an end to violence, revive trust between the government and society.

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October 11th, 2011, 5:33 pm

 

661. Ya Mara Ghalba said:

11 Oct 2011. China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Weimin “again called on the Syrian government to quickly carry out its commitment of reform.” http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2011-10/11/c_131185267.htm

24 Sep 2011. Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov asserted “the necessity of instant implementation of the reforms which the Syrian leadership had announced.” http://www.sana.sy/eng/337/2011/09/24/371218.htm

9 Oct 2011: Syria’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Abdelfattah Ammoura stressed “the Syrian people are aware, educated and patient.” http://www.sana.sy/eng/22/2011/10/09/374494.htm

PS: When is the upcoming Central Dialogue Conference in Damascus scheduled for? Can nobody shed some light?

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October 11th, 2011, 5:39 pm

 

662. Haytham Khoury said:

@ Areal # 660

“several secular parties”: false. only two very small ones and do not have contact with the people on the ground.

“the Christian clergy”: false, they took with them unknown priest, who represents only himself.

“other opposition groups that have established canals of supplying weapons to Syria.”: complete lie. I challenge you to prove it.

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October 11th, 2011, 5:53 pm

 

663. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

“……….PS: When is the upcoming Central Dialogue Conference in Damascus scheduled for? Can nobody shed some light?….”

ليش شو ناطر يطلع منه ؟ المبين انو بشار ما يعطي نصف بوصة.

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October 11th, 2011, 5:55 pm

 

664. Ya Mara Ghalba said:

The following is a recycle of an earlier post at SyriaComment. If you’ve seen it before you can give it the “thumbs down”.

In next year’s parliamentary election contest in Syria some opposition parties are going to be alleging that the Assad government has been guilty of corruption. When a relatively unknown opposition party repeatedly says the government is corrupt, this can strengthen the opposition’s public image because it’s implicitly repeating “we are not corrupt ourselves”. However, when the evidence of corruption is disputable, experience in other countries shows that raising corruption allegations ultimately results in electoral failure for the opposition. Corruption means violation of law. If the accusations of the opposition are true, yet haven’t been prosecuted in the courts, then the legal system is corrupt as well. It’s hard for a voter to be convinced that the prosecutors and other law enforcement people are not earnestly trying to do their jobs. It is hard to believe the government publicly declares the laws are righteous while secretly violating them, with numbers of government workers involved in coverups, when reliable evidence of the corruption is not available and the people making the accusations have dubious credibility and ulterior motives. The government and its defenders will say the rival party’s accusations are scurrilous falsehoods. Anybody who disseminates scurrilous falsehoods is stupid and untrustworthy if not a liar.

A challenger trying to play the “corruption card” against the incumbent is making a bad move because (a) the voters who already believe the incumbent’s personnel are rife with corruption will be already very disinclined to vote for the incumbents and what they would like to hear are other reasons to vote for the opposition, and (b) the voters who don’t already believe the incumbent’s personnel are rife with corruption won’t have their minds changed by the electioneering (assuming the evidence of corruption is disputable), and this tends to undermine the perceived trustworthiness of the challenger, not the incumbent.

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October 11th, 2011, 5:56 pm

 

665. majedkhaldoun said:

Michael Kilo support the SNC,he met in Paris with members of SNC

http://alquds.co.uk/index.asp?fname=latest/data/2011-10-11-14-55-34.htm
It is obvious that Mr. Kilo and Mr Fayez Sara support the SNC
and Kilo said if there is foreign interference the regime is to blame

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October 11th, 2011, 6:04 pm

 

666. Tara said:

Ebullient Turkey ignores critics in Iran and Syria but worries about Kurds
Thomas Seibert
Oct 12, 2011

http://www.thenational.ae/news/worldwide/europe/ebullient-turkey-ignores-critics-in-iran-and-syria-but-worries-about-kurds?pageCount=2 

ISTANBUL // As it bursts with self-confidence about its growing role in the Middle East, Turkey is unlikely to change its policies in the region as a result of sharp criticism from Syria and Iran. But Ankara is concerned about efforts by its neighbours to stir up Kurdish unrest, officials and analysts say.

“Our country’s prestige is growing by the day,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister, said in a speech yesterday, adding he had witnessed that development himself during his recent trip to Egypt, Tunisia and Libya, where he enjoyed enthusiastic receptions and “indescribable affection”, as he put it.

