Problems for Syrians in Egypt; News from Kurdish North; Looting & Oil; Round-up

by Matthew Barber

Thanks to Aymenn al-Tamimi for tweeting this photo

Thanks to Aymenn al-Tamimi for tweeting this photo

The scale of this propaganda piece is impressive: An ISIS billboard in Raqqa promoting shari’a law. The yellow text at the top says “The state’s civil law is contrary to the religion of Allah,” followed by a verse from the Qur’an (3:83 “Do they, then, seek a religion other than Allah’s, while to Him submits whoever there is in the heavens and the earth, willingly or unwillingly, and to Him they will be brought back?”), and finally signed “Your brothers at the Raqqa Da’wa Office.”

Changing topics…

In the last post Aron Lund discussed the possibility of the fragmentation of centralized control within the “regime side” (or whatever term we should use to refer to that part of Syria that stands opposite the rebels, but may not entirely be represented by the government/Syrian regime). A simple example of the kind of phenomenon where authority is contested (and therefore weakened) among those under the regime-loyalist umbrella is given in a new article (in Arabic). The gist is as follows:

A member of the National Defense Forces (shabiha) tried to cut the line in front of a bakery where people were waiting to buy bread. An army officer stopped the shabih and yelled at him, whereupon the shabih called for back-up from the “Ba’ath Brigades.” The Ba’ath Brigades arrived, attacked the army officer and his men, and forced them to get down on their knees. The army officer, as well, had already called for back-up, so 5 jeeps arrived (possibly with Air Force Intelligence), and arrested all the shabiha involved. All of this is based on opposition sources and comes following another story of shabiha attacking policemen who were overseeing the distribution of gas canisters. In this case, the shabiha also attacked the officers when they refused to let them cut the line.


Among the Kurds


عكس السير

Following the assassination of Issa Hisso, a Kurdish politician (article in Arabic), Kurdish forces declared “النفير العام” (“general mobilization”—”nafir” refers to a horn blown for warning or before battle) asking all able people to take up arms (article in Arabic). Turkish forces are now in full alert along the border (article in Arabic).

Now in a stellar display of unity and cooperation vis-a-vis the Kurds, the FSA, the ISIS, Ahrar al-Sham, and a host of other groups have apparently together issued a joint statement against the PKK. Thanks to A.N. for providing the following translation of the article from عكس السير

We, the battalions working in the cities of Minbij and Sirin and Shyoukh and Jarablos:

The revolutionary and military council, Liwaa Al Tawhid, Liwad Jond Al Rahman, Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, Ahrar Al Sham, Liwaa Ashab Al yamin, Liwaa Al Yarmouk, Liwaa Ahrar Al Shyoukh, Souqour Al Sham:
After we became certain that the PKK is without a doubt a party belonging to the regime of the tyrant criminal Bashar al-Assad—because they hosted delegations loyal to the regime (Naser Qandil) in order to setup plans to destabilize the the safe areas; and received weapons and ammunition by air to execute these plans and help this regime as did Hizb Allat in Qusair; and they pulled their forces from the mountains of Turkey and Iraq and brought them to north Syria; and lately they stopped wheat trucks from reaching the liberated areas; and denied checkpoint passage to the mujahidin heading to the battle fronts with the regime; and the big displacement campaign that they’re running in their areas; and the random apprehensions on their checkpoints; and their attempts to create a ethnic fitna between Arabs and Kurds who lived together for hundreds of years and who share a strong bonds and family ties and compassion towards each other and they turned it into a hostile relationship with hate and resentment that drains a lot of our time, effort, blood and money; and thus achieving the goals of the broken and tired regime giving him enough time to catch his breath and arrange his cards and survive in front of the large advancement of our blessed revolution—and based on that we decided:
1 – Initiation of a full siege of the city of Ain al-Arab and preparations for any acts of treachery by the collaborator party
2 – Cleansing of the pockets of PKK that are among our ranks
3 – Declaration of the Minbij-Hassakah a military road that should be liberated from all PKK checkpoints
4 – Cessations of all negotiations and political meetings between us and any group that represents the PKK
And Thus we say:
First: We send a message to all the Kurdish groups that have no connection to the regime or the regime collaborator PKK that we see you like a brother sees a brother and shares his happiness and sadness and land and water and air.
Second: Any rebel battalion or inhabitant of the liberated areas that makes an agreement with the PKK is a traitor to Allah, the Prophet, and Muslims, and will be punished by all the battalions.
And finally: Our goal is to pleasure Allah and to ensure a safe life for our people in Syria and to maintain the unity of the Muslim Syrian people and to maintain the progress of our blessed revolution until the fall of the criminal regime.

Kurds could help shift course of war in Syria – The Star Online

The head of Turkey’s main Kurdish party has welcomed contacts between the Ankara government and Syria’s Kurds, saying it could step up pressure on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and help change the course of the civil war,

Turkish intelligence officers met in Istanbul last week with Saleh Muslim, head of Syria’s Democratic Union Party (PYD), a Kurdish group whose militias have been fighting for control of parts of Syria’s north near the Turkish border.

The meeting followed Muslim’s declaration that Kurdish groups would set up an independent council to run Kurdish areas of Syria until the war ends. Ankara fears that kind of autonomy could rekindle separatist sentiment among its own, much larger Kurdish population as it seeks to end a 30-year-old insurgency.

“Saleh Muslim’s visit to Istanbul is a concrete sign that Turkey is moving towards changing a policy that sees Kurds as a menace,” Selahattin Demirtas, head of parliament’s Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), told Reuters in an interview.

“It won’t just affect Turkish-Kurdish relations but also the course of events in Syria by creating pressure on the regime,” he said.

“Kurds can be effective in Syria, and we need to increase support for them. Western countries, including the United States, should establish proper ties with Syria’s Kurds.”


Difficulties for Syrians in Egypt


[I wrote most of this section on Syrians in Egypt over 10 days ago, but wasn’t able to post due to traveling. I believe it’s still relevant.]

Someone sent me a particularly moving image this week. Month after month of viewing bombed homes and beheaded apostates can eventually produce a dull numbness. But something about the tragic character of this image brought tears to my eyes.

man carrying dead child in Syria

It took me back to the feelings many of us experienced when faced with some of those first images to come out of Dera’a, such as one I remember of a man carrying the body of a boy whose head was split apart by a bullet.

The trend of violence from that day until now has only worsened, and as men continue to carry the bodies of young children, the flow of Syrians exiting the country also continues. But the situation for Syrians in the countries where they seek shelter is fraught with other challenges, as has now become the case in Egypt.

I haven’t verified all of their articulations of the new circumstances, but in the last couple days, multiple unrelated Syrian friends who fled Syria for Egypt have contacted me claiming that the Egyptian government is dramatically shifting policy toward the Syrians who have taken refuge there. They feel that there has been a reversal of several policies that were in place to help them. Chiefly, they are saying that the government will not renew their temporary residencies. A tremendous level of uncertainty afflicts them, since they no longer feel welcome in Egypt, yet are faced by the fact that most other countries have closed their doors to immigrating Syrians. Complicating the situation is the fact that without an embassy, those in need of travel documents / passports are no longer able to secure them.

One friend told me today that his wife is about to give birth. He cannot obtain a passport for his child, because former president Morsi closed the Syrian embassy. Egypt will not renew his residency, meaning ought to leave the country. But the Egyptian government will not allow him to travel with a child who has no papers, obviously. They are now caught in a bewildering limbo in which every choice is the wrong choice.

Another friend believes Syrians need to either leave the country or register with the UN as refugees: no third option for residency.

Furthermore, a new wave of anti-Syrian sentiment has begun sweeping through parts of the country. After some Syrians may have participated in pro-Morsi demonstrations, Syrians in Egypt have told me that they are being branded as “pro-Ikhwaan” as a whole, as well as being accused of contributing to prostitution. In amazingly “tribal” style (when every member of the extended unit is judged as carrying the same shared characteristics), suddenly all Syrians as a collective are defined as being aligned a certain way or as engaging in certain activities.

One informed me that though the Syrian dialect was something enjoyed by Egyptians and which he flaunted when he first arrived, he now hides his accent and tries to sound Egyptian.

Egypt is also making it nearly impossible for any additional Syrians to enter the country. A visa is now required, and obtaining it from Syria requires getting cleared by Syrian security… we all know what that means in Syria, and for a government that recently closed its Syrian embassy in order to express its opposition to the current apparatus there, to now force Syrians fleeing the political violence of the Syrian state into the very arms of the abuser it flees—in order to seek permission to leave—is the very height of irony.

Syrians feeling pushed out of Egypt are wondering where exactly they should go; are they expected to return to Syria? A Syrian friend in Egypt, who fled the violence of his native Qabun, sent me this photo of his neighborhood, I assume taken following destruction this week:

Qabun, July 2013

Not exactly an ideal time to go home. This is the very edge of Damascus, not a far-outlying suburb billed as “Damascus.”

Another moving image I encountered recently, this one of a father with his young daughter from Homs:

Father with his young daughter in Homs, Syria

For more of what Homs looks like now, see this from SkyNews: Dramatic Images Of Destruction In Homs. Beyond merely a bad time to go home, for many there will be no home to return to.

Articles have begun appearing discussing the same issues that these Syrians in Egypt have been talking about:

Syrian refugees caught up in Egypt’s turmoil

A thin wall was all that separated Syrian refugee Ahmed Al Hemsi from his 62-year-old father at Cairo International Airport when immigration officers told his father he would not be allowed into Egypt.

“He was crying when he talked to me on the phone,” Al Hemsi, 26, told IRIN. “This was the first time in my life I heard my father crying.”

Al Hemsi’s father, who had just arrived from Beirut, the capital of Lebanon, is one of thousands of Syrians affected by a new set of security measures enacted by Egyptian authorities following the ouster of former president Mohamed Morsi and bloody clashes between Morsi’s supporters and opponents.

Government supporters accuse Syrian refugees of participating in the clashes and taking part in attacks against anti-Morsi demonstrators in several Egyptian cities.

The new security measures include the requirement that Syrian refugees and asylum seekers get entry visas to Egypt from an Egyptian embassy, as well as security approval.

But many Syrians say, given that Egypt severed its diplomatic relations with Syria, getting an entry visa to Egypt from Damascus is impossible, and that the process is difficult at embassies in other countries.

“Our understanding of the new measures is that we are no longer welcome in Egypt,” said Arkan Abulkheir, a Syrian community leader in Cairo. “The fact that some Syrians had committed violations by getting involved in Egypt’s politics does not mean that Egypt should punish all Syrians.”

There are between 250,000 and 300,000 Syrian refugees in Egypt now, according to the Egyptian government.

The conflict in Syria has created the world’s worst refugee crisis since the 1994 Rwandan genocide, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres said this week, noting that more than 6,000 people were fleeing every day.

Nearly 1.8 million refugees from Syria are registered with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and Egypt.

The government’s new tougher line includes tighter security checks for Syrian refugees in Egypt, with the threat of deportation for Syrians who do not have residence permits.

Previously, Syrians were able to get a three-month visa when they entered Egypt for the first time. After that visa expired, the Syrians could then apply for a one-year residence, but this is no longer the case.

A security official told the newspaper Al Watan on 11 July that police have orders to arrest Syrians and check them.

Abulkheir was stopped by a policeman on the street a few days ago. The policeman asked about his passport and his residence permit.

“He told me that he would have sent me back to Syria if my residence permit was not valid,” Abulkheir said. “Thanks are to God, the permit was valid for six more months.”

Syrian refugees say they are afraid to go out lest they be arrested or deported.

Before the change of government and these new security measures, Syrian refugees already faced a variety of challenges, but the new measures are making life even harder.

When they came to Cairo two months ago, Al Hemsi, his mother and his younger brother had to leave their father behind in the Syrian city of Daraa because they did not have enough money to buy him a plane ticket.

He finally travelled to Cairo on 8 July after the family raised US$250 for the flight. Since he was refused to entry to Egypt, he has been living in a mosque in Beirut.

“We do not know how he eats or lives his life,” Al Hemsi said. “He does not have any money. He is also too frail to work.”

School’s out

Another change has come in the education sector. Syrian refugees were previously allowed to enrol their children in state-run schools and universities, and were given equal treatment with Egyptians when it came to fees. This is no longer the case.

Abu Mustafa, a Syrian refugee in his mid-forties, went to a school in 6 October, a neighbourhood southwest of Cairo, a few days ago to enrol his three children for the new academic year, which is expected to start in September. He was told by the headmaster that Syrians are no longer allowed at state-run schools, which have lower fees than private schools.

“He said I should enrol them in a private school,” Abu Mustafa said. “But this is very difficult for me to do.”

To enrol his children in a private school, Abu Mustafa would have to pay a minimum of 7,000 Egyptian pounds (US$958) for each of them. Unemployed and living on charity, this is too much money for him, and for the tens of thousands of other Syrian refugees in the country.

Political tension

The new measures against Syrians coincide with a fierce campaign against them by some of Egypt’s politicians and opinion-makers, who accuse them of harbouring support for the deposed president and of contributing to Egypt’s current turmoil.

An Egyptian politician recently called for the execution of Syrians and Palestinians if they are arrested while taking part in protests or fights on the streets. …

Syrian Refugees in Egypt Swept up in Turmoil – AP

Egyptian officials turn back a planeload of Syrians at Cairo airport. A popular presenter on Egyptian television warns Syrians to steer clear of protests or face the consequences. An Egyptian state school refuses admission to Syrian children.

Once welcomed with open arms in Egypt, many of the tens of thousands of Syrians who took refuge here from the civil war at home have now found themselves targets of hate speech and intimidation. Their dramatic change in fortune is one of the unexpected consequences of the Egyptian military’s ouster of President Mohammed Morsi, whose Islamist-dominated government offered them favorable conditions.

The shift could have a profound impact on the lives of Syrians in Egypt as they currently find themselves in a sort of legal limbo, waiting to see where the political winds will drop them. In what many see as a hint of what lies ahead, Egypt’s new military-backed interim government already has imposed new travel restrictions.

That has spooked many Syrians who fear their current visas won’t be renewed and they could be forced to leave Egypt. Many have invested their savings in businesses or simply cannot return to their war-ravaged cities.

… “Egypt may be going through tumultuous times, but it must not return anyone, including Syrians, to somewhere threatening their life or freedom,” Nadim Houry, the deputy Middle East director for Human Rights Watch, said in a statement last week. “While Egypt is going through a very difficult period, it simply should not strand Syrians this way, especially those who have fled such a devastating conflict at home.

The U.N. says some 70,000 Syrians are registered in Egypt, although officials estimate the actual number may be twice that since many have opted not to register. That would make Egypt home to the fourth-largest community of Syrian refugees after Jordan, Turkey and Lebanon.

Those who came to Egypt received a warm welcome. Morsi’s government supported the rebels’ cause, and kept in place a decades-old open-door policy that allowed Syrians to come and go without prior visas. They were eligible to receive medical care at state hospitals, while their children could enroll in government schools.

Over the past few months, Syrians redefined some parts of Cairo, opening their own restaurants and cafes in areas where many of them settled.

But the warm welcome quickly evaporated after the military toppled Morsi on July 3 after four days of mass protests calling for the Islamist leader’s removal.

Television networks critical of Morsi aired allegations that the Muslim Brotherhood was paying Syrian refugees to take part in pro-Morsi protests. The arrest of at least six Syrians taking part in violent street clashes only fanned the flames. …

The US Commission on International Religious Freedom provides the following factsheet on the “regional refugee catastrophe.” Information specific to each country receiving refugees is provided.

As of July 17, UNHCR reports that more than 1. 7 million Syrians are refugees in neighboring countries. UNHCR predicts that 3.5 million Syrians potentially could become refugees by the end of 2013. This large number is exerting significant pressure on neighboring countries’ economies and stretching their already limited resources and services. Due to these pressures, Iraq, Turkey and Jordan either have closed their borders or limited daily refugee inflows.

Obama halts delivery of F-16s to Egypt amid unrest – Reuters


Thoughtful Observations


A good writer with interesting reflections on the Syria conflict is posting a blog called Notes on Error. Here are some excerpts from a few posts:

On sectarianism in the conflict: Scenes from the religious war, iii

It is an understandable though melancholy truth that in the tragedy of armed conflict, the narrative that seeks to explain events often lags behind the details that determine events. Policy and psychology work together to delay such inferences as seem, in retrospect, to have been unmissable – as anyone who has paid attention to the long eclipse of Syria will know.

… With the torrent of terrible news pouring out of Iraq, we who are watching from afar must now brace ourselves for another round of narrative delay, which seeks to conceal a fearsome fact: Iraq has been definitively captured and thrown into the Syrian maelstrom. Iraq is now also in a state of civil war.

Martin Kobler, the United Nations envoy to Iraq has proclaimed that that the conflicts in Syria and Iraq (and, sotto vocce, Lebanon) are merging into a single engagement.

From Mr. Kobler’s report to the Security Council, from July 16:

I am deeply concerned by the recent events in Iraq. I regret to report that the last four months have been amongst Iraq’s bloodiest in the last five years. Nearly three-thousand men, women, and children have been killed and over seven thousand more injured. The perpetrators of this violence are taking advantage of two leading factors of instability in the country. These include the ongoing political stalemate and the Syrian crisis.

Narrative – that is, policy – will take some time in catching up with these words, and in the days and weeks ahead there will be much to say about this new war. We may content ourselves at the outset with an unnerving observation: Iraq is the fault-line for the Sunni-Shia divide. It has been since Islam’s first civil war in 656, and remains so to this day.

In other words: the war of religion in the Middle East is metastasizing at a rate that should shock the composure of anyone who makes it their business to pay attention to such things. …

The Iraqi plunge:

… Beginning in the “local” context: yesterday, The Islamic State of Al-Qaida of Iraq and the Levant staged spectacular, coordinated attacks on two prisons in Baghdad. It would be difficult to overstate the intricate boldness of these attacks, which were the most advanced operations of Islamic terror in the region since the withdrawal of American troops two years ago and demonstrate the enhanced capabilities from the recent merger – uncertain as all the details may be – of the Al-Qaida franchises in Iraq and Syria.

The attacks began with a series of suicide car bombs that were driven into the outer walls of the prisons, followed by waves of suicide attackers wearing explosive vests who ran through the breaches to destroy the inner fortifications. Individual infiltrations followed hard upon and all the while the facilities were bombarded by rocket fire. It was only after the application of air power from the security forces that the attacks were broken, and by that time 500 Al-Qaida prisoners had been liberated.

It is unwise to take seriously Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki’s claim that the Shi’ite militia of Moqtada al-Sadr was involved (he’s picking his own bones here), but it seems likely that the escapes were husbanded by elements from within the prisons. The central government’s grip on the security situation is tenuous, and requires comment, but Maliki’s vain evasions only aggravate his crisis of credibility.

In any case, this operation, and the consolidation of Sunni extremism between Iraq and Syria that it denotes, is bad news of the first order. But, working in parallel, a hardening within the Shia camp is deepening the overall sensation of impending calamity.

A struggle is underway between the two intellectual centers of Shia political power: Najaf, in Iraq, and Qom, in Iran. It may be simply said (too simply, really) that the character of this difference has to do with the tensions between Arab and Persian Shi’ism. The former, which has strained itself to interpret events in Syria as a political struggle, and which maintains a certain theological distance from such matters, has urged Iraqi Shias to spurn the fight there and not fan the sectarian flames. It is in no small part through efforts of the clerics in Najaf, led by Grand Ayatollah Ali Al-Sistani, that Iraq has remained, for so long, out of the Syrian war.

In Qom, the situation is different. The Islamic Republic of Iran, whose influence in Iraq has steadily increased since the American occupation and the election of a Shia government there, has been issuing quite contrary edicts. Their version of Shi’ism merges the political and theological spheres and, through the counsels of the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the faithful are enjoined to travel to Syria and fight against what they regard as a Sunni insurgency.

In other words, as over the past months we have witnessed the Sunni legions consolidate on one side of the sectarian divide, we are now seeing Shia extremism beginning to clarify on the other. Mesopotamia is where these two forces have historically met, and it seems, more so with each passing day, that the two wings of Shia Islam are preparing a critical conclave in the same location.

The struggle has only begun to bloom, but as with so many other prolonged factors in this war, the center of gravity slides to the extremes, and we must wonder whether the dramatic Sunni attacks of yesterday will further decide the contest in favor of the intervening Shi’ism of Qom, and against the more measured Shi’ism of Najaf.

On the further-reaching consequences that the war will necessarily have for the human community, and regarding the prospect of action in response to it: Homs and Shame:

… The time when we might have intervened just in Syria and helped move things in a salutary direction has passed. What was once a national uprising is now a regional sectarian war, and I’m not sure how one intervenes in that. We’re in uncharted territory, but that is partly, in my view, a consequence of not having engaged earlier.

That the problem has become really complicated does not arrest any of the consequences, one of which is as follows: the eastern third of Syria and the western third of Iraq are now a single entity where the only functioning power is Al-Qaida. In other words, a sort of radical Islamic quasi-state is being born, which is the common enemy of humanity. (Even Assad views this development as an existential crisis.)

Your framing of the essential choice is, I think, correct. We either do nothing and watch the horror, or we intervene and make everything, so to say, bigger (if not quite worse). Intervention would mean escalation, but that’s just the way it is.

It is, despite the esoteric religious elements, a geopolitical event, as Russia, and our allies like Turkey and Jordan, know all too well. As for “winning”, I don’t know what that would look like, but I know two necessary components: Assad and Al-Qaida must be destroyed.

One of the articles referenced in the above blog posts is quite interesting: Syrian conflict increases Shi’ite divisions – Asharq al-Awsat

Senior Shi’ite ayatollahs in Qom, Iran, have issued edicts urging their followers to join the fighting in Syria, while many Iraqi clerics based in Najaf remain opposed to involvement in the fighting.

Shi’ite militia commanders responsible for recruiting fighters in Iraq said the number of volunteers has increased considerably since the issuance of these edicts, despite divisions within the clergy.

While the Iranian government and some Qom-based ayatollahs are enthusiastic about supporting Assad, Shi’ite authorities in Najaf, led by Ayatollah Ali Al-Sistani, have objected to Shi’ite volunteers going to Syria to fight in a war which they see as political, not sectarian.

Despite Sistani’s position, however, some Shi’ite parties and militias in Iraq, which are loyal to the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, have sent their members to fight in Syria. …

Sayyeda Zeinab gets bombed: Shells hit major Shiite shrine near Damascus

Mortar shells struck near a major Shiite shrine outside Damascus on Friday, killing its caretaker in an attack that threatens to further escalate sectarian tensions in Syria’s civil war, the government and activists said.

State-run news agency SANA said shells fired be rebels fighting to topple President Bashar Assad landed “in the vicinity” of the revered Sayida Zeinab shrine, killing Anas Roumani, the shrine’s administrative director. Several people were wounded in the explosion, SANA said.

… In Lebanon, Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah has called it “a duty” to protect the shrine, saying that if Syrian rebels destroyed it, that would ignite a sectarian war with no end

Opinion from NYT: End the conflict by engaging with Iran: To Oust Assad, Pressure Hezbollah – by JONATHAN STEVENSON

SYRIA has put President Obama’s enlightened realism in international affairs to its stiffest test. Direct military intervention could immerse the United States in yet another open-ended Middle East war. Doing nothing would mean failing to live up to America’s humanitarian obligations and harming America’s regional interests.

But the main impediment to a political deal remains President Bashar al-Assad’s brutal intransigence. And there is something America could do to pressure him. The most powerful inducement for Mr. Assad to reach an acceptable compromise would be a loss of support from Hezbollah, the Lebanon-based, Iranian-financed Shiite militant group. In Lebanon, popular anger over Hezbollah’s intervention in Syria is rising, and the United States must exploit this opportunity, even if it means negotiating directly with Iran to rein in its Lebanese proxy.

… The way to Hezbollah’s heart is through Iran. The Obama administration should bite the admittedly hard bullet and start cultivating Iran as a participant in negotiations for a peace deal in Syria. Iran’s newly elected moderate president, Hassan Rowhani, wants better relations with pro-rebel Saudi Arabia. And despite Iran’s insistence that its Syria policy hasn’t changed, Mr. Rowhani is likely to be less obstructionist than his predecessors and could open up space for genuine compromise. America should also be receptive to power-sharing scenarios that preserve a role for Mr. Assad’s fellow Alawites in a new Syrian government.

Washington should also incentivize reluctant anti-Assad forces, whose disunity has lately strengthened Mr. Assad, by indicating that America is prepared to increase arms shipments to moderate rebels in Syria only if they are willing to consolidate and negotiate. Tough diplomacy along these lines could also increase the internal leverage of Iranian officials with doubts about Mr. Assad’s viability while softening Iranian hard-liners.

Some Israelis have argued that the Syrian civil war usefully bogs down both the Assad regime and Hezbollah and bleeds Iran. Though superficially appealing, this rosy view is trumped by the prospect that cross-border violence could destabilize Lebanon, Jordan and even Turkey. Such a spillover could also cause the current Iranian-Saudi proxy war over Syria to escalate into a more direct and dangerous confrontation that might ultimately discourage Iran from making the nuclear compromises that the United States so badly wants. …

Syrian Sunnis fear Assad regime wants to ‘ethnically cleanse’ Alawite heartland – Guardian

Main areas of control in Syria as of 3 June 2013

… Homs, long a place where a Sunni majority lived in co-existence co-existed with minority Christian and Alawite communities, has now been a city of cantonments for almost 18 months: Alawite areas are surrounded by security walls that are off-limits to opposition areas. The countryside to the north and east, where Sunni and Alawite communities live nearby each other, has been volatile for much of the past year, with massacres documented in Sunni communities in Houla, Banias and Hoswaie.

