Will Sanctions Bring Down the Syrian Regime?

Will Sanctions Bring Down the Syrian Regime?

It is doubtful that sanctions alone will cause regime-change in Syria. Economic deprivation and reduced government spending does not usually lead to regime-change. It is hard to think of a Middle Eastern government that has been brought down by sanctions. Some of the countries that have faced sanctions for decades are Iran, Iraq, Libya, and Sudan. Of course Gaza has faced severe sanctions in an effort to bring down the Hamas government with very little success. What sanctions do very effectively is make people poor and hungry. Governments are good at passing along the pain.  In Gaza there is 80% unemployment and widespread malnutrition but no regime change. The UN estimates that sanctions on Iraq killed over 300,000 Iraqis in the 1990s. Starving Syrians is not the intention of US and European policy makers who imposed the sanctions. They continue to insist that Assad will step down due to sanctions. But what Arab leader has ever stepped down as a result of having his country sanctioned? As Albert Einstein said, “Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.”

The good policy makers in Western capitals are not insane, so what are they up to?

  1. Are they simply imposing sanctions because it is a politically inexpensive way to do something? After all, military intervention, which is the tested method to bring about regime change, is unthinkable today.
  2. Could some policy makers be hoping to ratchet up the humanitarian disaster in Syria in order to create an “intervention friendly environment” down the road? This seems far fetched but the humanitarian argument was one of the more persuasive rationals for intervening in Iraq. The more extreme the disaster, the more extreme solutions people are willing to entertain.

The problem with sanctions is that they destroy national institutions, decimate the middle class, and degrade society. We saw this in Iraq. The results are not pretty. They make building democracy all the more difficult when the offending regime is finally overturned. The only thing we know about democracy promotion with any certainty is that its chances of success rise exponentially with greater per capita GDP.  A long sanctions regime can only hurt democracy promotion. We all know about the magic of the middle class. It is hard to do anything constructive in a country without one.

Religion. The Arab League vote split the Arab countries along Shiite-Sunni lines. Countries with large Shiite populations — Lebanon, Iraq and Yemen — voted with Syria or abstained. Another troubling aspect of the Syrian conflict is that the region’s minorities are remaining faithful to Assad and Syria’s Alawi-led regime even as it grows increasingly isolated. The Christian minority in the region has come out fairly solidly behind Assad. Egyptian Copts prayed for Assad in a large stadium the other day (Egyption Christians pray for Syrians And Syrian President 11-12-2011). Syriac Orthodox Archbishop of Aleppo, Yohana Ibrahim, said President Bashar al-Assad was “the best man” to lead reform in Syria. (Syrian archbishop says ‘everyone loves’ Assad). The Maronite Patriarch of Lebanon upset many when he backed Assad and warned against regime-change in Syria. The growing religious divide in the Middle East is not new, but it is troubling. It suggests that Assad will not relinquish power, as King Abdullah of Jordan and other regional leaders are urging him to do. It also suggests that Assad’s base support among minorities will not crumble easily. Religion has a way of making martyrs.

A friend writes that his parents cannot find cooking gas in Aleppo. The replacement bottles for the stove are unavailable in the market. Mazoot, or fuel-oil, which is used to heat homes, power taxis and farm equipment is also absent, or available at high prices. Aleppo authorities also warn that extended electric cuts are coming due to lack of power. Syria is facing a cold winter. Older people are standing in lines to get small containers of mazoot filled.  The Syrian pound has fallen to 54.25 to a dollar.

News Round Up

Pro-Syrian regime protesters, carry a giant Syrian flag during a demonstration against the Arab League decision to suspend Syria, in Damascus, Syria, November 13, 2011. Similar pro-government demonstrations were held in Aleppo and Latakia.

DJ Arab League To Send 500 Observers To Syria, 2011-11-14

 CAIRO (AFP)–The Arab League is preparing to send observers to Syria but needs guarantees from Damascus on their mission and the rights of each side, the organization’s chief, Nabil al-Arabi, said Monday.

Foreign Policy

An estimated 70people have been killed mostly in clashes between Syrian security forces and defectors in the southern city of Dera’a, in what has been the bloodiest day since the start of the uprisings. Meanwhile, crowds angered by comments byJordanian King Abdullah urging President Bashar al-Assad to step down stormed the Jordanian embassy in Damascus, bringing down the country’s flag.

The suspension and imposition of sanctions by the Arab League on Syria that is due to take effect on Wednesday is being met with uproar from the Syrian regime and its supporters. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem denounced the move as an “illegal” and “dangerous step” saying that “Syria will not budge and will emerge stronger…and plots against Syria will fail.” Regime supporters attacked the Turkish, Saudi Arabian, and Qatari embassies in protest of the suspension.Foreign governments have had varied responses. Russia condemned the suspension accusing Western nations of inciting the opposition. Angered by the attack on its embassy, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davultoglu asserted, “We will take the most resolute stance against these attacks and we will stand by the Syrian people’s rightful struggle.”The European Union reached an agreement to extend sanctions. King Abdullah of Jordan called for Bashar al-Assad to resign stating, “If Bashar has the interest of his country, he would step down, but he would also create an ability to reach out and start a new phase of Syrian political life. Syria has requested an emergency meeting with the Arab League prior to the suspension and said it will meet with representatives from the opposition on Tuesday.

EU Places New Sanctions on Syria – Wall Street Journal

European Union foreign ministers announced new sanctions on Syria even as they insisted that the situation in the country didn’t merit the same military response they mounted in Libya earlier this year.

Turkey May Review Energy Supplies to Syria, Minister Says, 2011-11-15, By Emre Peker

Nov. 15 (Bloomberg) — Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said the government is currently providing power supplies to Syria and may reconsider “all decisions” on the matter if its southern neighbor’s policies don’t change, according to state-run Anatolia news agency…..

Iranian Officials Meet With Syrian Opposition – 2011-11-14, by Richard Spencer in the Telegraph

Iranian officials have held talks with Syrian opposition leaders, in a dramatic sign of the growing isolation of the regime of President Bashar al-Assad. Several separate opposition sources have told The Daily Telegraph that Iran opened a channel to a “moderate” opposition group about a month ago. Officials met Haytham Manna and other members of a group known as the National Coordinating Body for Democratic Change, or the National Coordi

nating Committee. The group is strongly opposed to foreign intervention in Syria, and is likely to be seen as more acceptable to Iran than the largest group, the Syrian National Council, which has argued for “international protection” for civilians…..

هيئة التنسيق ستزور قطر .. والمناع يوضح موقفه ويؤكد : الحل يجب أن يكون عربياً Haytham Manna

هيئة التنسيق ستزور قطر .. والمناع يوضح موقفه ويؤكد : الحل يجب أن يكون عربياً | عكس السير دوت كوم

Syria’s fragmented opposition
As anti-government forces try to develop a united voice, Al Jazeera looks at the disparate groups within.
Roxanne Horesh Last Modified: 10 Nov 2011 13:42

Syria’s economy is key to Assad’s future
By Liz Sly, Monday, November 14

BEIRUT — The dramatic decision by Arab states to turn against President Bashar al-Assad could further damage Syria’s economy at a time when it is already unraveling, posing perhaps a graver challenge to Assad’s survival than the country’s nearly-eight-month-old popular uprising, analysts say.

The broader loss of regional support represents an important psychological blow to a regime that has long prided itself as a champion of Arab nationalist causes. In one indicator of how far Assad’s fortunes have fallen, Jordan’s King Abdullah II suggested Monday that the Syrian president step down, though he hedged that call, telling the BBC that Assad needed to ensure an orderly transition.

It was, nonetheless, the most explicit rejection yet by an Arab leader of Assad’s rule ahead of an Arab League meeting Wednesday to discuss further measures against Syria, including economic sanctions.

They could have a more profound and immediate effect than the withdrawal of political support, given that Western powers are ruling out military intervention and anti-government demonstrations have seen neither the protest movement nor the Syrian security forces gain a decisive advantage. On Monday, the European Union announced that it would expand its sanctions, to include 18 more individuals associated with the Assad regime and denial of access to the European Investment Bank.

