“The Real Opposition in Syria is Not the Syrian National Council or Free Syrian Army,” by Idaf

The Real Opposition in Syria is Not the Syrian National Council or Free Syrian Army
By Idaf (who recently left Syria and has been working with opposition activists)
12 February 2012 for Syria Comment

It’s a grave mistake to put all opposition in one group. Some are worse than the regime, some as bad, others are smart, savvy with a plan. Of course you only hear in the news (and sometimes though selective attention as Alex calls it) about those pushed by the different powers (Qatar, France, Saudi, etc.) like the Syrian National Council (SNC) and the Free Syrian Army (FSA), because they best fit the agenda of the sensationalist media. Everybody (including Ehsani in his previous article) willingly ignore the large activist networks on the ground and those independent and rational political opposition groups inside who are not proxies for other powers, who have a plan and working for a state after the regime is gone, not for revenge like the opposition you hear about in the media.

Simplifying things by using the “Regime vs. SNC/FSA” shallow lens only helps the regime. Media, policy makers and think tanks should be educated about the richness of the opposition and how they should focus more on the real opposition, not the one shoved by the Aljazeera down the throat of Syrians (SNC) or the FSA myth that perfectly fits the agenda of regime, the Islamists, and the media, all at the same time. As someone who is in touch with all key opposition groups and the activists on the ground, I can tell you that I’m fed up with the simplified, naive views and the manipulative perception management tactics that aim to draw unrealistic picture about the conflict by conveniently framing it simply as idiot proxies and armed elements (SNC/FSA) vs. the brutal mass-murderer autocratic regime (the regime). While both description of the two groups are accurate, but there is much more to the opposition than the SNC and FSA.

The amount of political opportunism, corruption, lack of vision and lack of independence in the SNC is staggering and identical to the Iraqi National Congress. The SNC is becoming less relevant by the day. The FSA is a myth, as there is no coordinated group of militants across the country, only hundreds of small militias that have nothing in common in terms of ideology, arms, political awareness or anything else for that matter. Pushing the “FSA” in the media is just a media phenomenon that fits some agendas and gives false hope to the people inside. It also fits nicely with the regime’s line.

The real opposition is maturing and growing in influence inside and on the ground away from the influence of Qatar, Turkey, Saudi, France or the US. It is a matter of time before the regime gives way. Soon the SNC will be simply remembered as something like one of the many Iraqi opportunistic opposition groups that mushroomed just before the war on Iraq. The FSA myth will be debunked but the militias will continue to exist. The regime maybe able to crush or maneuver its way for a while with a combination of “Souria Allah 7amiha” strikes of luck coupled with idiotic strategic mistakes from the SNC/FSA, but new more realistic, mature, civic and political powers are taking shape on the ground and will be emerging as powerful players soon. Even if the regime survives this round, there will be new rounds between an exhausted regime and new re-envigorated opposition groups. Forget the SNC and the FSA if you want to talk about the future. The simplistic media and analysts can continue to focus on them as they are sensational enough for media consumption for Syrians abroad, for Arabs and for westerners who are entertaining themselves with watching another Syrian TV series. This time it’s not باب الحارة [“The Door of the Neighborhood,” a famous TV series] featuring macho conflicts of good vs. bad on MBC, but باب الخرا [“The door of Shit,”] perception manipulations on Aljazeera and other media. The reality is happening on the ground inside (and online on closed social media networks) with brave and thoughtful groups of Syrians who are working on interim solutions for the conflict, for long term ones for a sustainable state and for justice rather than revenge.

Syrians who want a solution should focus on channeling their energy towards reducing the impact of the fall of the regime rather than supporting the SNC/FSA or supporting the regime out of fear of the “FSA”, the Islamists or the militants. Everyone should stop simply forcing the Syrians to chose between the Regime or SNC/FSA/Islamists. These are not the only options. Far from it.

They are multiple movements shaping and reshaping on weekly basis. Most activists are learning and maturing with time. They change their views and jump from one group to another according to events and developments. When one’s friend or family gets detained or killed they move from peaceful to supporting violence. When you argue with those supporting violence they change their mind, etc. The movements are in constant change but you can notice the fast organic maturity.

Why don’t you hear about them?

1- The international media is lazy and sloppy and has settled for simplifying things. They like a good vs. bad story and don’t want to lose their audience by explaining the complex reality.
2- The movements themselves are secretive in nature as the only survival tactic.
3- Most of these movements bring together people with different political and ideological points of view. They work on unified broad lines. As such they focus more on 3amal maydani [work on the ground] and not political action.
4- In most of these movements, politics is frowned upon and activism is glorified. Doing politics publicly (even as opposition to the regime) is still viewed as opportunism and “riding the revolution”. It’ a matter of time till some of these groups get enough legitimacy to lead politically. In other words, doing politics is still suicide within the revolution. Only those groups or individuals that have some sort of earlier political legitimacy can work publicly in politics (and very few have survived or remain in the country due to the brutality of the regime).

These are some of the reasons.

Comments (243)

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1. Ghufran said:

I do not doubt that the FSA is a symbolic political body with zero chance of defeating the regime’s army,I also realized that most Syrians do not identify with those political figures they see on TV. That is why I believe dialogue among Syrians under international monitoring and guarantees,of safety and record keeping,etc,is the least costly way to end this crisis. The SNC arrogance is simply unacceptable,I suspected that they will dissolve,and I still stand by my statement.
Here is Fareed Zakaria on Syria:

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February 12th, 2012, 7:03 pm


2. Friend in America said:

I am pleased you spoke out for the resistance groups who do not have a voice in the world media.

The”silent resistance” may succeed for a while by following the path you outlined, but there will be a time when they must face the need to push back militarilly the destructive military and police forces fo the central government, and to give all Syrians a message of hope for the future, something everyone understands. Couple that with an action plan for the citizens who are on the sidelines but wish for a change. A simple statement such as equal rights for everyone and equal opportunity for all is a good starting place.

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February 12th, 2012, 7:46 pm


3. Jad said:

What imaginable ‘Shadow’ opposition the article is talking about?
-Nobody heard of them or their work and activities
-Their plans are inclusive to the members, the Syrian public don’t even know anything about.
-Their effort are not effective on the ground, they Will appear magically and suddenly to save Syria AFTER the regime fall.
-Their strength is in their discrete.
-The media doesn’t know anyone of them or report about them anywhere but in this article.

I’m sorry but no politicians in the world history succeed without being with people and known to thew-hen they are as hidden and away from everybody, unless they are some Syrian myth.

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February 12th, 2012, 7:46 pm


4. Tara said:


“The amount of political opportunism, corruption, lack of vision and lack of independence in the SNC is staggering and identical to the Iraqi National Congress..The real opposition is maturing and growing in influence inside and on the ground away from the influence of Qatar, Turkey, Saudi, France or the US. It is a matter of time before the regime gives way..”

I am glad to hear that there are large activist networks on the ground that is maturing and have a vision, but don’t you think that it is time for us Syrians to stop vilifying the others and call them opportunistic and corrupt just because they are different.  Don’t understand me wrong, I have no emotional or physical ties to the SNC, but had it not been for the SNC’s and others hard work and dedication in rallying the world against the regime, Bashar and his thugs would have replayed Hama-I long time ago in every dissenting city and town and brutally silenced every and all opposing voices?

I personally would most definitely give my vote to a home grown leader whose vision is to preserve the rights of all Syrians, and at the same time the unity and the pride of Syria,  but I also like to give credit when credit is due.

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February 12th, 2012, 7:49 pm


5. Ghufran said:

Do you think the talks about a deposit of $ by China and Ruusia in the SCB are credible?
I agree with Jad that we need to see those independent opposition movements and hear their political platform. If Egypt is a model,those groups are simply ladders to be used by Islamists to capture power. Look at the new Egyptian PA,you will only see men with beards and one woman (appointed) and a miserable rep of Al-Aqbaat who are over 12 million strong. I can not buy fish in water,many will agree.

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February 12th, 2012, 7:51 pm


6. ann said:

3. Jad said:

What imaginable ‘Shadow’ opposition the article is talking about?

The mossad

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February 12th, 2012, 7:59 pm


7. William Scott Scherk said:

Thanks, Mawal95, for this:

I’d heard a leak or rumour that under the newly drafted Constitution a person wanting to compete as a candidate in the Presidential election must receive the endorsements of 20 percent of the members of parliament, and another leak that it was 5 percent. I’ve since read another source, Qadri Jamil, who’s a member of the drafting Committee, who’s saying the percentage is 35 percent.

The official Chinese state press agency did indeed quote Qadri Jamil (one of the lucky few who new ‘party’ has been licensed).

If Xinhua quoted him correctly, it seems obvious why some might think the new constitution must be kept under wraps, and not shown to the people. First it must go to the moribund Syrian Assembly**, where the proceedings will occur in closed committee.

Delay, obfuscation, lack of attention to the desires of anyone other than the ruling powers …

From today’s SANA article:

President al-Assad expressed appreciation of the Committee members’ efforts to carry out this national task, calling upon them to shoulder their responsibility as a Committee charged with preparing the draft constitution to explain its articles to the citizens with all possible means so that the citizen is the one to have the final decision to approve the constitution.

“When the new constitution is approved, Syria will have passed the most important stage of laying down the constitutional and legal structure through the reforms and laws that have already been issued to take the country to a new era in cooperation with all spectrums of the Syrian people to achieve what we all aspire for in terms of developing our country to draw a brilliant future for next generations,” said President al-Assad.

From the Xinhua article:

Amending the constitution has been one of the main demands by Syrian protesters. In particular, they want the cancellation of Section Eight, which states that the Baath party is the leader of the nation and the society.

The amendment of Section Eight would open the way for the formation of parties besides the Baath and 11 other closely associated parties. The committee tasked with drafting the new constitution has decided to limit presidential terms to a maximum of two seven-year mandates.

Committee Member Qadri Jamil said President Assad will end this term in 2014 and can be elected to another 7-year term.

Qadri Jamil said, “According to the new draft constitution, future presidents will not be nominated by the Ba’ath Party. Every candidate must get 35 percent of the votes in Parliament. And there are also demands of age, degree and other qualifications for candidates.”

This is even worse than I thought. If there are age and (post-secondary) degrees necessary to get elected, what would be the “Other Qualifications”? Maybe we can get a Syria Comment insider scoop, and Jamil could give more of a sneek peek …

In Canada, age and degree restrictions would likely have kept a great crop of new MPs out of our Parliament. We would have missed out on the marvelous Laurin Liu (though perhaps not Djaouida Sellah). I just do not understand why the process and details are so hushed and secretive.

** there is a blank for the offical page for the Syrian Assembly. Who the particular members of that body may be, the system is not telling us. Whatever it does but serve as a hanger for a SANA story, this too is unknown. How Qadri Jamil got to be part of and spokesman for the committee, also obscure.