The apparent cleansing is not all one way though. North of Latakia, Alawites have been chased out of their villages near the Turkish border by opposition groups, which in that area are dominated by jihadists. …

Containing the Fire in Syria  – Ryan Crocker

The awful conflict in Syria grinds on, with more than 100,000 dead and no end in sight. The calls to “do something” – anything – become louder: arm the rebels, enforce a no-fly zone, send in the Marines. Before the United States acts, Americans should reflect on the realities in Syria in a historical context. Here are some relevant dates and events.

Syria, February 1982: The Assad regime corners the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood in Hama, the country’s fourth largest city. For the minority Alawite government, an offshoot of Shia Islam, the fundamentalist Sunni Brothers are an existential threat. Assad rings the city with armor and artillery, and methodically destroys its center. The Brotherhood is largely eliminated, along with more than 10,000 Sunni civilians. The regime knew that the day of revenge might come and spent years developing the security, intelligence and military apparatus to deal with it. …

… So this current fight didn’t start in the southern Syrian city of Dara’a in 2011. Nor is it part of the so-called Arab Spring. It began decades before. Lebanese, Palestinians, Iranians, Jordanians, Iraqis and Syrians – Sunnis, Alawis, Christians and Druze – all remember. Americans may not have ever really understood it in the first place. The history helps explain the ferocity of the fight on the part of both the regime and its opponents, and it illustrates why this regime is not like those in Egypt, Tunisia or Libya. It was ready for this war.

… The opposition, in contrast, lacks cohesion and organization. As is often the case in these conflicts, the most radical elements demonstrate the greatest discipline such as Al Qaeda in Syria – Jabhat al-Nusra. It is what makes arming the opposition such a dangerous and uncertain proposition.

… Much has been said about a political settlement. The conditions are simply not present. Neither the opposition nor the regime is ready to deal seriously with each other, and the opposition is too divided in any event to develop a coherent position. Nor will a meeting between regime representatives and opposition elements in exile produce meaningful outcome, even if it could be convened. The influence of the exiles on those actually doing the fighting is approximately zero.

… I was in Lebanon recently, where the outgoing prime minister gloomily predicted a renewed civil war of which there are already signs with clashes between Sunnis and Alawites in the northern city of Tripoli, in the northeast and attacks on Hezbollah-controlled areas in Beirut. If the violence spreads, the Palestinians will join forces with the Lebanese Sunnis against the Shia, and that in turn will radicalize Palestinians in Jordan’s already fragile monarchy. Both countries need our security and economic support, for the refugee influx and their security forces.

This will be a long war. There is little the United States can do to positively influence events in Syria. Our focus must be on preventing further spillover beyond its borders. There may come a point where exhaustion on both sides makes a political solution possible. We are nowhere near that point. And my fear is that at the end of the day, the Assad regime prevails. We must be ready for that too.

Musa is a Research Fellow with the Southwest Initiative for the Study of Middle East Conflicts (SISMEC) and an analyst with He has a MA in philosophy from the University of Arizona.

Musa al-Gharbi: Al-Qaeda’s renaissance – Your Middle East

Far from being rendered irrelevant by the Arab Spring, the organization seems to be on the verge of a major and enduring resurgence

Following the military coup which removed Hosni Mubarak, it was widely reported that al-Qaeda was rendered obsolete by the Arab Spring. Fareed Zakaria, for instance, pronounced:

“The Arab Revolts of 2011 represent a total repudiation of al Qaeda’s founding ideology. For 20 years, al Qaeda has said that the regimes of the Arab World are nasty dictatorships and that the only way to overthrow them is to support al Qaeda and its terrorism. And then, in a few weeks, the people of the Arab World have overturned two despotic governments by means of non-violent demonstrations and they have begun a process of reform and revolution that will alter the basic bargain between the ruler and ruled in the Middle East…”

This sentiment was only amplified in light of the U.S. assassinations of al-Qaeda’s senior leadership: Osama bin Laden, Anwar al-Awlaki, Abu Yaya al-Libi and Said al-Shehri (among others)—personality strikes which continue to this very day despite the growing evidence of blowback.

… Although there were certainly methodological and ideological disparities, the aspirations of al-Qaeda and the Arab Spring protesters were superficially commensurate: al-Qaeda had long been working against Hosni Mubarak, Ben Ali, Bashar al-Asad, and Gaddafi—just as they had previously fought Saddam Hussein. They unambiguously embraced each of these revolutions, and even called for further uprisings in authoritarian states like Saudi Arabia. However, so long as the protests remained peaceful, al-Qaeda was, in a sense, sidelined. Ironically, the Western interventions/escalations in Libya and Syria gave them an “in” and subsequently al-Qaeda has played a decisive and growing role in those theaters.

Contrary to Western assumptions (fueled by media disinformation), the Libyans did not rise up in great numbers to overthrow Gaddhafi, and there were few military and government defections. Accordingly, the colonel continued to advance on Benghazi despite the NATO-imposed no-fly zone. Foreign fighters from AQIM rushed in to compensate for the lack of indigenous resistance—but even then the local population refused to provide the rebels with provisions or support, forcing NATO allies to overstep their mandate in UNSCR 1973 (just as they did in UNSCR 1441), likely in violation of international law.

The al-Qaeda flag flew next to the rebel flag in the opposition capital of Benghazi, while an al-Qaeda detainee released from Guantanamo Bay became one of the more prolific leaders of the rebellion. To this day, al-Qaeda and its affiliates maintain a strong presence in Libya, largely thanks to the lawlessness which continues to prevail over much of the country, and due to the gratitude of the local population.

Ultimately, these groups would deploy the very resources which NATO provided, and the autonomy afforded them in the absence of Gaddhafi, in order carry out an attack on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi, resulting in the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens. AQIM subsequently took advantage of their base in Libya to plan and execute a successful conquest of northern Mali, prompting a French intervention of unspecified length in their former colony. This, in turn, led to an AQIM response attack in Algeria which killed scores of foreign nationals from around the world.

In Libya, al-Qaeda and its affiliates were among the primary beneficiaries of U.S. and allied arms, funding, training, and supplies. We know this, in part, because they have subsequently deployed these assets throughout the Maghreb, but they have also been relied upon in Syria—just as the weapons provided to the rebels in Syria were used in a failed al-Qaeda attack in Jordan; and yet the Obama Administration has decided to openly endorse arming the rebels (under the false-pretext of chemical weapons use by the Syrian government), despite the overwhelming evidence that most of these weapons have ended up in the hands of al-Qaeda affiliated groups.

Al-Qaeda was quick to endorse the Syrian “uprising;” they began by bombing targets in Damascus and quickly stepped up their involvement from there. The late Abu Yaya al-Libi called for a “violent jihad” in Syria without compromise or “illusions of peacefulness” until President al-Asad is overthrown. The al-Qaeda affiliated al-Nusra Front was primarily responsible for the rebel gains in Aleppo, which marked a turning point in the rebellion—they have since become the most effective and influential fighting force in the Syrian theater. Even rebel forces which are not directly affiliated with al-Nusra or the ISI are increasingly adopting al-Qaeda tactics (guerilla warfare, suicide bombings, IED’s, etc.) in order to combat the superior firepower of the Syrian government. …

… It would be hard to imagine a better scenario for al-Qaeda and their ideology: secular tyrannies have been falling throughout the Middle East—replaced by Sunni Islamist-dominated governments with solid ties to minority-blocks of conservative/radical parties, such as the Salafists. And as formerly antagonistic forces are being overthrown, al-Qaeda has been able to exploit the regional instability to set up new bases of operation. The organization is increasing its presence in the Sinai Peninsula, continues to control large swaths of Yemen and Somalia, and enjoys substantial support in Pakistan. …


The Wealth of Syria: Looting and Scandals


The following Bloomberg article cites a report from the website Trafficking Culture (“Researching the global traffic in looted cultural objects”) that provides the following before-and-after satellite images of the ancient city of Apamea, an archeological site in Syria serving as an example of the tremendous looting that has taken place. In the second picture, thousands of holes are visible where looters have dug into soil that archeologists have not yet explored:

Apamea Syria

Apamea before: via Trafficking Culture, via Dr. Ignacio Arce, via Google Earth

Apamea Syria

Apamea after: via Trafficking Culture, via Dr. Ignacio Arce, via Google Earth

Syrian Looters in Bulldozers Seek Treasure Amid Chaos – Bloomberg

When the uprising against Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad began two years ago, satellite images showed the ruins of the ancient Hellenic city of Apamea surrounded by green farmland. A year later, photos reveal a moonscape blighted by hundreds upon hundreds of holes.

Looters in bulldozers armed with automatic weapons are exploiting the mayhem of Syria’s civil war to seize sites including Apamea, founded in 300 B.C. by one of Alexander the Great’s generals, where colonnaded streets stretch for almost 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) along a hilltop.

“It’s tragic, objects from archaeological sites risk being lost without us ever knowing they existed,” said Jonathan Tubb, keeper of the Middle East department at the British Museum. “It can be callous to talk about this in the face of appalling human loss, but Syria’s cultural heritage is of such great importance to our understanding of human history that it’s only right we’re concerned.”

There are more endangered heritage sites in Syria than anywhere else in the world, the United Nations, Educational, Scientifid and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, said this year. The country has more than 10,000 archaeological sites left by the Greeks, Romans, Ottomans and other civilizations.

“We feel bitter and sad — many sites have been destroyed before our eyes,” Mamoun Abdul-Karim, head of Syria’s Directorate-General of Antiquities and Museums, said in an interview from Damascus. “Clandestine excavations are most dangerous because they mean eternal death, while sites damaged by fighting can be restored.”

Baghdad Looting

Abdul-Karim said his department stored artifacts in safe places to prevent a repeat of the pillaging that emptied the National Museum of Iraq of its Mesopotamian relics after the March 2003 war that toppled Saddam Hussein. He said that while antiquities officials have started local initiatives that include watch groups of tribal elders and civilians to protect sites, they’ve been confronted by gangs of heavily armed men and earth-moving equipment.

“Preventing the smuggling of antiquities and clandestine excavations is the responsibility of every Syrian,” he said. “Even if we have political disagreements, let’s not disagree over the country’s heritage.” …

While looters dismember Syria’s treasures from within, the black gold under Syrian soil is eyed from without: West’s main aid group for Syrian rebels collapses into disarray – Telegraph

Even as President Bashar al-Assad has made sweeping advances across parts of his country, the Syrian Support Group (SSG) has been riven by internal divisions and struggled to raise funds.

The group had been considered a potential game-changer whose money-raising abilities would equip the rebels with much-needed modern weapons.

But instead of using a unique US licence to funnel funds to the opposition, the group has spent months pursuing a fruitless dash to make millions of dollars from Syrian oil.

One former staff member has alleged that the leadership had become “obsessed” with landing a jackpot oil deal and lost sight of its core mission to back the rebels.

The head of the SSG in Washington resigned last month after the group failed to gain real traction with US officials and its London operation is under threat of closure after falling foul of the Government.

The Foreign Office has demanded the group repay thousands of pounds from a grant after determining that some of the money was improperly spent.

… The West had hoped the SSG, founded in the US in December 2011, would channel support to these moderate elements within the Syrian uprising and in May last year it was granted a coveted Treasury licence allowing it to skirt American sanctions on the country.

But private donations dried up after the US State Department warned the SSG that its funds could not be used for weapons. Instead according to David Falt, a whistleblower who served as SSG’s European government affairs director, the group turned its efforts from fundraising to pursuing large and controversial oil deals under the leadership of Brian Sayers, a former Nato official.

Mr Falt has revealed internal emails between Mr Sayers and others, containing proposals to raise money by selling rights to Syrian oil output.

“Brian and some others were obsessed with the oil. The idea they could raise hundreds of millions from the sale of the oil came to dominate the work of the SSG to the point no real attention was paid to the nature of the conflict,” said Mr Falt.

… Mazen Asbashi, the president of SSG who is now trying to restructure the organisation, said the group’s board was eventually forced to pull the plug on the oil proposals after becoming uncomfortable with the activities of Mr Sayers.

“There were early preliminary discussions but they were never pursued in any serious way,” Mr Asbashi said. “The oil-related issues are complex and our organisation is focused on facilitating non-lethal support to the Syrian Military Council.”

Members of the board claimed that they ordered Mr Sayers to call off the proposals. “He was way out in front of where we were comfortable,” said one board member who accused Mr Sayers of “freelancing”.

But Mr Sayers said both the board and Gen Selim Idris, the head of the Syrian Military Council (SMC), were supportive of the idea of using oil money to help fund the rebellion. “There was no disagreement on the principles of that issue and the notion that somehow I was overreaching is absolutely false,” he said.


Opposition and Oppositions


Britain randomly decides people shouldn’t play with Nusra: UK Bans Syria’s Al-Qaida-Linked Nusra Front

… The government said Friday that it considered the Nusra Front and Jabhat al-Nusra nothing more than alternative names for al-Qaida, which has long been outlawed. The ban takes effect immediately. …

And just when it’s getting more attractive: Comics Series on Western Muslim Volunteering for Nusra

Jabhat al-Nusra comic book

Syria’s Nusra Front tries to show it’s a different kind of al Qaida – McClatchy

Two al Qaida-linked rebel groups in Syria appear to be distancing themselves from each other in what may be an effort by the Nusra Front, which the United States has branded as an international terrorist organization, to remain relevant amid signs that major portions of the Syrian population are chafing under harsh rule by conservative religious fighters.

A series of incidents in which residents and fighters in rebel-held areas have protested what they say is a heavy-handed approach to a raft of issues have put Nusra and the other group, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, on the political defensive even as the umbrella group of rebels that the West recognizes, the Free Syrian Army, comes under pressure by the United States to reduce the groups’ influence.

“The jihadists are rightly worried that the U.S. will demand action against jihadists as a vetting bottom line. They talk a lot about the FSA being recruited by the CIA to fight them,” said Joshua Landis, an associate professor at University of Oklahoma who’s an expert on Syria.

When the Obama administration agreed last month to supply weaponry to the Free Syrian Army’s Supreme Military Council, it quickly became clear that ensuring that those weapons didn’t go to Nusra or the Islamic State was a major condition of the aid, which nevertheless has been slow to materialize. Adding to the tensions has been the killing by an Islamic State member of a commander from a pro-Free Syrian Army unit in the mountains along the Syrian coast, allegedly in a dispute over a checkpoint.

In an effort to tamp down the perception that the Free Syrian Army was powerless over these al Qaida-linked groups, a commander in the area said the Free Syrian Army had demanded an arrest. The Islamic State’s response was to order the arrest and trial of the suspected shooter.

That hasn’t yet happened. “There has been no reaction from his group,” said Tasmim al Laathiqiyah, a member of the Khalwah Bin al Azwar Battalion, a rebel unit affiliated with the Free Syrian Army.

In another incident, disgruntled civilians in the northern city of Aleppo demonstrated over the weekend to protest Islamic State checkpoints that prohibited them from visiting government-controlled portions of the city.

The issue for Nusra is to not become the target of that bitterness. Nusra was created by veterans of al Qaida in Iraq, the jihadi organization that gained fame during the U.S. occupation of Iraq by opposing the American presence and later battling that country’s Shiite Muslim majority in a bitter sectarian war.

Nusra’s approach in Syria – many of its members are Syrians who fought against the American presence in Iraq – has been shaped by what happened to al Qaida in Iraq, whose harsh policies eventually turned Sunni Muslim tribal leaders against it. Once the tribal leaders rebelled, they joined with the United States to push the group out of Iraq’s largest province, Anbar.

While the United States has said Nusra and al Qaida in Iraq are indistinguishable from each other – the U.S. designation of Nusra as a terrorist organization declared it to be simply an alias for al Qaida in Iraq – some analysts say Nusra has adopted more palatable policies, even as its leader, Abu Mohamed al Jawlani, has pledged allegiance to al Qaida and its leader, Ayman al Zawahiri. …

Frustrated with how the Islamist agenda took over the uprising, defections are no longer a one-way street: Syria: disillusioned rebels drift back to take Assad amnesty – Telegraph

Disillusioned by the Islamist twist that the “revolution” in Syria has taken, exhausted after more than two years of conflict and feeling that they are losing, growing numbers of rebels are signing up to a negotiated amnesty offered by the Assad regime.

At the same time, the families of retreating fighters have begun quietly moving back to government-controlled territory, seen as a safer place to live as the regime continues its intense military push against rebel-held areas.

The move is a sign of the growing confidence of the regime, which has established a so-called “ministry of reconciliation” with the task of easing the way for former opponents to return to the government side.

… “I used to fight for revolution, but now I think we have lost what we were fighting for,” said Mohammed, a moderate Muslim rebel from the northern town of Raqqa who declined to give his last name. “Now extremists control my town. My family has moved back to government side because our town is too unsafe. Assad is terrible, but the alternative is worse.”

The prevalence of extremist Islamist groups in rebel-held areas, particularly in the north, has caused some opposition fighters to “give up” on their cause.

Ziad Abu Jabal comes from one of the villages in Homs province whose residents recently agreed to stop fighting the regime. “When we joined the demonstrations we wanted better rights,” he said. “After seeing the destruction and the power of jihadists, we came to an agreement with the government.”

Mr Haider said that he had attended a ceremony yesterday at which 180 opposition fighters rejoined the government’s police force, from which they had previously defected.

Although it was not possible to verify this claim, when The Daily Telegraph previously visited the reconciliation ministry’s headquarters in Damascus the office was crowded with the family members of rebels fighting in the city’s suburbs who said their men wanted to return.

A ministry negotiator, who gave his name only as Ahmed, was in the process of arranging the defection of a rebel commander and 10 of his men from the Ghouta district.

“It took us three months of negotiation and this is a test,” he said. “If this goes well, the commander says that 50 others will follow.”

He described the steps taken to allow the return of fighters willing to lay down their arms. First, he said, a negotiator must cross the front line for a meeting on rebel-held territory. “We have to hope the rebel commander orders his snipers not to shoot us.”

Would-be defectors were given papers allowing them to pass through Syrian army checkpoints, and then waited in a safe house until the officials could get their names removed from wanted lists held by the more hardline defence ministry and intelligence agencies.

The rebels “did not sign up to be part of extremist Islamist groups that have now gained influence”, he said. “Now they want to come back to a normal life.”

In the days before the regime took the town of Qusayr last month, The Telegraph saw mediators on the Lebanese border work with the Syrian army to secure an amnesty for fighters wanting to surrender.

The phone rang with desperate calls from the parents of the rebels. “These mothers know that this is the last chance for their sons. …

Foreign Fighters Flocking to Syria Stirs Terror Concerns – Bloomberg

The U.S. and European Union are seeing an increasing number of radicalized young Muslims going to Syria to fight, a development that raises the danger that they will return to conduct terrorist attacks at home.

The war is providing both a rallying point and a training ground for radical Islamists from other nations, according to Matthew Olsen, director of the U.S. government’s National Counterterrorism Center. Their numbers are increasing and the radicals, such as those joining the al-Nusra Front, an offshoot of the terrorist group al-Qaeda in Iraq, are now “the most capable fighting force within the opposition” to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, he said.

“Syria has become really the predominant jihadist battlefield in the world,” Olsen said at the Aspen Security Forum in Aspen, Colorado. “We see foreign fighters going from Western Europe and, in a small number of cases, from the United States to Syria to fight for the opposition.” …

An interesting example of foreign fighters in Syria is this video about a British woman and convert to Islam who went to Syria and married a Swedish jihadi with whom she’s now starting a family:


Lots of alleged details of Ahmad Jarba’s background: The Syrian National Coalition’s Saudi Makeover  – al-Akbar

(Photo: AFP – JM Lopez)

Over the past few days, the Baath Party and the opposition Syrian National Coalition have both elected new leaders, although the timing appears to be a coincidence. If anything, the scope of the reshuffle indicates that both parties, for their own reasons, have come to acknowledge that their respective models were no longer working, and required a fundamental adjustment in their policies and top brass.

Interestingly, this process has produced two main losers: namely, the Muslim Brotherhood-led wing in the National Coalition and the “old guard” of the Baath. These two groups have been the historical poles of the conflict in Syria over the past decade; therefore, the fact that they have been cast aside almost simultaneously has left many wondering whether this comes in advance preparation for a dialogue between the new Baath gutted of its old guard, and the National Coalition ridded of the Brotherhood.

An official Syrian source closely involved with the Syrian “crisis cell” led from the presidential palace, provides further background to these developments. He believes that the change in leadership of the Baath Party took place as part of a new comprehensive vision for its organization and role. As for the change at the top of the National Coalition, the source reckons it is the result of having to adapt to the ouster of the Brotherhood-led regime in Egypt, as well as a shift in the opposition’s “spiritual leadership” from Doha to Riyadh. …

Ahmad al-Jarba: Personal History

The source maintains that Ahmad al-Jarba’s trek to the highest post in the Coalition was planned from A to Z in the corridors of Saudi intelligence. The man, the source said, has a big rap sheet kept by Qatari, Saudi, and Syrian security services, for acts involving all three countries, and in the past, the three intelligence agencies had even coordinated operations in his pursuit.

The Syrian source provided particulars involving Jarba that were mentioned in official Syrian security records, as a fugitive wanted for criminal offenses, including fraud, corruption, and even assassination plots that were not carried out. According to the source, records show that Riyadh handed over “the suspect Ahmad al-Jarba” to Damascus in 2008, on charges of drug trafficking, in accordance with an extradition agreement between Saudi and Syrian security services (which was suspended at the beginning of the Syrian crisis). Jarba was tried and sentenced to a prison term at the time.

The records also reveal another entry involving Jarba, which the Qatari security services undoubtedly also have in their records, as the source said: After the coup staged by the outgoing Emir of Qatar Hamad against his father Khalifa al-Thani, the latter’s foreign minister fled to Syria, where he became a vocal supporter for restoring the previous emir. At the time, according to the records, Emir Hamad’s people asked Ahmad al-Jarba to assassinate the exiled Qatari foreign minister in Syria. Al-Jarba even received payment after accepting to carry out the mission, the source claimed.

However, Jarba chose instead to expose the plot to the deposed Emir Khalifa, for which he also received a financial reward. The issue proved to have huge political consequences, prompting the Syrian state security agency to investigate and ultimately detain Jarba for a total of five months on counts of fraud.

According to another entry in the Syrian security records, Jarba approached the Libyan ambassador in Damascus shortly after Muammar Gaddafi declared himself Africa’s “king of kings,” and persuaded the ambassador to use Jarba’s help in sending Syrian tribal delegations to Libya to pledge allegiance to Gaddafi. Jarba had introduced himself to the Libyan leadership as the chief of the Shammar tribe of the Jazirah region in Syria (Upper Mesopotamia).

In 2004, he was looking for ways to gain access to the late Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, as one of the elders of the Shammar clan, which has branches from Syria, Jordan, and Iraq, all the way to Saudi Arabia. Before Jarba dropped off the grid in Syria, he was being pursued by the Syrian authorities for running brothels in Damascus and Hasakah.

The Secret Decisions of the Doha Meeting

Recently, Saudi intelligence, under Bandar’s direct supervision, began touting Jarba as the chief of the Syrian branch of the Shammar tribe, presenting him inside the Coalition as their pointman for arms purchases. It is likely that Bandar bargained with several blocks in the Coalition over instating Jarba as the president of the opposition group in return for delivering game-changing weapons.

The information available to the Syrian security services indicates that Jarba’s appointment came following pressure from Saudi Arabia during the most recent meeting held by the countries backing the Syrian opposition in Doha. Secret agreements were reached, including one between Paris and Riyadh over the purchase and delivery of advanced weapons for the benefit of the opposition. …

During the meeting in Doha, Saudi intelligence endeavored to polish Jarba’s image among the countries backing the Syrian opposition, presenting him as the chief of the Shammar tribe, and claiming that the groups under his command control the Yaarabia border crossing with Iraq. However, the tribe in Syria is actually led by two elders, Shammar Hamidi Dahham al-Hadi, who has close ties with the President of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, Massoud Barzani, and Uday al-Meez al-Madloul.

Concerning the claim that Jarba controls groups in Hasakah and Qamishli, it is common knowledge in Upper Mesopotamia that the man has been banished by not only his tribe, but even his close family. His father had distanced himself from his son ever since he was exposed for running brothels, even though Jarba tried at the time to claim that he was only running a company to help young men and women marry. Meanwhile, his brother Zaid is a regime supporter, while his older brother Nawwaf has shunned politics altogether.

The Ever-Shifting Sponsorship of the Coalition

Since its inception, the National Coalition has been moving from the embraces of one regional sponsor to another, according to the Syrian source. Whenever it settles for a new sponsor, the source said, the Coalition elects a new leader named by the current sponsor. …

… This process continues with the appointment of Bandar’s man, Ahmad al-Jarba, as president of the Syrian National Coalition.

A Wake Up Call for the Syrian Brotherhood – Sami Moubayed

When Ahmad Mouaz al-Khatib was elected president of the Syrian National Alliance in late 2012, red flags were raised at the offices of the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood. The Brothers feared ideological competition from someone who like them, was preaching Sunni Islam. Their niche, after all, was the conservative Sunni Muslim street of Syria, which they supposedly represented and sought to monopolize.