Mr Erdogan shrugged off last weekend’s rebukes from Damascus and Tehran. The government of Bashar Al Assad, the Syrian president, warned its neighbours against recognising a Syrian opposition group that was established in Turkey, while Iran said the Turkish government should stop promoting its own version of a secular Muslim state and market economy as a model for Arab Spring countries.

In a veiled reference to those complaints, Mr Erdogan said during his televised speech to parliamentary deputies of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) that he was sorry to see that Turkey was the target of “unjust criticism”, but that his country would stick to its policies.

“Turkey will do what its own principles and national interests call for and will continue along this path without diverting from its agenda,” Mr Erdogan said. He underlined that undemocratic regimes in the region could not count on Turkish support. “In our book, there can be no legitimate government that is not based on the people and that uses violence.”
….
“There is a fear that Syria will support the PKK,” said Semih Idiz, a foreign policy columnist for the Milliyet newspaper. He was referring to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a rebel group that has been fighting for Kurdish self-rule in Turkey since 1984. Syria gave shelter to the PKK leadership in the 1990s.

Officials in Ankara are also doubtful about Iran’s role in the Kurdish conflict. A Turkish newspaper reported yesterday that Iran had recently captured Murat Karayilan, a top PKK commander wanted by Ankara, and set him free after two days instead of extraditing him to Turkey. Idris Naim Sahin, Turkey’s interior minister, said the government would comment on the report “when the time comes”, the NTV news channel reported.
…..
Turkey has begun to implement some measures against Syria, such as a ban on all arms shipments to Syria via Turkish airspace or territory and an increased support for Syrian opposition groups. Representatives of the opposition Syrian National Council (SNC) have asked for a meeting with Turkish foreign ministry officials, the Today’s Zaman newspaper reported yesterday. Such a meeting would help the SNC, which was formed in Istanbul in August, to gain international status, a development that Damascus wants to avoid.

Turkish foreign ministry sources said yesterday they could not confirm whether the meeting would go ahead.
…. 
While Syria is concerned about Turkish support for the SNC, Iran is uneasy about Mr Erdogan’s promotion of the Turkish brand of secularism to the countries of the Arab Spring.

“Turkey is a democracy,” a senior foreign ministry official said when asked for his response to the Iranian criticism. Mustafa Akyol, a newspaper commentator and the author of a newly-released book, Islam without Extremes: A Muslim Case for Liberty, said in a Twitter message that Iran had slammed Turkey “for all the good reasons”.

Mr Idiz, the foreign policy columnist, said he did not expect Turkey to stop extolling its own model because of Iran’s complaints. Mr Idiz told The National yesterday that Turkey was not particularly concerned that memories of Ottoman rule in the Middle East could be used to undermine its present-day policies as following “imperial intentions” in the region.

“What they have been promoting for Egypt and Syria are very much European values,” such as secularism and individual freedoms, Mr Idiz said about Turkish government officials. Only Arab nationalists were likely to try to play the Ottoman card against modern Turkey, he said.            

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October 11th, 2011, 6:04 pm

 

667. Haytham Khoury said:

بيان تجمع القوى الوطنية في السويداء
by تجمع القوى الوطنية في السويداء on Tuesday, October 11, 2011 at 3:32pm

بيان

تجمع القوى الوطنية في السويداء

نحن فعاليات سياسية وثقافية واجتماعية ولجان تنسيقية في محافظة السويداء نعلن توافقنا على العمل معاً تحت اسم: تجمع القوى الوطنية في السويداء، كما نعلن أننا جزء لا يتجزأ من الثورة السورية المجيدة التي دخلت شهرها السابع وما زال السوريون يقدمون الشهداء كوكبة تلو الأخرى، عاقدي العزم على الوصول إلى حقهم في الحرية والكرامة مهما تكن التضحيات كبيرة.