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February 12th, 2012, 8:06 pm


8. mjabali said:

Today there was few interesting comments in an article in al-Arabiyah. The article is entitled: “The Challenge of the Rebels reaches the heart of the Syrian Capital Damascus”


The article is really average, but the comments are interesting.

The ones overseeing the comment section blocked many comments, including mine of course, that did not fit the Saudi/Qatari agenda. While at the same time letting many take a free ride. They published 25 comments out of 163 for the one person threatening violence against the Alawis of course and invoking the decree of Ibn Taymiyah as usual.

Still here are the few interesting comments:

The first is by a Moroccan man who said that the army is a huge factor in overturning regimes. He said: ”

– انتم تدرون في حلقة مفرغةمغربي (زائر)
12/02/2012 م، 05:44 مساءً (السعودية) 02:44 مساءً (جرينتش)
كيف سيسقط النظام والجيش والمخابرات و الامن معه رئيس تونس ومصر واليمن وليبيا سقطو لانهم لم يتحكمو في الجيش بينما بشار الجيش معه الشعارات والفاخر بالصمود وقوة الشعب لاتجدي امام قوة جيش موالي للنظام واخواننا السوريين لم يفعلو كما طلب ثوار مصر و تونس واليمن باسقاط الرئيس وبقاء الجيش والنظام بل طالبو ايضا باسقاط الجيش و القصاص من قادته وعندما تكون المواجهة هي ضد الجيش فستكون النتيجة هيا مثل الجزائر تماما سحق الثورة وبقاء النظام

Another interesting comment is by a woman from Damascus cursing the Alawis and calling them names while asking them to keep their dirt out of snow-white Damascus, the Damascus of Nizar Qabbani.

103 – الشام لأهل دمشق الاصليين و يجب المحافظة عليها

دمشقية (زائر)

12/02/2012 م، 08:57 مساءً (السعودية) 05:57 مساءً (جرينتش)
يجب أستعادة دمشق الشريفة من ايدي المحتلين الأوباش النصيريين و عدم السماح لهم بتنجيسها مرة اخرى ..و بعد سقوطهم يجب ان نضع قانونا يحرم هجرة الريف الى المدينة لتزدهر الزراعة من جديد و يزدهر البلد مع المساعدة الكبيرة للفلاحين ،لان أراضيهم و قراهم جنة للناظرين. هي اولى بهم ولا ادري لماذا يهجرونها و يأتون إلينا… فالشام اختنقت و تلوث جوها و بليت بالأمراض بسبب هذا.. اتركوا الشام بحالها حتى يستطيع اهلها و مغتربيها الكثر( بسبب النظام ) إعمارها من جديد فنحن احن الناس على الشام ونفديها بروحنا و ليزهر الياسمين و يتنفس الصعداء كوصية شاعرنا الكبير نزار قباني

She comes back again with this gem

134 – الشام لأهل دمشق الاصليين و يجب المحافظة عليهادمشقية (زائر)

13/02/2012 م، 12:30 صباحاً (السعودية) 09:30 مساءً (جرينتش)
هيا يا ابطال دمشق الحضارة هبوا لنجدتها ونجدة إخوانكم في حمص ..الشهامة و العزة عنوانكم هبوا وعين الله تحرسكم ، طهروها من الدنس أعيدوا لنا بياض الياسمين بعد ان اسود من قذاراتهم . اهل دمشق الشرفاء الأتقياء اهل العز أعيدوا لنا مجدنا و كرامتنا …

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February 12th, 2012, 8:09 pm


9. Norman said:


What you said makes more and more important that Syria produce a system that will let the Syrian people chose without taking sides before the election, the fair system is what Syria needs, no who is better.let the people decide that.

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February 12th, 2012, 8:23 pm


10. ann said:

Syria ‘categorically’ rejects Arab League decisions

12 February 2012
CAIRO – Syria on Sunday “categorically” rejected the decision by Arab foreign ministers to back the Syrian opposition and call for a joint UN-Arab peacekeeping mission, the Syrian ambassador to Cairo said.

“The Syrian Arab Republic categorically rejects the decisions of the Arab League” which he said “reflects the hysteria of these governments” after failing to get foreign intervention at the UN Security Council, Yusef Ahmed said in a statement.


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February 12th, 2012, 8:29 pm


11. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

The content of this article is purely vicious. The SNC corrupt? How on earth can a body with no power, be corrupt? Because it receives funds from KSA and among it’s members are Muslim brothers?

The SNC is not a political party, but an umbrella of different movements with a spectrum of views. Why do you attack them in such a rude and mean tone?

Instead of uniting and joining hands, this article calls for more divisiveness and fragmentation of the Syrian people and opposition.

Shame on you Idaf.

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February 12th, 2012, 8:35 pm


12. Norman said:

When will Iraq be the AL president.?

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February 12th, 2012, 8:36 pm


13. William Scott Scherk said:

Thanks, Ehsani, for introducing a new voice in reports for Syria Comment. As someone now (relatively) safe outside Syria, Idaf will I hope answer some further questions raised by his article.

He claims that he is in touch with all the key opposition groups. I wonder if he can name them, without “outing” anyone. If he has worked with Local Coordination committees, medical relief, communications, material support. It is hard to know how well-placed he is to make such summary judgements.

As someone who is in touch with all key opposition groups, I wish Idaf would at least give an anonymous narrative of some of these wonderful leaders-in-waiting he has discovered in the large activist networks.

If “Media, policy makers and think tanks should be educated about the richness of the opposition,” then here is his opportunity. This is a widely-read blog. He should take the opportunity to expand, in my opinion. Slogans are not enough. Denunciations are not enough.

Yes, we all might agree with the generalization that “international media is lazy and sloppy,” but if “the movements themselves are secretive in nature,” the key to educating the media is information.

If the movements and individuals work along “unifed broad lines,” what are they?

Ehsani, please encourage Idaf to discuss and answer questions if he is able to. Otherwise this is just another cry of rage and frustration, a re-demonizing of the SNC by someone who gives no specifics to his charges.

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February 12th, 2012, 8:47 pm


14. Hans said:

here what i think is going on this weekend!

It is clear there is something being cooked in the back doors of everyone house!!!
1- Turkey has shut up and its PM is not heard anymore, who knows maybe his Anastomoses has been leaking Syrian blood and his shit on his hands.
2- The Americans have soften their voice and not much being said but media rhetoric, and Hillary is talking to Turkish tomorrow that the opposition they have created both together have failed miserable and even many admits they are worse than the regime itself.
3- the Syrian regime took the battle to the end ( as he should) against all the killers of the Syrians ( people are happy that the Army is bounding the area where the mercenaries and terrorists are present). people asked for the Syrian army to protect them and it is over due that Assad had the gut to bombard this terrorists.
4- It is clear that the Americans know that Alqaida in Syria is not the answer to Iran in Syria both are bad news for the Americans. Fareed Zakaria and many others understand that very well, except the Americans who either naive or want to be naive, it is clear that the Americans cooked their meal but don’t want to eat it.
strange, better through the meal out before it rotten more out.
I think this is the case of the outside opposition state at the current time.
5- GCC is going to be the biggest losers in this equation in spite of their money and filthy rich life style, when their population rise to the moment there is not going to be anyone to defend this pig rich goat beards trashy princes/kings/retards.
6- Assad better learn if he passes this one, he better have a free and square election under the watch of international monitors, if he wins then he is sit for life as a king and if loses he better leave somewhere else on earth.
7- Russia and china proved to the world that fair is fair and no free pass for the Americans and the slippery slope the American tried in Libya will never pass this time.
8- finally Ghaddafi is dead now but one of his famous words to the AL is that everyone turn is coming and that proved beyond doubt to be true.
hola Saddam, Ghaddaffi, Albashir,bin zein. next is Abdullah x 2, Althani, etc….

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February 12th, 2012, 8:57 pm



Bravo Idaf!

Finally somebody said it. This is exactly what is going on in Damascus. These groups are not only the primary opposition, but they should be. Leaders without significant ties to what is going on on the ground will be hard to coalesce around. The future political leadership, when it does arise, must arise from within these groups.

It should be noted that while these groups bring people together with different ideologies, from what I’ve seen, they’re very decentralized and based around close groups of friends.

For those of you criticizing their method, you have to realize that they’re simply responding to the situation they’re faced with, Hafez and Abu Hafez left a legacy that makes it hard to find experience in organizing politically, and this is a first step for these groups.

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February 12th, 2012, 9:07 pm


16. Hans said:

@ 11
it is clear anytime the truth is told that the Mossad is angry, i guess, he is saying that the outside opposition are corrupt and could be worse then the regime itself! millions of dollars already disappeared in the hands of the opposition! Bush has funded this MB opposition with at least 50millions in the past and Obama continues to fund them.
that’s true and many has been saying that and even many believes that the Americans cooked a meal they don’t want to eat therefore they are looking for a way to throw it out before it stinks.

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February 12th, 2012, 9:11 pm


17. J MUMU said:

Listen, the SNC has made too many mistakes for these inside opposition to join with them. firstly, the SNC should not have gone out to say that they would sever the relationship with Iran and Hezballah. This comment reeks of opportunism because they know who they were trying to suck up too (Western and GCC states). If the SNC want to act like a true umbrella group then it would not have said such divisive things. There focus should have been into turning syria into a democracy and a civil/ secular state, the way it should have been after we defeated the Turks and betrayed by the west. this is whats important, and because they made such comments they hurt their credibility. This revolution is about the Syria people and our fight for self determination. the West, GCC, Turks are untrustworthy and i don’t think we as syrians need to be told how to deal with a dictator from other dictators.

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February 12th, 2012, 9:13 pm


18. Revlon said:

Dear Idaf,
((Media, policy makers and think tanks should be educated about the richness of the opposition and how they should focus more on the real opposition, not the one shoved by the Aljazeera down the throat of Syrians (SNC) or the FSA myth that perfectly fits the agenda of regime, the Islamists, and the media, all at the same time.

As someone who is in touch with all key opposition groups and the activists on the ground,))

Could you name them please!

((The FSA is a myth, as there is no coordinated group of militants across the country, only hundreds of small militias that have nothing in common in terms of ideology, arms, political awareness))
– Hundreds!! What is your “ground group” scource?
– A national army, unlike Assad thugs, need not have one ideology or political inclinations.

((FSA have nothing in common for that matter?!!))
How about protecting people!
How about saving lives?
How about freedom from tyranny?
How about freedom from Alawis despotism?
What does matter to you?
We are living a crisis.
The priority is to saving lives and putting an end to the murderous regime!
Other matters, including the shape of future Syria and its constitution have been amply addressed; Any real practical applications will have to wait until the transitional period ensues.
Until then, your groups efforts at networking and practicing responsible activism are to be commended, without belittling the sacrifices of their brethren who chose to share a different responsibility.