Here was Khatib, a scholar and former preacher at the prestigious Umayyad Mosque, seemingly being parachuted into the job, right from the heart of Damascus. Although politically inexperienced, he came across as selfless, unblemished, and sincere. He came from the midst of domestic suffering within Syria, whereas the Brotherhood operated from exile. Most of its active cadres were second-generation members born and raised outside of Syria. Simply by being himself, Khatib threatened to make them irrelevant, exposing the Brothers as power-hungry politicians blinded by their thundering success in Egypt. Unlike the Brotherhood, Khatib had no ambition of becoming president of Syria. If the pro-regime street motto had been: “It’s either Assad, or we burn the country” the Brotherhood’s unspoken drive seemed also to be, “It’s either us, or we burn the country!” Clearly in Egypt, now ejected from office with little respect or ceremony, they have decided to “burn the country!”

In Syria, the Muslim Brotherhood’s real powerbase today lies strictly in the Idlib countryside, specifically Jabal al-Zawiya, where they still command a sizable community of loyalists. Their influence in the conservative city of Hama, the city to suffer most from their 1982 adventure, had long vanished. Hama today is no longer a “Brotherhood stronghold.” The secular opposition leader Fidaa Hourani, who treated the wounded at her field hospital in early 2011, was more popular in Hama than the entire Brotherhood leadership combined. She was a secular, and not only that, the daughter of Akram al-Hourani, the father of socialism in modern Syria, who had combated the Brotherhood during the golden years of Syrian democracy, back in the ’50s.

Hama notables grumbled when recalling how while their sons were being led to the gallows in 1982, Brotherhood leaders had packed their bags and left to safe exile, leaving the city to sort out its own mess. They blamed the Brotherhood for dragging Syria into an ill-planned confrontation, which led to the killing of anywhere between 15,000-30,000 civilians, without calculating what the regime’s response would be. The Brotherhood knew that popular sentiment in Hama, although anti-regime, was nevertheless not pro-Brotherhood in 2011-2012. They also realized that if the Syrians went to the polls, unlike Egypt, the Brotherhood would never win a landslide victory. …

… The Muslim Brotherhood is now fighting a battle on several fronts: with Egyptian officers in Cairo, with Bashar al-Assad in Damascus, with Mohammad Abbas in Palestine, and with Saudi Arabia in the Arab and Muslim World. This is more than they can chew. If they don’t try to extinguish fires, they will collapse. Both the Egyptian and Syrian Brothers have to put down their guns, sink into self-reflection, study their mistakes, and eventually re-invent themselves after the Egyptian fiasco.

Strategic Intelligence Assessment for Syria (2) – State of Play Part I – Pro-Assad Groups and Moderate Opposition Forces  – Red (team) Analysis – Helene Lavoix

Red team Analysis diagram of militarized actors in Syria

Keeping in mind the complex and fluid character of the situation in Syria we addressed last week, this post and the next will present the current state of play and the various categories of actors fighting in and over Syria, namely the pro-Assad groups, the moderate opposition forces and the Muslim Brotherhood “related” groups, the Islamist groups fighting for an Islamist state in Syria, the groups linked to a global Jihadi Front, and, finally, the Kurds in Syria, without forgetting the external actors. Scenarios for the future will follow from this assessment. The scenarios will then evolve, notably in terms of likelihood, from changes on the battleground and in interactions between all actors. …

Money, guns flowing from Kuwait to Syria’s most radical rebel factions

Syrian rebels have a new source of weapons and cash from inside Kuwait, and their benefactors in the oil-rich state are sending the aid to the most militant and anti-West factions involved in the fight to topple Bashar al-Assad.

The role of Saudi and Qatari governments and individuals in the funding and arming of Islamist fighters in Syria has been well known since the civil war began more than two years ago. But now, guns and money are flowing from private sources and Salafist-controlled NGOs based in Kuwait, and they are going to rebel factions aligned with Al Qaeda.

“We are collecting money to buy all these weapons, so that our brothers will be victorious,” hard-core Sunni Islamist Sheikh Shafi’ Al-Ajami announced on Kuwaiti television last month, listing the black-market prices of weapons, including heat-seeking missiles, anti-aircraft guns and rocket-propelled grenades.

Days later, Al-Ajami addressed a small throng outside the Lebanese Embassy in Kuwait and gleefully described slitting the throat of a Shiite Muslim in Syria.

“We slaughtered him with knives,” Al-Ajami said to shouts of “God is Great.”

Syria’s al-Nusra Front – ruthless, organised and taking control – Guardian

Photograph: Ghaith Abdul-Ahad for the Guardian

The al-Qaida-affiliated commander in charge of the oil company in Shadadi, eastern Syria – a lean, broad-shouldered man who is followed everywhere by a machete-wielding bodyguard – was explaining the appeal of jihadi rule to the people of the newly captured town.

“Go and ask the people in the streets whether there a liberated town or city anywhere in Syria that is ruled as efficiently as this one,” he boasted. “There is electricity, water and bread and security. Inshallah, this will be the nucleus of a new Syrian Islamic caliphate!”

The al-Nusra Front, the principle jihadi rebel group in Syria, defies the cliche of Islamist fighters around the Middle East plotting to establish Islamic caliphates from impoverished mountain hideaways. In north-eastern Syria, al-Nusra finds itself in command of massive silos of wheat, factories, oil and gas fields, fleets of looted government cars and a huge weapons arsenal.

The commander talked about the services al-Nusra is providing to Shadadi’s residents. First, there is food: 225 sacks of wheat, baked into bread and delivered to the people every day through special teams in each neighbourhood. Then there is free electricity and water, which run all day throughout the town. There is also al-Nusra healthcare, provided from a small clinic that treats all comers, regardless of whether they have sworn allegiance to the emirate or not. Finally, there is order and the promise of swift justice, delivered according to sharia law by a handful of newly appointed judges.

“God has chosen us to provide security to the people, and we do it for nothing,” he said. “We have vowed to sacrifice ourselves to serve the people. If we leave, the tribes will start killing each other for the oil and the loot. We had to show force in dealing with the tribes. Even now, one to three people are killed every day because of feuding over the oil. We also protect the silos of wheat. All the silos are under our protection.

“All this wealth,” he said, “is for the Muslims.”

The emir of gas

A few miles from Shadadi, travelling through hills dotted with oil pumps that resemble giant, long-legged birds dipping their beaks into the earth, we came to al-Nusra’s most valuable asset in the region, a gas refinery run by a young commander known to his followers simply as the “emir of gas”.

The emir sat on a green mattress on the floor of his office, conspicuously eschewing the computer and desk in favour of the simple way of the Islamist warrior. He was almost skeletally thin, his handsome face framed by long black hair that wrapped lazily around his ears, giving him the air of a mischievous playboy.

When the rebels first captured the refinery, it was run by a joint committee that represented all the battalions in the area. But the emir decided to kick them out, for their “petty theft”.

“The Free Syrian Army [FSA] have no funding so they steal stupid things,” he said contemptuously. “They steal anything.”

The secret to al-Nusra’s power in the east, he said, was organisation: all their captured loot went to a central committee, which he called the “Muslim treasury”. From there, it was directed to the various battle fronts. …

Al-Qaida elements fighting with rebels in Syria constitute the most serious terrorist threat to Britain, and if they were to get their hands on Syria’s chemical weapons the consequences could be catastrophic, according to British spymasters.

Comrades in Arms – How Libya sends weapons to Syria’s rebels – FP

The former rebel commander, who also heads a Libyan NGO that helps Syrian refugees in Libya, says most of the weapons and aid are donated free of charge by fellow Libyans. But when the cost of transporting the weapons is high and Libyan funds run dry, he added, a Syrian member of the Muslim Brotherhood flies to Benghazi to provide an injection of cash and coordinate the flow of weapons into Syria.

“What we do is this,” explains the organizer. “We ask katibas [rebel units] here in Benghazi to donate weapons and humanitarian stuff for Syria.… People just show up with guns, money, hospital beds, or sugar. So the moment we have enough we rent a ship or plane and get it to Syria via our contacts in Turkey and — less often — in Jordan.”

Libyan rebels have also sent aid to the Syrian opposition by air. Twenty-seven such flights have occurred to date, says the former commander — 23 from Libya to the Turkish city of Gaziantep and four to an airport in Jordan. The planes mostly took off from Benghazi, but also departed from Tripoli and the eastern airport of al-Abraq, close to the town of al-Bayda.

“Often these are rather small planes,” the former commander says. “Either we Libyans pay, or some of our Syrian friends find money and pick up the bill.”

… “We try to distribute it equally among all the groups,” he says, “but there is some rivalry. I have suggested to the Syrians to create one operation room in which all different rebel groups are present. This is also what we did during the Libyan revolution. But until now the Syrians have not followed this example.” …

Tightening Siege by Syrian Rebels Stirs Anger – NYT

Syrian rebels have tightened their siege on government-held districts in the divided city of Aleppo, choking supply lines and depleting staple foods at the onset of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, traditionally a time of festive meals to break the daily fast.

The tactic is controversial enough among supporters and opponents of the rebels that residents of the Bustan al-Qasr neighborhood staged a protest on Tuesday at a rebel checkpoint. Rebels shot in the air to disperse the protests, local activists said.

“This is not a revolution,” a sheik shouted at rebels in a video posted online. “This is injustice.”

The Aleppo food shortage is just one episode in one of many war-torn cities across Syria. But it highlights how some elements of the armed opposition — especially in areas they control — are seen as oppressive even by their friends.

… But now, complaints about the rebels have only accelerated with their use of blockades — long a government tactic to disrupt food supplies.

Anas, a fighter with Liwaa al-Tawheed, one of the most well-organized, well-armed and prominent brigades operating in the northern province of Aleppo, supported the tactic.

“Districts under regime control are considered military areas,” he said Wednesday over Skype. “We don’t want to force civilians to leave, but at the same time we’re afraid they might get hurt during the liberation of the city.”

Aleppo is divided between government- and rebel-held areas — roughly the western and eastern halves. Where a person lives does not necessarily determine allegiance, and people regularly cross the lines for business or to visit family.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based watchdog that tracks the fighting through a network of activists in Syria, reported “intense food shortages” in some government-held areas, “compounded by the skyrocketing prices of whatever supplies can be found.”

Rebels say their immediate aim is to cut off supplies from government troops, but it appears the blockade is also part of a broader strategy aimed at weakening support for the government and pressuring civilians in government-held areas to leave. If the western part of Aleppo, now home to two million Syrians, becomes empty of civilians, a ground assault by rebels would be easier to carry out and more morally defensible, rebels argue.

Abu al-Haytham, a fighter whose unit is among those enforcing the siege, stressed that the Free Syrian Army’s aim was not to punish residents but to block government supplies and prompt civilians to seek refuge elsewhere, opening the way for a ground attack.

“Our siege is not just about tomatoes and cucumbers. We want to storm security buildings, and the presence of civilians is obstructing our movement,” he said in a Skype interview.

But for citizens trying to get by, it is more basic: it is about eating.

Recently, a woman was trying to cross back into the government-controlled part of the city when she was stopped at a rebel checkpoint. Fighters refused to let her cross with the prize she had come for: bags of fruits, vegetables and medicine, hard to find near her home on the other side.

A sheik allied with the rebels tried to mediate, suggesting she come to live on the rebel side. Incredulous, she replied, “Find me a house!” After fielding more pleas, in scenes captured on video and posted online, the sheik lost patience and confronted the fighters, saying the blockade was hurting “the simple people, the common people.”

Eventually, the rebels relented, and opened the crossing to food.

Interesting human story with excellent photos: How War in Syria Turned These Ordinary Engineers Into Deadly Weapons Inventors – Matthieu Atkins – WIRED

“These things are for killing people,” he tells me. “Every time I make a bomb, I feel sorrow.”




An interesting reminder that this conflict isn’t the first in which scores of foreign fighters have shown up: Australians in Aleppo, 1918

U.N. accepts Syrian offer for chemical arms claims talks – Daily Star

The United Nations has accepted the Syrian government’s invitation for a visit by two senior U.N. officials for talks on the purported use of chemical weapons in the country’s bloody civil war, a U.N. spokesman said Wednesday. …

Massive explosion rocks Homs – NOW

Syrian rebels on Thursday reportedly targeted an ammunition depot in a regime-controlled area of Homs, causing a massive explosion captured in a series of dramatic photos and videos.

The activist Syrian Media Center said that “an ammunition warehouse exploded after being targeted by the Free Syrian Army with Grad Missiles in the Wadi al-Thahab neighborhood [of Homs] which is under the control of the Syrian regime.”

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that at least 40 people were killed in the blast, adding that the depot was owned by pro-regime militias. …

Syrians confused by TV show that takes middle road, yet has regime-approval: The revolution in Syrian drama – Diana Moukalled

Shelling, massacres and fighting killed more than 2,000 Syrians during the first two weeks of Ramadan. It’s the same tragedy the Syrians have drowned in since the beginning of the uprising.

But Syrian hardship is no longer an event. It’s not even a number or a photo. Syrians now feel that there is a general detachment and less international concern towards their ordeal.

It’s now once again the season of Ramadan, and with popular TV drama series, Arab audiences are kept busy, giving the Syrians yet another reason to be confused.

The dramas have brought back an interest into Syrian reality. What’s happening in Syria has been reflected in a few drama series.

Some of these series are directly financed by the regime and therefore clearly display its side of the story. Some, however, are financed by the private sector, displaying professional production and acting without taking a side in the conflict. This too serves the regime’s interest.

In the TV series “We will return in a while,” there’s no revolution in Syria. The events in the series are a mere background for characters.

Parts of the script acted out by Durid Lahham, who supports the regime, repeatedly describe what’s happening in Syria as a “crisis.” It also includes a lot of sorrow over what’s happening there and nostalgia and longing for the country to be a much better place.

Some coffee shops in Syrian areas under the control of the regime were prevented from airing the series “Wilada Min al-Khasera” (Birth from the Waist) which is considered the most courageous series in reflecting the Syrian reality.
There’s a lot of confusion too that will only be finalized during the last episodes of the series, although its path has begun to appear with every episode.

It’s true that the series tackles security forces’ and intelligence apparatuses’ suppression, torture, detentions and arbitrariness – actions that the Syrians experienced over the past years in the most hideous of manners – but the series has an official permit from the Syrian authorities and most of those who work in the series publicly support the regime.

A picture of the revolution

Therefore, it’s not strange when the series falls within the circle of demonizing the revolution considering that the regime and its mistakes are the best the Syrians can have.

The truth is, discussions on social networking websites reveal confusion and divisions over this year’s Syrian drama which seems to have taken a different approach from that previously adopted.

But which is worse? A realistic drama which the Syrians are living? Or a realistic drama which they escape to in series? …

Fadel Shaker’s rise and fall (or fall and rise, depending on your values) – Once a ‘King of Romance,’ Now an Angry Militant – NYT – Ben Hubbard

His success was a dream come true for this tough port city on the Mediterranean coast: a poor kid whose honeyed voice and ballads of love and heartbreak rocketed him to wealth and fame far from the gun-ridden neighborhood where he grew up.

Fadel Shaker became a superstar, hailed as “the king of romance,” his songs wooing masses throughout the Arab world. He bought a vast, three-story villa with a swimming pool overlooking the city, cars, a private orchard and a beachfront restaurant where he performed at parties.

Then last year, in a move that has baffled fans and friends alike, he renounced popular music as forbidden by Islam, grew a scruffy beard and took up with a hard-line sheik.

Last month during a deadly turf battle with the Lebanese Army in a Sidon suburb, he denounced his enemies as dogs and pigs and boasted that his group had killed two men. …

From Turkey with love: Another Israeli attack on Syria? – RT

… Just when it began becoming apparent that the US and its allies were facing serious regional setbacks in the Middle East and North Africa, reports began circulating about an explosion in Latakia. Unverified reports, originating from anonymous sources in Israel in early July 2013, began claiming that Tel Aviv had launched an attack against the Syrian port of Latakia that caused a massive explosion. As the rumours began to circulate in the media, it was dubiously claimed that the Israeli attacks were launched against shipments of Russian-made S-300 air defence systems that were in the process of being delivered to Syria by the Kremlin. US officials would enter the picture by deliberately leaking more information about what happened in Latakia by claiming that Israel used its air force to bomb the port there to destroy a military depot filled with Russian-made Yakhont land-to-sea anti-ship missiles.

Then, on July 15, RT’s Paula Slier would report from Tel Aviv that Israel had attacked Latakia by using a Turkish military base. This would upset the Turkish government, which would deny it and say anyone making the claims was involved in an “act of betrayal.” In response to the Russian report, Turkish officials would up the ante by claiming that the Russian anti-ship missiles in the Syrian port were destined for Hezbollah in Lebanon and that the US and Israel had coordinated the attacks by holding meetings in Turkey with the anti-government militias operating inside Syria. Uzi Mahnaimi would complicate the matter by reporting through the British press that the Israeli attacks were launched from a German-built Dolphin from the sea, which essentially vindicated Turkey by refuting the claim that a Turkish base was used by the Israelis. …

No less conspiratorial than the RT article, a piece questioning all of RT’s reliability – thanks to a concerned reader for emailing it in: Russia Today: State-Funded Propaganda Masquerading as Alternative Media

Russia Today (RT), considered a member of the alternative media, receives its funding from the Federal Budget of Russia as allocated by the Federal Agency on Press and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation. This means that RT is state-sponsored television and therefore would be slighted to the propaganda machine of globalist agendas as set forth by the Russian government. …

Turkish soldier may face 25 years in jail for leaking ‘Reyhanlı bombing files’ – Hurriyet Daily

Militants Attacked Aleppo Armenians Transferring Bus: Video – ArmenPress

Assad visits troops in Damascus suburb – al-Arabiya

Bahraini rights group visits Syria war victims – Gulf Daily News; Commission produces statementthanks to readers for sending articles they find important




Syria Weighs Its Tactics as Pillars of Its Economy Continue to Crumble – NYT

Even as the Syrian government makes some gains against the rebels on the battlefield, it is taking a rout on an equally important front: the economy.

Two years of war have quintupled unemployment, reduced the Syrian currency to one-sixth of its prewar value, cost the public sector $15 billion in losses and damage to public buildings, slashed personal savings, and shrunk the economy 35 percent, according to government and United Nations officials.

The pillars of Syria’s economy have crumbled as the war has destroyed factories, disrupted agriculture, vaporized tourism and slashed oil revenues, with America and Europe imposing sanctions and rebels taking over oil fields.

Increasingly isolated in the face of a growing economic crisis that has reduced foreign currency reserves to about $2 billion to $5 billion from $18 billion, a government that long prided itself on its low national debt and relative self-sufficiency has now been forced to rely on new credit lines from its main remaining allies — Iran, Russia and China — to buy food and fuel.

The government has a $1 billion credit line with Iran, and borrows $500 million a month to import oil products delivered on Russian ships, a government consultant, Mudar Barakat, said in a recent interview in Beirut. Some analysts believe the government will need even more aid from those countries to keep paying government workers and a growing roster of security forces.

Now, some officials hope to push through measures to tighten state control of the economy, rolling back some of the modest economic liberalization and support for private business that President Bashar al-Assad introduced early on, in a departure from his party’s socialist roots.

“We’re thinking of going back to the way it was in the 1980s, when the government was buying the main necessities of daily life,” Mr. Barakat said. “We, as a government, must cover the daily needs of the people, no matter how much the cost is, and keep the prices low.”

Syrians Have Become Obsessed With Dollars – WSJ

Syrians are still bitterly divided politically and battles are raging between government forces and rebels across the country. But one thing appears to be uniting people these days: the dollar-Syrian pound exchange rate.

Almost everyone is obsessed with keeping track of the wild swings in the Syrian pound’s value against the U.S. dollar. The frenzy has swept up  salaried workers, housewives, day laborers and cab drivers. Their general inclination is to convert most of what they have into greenbacks as inflation continues to affect most goods and services. …

One Damascus-based university professor says dollar fever has even gripped his handyman, who recently demanded payment in dollars instead of Syrian pounds for his work. …

On Tuesday the government approved new proposed legislation that would criminalize the use of any foreign currency other than the Syrian pound in commercial and retail transactions. …

Some say the Syrian pound’s recent dramatic devaluation was part of a scheme by the government of President Bashar al-Assad aimed at exchanging its foreign currency funds at favorable rates in order to meet the huge commitments it has in Syrian pounds namely civil servant salaries. …

Here is a photo from a Facebook page of people crowding one of many locations where currency is exchanged:

Syrians crowd around an exchange location

Thousands of Syrian police who joined the rebels are on U.S. payroll – World Tribune

The United States has been paying thousands of Syrian police officers who deserted the regime of President Bashar Assad.

Officials said the administration of President Barack Obama has approved tens of millions of dollars to pay the salaries of police officers who joined the rebels. They said the officers were working to maintain order in rebel-controlled territory, mostly in northern Syria.

“There are literally thousands of defected police inside of Syria,” Assistant Secretary of State Rick Barton said. “They are credible in their communities because they’ve defected.”

In an address to the Aspen Security Forum on July 19, Barton, responsible for State Department stabilization operations, did not say how many Syrian police deserters were on the U.S. payroll. He said the officers were receiving about $150 per month, a significant salary in Syria.

The address marked a rare disclosure of direct U.S. aid to Sunni rebels in Syria. Congress has approved more than $50 million for the Syrian opposition, much of which has not been spent.

Barton said the police officers remained in their communities despite their defection from the Assad regime. He said the U.S. stipend was meant to ensure that they stay on the job.

“We’d rather have a trained policeman who is trusted by the community than have to bring in a new crowd or bring in an international group that doesn’t know the place,” Barton said.


Other Essential Content, Right…


Liberals, Communists and Assorted Infidels: The Ultimate Guide to Arab Secularists – Karl reMarks

Secularism is sexy

Everyone agrees that secularists are the real force behind the ‘Arab Spring’, yet we know so little about this obscure of group of people that toils in virtual anonymity. Aside from the occasional foray onto the BBC, CNN, The Guardian and international leadership conferences, that is. But who are these people really? To answer that question, we commissioned an authoritative study that will for the first time shed light on Arab secularists, their different political groups, and what their favourite drinks are.

The Liberals

The liberals are the granddaddies of all Arab secularists. They see themselves as the vanguard in the fight against Islamists, and they often say things like: “this is not my true Islam”, despite not having set foot in a mosque for 17 years. They mostly work for the UN, the World Bank, and western think tanks, but this doesn’t fool Arab leftists who know that this is the perfect cover for the western imperialist conspiracy.

Like their western counterparts, Arab liberals are very flexible about their principles these days. After all, dogma isn’t useful to anyone. They show this open-mindedness by making statements like: “is voting really necessary for democracy?” and “should illiterate people have the right to vote?” But somehow this intellectual courage is often mistaken as an expression of Fascist tendencies.

Arab liberals like to describe themselves as ‘entrepreneurs’, both in the intellectual and business sense. They’re really cool like that. But for some reason they don’t like to advertise the fact that they’re working for the family company which has a monopoly on BMW spare parts in the entire Levant.

Major locations: Liberals describe themselves as ‘based between Vienna and Cairo’, by which they mean they go to Egypt for five days a year to visit Auntie Samiha in Zamalek.

Favourite drinks: Whiskey. Or Pepsi if they’re really devout.

The Libertarians

The libertarians are liberals who also like porn. The good porn with pictures and stuff, not the complicated type in serious novels that liberals and leftists like.

The Communists

It used to be said that “when it rains in Moscow, Arab communists open their umbrellas.” But since the demise of the Soviet Union, Arab communists have been wandering around aimlessly, mostly trying to organise the third annual party conference that will bring new blood in. The second conference was organised 47 years ago.

While waiting for the objective conditions to ripen, Arab communists spend their time calling each other ‘comrade’ and talk about workers’ rights in the abstract. Someone promised to introduce them to some workers and they’re very excited about that.

Major locations: London, Paris, and one street in Beirut.

Favourite drink: cheap vodka.

The Revolutionary Socialists

The revolutionary socialists are to communists what Luke Skywalker is to Darth Vader. Or that’s what they like to believe. Revolutionary socialists are so right-on it’s painful. But they get away with it because they rarely venture outside social media, where they can manage their splinter groups and disagreements in a safe, digital environment.

Revolutionary socialists use swearwords like ‘Stalinist’, ‘Fascist’ and the utterly damning ‘neo-liberal’. That is primarily because most Arabic swearwords carry explicit gender bias and are inherently discriminatory.

Major locations: New York, Barcelona, middle-class neighbourhoods in Cairo, Beirut and Amman.

Favourite drinks: Arak, organic ale.

The Anarchists

Anarchists are revolutionary socialists who still live with their parents and can afford to be more radical.

Major locations: The global collective struggle.

Favourite drinks: They’re not old enough to drink.

The Nasserites:

The Nasserites are the true spirit of democracy in the Arab world. To this day they hold the record for the most democratically correct elections in history, the 1965 elections in Egypt, in which 99.9999% of the population figured the correct answer. This feat of true democratic alignment between people and leadership is yet to be matched anywhere in the world.

The Nasserites believe in Arab unity, dignity and the fight against imperialism. All they ask of the people, whose interests they have at heart, is not to make a fuss about minor details like torture, suspension of the rule of law and economic collapse while they are pursuing those lofty objectives.

The Nasserites like their leaders tough, manly and charismatic, and preferably from a military background. It doesn’t literally say with a hairy chest, but you can read between the lines. But their malicious opponents have somehow misinterpreted this is as a sign of misogyny and an attempt to marginalise women from positions of power.

Major locations: The Glorious Arab Ummah. (Not to be confused with the Islamic Ummah, which is usually in jail when Nasserites are in power.)

Favourite drinks: The humble yoghurt peasants drink. And champagne.