خلال الأشهر الماضية قُدمت للنظام مبادرات ونصائح عديدة من الداخل والخارج، وأعطيت له مهل زمنية كافية، لكي يعيد النظر بسياساته القائمة على الخيار الأمني، لكنه لم يستجب لصوت الحكمة والعقل، بل أوغل عميقاً في ممارساته العنيفة والوحشية، حتى أصبحت الضحايا بالآلاف، وأعداد الجرحى والمعتقلين والمفقودين والمهجرين تفوق الحصر. أضحت سوريا جراء ذلك في خطر محدق، فمقدرات البلد تهدر على الخيار الأمني العسكري، والعقوبات الاقتصادية تشد الخناق على أعناق المواطنين وتدفع باقتصاد البلد إلى الهاوية، وجيش سوريا يواجه شعبها، وخطاب الفتنة والمؤامرة يهدد وحدتها الوطنية وكيان شعبها بالتمزق. وهذا كله يؤكد بأن النظام الحاكم غير قابل وغير قادر على الإصلاح، وأنه بات عقبة أمام أي تغيير حقيقي ينتقل بالبلاد من الاستبداد إلى الحرية والديمقراطية، لذلك:

أولاً، على النظام الحاكم أن يرحل نزولاً عند رغبة الشعب السوري الذي أسقط النظام سياسياً وأخلاقياً، وذلك حقناً لدماء السوريين، وحفاظاً على مقدرات البلد، وصوناً لوحدتها الوطنية ووحدة أراضيها، وحرصاً على هيبة جيشها وتماسكه، وحفاظاً على الدولة ومؤسساتها من الانهيار، وكي لا تتحول سوريا إلى ورقة في مهب الريح تتلاعب بها إرادات الدول كيفما تشاء.

ثانياً، إننا نؤيد المجلس الوطني السوري، وندعو هيئة التنسيق الوطنية وجميع أطياف المعارضة، في الداخل والخارج، لاستكمال تمثيلها في المجلس الوطني والبناء على ما تم إنجازه والتسامي فوق الحساسيات الحزبية، وأن تقف صفاً واحداً إلى جانب ثورة الشعب السلمية، وتعمل على تشكيل الجسم السياسي الموحد لهذه الثورة. لقد أصبح الوقوف إلى جانب ثورة شعبنا وتبني مطالبها واجباً وطنياً وأخلاقياً ملزماً لا يحتمل التأجيل ولا التأويل، ويرقى فوق أي خلافات أيديولوجية أو حساسيات شخصية أو نوازع ذاتية، وهذا ما يعمل النظام على تعزيزه بين صفوف المعارضة لكي تبقى منقسمة على ذاتها ومتفرقة، وعاجزة عن إيجاد بديل له.

ثالثاً، إننا نؤكد للنظام أن السويداء لم ولن تكون خارج الركب الوطني للسوريين جميعاً، ومهما حاول النظام أن يكبلها، ويقطع أوصالها بحواجزه الأمنية، ويجيش أهلها بعضهم ضد بعض، ويحيدها عن ثورة الشعب السوري فإنها لن تكون ورقة بيده في حسابات الفتنة والفرقة اللتين حاول جاهداً أن يبني ممارساته عليهما. إن مصدر الشرعية هو الشعب، ولن يستطيع نظام أن يضمن شرعيته وبقاءه إذا ما استخدم القوة وواجه الشعب بالحديد والنار، واستهتر بكرامة أبناء شعبه وحياتهم.

المجد والخلود لأرواح الشهداء

عاشت سوريا حرة ديمقراطية

الموقعون حسب الترتيب الأبجدي :

1. تنسيقية محافظة السويداء .

2. تنسيقية محافظة السويداء / شهبا .

3. تنسيقية محافظة السويداء / صلخد .

4. حركة البعثيين الأحرار في السويداء .

5. فرع الاتحاد الاشتراكي الديمقراطي العربي في السويداء .

6. فرع حزب البعث الديمقراطي في السويداء .

7. فرع الحزب اليمقراطي السوري في السويداء .

8. لجنة إعلان دمشق في السويداء .

9. لجنة العمل الوطني .

10. لجنة المهندسين الأحرار في السويداء .

11. لجنة محامي سوريا من أجل الحرية في السويداء .

12. مجموعة من الأدباء والفنانين والمستقلين في السويداء .

13. لجنة السويداء للتغيير الديموقراطي -المغتربون .

14. منظمة حزب العمال الثوري في السويداء .

15. منظمة حزب الشعب الديمقراطي في السويداء .

16. نساء السويداء من أجل التغيير الديموقراطي .