((But new more realistic, mature, civic and political powers are taking shape on the ground and will be emerging as powerful players soon))

The “realistic and mature” would have had neither the time nor the space to even write an anonymous piece like yours on this blog, had it not for the sacrifices of the brave demonstrators and FSA fighters, buddy!
Their presence and activism owe their existence to the political and ground support of SNC and FSA.
Efforts of all activists, whether visible or unseen are complementary!

((The reality is happening on the ground inside (and online on closed social media networks) with brave and thoughtful groups of Syrians who are working on interim solutions for the conflict, for long term ones for a sustainable state and for justice rather than revenge))

So you undervalue the representativeness of the hundreds of revolution websites that support SNC and websites, and the demonstrators’ support of the FSA!

Would you kindly name a website of your favorites of these networks, that share your valuation of FSA?

((Syrians who want a solution should focus on channeling their energy towards reducing the impact of the fall of the regime rather than supporting the SNC/FSA or supporting the regime out of fear of the “FSA”, the Islamists or the militants))

May I ask how do you envision the regime is going to fall if the demonstrators who trust and embrace the FSA go home?
Could you please name your “realistic and Mature” groups that will take charge of effecting the change; how? and when?

((The movements themselves are secretive in nature as the only survival tactic))
Goodness me!

So you accuse media of being lazy and seeking sensationalism for not focusing on your “secretive, mature and realistic groups”
Could you please tell us how they are supposed to find out about these groups if they are so secretive and you are anonymous, yourself.

Change requires courage and transparency.
You and your groups seem to have neither!
FSA and SNC pledged their efforts and are paying their lives to advance the cause of freedom of all Syrians, irrespective of ideology or ethnicity.

Your piece about the secretive yet trustworthy, mature yet flippant, savvy yet claim no ownership of a website have given no tangible indication of their existence outside the scribbles of your passionate opinion piece.

Realising how difficult and risky it is to come out and speak up against the regime, I would like to take this opportunity to commend your courage in breaking the silence.

It is your responsibility not the media to make your voice heard.
Your contributions to the future of Syria are as needed and desirable as, and need not be exclusive of others.


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February 12th, 2012, 9:46 pm


19. mjabali said:


As long as there is no known parties with agendas for the opposition they will remain invisible.

I asked on constant basis many people inside Syria from different positions about why they do not organize politically? They all (anti assad and pro assad) showed inability to organize.

The article may be right about the fast maturation of Syrians politically, but, again, I really doubt that things are at an advanced stage especially with the constant crackdown by al-Assad, who would not show that much patience for unwanted political dissent that does irk him and the absence of the known agenda and leaders.

Take Facebook activism for example: I am for one is lost with the huge number of pages, where many are chaotic run by rambling idiots. The years of the one party rule had produced political midgets out of the Syrian people.

Political parties with known agendas and leaders is the only way.

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February 12th, 2012, 9:55 pm


20. Ghufran said:

Qatar failed to convince the AL body to recognize the SNC as the legitimate rep of Syrian opposition,it also failed in passing a resolution asking for the SNC to be the sole rep of the opposition in Tunisia. Of interest is the reservation of Saudi Arabia,despite the hot air by Saud Alfaisal,and the opposition of Algeria,Lebanon,as expected,refused to play the Qatari game.
خرجت قطر من المولد بدون حمص اليوم و لكن لن تتوقف المحاولات القطريه لان الموضوع السوري صار قضية كرامه لأمراء الماعز
The short term survival of the regime seems like a done deal,but nothing beyond that is guaranteed,the old days when almukhabarat treated Syrian citizens like old furniture are gone for good.

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February 12th, 2012, 9:59 pm


21. ann said:

18. Ghufran said:

Qatar failed to convince the AL body to recognize the SNC

Why don’t they recognize the SNC and set the example for the rest of the world

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February 12th, 2012, 10:13 pm


22. Norman said:

look who is advising whom, That is fun, he is protecting the women,


ملك البحرين يهيب على الأسد الإصغاء لشعبه حقنًا للدماء

وكالات GMT 23:16:00 2012 الأحد 12 فبراير

اعتبر ملك البحرين حمد بن عيسى آل خليفة أن الشعب السوري هو وحده الذى يقرر ما إذا كان يتعين على الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد التنحي، لافتًا إلى أنّ التهديد الايراني اضطره إلى استدعاء قوات “درع الجزيرة” الخليجية لاعادة الاستقرار إلى البلاد.


ملك البحرين حمد بن عيسى آل خليفة
المنامة: أكد ملك البحرين حمد بن عيسى آل خليفة أن التهديد الايراني اضطره إلى استدعاء قوات “درع الجزيرة” الخليجية لاعادة الاستقرار الى البلاد، موضحاً ان المعارضة في بلاده بأنها ليست كتلة واحدة. وفى سياق آخر أهاب عاهل البحرين بالرئيس السورى بشار الأسد أن يصغي لشعبه حقنا للدماء، معتبرا أن الشعب السوري هو وحده الذى يقرر ما إذا يتعين على الرئيس الأسد التنحي.

وقال الملك لـ “دير شبيغل” الالمانية إنه يأسف للأحداث التي العام الماضي لافتًا إلى أنّ بلاده ليس بها معارضة من كتلة واحدة لها نفس الرؤى “فمثل هذا الشئ ليس موجودا في دستورنا لكن هناك أناسا لهم وجهات نظر مختلفة وهذا أمر لا بأس به”. أضاف الملك حمد ان هتافات المحتجين بسقوطه لا تعد سبباً يدعو لسجنهم، وقال: “هي فقط قضية تصرفات. ولكن عندما يصيحون «يسقط الملك ويعيش خامنئي» فهذا يعد مشكلة بالنسبة للوحدة الوطنية”.

وقال الملك إنه طلب المساعدة العسكرية من مجلس التعاون الخليجي لحماية “المنشآت الاستراتيجية في حالة أصبحت إيران أكثر عدائية”.

ويعتبر بعض الشيعة في البحرين خامنئي مرشدا روحيا لهم. ودائما ما يتهم انصار الحكومة جمعية الوفاق الوطني الاسلامية كبرى جماعات المعارضة في البحرين بوجود صلات تربطها بخامنئي وهو ما تنفيه الجمعية بشدة.

وفى معرض حديثه عن إعلان حالة السلامة الوطنية قال ملك البحرين إن القرار لم يتخذ فى هذا الشأن إلا بعد مضي أربعة أسابيع على بدء تلك الأحداث الموسفة، مشددا على أن أعمال العنف ذات الخلفية العنصرية، والتى أدت إلى سقوط قتلى وجرحى هى التى حتمت اللجوء إلى ذلك الإجراء.

وذكر الملك انه اعلن حالة الطوارئ لحماية النساء والاجانب الذين تعرض بعضهم لهجمات. وقال ان النساء في البحرين شعرن بالذعر “ومن الواجب على أي رجل محترم أن يحمي النساء، ولهذا كان لا بد علي أن أحميهن”.

واجرت الحكومة بعد الاضطرابات بعض الاصلاحات ومنحت البرلمان المنتخب المزيد من السلطات للرقابة على الوزراء وعلى الميزانية.

من جهة ثانية، افاد شهود عيان ان قوات الأمن البحرينية فرقت بعد ظهر امس تظاهرات شارك فيها مئات الاشخاص انطلقت من عدة مناطق وقرى شيعية باتجاه دوار اللؤلؤة الذي فرضت وزارة الداخلية والحرس الوطني طوقا أمنيا مشددا حوله.


إغلاق النافذة

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February 12th, 2012, 10:22 pm


23. jad said:

Regarding the new constitution:

دلة يتوقع الاستفتاء عليه أوائل الشهر المقبل…الرئيس الأسد يتسلم نسخة من مشروع الدستور الجديد ويؤكد أن المواطن «صاحب القرار النهائي بإقراره»

أجرى الرئيس بشار الأسد أمس «نقاشاً معمقاً حول بعض مواد» مشروع الدستور الجديد وذلك خلال استقباله اللجنة المكلفة إعداد المشروع.

وأوضح بيان رئاسي أن الرئيس الأسد تسلم من رئيس اللجنة المحامي مظهر العنبري نسخة من مشروع الدستور الجديد «للاطلاع عليه وطرحه للاستفتاء العام».
وقال الرئيس الأسد: إنه حالما يتم إقرار الدستور تكون سورية قد قطعت الشوط الأهم ألا وهو وضع البنية القانونية والدستورية عبر ما تم إقراره من إصلاحات وقوانين إضافة إلى الدستور الجديد للانتقال بالبلاد إلى حقبة جديدة بالتعاون بين جميع مكونات الشعب تحقق ما نطمح إليه جميعاً من تطوير لبلدنا يرسم مستقبلاً مشرقاً للأجيال القادمة. وفي تصريحات لـ«الوطن» أشار المتحدث الرسمي باسم اللجنة سام دلة إلى أن «نقاشاً معمقاً» جرى خلال الاجتماع الذي استمر «نحو ثلاث ساعات» وتناول «المادة الثالثة من مشروع الدستور والتعددية السياسية التي أقرها ومدة ولاية رئيس الجمهورية وعدد مرات تجديدها، وغيرها من المواد».
وتنص المادة الثالثة على أن «دين رئيس الجمهورية الإسلام» كما هو الحال في الدستور الحالي، كما نص مشروع الدستور في إحدى مواده على أنه: «يقوم النظام السياسي للدولة على مبدأ التعددية السياسية، وتتم ممارسة السلطة ديمقراطياً عبر الاقتراع، وتسهم الأحزاب السياسية المرخصة والتجمعات السياسية الانتخابية في الحياة السياسية الوطنية».
وحلت هذه المادة محل المادة الثامنة من الدستور الحالي التي تقول: إن «حزب البعث العربي الاشتراكي هو الحزب القائد في المجتمع والدولة ويقود جبهة وطنية تقدمية تعمل على توحيد طاقات جماهير الشعب ووضعها في خدمة أهداف الأمة العربية».
كما حدد مشروع الدستور مدة الولاية الرئاسية بـ«سبع سنوات ولولايتين» ما يعني أن تجديد الولاية سيكون لمرة واحدة فقط، في حين حدد الدستور الحالي مدة الولاية بسبع سنوات تاركاً عدد مرات تجديدها مفتوحاً.
ولفت دلة إلى أن أجواء الاجتماع كانت «إيجابية جداً وكان الرئيس الأسد منفتحاً واستمع لنقاشاتنا وآرائنا وطروحاتنا، وأكد أعضاء اللجنة أنه كان هناك عدد كبير من الآراء حيال مختلف مواد مشروع الدستور (157 مادة) لكنهم شددوا على أن هذا المشروع في النهاية هو نتاج عمل توافقي وجماعي لأعضاء اللجنة».
ووفق البيان الرئاسي، فإن الرئيس الأسد «أعرب عن تقديره للجهود التي بذلها أعضاء اللجنة لتحقيق هذه المهمة الوطنية ودعاهم إلى تحمل مسؤولياتهم كلجنة معدة لمشروع الدستور في شرح مواده للمواطنين بكل الوسائل المتاحة ليكون المواطن صاحب القرار النهائي بإقراره».
وعما إذا كان الرئيس الأسد طلب من اللجنة إعادة النظر في أي من مواد مشروع الدستور قال دلة: «أعتقد أن المشروع سيطرح على الرأي العام للاستفتاء عليه كما سلمناه للسيد الرئيس» موضحاً في الوقت نفسه أن أي تعديل على مواده «عائد للرئيس الأسد».
ورداً على سؤال توقع دلة أن يكون موعد الاستفتاء على مشروع الدستور «أوائل شهر آذار القادم» وقال: إنه سيتم «خلال اليومين القادمين الترويج له وإطلاع الشعب عليه عبر وسائل الإعلام ونشره في عدد من الصحف وفي موقع التشاركية الإلكتروني العائد لرئاسة مجلس الوزراء ليكون الناس على بيّنة من مشروع الدستور قبل الاستفتاء عليه».
ولن يكون هناك أي إشراف قضائي على عمليه الاستفتاء وأوضح دلة أن «قانون الاستفتاء الصادر عام 1973 ينظم العملية ولا يتضمن أي إشراف قضائي عليها كما هو الحال في جميع بلدان العالم» مشيراً إلى أن وزارة الداخلية «ستقوم بإنجاز الخطوات الخاصة بعملية الاستفتاء».
وعما إذا كان الاجتماع تناول الأوضاع الراهنة التي تمر بها سورية قال دلة: إن 90 بالمئة من مدة اجتماعنا تناولت مشروع الدستور والمدة المتبقية تطرقت إلى الوضع الراهن حيث استعرض الرئيس الأسد الأزمة التي تواجهها سورية بشكل كامل وأبدى تفاؤله الكبير بالخروج من الأزمة بفضل التماسك والوعي الكبيرين اللذين يتميز بهما أبناء الشعب السوري».
راضي محسن