The Baathists

Wankers. No, seriously, that’s the scientific definition.


Due to a tragic shortage of crosses, this rebel brigade has expressed a dire plea that more crosses be supplied to the opposition as soon as possible; Qatar and Saudi Arabia have yet to state a firm commitment regarding the needed aid.

Comments (294)

Ghufran said:

Since September 2011, I have argued that what we might get from this war is a new team of thieves and looters with no respect for minorities and women rights, in a nut shell that is why this so-called revolution has failed. People realized that this is not a good deal, they were poor and oppressed under Assad but have security, now they are asked to stay poor and oppressed AND lose their security.
Nations do not move from military dictatorships to a liberal democracy over night or over a decade but rather do this transition in steps while law and order, as corrupt and brutal security officers are, is maintained. Islamists and their backers here want an Islamist state that fits their sick fantasies, they forgot how Turkey got to where it is today and now they do not want to learn from Egypt and Libya.
يا أمة ضحكت من جهلها الامم

August 1st, 2013, 8:45 pm


Ghufran said:

Here is a piece of statistics on Lebanon while you are eating your Iftar
صياما مقبولا و افطارا شهيا للصاءمين
Lebanon’s estimated debt now is almost $ 60 billion, that is 1.5 times its GDP, there are over 1.2 million Syrians in Lebanon, the vast majority are Sunni Muslims, even if half of those return, a process that can take years, Lebanon will have more than 25% of its population as Syrians and Palestinians, that will have devastating consequences on the country’s fragile political and demographic balance. Lebanon will undoubted be Syrian war number one victim outside Syria. Harirites only care about expanding their voters base, they will push for giving citizenship and voting rights to Syrians to counter hizbullah’s growing influence but they will face stiff resistance from Christians and France and most Lebanese who will see their wages drop, their unemployment rises and start feeling like refugees in their own country, there will be a day when Lebanese emigrate to Syria especially to Homs and coastal areas, some call this the future Lebanese- type state inside Syria.
كل ثوره و انتم بخير

August 1st, 2013, 9:37 pm


ziad said:


Leaked new army manual: US troops are wearing “enemy uniform although Geneva Conventions prohibit this”. It comes as anti-Assad groups admit a “third force” sparked the war, while unexplained snipers triggered the coup in Egypt; Christof Lehmann tells The Truthseeker how the UN is the “instrument for warfare” preparing the ground for America’s next colonies; shocking torture footage of the West’s Arab dictators; and why the Saudis did 9/11.

Seek truth from facts with Big Oil & Their Bankers In The Persian Gulf: Four Horsemen, Eight Families and Their Global Intelligence, Narcotics and Terror Network author Dean Henderson, Dr. Kevin Barrett, author of Questioning the War on Terror, nsnbc investigative reporter Christof Lehmann, Eric Draitser of Boiling Frogs Post, and Saudi intelligence chief Prince Bandar.

August 1st, 2013, 10:17 pm


revenire said:

A funny twist to Western weapons sent to the rebels:

Arms flow inversion in Syria

While Western states sang their refrain of “Bashar must go!” and plugged the overthrow of the Syrian regime as inevitable, various military leaders were selling their stockpiles of weapons to the rebels before fleeing to Europe or the United States.

Before the evident failure of the West, this trend has currently reversed.

Thus, Hezbollah concluded in late June and early July, two major transactions with the leaders of the Free Syrian Army. In particular, the Lebanese Resistance acquired anti tank and Russian-made RPG missiles that the rebels had received from Saudi Arabia. The second transaction was pulled off at a very low price ($ 1 million), before the “rebels” scrammed to the West with their loot.

August 1st, 2013, 10:39 pm


ilya said:

Hell unleashed
Are we witnessing a regional civil war in the Middle East? Can it be identified as a Sunni-Shia conflict? What will replace the old neocolonial order in the region? And, are oil-rich countries playing a positive role in this turmoil? CrossTalking with Grant Smith and Charles Wolf.

August 1st, 2013, 10:48 pm


ziad said:

جهاد المناكحة الطريق .. إلى القدس

أصارحكم بداية ونحن نجدد يوم القدس العالمي أنني لست متشائما من عودة القدس بقدر ما أنا على يقين أن القدس لن يعود وشبابنا يعيش حالة التيه والضياع والتخبط في دينه وعقيدته فبوصلة الشرف انحرفت والمفاهيم تبددت والأولويات تغيرت وفكر المتدينين دُجن أكثر مما سبق لينتج الفتاوى حسب ما يطلبه أولياء الحرب وتجار السلاح لا حسب الشريعة ومصلحة الدين.
يوم القدس العالمي يأتي وشذاذ الآفاق من كل أنحاء العالم يتدفقون لتحرير سوريا ومسجدها الأقصى من أيدي الصهاينة فقد تغيرت جغرافية القدس في مدارس العربان ورسمت خرائطها لتحل محل دمشق في تأصيل مشبوه لضياع الحقوق المغتصبة وتشويه التاريخ أكثر مما هو مشوه للصعود به نحو استراتيجيات العدو الوهمي وسفك الدم والتناحر في كل بلد عربي وإسلامي ولهذا ليس من المبالغة القول إننا نمر بحالة مرضية أشبه بحالة الزهايمر والخرف السياسي والديني بل ويتعداه إلى تخدير شباب وفتيات الأمة بشهوات الجسد والتمرغ في وحل الرذيلة تحت غطاء الدين المسيس من شيوخ القصور والقنوات الفضائية .
قدسنا يا قوم لم يعد أولوية عند كثير من البلدان الإسلامية بل تجاوز تلك المرحلة لأن يكون تهمة وجريرة يعتقل فيها كثير من الشباب المسلم إذا قاموا بنصرته بالمسيرات والشعارات تحت تهمة أذناب إيران والاستجابة لها ولعلمائها وكأن القدس موروث إيراني لا علاقة للعرب والمسلمين به!نعم أيها السادة في الوقت الذي يجرم الشباب الواعي ويعتقل حينما يحتفل بالقدس المغتصب نجد الأبواب مشرعة لكل المخدوعين للقتال في سوريا وتحريرها من أيدي مغتصبيها من السوريين وعملاء إيران وحزب الله وغدا التهافت نحو الجسد والتناكح في مخيمات اللاجئين السوريين وفي سوق النخاسة على الحدود أجل وأعظم من فلسطين بكل تاريخها الديني والإنساني! نعم أحبتي فالحوريات في فكر المتشددين تبدأ معاشرتهن على أرض المخيمات وعلى الحدود وفي ثكنات الإرهاب والأنفاق الأرضية ليعبروا بعدها نحو القدس في إيغال بدائي موحش لانتهاك الحرمات واحتقار الدين والتقليل من شأن الجهاد في الشريعة الذي لم يكن يوما بدافع الجنس ومعانقة النساء بل كان ولايزال غاية شريفة يتسابق إلى نيلها الشرفاء الأحرار والذي لا أجد مكانا له غير فلسطين واسترداد القدس الشريف.

August 1st, 2013, 11:19 pm


Ghufran said:

Jarba goes to Qatar, gets paid and changes his position again:

In an interview with The New York Times on Saturday, Mr. Jarba said he was prepared to attend a proposed peace conference in Geneva with representatives of Mr. Assad and suggested that the government make “positive steps” to show good faith beforehand, like releasing prisoners.
In the Qatar News Agency interview, however, Mr. Jarba rejected the participation of Mr. Assad and members of his government.
“Among the givens of any coming political negotiation is the lack of Bashar and of his clique in the coming political stage,” Mr. Jarba was quoted as saying. “In fact, this man should be punished for all the crimes that he has committed.”

August 1st, 2013, 11:30 pm


Uzair8 said:

So 500 regime loss in Homs?

Once again, can the Sword of Allah* ever be defeated?

* The title of Khalid bin Walid (RA)

August 1st, 2013, 11:59 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

the explosion in Homs look like atomic bomb explosion,but it was not,
You don’t see comments by the silly people about it

August 2nd, 2013, 12:22 am


ziad said:

Residents of villages in Idleb countryside pick up arms to defend themselves against the terrorists

August 2nd, 2013, 12:39 am


Alan said:

‘My son was radicalized, recruited to join jihad in Syria’ – Belgian father
* * *

ABD-Israil-Turkey en Al-Qaeda and Al-Nusra killing Kurdish….

August 2nd, 2013, 2:23 am


habib said:

“All of this is based on opposition sources”

Enough said. Oh, and Assad lives on a Russian warship too.

August 2nd, 2013, 7:40 am


majedkhaldoun said:

Mr. Kerry said
The army in Egypt restored democracy
I wonder if he accepts that in the US, the army in the US will restore democracy in the same way.
It seems that US has standard for US diferent from standard to Arab countries

August 2nd, 2013, 8:17 am


zoo said:

After the Syrian electronic Army, the Bashar Instagram seem to have been an excellent and effective initiative. The proof is that infuriated the USA annoyed that an “embattled” third world country president would so effectively use Stanford University social media outlet to advance its cause. It is just another reminder that Bashar Al Assad is not Qaddafi, Ben Ali or Mobarak.

Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad’s Instagram account ‘repulsive’: US

Read more:

August 2nd, 2013, 8:56 am


zoo said:

The opposition military body is decomposing

Who’s who: the trinity of jihad in Syria

The relationships between the militias fighting the regime in Syria are extremely difficult to untangle. To date there have been no outright military confrontations between the various factions, but the simmering tensions are a portent of things to come.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:00 am


zoo said:

#14 Majed

You are finally waking up to how hypocritical and untrustworthy the USA is for the Arabs.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:02 am


zoo said:

Will the war the Kurds are waving against Al Nusra weaken even further Selim Idriss’s FSA militias?

12 Arab-Islamic jihadists killed in clashes with Syrian Kurds 2.8.2013

Syrian Kurdistan,— Fresh clashes between Kurdish fighters and Arab-Islamic jihadists erupted in the Kurdish province of Hasakeh in western Kurdistan (northern Syria) early on Friday, a monitoring group said.

At least 12 members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) were killed, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which added that 22 Kurdish fighters have been killed over the past few days.

Reports of the latest Kurdish-jihadist violence emerged a day after at least 31 civilians, among them five women and four children, were killed in army shelling and an assault in the northwestern province of Idlib.

Meanwhile, Kurdish activists said there was heavy fighting in villages between Cel Agha and Gerke Lage as radical Islamists shelled Serê Kaniyê (Ras al-Ain).

“There was fierce shelling of Serê Kaniyê at dawn today (Friday),” said Syrian Kurd activist Havidar, who also reported Islamists and Kurds fighting on the edges of the town.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:07 am


apple_mini said:

A new fashion clothes store will open soon at the Sham mall. A sign saying Opening Soon is on the window.

Judging by its deco, the owner puts down at least 100 grands on the shop. There you see the confidence from people who are willing to invest.

There is money waiting to come in to Syria, including foreign investment from China. Some people see opportunity as soon as the situation is headed to better direction.

August 2nd, 2013, 11:48 am


zoo said:

Is the “brilliant” US foreign policy in the region finally starting to boomerang?

US issues worldwide travel alert over al Qaeda threat

The U.S. State Department has announced officials will close down all U.S. embassies across the Middle East on Sunday after Al-Qaeda-related intelligence suggested a threat. NBC’s Andrea Mitchell reports.

The United States on Friday issued a worldwide travel alert to all Americans through Aug. 31 due to an unspecified al-Qaeda threat that led to embassy closures.

“The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the continued potential for terrorist attacks, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa, and possibly occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula,” it said.

“Current information suggests that al-Qaida and affiliated organizations continue to plan terrorist attacks both in the region and beyond, and that they may focus efforts to conduct attacks in the period between now and the end of August. This Travel Alert expires on August 31, 2013.”

The alert was issued after the U.S. said that all American embassies and consulates that normally open on a Sunday would close on Aug. 4 because of a possible al Qaeda-related threat. A senior State Department official warned they could remain shut for an extended period.

At least 18 diplomatic posts were affected by the closure, with most posting details of the shutdowns on their websites.

August 2nd, 2013, 12:19 pm


Uzair8 said:

Assad seems sure of ‘victory.

The Revolution is sure of struggling on.

Nothings changed.

Nothing to see here move along folks.

August 2nd, 2013, 1:48 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

The Kurds in Ras Al Ain ,under Saleh Mussallam leadership are oppurunistic people, they sentence themselves to bad punishment, they deserve it

Instead of helping us they fight us,this is betraying the revolution,

August 2nd, 2013, 2:13 pm


Alan said:

Why not fought the Kurds? They have betrayed the revolution!Come fought the Kurds!!! Are Courage betrayed you? Who wants to fight the Kurds should go ahead!

August 2nd, 2013, 2:22 pm


ilya said:

You are delusional.
Dont throw everyone ion same basket.
They have not betrayed anyone.
Kurds should create their own federal republic ,that’s exactly what they doing, what best for them.
Have a right to self governance and independence they right to seize right moment to do it.Otherwise you will betray them once again as it was done before in past for 100 years.
Kosovo inside Serbia has right to be republic,but Kurds can not have same Rights inside Syria?
I applaud them for standing up to terror threats defending themselves
Free Kurdistan.
i bet Kurdistan will appear on world map before Palestine ever does !!!

August 2nd, 2013, 2:52 pm


Uzair8 said:

Posted on Yalla Souriya over an hour ago:

@THE_47th 53s

[EXCLUSIVE] & BREAKING | trusted source tells me Israel behind yesterday’s attack on underground weapons depot in #Homs. #Syria


August 2nd, 2013, 3:11 pm



“hardly a massacre-hardly a war” sounds like one of teretha makhrouph’s executives.

August 2nd, 2013, 3:46 pm


Badr said:

I Ate Ice Cream with a Member of al Qaeda in Syria

By Hannah Lucinda Smith

As a public relations exercise, I’m not sure what Abu Mahjin hoped to achieve by agreeing to an interview. He said nothing to make me believe that ISIS’s presence in Syria will improve the lives of ordinary people there. If anything, the state that they hope to establish will be even more repressive than that of Bashar al-Assad, and I can’t believe that many Syrians will tolerate their presence in the long term.

August 2nd, 2013, 3:58 pm


zoo said:

As expected the West has been encouraging all armed Syrians to fight against Al Nusra and other Islamists terrorists in first priority. Selim Idriss FSA militias have not responded to the call as they fear they could become the next victims of the Islamists wrath.
The Kurds have responded and have engaged in a ruthless war against the Islamists. By loosing the Islamists fighters who were their most powerful allies, the FSA is bound to collapse. Turkey is in a state of panic as the Kurds in Syria are now threatening Turkey’s integrity

“The situation is very bad, in the coming days we expect there will be big battles, the Kurds in Tal Abyad are fleeing,” said an Arab from Raqqa province in close contact with residents of the border town.

An influential Arab tribal figure said people in the area were preparing for war.

“Everyone is picking up arms to fight against the Kurds. It’s uniting all of the divided [Arab] groups and this has not happened before, the Arabs are as one against the Kurds,” he said.

Well-organised politically, although split into different factions, Syria’s Kurds announced last month their intention to set up an independent council to govern areas of northern Syria with a Kurdish population.

Should the move go ahead it would be a significant step towards autonomy for the Kurds in Syria.

Syrian Arabs living in the mixed Kurd-Arab zones said they believed most Kurds wanted to live in peace but also aspired to an independent Kurdish state, something Arabs and Syrian nationalists could not agree to.

A Kurdish member of the FSA, who has fought in Damascus and Deir Ezzor, said he faced growing criticism from other Kurds for siding with opposition rebels against the Assad regime.

The fighter said an independent Kurdish state would never materialise and that it was, therefore, better to work to form a democratic state.

“The revolution is off track, the situation is getting worse and worse,” he said, referring to fighting between Arabs and Kurds, the opposition’s failure to properly organise and external interference.

“It’s hard to see how this can end well anymore,” he said.

Read more:

August 2nd, 2013, 4:43 pm


Uzair8 said:

Given the size of the Homs explosion, and the further explosions at the ammo dump, the affected area (and the immediately surrounding area) must look like a disaster zone. We can only guess as I don’t think the regime will allow any pictures to come out.

In that regimist area they thought they were relatively safe. They thought they could attack and harass opposition areas from there without much danger of significant retaliation.

This incident, they didn’t expect it did they? Heaven can and will reach you from directions you didn’t expect. The regime authorities and shabeeha (and regimists) of the area must really be rattled by this event.

We can only guess how big a blow this is and how far reaching are its consequences.

August 2nd, 2013, 5:29 pm


Sami said:

Yes, the new clothing store is such an indication of things to come that the owner is actually hiring ten’s of thousands Damascenes who have lost their livelihood because the factory they worked in was barrel bombed, shelled indiscriminately or looted by the heroism cowardice of Jaysh Abu Shahata.

Oh I forgot the suburbs and its inhabitants don’t count as Damascus and anyhow they deserve to be “hardly massacred”, “carpet bombed” and “cleansed” …

But other than that كلشي بخير! Bashar is winning.

August 2nd, 2013, 6:05 pm


ilya said:

Egypt: Evidence points to torture carried out by Morsi supporters
Evidence, including testimonies from survivors, indicates that supporters of deposed President Mohamed Morsi tortured individuals from a rival political camp, said Amnesty International.
Anti-Morsi protesters told Amnesty International how they were captured, beaten, subjected to electric shocks or stabbed by individuals loyal to the former President. Since mass rival rallies began in late June, as of 28 July, eight bodies have arrived at the morgue in Cairo bearing signs of torture. At least five of these were found near areas where pro-Morsi sit-ins were being held.
“Allegations that torture is being carried out by individuals are extremely serious and must be investigated as a matter of urgency,” said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International.

August 2nd, 2013, 7:17 pm


Tara said:

36 HA and Abu Fadl al Abbas brigade fighters returning in body bags during the last 48 hours from Reef Damascus. Nasrallah’s should consider multiple appearances and strong shiaa rhetorics like the one today to pacify their parents.

August 2nd, 2013, 7:26 pm


ilya said:

OH MY! Pakistan has a big pig problem

ISLAMABAD: Every winter, the capital of Pakistan’s Islamic republic is overrun by what is many Muslims’ worst nightmare: herds of screeching wild pigs. (**sigh** God works in strange ways)
Washington Post (H/T Tammi) Motivated by hunger, the reviled animals descend each night from neighboring hills to feed on the garbage bins of Islamabad’s most exclusive addresses — from high-end hotels to the city’s embassies and even the president’s residence. On their way to feeding grounds, pigs cause traffic accidents and send locals hurrying for cover. Some Islamabad residents have reportedly been injured or even killed by belligerent hogs.

Over the years, Islamabad’s Capital Development Authority has attempted to stem the flow of swine through trapping and poisoning, and up until last year it awarded pig-specific hunting licenses. Still, the local porcine population has continued to rise unabated. Now Islamabad officials have all but given up trying to contain the intruders.
Haha not only Pakistan cant defeat its domestic terrorists ,they even surrendered to pigs oh Irony.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:07 pm


zoo said:

With the US approved fall of Morsi, Erdogan’s Turkey continues to loose its cards to become a regional power

Pining for Morsi, in Istanbul

After the collapse of Ankara’s good-neighbor policy — efforts to mend fences from Tehran to Damascus — Morsi’s collapse was the latest blow to Turkey’s ambitions as a regional power. Up until the coup, Erdogan spoke of an impending visit to the Gaza Strip, which would have impressed both his electorate and supporters of the Arab Spring. Now that trip, which requires passing through Egypt’s Rafah Crossing, seems an impossible dream.

I didn’t have the heart to tell my dinner companions this, but the Turkish government’s unqualified condemnation of Morsi’s overthrow stems less from a concern for the Egyptian people than a desire to recast its own troubles at home. It suits Erdogan to play the role of the victim by portraying the recent demonstrations in Turkey as attempts to foment a coup against him; they simply cannot appear as legitimate protests against his abuses of power. Water cannons and pepper spray had to be deployed to control dissent, Erdogan is signaling. Because what happened in Egypt cannot be allowed to happen in Turkey.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:29 pm


zoo said:

UN: Syrian Rebels Suspected of War Crimes

August 02, 2013

United Nations human rights chief Navi Pillay is calling for an independent investigation into war crimes allegedly committed by Syrian rebel fighters.

Pillay said Friday that a U.N. team in Syria found evidence that rebels executed at least 30 people last month in Aleppo. Most of the victims were Syrian soldiers. She said the killings were captured on video, calling the incident “deeply shocking.”

Pillay said those on both sides of the war who break international humanitarian and human rights law need to be held accountable. She said rebel forces should not think they are immune from prosecution.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:41 pm


zoo said:

A recommended place to spend Eid for the die-hard supporters of the opposition: a taste of “freedom and karama”

Aleppo fatwas: Cover up and don’t eat pastry
Residents of “liberated zones” face bans on croissants, make-up

Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat—Residents of “liberated zones” in the city of Aleppo in northern Syria are accustomed to moderate Islamic teachings far from fanaticism and extremism, but recent rulings by new religious courts set up groups associated with opponents of the government have begun to make many uneasy, with rulings seeking to regulate everything from dress to diet.

In one recent example at the start of the holy month of Ramadan, the city’s new consolidated judicial council issued a decision saying that those who “abandon iftar,” the evening fast-breaking meal, would be imprisoned for a full year. They pointed out that decision is derived from the “unified Arab penal code,” originating from Islamic Shari’a law and issued by the Arab League.
…. much more

August 2nd, 2013, 9:45 pm


Ghufran said:

Kerry’s sharp golden finger that poked the MBs in Egypt was a surprise to those who still ” do not get it”. This is a world that only respects power, zionists understood that 120 years ago, Arabs are still catching up. Another valuable lesson that should have been learned by now is that unity is the only antidote to “the game of nations”, I have nothing but pity towards those who still live under the robes of corrupt sheikhs and swim in the frozen water of organized religion.

August 2nd, 2013, 9:46 pm


zoo said:

Lebanon is failing to lure rich Syrian industrialists to invest .

Syrian industrialists put off by costs in Lebanon
August 03, 2013 12:25 AM
By Mohamad El Amin
The Daily Star

Read more:

August 2nd, 2013, 9:51 pm


Ghufran said:

The snake that came back to bite Tunisia:
Tunisian army is launching the most intense campaign in its modern history after Islamist terrorists killed nine soldiers on the borders with Algeria.
Live and learn.
The Islamists in Tunisia will not last long.

August 2nd, 2013, 11:14 pm


ziad said:

Congress to Qatar: stop support of Hamas or we’ll work to “restore democracy” in your country too

August 2nd, 2013, 11:55 pm


ziad said:

George Galloway in Conversation on Syria

George Galloway in conversation with author and journalist Jonathan Steele on western intervention in Syria.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:29 am


Alan said:

The U.S. Military Has Awarded Contracts To Al-Qaeda In Afghanistan

I suppose it just wasn’t enough that our allies, “the rebels” in Syria, have significant Al-Qaeda elements to them. No, we are the USA! USA! Best country ever. Defender of human rights. City on a hill. We must do far more than that. So we did.

This story below from Bloomberg, highlights a 236-page report by the U.S. Army Suspension and Debarment Office, which shows that military contracts have been granted to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. Yep, this is exactly what happens when an empire gets too big, too corrupt, and ends up in the hands of a bunch of sociopaths. From Bloomberg:

Supporters of the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan have been getting U.S. military contracts, and American officials are citing “due process rights” as a reason not to cancel the agreements, according to an independent agency monitoring spending.

“I am deeply troubled that the U.S. military can pursue, attack, and even kill terrorists and their supporters, but that some in the U.S. government believe we cannot prevent these same people from receiving a government contract,” Sopko said.

The 236-page report and Sopko’s summary provide one of the watchdog agency’s most critical appraisals of U.S. performance in helping to build a stable Afghanistan as the Pentagon prepares to withdraw combat troops by the end of next year…..
U.S. Warning That Al Qaeda May Use U.S.-Made Weapons Against U.S. Embassies

So really, what we have here is another vague terrorist threat issued by the U.S. with virtually no details except that the U.S.-armed Al Qaeda may be behind it.

This report is designed to create fear within the American public against those “evil Islamic terrorists” that are running wild through the streets of the Middle East with weapons sold to them by the U.S. military.

Clumsy sarcasm!!!

August 3rd, 2013, 5:10 am


Syrialover said:

Hahahaha. Satire from SANA!

Iranian investment in Syria? There’s plenty under way – here’s what it looks like: (thanks to SYRIAN HAMSTER above for link)

Article: Iran and Syria sign $3.6bn oil deal

Iran has agreed to supply Damascus with $3.6bn in oil in exchange for the right to invest in the country, Syria’s state news agency SANA has said.

“An agreement was signed [on Monday] in Tehran by the Iranian and Syrian central banks, granting Syria a credit line worth $3.6bn,” the agency reported on Tuesday.

The deal stipulates that Syria will pay back the cost of the oil loan “through Iranian investments of various kinds in Syria,” said SANA.

It did not elaborate on what kind of investments Tehran would make.

Iran is the main regional backer of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whose regime has fought for more than 28 months to crush a protest movement that turned into a armed revolt after the military launched a violent crackdown against dissent.

Oil production in Syria has crashed over the course of the country’s war, which the UN says has killed more than 100,000 people.

Previously a small energy exporter, Syria is now forced to import oil and by-products, Sleiman Abbas, Syria’s oil minister said in May.

August 3rd, 2013, 9:10 am


Syrialover said:

To quote: Most pro-Assads(like this one pictured, for example) are either living outside Syria or non-Syrian.