السويداء 10/ 10/ 2011

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October 11th, 2011, 6:05 pm

 

668. SANDRO LOEWE said:

Rumors about a coming explosion in central Damascus organized by Ali Mamlouk. It would be atributed to the MB salafis terrorist sionist conspiration in order to show good will syrians and intl community how bad the opposition is. I hope it does not take place. If I owned I building in central Damascus and I had denied a purchase offer from Makhlouf mafia tonight I could not sleep quiet well tonight.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:06 pm

 

669. zoo said:

632 Haytham
“The political opposition is not giving any such order and does not agree on such practice.”

The “political” opposition, the SNC has no control whatsoever on the criminals who know exactly what to do to create chaos that serves their own agenda ( that temporarily matches the one of the SNC: Delaying the reforms and weakening the regime)

By systematically putting all the blames on the government even when the murder is dubious like the one of the son of the Mufti, the SNC is tacitly encouraging more murders.

In my view, unless they make a clear declaration that they oppose violence on BOTH sides and stop blaming the government for any murder under vague assumptions, I consider they are accomplice to the assassinations and totally discredited to bring peace to this country.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:13 pm

 

670. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

Interrogation @ 664

Do you really know where Syria is on the Map?
Have you ever met a real Syrian?
When is your flight back from la la land?
Please bring back with you the other fellow who keeps shouting Reality

Leave SNP and geo-weapon fella back there.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:21 pm

 

671. zoo said:

Erdogan loosing his temper again.. This time to Sarkozy:

“You should give advice first to yourself and behave yourself,” Erdoğan said in reference to France’s colonial past.

“If you fail to think big and choose to make petty calculations out of economic concern, you should know that Turkey is not an easy bite to swallow,” Erdoğan said, slamming Sarkozy’s comments, which were made in Yerevan last week.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=turkish-gov8217t-opposition-join-in-sarkozy-slamming-2011-10-11

Turkey’s EU Minister Egemen Bağış called French President Nicolas Sarkozy “totally helpless” ..
It would be better… if Mr. Sarkozy abandons the role of historian and looks for the ways to solve the economic problems of the European Union, of which his country is a membe.” Bağış said, calling Sarkozy’s recent remarks “attempts to abuse the domestic politics” of France. Bağış also said Sarkozy is trying to hide his loss of support in France.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=bagis-calls-french-president-sarkozy-as-8216helpless8217-2011-10-09

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October 11th, 2011, 6:22 pm

 

672. Tara said:

I like men who cries !

I had never seen a crying prime minister before

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=i-had-never-seen-a-crying-prime-minister-before-2011-10-10

Monday, October 10, 2011
mab@hurriyet.com.tr

This weekend, two pictures printed on papers deeply moved the public.

One of these showed the tears the prime minister shed for his mother.

I don’t know about you, but up until now I had not seen any of our leaders crying publicly. It is almost seen as an embarrassment to shed tears, to cry. It is perceived as a sign of weakness. Leaders used to try hard not to show their feelings in public.

….

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October 11th, 2011, 6:33 pm

 

673. zoo said:

A Turkish view of the various groups competing to represent “The Syrian Opposition”

Wanted: The real face of Syria’s opposition

Tuesday, October 11, 2011
İPEK YEZDANİ
ISTANBUL- Hürriyet Daily News
As the European Union applauds the formation of an opposition Syrian National Council, different opposition groups supportive of other political strategies make the Syrian opposition look divided.

The European Union hailed and welcomed the creation of the Syrian National Council (SNC) as a positive step forward yesterday, but it is still not clear who the real representatives of the Syrian opposition are due to divisions between different groups.

“In the last seven months, different groups or committees have been created by different opposition groups both inside and outside Syria. These groups have different strategic views. In fact, anybody who gathered five people together abroad started to say he created a high committee,” according to Halit Hoca, one of the founders of the SNC.

The Turkey-based SNC that announced its formation 10 days ago in Istanbul aims to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Others support the views of Russia, which has called on al-Assad to make reforms, while still others support the line of the Arab League Initiative, which proposes an earlier set of presidential elections to bring an end earlier to al-Assad’s current term that expires in 2014.

The recently-formed SNC includes representatives of the Muslim Brotherhood, the Damascus Declaration, Kurds, Islamists, Syriacs, grassroots activists, some leftists and Arab tribes.

Opposition groups that support the line of Arab League Initiative support the idea of a withdrawal of the army and armed security from civilian areas, dialogue toward a national unity government and then a transition to democratic pluralism.

Another newly formed leftist group represented by Hasan Abdul’azim, chairman of the National Union of the Forces for Democratic Change, supports Russia’s proposal for the solution in Syria, which has called on al-Assad to make reforms.