“The economy is a trigger of a lot of other issues on a broader level,” said Ayham Kamel, Middle East analyst with the Eurasia Group. The business community has supported Assad so far, he said, “but over a longer period of time, they’re going to reevaluate.”

The extent of the damage is difficult to measure, and Syrian government officials say they don’t have indicators. But they do not play down the gravity of the situation.

Syrian Economy Minister Mohammad Nidal al-Shaar said at a conference last month that the economy is in a “state of emergency,” according to comments quoted by the Damascus-based Syria Report. In a recent interview in Damascus, Adib Mayalah, governor of the Central Bank of Syria, described the situation as “very serious” and ticked off the problems the economy is facing.

“Unemployment is rising, imports are falling, and government income is reduced,” he said. “In areas where there are protests, there is no economic activity — so people aren’t paying tax. Because they aren’t working, they are not repaying their loans — so the banks are in difficulty. And all this is weakening the economy.”

Merchants interviewed recently on the streets of Damascus report a 40 to 50 percent fall in business as consumers hoard cash and cease spending on all but the most essential items. Tourism has skidded to a halt, representing a loss of $2 billion a month to an economy worth $59 billion last year, Mayalah said.

“The whole system has been shrinking — and very fast,” said Rateb Shallah, a prominent Damascus businessman. “The sanctions are squeezing us, and it is definitely affecting us quite a bit.

To what extent the downturn is due to the sanctions isn’t clear, however.

Until now, only the United States, the European Union, Canada and Japan have imposed sanctions on Syria, with relatively limited measures mostly targeting individuals and financial services. The most serious measure, a European embargo on oil purchases imposed in August, goes into effect only on Tuesday because Italy sought to ensure that its existing contracts were honored.

But the experience of the oil embargo illustrates the broader crisis of confidence confronting Syria. European nations, which account for a vast majority of Syrian oil exports, immediately halted their purchases, even though they were not required to do so for three more months. And oil pumped since then has gone unsold, despite Syria’s boasts that it would easily find other customers. Syria has curtailed its oil production by more than 25 percent, Mayalah said.

In a similar fashion, the restrictions on financial services and individuals have had a detrimental effect even on aspects of the economy that aren’t directly connected, by dissuading investors and companies from doing business with Syria. The Central Bank of Syria has not been sanctioned, but many businesses are refusing to engage with it because they fear falling foul of the U.S. prohibition on trade in services with Syria and jeopardizing their interests elsewhere, Mayalah said.

Foreign investment has slowed to a trickle for the same reasons, he said, even though there are no restrictions.

But investors may be equally deterred by Syria’s shaky political future and the escalating violence. The Local Coordination Committees, an opposition group, reported the deaths of 50 people in violence Monday, 28 of them in the southern province of Daraa, where there were unconfirmed reports of major clashes between the Syrian army and defected soldiers. The official Syrian Arab News Agency said two members of the security forces were killed in Daraa.

A trade embargo would be difficult to enforce. Syria can still count on two key neighbors with which it shares long and porous borders: Lebanon, one of only two countries that voted against the Arab League’s resolutions censuring Syria, and Iraq, which abstained.

Yet even trade with Iraq, which has been seeking to boost business ties with Syria as the region tilts against it, has fallen because of the indirect effect of sanctions, said Syria’s deputy economy minister, Khaled Mahmoud Saloutah. The two trading companies that handle most cross-border trade are based in Europe and have been forced to curtail their transactions, reducing the value of Syria’s exports to Iraq by 10 percent, he said.

“The economy is not going to collapse overnight,” Kamel said. “But it is definitely taking Syria down a risky path.”

The newly sanctioned Syrians — other than military and intelligence people — include 3 young members of the Syrian Electronic Army, Rami makhlouf’s lawyer – actually one of his good friends called me today to explain that he had not taken a case for Makhlouf in four years. Another is the head of Berri clan shabbiha in Aleppo. #13 on the list is the most interesting. He is simply named Maj General Nazih. No last name is given. So any one with the name Nazih will have to think twice about a trip to Athens.

Qatar Presses Decisive Shift in Arab Politics – by Anthony Shadid in NYTimes

The tiny emirate’s intentions remain murky to its neighbors and even allies — some see a Napoleon complex, others an Islamist agenda….

“Do they fill a void? Yes,” said Bassma Koudmani, a Syrian opposition leader who credited the Qataris with a key role in the Arab League’s startling decision Saturday to suspend Syria and isolate a government at the pivot of the region’s relations. “They are filling a space and a role that is not being taken up by other countries.” … American diplomatic cables in 2009, released by WikiLeaks, claim that Qatar has occasionally offered Al Jazeera’s coverage as a bargaining tool. A senior journalist there said while no order was given, the network’s reporting on Syria changed sharply in April.

“We could feel the change in atmosphere,” the journalist said.

Syria: It’s the Economy Stupid
by Armand Hurault, Arab Insurrection Analyst, Transnational Crisis Project

The Syrian economic policies over the past 25 years have underpinned the current uprising. I argue that the economy may well be the Achilles’ heel of Assad’s grip on power…..

Dr Emad Mustafa NBN 11 11 11 02

Syria’s neighbors helping shape its fate LA Times

Syria’s embattled government must face the changing dynamics of the region as old alliances fade and new brokers emerge, most notably Qatar….

عشاء المعارضة السورية مع اللجنة العربية حسم الموقف من نظام الأسد
Ash-Sharq al-Awsat
بسمة قضماني لـ «الشرق الأوسط»: الجامعة استجابت لمطالب المجلس الوطني

How Syrian Authorities can Hurt Ex-pats – (in French)

Maidhc Ó Cathail The ‘Humanitarian’ Road to Damascus: Pro-Israel Groups Outline U.S. Options to Assist Syrian Opposition -mForeign Policy Journal

عاجل : اقالة الأمين القطري المساعد لحزب البعث العربي الاشتراكي محمد سعيد بخيتان
وتنصيب وزير الدفاع السابق حسن تركماني

Arab leaders shouldn’t kill their people?
Posted By Marc Lynch

I am an Alawi from Antioch. I have many relatives in the alawite communities of Turkey including those in Mersin, Tarsus, Iskenderun (Alexandretta), Arsuz and Samandag, many of whom I do not know personally. I also visited Syria and am told I have relatives in Latakia, Homs, Damascus, and Aleppo. I am responding to Ms. Kahf and Mr. Landis’ claims regarding Alawite tribes. The truth is as far as I know, there is no such a thing as an Alawite tribe. This is just simply a reflection of modernization, educational attainment, and the prevalence of an urban lifestyle which weakened the traditional intra-communal links. I am about 50 yrs of age and never heard of “tribes”. Even close family relationships are non-existent. I have many relatives that I do not know and could not recognize even if I saw them on the street. I live in the USA and some of my relatives are scattered in Europe including Norway, France, Holland, Germany, Sweden, and the Middle East including Saudi Arabia, and Egypt. So much for the “tribes”!

Human Rights Watch accuses Syrian government of “crimes against humanity”- The human-rights group, Human Rights Watch, released a 63-page report accusing the Syriangovernment of “crimesagainst humanity.” The report reflects the accounts of 110 victims andwitnesses who claim Syrian forces killed at least 587 civilians since the startof the uprisings in March. It also references the tortureof political prisoners and unarmed civilians, including the elderly and children.

Turkey deputy: weapons being smuggled to Syria
The National
Thomas Seibert Nov 11, 2011

ISTANBUL // Many firearms from Turkey have entered Syria, and the Turkish government has stopped alleged arms-smuggling activities at a border post between the two countries, a Turkish opposition deputy said yesterday.

“You see many Turkish-made firearms in Syria,” Mehmet Ali Ediboglu, a deputy from the province of Hatay, which borders Syria, said in a telephone interview. “I don’t know how they got into the country.”