August 3rd, 2013, 9:23 am


zoo said:

Heavy weapons ‘generously’ provided by Qatar and KSA are used to killed Syrian Kurds. When are the USA ‘lethal’ help coming?

Al Qaeda-linked militia attacks Kurdish villages in Aleppo, Syria 3.8.2013
Al Qaeda-linked militia are killing Kurdish civilians in Tal Hasil and Tal Aran in Aleppo province, said local sources on Saturday.
SERÊ KANIYÊ, Syrian Kurdistan,— Al Qaeda-linked militia attacked Kurdish civilians in Tal Hasil and Tal Aran in Aleppo province, said local sources Saturday morning.

The attacks begun some four days ago. The attacks have been carried out by military tanks, mortars and heavy machine guns. Hawar News Agency (ANHA) released a footage depicting the attacks on Kurdish civilians.

According to Firat News Agency (ANF) and information provided by Kurdish journalist Barzan Iso, attacks orchestrated by military tanks, mortars and heavy machine guns left more than 50 people dead and 350 Kurds held as hostages.

August 3rd, 2013, 9:57 am


zoo said:

I wonder why the parents are ‘devastated’. The door to paradise has opened for the two ‘deeply religious’ sunni swedish jihadists.

Islamist Lebanese-Swedish brothers suffer jihadist death
Published: 3 Aug 2013 15:28

Two Islamist Lebanese-Swedish brothers who left their Scandinavian home for Lebanon, have died fighting alongside Syrian rebels, their cousin and a local cleric said on Saturday.

Hassan and Moatasem Deeb “were killed Friday in a rebel assault on the Abu

Their deaths have devastated their parents, who had already lost a third son Rabih to sectarian fighting in Tripoli last year.

Sheikh Mohammed said Moatasem, 18, blew himself up in a suicide car bomb at
the checkpoint, and Hassan, 21, died in the assault that followed.

The youths apparently did not die in vain, as the assault on the checkpoint
succeeded, said the cleric.

Cousin Jihad Deeb said that, although the youths had long been “deeply religious,” the news of their deaths hit the family hard.

August 3rd, 2013, 10:06 am


zoo said:

Salafist preacher: “We would like to bring the Muslims in Lebanon and Tripoli the good news of the martyrdom of two college boys..”

Lebanese suicide bomber ‘martyred’ in Syria: Salafist preacher
August 03, 2013

TRIPOLI, Lebanon: A Lebanese man from the northern city of Tripoli died a “martyr” earlier this week in a suicide bombing that targeted soldiers in Syria, a sheikh from Salafist Hizb Ut-Tahrir said Saturday.

“We would like to bring the Muslims in Lebanon and Tripoli the good news of the martyrdom of two college boys Abu Moaz and … Abu Othman who [were part of an attack] on the Abu Zeid checkpoint near Crac des Chevaliers in Homs during a suicide mission,” Sheikh Mohammad Ibrahim, a member of Lebanese group, said in a statement.

Read more:

August 3rd, 2013, 10:11 am


Syrialover said:


APPLE-MINI (# 20) also has this anti-Syrian fantasy of Chinese investing in the country.

Yeah, that’s right. Like in African and Asian countries where today’s Chinese swarm in and set up fast-spreading enclaves of small enterprises and traders markets that employ few locals, brutally undercut and displace domestic businesses and contribute nothing to national revenue. Then sweep up local real estate, becoming the world’s most cutthroat landlords.

Check it out APPLE-MINI. The bitter complaint in these counties is that Chinese are racist, ruthless and exploitative, with a chilling lack of interest in integrating, contributing or committing to local communities. There are riots and political movements to kick them out.

So first we have the hilarious boast by SANA about investment by Iran (# 48) and now this negative vision. Any other bright ideas?

FACT: there will be zero-minus investment in the failed-state Kingdom of Assad. Just further desperate collapse of businesses, capital flight and disinvestment.

August 3rd, 2013, 10:42 am


Akbar Palace said:

Iran’s president-elect has called Israel a “wound”.

Does anyone have a Band-Aid?

August 3rd, 2013, 10:43 am


Tara said:

Yes, that is charisma.   

Syria opposition ‘deeply concerned’ for Italian priest
Published August 03, 2013AFP

BEIRUT (AFP) –  Syria’s main opposition group called Saturday for the immediate release of an Italian Jesuit priest who went to negotiate with jihadists and who is feared to have been taken prisoner.

The National Coalition said it “expresses its deep concern over the disappearance of Father Paolo (Dall’Oglio) over four days ago in Raqa and calls for the disclosure of any information that could help identify his location and ensure his safety.”

“We urge all parties involved in the disappearance of Father Paolo to immediately come forward and release him,” it added.
On Friday, the Britain-based Observatory said activists who demonstrated outside the jihadist group’s headquarters were told by ISIS that Dall’Oglio was their “guest”.

Known for his charisma and good relations with peaceful activists, he has lobbied several Arab and Western officials to support the democratic opposition for fear of the rise of radical Islamism.

August 3rd, 2013, 10:56 am


Syrialover said:

Where ZOO and his buddies do a crazy-confused hypocritical dance around reality.

Article: Assad’s no enemy of al qaaeda

Always interesting to review the evidence of complicity and manipulation by the regime and hear what the latest defectors say.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:10 am


Tara said:

تفاحة did it again.  She jinxed Damascus.   تفاحة is my favorite poster!       

Syria rebels seize arms dump near Damascus
Syrian rebels have captured an arms and ammunition dump in Qalamun, near Damascus, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

“Liwa al-Islam, Al-Nusra Front, Al-Tawhid battalion, the Maghaweer (rebel commando force) and the Qalamun Martyrs’ battalion … captured an ammunitions depot near the village of Qaldun in the Qalamun area” northeast of the capital, the Observatory said.
They seized “anti-tank weapons and ground-to-ground Grad missiles, as well as a variety of other ammunition, after clashes overnight from Friday to Saturday”, it said.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:18 am


ziad said:

A Palestinian village reaches the end of the road

Kafr Qaddum residents are marking two years since they first launched their weekly protest against closure of the main route leading past their village to neighboring locales.

Why? Because Israel closed the road. Why? Because the neighboring settlement of Kedumim spread out to it and blocked it with its homes. That was in 2003. The road has been impassable ever since. On top of its closure came land theft − of the village’s 24,000 dunams ‏(6,000 acres‏). Of them, 4,000 dunams were taken to build the surrounding settlements, and another 11,000 became off-limits to Kafr Qaddum residents without permission from the Israel Defense Forces. The village, a large share of whose population made a living working in Israel, fell on hard times.

Exactly two years ago, in early July 2011, the village’s so-called popular committee decided to launch a campaign aimed at reopening the road. The weekly protest over the thoroughfare has lent it its new war-torn appearance. As in other Palestinian villages waging struggles, here too the residents come out every

Friday to demonstrate, together with Israeli and foreign activists; here too protesters have yet to score any real victories, aside from turning Kafr Qaddum into yet another Palestinian national symbol.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:24 am


Syrialover said:

Nightmare evidence that Syria is a failed State.

Jaw-dropping aerial view of the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, now double the size in earlier photos:

August 3rd, 2013, 11:28 am


Syrialover said:

ZIAD #59,

Yeah, yeah sure, whatever about Israel.

How about a thought for all the desperate Syrians living in Zaatari or worse?

The UN is now warning that refugee camps of Syrians may become permanent as they did for Palestinians.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:36 am


Observer said:

TARA this video is even better


August 3rd, 2013, 12:01 pm


Hopeful said:

#55 Akbar

I do no know what he meant, but I actually like the term. It is a wound that has been bleeding for 60 years and it is time for it to heal. Perhaps a band-aid to shield it from the outside poisonous environment would actually help to let I heal itself by itself.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:02 pm


ziad said:

SYRIALVER #61 said:

“How about a thought for all the desperate Syrians living in Zaatari or worse?”

SL: Syrian refugees in Zaatari and elsewhere break my heart the same way oppressed Palestinians do. If you haven’t noticed, the Syrian revolution quit long time ago, if it ever was, about freedom from oppression. The same people, who dispossess, imprison, and kill Palestinians are the root cause of the problems in Syria. Those are supported by world Zionists and treasonous sell-out Arabs.

Blaming Zaatari on Assad is dumb, plain and simple. I am proud of him standing up and fighting with all he got. You prefer him to surrender Syria to become another stooge state to US/Israel like Jordan.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:08 pm


apple_mini said:

First the opposition accused the regime kidnapped priest Paolo the same way the opposition accusing the regime being responsible for kidnapping of two archbishops.

When the lie from the opposition became too absurd, the opposition changed their story by telling us that the priest is on a secret mission hence in incommunicado.

Finally even the second lie can no longer hold up against any scrutiny, we started to hear the opposition demanding those armed gangs to release the priest immediately.

As we concluded before the Syrian opposition will be in history book for its failure and moral corruption.

Right now we just have to keep enduring their never ending lies.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:15 pm


Akbar Palace said:


You know what, I get it. It didn’t work out so well for the Palestinians. Let THEM and the Israelis work it out together before the muqawamistas kill another 100000.

Just tired of the Iranian towel-heads instigating more war. You’d think they’ve had enough. And if Israel is a muslim “wound”, what the hell are the hundreds of thousands of dead across the ME from Algeria to Iraq? A scratch? Vote the towel-head warmongers out of office once you guys get your freedom. I’ll be the first to celebrate.

I’m hopeful.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:21 pm


ilya said:

In his first interview since the overthrow of President Mohamed Morsi last month, Egypt’s commanding general sharply criticized the U.S. response, accusing the Obama administration of disregarding the Egyptian popular will and of providing insufficient support amid threats of a civil war.

“You left the Egyptians. You turned your back on the Egyptians, and they won’t forget that,” said an indignant Gen. Abdel Fatah al-Sissi, speaking of the U.S. government. “Now you want to continue turning your backs on Egyptians?”

Sissi is widely considered the most powerful man in Egypt, wielding more control than anyone over the country’s direction after a tumultuous two and a half years in which the military has shoved aside two presidents following popular uprisings. He denied interest in running for president himself but did not rule it out.

Although Sissi gives occasional speeches, he rarely sits down for interviews. But over the course of two hours in an ornate reception room in Cairo’s Defense Ministry on Thursday, he provided his most detailed explanation yet of why he decided to oust Morsi, the nation’s first democratically elected president. Sissi also expressed deep disappointment that the United States has not been more eager to embrace his rationale.

Sissi’s comments are a measure of just how thoroughly the Obama administration has alienated both sides in a profoundly polarized and unsettled Egypt, all while trying to remain neutral. Morsi’s supporters in the Muslim Brotherhood regularly accuse the United States of acquiescing to a military coup.

Sissi spoke on the same day that Secretary of State John F. Kerry made the administration’s most supportive comments to date, saying that Egypt’s army was “restoring democracy.”

“The military was asked to intervene by millions and millions of people,” Kerry said during a visit to Pakistan. “The military did not take over to the best of our judgment — so far.”

The U.S. government is required by law to halt non-humanitarian assistance when a democratically elected government is forced from office in a military coup. But the Obama administration appears determined to avoid using that term, and to prevent a cutoff kicking in of the $1.3 billion that the U.S. government sends to Egypt annually. Much of that aid goes to the military.

Since Morsi’s July 3 ouster, U.S. officials have cautioned Sissi and other generals to show restraint in their dealings with protesters, at least 140 of whom have been killed in clashes with security forces. The Obama administration has also encouraged the military to reconcile with the Muslim Brotherhood.

That prospect appears distant, with authorities promising a fresh crackdown on Islamist protests and Morsi continuing to be detained in an undisclosed location, unable to communicate with even his family.

Still, the furthest Washington has been willing to go in penalizing the military is to postpone the sale of four F-16 fighters. Most analysts say the delay is purely symbolic.

Sissi bristled at the move. “This is not the way to deal with a patriotic military,” he said.

Like many pro-military Egyptians, Sissi appeared angry that the United States has not fully endorsed what he described as “a free people who rebelled against an unjust political rule.” Supporters of Morsi’s removal compare it to longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak’s 2011 ouster, which was applauded in Washington. But unlike Mubarak, Morsi had been elected in a vote widely seen as free and fair.

The Egyptian military has long received critical support from the United States, and in return has upheld Egypt’s decades-old peace treaty with Israel while serving as a key regional ally.

The ties between Cairo and Washington remain close, although Egypt has recently begun receiving far more aid from regional backers — including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates — and American influence in Egypt appears to be waning.

Sissi said that Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel calls him “almost every day” but that President Obama has not called since Morsi’s ouster.

Egypt’s commanding general suggested that if the United States wants to avoid further bloodshed in Egypt, it should persuade the Brotherhood to back down from the Cairo sit-ins it has maintained since July 3.

“The U.S. administration has a lot of leverage and influence with the Muslim Brotherhood, and I’d really like the U.S. administration to use this leverage with them to resolve the conflict,” Sissi said.

Morsi came to power last year amid Egypt’s first wave of voting after the toppling of Mubarak. The newly elected president received much of his support from his own Muslim Brotherhood but also won the backing of non-Islamist Egyptians who favored the group because of its reputation for honesty and good works.

Sissi said he had recognized problems with Morsi from the day he was inaugurated. The president, Sissi said, was “not a president for all Egyptians, but a president representing his followers and supporters.”

One of Morsi’s first major acts in office was to sweep away an older generation of military leaders and appoint Sissi to command the country’s armed forces. At the time, many observers speculated that Morsi had selected Sissi because he was more sympathetic than other commanders to the Muslim Brotherhood, which had been oppressed by generations of military-backed leaders.

read more

August 3rd, 2013, 12:21 pm


Syrialover said:

For those who know and care about Father Paolo Dall’Oglio, now missing in Syria, below is a link to a wonderful piece about this extraordinary man.

He may be Christian, but his love, understanding and respect for Islam described here is golden compared with the distorted, confused ranting of the self-appointed “holy warriors” now infesting Syria.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:29 pm



Blaming Zaatari on Assad is dumb, plain and simple. I am proud of him standing up and fighting with all he got. You prefer him to surrender Syria to become another stooge state to US/Israel like Jordan.

Thus the above comment by zeezee is one of the dumbest, most ridiculous broohaha uttered by a d-p athad sniffer. Zaatari refugees had homes that were bombed by d-p athad barrels in the same manner. And being proud of such an abominable excuse for a living creature is a thing only evil can do.

Here is one more causes for d-p sniffers sniffers’ pride . These contemptible excuses for living creatures are shameless.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:50 pm


Tara said:


Thanks. Marvelous. Hopefully the regime will have no tank in few months.

There has been recent reversal of the victories achieved by the hezbollized Assad’s thugs which is quite encouraging. The regime has no longer the upper hands.

August 3rd, 2013, 12:51 pm


Syrialover said:

ZIAD #64,


The people in Zaatari camp in Jordan are people that the Assad regime does not want or care about. That was the case when they were in Syria – for years it’s been said that for the Assad regime, probably 70% of the Syrian population was irrelevant and expendable. Now we have over two years of terrible daily proof.

And why keep going on about Assad not surrendering to the US and “Zionist conspiracies” when the red hot blazing truth is he has already surrendered Syria’s fate and the lives of Syrians to Iran and Russia?

(SANA has even provided an excuse phony figure on how much Iran is paying him for it – see post #48)

Is that the reality about Assad that’s making you proud? That he’s attacked, terrified and chased Syrians out of their country? That he’s eagerly laid down with his hands and feet in the air to make Syria a dependent colony of Iran?

August 3rd, 2013, 1:04 pm


ilya said:

Following is a poem by Seyed Imon Rizvi who details the agony the West and its allies are imposing on Syria.

After so many countries, now in Syria,
Increasing is the western bacteria,
The bacteria of hypocrisy and lies,
Which is in a dangerous disguise,
Under the banner of help and peace,
They seem like a host of white fleece,
They do things very secretly,
Pursuing interests so actively,

Is what they want just conflicts
In the entire world’s districts?

They like when people kill each other,
It is how they do indirectly smother,

Try to understand what is a war,
Because it opens the profits’ door,

For the imperialists and dictators,
And of course for their own creators,

When imperialists start a broil,
They make sure they pay for their toil

So, they pose to help by selling arms,
As if they are selling them charms!

In return of arms they make money,
So much that it’s not even funny,

On the other hand people also die,
In the region where they don’t comply,

They want the entire world to obey,
They order and want them to okay!

As long as one stays this way,
A nice attitude they will display,

But for instance if one says “NO” to them,
At first they get angry and hem,
And then come bans and sanctions,
Penalties and all kinds of aggressions,
Still if they are not a success,
They wage a war to make stress,
So, that’s what they did in Syria,
It was their anger and hysteria,
Because they couldn’t do anything,
Through a war they wanted to sting,
But they forgot who they were facing,
What kind of enemy they were racing,
They already are, their army, replacing,
And because of defeats they are reducing,
In they then brought a Takfiri horde,
No human values can they afford,
They ruthlessly rip the chests of people,
And eat out their hearts like animal,
So the West and its cruel tactics,
Has nothing to do with ethics,
So, once and for all, everyone,
Let’s finish the savagery thus begun.

August 3rd, 2013, 1:17 pm



All people are expendable and irrelevant to d-p athad. It has a sense of entitlement and mania that makes it think that it is the only thing worthy in the universe. It is the sickest, dumbest, most despicable excuse for a living creature in our age. Just think of the way it treats those who defend it, and those held hostage to it by their own fears, it uses them like used tissues, which is a well-deserved treatment, they have caused themselves.

blah blah blah
blah … blah .. blah blah.


August 3rd, 2013, 1:18 pm


Hopeful said:

#66 Akbar

I know you get it. You are a voice of reason on this board, despite the constant hatred that comes your way.

It is a bleeding wound for the Palestinians and it is a bleeding wound for the Israelis. It is not just a Muslim or a Jewish wound. It is a wound that needs to heal. And I agree that everyone should leave the Israelis and Palestinans alone to heal it on their own. That goes for the crazy Iranians who want to eliminate Israel, it goes for the crazy born-again Christians who believe that the Jews must take over the whole region to get ready for the second coming of Christ. It goes for the radical Muslims who want to build an Islamic Emirate. And it goes for the radical Jews who believe that the land has been given to them by God.

August 3rd, 2013, 1:18 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

HA losses has been under reported, Hundreds killed close to thousand injured, and today we hear some defected.

Thank you Observer, those missiles count in hundreds, this would not happened without some defections

US will not help with weapons till the end is near, US policy is to destroy every Arab country that had revolution

August 3rd, 2013, 1:20 pm


Syrialover said:

ILYA #67

OK we get that you are bored with Syria’s problems. So why aren’t you dumping your tediously long cut-pastes about Egypt on an Egyptian discussion forum?

Or are you one of those cyber pests who automatically dumps the same stuff on lots of forums?

August 3rd, 2013, 1:21 pm


Syrialover said:


“US policy is to destroy every Arab country that had revolution”

I respect most of what you say, but sorry – walking around with that theory filling your head leaves no room for constructive thinking about current realities and the future.

Put some of the blame and responsibility for active destruction where it lies. With fellow Arabs. The MB in several settings. Foreign Islamists. And Iranians. And Russians.

August 3rd, 2013, 2:05 pm


zoo said:

Selim Idriss desperate call to Al Nusra…

The rebels have apparently received the long-awaited arms shipments promised by some pro-government Western and Arab powers, including the United States, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, reports said.
In an apparent show of moderation, the media officials of the FSA have recently urged all foreign elements fighting alongside the rebels in Syria to leave the country, saying that they will not allow any extreme or terrorist group to stay in Syria in what they called the “post-Assad” era.

Yet, reports indicate that most of the powerful fighting groups against the administration of President Bashar al-Assad follow extreme Islamist methodology.

August 3rd, 2013, 2:15 pm


Syrialover said:

Hey HAMSTER Habibi did you check it out as instructed? That weak propaganda cartoon offered in #78?

Did it magically distract you from thinking about the actions of the Assad regime, Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and all those other inconvenient things ZIAD wants unmentioned?

No, I thought it didn’t.

August 3rd, 2013, 2:22 pm


Syrialover said:

ZOO #60,

You offer the statement: “… the media officials of the FSA have recently urged all foreign elements fighting alongside the rebels in Syria to leave the country, saying that they will not allow any extreme or terrorist group to stay in Syria in what they called the “post-Assad” era.”

Yet you pretend to be confused, still insisting that everyone who opposes Assad is an ally of al Qaeda.

August 3rd, 2013, 2:28 pm


Tara said:


I checked it out. What an effective piece of communication. How fool was I . Thanks to Ziad’s link, I am now a changed woman..


Show me what shoes a woman like, I know what kind of woman she is. Her taste for spikes tells how bored she is.. I think she is looking for some fleet excitement with those spikes. One can’t blame her..

August 3rd, 2013, 2:49 pm


Uzair8 said:

I read on Deenport on a SKT Welfare thread how videos of charity aid reaching dangerous areas will be released soon.

‘Videos of Ramadan food parcels being delivered in extremely dangerous but needy areas will be released soon. Thank you to all who have supported so far, but the work goes on and people are now starving in this blessed land.’

The user tells us a sister sold her wedding jewellery and donated the amount raised (£11,500) to the Syrian Appeal. Link to her story including a letter in her own words describing her motivation. Also includes image of the jewellery.

I’m unable to link directly to the Deenport thread however visit the site and under the ‘Messages’ column click on ‘SKT Welfare’. The thread should appear on the far right.

More on the user ‘Ismail Ray’. If I remember correct my first post on SC was to share an article by him on the role of Shaykh Yaqoubi in the revolution. It was an article Prof. Landis included in the next SC round-up.

August 3rd, 2013, 2:59 pm


revenire said:

66. AKBAR PALACE said: “Just tired of the Iranian towel-heads instigating more war.”

Racist much?

August 3rd, 2013, 3:56 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

US wants Syria post Assad to be divided , and destroyed.,Syrians want Syria united,Russia accepts division.

Unimportant news,Ariel Sharon is dead

scientists are saying changing weather caused violence in the Middle East, some said, the population increase was the main reason for the Arab Spring

August 3rd, 2013, 4:16 pm


revenire said:

1,000 terrorists were killed in Al-Ghazlaaniyya.

August 3rd, 2013, 4:21 pm


revenire said:

Syrialover why would anyone believe anything the FSA press office releases? They don’t want foreign fighters? Sure they don’t. Seems to me this entire time they didn’t mind them too much. Why now?

August 3rd, 2013, 4:45 pm


revenire said:

Syrialover again, why would anyone listen to Weiss? Now Lebanon? You might as well post the Daily Mail or National Enquirer or the Tattler. I can’t believe you think this stuff has any weight outside of cannibal cheerleader circles.

August 3rd, 2013, 4:50 pm


revenire said:

I thought Father Paolo Dall’Oglio was just fine and on a secret mission? Guess that was yet another opposition lie.

August 3rd, 2013, 4:52 pm


apple_mini said:

Just came back from Zara store. Wow, that place has never seen so many shoppers before. There must have been over 500 shoppers when we were there.

The store has one day only Happy Day 50% off sale. The company made a bold plan and preparation and customers or shall we just say Damascenes respond nicely.

All cashiers are open and shoppers still need to wait over 15 minutes to get rung in.

There is a big announcement by people that they are moving on from this bloody and miserable war. I am pretty sure not all shoppers there support Assad. But it would be impossible to imagine that anyone of them would support the war.

To the opposition: the war might not end any time soon, but your revolution is dead. So get ready to pack up and get out of the way.

August 3rd, 2013, 5:09 pm



That maginficent peice of art posted by zeezee was so inspirating. I am inspirated beyond comprehension.

It inspirated rethpect, fear, and recognition of the blinding brilliance that comes with degenerate dog poop sniffing.

August 3rd, 2013, 5:15 pm


ilya said:

Jenan Moussa ‏@jenanmoussa 56s
Kurdish teacher tells me: ‘in school where i studied i couldn’t speak Kurdish. Now I teach Kurdish Language there. This is my revolution’
Jenan Moussa ‏@jenanmoussa 27m
I ask a Kurdish young YPG fighter where he stands. Is he with regime or revolution. He says: ‘neither nor. I want my rights.’ #TwitterKurds
Jenan Moussa ‏@jenanmoussa 1h
Check this Kurdish female fighter who says she is fighting Jabhat AlNusra and ISIS.
I ask one YPG why he is fighting. He says ‘I have a cause. I don’t live to die; I die so that my people can live.’ #Twitter Kurds #Syria:
Kurds YPG spokesman tells me: #Syria opposition wants Islamic state &Sharia in future Syria. We don’t want that; will never accept it. #Twitter
Kurds have not betrayed anyone,revolution is working for them …
Free Kurdistan free Syria !!!

August 3rd, 2013, 5:18 pm


revenire said:

Syrians in Damascus celebrate Syrian Arab Army Day. Stay defiant to foreign invasion. 2-8-13

August 3rd, 2013, 5:43 pm


ilya said:

Turkey Supports Al Nusra how sad…

Wounded Al-Nusra / FSA terrorist gets kicked in his face by angry Kurds.
Wounded Al-Nusra / FSA fighters are brought to ‘Turkey’ for treatment. Over 20 wounded Islamists were brought into Turkey today, including the leader of the Al-Nusra Front. They were injured during fights with the Kurdish YPG Forces in West-Kurdistan (Northern Syria). Turkey is treating these terrorists, but they get their treatment in the Kurdish part of ‘Turkey’ (North-Kurdistan). The Kurds here are the same as the Kurds in Syria, a great part of the YPG fighters consists of Kurds from ‘Turkish Kurdistan’. All Kurds are against these Islamist rats, artificial borders (Turkey / Iran / Iraq / Syria) do not change the will, the power and the struggle of a nation which is united and always has been.