“Different opposition groups support different ideas, however, we support the idea of toppling the al-Assad regime,” Hoca said. “The Syrian National Council is not in its last shape yet, we will continue including different groups in the council, but so far we represent the largest opposition groups in Syria.”

Some 90 representatives of the Syrian opposition, including members of the SNC, participated in a weekend conference organized by the Olof Palme Center, Agence France-Presse reported. The opposition group leaders agreed that “the international community’s role, demanding to have observers on site, and that minority groups should be given legally binding protection” once a new regime is in place, Jens Orback, the center’s secretary general, told reporters.

Another opposition: Syrian Technocrats’ Alliance

Meanwhile, a group of Syrians opposed to al-Assad have created an alliance of technocrats to help fill a void of expertise within the opposition and lay out a road map for Syria once its current leadership falls, the group’s founder told Reuters on Oct. 10.

Set up by U.S.-based doctor and activist Ayham Haddad and the owner of Orient TV Ghassan Abboud, the “Syrian Alliance for Democracy” was born out of frustration at the slow pace in forming a structured opposition.

“The Syrian opposition [has not been able to] form an organization to represent the people and still disagrees [among themselves],” Haddad said.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:33 pm

 

674. Haytham Khoury said:

@Zoo# 669

A agree with you, We will invite them to do so.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:39 pm

 

675. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

حركة البعثيين الأحرار في السويداء .

5. فرع الاتحاد الاشتراكي الديمقراطي العربي في السويداء .

6. فرع حزب البعث الديمقراطي في السويداء .

7. فرع الحزب اليمقراطي السوري في السويداء .

I take it you all former Baathist shit, you owe us cash, a lots of cash, my advice to you is to stay under cover of the not so democratic Baathist, or be ready to work for us for free until all taht you owe is paid up.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:47 pm

 

676. zoo said:

Tara

It is not unusual to see political personalities crying, including Obama when his grandmother passed away.
http://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/OB-CP586_1103ob_D_20081103192752.jpg

Erdogan is a very emotional guy, as we have seen at many occasions.
While it is touching to see this kind of manifestation in his personal life, I am not sure that bursts of anger with hard words against another president are well received in the diplomatic world.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:47 pm

 

677. majedkhaldoun said:

Look at this staement that AREAL said
Regime change dangerous for Syria

Acctually regime change is good for Syria, it is only dangerous to Assad and his supporters

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October 11th, 2011, 6:50 pm

 

678. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

So many subhumans with intelligence less than a bug making fun of geo weapon. Like if any that have knowledge of these weapons giva dam about what they have to say. That is like my dog barking at me if she did not like my necktie, do I suppose to change it?

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October 11th, 2011, 6:53 pm

 

679. Haytham Khoury said:

@ Majed #665

I am pushing my friends at the SNC to meet with the National Coordination Commission people. I contacted people from NCC, too. We are trying to solve some issues.

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October 11th, 2011, 6:59 pm

 

680. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

“….Do you really know where Syria is on the Map?…..’

I do, it is dump, a barrow full of holes with millions of Syrian hamsters crawling in it. Hell it is world famous for low level of intellect.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:01 pm

 

681. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

What did the dog say

Yaa, as if your mom would let you have a dog in her basement.

Don’t Take your Medication

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October 11th, 2011, 7:02 pm

 

682. Haytham Khoury said:

This is the message that I sent to a friend of mine from the NCC

لهذا أنا أطلب من قيادات هيئة التنسيق تفهم الجهود و التضحيات التي قدمها الأستاذ برهان، و إذا أرادت فعلاً مساندته و مساعدته فعليها الانضمام إلى المجلس. هذا يبدو شديد الالحاح بعدما تبين أن النظام يحاول بمساعدة روسيا تفصيل معارضة على مقاسه.

.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:03 pm

 

683. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

Now you know why SNP would rather see the Baath for another 5 million years than this mentally filthy creatures ruining Syria and turning it into Hamster holes in the ground.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:07 pm

 

684. zoo said:

Syrians Pro-Gov call for a massive Rally “Syria is my Homeland & Bashar is our Leader”

DAMASCUS- About 60 groups of Syrian Pro-Gov activists inside Syria called on Monday for a massive rally in Damascus, Sabe`a Bahrat Sq (7 sees Sq).
The organizer stated that they have been officially authorized and they also have asked all civil and official establishments to support and join them at this “Rally; which they expected to gather more than 1 million Syrians at it” as they told the press.