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February 12th, 2012, 10:22 pm


24. Ehsani said:


It is of course possible that some Foreign countries help the Syrian Central Bank with hard currency deposits. No one can or will verify any information of this sort of course.

William Scott Scherk,

It was actually Dr. Landis who asked IDAF if he could publish his comment which started as an email discussion at first. IDAF is a fine young mind. In my opinion, he has his finger on the pulse of what many call the “other” opposition in Syria. Even those that disagree with him ought to ponder and think about what he has to say.

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February 12th, 2012, 10:24 pm


25. jad said:

Adonis again 🙂

أدونيس يهاجم الدعوات للاستقواء بالغرب

وجه الشاعر السوري المقيم في الخارج أدونيس انتقادات لاذعة إلى المعارضة السورية والربيع العربي، منددا بالدعوات التي توجهها هذه المعارضة إلى الغرب لدعمها، كما انتقد وصول الإسلاميين إلى السلطة في عدد من البلدان العربية.
وقال علي أحمد سعيد إسبر المعروف باسم أدونيس في مقابلة مع مجلة بروفايل النمساوية تنشر الاثنين “كيف يمكن بناء أسس دولة بمساعدة نفس الأشخاص الذين استعمروا هذا البلد؟” في إشارة إلى الانتداب الفرنسي على سوريا من عام 1920 إلى عام 1946.
وأضاف أدونيس “أنا لا أدعم المعارضة السورية ضد الرئيس بشار الأسد، وأي تدخل عسكري غربي في سوريا ستكون له نفس عواقب غزو العراق عام 2003، وسيدمر البلد”.
كما أعطى أدونيس صورة قاتمة للربيع العربي. وقال إنه أعجب ببداية الثورات في العالم العربي، لكنه تحول إلى انتقادها مع وصول الإسلاميين إلى الحكم في تونس ومصر إثر الانتخابات الأخيرة التي جرت في هذين البلدين.
وقال “لا توجد إسلاموية معتدلة” مشبها الإخوان المسلمين الفائزين بالانتخابات المصرية بـ”الفاشيين”. واعتبر أن الثورات في العالم العربي لا يمكن أن تنجح إلا إذا قامت على “أسس علمانية”.
وكان صاحب “الثابت والمتحول” قد أثار ضجة برفضه الثورة انطلاقا من المساجد، لكنه دعا في يونيو/حزيران الماضي الرئيس السوري إلى أن “يفتدي” أخطاء تجربة حزب البعث الحاكم و”يعيد الكلمة والقرار إلى الشعب السوري”.
وقال في “رسالة مفتوحة” نشرها في صحيفة السفير اللبنانية إن “حزب البعث العربي الاشتراكي لم ينجح في البقاء مهيمنا على سوريا بقوة الأيدولوجية، وإنما بقوة قبضة حديدية أمنية”.
ويبلغ أدونيس الثانية والثمانين من العمر، من منطقة اللاذقية، انتقل للعيش في لبنان عام 1956، قبل أن يقرر الإقامة في فرنسا عام 1985 حيث عمل أستاذا في جامعة السوربون.


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February 12th, 2012, 10:30 pm


26. jad said:

لبنان والجزائر يتحفظان … دمشق ترفض القرارات «الهستيرية» … والأسد يتسلّم مسودة الدستور
الوزراء العرب يطلبون التدخل العسكري الأجنبي في سوريا

دفع مجلس وزراء الخارجية العرب الأزمة السورية امس نحو المسار الأشد خطورة، الذي يعيد الى الأذهان السيناريو الليبي بحذافيره، عندما استدعى التدخل الدولي بشكله العسكري الذي يعني المزيد من الخراب والدمار والدم في سوريا، من خلال مطالبة مجلس الامن الدولي بإصدار قرار بتشكيل «قوات حفظ سلام عربية ـ اممية مشتركة للإشراف على تنفيذ وقف إطلاق النار»، في خطوة مفاجئة تقفز فوق الفيتو الروسي الصيني المؤكد على مثل هذا القرار، وتمهد لتشكيل مثل هذه القوات من دون غطاء الامم المتحدة ومن خارج مؤسساتها.
وطلب المجلس الوزاري العربي في قراره، الذي تحفظ عليه لبنان وحصرت الجزائر تحفظها باثنين من بنوده، وقف جميع أشكال التعاون الدبلوماسي مع النظام السوري، وقرر تقديم الدعم «السياسي والمادي» للمعارضة السورية. وسارعت دمشق الى إعلان رفضها لهذه القرارات «جملة وتفصيلا»، معتبرة ان القرار العربي «أظهر حالة الهستيريا والتخبط التي تعيشها حكومات عربية بعد فشلها الأخير في مجلس الأمن الدولي لاستدعاء التدخل الخارجي في الشأن السوري واستجداء فرض العقوبات على الشعب السوري».

واتهمت قطر والسعودية بالتأثير على قرارات الجامعة العربية.
وعلمت «السفير» أن رئيس الحكومة وزير الخارجية القطري الشيخ حمد بن جاسم آل ثاني طرح نصاً حول سوريا، خلال الاجتماع الوزاري العربي حول فلسطين، يتضمن فقرة فيها «يقرر المجلس الوزاري العربي الاعتراف بالمجلس الوطني السوري على أنه ممثل للشعب السوري، على أن يعلن الاعتراف رسمياً في مؤتمر أصدقاء سوريا في تونس».
واستفسر عدد من الحاضرين منه إذا كان قراراً أم مشروع قرار، فرد حمد بأنه قرار، لكن وزير خارجية لبنان عدنان منصور قال إن هذا القرار خطير جداً، فرد حمد «يمكنك التحفظ». وقال منصور «أنا أرفضه ولا أتحفظ عليه». وقال وزير خارجية العراق هوشيار زيباري «موضوع الاعتراف بالمجلس الوطني السوري أمر سابق لأوانه، ولم نتفق عليه. نحن اتفقنا في الاجتماع السابق (حول سوريا) على بحث الموضوع في تونس».
واستغرب وزير خارجية تونس رفيق عبد السلام حصر الموضوع بالمجلس الوطني، موضحاً أن هناك أطيافاً كثيرة في المعارضة السورية، ولا يمكننا تجاهلها، طالباً ترك الأمر إلى اجتماع تونس. ورد حمد «70 إلى 80 في المئة (من المعارضة) يمثلها المجلس الوطني».
وطالب وزير خارجية مصر باعتماد القرار الأول والاعتراف أن يكون في تونس، وأن نكتفي في الفقرة بالدعم المالي والسياسي تمهيداً للاعتراف بها في تونس. ورفض حمد الفكرة نهائياً.
وكانت هناك مداخلات لعدد من وزراء الخارجية أبرزهم اللبناني والجزائري والعراقي الذين اعترضوا على الفقرة، فيما تمسك المصري بموقفه الاعتراف لاحقاً وأيده التونسي في ذلك. وقال الجزائري إننا مع المعارضة لكننا نريد منها أن تتحد قبل الاعتراف بها وإذا لم يتحدوا لا يمكننا معرفة كيف نخاطبهم.
اعترض حمد بشدة على الموقف الجزائري، وهنا قال وزير خارجية الجزائر لحمد «إذا كنتم تريدون تكسير الجامعة العربية فالجزائر لن تشارك في هذا التكسير. نحن متفقون على أن يكون هناك إجماع على هذا الأمر».
وسأل حمد من سيشارك في مؤتمر تونس فرد عليه عدد من الوزراء بتحديد الموضوع لاحقاً. وقدمت الجزائر اقتراحاً بأن كل دولة تأخذ على عاتقها الاعتراف بالمعارضة، لكن حمد أصر على الفقرة التي تقول بالاعتراف بالمجلس الوطني السوري، فيما تمسك لبنان والجزائر ومصر والعراق بموقفهم. وأدرك حمد عند هذه اللحظة أن الجو غير مؤات لطرح هذه الفقرة، قبل أن يتم التوصل إلى اتفاق تدعو فيه تونس المجلس الوطني السوري إلى حضور المؤتمر، وعلى هذا الأساس تم رفع الجلسة.
في هذا الوقت، تسلم الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد من أعضاء اللجنة الوطنية المكلفة إعداد مشروع دستور نسخة من مشروع الدستور للاطلاع عليه وتحويله إلى مجلس الشعب قبل طرحه للاستفتاء العام. وأعرب الأسد عن «تقديره للجهود التي بذلها أعضاء اللجنة لتحقيق هذه المهمة الوطنية، ودعاهم إلى تحمل مسؤولياتهم كلجنة معدة لمشروع الدستور في شرح مواده للمواطنين بكل الوسائل المتاحة ليكون المواطن صاحب القرار النهائي بإقراره». وكان الأسد اعلن في كانون الثاني الماضي ان الاستفتاء سيتم في الاسبوع الاول من آذار المقبل.
وقال الأسد «حالما يتم إقرار الدستور تكون سوريا قد قطعت الشوط الأهم، ألا وهو وضع البنية القانونية والدستورية عبر ما تم إقراره من إصلاحات وقوانين، إضافة إلى الدستور الجديد، للانتقال بالبلاد الى حقبة جديدة، بالتعاون بين جميع مكونات الشعب لتحقق ما نطمح اليه جميعا من تطوير لبلدنا يرسم مستقبلاً مشرقاً للأجيال المقبلة».
وفي القاهرة، قرر وزراء الخارجية العرب، في بيان بعد اجتماعهم برئاسة رئيس الحكومة وزير الخارجية القطري الشيخ حمد بن جاسم آل ثاني، إنهاء عمل بعثة المراقبين العرب الحالية في سوريا، وقبول استقالة رئيسها محمد الدابي من منصبه، وتعيين مبعوث عربي خاص الى سوريا، ذكر مسؤول في الجامعة العربية ان الأمين العام نبيل العربي اقترح ان يكون وزير خارجية الأردن الأسبق عبد الإله الخطيب، الذي كان مبعوثاً من الامم المتحدة الى ليبيا، قبل الحرب الأطلسية عليها.
ودعا الوزراء «مجلس الأمن إلى إصدار قرار بتشكيل قوات حفظ سلام عربية أممية مشتركة للإشراف على تنفيذ وقف إطلاق النار». وأعلنوا انهم سيطلبون «من المجموعة العربية في الأمم المتحدة تقديم مشروع قرار للجمعية العامة في أقرب الآجال يتضمن المبادرة العربية وباقي القرارات الصادرة عن جامعة الدول العربية». ومن المقرر ان تعقد الجمعية العامة للامم المتحدة اجتماعاً غداً الثلاثاء مخصصاً لبحث الوضع في سوريا.
وتحفظت الجزائر على الدعوة لمجلس الامن وتقديم مشروع قرار الى الجمعية العامة للامم المتحدة، فيما تحفظ لبنان على جميع ما جاء في البيان الختامي. (تفاصيل صفحة 15)
وأعلن الوزراء «وقف جميع أشكال التعاون الدبلوماسي مع ممثلي النظام السوري في الدول والهيئات والمؤتمرات الدولية، ودعوة كافة الدول الحريصة على أرواح الشعب السوري إلى مواكبة الإجراءات العربية في هذا الشأن». ورحبوا «بدعوة تونس لاستضافة مؤتمر أصدقاء سوريا المقرر انعقاده في 24 شباط الحالي»، وأعلنوا «فتح قنوات اتصال مع المعارضة السورية وتوفير كافة أشكال الدعم السياسي والمادي لها، ودعوتها لتوحيد صفوفها والدخول في حوار جاد يحفظ لها تماسكها وفعاليتها قبل انعقاد مؤتمر تونس».