A friend Writes: Friday, November 11, 2011

This is the most inept group of people to govern. The article talks about inability of anyone to pinpoint what the population figure is. One group thinks Syria’s population increases by 670,000 a year. Another thinks its 500,000 and a third believes its 440,000. As for unemployment, the government continues to think its 8% (joke?) while some think its 30%. How can you run a country with such variations? Bashar should have stopped everything in 2000 and did one thing. call the international organizations with expertise in this field and get help in finding out population levels and growth rates in every city and district and make sure each household has an income/asset bracket that qualifies it as poor/middle/wealthy. Only then, subsidies can go to who deserves it and policies can be implemented given actual population trends and where. Instead………………………enough to make want to cry http://www.syriasteps.com/?d=127&id=77652&in_main_page=1

Syria stopped paying oil companies
2011-11-11 15:28:06.43 GMT

LONDON, Nov. 11 (UPI) — Though oil production in Syria is ongoing, sources close to the government said Damascus stopped paying supermajors Royal Dutch Shell and Total. Sources familiar with the Syrian energy sector told the Financial Times that major energy companies working in Syria were getting paid by the government until a few weeks ago. Payments slowed and eventually stopped as European governments put more pressure on Damascus for its crackdown on opposition protesters. “Payments have been delayed and some are outstanding,” said one industry insider who spoke to the Financial Times on condition of anonymity. “My sense is the government has no cash.”

Syria Regime’s Likely Collapse Requires U.S. Planning: Analyst
2011-11-10, By Peter S. Green

Nov. 10 (Bloomberg) — U.S. needs to plan for all contingencies, bring about demise of Assad regime, as long-lasting conflict will become bloodier, more sectarian, spread to neighboring countries, Andrew Tabler, fellow at Washington Institute for Near East Policy, says in testimony to Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Six-point plan needed:
* Form Syria contact group for coordinated pressure on Assad
* Peel away Assad supporters, especially Christians, Sunnis
* Aid opposition to develop peaceful strategy of strikes, boycotts
* Push for international human rights monitors to enter Syria
* Prepare for militarization of conflict – no-fly zone, buffer zones to keep protesters safe from Assad military
* Push for UN Security Council action on sanctions,
potential use of force

Comments (527)


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101. Revlon said:

A graphic depiction of physical and verbal abuse of detained young demonstrators by coward, Asad forces:
- Profanity
- Belting, stomping, and sodomising

Jr thugs were doing all of that because the arrested youth were asking for freedom!

AlRaml AlFalasteeni, latakia

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November 16th, 2011, 7:06 am

 

102. Akbar Palace said:

Khalid Tlass said:

Yes, I am a Salafi and that is my religious belief.

Khalid Tlass,

Does being a Salafi mean you are not allowed to have contact with Jews?

Abstaining from “innovative” beliefs and practices

They also point out that Muhammad himself warned against the people of innovation, from befriending, supporting, or taking from them, as he stated:

Whoever innovates or accommodates an innovator then upon him is the curse of Allah, His Angels, and the whole of mankind.[19]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salafi

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November 16th, 2011, 7:08 am

 

103. Revlon said:

Two officers defect and join Martyr Ahmad AlKhalaf Phalange.
Its special task force, in cooperation with counterpart of Martyrs of Freedom Phalange executed an operation against Asad forces convoy on Elmat Soura Road, resulting in destruction of Ber D M armored vehicle and a personnel carrier and the killing of 50 of Asad forces.

Video of the annoncement
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFemkXqWfdU&feature=player_embedded
أوغاريت انشقاق ملازم وملازم اول بدرعا 14 11 2011

Video of the burning vehicles
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B_GV6yIo6Es&feature=player_embeddedكتيبة الشهيد احمد الخلف تدمر بردي ام واليه 14 11 2011

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November 16th, 2011, 7:18 am

 

104. ann said:

Syria releases 1,180 prisoners detained during months-long unrest

2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-11/16/c_131248892.htm

DAMASCUS, Nov. 15 (Xinhua) — The Syrian government released Tuesday a total of 1,180 prisoners arrested during the eight-month- long unrest who didn’t commit homicide crimes, the state-run SANA news agency reported.

Earlier this month, Syria released 553 prisoners on the occasion of the Muslim’s Eid al-Adha holiday.

The private al-Watan newspaper said Tuesday that Syrian authorities released on Monday hundreds of Syrian prisoners who were arrested during the unrest in the country.

Activists said thousands of people have been detained during the eight-month-old unrest in Syria.

Protesters in Syria demanded the release of those arrested during the crisis which is also part of a peace plan reached between the Syrian government and the Arab League, aiming at bringing an end to the Syrian political crisis.

Meanwhile, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human rights said a total of 34 soldiers were killed in an ambush in the southern province of Daraa by armed men believed to be army defectors.

Al-Watan said Tuesday that statistics of the National Hospital in the central province of Homs showed that 3,230 civilians and military personnel had been killed or injured by “armed gangs” in the province since the eruption of unrest in the country in mid March.

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November 16th, 2011, 7:22 am

 

105. Revlon said:

Five soldiers, one of them wounded, defect on the day of the AL annoncement of the suspension of Regime membership.

They look distraught and in not so well physical condition, which reflects the new lows that Asad forces have reached!

أوغاريت حمص انشقاق جماعي 14 11 2011

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November 16th, 2011, 7:26 am

 

106. ann said:

Syrians rally in solidarity with embattled president – 2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-11/16/c_131251164.htm

DAMASCUS, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) — Thousands of Syrians thronged public squares in several Syrian provinces on Wednesday to demonstrate solidarity with embattled President Bashar al-Assad.

The rallies were held to mark the 41st anniversary of the ” correctionist movement” led by former President Hafez al-Assad, father of the current president.

They were also meant to denounce a decision by the Arab League (AL) to suspend Syria’s membership in the organization ahead of a meeting of Arab foreign ministers in the Moroccan capital of Rabat that aims to discuss measures for the Syrian crisis.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem initially announced that Syria would take part in the ministerial meeting, but member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council warned that they would not attend the meeting if Syria did.

A source at the Syrian Foreign Ministry said late Tuesday that Syria had decided to boycott the AL meeting in Morocco in protest of some statements by Moroccan officials.

The source, whose remarks were carried by the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA), said that “Syria’s initial decision to participate in the Rabat meeting was taken in compliance with the desire of some sisterly countries, but in light of the statements, of which we have been informed from officials in Morocco, Syria has decided not to attend.”

The source did not disclose the contents of these statements.

Syria has been in unrest for about eight months. Foreign reports said 3,500 Syrians had been killed since the anti- government protests erupted in March, while Syrian government said hundreds of security and army personnel were killed by armed groups backed by a foreign conspiracy with the aim of toppling the Assad government.

The Free Syrian Army, an alleged group of army defectors, reportedly said they had attacked several military sites, including an intelligence facility and some military checkpoints near the capital of Damascus on Tuesday and early Wednesday.

The opposition’s report, however, could not be independently verified with the absence of official reaction.

Meanwhile, al-Watan newspaper said that more than 100 people were kidnapped over the past few days in the al-Zahra neighborhood in the central province of Homs, adding that kidnapping has become a daily occurrence in Homs and has further tensed the situation there.

The paper said seven mutilated bodies were found in the al- Muhajereen area in Homs on Tuesday, adding that two army members were killed and 25 others injured in different attacks in the city.

In another central province of Hama, a law-enforcement agent was killed and eight others wounded in an ambush by armed groups in Kafr Zeita.

In a related development, SANA said the Syrian authorities seized a large number of advanced communication devices from some armed groups in several areas in the country.

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November 16th, 2011, 7:29 am

 

107. Revlon said:

AllahuAkbar Phalange announce a series of operations in the eastern region resulting in the destruction of a number of vehicles and killing of their pasengers of Asad forces.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sn0Yq_umCBE&feature=player_embedded
أوغاريت بيان كتيبة الله أكبر حول العمليات الأخيرة في مدينة البوكمال 13 11 2011

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November 16th, 2011, 7:31 am

 

108. ann said:

The Humanitarian War in Syria

The Humanitarian War of the NED and the FIDH in Syria

The National Endowment for Democracy, or NED, is an organization that presents itself as an NGO officially dedicated to “the growth and strengthening of democratic institutions around the world”. But in reality gets 95% of its budget from the United States Congress. It was officially created by the Reagan administration in 1982.

http://laguerrehumanitaire-lefilm.tumblr.com/Syria

The nature of the NED has led many contemporary intellectuals and researchers to describe it as an agency enabling US secret services to overthrow regimes which the State Department dislikes.