August 3rd, 2013, 5:49 pm


ilya said:

#TurkeySupportNusra See here….AKP government is still supporting Al-Qaida linked groups who have killed many Kurds in Rojava/Kurdistan Region in Syria. Among those who have been killed are mainly civilians and mostly of them women and children. Different reports have indicated that Al-Qaida linked groups had a meeting in Antep, a city near Syrian border where the Al-Qaida groups were encouraged to attack the Kurdish civilians. It is also reported that a radical islamic “Humanitarian Relief Foundation” called İnsani Yardım Vakfı (İHH ) have organised the travel of 180 Islamic extremists from the UK to kill people in Syria and Kurdistan. Some of them from the UK including İgbal Kasım, Hussein Haalem, Hussein Muhammed Tashtayaq, Nasihi Adam, Niah Mohammed Tahir, Arif Waqar, Dad Asgar Ali, Younis Rizwaan Qaisir have either decided not to go Syria and stay in Istanbul or will later join the Al-qaida groups. They are “guests” of Turkish government at hotels around Taksim square. It is not only Al-Qaida groups are responsible for the crime took place. For any potential massacre in Kurdistan region in Syria, Turkish ruling AKP party will be the responsible political entity. Because their are supporting El Nusra and other groups in order to prevent the Kurds to make their decision on their future.

In the meantime the Kurdish parties have stated that “40 000 Kurds in the towns Kubeysîn, Cerablûs, Minbic, Til Eran, Til Hasil around Aleppo are in a danger situation due to Al Qaida linked groups attacked and urged EU to intervene and prevent further killing and escalations.

Many people including Arabs, Syranic and Armenian people who escaped from the sectarian war and violence of so called Free Syrian Army and Bashar Asad regime in Syria to relatively peaceful Kurdish region. Now Turkish ruling party supported Al-Qaida groups are destabilizing this region too. Kurdish parties call for humanitarian aid. However it is reported that Turkish government is trying to prevent the food, medicine ect collected by pro Kurdish organisation in Turkey and in Kurdistan region in Turkey to be passed to the Kurds in Syria. Shame on AKP government

August 3rd, 2013, 5:55 pm


ghufran said:

Qsair now:

تعود مدينة القصير في ريف حمص بخفر إلى الحياة، بعد نحو شهرين من انتهاء المعارك الضارية التي مكنت القوات السورية في حزيران الماضي من استعادة هذه المنطقة الإستراتيجية من أيدي المسلحين.
إلى جانب الطريق الرئيسية في المدينة، يجلس شرطيان على كنبة وهما يطردان الذباب، يتابعان بلا اكتراث سيارات قليلة تعبر شوارع المدينة التي استحالت أشبه بمدينة أشباح، بعدما هجرتها غالبية سكانها البالغ عددهم 50 ألفا.
وعلى الحاجز النصفي الفاصل بين جانبي الطريق، يعمل ثلاثة أشخاص على إزالة الحشائش الضارة، ويزرعون أشجار النخيل ويقلمون ورود الدفلى الزهرية اللون. خلفهم، لافتة من الحديد زرقاء اللون كتب فيها بالأبيض «مصرف التوفير – فرع القصير»، خرقها الرصاص. أمامها، لم يبق من التمثال الإسمنتي للراحل باسل الأسد، سوى هيكل حديدي.
ويقول فادي (50 عاما)، وهو خياط تعرض متجره إلى دمار كامل «ازرع هذه الأشجار لأنها ترمز إلى الحياة والحب. الإرهابيون دمروا مدينتنا، ونحن سنعيد بناءها لأنني ارغب في رؤية بلادي خضراء مجددا وعودة السكان».
وتبدو آثار المعارك بوضوح في كل أنحاء المدينة التي استحالت مبانيها كتلا إسمنتية خرقها الرصاص والقذائف، كما تضررت البنية التحتية في المدينة بشكل كبير. ويعمل الموظفون في شركة الكهرباء على إعادة مد خط للتوتر العالي، وتثبيت خطوط جديدة وأعمدة إنارة في «شارع الجلاء»، الذي يحمل هذا الاسم احتفاء بخروج الجيش الفرنسي من سوريا في العام 1946.
وفي مبنى الاتصالات، تبدو الأضرار واضحة في التمديدات والسنترالات التي أحرقت جميعها. ويقول المدير الجديد للمركز مطانيوس الشاعر إن «الإرهابيين دمروا كل شيء قبل 48 ساعة من تحرير المدينة، والأضرار تصل كلفتها إلى مليار ليرة سورية (57 مليون دولار)».
ويضيف الشاعر، الذي عين حديثا بعد فرار سلفه مع المسلحين، «انتهينا للتو من تثبيت مركز اتصالات بسعة 1200 خط للسكان والخدمات الحكومية، و80 من هذه الخطوط هي عاملة. لكن قبل ذلك، كانت السعة اكبر بكثير».
ولا يملك المسؤولون المحليون أرقاما دقيقة لأعداد السكان الذين عادوا إلى المدينة، ففي حين يقدر الشاعر العدد بنحو ألفي شخص، تقول رئيسة البلدية شذا مراد إن العائدين لم يتجاوزوا 600 شخص حتى تاريخه.
وفي غرب المدينة حيث الأحياء المتعاطفة إجمالا مع المسلحين، لا تزال المناطق مقفرة في شكل كامل، باستثناء ثلاثة أشخاص. ويستخدم محمود أحمد (74 عاما) الموظف السابق في الدولة، دراجته الهوائية لينتقل إلى احد الينابيع لملء دلوين بالماء.
لم يترك محمود وزوجته فتون المدينة سوى ليومين اشتدت فيهما المعارك بشكل غير مسبوق. وتقول الزوجة، في مطبخها المظلم، «لا نملك المال لاستئجار منزل، لذلك عدنا، حتى في ظل عدم توافر الماء والكهرباء». ويأمل جارهما عبدالله مسرة، الذي بقي في القصير بدوره، بان تتمكن عائلته من العودة بعد عيد الفطر.
وتبدو الحياة في الأحياء ذات الغالبية المسيحية في شرق المدينة أكثر حركة. وبين طرفي المدينة، قرب ساحة الساعة وسط القصير، تبدو آثار الحرب ظاهرة على المسجد الكبير وكنيسة مار الياس للروم الأرثوذكس. وتملأ الثقوب القبة الذهبية لهذه الكنيسة التي بات جرسها غير قابل للاستخدام. وفي الداخل، تعرض المذبح الرخامي للكسر، في حين احترقت أجزاء من أيقونة تجسد القديس الياس. وعلى الجدار الداخلي الأصفر، كتبت شعارات مثل «سوف ينتصر دين سيدنا محمد بإذن الله على الطغاة» و«حزب الله حرر هذه الكنيسة».
ويقول جعفر نصور (40 عاما) «نظفنا كنيستنا المتضررة، ومعا سنحاول إعادتها إلى سابق عهدها بإمكاناتنا المتواضعة»، مشيرا إلى أن المطرانية «لم تصب بأي أذى، ويقوم كاهن كل احد بترؤس القداس» في المدينة التي يشكل المسيحيون 10 في المئة من سكانها.
وعلى الطرف الآخر من الساحة، يبدو المسجد في حال يرثى لها، بعد تدمير نصف مئذنته، وتكدس الحجارة والزجاج المتكسر في قاعة الصلاة. ويقول المسؤول عن الأمن في المدينة المقدم رائد عبود «نحن في طور القيام بكل ما يجب لإعادة الأمور إلى سابق عهدها، لكن في ما يتعلق بإعادة الاعمار يجب الانتظار، لأننا بلد في حالة حرب».
Even if the war stops tomorrow, millions of people will have no homes to go back to, and those who do will face tremendous challenges due to the destruction in infrastructure and the state of chaos in government institutions and services in many places.
The bottom line is, Syrians, pro and anti regime, shot themselves in the foot with the help of Turkey, GCC, Russia and Iran, saying that one side deserves most of the blame, whether true or not, is kids talk, it takes two to tango and both sides are partners in this bloody dance. There are no winners here except Israel.
(ma akhra min hal thawra illa hal nizaam albheem, allahuma inni sa’em)

August 3rd, 2013, 6:48 pm


ghufran said:

It is clear now that the term ” FSA” is merely a cover to distract foreign governments from the fact that 90% of armed rebels belong to Islamist brigades. Most “FSA” officers live in Turkey but some sneak in on occasions to hold meetings or give videotaped (paid)speeches, the vast majority of the battles fought and videos taken show bearded men with a black flag (or bandana. Syrians are now surrounded by all types of thugs: Assad’s mukhabarat, non government Shabihas from both sides, common criminals with no political agenda, Islamist terrorists and opportunists money-hungry FSA cartoon figures.
Ramadan Kareem, indeed !!

August 3rd, 2013, 8:27 pm


don said:

Are Israelis above moderation?

66. Akbar Palace said: “Just tired of the Iranian TOWEL-HEADS”

August 3rd, 2013, 10:33 pm


zoo said:

Algerian moslem Kabyles say no to mandatory public fasting

300 join rare public lunch to protest mandatory Ramadan fast in Algeria

Published August 03, 2013

ALGIERS, Algeria – About 300 people in a restive northern region of Algeria have joined a public lunch during Ramadan to protest what they say is persecution of people who refuse to observe the religious fast.

Saturday’s protest lunch was highly unusual for North Africa, where fasting during the Muslim holy month is effectively legally required.

It was held to protest the decision of security forces to question three young people who were eating outside last week last week in the Kabylie region during the 18-hour daily fasting period.

Read more:

August 3rd, 2013, 10:57 pm


don said:

So, What Is the Benghazi Cover-Up All About?

Shortly after the Benghazi debacle in September 2012, it was rumored that the terrorist attack occurred in the context of a CIA operation whereby Libyan arms, which presumably were either purchased or scooped up by the Agency in the wake of Gaddafi’s overthrow, were being shipped to the rebels in Syria. According to rumor, this is why the CIA had an “annex” in Benghazi; it explains why there were CIA men on the scene, two of whom were killed, and perhaps also why Ambassador Chris Stevens traveled from Tripoli to Benghazi with essentially no security.

Last week, ABC’s Jake Tapper delivered a bombshell in the form of seeming confirmation of the longstanding rumor:

Sources now tell CNN dozens of people working for the CIA were on the ground that night, and that the agency is going to great lengths to make sure whatever it was doing, remains a secret.

CNN has learned the CIA is involved in what one source calls an unprecedented attempt to keep the spy agency’s Benghazi secrets from ever leaking out. …

Among the many secrets still yet to be told about the Benghazi mission, is just how many Americans were there the night of the attack.

A source now tells CNN that number was 35, with as many as seven wounded, some seriously.

While it is still not known how many of them were CIA, a source tells CNN that 21 Americans were working in the building known as the annex, believed to be run by the agency. …

Speculation on Capitol Hill has included the possibility the U.S. agencies operating in Benghazi were secretly helping to move surface-to-air missiles out of Libya, through Turkey, and into the hands of Syrian rebels.

It is clear that two U.S. agencies were operating in Benghazi, one was the State Department, and the other was the CIA.

ABC’s most recent reports say that the CIA is going to extraordinary lengths to silence employees who were present in Benghazi, including administering monthly polygraph examinations.

In exclusive communications obtained by CNN, one insider writes, “You don’t jeopardize yourself, you jeopardize your family as well [if you talk to Congress or the press about Benghazi].”

August 3rd, 2013, 11:31 pm


don said:

Syrian PM says West not serious about political solution to crisis

Syrian Prime Minister Wael al- Halqi said the West is not serious about finding a political solution to the Syrian crisis while stressing his government’s commitment to such a solution to the 28-month conflict, an Iranian TV channel reported on Saturday.

“The West and America and some Arab countries are not serious about finding a political solution in Syria, and they are still supporting the rebels with arms and ammunition,” al-Halqi said in an interview with Iranian al-Alam TV.

In the meantime, the prime minister stressed his country’s willingness to participate in any conference that would be conducive to finding a solution to the crisis, particularly the long-awaited Geneva peace conference.

He pointed out “the other party has neither clear stances nor clear vision,” adding there are contradictions among the opposition ranks.

“As a government, we support every peaceful solution that could lead to a democratic, plural and political future for Syria,” he stressed.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:49 pm


Ghufran said:

Sisi is not sissy:
شن الفريق أول عبد الفتاح السيسي، النائب الأول لرئيس الوزراء، وزير الدفاع والإنتاج الحربي، هجومًا حادًا علي الإداره الأمريكية والرئيس باراك أوباما، متهمًا إياه بتجاهل إرادة الشعب المصري، وعدم تقديم الدعم الكافي لمصر أثناء فتره حرجة من تاريخها تعرضت فيه لخطر الحرب الأهلية.
وقال السيسي، في أول حوار صحفي له منذ عزل الرئيس السابق محمد مرسي، لجريدة “واشنطن بوست” الأوسع انتشارًا فى الولايات المتحدة: إن ما حدث في مصر كان تمردًا من شعب حر ضد حاكم لم يتصف بالعدل، مؤكدا أن الفكرة التي توحد جماعة الإخوان المسلمين ليست الفكرة الوطنية، أو القومية، أو الشعور بالانتماء للبلد، مضيفًا أنه شعر منذ اليوم الأول لحكم مرسي أنه لم يكن رئيسا لكل المصريين، لكن رئيسًا لتابعيه ومؤيديه فقط”.
Sisi denied that he wants to run for president.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:51 pm


don said:

Syrian army defeats rebels in Homs

According to the state-run SANA news agency, unites of the Syrian army killed and wounded members of the armed opposition groups in a number of districts in Homs and foiled an attempt to detonate a booby-trapped car in al-Hisn town.

The army also destroyed two tunnels used by the rebels to smuggle weapons and ammunition, said SANA, adding that an anti- aircraft cannon and ammunition were destroyed in the town of Talbiseh.

The army pursued the rebels and inflicted heavy losses upon them in Bab-Hud, al-Waer, Joret al-Shayah and al-Qarabis neighborhoods, the report said.

August 3rd, 2013, 11:59 pm


ziad said:

أفقت وقد جال هذا في خاطري. في عام 1920 زار حاييم وايزمان فلسطين وطلب من جهاز الإستخبارات في الحركة الصهيونيّة بأن تعدّ خطة شاملة لمقارعة الرفض العربي للصهيونيّة. وقد جاء في البند السادس من الخطة المُعدّة بالحرف: “إثارة الشقاق بين المسلمين والمسيحيّين”. هذا برسم من يقلّل من المؤامرات الصهيونيّة في حياتنا.
النصّ في صفحة 17 من كتاب هليل كوهين, جيش من الظلال: التعامل الفلسطيني مع الصهيونيّة, 1917-1948 (النسخة الإنكليزيّة)..

Asad AbuKhalil

August 3rd, 2013, 11:59 pm


don said:

3 European arms experts killed in Syrian coastal city

Three European arms experts working with Syrian rebels were killed Saturday in the countryside of Syrian coastal city of Latakia, pro-government Sham FM radio cited a military source as saying.

The report said that the three engineers had been working as experts in making rockets between the town of Kansaba and al- Rihanieh in the countryside of Latakia.

Sham FM gave no further details about the nature of the military operation that led to the killing of the experts.

The incident comes at a time when the rebel Free Syrian Army ( FSA) threatens to carry out “qualitative” operations in the capital Damascus in response to what its leaders say “the regime’s brutality.”

The rebels have apparently received the long-awaited arms shipments promised by some Western and Arab powers, including the United States, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, reports said.

August 4th, 2013, 12:05 am


don said:

Nine Syrians killed in air strike on Lebanon’s border town

Nine Syrians were killed and nine others wounded on Saturday when Syrian fighter planes launched a strike on the eastern Lebanese Bekaa town of Arsal, the state-run National News Agency (NNA) reported.

Arsal, 12 km from the border with Syria, has been used as a conduit for weapons and rebels entering Syria, and also serves as a refuge for people fleeing the conflict in Syrian.

Other border areas in the country’s north and east have also been struck by frequent cross-border shelling and stray fire from Syria, while the Syrian government has told Lebanon to better control its porous border to prevent the smuggling of fighters and arms.

August 4th, 2013, 12:21 am


ziad said:

ولاء يوسف، التي ذبحها اليوم إرهابيو الثورة الصهيووهابية في سورية، هي وشقيقتيها وأمها وأبيها، في بيتها بركن الدين،
ذبحا من الوريد إلى الوريد، مع التكبيرات اللازمة،
لأنها مع الدولة السورية والجيش السوري والشعب السوري، وضد المجرمين الخونة القتلة..

هي مواطنة سورية مثلها مثل عشرات آلاف المواطنين/ات السوريين الذين ذبحهم أولئك الإرهابيون الخونة المجرمون..

ومثلها مثلي، مثلكم، مثلنا جميعا، نحن الذين نعيش اليوم سورية الحقيقية، وقد نلقى المصير نفسه في أي لحظة من هبوط الليل أو صعود النهار،

لكنني سأسأل الآن بعضا ممن يعرف ولاء:
أين ستذهب عيونكم الحولاء وأنتم تنظرون إلى عينيها المذبوحتين،
بينما تسترزقون من دمها بترويجكم لصفة “مسلحي المعارضة” للإرهابيين الخونة الذين ذبحوها؟!

أين ستنفعكم حججكم بالموضوعية والمهنية والإنسانية والوطنية و… وأنتم تصفون هؤلاء المسوخ الشيطانية الخائنة بأحط ما عرفته الإنسانية، تصفونهم بـ”مسلحي المعارضة”؟!

سؤال لا ينتظر جوابا!!

Bassam AlKAdi

August 4th, 2013, 12:30 am


don said:

Jordanian border guards slaughter sheep smuggled from Syria with drugs

AMMONNEWS – The Jordanian border guards deployed at the northern Jordan border region with Syria reportedly slaughter sheep being smuggled by outlaws from Syria, used to smuggle drugs into the kingdom.

Local residents of the town of Amrawa on the Jordanian-Syrian border told UPI that border guards slaughter and then burn the remains of the smuggled sheep for being a health and security hazard.

The residents claimed that Syrian traders smuggle drugs through the sheep into the kingdom by hiding shaving off the lower wool off the sheep, hide quantities of drugs inside, then reattach the wool on the sheep.

August 4th, 2013, 12:37 am


don said:

Syria’s U.N. Ambassador blasts Saudi Arabia, radical Islamists at Dearborn event

Speaking Friday night in Dearborn to more than 400 Arab-Americans, Syria’s Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari blasted the opposition in his country, saying they’re terrorists and religious extremists trying to ruin their peaceful land.

“The same people who attacked you (Americans) on Sept. 11 are attacking us today,” Jaafari said in Arabic.

In his talk, Jaafari repeatedly attacked Saudi Arabia, which he said was funding and arming radical Islamists that want to take over Syria. Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey are supporting “jihadists all through Syria,” he said.

Jaafari, who is Sunni Muslim, spoke alongside Syrian Orthodox Christian Bishop Louka El-Khouri of Syria at an iftar – a dinner held by Muslims to break fast during Ramadan. Called “Iftar for Peace and Unity in Syria,” the event was designed to promote the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and unity among Syria’s different groups. The crowd at the Greenfield Manor in Dearborn was largely Syrian Christian, Alawite, or Lebanese Shia, groups that generally are sympathetic to Assad.

The audience clapped often during the Ambassador’s and Bishop’s remarks at the dinner, which was sponsored by the Syrian-American Forum, based in New Jersey. Several Shia imams and Christian priests attended the event to show their support.

El-Khouri said that Syrians are united despite their religious differences. He also spoke the kidnappings of two Christian leaders that he said were done by Syrian opposition groups.

August 4th, 2013, 12:48 am


don said:

UK govt urged to stop supporting Al-Qaeda-linked groups

At least 1,000 men and women gathered outside 10 Downing Street on Saturday and protested for five hours seeking an end to the secret and open support Britain has been providing to groups in Syria – some of them extremely radical and sectarian – who have been fighting the government of President Bashar Assad. The demonstration was organised by the Anjuman Ghulaman-e-Hazart Abbas (AGHA) Northampton and joined by several community organisations. Protestors chanted slogans demanding protection of the holy shrines and held mourning procession.

Syed Nasir Abbas Jafri demanded why the British government was using the taxpayers’ money to support groups which are opposed to diverse Muslim thoughts as well as the Western country and want to eliminate everyone who doesn’t believe in their ideology. Jafri said that attack on the shrines of the Holey Prophet’s companions and family has sent shock waves across Muslim communities in the world and rocket attacks on the holy shrine of Bibi Zainab (AS) is particularly very worrying because the whole conflict is taking a sectarian shape and that will mean warfare in every Muslim country.

He said that it was Britain’s right to support any political group it wanted for its own aims in the region but supporting terrorist organisations and giving them a free hand to attack other Muslims was akin to encouraging terrorism. He demanded that British government was in touch with extremist groups in Syria and must seek guarantee from them that they will not attack shrines, which are respectable to Muslims from all over the world.

He said that Britain had become home to sectarianism as many mosques in Britain are now dependant on funding from some powerful Middle Eastern countries.

August 4th, 2013, 12:56 am


don said:

Syrian Christian towns emptied by sectarian violence

Towns and villages in Syria that have been home to Christians for hundreds of years are being steadily emptied by sectarian violence and targeted kidnappings.

Tens of thousands Syriac Christians – members of the oldest Christian community in the world – have fled their ancestral provinces of Deir al-Zour and Hasakah in northeastern Syria, residents have said.

Conflict in the area, desperate economic conditions, lawlessness, and persecution by rebel groups born from the perception that Christians support the regime, remain the main reasons for why Christian families are fleeing the area.

The growing presence of radical jihadist groups, including al-Qaeda, has also seen Christians targeted.

“It began as kidnapping for money, but then they started telling me I should worship Allah,” a male Christian resident of Hasakah who was kidnapped by jihadists said.

“I was with five others. We were tied and blindfolded and pushed down on our knees. One of the kidnappers leant so close to my face I could feel his breath. He hissed: ‘Why don’t you become a Muslim? Then you can be free’.”

Another Christian in Hasakah said he knew of “five forced conversions” in recent weeks.

Hasakah and other towns in northeastern Syria have long been one of the main population centres for Christians, who make up approximately 10 per cent of the country’s population. Residents estimate that at least a third of Christians in northeastern Syria have fled, with few expecting to return.

One Hasakah resident who has now escaped the area said: “Rebels said we had to pay money for the revolution. My cousin is a farmer, and wanted to check on his land. I warned him he should take armed security but he refused. A group kidnapped him in the barn of his farm. We had to pay $60,000 [£52,000] for his release. They are milking the Christians”.

A Christian man calling himself Joseph and living in Hasakah said: “The only unprotected group are the Christians. The Arabs had arms coming from Saudi and Qatar, the Kurds had help from Kurdistan. We had no weapons at all.”

Local residents said many Christians had tried to join the rebellion against President Assad, but their efforts were marginalised early on by sectarian minded Sunni rebel groups.

August 4th, 2013, 1:14 am


Alan said:

The U.S. intelligence community has been leaking information on Israeli air strikes in Syria, and U.S. President Barack Obama is behind the leaks, according to a report in the World Tribune.

August 4th, 2013, 3:34 am


Alan said:

بالصور: «الحدث نيوز» تفضح المعارضة السورية.. صفحة الإئتلاف تُدار من «إسرائيل»a

August 4th, 2013, 5:18 am


Mina said:

It is surprising that none of the articles dealing with the problems of the Syrians refugees in Egypt mentions Haytham Maleh.

August 4th, 2013, 6:59 am


majedkhaldoun said:

The gains of the huge amount of missiles in Homs area would not have been done without the anti aircrafts that the FSA has obtained recently, those missiles that FSA has gained are anti tank missiles, they will destroy all the regime tanks in that area,and may help break the seige around Homs,

Further, massive re enforcement by the FSA to Jobar and Qaboon and Barzeh area, meaning there is going to be major fight there.

Mini-Apple statement earlier that the revolution is defeated is either dream statement, or naivety due to believing Assad media which lies all the time

Assad will withdraw in the future to the Nusayri mountain, where the war will last till Assad is killed or flee

August 4th, 2013, 8:42 am


Alan said:

The dirty war against Kurds in Syria

A leader of the Free Syrian Army (FSA), supported by the West and Turkey threatens to destroy the Kurds and declares that the FSA brigades joined Al-Qaeda-linked groups against Kurds with weapons supplied by foreign countries. The brigades which refuse to be part of this war are threatened, while many members of Al-Qaeda continue to enter Syria through Turkey, with the help of pro-government “associations”.

Since July 16 the Kurds have been attacked by jihadist groups, like the al-Nosra and Islamic state in Iraq and the Levant. These groups have suffered heavy losses against Kurdish fighters, since the begun fighting against them. In particular, they were driven out of Rass al-Ain (Serekaniye in Kurdish), on the border with Turkey, losing an important border post where they received weapons and reinforcements. All attempts to regain this position resulted in heavy casualties which included several jihadist leaders.

Unable to advance against the Kurdish fighters, jihadists have begun to loot, kidnap, execute and kill Kurds. At least 70 civilians, mostly women and children, were brutally massacred between 31 July and 1 August, in the small towns of Tall Hassel and Tall Aren in the province of Aleppo. Thousands of people are trapped and threatened with execution and rape in this region, where some 40,000 Kurds live. Many young people have been executed for the sole reason of being Kurds, according to villagers who managed to escape. Hundreds of civilians were abducted. Most of them are women and children.