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February 12th, 2012, 10:33 pm


27. William Scott Scherk said:

Ehsani, thank you for the note on Idaf’s contribution to discussion. Like Revlon I salute him for opening the subject and giving personal witness. I further hope he will enter discussion, answer critical questions, and offer some specifics — as I underlined, media follows Syria Comment. If Idaf ‘has his finger on the pulse of what many call the “other” opposition in Syria,’ then he may be a good conduit of information about these forces.

Ghufran, you post a report of a recognition-failure of the SNC. Can you please add a link to the source of your information?

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February 12th, 2012, 10:34 pm


28. jad said:

A Torrent of Disinformation
The NeoCon Propaganda Machine Pushing “Regime Change” in Syria

“War with Iran is already here,” wrote a leading Israeli commentator recently, describing “the combination of covert warfare and international pressure” being applied to Iran.

Although not mentioned, the “strategic prize” of the first stage of this war on Iran is Syria; the first campaign in a much wider sectarian power-bid. “Other than the collapse of the Islamic Republic itself,” Saudi King Abdullah was reported to have said last summer, “nothing would weaken Iran more than losing Syria.”

By December, senior United States officials were explicit about their regime change agenda for Syria: Tom Donilon, the US National Security Adviser, explained that the “end of the [President Bashar al-] Assad regime would constitute Iran’s greatest setback in the region yet – a strategic blow that will further shift the balance of power in the region against Iran.”

Shortly before, a key official in terms of operationalizing this policy, Under Secretary of State for the Near East Jeffrey Feltman, had stated at a congressional hearing that the US would “relentlessly pursue our two-track strategy of supporting the opposition and diplomatically and financially strangling the [Syrian] regime until that outcome is achieved”.

What we are seeing in Syria is a deliberate and calculated campaign to bring down the Assad government so as to replace it with a regime “more compatible” with US interests in the region.

The blueprint for this project is essentially a report produced by the neo-conservative Brookings Institute for regime change in Iran in 2009. The report – “Which Path to Persia?” – continues to be the generic strategic approach for US-led regime change in the region.

A rereading of it, together with the more recent “Towards a Post-Assad Syria” (which adopts the same language and perspective, but focuses on Syria, and was recently produced by two US neo-conservative think-tanks) illustrates how developments in Syria have been shaped according to the step-by-step approach detailed in the “Paths to Persia” report with the same key objective: regime change.

The authors of these reports include, among others, John Hannah and Martin Indyk, both former senior neo-conservative officials from the George W Bush/Dick Cheney administration, and both advocates for regime change in Syria. Not for the first time are we seeing a close alliance between US/British neo-cons with Islamists (including, reports show, some with links to al-Qaeda) working together to bring about regime change in an “enemy” state.

Arguably, the most important component in this struggle for the “strategic prize” has been the deliberate construction of a largely false narrative that pits unarmed democracy demonstrators being killed in their hundreds and thousands as they protest peacefully against an oppressive, violent regime, a “killing machine” led by the “monster” Assad.



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February 12th, 2012, 10:44 pm


29. jad said:

One of the ‘patriot’ armed militiaman of FSA asking the support of Israel!!?

Rebel Syrian Officer Phones Israeli Official, Urging Intervention

“Deputy Minister for Development of the Negev and the Galilee Ayub Kara appeared on Israel’s Knesset channel and spoke over the phone with defecting Syrian Army officer Abu Bilal, who urged Israel to support the Syrian populace against President Bashar al-Assad’s terror.”

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February 12th, 2012, 10:48 pm


30. William Scott Scherk said:

Al-Watan (state-controlled) and Daypress News (state-controlled) report some muffled nothing about the new ‘draft’ constitution.

Reading the straight text, it is impossible to know how the next step is to be accomplished. Unnamed sources point to mid-March as the referendum day. The vote will not have any judicial supervision. The ‘committee’ of gnomes was charged by President Assad to “assume their responsibilities as a committee prepared to explain its [draft constitution’s] provisions to citizens by all means available.”

What does that mean? Daypress and SANA do not bother to name a single personage from the committee. Only Assad is mentioned. As-Safir’s story is even more mumbling and incoherent: the same SANA-ized boilerplate with a splash of further Assad quotes (this is machine-translated from the Arabic original here).

« President Assad open and listened to our discussions and our views and our proposals and assured Committee members that there was a large number of opinions about the various articles of the draft Constitution (157 items), but stressed that this project in the end is the product of a consensus and collectively to members of the Committee »

What the heck is in the new constitution, then? The report comes close to telling, then pulls back:

And whether President Assad asked the Committee to review any of the articles of the draft constitution, said Dallah: «I think that the project will be put on public opinion to a referendum as Slmnah to Mr. President», explaining at the same time that any amendment to its articles «return to President Assad».

[In] the next two days, promotion and inform the public by the media and published in several newspapers and at the site of participatory e-return for the Presidency of the Council of Ministers to be people on the aware of the draft constitution before the referendum »

This is terrible reporting, in my opinion.

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February 12th, 2012, 10:59 pm


31. Revlom said:

27. jad said:
((One of the ‘patriot’ armed militiaman of FSA asking the support of Israel!!? ))

You do not listen to the videos that you post, do you?
Neither the caller nor the Israeli official uttered the word FSA.
The accent of the caller is Palestenian.

The claim of the caller being an FSA, based on the lable of a video clip and the promotion of such video can only be done with carelessness or malicious intent at smearing the FSA.

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February 12th, 2012, 11:10 pm


32. jad said:

Syrian Rebels Likely Behind Aleppo Bombings

Suicide car bombings at two Syrian security facilities Feb. 10 killed at least 28 people and wounded hundreds more, the latest in a string of increasingly sophisticated attacks since November 2011 targeting the Syrian regime’s military and police infrastructure. The Syrian government accused “terrorist” rebels of conducting the attack. The Free Syrian Army (FSA) rebels denied any role in the bombings but issued a countercharge that the government itself staged the bombings to undermine the rebels. Despite its denial, the FSA or one of its offshoots most likely conducted the strikes and has denied responsibility in order to avoid being tainted by accusations of terrorism that could alienate potential foreign backers.
Several indications from the attacks demonstrate the party (or parties) responsible was operationally sophisticated and capable of executing the steps of the “attack cycle.” These steps consist of selecting the target, operational planning, deployment and attack and media exploitation. A group must be able to conduct extensive surveillance throughout the phases, acquiring the materials, successfully build the devices in a clandestine manner without alerting the authorities, and then have the device function as designed. The fact that they were able to successfully complete each of those steps despite a heavy security presence in Aleppo indicates this attack was carried out by a sophisticated group who possesses a great deal of experience in tradecraft ranging from surveillance to bombmaking.
It is likely that FSA soldiers or individuals associated with the FSA were behind the most recent attacks as well as those recorded since November 2011. There are indications that elements within the FSA are receiving at least some training and military support from foreign backers, which likely has played a role in developing the capabilities associated with carrying out IED attacks on government and security facilities. The FSA’s motivation in launching such attacks is not only to inflict damage on government installations and personnel in retaliation for the security forces’ attacks on the opposition movement, but also to elicit a harsher crackdown from the Syrian regime. A brutal crackdown would likely attract even greater international attention and cause a humanitarian crisis, which could prompt foreign military intervention — an FSA goal since its inception.

The Free Syrian Army has denied responsibility for the attacks, however. Opposition activists and members of the FSA said the facilities were heavily protected and no cars are permitted to park in the area and suggested that the attacks were staged by the regime. Such accusations have been prevalent since the first attack on a security facility in November. The opposition’s motivation for denying responsibility and blaming the government is to avoid having their movement tarred as terroristic in nature, a charge the government has leveled against the opposition since the unrest began.