This description was supported by the testimony of Oliviet Guilmain, a researcher at the CECE (Centre for the comparative study of elections), during an information session at the French Senate concerning financing of the electoral process. It is known that the NED finances opposition parties in numerous countries and provides special aid to exiles and opponents of regimes targeted by the US State Department.

In Syria, NED’s main organization is the Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies. It is also a partner of the International Human Rights Federation (FIDH) which received $140,000 following a meeting in December 2009 between Carl Gershman and self-styled French human rights organizations. NED’s French contact was François Zimeray, who was former Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner’s Ambassador for Human Rights. Those present during that meeting included the Catholic Committee against Hunger and for Development (CCFD), the African section of AEDH (Act Together for Human Rights), Reporters Without Borders, SOS Racisme and the FIDH.

The International Federation of Human Rights is thus an official partner of the NED, as is also shown by its support for the allegations made by the ex-secretary general of the Libyan Human Rights League – also attached to the FIDH – against the government of Moammer Kadhafi. Those allegations, also supported by the NGO “U.N Watch”, were what set off the diplomatic procedures against the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya.

In Syria, Dr Radwan Ziadeh is the director of the Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies. His highly impressive biography makes clear his engagement in favor of US foreign policy in the Middle East. In particular, he is a member of the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) and director of the Syrian Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Washington. He was present alongside Aly Abuzakuuk – one of the NED representatives in Libya – on the occasion of the Round Table of the Democracy Awards bestowed upon “human rights activists” by the NED.

Moreover, there are strong similarities between the process of Humanitarian War in Libya and what is being elaborated in regard to Syria. For example, U.N. Watch, an organization that coordinates the operations of the NED and the FIDH in Geneva, has already launched several petitions against the regime of Bachar Al-Assad. These raise against Syria the same allegations of massacres as those put forth by the ex-secretary of the Libyan Human Rights league, Sliman Bouchuiguir, at the UN Human Rights Council against Libya.

It is therefore urgent to denounce these procedures, all the more since recent history shows us that these allegations were not verified in the case of Libya, but also that they were not based on any solid proof, contrary to the claims of the International Criminal Court.

Julien Teil

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November 16th, 2011, 7:34 am

 

109. irritated said:

Hurray! We have a Salafi among us who is proud enough to admit it! More salafi will soon come out now that the violent chaos they cherish has started so we can see the real color of this uprising.
Who is next?

Khaled Tlass said:

“I am a Salafi and that is my religious belief. I fully support offensive atrmed actions against loyalist Army, what I said was FSA mst restrain themslevs these 4 days and again go on the offensive later.

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November 16th, 2011, 7:43 am

 

110. irritated said:

# 106. Revlon said:

AllahuAkbar Phalange

Such a secular name! It inspires immediate trust.

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November 16th, 2011, 7:46 am

 

111. ann said:

“”# 106. Revlon said: AllahuAkbar Phalange””

allahuakbar on Syria Comment!! 9/11 phalange!!

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November 16th, 2011, 7:53 am

 

112. irritated said:

#104. Revlon

They look more like they are being bullied, just by the tone of the authoritarian voice of the person asking one of them to show his id cards. Poor kids!

“Five soldiers, one of them wounded, defect on the day of the AL annoncement of the suspension of Regime membership.

They look distraught and in not so well physical condition, which reflects the new lows that Asad forces have reached!”

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November 16th, 2011, 7:54 am

 

113. ann said:

Iranian official stresses all-out support for Syria – 2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-11/16/c_131250931.htm

TEHRAN, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) — Head of Iran’s Human Rights Council Mohammad-Javad Larijani reiterated Tehran’s continued all-out support for Syria, the semi-official Fars news agency reported Wednesday.

“Iran’s future relations with Syria will be as strong as they are now,” Larijani was quoted as saying.

Larijani said Iran is against using military force to interfere in the Syrian affairs.

The main objective of the West’s interference in Syria is not helping Syria but helping Israel, he said, adding that the West should leave the Syrians’ affairs to themselves.

People in the Arab states can resolve their own problems without foreign interference, he was quoted as saying.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Monday that the Arab League (AL) resolution to suspend Syria’s activities in the AL will complicate the situation.

The AL resolution stipulated that activities of the Syrian delegation in the pan-Arab body be suspended since Wednesday.

The AL also called on its members to withdraw their ambassadors in Syria and urged sanctions on Damascus until a peace plan it brokered was implemented.

Syria and the AL reached an agreement on Nov. 2 on a peace plan to end the Syrian crisis, but some reports said Syria was heedless of the agreement and kept cracking down on protestors.

Mehmanparast said Sunday that the vote to suspend Syria’s activities in the AL will not resolve its issue.

Warning against any foreign interference in the region, he said that the AL’s decision was made amid trans-regional efforts to interfere in Syria’s internal affairs.

On Sunday, the rapporteur of Iranian parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission offered Tehran’s full support to Syria as a main pillar of resistance against the U.S. and the “Zionist regime’s” policies in the region, said Fars.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:00 am

 

114. ann said:

Syrian opposition urges Russia to press Assad to leave – 2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/video/2011-11/16/c_131250313.htm

BEIJING, Nov. 16 (Xinhuanet) — Syrian opposition leaders have pressed Moscow to join international calls for the resignation of President Bashar al-Assad.

After meeting Russian Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, the head of the main Syrian National Council opposition group said dialogue would not work without sufficient pressure on Assad.

But instead, Russia says it has called “extremely clearly” on oppositions to resolve the crisis in Syria through the launch of dialogue between the Syrian government and the opposition.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:14 am

 

115. ann said:

U.S. welcomes Turkish hard stance on Syria – 2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-11/16/c_131248935.htm

WASHINGTON, Nov. 15 (Xinhua) — The U.S. on Tuesday welcomed Turkey’s hard stance and decision to impose energy sanctions on Syria, a White House official told reporters, asserting that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has been isolated.

“We very much welcome the strong stance that Turkey has taken and believe it sends a critical message to President Assad that he cannot crack down and oppress the aspirations of his people,” White House deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said while traveling with President Barack Obama on Air Force One.

Turkey may consider terminating sale of electricity to neighboring Syria if tensions continue to escalate over the alleged Syrian crackdown on anti-government protests, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said Tuesday.

Yildiz’s statement came hours after Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the Syrian government for the weekend’s attacks on the Turkish diplomatic missions in Syria following an Arab League (AL) decision to suspend Syria’s membership in the organization.

“Turkey’s comments today further point to the fact that President Assad is isolated,” said Rhodes, urging him to step down.

“We see a growing tide of international opinion against President Assad. We welcome that and have sought to build upon that to apply pressure on the Assad regime,” he said.

The Arab league decided on Saturday to suspend Syria’s membership, to be effective on Wednesday, and then called on its members to withdraw ambassadors and impose sanctions on Damascus until it implements a peace plan brokered by the regional body, under which Syria would have stopped violence and withdrawn military vehicles from cities, released detainees and held dialogue with the opposition.

Washington on Tuesday urged the Arab League, in its meeting scheduled for Wednesday in Morocco, to send a “forceful message” to Syria.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:17 am

 

116. bronco said:

BBC interview with a leading member of the FSA on 16 november

He accuses Turkey of not providing any help and even hampering their operations. He says they are getting no help whatsoever from any country. They don’t want to stay in Turkey, they want to go back to Syria to attack anyone who is siding with the government.
He advises the soldiers of the Syrian army that in order not be targeted, they should defect and join them.
He announced that the attack in Harasta is the FSA’s work while the BBC correspondent in Damas, Assaf Abboud admits that it is not clear yet who was behind this attack that lasted 15 minutes and was only reported by the activists and not by the Syrian press.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:32 am

 

117. ann said:

U.S. urges Arab League for “forceful message” to Assad – 2011-11-16

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/world/2011-11/16/c_131248943.htm

WASHINGTON, Nov. 15 (Xinhua) — The U.S. State Department on Tuesday urged the Arab League to send a forceful message to Syria, insisting that its president Bashar al-Assad must allow for transition and end violence against the civilians.