Wednesday Rally activity would be also followed by signing a huge two flags, Russia & China, to show “Gratefulness for their stance and support for Syria.”
http://www.dp-news.com/en/detail.aspx?articleid=99491

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October 11th, 2011, 7:08 pm

 

685. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

YOU WILL NEVER, EVER, EVER,EVER, REMOVE ASSAD OUT OF SYRIA, I DARE YOUR SHARMOUT ALLAH. BY MY WILL, BY MY NAME, BY MY POWERS.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:09 pm

 

686. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

685 Thus Spoke Gargamel

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October 11th, 2011, 7:17 pm

 

687. Tara said:

Zoo

If you say so…Nevertheless, I like people who know how to feel….to cry for a loved one,  to feel pain, to recognize a true affection, to show anger, to forgive…and particularly in case of leaders, to differentiate pseudo-adoration out of coercion or out of lie from real one, to not giggle retard-ly amidst spilled blood…too much to ask?  

But why the double standards?  Diplomatic for Iran to issue sharp criticism to Erdogan in regard to Bashar and not diplomatic for him to ask a former colonizing power to face its past?

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October 11th, 2011, 7:19 pm

 

688. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

KEEP ON BARKING UNTILL THE DAY YOU DIE, ASSAD WILL RULE, BECAUSE “I” DO NOT LIKE YOUR KIND TO PUT FOOT IN SYRIA.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:19 pm

 

689. Dale Andersen said:

Memo To: SYRIAN NATIONALIST PARTY

RE: “…subhumans with intelligence less than a bug…”

Good one, Dude! You sound like Besho, your Daddy Long-Neck. Remember when he called the protestors germs? Are bugs better than germs?

You decide…

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October 11th, 2011, 7:22 pm

 

690. irritated said:

From death to life, from opponent to supporter in 5 days: The Magic wand of the Medias.

6 October 2011

• Sheikh Nawaf al-Bashir, the head of the large Baqara tribe in Syria’s eastern governate of Deir Ezzour and a PROMINENT OPPONENT of President Assad, has been KILLED after being TORTURED, Syria’s council of tribes has said, AL-ARABIYA reports.

11 October 2011

Sheikh Nawaf al-Basheer: I Refuse to Draw Strength from External Sides, Reform is Internal Issue
(Dp-news – Sana)

DAMASCUS- In an interview with the Syrian TV broadcasted Monday evening, Sheikh Nawaf al-Basheer of al-Bakara clan stressed that he refuses the issue of drawing strength from external sides because the reform in Syria is an internal issue.

Sheikh al-Basheer pointed out to the necessity of giving room for the reforms to be implemented.

He added that he supported the peaceful demonstrations calling for political and economic reforms until criminals showed up in the protests, warning the Syrians against the misleading and instigating channels which lost their creditability.

”I appeal to all Syrians and peaceful demonstrators who are keen on their Homeland and its unity not to listen to the satellites of sedition and to give chance for the political reforms under the leadership of President Bashar al-Assad,” said Sheikh al-Basheer, asserting that any political reform needs stability and security and not confusion.

”We stand against those killers and criminals, owners of foreign agendas, foreign schemes exploited and changed the demonstrations from peaceful ones to demonstrations of violence and killings,” added al-Basheer.

”Syria, the most ancient civilization of history, is proud of its leader” added Sheikh al-Basheer calling on the Syrians to stand united behind their President al-Assad as to confront and foil the foreign agendas and plots.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:25 pm

 

691. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

i and “I” @ 688
Captalizing the letter i loses its value when surrounded by equally capitalized letters. I think a small i is more suitable in that context, or perhps a sub-script i .

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October 11th, 2011, 7:28 pm

 

692. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

وائل الحافظ : الثورة السورية هي كميلاد المسيح وسوف تكون حدث تاريخي يتم الـتأريخ به

You are right, it is just like Jesus of Nazereth miracle birth, fiction and fraud. Born in Nazereth, but Archeological digs discovered the city was not there when he supposedly born. And that is teh Syrian Revolotion, made up of paid foreign mercenaries an da whole a lot of expandable ideots, 16000+ of them, non of them know a shit about tectonic weapon. In fact most never had an Ipod, owned a laptop, they just bowed down in Mosques 5 times and bended over for the sheikh and 10 times a day bowed down for the Mukhabrat and Allawite Lords, why, because they are Syrian Hamsters, 16,000,000 of them poluting that place and infecting it with rat germs.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:36 pm