It is very unlikely the Syrian regime staged this attack on their own facilities, as they do not stand to benefit from such a move besides having another opportunity to call the opposition “terrorists.” After the attack, gruesome images of dismembered corpses were immediately posted on the Syrian state media website in efforts to elicit a visceral reaction and convince Syrians and outside observers that the opposition movement should not be supported. Whoever was responsible, any attack on the security facilities harms the Syrian regime by raising serious questions about the strength of Syria’s internal security apparatus, which is central to the regime’s ability to hold power.

There is no reason to believe attacks on hardened security infrastructure will cease any time soon, nor will the propaganda war over responsibility. The regime will try to respond by cracking down on the opposition movement where it can while avoiding the kind of overreaction that could invite foreign intervention.


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February 12th, 2012, 11:11 pm


33. ann said:

Violence in Syria escalates by the day. The drumbeat for war in Washington mounts. Why Obama should go slow.


It is no wonder, then, that U.S. hawks chime in with their tried and true panaceas: secret arms aid, open arms aid, air protection for starters, bombing, whatever. In typical form, Sens. John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Joe Lieberman went further and said: “The bloodshed must be stopped, and we should rule out no option that could help to save lives.”

Yet the hawks do not make clear who would supply the arms, nor exactly who would receive them. Small arms, not heavy weapons, are now flowing from the Arabs and the Turks. Ask them and they’ll tell you that with more weapons, they foresee an all-out civil war, perhaps spilling into their countries. Assad would be deposed, but the price would be very high. Muddying the water further, there are lots of Syrian factions with widely divergent and conflicting views. Some want foreign arms and more; others don’t. Most haven’t given a clear thought to governing post-Assad.

Life after Assad probably would be more volatile than post–Hosni Mubarak Egypt. The Syrian political map is quite explosive: a potential rulership of Islamic extremists; Alawites like Assad who depend almost entirely on his rule; Christians who greatly fear the extremists for what they did to Christians in Iraq and Egypt; and good, solid Sunni businessmen who might not have the stomach for a battle. Nor can outsiders expect to control this ménage.

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February 12th, 2012, 11:16 pm


34. ann said:

27. jad said:

One of the ‘patriot’ armed militiaman of FSA asking the support of Israel!!?

They already have israel’s and al-qaeda’s support.

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February 12th, 2012, 11:20 pm


35. Sara said:

I sure hope you are right. I hope that there are such “rational political opposition groups ” working inside and believe in working towards a secular state where all is equal under the law and protect all minorities. I think this is the perfect time to push for a dialog with the government and have people inside the country rally around these groups and hopefully eventually have elections and peaceful transition of power. I can’t possibly support the so called FSA with all the threats and violence they are showing. Some syrians say they are justified, the regime pushed them to violence. There is no justifications to cutting soldiers heads off (as Paul Wood reported in his article in the guardian) just because they think they are “Shabiha” most soldiers are us, they are our sons in the service. When I imagine a scenario of the regime falling and the militias roaming the streets with guns I get petrified. I have many friends in Homs who are doctors and have nothing to do with politics had their offices ransacked by clueless people with weapons.(freedom fighters to some). An article in the nytimes about post gadafi Libya sent chills down my spine of a possible outcome for Syria. We lived under this regime for years and we know it. At least offer an alternative that will better lives…all lives not just the ones that say Allah Akbar.
An eye for an eye will make all syrians blind…

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February 12th, 2012, 11:23 pm


36. zoo said:

Turkey trapped by their discriminative laws on refugees


“I gave instructions today to lodge a request with the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in Geneva on the subject of humanitarian aid,” Anatolia News Agency quoted Davutoğlu as saying during a visit to Washington. “Turkey is launching an initiative at the U.N. office in Geneva to put in place a flow of humanitarian aid towards Syria,” he said. As the OHCHR does not have a humanitarian remit, the initiative would likely be taken up by the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).”

That’s why

The Turks have a problem, because according to their laws they don’t accept refugees for people coming from non-european countries. That’s an oddity of their law. This is why they have is been calling the syrians their ‘guests’ and bore all the costs of housing etc..
It is costing a lot and it is dragging on.
They can’t get UN funds without the Syrians been declared ‘refugees’, which is against their law.
This is why they are invoking a ‘human tragedy’ to try to get some money from some organization other than the UNCHR without declaring the syrians as “refugees” as ‘refugees’ have rights they are not ready to give them.


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February 12th, 2012, 11:34 pm


37. jad said:

صراعات المنطقة بعيون اقتصادية: الأجندة الخفية

ما بعد الفيتوين الروسي والصيني غير ما قبلهما، خريطة استراتيجية جديدة في طريقها إلى الرسم في المنطقة بأبعاد سياسية وعسكرية واقتصادية، قد تكون مقدمة لحرب باردة من نوع جديد، مع انقسام العالم إلى معسكرين واضحي المعالم، في أجواء تذكّر بما كان سائداً قبل اندلاع الحروب العالميّة

حسن خليل
كان لافتاً ما صرّح به الجنرال المتقاعد ليونيد إيغاشوف، عضو مجلس القيادة العسكرية الروسية سابقاً، بقوله عندما سئل عن المناورات الروسية في حال جرى ضرب إيران عسكرياً: «سوف تستعرض هذه المناورات استعداد روسيا لحماية مصالحها الوطنية بقوة السلاح، ولتعزيز موقفها السياسي بالقوة العسكرية». ربط الجنرال السابق سوريا بإيران، وقال إنهما حليفا روسيا المضمونان، وتساءل إن كانت الضربة ستوجه إلى سوريا أو إلى إيران أولاً، جازماً بأن أيّ ضربة لإحداهما هي ضربة للمصالح الروسية، وستؤدي إلى خسارة كبيرة لها. ولذلك، فإن روسيا بدفاعها عن سوريا إنما تدافع عن مصالحها القومية وعن العالم الحر ضد الفاشية المستشرية أخيراً على غرار النمط الهتلري.


الصين وروسيا

يجمع الخبراء المصرفيون على أنّ من غير المنطقي (انطلاقاً من السؤال الأخير) على الغرب أن يواجه الصين وروسيا اقتصادياً، ومن ورائهما الهند، تحت أي ظرف، نتيجة ترابط الاقتصاد العالمي والمديونية العالمية. أما بالنسبة إلى العالم العربي، فليس لروسيا تبادل تجاري يُذكر سوى السلاح، وزبونها الأول هو سوريا بعد أن خسرت ليبيا.
أما الصين فالتهديد بمقاطعة بضائعها عربياً أشبه برمي حصاة في بحر هائج. فبحسب فلينت لافريت، الباحث في «مؤسسة أميركا الجديدة»، الصين فقدت ثقتها بالولايات المتحدة في إدارة النزاعات في الشرق الاوسط، ولذلك فهي قلقة بشأن أمن تمويلها بالطاقة من هذه المنطقة. صحيح أن حجم التصدير الصيني إلى دول الشرق الأوسط، بما فيها تركيا، قد تضاعف من 28 مليار دولار سنة 2005 إلى 59 مليار سنة 2010، ولكن استيرادها أيضاً ارتفع إلى 65 مليار دولار من 34 ملياراً. حجم التصدير الصيني إلى المنطقة يساوي حوالى 7% فقط من التصدير الاجمالي، يقوم به صغار التجار، بينما استيراد الصين حيوي، لكون أكثره نفطاً وغازاً تقوم به الدولة.
وتعتبر الصين أكبر مستورد للنفط الشرق أوسطي في العالم، حيث تستهلك حوالى 23% من التصدير الإيراني الذي يساوي حوالى 11% من الحاجة الصينية. كذلك فإن الصين وروسيا تتعاملان مع المنطقة بدون إملاء رغباتهما إلا في إطار علاقات العمل، عكس الولايات المتحدة التي تمارس الضغوط مقابل توفير الحماية الأمنية لدول المنطقة، ولا تتردد دول الخليج في الجهر بذلك. في المقابل، تُعتبر الصين الشريك التجاري الأول لأميركا (يبلغ حجم التصدير إليها حوالى 240 مليار دولار، والاستيراد 77 مليار، وهذا يساوي عشرة أضعاف حجم التبادل بين الصين وإيران). فهل ستختار الصين بين أميركا وإيران؟ وهذا السؤال بمنحى آخر يُسأل للروس.
الجواب ليس بهذه البساطة، ولن يأتي من باب حجم التبادل التجاري الذي لن توقفه مواقف سياسية في محطات ما، حيث يقول جوني الترمان، مدير مركز الدراسات الاستراتيجية الدولية ـــ لندن، إن الصين لن تضع نفسها في موقف اختيار، وستبقي علاقات مع الطرفين، لكن تطور الأمور في سوريا اليوم والمحاصرة المستمرة لإيران دفعتا بعض المراقبين إلى الاختلاف مع الترمان بشأن هذا التقييم؛ فروسيا والصين تنظران بقلق إلى السيطرة شبه الكاملة عسكرياً للولايات المتحدة وحلفائها على منطقة الشرق الأوسط، وخاصة دول الطاقة. فهناك القاعدة الأكبر في قطر، والقاعدة البحرية للأسطول الخامس في البحرين، والقاعدة الفرنسية في أبو ظبي، والقاعدة المزدوجة مع بريطانيا في عُمان. ولذلك فإن روسيا والصين قلقتان من إمكان الابتزاز المستقبلي لهما للحصول على الطاقة، وهذا ما يبرر خاصة الموقف الصيني الداعم لروسيا، حيث للأخيرة اكتفاء ذاتي في الطاقة.