“We were, as I said yesterday, quite pleased with the very strong and forceful statement that came out over the weekend,” said State Department spokesman Mark Toner, referring to the decision by the Arab League on Saturday to suspend Syria’s membership in this pan-Arab organization.

“We look for the Arab League tomorrow to, again, send a forceful message to Assad that he needs to allow for democratic transition to take place and to end the violence against his people,” he said, ahead of the Arab League meeting scheduled for Wednesday in Morocco.

Besides the suspension of Syria’s membership, the Arab league on Saturday called on its members to withdraw ambassadors and impose sanctions on Damascus until it implements a peace plan brokered by the regional body, under which Syria would have stopped violence and withdrawn military vehicles from cities, released detainees and held dialogue with the opposition.

Toner said that the U.S. embassy in Damascus reported that 42 civilians were killed by Syrian government forces on Monday, which is described by him as an “increased violence” by the Assad regime against the protesters.

He cited the latest sanctions imposed by the European Union against 18 individuals in Syria who are linked to government crackdown and Turkey’s strong statement which threatened to cut electricity to Syria if violence continue to escalate.

“The drumbeat of international pressure is increasing on Assad, ” Toner noted.

He also said that the U.S. is in contact with various Syrian opposition groups, including the Syrian National Council.

“We’ve said before that we don’t believe they’re the sole interlocutors such as the TNC was in Libya, but we do believe that they’re very much a credible interlocutor and representing the Syrian opposition,” he said.

“We certainly do consider the Syrian opposition to be developing to becoming more cohesive as we move forward,” Toner added.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:32 am

 

118. ann said:

‘US insisting on Israeli-friendly Syria’ – Wed Nov 16, 2011

The secretary general of Iran’s High Council for Human Rights insists that the US desires a submissive regime in Syria that makes obeisance to Israel’s presence in the Middle East.

http://presstv.com/detail/210397.html

“The Americans want a government in Syria that kneels down to Israel,” Mohammad-Javad Larijani said on Tuesday in an interview with the Al Jazeera news channel in New York on the sidelines of a meeting of the United Nations General Assembly’s Third Committee.

The US interests, particularly in the neighboring countries of occupied Palestine, do not lie in democracy, he said, adding that Washington prefers authoritative regimes that support the Israeli regime.

The senior Iranian human rights official noted that Iran is not against the popular uprising in Syria; however, he said, the Islamic Republic opposes the onset of civil war as a result of provoking people to resort to violence and sending in armed gangs.

Iran supports any decision made by the Syrian nation, and their choice will never pose a threat to the Islamic Republic, and Tehran hails the recent developments in the Muslim world, he added.

Larijani noted that what happened in Libya cannot be repeated in Syria and warned the US against adopting the same policy against Damascus as it took against the former Libyan regime.

On March 19, NATO unleashed a major air campaign against former Libyan regime forces under a UN mandate namely to “protect the Libyan population.”

Larijani suggested that the best policy to adopt in Syria is to “isolate” individuals who undermine democracy and seek to stir rebellion among the people.

Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March, with demonstrations being held both against and in support of President Bashar al-Assad.

Hundreds of people, including members of the security forces, have been killed in the unrest.

The opposition and Western countries accuse security forces of being behind the killings in Syria over the past months, but the government blames outlaws, saboteurs and armed terrorist groups for the deadly violence, saying that the unrest is being orchestrated from abroad.

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November 16th, 2011, 8:41 am

 

119. zoo said:

Why Syria’s Kurds Will Determine the Fate of the Revolution
November 16, 2011 | 12:00 a

The Kurds don’t have full faith in the SNC, and their concerns stem largely from the council’s seeming dependence on its host nation, Turkey, particularly the ruling Islamist Justice and Development Party headed by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. “I believe Turkey is playing a negative role in the SNC in terms of the Kurdish issue,” Dr. Anwar Yussfu, Britain’s representative of the Kurdish Democratic Party in Syria, told me via email. “Erdogan knows that any constitutional recognition of the Kurds in Syria would mean the same, if not more, should be happening in Turkey next.” Still other Kurds fear that Erdogan’s close relationship to the Muslim Brotherhood means that the SNC is being jerry-rigged to give Syrian Islamists a larger role in the opposition than their on-the-ground constituency merits

Later this month, the Kurdish National Council, which presents itself as an alternative, strictly Kurdish-Syrian opposition group, will convene in Erbil, in the Kurdish Autonomous Region of Iraq, to decide whether it should suspend participation in the SNC. The Syrian opposition can scarcely afford to let this happen.
{…}
http://www.tnr.com/article/politics/97493/syria-kurds-national-council

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November 16th, 2011, 8:41 am

 

120. zoo said:

Why did the Arab League tyrants’ club finally turn on Syria?
By Shashank Joshi

8:53PM GMT 15 Nov 2011
“Moreover, the League’s decisions are being driven by a curious duo: the tiny but wildly wealthy state of Qatar (with a native population smaller than that of Derby) and the regional superpower of Saudi Arabia, keen to pull Syria away from Iran’s orbit.

It is remarkable that so many stagnating police states are coming out against the murder of protesters, even if their outrage is neither sincere nor consistent.
{…}

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/8892093/Why-did-the-Arab-League-tyrants-club-finally-turn-on-Syria.html

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November 16th, 2011, 8:46 am

 

121. Mina said:

Fisk
“Predictions of Syrian leader’s imminent demise are hopelessly optimistic”

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/robert-fisk-assad-will-only-go-if-his-own-tanks-turn-against-him-6262679.html

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November 16th, 2011, 8:48 am

 

122. zoo said:

The Arab League awakening
rami khouri
DOHA— Special to Globe and Mail Update


The Arab League is now making decisions whose consequences are ricocheting around the region and the world like heated corn kernels in a popcorn machine. Consequently, Israel, Iran, Turkey and the U.S. are all responding to Arab initiatives, rather than ordering the Arabs around, as they had done for so many decades. The Arab Awakening continues.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/opinion/the-arab-league-awakening/article2237340/

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November 16th, 2011, 8:50 am

 

123. ann said:

*** MORE SYRIAN OPPOSITION GROUPS ***

Former Syrian regime insiders expect Assad’s fall – Nov 16, 2011

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Former-Syrian-regime-insiders-expect-Assads-fall/articleshow/10756149.cms

PARIS: Two exiled former Syrian regime insiders have emerged to form opposition groups, as belief in Bashar al-Assad’s rule weakens even among members of his Alawite minority and ruling Baath Party.

Experts say the return to the scene of 79-year-old former vice president Abdel Halim Khaddam and of Assad’s uncle 74-year-old Rifaat al-Assad shows that the Syrian elite increasingly expects the strongman to fall.

But they also warn that in joining the fray, these elderly and divisive figures could further fragment and undermine the Syrian opposition.

“They have deep knowledge of the system. They know something has changed and that it’s over. They are trying to position themselves for a place in a future Syria,” said Ziad Majed, of the American University in Paris.

Last week the rival veterans became the latest Syrian figures to launch political movements in Paris, Khaddam the “National Council to Support the Syrian Revolution”, and Rifaat the “National Democratic Council”.

Khaddam demanded international military action in Syria modelled on NATO’s support for this year’s uprising in Libya, while Rifaat wants Arab or world powers to negotiate Assad’s safe replacement “by a member of his family.”

Both men are tainted by the association with the regime of Assad’s late father strongman Hafez al-Assad, and their movements are not seen as truly representative of the eight-month old revolt on the streets of Syria.

But their decision to speak out could mark a turning point, coming as the Arab League votes to suspend Syria, King Abdullah of neighbouring Jordan calls on Assad to stand down and opposition forces step up armed attacks.

“Rifaat al-Assad unsettles the Alawite community in power and Bashar al-Assad’s family,” said Joseph Bahout, a researcher at the Institute of Political Studies in Paris.

But exiled leaders — who once held the highest posts in Hafez al-Assad’s governments — have considerable financial means and networks of contacts in their homeland and Rifaat al-Assad tried to lead a coup in 1983.

“Some Western intelligence agencies calculate that Rifaat could be a vector for an uprising in key military units,” Bahout said.

Khaddam was a long term ally of Hafez al-Assad, serving as his foreign minister, deputy prime minister and vice president, and was a leading figure in the ruling Baath Party, one of the pillars of the regime, until 2005.