The FSA brigades which are known to get Western military, diplomatic and financial support are also involved in the massacre. In a video, the head of the military council of the FSA Aleppo province, Abdul Jabar al-Akidi is seen next to another FSA commander and says they will wipe out the Kurds after the meeting which brought together 70 commanders of the “Syrian opposition” in Antep, Turkey, on July 26. Openly declaring the involvement of the FSA brigades in the massacre of Kurdish civilians in Tall Hassel and Tall Aren, he added that the military council took the decision to exclude the front al-Akrad (Kurdish) who refuses to join the jihadists and support al-Qaeda against the Kurds. He asked the head of al-Akrad to surrender its weapons.

Heavy fighting had recently taken place between fighters of the al-Akrad Front and jihadists, especially in the regions of Aleppo and Raqa. Composed of members of all ethnic groups in Syria, al-Akrad has some forty battalions, especially in the areas of Bab Azzaz and Aleppo. It is part of the military council of the “real” Free Syrian Army.

The al-Nusra front and EIIL have also issued a fatwa accusing the FSA brigades of being “traitors” if they do not want to wage war against the Kurds, according to reports from news agency NAHA.

Reacting to the threats by FSA commanders, the general representative of the Kurdish front, Hadji Ahmad Al-Kurdi, told ANF that his brigades will never surrender their weapons. “Nobody gave us these weapons. It is the people we have sworn to defend against repression and massacres of the Baath regime that gave us these weapons. That is why I sent this message to Abdel Jabar al-Akidi who asked us to surrender our weapons: Come and take them, if you are that brave”.

The head of al-Akrad front emphasizes that Western countries need to know which armed bands have received weapons and for what purposes they are used. He describes the actions of these “armed gangs” in the areas of Tall Aran, Tall Hassel, Bab, Mumbic and Jarablus: “These gangs kidnap people in the streets and they disappear. In particular, they kidnap wealthy people and torture them for days asking for a ransom. Nearly 50 people have been kidnapped in the region. These gangs have no revolutionary goal. Their actions are not at all consistent with Islam. Instead, they damage the image of Islam. This is banditry, looting. Since when bandits, thieves and looters have become revolutionaries, I ask?”…………………

August 4th, 2013, 9:35 am


Alan said:

These radical groups thrive on chaos and destabilization and are trying to gain influence by sowing discord among the different components of the Syrian fabric. Attempts are also made to silence progressive Kurdish politicians, the most recent case being Isa Hisso, member of the Supreme Kurdish Council, who was killed in a car bomb 30th july 2013.

August 4th, 2013, 10:52 am


Tara said:

May God curse Bashar and those responsible for this agony.!/image/3137149115.jpg_gen/derivatives/box_475/3137149115.jpg

Image Credit: AFP
A Syrian refugee woman holds her child as they doze off on the sidewalk of a street in the southern Lebanese city of Sidon on July 18, 2013. The exodus of Syrian refugees accelerated dramatically in recent months, with over 1 million refugees arriving in the first five months of 2013 alone.

August 4th, 2013, 10:58 am


Alan said:
Stupid that shows these munitions do not know how to encapsulate, packaged and stored ammunition and how it should be when you grab it!
It’s a diverse anti-armor shipment of Tahmazes dustbin !!! The truck Just arrived to Psalms!
Interesting pink bags! LOOOOOL

August 4th, 2013, 11:22 am


apple_mini said:

No surprise here. FSA has officially become a mercenary force for Turkey by aligning themselves with Al Qaede to declare war against Kurds in Syria.

Who are they kidding with? Ask any SAA guys whether they can differentiate an FSA from any other Islamist fighter. The answer is NO.

Maybe SAA has not got a chance to encounter any of them on battlefield since all those FSA are busy organizing demonstration for media use. They are more photogenic than those Islamists with crooked teeth. Camera just loves them.

August 4th, 2013, 11:31 am


Alan said:

Height of Hubris: US ready to destroy Syrian air forces with 3 ships and 24 drones

ha ha ha !
Idiots touched by the fog of war see only their own moves on the board, fantasize about the possible reactions and are blind to the moves of the opponents of war, of which there are many – unlike any board game, because in such games there is only one opponent to deal with. 🙂

August 4th, 2013, 11:53 am


don said:

Kidnapped Syrian Arcbishops Have Been Held Captive For Over 100 Days

The two sister churches have publicly and in private and continue today to exert every effort at local, regional and global levels. These efforts concentrated on all types of communication with honorable ministers, members of parliament, ambassadors, their holiness patriarchs and their graces archbishops and bishops and extending the communication channels to include the United Nations and many other stakeholders and friends, as the two churches pursued every opportunity that was proposed by the loving friends and left no stone unturned to secure their release which to date has not eventuated.

We note with utmost surprise how small and big states have shown their ignorance when it came to this serious and dangerous event.

Today, on the occasion of the centenary day of this inhumane absence and unethical handling of two Archbishops that represent the love of God and serve the people of every religion and national affiliation, especially humanitarian organizations working in the service of human beings.
The kidnappers have not indicated the whereabouts of the two Archbishops and have not announced their identity and what are their demands or the purpose behind their inhuman act.

We appeal to the international community on various levels and in every place to work with us to facilitate the work of our committee and the friends of the two Archbishop who seek to spread peace and tranquility all over the world, and emphasize that any service provided to this committee is a service to God and humanity, remembering the words of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ: Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God. (Mathew 5:9)

August 4th, 2013, 11:54 am


don said:

BDP calls for rallies in Turkey’s restive frontier town

The Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) was set to organize a demonstration late Aug.4 in the restive Turkish-Syrian border town of Ceylanpınar to support Syrian Kurds attempting to defend themselves against jihadist attacks.

Önder told reporters yesterday that Kurds in Turkey would naturally support their ethnic compatriots in Syria, while adding that it was unnatural to ban such a “democratic” desire.

Ceylanpınar was tense yesterday as a stray bullet fired during clashes in the Syrian town of Ras al-Ayn along the Turkish frontier caused another death.

Ramazan Zeybel, a 43-year-old man and father of 10, was shot in the chest while out shopping ahead of the Ramadan bayram holiday. He was immediately taken to hospital but succumbed to his wounds despite medical intervention.

August 4th, 2013, 12:02 pm


don said:

Medvedev: West acts like ‘bull in china shop’ in Mideast

MOSCOW, Aug. 4 (UPI) — Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Sunday the West’s interference in Syria may “create yet another unstable country.”

Medvedev’s comments came during an interview with Russia Today on Sunday to mark the 5-year anniversary of Georgia launching an attack on the capital of South Ossetia that led to the Russia–Georgia war of 2008.

“Syria is also on the brink of a similar war. Basically, there’s a civil war raging in the country; it’s a disaster,” Medvedev said, comparing the civil war in Syria to the uprising in Libya. “We have always believed that the power to solve Syria’s problems should lie with its people. But the active interference that we now see might potentially lead to the same problems and create yet another unstable country, in a permanent state of civil war.”

When asked whether Western forces sometimes push conflicts in the Middle East to a “point of no return,” or making it difficult to get the warring sides to attempt negotiations, Medvedev said: “Our Western partners sometimes behave like a bull in a china shop — they squeeze in, crush everything and then don’t know what to do next.”

August 4th, 2013, 12:07 pm


don said:

Charity probed after cash seized at Dover

A British charity is being investigated after more than £40,000 was seized by Kent Police from a group of men leaving the country for the Middle East.

The men were believed to be travelling on behalf of Aid Convoy, which provides humanitarian and medical aid to people in the Lebanon/Syria border area.

The Charity Commission said it was assessing Aid Convoy as “part of an ongoing operation”.

Aid Convoy has not replied to a request for a comment.

Kent Police is investigating whether the money was being taken out of the country for illegal purposes, a spokeswoman said.

She confirmed officers seized three sums of cash – £36,066, $10,600 dollars (£7,000), and 1,400 euros (£1,200) – from a group of men at Dover who were on their way to the Middle East.

August 4th, 2013, 12:15 pm


don said:

Syria’s Western Jihadists

Lifting The Veil with Souad Mekhennet: A German-born jihadi—long known to Western intelligence agencies—is rumored to be in Syria along with a number of other “brothers from Europe” battling Assad. Why the West should be concerned.

There’s wide disagreement over the numbers of foreign fighters in Syria. Western intelligence services and analysts believe the numbers of foreign fighters are around 6,000 and 10 percent of them believed to be from Europe, Australia and North America. But Arab intelligence services believe there are at least 15,000 foreign fighters, while jihadists speak of even about 30,000. Most of them are believed to be from Turkey, South East Asia, North Africa, the Middle East and Caucasus.

Not all foreigners who flocked to Syria went with a jihadist agenda. “Some wanted to go and join the Free Syrian Army, but got quickly recruited by the jihadists,” an Arab intelligence official told me. “They know how to recruit.”

A Libyan man whom I met in Turkey, where he was being treated for his wounds, confirmed this.


Unlike most of the meetings I had with members of jihadist groups in the past, this one did not take place in hiding, BUT IN THE DINING ROOM OF A FIVE-STAR HOTEL, where he was staying with some other Libyan friends.

Abu Abderrazak had fought with the al-Nusra Front. In Aleppo, when a rocket hit his group, he lost a leg—but continued coordinating with fighters inside Syria and helping them cross the border via Turkey.

“There are many brothers from Europe who have joined us some of them need more training than us because we learned to fight during the war against Gaddafi. But the brothers are brave,” he said, speaking in a soft voice.

Abu Abderrazak said he had seen several European fighters in a unit near Aleppo but wasn’t aware of their names. However, another man, known to the jihadist scene, said he had heard of the “German brother.”

“Abu Talha al Almani is a very known brother, he is a brave fighter,” said Omar Bakri Muhammad, founder of the banned organization al-Muhajeroon in Britain.

Bakri Muhammad was accused of radicalizing and inciting violence. He is no longer allowed to return to Britain and is now living in Tripoli, North Lebanon.

“The fight is no longer between Syrian opposition and [the] government, now it is between Muslims and kufar [unbelievers],” he told me in a recent conversation.

Is Syria the new El Dorado for jihadist groups? This is what worries intelligence services in Western and Arab countries. As the situation in Syria has turned into a civil war and threatens to further destabilize the entire region, the fight is becoming increasingly sectarian. “This is turning into a nightmare. The mistakes were made from the beginning, when we warned especially the U.S. to be aware that many foreign fighters who had clearly a jihadist agenda were crossing into Syria from Turkey,” an Arab intelligence official said under the condition of anonymity.

August 4th, 2013, 12:35 pm


revenire said:

This so-called revolution is a bloody mess.

August 4th, 2013, 1:23 pm


apple_mini said:

The rebels launched coordinated attacks on rural villages in Lattakia. Many civilian casualties reported.

And this barbarian atrocity cannot be forgiven.

Allah has been watching those demons and its accomplices. Judgment day will not be far away.

August 4th, 2013, 2:11 pm


ghufran said:

Where are the hypocrites who lectured readers on this forum about human rights and the “slaughter” of civilians by Shabiha?
Five villages near Slinfeh (by Latakia) were attacked by Islamist rebels who killed scores of villagers and their families and forced thousands of people to flee on foot in the woods and the valleys in those areas, in one incident, eye witnesses reported seeing armed men who did not speak Arabic rounding up 10 people of all ages and killing them without sparing children and women, it is very likely that terrorists let few people run away alive hoping that they will tell horror stories to others who may be thinking about going back to those villages.
The NC, SOHR and Aksalser, among others, chose the convenience of silence at least for now, we all know why !!
This is how SOHR reported on the attacks:
محافظة اللاذقية-المرصد السوري لحقوق الانسان :: استشهد ما لايقل عن 12 مقاتلا من الكتائب المقاتلة بعضهم من جنسيات غير سورية واصيب العشرات الجراح كما قتل مالايقل عن 19 من القوات النظامية ومسحلين من جيش الدفاع الوطني التابعة لها واصيب العشرات بجراح بعضهم بحالة خطرة وذلك خلال الاشتباكات الدائرة بين مقاتلين من عدة كتائب مقاتلة من طرف والقوات النظامية ومسلحين من جيش الدفاع الوطني من طرف آخر في عدة مناطق بجبل الاكراد بريف اللاذقية حيث بدات هذه الاشتباكات فجر اليوم بهجوم مقاتلين من الكتائب المقاتلة على نقاط تمركز القوات النظامية في المنطقة واستمرت بشكل عنيف لعدة ساعات تبعها معارك كر وفر بين الطرفين واستخدم خلالها قذائف الهاون والمدفعية والدبابات بين الطرفين في حين نفذ الطيران الحربي عدة غارات جوية على مراكز تجمع مقاتلي الكتائب المقاتلة في المنطقة
Notice the absence of any mentioning of civilian victims and how SOHR is calling Islamist terrorists “martyrs”, victims of the Syrian army are usually reported as “killed” by SOHR.

August 4th, 2013, 2:20 pm


zoo said:

Contrary to the opposition going from deception to desillusion from the so called “Friends of Syria” the Syrian government can count on loyal and reliable allies,0,48308.story

Rouhani “stressed the Islamic Republic of Iran’s determination to strengthen its relations with Syria and stand together in the face of all challenges,” SANA news agency said.

“No power in the world can destabilize or undermine the deep-rooted, historic and strategic relations between the two friendly peoples and countries,” it quoted him as telling Syrian Prime Minister Wael al-Halki during his visit to Tehran to attend Rouhani’s swearing-in ceremony.

August 4th, 2013, 2:29 pm


zoo said:

The US congratulate Rohani on his election

US a ‘willing partner’ if Iran serious on nuclear: White House
In taking the oath of office in Tehran Sunday, Rowhani called on the West to engage Iran through dialogue not sanctions
AFP , Sunday 4 Aug 2013

Iran will find the United States a “willing partner” if new President Hassan Rowhani is prepared for serious talks on its nuclear program, the White House said Sunday.

In a message congratulating Rowhani on his inauguration, the White House said it “presents an opportunity for Iran to act quickly to resolve the international community’s deep concerns over Iran’s nuclear program.”

“Should this new government choose to engage substantively and seriously to meet its international obligations and find a peaceful solution to this issue, it will find a willing partner in the United States,” the statement by White House press secretary Jay Carney said.

August 4th, 2013, 2:33 pm


Alan said:

Jihad From Syria To Russia, Military Secrets For Sale, Afghanistan Descends Into Chaos & More!
must read!

August 4th, 2013, 2:33 pm


Uzair8 said:

It’s Laylatul Qadr (Night of Power) tonight. About an hour away in UK.

Keep the struggle for freedom in your prayers.

August 4th, 2013, 2:58 pm


Uzair8 said:

Actually keep the Ummah in your prayers tonight.

August 4th, 2013, 3:01 pm


ghufran said:
Notice the black flag and the people speaking in Turkish.
The military post was later retaken by the army but the troubles with Turkey are not likely to end any time soon, many Syrians are determined to make Turkey pay the price for playing a major role in the Syrian war and for bringing foreign fighters to Syria, and Turkey wants to end Aleppo as a competitor and extends its control over new territories north of Latakia. Turkey will be the last country to sign on any deal that ends the Syrian war.

August 4th, 2013, 3:18 pm


zoo said:

Good luck to Egypt: Ford is coming

Kerry Said to Pick Former Syria Envoy as Ambassador to Egypt
Published: August 4, 2013

WASHINGTON — Secretary of State John Kerry has recommended that Robert S. Ford serve as the next American ambassador to Egypt, American officials said Sunday.

August 4th, 2013, 4:36 pm


Tara said:

The FSA is making use of the arms that the regime slotted to kill children and displace family.  FSA should target Naisa’s place and her son in Qurdaha to boost morals.  Does anyone know where was Maher buried?    
أعلن الجيش السوري الحر اليوم الأحد أنه سيطر على قرى في ريف اللاذقية بالتوازي مع التقدم الذي يحقق
 في حلب, في حين قتل وجرح عشرات السوريين بتجدد القصف

وقال مصدر في قوات المعارضة للجزيرة إنها تمكنت من السيطرة على قرى أبراج بارودة وانباته واستربه والحمبوشية وبلوطا في ريف اللاذقية.

وأضاف أن مقاتلي الجيش الحر اقتحموا أحد مقار القوات النظامية في جبل الأكراد, ودمروا دبابة بصاروخ كونكورس الموجه عن بعد. وفي هذا الإطار, تحدثت شبكة شام عن اشتباكات عنيفة قرب موقع عسكري يطلق عليه “مرصد 45” في جبل التركمان.

ويشهد ريف اللاذقية منذ شهور قتالا متقطعا يرافقه قصف جوي يستهدف أساسا قرى مصيف سلمى  وجبل الأكراد, كما قصفت فصائل سورية مرارا بلدة القرداحة مسقط رأس الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد.

وقال ناشطون إن قوات النظام قصفت بالمدفعية مصيف سلمى بالتزامن مع الاشتباكات الدائرة, وإن الطائرات المروحية التابعة للنظام شاركت في الاشتباكات التي تصاعدت حدتها منذ يومين في ريف اللاذقية.

وقال الناشط الإعلامي سليم العمر للجزيرة إن نحو خمسين من الجنود النظاميين قتلوا في الاشتباكات بريف اللاذقية.
وفي ما يتعلق بالقتال أيضا, قالت شبكة شام إن الجيش الحر دمر عربة مدرعة وقتل كل من فيها بهجوم في حي جوبر بدمشق الذي يشهد معارك مستمرة منذ شهور.

August 4th, 2013, 4:39 pm


zoo said:

Which one will you choose for your next vacation in Syria?

More than 2 years into civil war, Syria effectively split into 3 separate regions

BEIRUT — More than two years into Syria’s civil war, the once highly-centralized authoritarian state has effectively split into three distinct parts, each boasting its own flags, security agencies and judicial system.

In each area, religious, ideological and turf power struggles are under way and battle lines tend to ebb and flow, making it impossible to predict exactly what Syria could look like once the combatants lay down their arms.

The regime holds a firm grip on a corridor running from the southern border with Jordan, through the capital Damascus and up to the Mediterranean coast, where a large portion of the population belongs to President Bashar Assad’s Alawite sect. The rebels, who are primarily drawn from Syria’s Sunni Muslim majority, control a chunk of territory that spans parts of Idlib and Aleppo provinces in the north and stretches along the Euphrates river to the porous Iraqi border in the east. Tucked into the far northeastern corner, meanwhile, Syria’s Kurdish minority enjoys semi-autonomy.

Those contours provide the big picture view. The view from the ground, however, is slightly muddied.

While Sunni rebels control large swathes of Syria’s rural regions in the north, the government still controls provincial capitals there, with the exception of Raqqa city and parts of Aleppo city. The regime also still retains some military bases and checkpoints in the overwhelmingly rebel-held countryside, but those are besieged and isolated and supplies for troops are air-dropped by helicopters or planes.

August 4th, 2013, 4:40 pm


AMEERA said:

يعني اخيرا وصلت النار و الجهاديين لضيع العلوية بالساحل. يلا خففوا شوي عن الشام و حلب لانو الله يلعنهم هالجهاديين ما خلو شارع سني الا جاهدو فيه.

بس هل يجوز مفاخذة و مناكحة الكفار؟ يعني لانون بيعتبرو العلويين كفار

August 4th, 2013, 4:45 pm


Ghufran said:

Syrian tv is now showing the criminals who massacred over 200 police and army officers in Jisr Al-shugour in an incident that signaled the start of a bloody war in the north.
The attack on reef Larakia seems to have failed, one rebel leader was announced dead by local sources :
مقتـل قائـد لـواء التوحيـد فـي ريـف اللاذقيـة الارهابـي “قحطان حاج محمد”
3 of 4 posts that were overrun by rebels have been retaken by army but the fight is far from over, Nusra clearly wanted to bring the gift of Eid to Latakia.

August 4th, 2013, 4:49 pm


AMEERA said:

انا صايبني اكتئاب قوي كتير وما عرفانة كيف بدي لاقي حل لمشكلة الفيزا.

في مكتب سفريات بلبنان قلي انو بئدر يئمن فيزا طالب لامريكا فسؤالي الكم يا سامعين الصوت, اذا زبطت و طلعت على امريكا بفيزة طالب بقدر اقدم لجوء؟ و كيف التقديم؟ وعم ياخدوا سوريين قبول؟

انصحونا يا عرب امريكا

August 4th, 2013, 4:54 pm


apple_mini said:

Ghufran, you are very rational and seem to be a pacifist. Do you have any reasonable suggestion to end the violence? Forget about the peace talk. Both of us know it is not happening any time soon.

The rebels are determined to kill anyone who is not one of them. A man in Jaramana lost five close ones in two days: two relatives in the explosion last week, then another three next day due to mortar shells including a friend for over 20 years.

Syrian rebel fighters will be granted with amnesty if they lay down their weapons and promise never do harm anymore.

If Assad renounces power now, the country will further descend to more violence and chaos.

Watch a clip here:

August 4th, 2013, 5:36 pm


ziad said:

الرئيس الأسد يتشارك الإفطار عشية ليلة القدر مع فعاليات المجتمع السوري.

الرئيس الأسد للفعاليات السورية في إفطار ليلة القدر:

شهر رمضان.. شهر للعبادة وللتربية نطهّر به النفس من الشوائب ونكرس فيه الأخلاق الحميدة ونرمم ما تآكل منها.

شهر رمضان.. شهر للتضحية والفداء والجهاد بالمعنى الصحيح.. جهاد العمل والانجاز والمحبة.

نحن في شهر الخير.. والخير لن يأتينا من أصحاب الفكر الظلامي.

الخير في شهر الخير سيأتي من السوريين المنتمين لوطنهم والملتزمين بدينهم مسلمين ومسيحيين.

الخير سيأتينا من أولئك الأبطال الذين يذودون عن وطنهم، من عائلاتهم الصابرة على غيابهم في ساحات القتال.

August 4th, 2013, 6:36 pm


ziad said:

Syrian soldier memorial in Allentown, Pennsylvania USA where they raised the largest Syrian flag ever in the US

August 4th, 2013, 6:56 pm


Tara said:

 AUGUST 2, 2013

There is something about the passivity of sitting in a concrete basement with only one exit, wondering if the next round of incoming fire will hit you, that is distinctly terrifying. It’s unlike being caught in a firefight, where you can dodge and weave and think that you have some semblance of control over your fate—choosing where to stand, behind what kind of a structure and with whom

August 4th, 2013, 7:51 pm


Ghufran said:

Apple- mini ( why not iPad 🙂 ),
Thx for calling me reasonable, my wife will disagree. Eastern Aleppo is now dominated by Islamists terrorists who predictably hide among civilians, they have been doing this dirty game for over a year:
They attack and kill, then go back and hide, the army bombs their hideouts and, again predictably , civilians get killed and we end up with dozens of YouTube videos showing how brutal the army is.
It is useless now, but useful later, to repeat the fact that the regime is responsible for the situation we see today, it could have taken a different course but it did not.
The opposition, by choice or by force from GCC and Turkey, made a fatal mistake by accepting or inviting islamist terrorists which led to military gains on the ground but at a very high price, and now we can say with confidence that those terrorist ” guests” have taken over and made the FSA irrelevant, what you hear from FSA supporters on the subject is a classic case of guilt and denial, they know the FSA screwed up big time.
There will be no national unity government or a real Geneva 2, there is simply too much hatred and too much blood, that leaves us with two bad outcomes:
A continuous status quo which means further blood shed and destruction, or a military victory by one side, probably the army, but that victory will not be decisive enough to keep Syria in one piece under one government , at least not for the near term.
The lesser of all evils is a situation where Islamist rebels are contained in certain areas, the east and parts of the north, with Damascus , Homs and the coast remain under the army control, unlike my friends who support rebels I believe this is the most likely scenario.
This outcome, as attractive as it can be to some, is not the optional outcome, Syria needs to replace this regime, certainly end Assads and Makhloufs rule, and get rid of Islamist terrorists, these two goals are attainable but they can take years. The inclusion of moderate Syrians who oppose the regime in a future government is key to bring stability and unity to most of Syria but that takes a different leadership, Assad is not able or willing to take that bold step, his supporters will disagree with me.
Finally, the Kurds deserve a high degree of autonomy but not complete independence, their enemy today is Turkey and Nusra. I am cautiously optimistic but I do not believe there will be a quick fix, the sooner Turkey, non Islamist rebels and their supporters understand the new reality the faster peace can be brought to Syria with the exception of Nusra held territories which are doomed for now. I never liked or supported Assad but it is obvious to anybody with half a brain that Nusra is worse than this regime, whether the regime pushed for this unfortunate situation ( Nusra versus Assad) is a matter for debate.
One thing for sure, Israel is sitting pretty for now.

August 4th, 2013, 8:04 pm


ilya said:

Syrian Rebels to Assyrians: Convert to Islam or die.
Al Thawrah, Syria (AINA) — Accounts by Assyrian refugees from al-Thawrah (also known as al-Tabqah) reveal the real face of the Islamist undercurrent within the Syrian opposition. Furthermore, these accounts serve as a stark and chilling reminder of what has already been suffered by non-Muslim communities in Iraq since 2003.

On February 11, rebel fighters from the al-Nusra Front took control of the city and its strategic dam, the largest of its kind in the country. They also seized control of the three quarters that housed dam workers – many of whom were Christian Assyrians. Whilst they allowed the dam’s original staff to remain in the city in order to continue its operation, management and upkeep, those who were not Sunni Muslim were not afforded the same privilege.