حدود الحصار ومأزق تركيا

يتساءل المراقبون عن إمكان صمود إيران وسوريا مالياً واقتصادياً في وجه محاصرتهما، لكون الدول المعنية لا تستطيع إرضاخهما عسكرياً. مما لا شك فيه أن العملات الرئيسية من الدولار والجنيه الاسترليني واليورو، باتت غير متوافرة للدولتين المستهدفتين، كذلك هي الحال بالنسبة إلى الحصار الاقتصادي من تصدير مواد رئيسية إليهما، كالمواد الأولية أو استثمارات تحتاج إليها الدولتان لتطوير بنيتهما التحتية أو النفطية. لا تظهر حتى الآن جدّية تطبيق حظر استيراد النفط والغاز ومشتقاته، وما هو واضح حتى الآن أن الحظر ما هو إلا تهويل إعلامي لن يبدأ تطبيقه قبل تموز 2012، ولذلك ردّت إيران بتهديد معاكس.
صحيح أن الأمن القومي الروسي والصيني مهددان بالدرع الصاروخية الاميركية وبالتمدد الاسلامي على النموذج التركي الذي يرتبط بالعرق التركماني والنزعة الانفصالية، كما حصل في الشيشان أو بعض مقاطعات الصين سابقاً، وصحيح أن تركيا هي لاعب أساسي إن لم تكن اللاعب الأساسي كأداة لتنفيذ هذا التهديد من قبل الناتو، لكونها أكبر مركز له خارج أوروبا، لكن تركيا معنية أيضاً بألا تتفاقم الأمور خارج السيطرة، لأن نموّها الاقتصادي واستقرارها في العشر سنوات الأخيرة وارتفاع سعر عملتها قائمة أساساً على الاستقرار الاقليمي، بعد أن يئست تركيا من أوروبا ووجّهت بوصلتها نحو الشرق الغني بدل أن تلتحق بأوروبا مستجدية. لكن تركيا خففت من لهجتها التصعيدية تجاه سوريا، وهي أصلاً لم تصعّد إطلاقاً تجاه إيران نتيجة شعورها بأن أي مواجهة حتمية ستزعزع الاستقرار السياسي التركي نتيجة تعقيدات تركيبة المجتمع فيها، وستهدّد ركائز الاقتصاد الذي استغرق سنوات مريرة ليصل إلى ما هو عليه، والذي يعتمد على حركة تجارية تصل إلى 30 مليار دولار مع العراق، فضلاً عن الاستثمارات فيه وفي كردستان، وإلى 15 مليار دولار مع إيران ويتجه تصاعدياً إلى 40 مليار خلال الخمس سنوات المقبلة. إذن هناك حدود معينة تربط يدي تركيا للمساهمة في الحصار على سوريا وإيران.
بالنسبة إلى حركة البضائع والتجارة البينية، فمن الصعب تطبيق مقاطعة ما من دون أخذ قرارات حكومية بذلك، لأن الشعوب نادراً ما تلتزم، فكيف ستفعل ذلك في هذه الأجواء غير المنطقية، وهي التي لم تطبّق فعلياً برنامج مقاطعة إسرائيل ولا البضائع الدنماركية في أزمة الرسوم الكاريكاتورية.


إلى أين؟

التطورات الأخيرة في المنطقة فتحت نافذة استراتيجية لروسيا والصين لفرض نفسيهما شريكاً فعلياً في النفوذ على مصادر الطاقة قد لا يحصلان عليها مستقبلاً إن بقيتا متفرجتين اليوم. روسيا حتماً لا ثقة متبادلة بينها وبين الولايات المتحدة، أما الصين فثقتها تتزعزع باستمرار نتيجة التدخل الأميركي في شؤونها الداخلية ومطالبتها المستمرة بالمساهمة في خطّها السياسي التي رأت الصين أنها تفضل النأي عنه، وآخرها قلقها العميق من جدية التوسع العسكري الأميركي مشرقاً.
أما بالنسبة إلى الأمن القومي الاقتصادي، فقد كتبت جريدة التايمز البريطانية عن الاحتياط النفطي العراقي بأنه سيكون قريباً الأكبر في العالم، ليصل إلى 350 مليار برميل، بعد أن كانت الأرقام السابقة تقدّره بـ143 مليار برميل. وهذه الأرقام تجعل العراق الأهم استراتيجياً بين دول النفط، وخاصة أن التنقيب يجري على عمق قليل، عكس الدول الأخرى. ومن المتوقع في حال جرى الاستثمار فيه أن يرفع إنتاجه اليومي من مليوني برميل يومياً إلى 6 ملايين برميل خلال العشر سنوات المقبلة.
أما إيران، فقد ثبت أن لديها الاحتياط الثاني في العالم من الغاز بمقدار 33 تريليون متر مكعب، أكثره في مناطق غير متصلة بعضها ببعض. إضافة إلى ذلك، وبحسب مركز الدراسات النفطية الإيرانية، فإن إيران لديها ثالث احتياط نفطي في العالم، وثاني مصدّر أيضاً. فإيران تنتج حوالى 4.2 ملايين برميل يومياً، تصدّر منها حوالى 2.6 مليون برميل، وتتوقع وكالة مهر الإخبارية أن يصل إيراد إيران من الطاقة إلى 250 مليار دولار إذا ما طوّرت حقولها في المستقبل.
هذه الأرقام كألحان الموسيقى للآذان الروسية والصينية، خاصة بعد مقاطعة الشركات الأميركية والأوروبية لعمليات التنقيب. فمن المعلوم أن كلاً من إيران والعراق سينفقان بين 100 مليار و500 مليار دولار خلال السنوات المقبلة في تطوير قدراتهما في الطاقة، وهذه المبالغ مغرية جداً للشركات الصينية والآسيوية.
لكن الأهم أن الصين وروسيا لن تُفرّطاً بفرصة سانحة طرأت عليهما نتيجة الإدارة الغربية للأزمات، لتصبحا شريكاً منافساً ومضارباً لتأمين أمنهما القومي الاقتصادي من جهة، ولإعادة التوازن عسكرياً في ضوء الاندفاع القوي والعناد الأميركي لإكمال نشر منظومة الصواريخ في تركيا وروسيا وبولندا حتى مشارف شرق آسيا.
لا أحد يمكنه أن يتوقع ما ستؤول إليه الأمور، وكيف يمكن أن تتفاقم. ولكن الثابت أن الحالة الردعية القائمة حالياً بين المعسكرين هي جدّية، ولو حتى بين أميركا وحلفائها من جهة وإيران وحلفائها من جهة أخرى. فالأكيد أن أيّ مغامرة من أحد الطرفين لاختبار الآخر ستؤدي إلى كوارث قد تهدد الاستقرار العالمي، ولا بد من إيجاد ممر يسلكه الطرفان لإعادة تسوية ما تقدم على الاعتراف بأن الساحة تسع الطرفين، وإلا قد تصل الأمور إلى ما يشبه أزمة الصواريخ الكوبية سنة 1961.
صحيح أن التهديد الأميركي يصل إلى مقاطعة بعض الشركات الآسيوية إذا التزمت تعهدات في سوريا وإيران، لكن يعتقد الباحثون أن التطورات الأخيرة ستجعل روسيا والصين خلف إيران وسوريا بالكامل، ولن تسمحا لهاتين الدولتين بأن تضعفا بعدما وصلت المواجهة إلى هذه الحدود. لذلك بات العالم في حرب باردة جديدة، ولم تبدأ المواجهة حتى الآن، ولكنه في حرب فاترة مع بعض الفقاقيع. إنه عالم مجنون تحكمه الغطرسة وغرور القوة، مع مفارقة واضحة: أحد طرفي هذا الصراع يعتبر نفسه في مواجهة تقليدية، بينما يجد الطرف الآخر أنه في صراع وجودي.
هل وصل العالم إلى ظروف ما قبل الحروب العالمية حيث خلا من العقلاء؟


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February 12th, 2012, 11:44 pm


38. zoo said:

Here they come…
Egypt’s economy is crippled by unrest but GCC states could offer vital help
Majid Jafar
Feb 13, 2012

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February 12th, 2012, 11:44 pm


39. zoo said:

Syria…let your conscience govern
By Tariq Alhomayed
“The Arab League today must take three major steps; the first to expel the al-Assad regime from its organization. Secondly, it must recognize the Syrian National Council (SNC), and thirdly it must call for the establishment of the “friends of the Syrian people group”, to support the unarmed Syrians and undertake diplomatic efforts for everything relating to the Security Council.”

Result: NONE

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February 12th, 2012, 11:50 pm


40. Aldendeshe said:

What happened to the post typed when I woke up this morning? I think that was today, oh yes it was, and it was deleted totally. You see, I studied marketing, now help me out here, what did you, whoever removed it, objected to, no hard feeling, I have copy of it, just wants the data, ok, how one can learn without it.

[NOTE – the post contained crude national stereotypes, and edged into provocation. ]

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February 12th, 2012, 11:53 pm


41. zoo said:

The situation in Syria, a key piece in a strategic confrontation

By Scarlett HADDAD | 13/02/2012
L’Orient Le Jour 13 February 2012 ( translated from french)

We are seeing now a race between the Russian project and the pressure from the Arab League and the international community to bring down the Syrian regime.
On the one hand, the regime of Bashar al-Assad is trying to save time, trying to tame those he regards as terrorists, especially in their strongholds in Homs and Edleb, and the other hand the opponents to the regime seek to increase the pressure diplomatically encircling and pushing the opposition to unite and strengthen themselves militarily.

Diplomatic communities closer to the countries of the Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) reveal that the Russians – who fully support the regime for strategic reasons – have a proposed solution that consists in pushing some opponents to engage in a dialogue with the regime to bring about structural reforms and to form a new government that would include members of the Baath Party, independents and opponents, with a substantial part granted to the Kurds.
The same sources claim that the Syrian regime has promised to accelerate the reform process and the holding of a national dialogue, but the problem is that the opponents, even those inside are been submitted to pressures from the radical opposition that rejects any form of dialogue with the regime.

That is why it is necessary to first weaken “the hotbeds of the rebellion” in Homs and Edleb to pave the way for such a dialog.
The last visit of the Russian Minister of Foreign Syria has been particularly important in this regard. This has ensured the regime’s intentions and his determination to push forward the reforms, while asking about developments on the ground.

With its Chinese allies, he is said to have promised he would do his best to bring some opponents to accept a dialogue with the regime. But this project meets both the continuing military operations, in Homs and Edleb in particular, and an upsurge in violence across the country, including Aleppo, via car bombs and suicide attacks .

For the Syrian regime and its allies, it is a clear attempt on the part of the armed opposition to prevent any breakthrough towards a national dialogue. For critics of the regime, it is clear that whenever the latter retakes areas from the armed opposition, a new violence flares in the country to redistribute the cards and cause an international diplomatic uproar preventing any possibility of contact with moderate opponents. Moreover, the regime and its allies are linking the renewed violence with diplomatic meetings in the Security Council and Cairo, so that the images of victims mark public opinion and influence decisions.

The diplomatic sources close to the BRICS added that the regime still has many elements of strength, including the incredible cohesion of the Syrian army, which surprised many Western analysts.
This army, which has nearly 400,000 elements, including thousands of officers, has only seen so far the defection of a colonel, Riad el-Assaad, founder of Free the Army of Syria, and a general, Sheikh Mustafa, who launched the offensive Zabadani alone without coordinating with al-Assaad. Besides all attempts to push both men to integrate the same military formation have failed so far, al-Assaad refusing to be under the orders of Sheikh, even if it has the rank of general.

The regime makes use of this kind of conflict between the deserters and opponents in general, as it considers the cohesion of his army quite satisfactory.

Assad also continues to have the support of minorities, although many efforts are being made to make Christians and Druze to distance themselves from him, and finally, he is still supported by the merchant class, the economic situation of the country being considered quite acceptable.