Rifaat al-Assad was Hafez’ younger brother and commanded his feared internal security forces. He is accused of overseeing the 1982 massacre of between 10,000 and 25,000 civilians in the town of Hama.

As former regime apparatchiks, both men have little credibility with the larger opposition movements that are attempting to direct the revolution.

“These people are largely discredited in Syria. They are burdened with very weighty pasts. The opposition sees them as millstones around its neck,” said Karim Emile Bitar of the Institute of International and Strategic Relations.

Bahout warned the new parties could create new rifts in the opposition, and the return of Khaddam and Rifaat could be exploited by Assad “who could say that the people who are against him have no credibility.”

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November 16th, 2011, 8:51 am

 

124. Revlon said:

The Higher Council for the Command of the Syrian Revolution (HC-CSR) issued a statement denouncing the Iraqi government blatant participation in regime’s violence against civilians by sending 100 bus-loads of fighters into Syria.

The convoy arrived at the Iraqi-Syrian Boarder escorted with Iraqi armed forces, and entered Syria without passing through security checkpoints.

The HC-CSR regard such act by Iraq as an act of war on the Syrian people, and that it indicates that the Syrian regime hasn invited regional forces ino an internal conflict.

The HC-CSR invites the AL to investigate the issue and act accordingly.

Damascus
16/11/2011

http://www.facebook.com/TheSyrianNationalCouncil#!/photo.php?fbid=184625844959748&set=a.174169679338698.46174.174167209338945&type=1&theater

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

موقف المجلس الأعلى لقيادة الثورة السورية
من دعم النظام من قبل أطراف خارجية

يسـتنكر المجلـس الأعلى لقيادة الثورة السـورية تدخل أطراف عراقية في دعم العنف
و الإجرام على الشـعب السـوري وذلك بإمداد نظـام عصابات الأسـد بمليشـيات بمئة
حافلة تحملها وقد وصلت تلك الحافلات الحدود السورية مصحوبة بقوات عراقية ومن
ثم دخلت تلك المليشيات الى سوريا من غير ان تختم جوازاتهم.

إن المجلـس الأعلى لقيادة الثـورة السـورية يطالب الجامعة العربية بالتحقيق في ذلك
ووضع حد لهذا الإمداد للنظام السوري، ويطالب الحكومة العراقية باالكشف عن هذا
والتوضيح له وأن تضع حدا فوريا لهذا التدخل .
إن السـوريين يعتبرون أن وجود أطراف إقليمية أو غيرها على الأراضي السـورية بقصد
دعم النظام هو حالة حرب على الشـعب السـوري، وهو ما يهدد بمخاطر كبرى لا يمكن
السكوت عليها.
كما أنـه يمثل حالة التدويل والتدخل العسـكري بالشـأن السـوري وهو ما يدفع اليـه
النظام الأسدي .
وينظر المجلـس الأعلى لقيادة الثـورة السـورية إلى هذه الخطوة على أنها انحياز وتفاعل
واضـح وفاضـح مع تصريحات بشـار الأسـد في الدفـع بالمنطقة إلى هاويـة الفوضـى
والاضطراب .

عاشت سوريا حرة أبية

دمشق في 16-11-2011 م

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November 16th, 2011, 8:52 am

 

125. Mina said:

Qatar funding Islamists
Al Jazeera got orders to push for the agenda against Syria last april

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/15/world/middleeast/qatar-presses-decisive-shift-in-arab-politics.html?_r=1&ref=middleeast

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November 16th, 2011, 8:56 am

 

126. Akbar Palace said:

Spann’s NewZ Network

‘US insisting on Israeli-friendly Syria’ – Wed Nov 16, 2011

Ann,

Just FYI (ref. post #117), the Iranian regime does not speak for the US government. If you want US government policy, go to US government websites, not Iranian website or news sources. The US has good relations with many countries that have no diplomatic relations with Israel, and the US has never “insisted” that they DO have diplomatic relations with Israel.

http://www.enotes.com/topic/Foreign_relations_of_Israel#No_recognition_or_diplomatic_relations

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November 16th, 2011, 9:01 am

 

127. irritated said:

#123 Revlon

“The HC-CSR regard such act by Iraq as an act of war on the Syrian people, and that it indicates that the Syrian regime hasn invited regional forces ino an internal conflict.
The HC-CSR invites the AL to investigate the issue and act accordingly.”

Are you serious? Syria is a sovereign country, it has no account to give to anyone. Did anyone objected when Syria received millions of Iraqi refugees when Saudi Arabia was closing its border?

An any case Syria is no longer part of the AL, so the HC-CSR-FSA-SNC-LCC-TMC knows what to do with their request.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:15 am

 

128. Revlon said:

Epi-strategic surprises!!!!
طالب ابراهيم سوريا ستفرض الحظر الجوي على المتوسط

Military strategist and media hero of Syrian regime,Taleb Ibrahim advises Global powers not to even think of intervening in Syria because:
- Syria shall be able to enforse a no-fly zone in the eastern mediterranian. How? He was asked! His answer was: Epi-strategic surprises!!!!
- The little brother of Syria, Hizballah defeated the Israeli army in 2006. So just immagine what the big brother could do!
- Our little brother threatened Israel of sea blockade on the Eastern mediterranian. We shall carry out that threat ourselves!
- Aircraft carriers are like a basket filled with eggs!

This is a sample of the naiivity and misinformation that Regime media spreads around.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:16 am

 

129. zoo said:

طـهران للأتـراك: سندخل الحرب مع سوريـة إذا دخلتـم أراضيهـا

قال الجنرال التركي المتقاعد كميل كسلرين ان اي تحرك عسكري تركي او اطلسي ضد الاسد سيقابله الاخير بتحرك ضد اسرائيل وستسانده ايران عبر الدخول في حرب ضد تركيا والاطلسي والعرب

http://www.tajerna.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9068%3A2011-11-15-08-52-35&catid=44%3A2010-06-22-03-27-21&Itemid=110#.TsJGC6OFP0B.facebook

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November 16th, 2011, 9:19 am

 

130. ann said:

“”125. Akbar Palace said:
Spann’s NewZ Network
‘US insisting on Israeli-friendly Syria’ – Wed Nov 16, 2011″”

Iran did not invade us on 9/11. We were invaded by al qaeda islamist terrorists. Are you making a stand for those islamist terrorists?

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November 16th, 2011, 9:26 am

 

131. irritated said:

#122. ann

“*** MORE SYRIAN OPPOSITION GROUPS ***”

They should all merge into the SLC: The Syrian Leaches Council

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November 16th, 2011, 9:28 am

 

132. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

I very much hope that the Kurds will seize the opportunity, and establish an autonomy in N.E. Syria, and maybe even unite with the Iraqi Kurdistan. They deserve it. They suffered too much of Arab brutality.

The Kurdish people is the real victim of Sykes–Picot. Not the fake “palestinians”.
.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:36 am

 

133. ann said:

Removal of Assad will be devastating for Israel: Gilad

November 16, 2011

http://www.yalibnan.com/2011/11/16/removal-of-assad-will-be-devastating-for-israel-gilad/

The head of Israel’s defense ministry’s diplomatic-security bureau warned of a possible “Islamic empire” if Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad were to be ousted. Amos Gilad said that the removal of the Syrian leader would lead to a “devastating crisis for Israel.”

His comments come as violence in Syria reached new heights this week, with over 70 people being killed in one day alone. The Arab League has suspended Damascus over the violence, which the United Nations estimates to have left over 3,500 people dead, while other rights groups say the number is much higher.

If Assad is ousted by the popular revolt, Gilad said that the Middle East would be facing an Islamic empire led by the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Jordan and Syria.

His fearmongering continued, when he said that wars could arise and Israel would be threatened by “wars with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Syria and Jordan if the Syrian Revolution succeeds in overthrowing al-Assad’s regime.”

He argued that the Brotherhood, one of Egypt’s largest political organizations, with branches in Jordan and Syria, “aims to eliminate Israel and build an Islamic empire controlling” the entire region and destroy Israel.