 

693. SYRIAN HAMSTER said:

REALITY
I rest my case, leave him in La La land, the man believes he is talking to a real Hamster.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:40 pm

 

694. majedkhaldoun said:

Haytham
The meeting has to be secret,since they have to go back to Syria, they will be arrested if they meet publicly.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:45 pm

 

695. jna said:

Iran with real problems vrs. USA: How will US retaliate against Iran for alleged assassination plot? http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign-Policy/2011/1011/How-will-US-retaliate-against-Iran-for-alleged-assassination-plot

“Revelations Tuesday of an alleged Iranian-directed plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States on American soil will plunge already-confrontational US-Iran relations to new depths.”

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October 11th, 2011, 7:47 pm

 

696. zoo said:

Tara

Sorry, there are no comparison on the words used by Iran against Erdogan that were firm but diplomatic and polite and Erdogan who used very demeaning words toward Sarkozy, just read what he said, treating Sarkozy of ‘helpless’ and telling to ‘mind his own business’

I just observed that when Erdogan looses his temper, he can’t control what and how he says and does: not a quality for a diplomat.

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October 11th, 2011, 7:56 pm

 

697. zoo said:

Any doctors on SC? The Doctor’s Syndicate is open to expat Syrian doctors.

Syrian Cabinet approves Bill on Syndical Organization of Doctors

DAMASCUS- During its weekly session chaired by Prime Minister Dr. Adel Safar, the Cabinet on Tuesday approved a bill on the syndical organization of doctors which annuls Law No. 31 for 1980.

In a statement to journalists after the session, Health Minister Dr. Wael al-Halqi said the bill on the syndical organization of doctors includes new articles allowing army doctors to join the syndicate to make use of the benefits it provides, which will benefit more than 13,000 doctors.

He said that the bill allows physicians who had been working abroad for more than five years to rejoin the syndicate and maintain their membership and benefits, in addition to providing additional money to the syndicate and its retirement fund.

{…}
http://www.dp-news.com/en/detail.aspx?articleid=99503

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October 11th, 2011, 8:03 pm

 

698. uzair8 said:

A comment posted today on AJE Live syria blog comment section:

SFOs statement

The value of a shabbiha according to reliable security source

When the regime enters the villages and district that are loyal to it, it takes volunteers under the name of (shabbiha), forcing them to sign an agreement that includes humiliating clauses that show the reality of the value of those who fight and defend Bashar Assad, and here are the conditions:

1- Parents and family must never claim the price of blood
2- This shabbih is not considered marty because if so, his parents and family will be entitled to a pension and employ one of his relatives, adding some privileges to access education for his brother or his son or else..
3- His death is not made public
4- Not an official funeral held for him and then buried under the cover of night
5-His parents and his relatives will not claim his wages in case he dies.
6- His daily salary is 1500 syrian pounds and on friday 2000 syrian pounds
And he accepts these conditions under the name of humiliating: with our soul and blood for Bashar.

There was a demonstration for several days in the governorate of Tartus pro-regime demands the return of their sons who are fighting with the regime under the name of shabbiha, after they suffered heavy losses following the Syrian free army operation impact.

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October 11th, 2011, 8:14 pm

 

699. uzair8 said:

Another comment from the same blog:

This is what happened at Damascus University
SFOs
the resignation of Dr. Haidar Haidar happened yesterday
2011/10/10 at the Faculty of Natural Sciences the Department of Physics at the University of Damascus : a students’ eyewitness gave an account : doctor in mathematics khawla Haidar Haidar entered the first year students’ hall and wrote on the blackboard the following words: that the story of armed gangs in Syria is a false one and that it is thearmy and security men were killing the the demonstrators, she therefore announced her resignation from the University of Damascus in protest and wrote her name and signature. The hall was full of warm applause by thestudents during five minutes.And thus a person from among the students went and highlighted a security ticket to the Dr., and the sutdents tried protect her and smuggle her outside of the hall, and no one knows her fate And then a large numbers of security men were seen in the campus resort

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October 11th, 2011, 8:15 pm

 

700. Syrian Nationalist Party said:

Check this link and see why Syrians are refusing more hamsters to rule them: Those 20 patents for Syria about half of them are mine. So there are 11 more Syrians that don’t live in Hamsterstan:

http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/ac/ido/oeip/taf/cst_utl.htm

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October 11th, 2011, 8:16 pm

 

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