Aleppo plants operate at full capacity to meet the Iraqi market which has opned its doors, while the surplus crop is purchased by Iran. So for now, economic sanctions have not had a decisive impact on the regime, and as noted by a diplomat, these sanctions have never toppled any regime. One need only recall the case of Iraq under Saddam Hussein submitted for over ten years to a severe embargo.
For all these reasons, sources close to the BRICS believe that the Assad regime is still strong and can take a long time, barring the unforeseen. Especially since he has the strategic support of Russia which regards Syria as its bridgehead in an area particularly rich in energy resources, and Iran, which considers the fall of the Syrian regime as an attempt to weaken it.

But it must simultaneously accelerate the reform process, that the Syrian president committed to the Russian authorities.

Meanwhile, the Western camp seeks to circumvent the Security Council blocked by the double veto Russia and China, by increasing the pressure of the Arab League and pushing the international recognition of the Syrian National Council, while giving a tacit green light in arming the opposition. This announces new waves of violence in Syria.
The situation remains confused and Syria has become a centerpiece in the standoff that pits the United States and its European and Arab allies to Iran and its allies Russian and Chinese targets.

The situation in Syria now crystallizes the new division of the world and it leaves no one indifferent. Especially not Lebanon where the politic of staying away advocated by the Prime Minister is every day a little more exposed to developments in the field and criticism from both sides. A position increasingly uncomfortable on the backdrop of political and religious tensions.

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February 13th, 2012, 12:32 am


42. Yazan said:

ينصر دينك يا إيداف!

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February 13th, 2012, 12:43 am


43. jad said:

Haytham Male7 is unhappy that AL and the gulf goat’s princes didn’t recognize his MB council yet or handed any of the ’empty’ Syrian embassies to take care of the Syrian expats…as if they have any power to change the toilet papers in those embassies!

المالح: كنا ننتظر أكثر من ذلك خاصة الاعتراف بالمجلس الوطني ممثلا رسميا

وصف عضو المكتب التنفيذي في “المجلس الوطني السوري” هيثم المالح، قرارات وزراء الخارجية العرب بـ”القرارات التي لا بأس بها”، لافتا إلى أن “المجلس الوطني كان ينتظر أكثر من ذلك، خاصة لجهة الاعتراف رسميا به ممثلا للشعب السوري”.
واضاف المالح لـ”الشرق الأوسط” انه “نحن في مرحلة نحتاج فيها لكيان سياسي يمثل السوريين في الخارج، وهذا الأمر مفروض أن يحسم في القريب العاجل”، كاشفا أنه “كانت هناك إشارات إيجابية في الأيام القليلة الماضية لجهة اعتراف مجلس التعاون الخليجي بالمجلس الوطني”، متوقعا أن “يتم ذلك قريبا، خاصة أن أكثر من سفارة سورية فرغت من موظفيها، وبالتالي، بات يتوجب على المجلس الوطني أن يسير مصالح الشعب السوري في الخارج”.
واعتبر المالح أنه “إذا نجحت الجامعة العربية بالتعاون مع مجلس الأمن في إرسال قوات حفظ سلام دولية إلى سوريا، فإن ذلك سيضع حدا للمجازر التي يرتكبها النظام بحق المدنيين العزل”، وأضاف “يبدو أن الروس أدركوا أنهم وقعوا في فخ كبير، وها هم اليوم يتصلون بأكثر من طرف وفريق للإعراب عن ندمهم”، متوقعا “تغييرا قريبا في موقفهم”.


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February 13th, 2012, 12:59 am


44. Halabi said:

Sara #33 wrote:

“There is no justifications to cutting soldiers heads off (as Paul Wood reported in his article in the guardian) just because they think they are “Shabiha” most soldiers are us, they are our sons in the service.”

Paul Wood said the FSA killed Shabiha, not soldiers, but didn’t specify how. The Shabiha cut off the heads of prisoners who had their hands tied behind their backs. Below is the relevant part of his excellent article. I agree no heads should be chopped off, even the most hardened murder, caught in the act should be given a fair trial, something we haven’t seen in 42 years in Assad’s Syria.

“Afterwards one of the Free Army fighters showed me a video he had taken in December. A dozen men in Syrian army uniform were lined up facing a wall. They arms were raised; one turns to the camera looking petrified. Some were still bleeding. Despite their army uniforms, he said their ID cards showed they were Shabiha, or “ghosts”, the hated government paramilitary force.

“We killed them,” he told me.

“You killed your prisoners?”

“Yes, of course, that is the policy for Shabiha.”

I checked with an officer. While soldiers were released, he said, members of the Shabiha were executed after a hearing before a panel of Free Syrian Army military judges. To explain, they showed me film taken from the mobile phone of a captured Shabiha. Prisoners lay face down on the ground, hands tied behind their backs. One by one, their heads were cut off. The man wielding the knife said, tauntingly, to the first: “This for freedom.” As his victim’s neck opened, he went on: “This is for our martyrs. And this is for collaborating with Israel.””


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February 13th, 2012, 1:15 am


45. jad said:

حازم نهار
هاجس “الاعتراف”:
أصبح الهاجس الأساسي لـ “المجلس الوطني السوري” هو الحصول على اعتراف عربي دولي، ربما لأن هذا “الاعتراف المحتمل” هو البوابة الوحيدة التي بإمكانها من جهة أولى إنقاذ المجلس من التفكك، والتغطية على قصور فعله السياسي خلال الفترة الماضية من جهة ثانية. أعتقد أن الأساس هو القيام بأداء سياسي رفيع وإثبات فاعلية حقيقية إزاء المهام الجوهرية للثورة، لأن ذلك وحده يمكنه أن يأتي باعتراف لا يكون عبئاً على الثورة والمعارضة والمجتمع السوري ككل، بل وعلى المجلس ذاته.


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February 13th, 2012, 1:20 am


46. Juergen said:

Bahrain’s King Says Assad Should Listen to His People

The king of Bahrain, Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa, has called on Syrian President Bashar Assad to listen to his people. Hamad told SPIEGEL in an interview that it was up to the Syrians to decide whether Assad should step down. “The best advice for him is from the Syrian people,” he said.


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February 13th, 2012, 3:40 am


47. Antoine said:

NORMAN said :

” I hunk it might be the right time for the Christians to ask for their own country in the Mideast or be treated equally.”

Well, we got Lebanon from the Sunnis, as a Christian homeland, unfortunately your Arab Natonaists and Baathists could not tolerate the fact and wanted Iranian Muslims to run Lebanon.

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February 13th, 2012, 3:55 am


48. HAT said:

Beside fully agreeing with Revlon, that you are neither specific nor fully in touch with the reality in Syria. Further comments are needed to complete Revlon’s point. Opposition groups such 23 of February, The Workers Party, Riyad Turk’s group, or the Arab Socialist Union in addition to other leftist groups don’t constitute 4,000 member at best. You can add sympathizer and other affiliated liberals the numbers could reach to 60K. Perhaps adding family and friends the number could reach 200K. Simply put the Muslim brotherhood can tally such a number in Aleppo alone. We can add the disorganized western leaning liberals to triple the number to around 600K but they are disorganized without political representation. Unless you can educate the rest of us a little, name some of the groups you have mentioned. Give us some numbers at least, or just where about can detect there work?

Change in Syria requires a unified opposition. People and the media need faces to bring some legitimacy to its reporting. So don’t blame it on the media alone. How can you rally the streets in Syria and keep the momentum against the regime going? Or do you want this momentum crushed? Who forced the bloody outcome in Syria but the regime itself? The Assad family utilize force, yet complain about it at the same time ready to convince the public that others want to destroy Syria (Syria=Assad or nothing formula). Simple equation drilled in minorities mind during Bashar’s rule, while his father utilized the peripheries (villages against city center).

Unfortunately many are still resisting to the reality that Islamists are coming to power. Islamists have built their forces not only because they have been marginalized, but this regime has not allowed any political discourse or participation. Religious groups in Syria as in any other place around the world have the means to organize and build communities through places of Worship. Similar opportunity was denied to seculars since the Nassir’s UAR, then the arrival of Baath in Syria. Certainly, Baath party is the singular organization that seculars especially among minorities can find as a shelter against the possible rise of Islamist.

Many of us may not want MB’s in power, but the longer you keep Sunni out, the more radicalized (Islamic wise) the Sunni majority in Syria is becoming; A perfect formula to break Syria apart. The sooner you can get the current regime out of power the better the chances Syria will avoid an all-out civil war and its collapse as a nation. I’ve said it since early 80’s, compare the mainly secular Sunni’s of Syria during 1960’s that identified with Europe to the current Sunni’s who tend to identify more with Saudi Arabia. I see it in my family let alone the rest of Damascus.

To affect the future liberals should actively participate with the SNC to have a voice. Facing off with the MB will lead to an autocratic religious regime paranoid of minorities with significantly weak liberal elements. Steering them into Democracy is the only possible outcome other than having them shape the future alone. To shape the future of Syria there has to be a united front where neither Sunnis view minorities as complicit in their oppression, nor for the minorities to be marginalized and oppressed. The scariest scenarios is spelled by the likes of Tom Friedman that Syria was stitched together by the Europeans. He ignores the history of the most diverse society that lived peacefully since dawn of civilization. Like it or not this is the Syrian society I know and it will prevail united.

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February 13th, 2012, 3:57 am


49. Juergen said:

Syria categorically Rejects the Arab League’s Resolutions as hostile act

Syrian Arab Republic categorically rejects the Arab League resolution issued on Sunday, Syria’s Ambassador in Cairo Yousef Ahmed said today, reminding that, since the beginning, Syria was not concerned in any resolution issued within its absence.

“The Arab Ministerial Council’s decision has shamefully reflected the reality of abducing the Arab joint action, the League decisions and falsifying the Arab collective will by governments of Arab Countries led by Qatar and Saudi Arabia.. it also showed a state of Hysteria and stumble that these governments are passing through after their failure in the UN Security council to call for foreign intervention in the Syrian affairs,” Ahmad, Syria’s permanent Representative to the Arab League added.


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February 13th, 2012, 3:59 am


50. Syrialover said:

Idaf is a real person talking about real people in a real situation about which he really knows something and has a real stake.

How refreshing to read it. It’s what SC is here for. Sure, it’s his particular perceptions, interpretations and opinions but it’s something that feels authentic and linked to people inside Syria.

The reality of what people actually do and think and feel on the ground in situations like Syria is light years removed from all the desk judgements and theorising and fantasising and criticising that people here go on with.

As Idaf says:”They are multiple movements shaping and reshaping on weekly basis. Most activists are learning and maturing with time. They change their views and jump from one group to another according to events and developments. When one’s friend or family gets detained or killed they move from peaceful to supporting violence. When you argue with those supporting violence they change their mind, etc. The movements are in constant change but you can notice the fast organic maturity.”

For those who don’t welcome what else Idaf says, check out the evidence-based studies that support his real life observation on the separation of politics and active revolution.

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February 13th, 2012, 4:01 am


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