“Israel feels the dangers coming from Egypt, so it decided to develop relations with Turkey so it will not have to fight Muslims, which would certainly cause the end of Israel,” Gilad added.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:40 am

 

134. zoo said:

#131 Amir in Tel aviv

What about the Kurds in Turkey, same wish?

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November 16th, 2011, 9:41 am

 

135. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

ZOO,

The Kurds in turkey AND in Iran. Same wish. Absolutely.
.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:44 am

 

136. Revlon said:

Additional information is surfacing that shed light on Jr’s plan to decieve the AL and why they insisted on changing clause of “withdrawing the army” to “withdrawing of all armed manifestations”.

The armed forces shall not be withdrawn; they shall stay where they are.
They will switch to anti-riot police uniforms.
They shall be armed with easily concealed Uzi/Uzi-like machine gun, instead of the more visible Klashnikov!!!

Ibrahim Ahmad
‎: Kenanh Al Dandashi انا من سكان مدينة دمشق و كنت مجتمع مع شخص يعمل لدى المخابرات السورية و اثناء الحديث معه اعترف لي بان القيادة العسكرية قامت بانشاء وحدة عسكرية جديدة تابعة لحفظ النظام و هي الان تقوم بنقل عناصر المخابرات الى هذه الوحدة مع مسح كل الادلة التي تثبت ان هؤلاء الاشخاص لهم علاقة بالمخابرات السورية و انهم تابعين لوحدة حفظ النظام حتى قامت بتسليمهم هويات على انهم عناصر شرطة حتى رابع يوم العيد تم نقل حوالي 500 عنصر امن اليها و تجند الشبيحة ضمن هذه الوحدة و يقومون بسحب الاسلحة النارية الكبيرة الحجم مثل الكلاشينكوف و يقومو بتسليمهم اسلحة رشاشة صغيرة الحجم تشبه السلاح الاسرائيلي ( الاوزي )
و لا ادري اذا كان هو نفس السلاح الاسرائيلي و يتم تسليم هذا السلاح بسبب سهولة اخفائه تحت الثياب و عندما تاتي اللجنة العربية المقررة من الجامعة العربية لا يجدون السلاح معهم و انما يجدون الهراوات فقط
يرجى نشر الخبر بطريقتكم و انا متاكد من الخبر مئة بالمئة و ايضا يوجد ضمن مطار المزة العسكري قرب دمشق 3000 معتقل و يضعونهم كدروع بشرية حتى لا يتم قصف المطار في حال الحظر الجوي و التدخل الدولي
و ارجو منكم نشر الخبر قبل وصول الوفود العربية الى سوريا

10 minutes ago

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November 16th, 2011, 9:45 am

 

137. bronco said:

132. ann said:

“Removal of Assad will be devastating for Israel: Gilad”

In the eventual (and probable) success of the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt on the 23th november elections, panic about the safety of Israel will grow and there will be a change in the US policies in Syria.

The switch from open pro-western dictatorships to covert anti-Israel democracies is slowly becoming be reality.

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November 16th, 2011, 9:47 am

 

138. Akbar Palace said:

Spann’s 9-11 Concern Revealed

Iran did not invade us on 9/11. We were invaded by al qaeda islamist terrorists.

Ann,

What does that have to do with posting a false Iranian claim that ‘US insisting on Israeli-friendly Syria’?

BTW, no one has said Iran invaded the US on 9/11. However, the US government has determined that Iran aids and abets Islamic terrorist around the world like Hamas and Hezbollah. In many cases, Iran has been found to directly mastermine terrorists attacks, just like the one that was uncovered last month:

http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/us-iran-tied-terror-plot-washington-dc-disrupted/story?id=14711933

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November 16th, 2011, 9:49 am

 

139. Revlon said:

List of 6 martyrs who fell today in Homs, at the hands of Jr mobsters.

AlFatiha upon their souls
May God bless their families with solace and empower them with patience.

The Syrian Revolution 2011 الثورة السورية ضد بشار الاسد

أسماء شهداء حمص اليوم 16 11 2011
____________________________
الشهيد فيصل الحاج يونس – ابو عامر – حمص -باباعمرو
الشهيد ابراهيم اسماعيل المصطفى – 27 عام – حمص – البياضة
الشهيد مصطفى محمد الترك – 55 عام – حمص – البياضة
الشهيد خالد عبداللطيف سكاف – 30 عام – حمص – البياضة
الشهيد رسول العشموطي – 56 عام – حمص – عشيرة
الشهيد عمر سعيد بكور العمر – 47 عام – حمص – الحولة

3 hours ago

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November 16th, 2011, 9:51 am

 

140. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

I don’t share Amos Gidad’s panic regarding Islamist Syria.

I’m not at all afraid of the Egyptian-Syrian-Jordanian MB, the Tunisian Anahadda and the other Islamist Arab movements.

Let them compete for power, and then let them rule. Let’s judge them by their achievements. This Arab political Islam phenomenon is fast self consuming. Sooner, the Arabs will realize that political Islam is the problem, not the solution.
.

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November 16th, 2011, 10:14 am

 

141. jad said:

Today as yesterday more military men killed than civilians killed by the security and as usual with this new trend they count the defectors as civilians:

8 military men
3 defectors in Edleb
9 civilians?, 7 in Homs 4 of them killed today by snipers (which is a split work between the security forces and the terrorists) and 3 were injured days before, no explanation of who or how or why they were killed.
1 in Daraa it states by the security checkpoint (no explanation of why he was killed)
30 students where detained

المرصد السوري: مقتل 8 عناصر من الأمن و12 مدنيا واعتقال 30 طالبا بسوريا
الأربعاء 16 تشرين الثاني 2011، آخر تحديث 16:40
أفاد المرصد السوري لحقوق الإنسان في بيان له أن “8 من عناصر الأمن السوري قتلوا وأصيب العشرات بجروح، بهجوم شنه منشقون عن الجيش على حاجز أمني وعسكري في بلدة كفرزيتا في محافظة حماة”.
وأضاف في بيان آخر، أن “7 مدنيين قتلوا في محافظة حمص”، مشيرا الى أن “4 منهم سقطوا برصاص حواجز وقناصة في عدة أحياء من المدينة”، لافتا إلى أن “القتلى الـ3 الآخرين قضوا جرّاء جروح أصيبوا بها في وقت سابق”.
وتابع أن “4 أشخاص من محافظة إدلب بينهم 3 منشقين، قتلوا برصاص حاجز أمني وعسكري في بلدة كفرزيتا في وقت سابق اليوم، كما أصيب 13 شخصاً بجروح في بلدة كفرومة إثر إطلاق رصاص من قبل قوات أمنية وعسكرية خلال حملة مداهمات واعتقالات في البلدة تم خلالها اعتقال 26 مواطناً”.
وأشار إلى أن “مواطناً استشهد برصاص حاجز للقوات السورية قرب بلدة الحارة في محافظة درعا، فيما نفذت قوات الأمن حملة إعتقالات في بلدات حسم الجولان ونوى ونمر”.
وأضاف المرصد أن “قوات الأمن السورية إعتقلت أكثر من 30 طالباً من طلاب جامعة القلمون قرب بلدة دير عطية في محافظة ريف دمشق بعد أن نفّذ طلابها إعتصاماً اليوم”.

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November 16th, 2011, 10:21 am

 

142. jad said:

وزير الخارجية الفرنسي يعلن استدعاء سفير بلاده في دمشق

أعلن وزير الخارجية الفرنسي آلان جوبيه أن فرنسا استدعت سفيرها من دمشق بعد تصاعد العنف هناك، فضلا عن اغلاق البعثات الدبلوماسية والثقافية.

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November 16th, 2011, 10:24 am

 

143. jad said:

Iran denied the news of meeting with the opposition:

بيان من سفارة الجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية بدمشق

فيما يتعلق بالاخبار المنشورة حول اتصالات الجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية ببعض جهات المعارضة السورية ، صرح الملحق الإعلامي في السفارة بما يلي :

(( إن الاتصال بالمعارضة السورية غير مدرج على جدول أعمال الجمهورية الإسلامية الإيرانية . و في الوقت نفسه إذا تقرر أن يكون مثل هذا الاتصال ، فإن ذلك سيتم بالتنسيق الكامل و المسبق مع السلطات الرسمية السورية )) .

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November 16th, 2011, 10:30 am

 

144. Uzair8 said:

Al Arabiya opinion piece:

“The West wages jihad but forbids us from doing so”

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

How can the West wage jihad but prohibit us Muslims from doing so?
Here I am talking about the fact that the West has produced nuclear missiles yet prevents us from doing so; occupies our lands whilst protecting its own territory, and colonizes our seas and oceans whilst defending its own seas and oceans. Its factories produce rockets, bombs, missiles, frigates, rocket-launchers and aircraft carriers, whilst our factories only produce bubble-gum and Pepsi. The West warns us against acts of aggression and acquiring weapons, whilst it launches attacks and stockpiles arms day and night.

This is because the West is intelligent and knows that power is the source of all stature and grandeur. Allah the Almighty said: “Prepare against them what force you can”. The world respects no one but the strong. As for diplomacy, romanticism, and political sentimentality, this is mere superficial talk to distract and deceive foes, because war is an act of deception.

Read more:

http://english.alarabiya.net/views/2011/11/16/177451.html

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November 16th, 2011, 10:44 am

 

145. jad said:

Really! after all the lies in the media this little news won’t make any difference…unless it’s intentional:

رويترز تعتذر: أوغلوا لم يقل إن سوريا ستدفع ثمناً باهظاً

“رويترز” عن أوغلو: القيادة السورية سوف تدفع ثمنا باهظا لاعمال القمع
نقلت وكالة “رويترز” عن وزير الخارجية التركي أحمد داوود أوغلو إعلانه أن “القيادة السورية سوف تدفع ثمنا باهظا لعدم وقف أعمال العنف”.
ورأى أوغلو خلال اجتماع لوزراء الخارجية العرب في الرباط ان “القيادة السورية أخفقت في الوفاء بما التزمت به لإنهاء العنف ضد المحتجين المناهضين للحكومة”، معتبرا أن “النظام السوري لم يحترم الالتزامات التي قطعها على نفسه بعد قرار الثاني من تشرين الثاني”، مشيرا الى “خطة لجامعة الدول العربية لإنهاء العنف في سوريا”.

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November 16th, 2011, 10:45 am

 

146. jad said:

جورج غالاوي : مكيدة لسورية واضحة كوضوح سماء قطر

ريو دي جانيرو، بالطبع ، هو المكان الذي نتجه اليه لنهائيات كأس العالم المقبلة (حسنا, ربما ليس نحن، ولكنكم تفهمون ما أقصد) قبل ان تذهب تالياً الى قطر حيث الحرارة تصل 120 درجة، والتي اشترت البطولة مغلفة في ورقة بنية.

قطر، في الواقع ، تمكنت من شراء كل شيء، في حين يستمر ديكتاتورهم، بما في ذلك، على ما يبدو، جامعة الدول العربية ، التي… وافقت على الطلب القطري بتعليق عضوية سوريا نهاية الاسبوع يتبع ذلك عقوبات عليها.

ليس عليك أن تحب النظام السوري لتشتم رائحة الوشاية هنا.

ليس ثمة أي أحد من ملوك جامعة الدول العربية الذي علق عضوية سوريا لديه قائد منتخب، و جميعهم فعلياً ينتهك حقوق الإنسان. إن أيا منهم، في مواجهة تمرد ثورية مسلحة في بلدانهم، سيقوم بسحق الثوار (والفرق الوحيد هو أنهم سيستخدمون بنادق بيعت لهم من قبلنا).

ان عبارة ابريق شاي يهزأ من سخان الماء المشحور** لا يمكن أن تصف هذه المهزلة.

ان جامعة الدول العربية تشابه قليلا دوري الدرجة الثانية الاسكتلندي, مثيرة للشفقة. عندما يُذبَح الفلسطينيين في غزة ، لم يتمكنوا من الاتفاق على عقد اجتماع. من اجلهم

عندما غادر رئيس الوزراء التركي اردوغان المنصة في دافوس بعد إدانة الرئيس الإسرائيلي بيريز بأنه “قاتل الأطفال”، وقفت زعيم جامعة الدول العربية حتى يصفق له ، ثم جلس مرة أخرى لمواصلة العرض.

نظرا لاستحالة الحصول على موافقة الامم المتحدة لشن هجوم على سوريا او ايران، فما يحصل الان واضح كسماء قطر .

تسليح وتمويل مجموعة من الثوار وحملهم على بدء الانتفاضة. عندها فالدولة سترد بقسوة, وعندها أيضاً تقوم المعارضة بدعوة الغرب للتدخل. وإذا لم تسمح الأمم المتحدة بذلك، فإن جيرانها الحكام المستبدين الفاسدين سيفعلونها من أجل ورقة التوت.

انها قنابل بعيدة عنا مرة أخرى، أناس. لا يمكننا أن نحفظ متقاعدينا دافئين شتاءاً. ولكننا بكل تأكيد يمكننا اشعال النار لشعوب بلدان أخرى.

Syria plot is clear as Qatar sky
By George Galloway

Rio, of course, is where we’re headed for the next World Cup (well maybe not us, but you know what I mean) before the tourney heads for the 120-degree hole of Qatar, which bought the championships wrapped up in brown paper.

Qatar, in fact, is buying everything, while their dictatorship lasts, including, it seems, the Arab League, which agreed to their demand for the suspension of Syria at the weekend to be followed this week by sanctions.

You don’t have to like the Syrian regime to smell a rat here.

Not one of the Arab League potentates who suspended Syria has an elected leader, virtually all have ghastly human rights records. Every one of them, faced with an armed revolutionary insurrection in their own countries, would be gunning down the revolutionaries (the only difference being that they would be using guns sold to them by us).

The pot calling the kettle black doesn’t describe this farce.

The Arab League is a bit like the Scottish second division – pathetic. When the Palestinians were being slaughtered in Gaza, they couldn’t agree to have a meeting about it.

When the Turkish prime minister Erdogan walked off the platform at Davos after denouncing Israeli president Peres as a “child-killer”, the Arab League leader stood up to applaud him, then sat down again to continue the show.

Given the impossibility of obtaining UN approval for an attack on Syria or Iran, it’s clear as the Qatar sky what’s going on.

Arm and finance a group of revolutionaries and get them to start an uprising. When the state cracks down, get the opposition to call for western intervention. If the UN won’t authorise it, the corrupt dictators in the neighbourhood will do for a fig leaf.

It’s bombs away again, folks. We can’t keep our pensioners warm in the winter. But we can sure set fire to other people’s countries.

http://blogs.dailyrecord.co.uk/georgegalloway/2011/11/syria-plot-is-clear-as-qatar-sky.html

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November 16th, 2011, 10:58 am

 

147. mjabali said:

Events on the ground are depicting a GRIM future: a regional war on the horizon because there are not enough cool heads that does not like violence.

Also, day after day it looks like this is a Sunni vs Shia/Alawis fight and it will bring the whole area to HELL and of course the MINORITIES are the ones to lose AGAIN.

Where the hell is the Global stance that will stop this madness and tell these idiots that we live in the 12st C. and that we need LAW, Human Rights and liberty…

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November 16th, 2011, 11:06 am

 

148. newfolder said:

see how Bashar’s dogs beat the head of Kafr Nibol municipality

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November 16th, 2011, 11:39 am

 

149. Majed97 said:

The AL’s recent action against Syria has already exposed it for what it is, a Western tool to control the damage resulting from the Arab Spring. The AL’s mission now is to put an end to any hope of true spring in the Middle East. The west is attempting to turn the Arab Spring into an opportunity to restructure their control of the region by reshuffling their agents, and liquidating their agitators. I think this will backfire, as the Arab streets are slowly wising up to what’s happening and will soon rebel against the AL itself. I wouldn’t be surprise at all to see large demonstrations across the major Arab cities, as soon as today, against the AL’s action against Syria…

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November 16th, 2011, 11:45 am

 

150. majedkhaldoun said:

Revlon
Thanks for the link in comment # 127

Taleb Ibrahim remind me of M.Saeed Al Sahhaf ,information minister of Saddam

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November 16th, 2011, 11:46 am

 

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