“Everything is now in Jabhat al-Nusra’s hands,” complained one Assyrian refugee, “All the Muslims stayed there, but if any Christians want to go back they have to become Muslim or else they will be killed.”

Christians report their property being stolen, their homes being confiscated, and their possessions being sold on the black market in order to buy weapons and ammunition. In many of these cases, those forcefully dispossessed were not even allowed the chance to take with them any of their personal belongings.

According to the jihadist Islamist ideology espoused by such forces as the al-Nusra Front, the properties and possessions of such “infidels” are halal (fair game), and it is not a sin to plunder them.

They also threatened Christians with death if they did not comply with strict Islamic laws. “They would call and text me on my cell phone, ordering me to do as they say, or else they would kill me! Can you imagine it?” said a Christian man from al-Thawrah, who had lost all he owned, and is now internally displaced with his family. “Even though I have left they still call me from there to bother me, so I keep my phone switched off unless I really need to use it.”

The gruesome story (AINA 4-3-2013) of an Assyrian man from al-Hasakah Governorate, allegedly shot by rebels in an execution-style murder just outside al-Thawrah in April 2013, still sends shivers up the spines of those who knew him. He used to earn a living transporting people between al-Hasakah and al-Thawrah, until his car was confiscated by al-Nusra fighters. “They told him that he could buy it back from them, so he returned to his village to bring them the money,” one refugee related, “He should have stayed put and thanked God that they hadn’t killed him then and there, but he didn’t listen to reason and left with the money they’d requested. No one ever saw him alive again. How will his wife and four children support themselves now?”

Whilst this case has been well-documented, many of the Christian refugees from al-Thawrah insisted that certain details be excluded from their testimonies since, being a small community, they were fearful of being identified and subsequently suffering the consequences. They are also too frightened to provide too much information over the phone or on the internet because they believe that these are being monitored by elements within Syria’s opposition.

For most of them, staying in Syria is no longer a viable option either. To leave for Turkey or Lebanon, on the other hand, is also fraught with its own perils. “All the roads are full of rebel fighters,” lamented another Assyrian refugee who refused to disclose his location, “It’s really dangerous. We have lost everything,” said the head of an Assyrian household displaced from al-Thawrah, “There is nothing for us over there now, nothing to return to. We just need help to get out of here and settle in a country that’s safe.”

August 4th, 2013, 8:51 pm


Syrian said:

ملخّص أخبار العدوّ | 4 8 2013

‫#‏اللاذقية‬ على طريق النصر ..
تم اليوم وبفضل الله تعالى تحرير 5 مراصد في ريف اللاذقية، وتطهير 4 قرى واغتنام مدفعين فوزديكا ودبابتين وأحصى المقاتلون أكثر من 100 قتيل وما يزيد على 150 جريحا خلال المعركة والتي ستكون بداية تطهير الساحل
السوري من أتباع النظام الهالك.

كما قُتلت مراسلة قناة المنار راما الحسن في حي باب هود بـ ‫#‏حمص‬ وهي تحاول تلفيق بعض فيديوهات انتصارات زائفة فنالت نصيبها من النصر.

– الانفجارات مستمرة ..
تأكد مقتل أكثر من 15 عنصراً من شبيحة الدفاع الوطني وجرح العشرات جراء انفجار جديد في مستودع الذخيرة في ضاحية الوليد.
أدى هذا الانفجار إلى حالة رعب وهلع وشوهد السكان في المناطق المحيطة للانفجار يركضون بجنون في الشوارع، في حين أصبح حي وادي الذهب المجاور منطقة أشباح بعد الانفجار الهائل الذي أدى إلى تدمير 50% من الحي.

– السرقات مستمرة ..
على صعيد آخر لم يكن من قوات الدفاع الوطني واللجان الشعبية حين رأت النزوح إلا أن تقوم بالأمر الذي احترفته وتدربت عليه من بداية الثورة وهو سرقة المنازل التي هجرها أهلها وهذا ما سجلته صفحة وادي الذهب المؤيدة:
“ضعفاء النفوس وعديمي الشرف وخونة الأرض والعرض اللي سرقو بعض المحلات والبيوت مستغلين خروج الناس من بيوتها .. وبما أنو الدنيا رمضان ونحن بالعشر الأخير وقربت ليلة القدر ..
الله لا يسامحكن وينزل فيكم أشد العقاب والله يشلكن ويعميكن ويمد بعمركن .. “

August 4th, 2013, 10:21 pm


Syrian said:

“Hardly a massacre”is making friends with Captain Hindsight.

August 4th, 2013, 10:32 pm


Uzair8 said:

Rebel momentum has definitely picked up in Ramadan.
There was the video of rebels capturing what appeared to be a significant collection of weapons in Damascus and now there are reports of a major offensive in Latakia:

From AJE blog about 6 hours ago:

Syrian rebels open new frontline in Latakia

Syrian rebels have launched a major offensive on the government stronghold of Latakia.



August 4th, 2013, 10:36 pm


Ghufran said:

Take post 151 and throw it in the nearest garbage basket.
I was waiting for ” Syrian” to say it as is:
His enemy is most syrians and his friends are nusra terrorists.
The coast will indeed be liberated from all foreign fighters, there is no FSA in the area and many terrorists there do not even speak Arabic .

August 4th, 2013, 10:39 pm


Syrian said:

وبلشت اللطيمات على الساحل ، خاصة من الرماديين…

August 4th, 2013, 10:46 pm


majedkhaldoun said:

We will clean the coast and will clean Qurdaha

August 4th, 2013, 10:52 pm


Syrian said:

ان شاء الله

August 4th, 2013, 11:03 pm


Ghufran said:

اللهم انصرنا على أنفسنا حتى نستحق أن تنصرنا على أعدائنا، استجب دعاءنا، واشف مرضانا، وارحم موتانا، وأهلك أعداءنا، ولا تخيب فيك رجاءنا، اختم بالباقيات الصالحات أعمالنا، بلغنا مما يرضيك آمالنا، ولِّ علينا خيارنا، لا تولِّ علينا شرارنا، ارفع مقتك وغضبك عنا، ارفع مقتك وغضبك عنا، ولا تؤاخذنا بما فعل السفهاء منا، لا تسلط علينا بذنوبنا من لا يخافك، ولا يخشاك، ولا يرحمنا، طهر قلوبنا، وأزل عيوبنا، واكشف كروبنا، وتولنا بالحسنى، واجمع لنا خيري الدنيا والآخرة، أصلح أحوالنا، ألّف بين قلوبنا، اختم بالباقيات الصالحات أعمالنا، برحمتك الواسعة اكشف شرّ ما أغمنا وأهمنا، على الإيمان الكامل، والكتاب، والسنة جمعاً توفنا، وأنت راض عنا، اجعل القرآن لنا في الدنيا قريناً، وفي القبر مؤنساً، وعلى الصراط نوراً، وفي القيامة شفيعاً، وإلى الجنة رفيقاً، ومن النار ستراً وحجاباً، ومن النار ستراً وحجاباً، وإلى الخيرات دليلاً وإماماً، بفضلك وكرمك يا أرحم الراحمين.

August 4th, 2013, 11:51 pm


zoo said:


It took 100,000 death, millions of refugees, and billions of destruction to reach the conclusion that the opposition is a failure. In 3 years of killings there has been no emergence of a single worthwhile leader. They are getting weaker and more irrelevant by the day.
It has become clear to most Syrians and Western countries as well that that the only alternative to a clever and popular ‘dictator’ is a stupid, dangerous, and unpopular Al Nusra commander. The hopes of a ‘moderate’ wing taking over the control of the country have faded away a long time ago.
The war now is between Bashar Al Assad’s government and Al Nusra commandment. That was clearly Bashar Al Assad’s last speech on TV.
A ruthless and decisive war.

Of course the opposition will blame it on the Baath party that has ’emasculated’ them all these years, on the West that did not fulfill its promises etc… Well , if they have no balls to make a successful revolution with only Syrians then they might as well keep their US, German and French nationalities and teach at universities on how to fail a revolution. That’s what they will end up by doing.

August 4th, 2013, 11:59 pm


Ghufran said:

Ariha in idleb is following tal Kalakh example by reaching an agreement that allows rebels to leave:
1- إعطاء مهلة للمسلحين للخروج من المدينة تبدأ من الساعة الثامنة مساء وحتى الثامنة صباحا.
2- تفكيك الالغام والعبوات الناسفة التي زرعت في المدينة و إعطاء احداثيات الالغام التي يصعب تفكيكها .
3- دخول الجيش السوري مصحوبا بجيش الدفاع الوطني بشكل آمن ويقوم بتأمين المدينة ويضع المدينة عهدة بيد أبناءها من المتطوعين بجيش الدفاع ,
This means that the army and mukhabarat stays out of city limit.
Islamists refused to endorse similar agreements in other areas.
I do not disagree, but I hope that Syria will one day, sooner than later, manages to build a third option, both Islamists and Baathists ( Assads at the top) models have failed.

August 5th, 2013, 12:01 am


ziad said:

What are your chances if you’re a Syrian citizen now?

Capture, bombing, loss of your children and country: these are the terrors that make the Geneva talks more urgent than ever

Who, in McCain’s words, predicted Assad’s fall? Secretary of state Hillary Clinton repeatedly forecast and demanded his overthrow, making it a precondition for negotiations. Clinton’s policy failed. Assad’s forces were doing better than the rebels. Her successor, John Kerry, changed tack and went to the Russians – who are supplying Assad with his best munitions – to propose that each side bring its clients to the table. That the US could have done that before more than 80,000 Syrians died is obvious. A conference in Geneva is nonetheless a chance, however slim, of peace, given that neither side has the strength to vanquish the other.

On 7 May the US and Russia called for a conference in Geneva. Russia delivered Assad, who told al-Manar TV on 30 May: “We will formally go to the (Geneva) conference as legitimate representatives of our people.” Until then, he had rejected dialogue with “terrorists”. The US has not brought the opposition to the table, despite a week of haggling in Istanbul that one diplomat described, off the record, as a “circus”.

George Sabra, the Syrian National Coalition’s interim president, said in Istanbul on 30 May: “Diplomatic solutions are a farce, meaningless. The Syrian National Coalition will not take part in any conference until the regime stops killing Syrians.” If the SNC, itself a creation of American diplomacy, does not attend, there can be no conference. No conference, no peace.

August 5th, 2013, 12:10 am


Ghufran said:

This is how Islamists use children in Egypt, this report came after the MB sent kids to Rabi’aa Al-Adawiya wearing Kafans ( as future martyrs):
تمكّنت أجهزة مديرية أمن محافظة القليوبية المصرية من ضبط سيارتي ميكروباص على متنهما 42 طفلاً في الطريق إلى موقع اعتصام الإخوان المسلمين بميدان رابعة العدوية بحي مدينة نصر (شرق القاهرة).
وأكد مصدر أمنى مسؤول بوزارة الداخلية المصرية توافر معلومات للجهات الأمنية المعنية بقيام عدد من سائقي سيارات الميكروباص بالتردد على عدد من المناطق الشعبية وجمع الأطفال ونقلهم لمقر الاعتصام، نقلاً عن صحيفة “اليوم السابع” المصرية.
وأكد المصدر في بيان رسمي صادر عن وزارة الداخلية أنه من خلال الفحص تبين أن القائم على عمليات جمع الأطفال وإغوائهم يدعى أحمد يوسف صادق، ويبلغ من العمر 31 عاماً، ويعمل مدرساً بجمعية تحفيظ القرآن بمركز شرطة أطفيح بمحافظة الجيزة.
واعترف المدرس بدوره في تجميع الأطفال واصطحابهم بسيارات خاصة إلى اعتصام رابعة العدوية نظير وعده لهم بشراء ملابس جديدة للعيد، مشيراً إلى أن هؤلاء الأطفال من منطقة شبرا الخيمة بالقاهرة.
وبدورهم، أكد الأطفال الأقوال التي اعترف بها المتهم، وتم عرض الواقعة على النيابة العامة التي باشرت التحقيقات.
Those kids are supposed to be playing not acting as human shields and propaganda tools.

August 5th, 2013, 12:14 am


zoo said:


The chances of a third option are very slim and may take decades. All Arab spring countries are struggling with the same dilemma: As the Islamists are totalitarian, there is no dialog possible with them. They want full power or will go underground.
Egypt is worth observing as to what kind of deal the Salafista, the MB and the army representing the liberals will be able to reach.
I seriously doubt they will ever. Yet even if they reach some kind of compromise it won’t have any impact on Syria, as in Syria the Islamists have no political representation, they are only military and there is no chance at all that a deal can be done between the SAA and Al Nusra

In Syria the outcome cannot be political anymore, it will be exclusively military and it is the anti-islamists ( the SAA and the Kurds) war against the Islamist brigades that will decide the future of Syria.
What I hope and I think many Western countries are hoping for is that the FSA, that is weak and sidelined, makes a courageous deal with the SAA and the Kurds to join the fight against the Islamists with the agreement of a future participation in the new Syrian government.

It may take long, but I think that ultimately that’s what will happen with the emergence of a military based government.

August 5th, 2013, 12:49 am


ziad said:

French Diplomacy in Syria is an Abject Failure
The third meeting of the Friends of the Syrian people in July in Paris, in the presence of Laurent Fabius and François Hollande. France was at the initiative of creating this group.

The agreement between Moscow and Washington to convene an international conference marginalizes the action of France, which is the departure of Bashar al-Assad a top priority.

In this crisis, France wanted to play the role of the arbitrator. One expert described the Syrian dossier is going in opposite direction to the French diplomacy, as the two major protagonist States the U.S. and Russia, now seem determined to act in concert. The challenge is to turn the page of an abomination that in two years has more than 70,000 dead, hundreds of thousands injured and millions of displaced persons and refugees.

No to Weapons and no to use the ICC

Too little? Too late? Paradoxically, Paris, which now lags behind other nations, was initially at the forefront on the Syrian issue. But France has not always acted proactively, and did not establish contacts with the right people. France fed ambiguities and was accompanied by a lack of clarity. Another expert said that “never our interests and the strategic implications of our decisions were clearly defined and their results evaluated.”

August 5th, 2013, 12:57 am


ghufran said:

“What I hope and I think many Western countries are hoping for is that the FSA, that is weak and sidelined, makes a courageous deal with the SAA and the Kurds to join the fight against the Islamists with the agreement of a future participation in the new Syrian government”
That looks like a third force to me, zoo
a hybrid government that does not exclude moderates from all sides. I agree that political islam when married to violence is a threat to any nation, not just Syria, I also agree that neither the regime nor Nusra are interested in talking to each other. Keep in mind that any future agreement to end the war must address the grievances of people who were sidelined if such an agreement is likely to last. Bandar’s visit to Russia was a slap in the face of the MB and Nusra, it seems to me that nobody including KSA wants the Nusra thugs to win, I am still unsure where Erdugang fits into all of this, without closing Syrian-Turkish borders in the face of foreign jihadists this war can last for decades.
Assad and his family should not expect Syrians to allow them to stay in power much longer just because they are better than Nusra, a country of 25 million is fully able to come up with a new leadership. If Assad stays, even if he wins militarily, he will not be a uniting leader and will only serve as an excuse for the West and others to continue their awful sanctions, his supporters see him as a king in a republic, I do not think Syrians want him to stay beyond 2014 and they certainly do not want a king.

August 5th, 2013, 1:26 am


don said:

Syrian President calls for dialogue as clashes continue

DAMASCUS, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) — Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on Sunday called for a transparent dialogue between the Syrians, as clashes continued between armed rebels and government troops.

Earlier in the day, the pro-government Sham FM radio said that armed rebels in large numbers attacked three villages in the countryside of Latakia, killing at least five Syrian soldiers.

The rebels focused their offensive between al-Haffeh and Slinfe towns, the report said, adding that violent clashes also erupted on several other fronts between the rebels and government troops in the province.

Citing medical sources, the radio said tens of civilians were hospitalized, including children, and there were unconfirmed reports about civilian hostages in the hands of the rebels.

The attack against Latakia came to cover for the rebels’ losses in the central province of Homs, where the Syrian troops stripped the rebels of two major areas over the past month — al- Qussair and al-Khalidieh.

President Bashar al-Assad lashed out at the Syrian opposition groups, mostly the one in exile, accusing it of not wanting a political solution.

Assad made the remarks during an iftar banquet held in the capital Damascus with the participation of a number of society groups and key ministers of his government.

Assad said his country needed a transparent dialogue between the Syrians, stressing that no one but the Syrian people were capable of finding a solution to the 28-month-old crisis.

“The overseas opposition does not even represent themselves … they represent the countries that support them,” Assad said, adding that his administration has agreed to take part in the Geneva conference despite the fact that the opposition has no real representation.

“If we want to get out of the crisis, there should be no exception to any means that could help us,” he noted.

August 5th, 2013, 1:39 am



When d-p athad calls for “peoples’ war”, it tries to look like great leaders such as Ho Chi Minh and Mao Ze Dong. The fool doesn’t even recognize that at best it qualifies to be Hoof Tfoo Dung.

August 5th, 2013, 2:48 am



Assad II King of State Terrorism has won the war against Syria’s populations.

Congratulations to all who contributed to the Machaiveli victory from US, to Britain, Popes, Russia, Iran, Israel and UN.

Thanks for reducing the humanity in the Middle East to the level of excrements.

History will remember you.

August 5th, 2013, 3:03 am



Syria has gone back 100 years in time and now Israel will be very thankful to Assad, Iran and Hezb Zballa for the services. The people’s aspirations have been crushed, their lands stolen, their families destroyed and the glory goes to Iran and Assad. Thanks once again for the role of the NATO, US, EU, UNO, etc.

August 5th, 2013, 3:50 am


habib said:

When the Syrian government inevitably wins, how will the west look back at this? They’ve helped weaken the last bastion for stability and relatively peaceful coexistence between minorities in the Middle East, and they’ve strengthened worldwide Salafism.

Was it really worth it? Just to weaken Iran? The day Salafists stage a “peaceful revolution” in Europe, we can just say “told you so”.

August 5th, 2013, 5:17 am



HABIB You are blind. US and Israel are opening to Iran the corridor to the Mediterranean through Irak, Syria and Lebanon with the agreement of Moscow.

Of course the West is responsible for keeping Assad in power, and of course the West will proclaim Assad is despicable. All western populations will look at Assad regime as a piece of excrement from now on. And will believe the Assad story that peasants are Al Qaeda members.

So forget any western tourist group coming to Syria in the next 10 to 20 years at least.

August 5th, 2013, 5:56 am



I would love to come back to Syria one day but I know I will see roadside cars bombs exploding near Assad-Iranian forces patrolling the wild Al Qaeda areas. Instead I would like to see graffitis in Damascus, Aleppo, Daraa, Homs, Hama, Raqqa expressing the popular feeling of a dream that was not possible due to United States, Europe and Russia legendary hipocresy:


August 5th, 2013, 6:01 am


zoo said:


“a country of 25 million is fully able to come up with a new leadership.”

The last 3 years have proven than ‘coming up’ with a new and acceptable leadership in Syria may be a wishful thinking within the next few years.
Bashar Al Assad is the heir of decades of Baath ruling and has established a strong and cohesive power system. The proof is the resilience of all the the institutions despite the geographical turmoil.
I have yet to see ‘strong’ and independent political or military personalities in Syria that could destroy it and rebuild a system from scratch. I don’t see any Syrian Khomeini at the horizon to rebuild a nation. The West has become well aware that institutions should not be destroyed but ‘overhauled’ . The Army is the most important of them and it is fully dedicated to the present Syrian leadership. Therefore preserving the army may implies having to preserve the whole intricated system
In my view Bashar is the only one who can overhaul the system from within. He is the one who knows it best. I know that his opponents prefer the void than having him in power for the next few years, but if institutions must be preserved there is no other solution.

As the ‘revolution’ has shifted to a ‘war on terror’, if the army succeeds in getting rid of al Nusra and other Islamists , Bashar al Assad will be considered as a hero by the Syrians who suffered from them and by the West, keen of eliminating a potential threast to its ‘protege’ Israel and Jordan. The West has been spending a decade trying to ‘cleanup’ Afghanistan from the same virus and has yet to succeed. There is nothing like a military success against invaders to make people forget the excesses and hail any authoritarian regime as a hero. That’s how the Iraq-Iran war has consolidated the emerging Islamic republic, despite all its opponents who finally went to exile.
Therefore today all is played on the battle field. If the SAA army looses to the Islamists, Syria will become a new Afghanistan with instability that will last decades. if it wins Bashar Al Assad’ popularity will be boosted and he will stay in power.
That’s one major reason that the West does not want anymore to weaken the SAA by supplying weapons to the FSA that may end up in the Islamists hands. They are watching the battle field, confused in what they are hoping for.

August 5th, 2013, 8:16 am


Observer said:

First the pro regime supporter who just finished shopping at Zara proposes that the rebels lay down their arms and there will be an amnesty, then Assad should stay lest the country goes further into chaos.

I guess there will also be an amnesty to all the crimes against humanity that the regime has been perpetrating for more than 45 years.

I also guess that the current “stability” in Syria is of course due to the great leadership of this retard right?

I do not know in which universe the Zara shoppers live in. It is clear that the pro regime folks are drunk with the fact that they just made out of their dung heated homes into Zara shopping and look at the millions of poor fellow Syrians as worms and insects as the former leaders of Romania used to call their citizens.

Also Zoonir is now telling us that Syria has split into three areas according to the WaPo. Well that is good indeed for like Iraq it is an artificial entity run by a mafia clan with nothing but criminal methods of ruling.

The latest decree is to ban and punish any interaction and transaction that excludes the Syrian pound. How pray tell me is he going to enforce it?

Let me guess: barrel bombs, Thcuds, LIjan Shabieh, Air Forth Intelligence, the German wheel of torture, the back breaking Korean chair, or perhaps chemical weapons.

Today as every day I started with Alalam and Manar and Cham Press and Mayadeen and RT and the news are not good. Oh my oh my, there are reports on all those news outlets on the barbaric killing of a pro regime family in Rukn Al Din, the massacre of Khan Al Asl, the bombing of Noubol and Zahra, the villages of Latakia being driven into refugee camps, and worst of all they report the snipers killing children.

Foreign fighters are flocking in and are fighting using the most horrendous methods and we even have the beating of a religious figure on Alalam by these Takfiris.

Well too bad, what goes around comes around. 45 years of education in the classrooms of the regime in torture, killing, hatred, sectarianism, corruption, graft, arbitrary laws, vengeance, and exclusion and yes Zoonir totalitarianism will get you this kind of response.

I am terribly sorry to say: you ain’t seen nothing yet.

iPad retard, I listened today on Ikhbaria the speech he pronounced on the Iftar, and we have the Zara shopper delusional that he is a source of stability.

August 5th, 2013, 8:24 am


revenire said:

I am very happy President Assad said the Syria crisis will be settled on the battlefield. It was something I’ve waited to hear from him for a long time.

August 5th, 2013, 8:28 am


zoo said:

Stay Out Of Syria To Avoid Turning War Into Another Federally Funded Entitlement

Obama administration policy toward Syria is a slow train wreck. Unremitting pressure from war-minded elites is pushing President Barack Obama closer to military intervention in the bloody civil war. Yet getting involved would be a fool’s errand.
Instead, the U.S. should follow a policy of peace. On very rare occasions war is necessary. However, none of America’s recent interventions—other than the initial ouster of the Taliban in Afghanistan—involved any degree of necessity. Most were frivolous, foolish, or both. The conflict in Syria is a human tragedy, but there is no security interest at stake for Americans who would do the paying and especially the dying from intervening.

The expectations of Syria’s opposition are another reason to stay out. People around the world increasingly appear to view U.S. military intervention as some kind of entitlement. In Syria, it seems, they feel free to threaten Americans if Washington chooses not to risk its own citizens in combat.

Washington should reeducate the rest of the world about the purpose of the U.S. military. It is to protect Americans, not remake the globe

August 5th, 2013, 8:32 am


zoo said:

The Egyptians took a year to understand that ‘ballot box’ is only one small element of a democratical system. If it is not followed immediately by institutions that share power with all the components of the society, it is worthless and need to be cancelled. That’s what they did.

This is not to say that the military coup in Egypt is justified. I only want to suggest that Islamists’ understanding of democracy seems to be limited to the “ballot box” and their concern for political legitimacy is limited to majoritarianism. The result has been the lack of recognition of differences and dissent, an ability to value freedoms and the de facto exclusion of non-party supporters. In our part of the world, these pillars of democracy, or lack thereof, are just thought to be Western whims and trivialities which have nothing to do with “governability.” Islamists proved no better than their predecessors in this respect, and that is why they turned out to be no better, if not worse. I think this is the reason behind the “governability crisis” that both countries have faced in different ways. I also think that it is key to understanding the reasons behind the failure of Turkey’s experience, which was assumed to be a model for the combination of Islam and democracy, and the dramatic fall of MB rule in Egypt, which was assumed to be the star case of democracy under moderate Islamists. It should also be thought to be key to a debate on the future of prospects for democracy in the region.

August 5th, 2013, 8:44 am


zoo said:

Turkey hid behind the EU to implement their ‘democratic’ system then when they got enough economical power, quietly moved to the islamization phase. Egypt had no one to hide behind and jumped too hastily in the islamization phase.

For some, the problem in Egypt was a product of haste and inexperienced impositions of the Muslim Brotherhood on the rest of the society, including the military, judiciary, academia and of course secularists. Should the Muslim Brotherhood have had a European Union project like Turkey and Egyptian Islamists been clever enough to hide themselves behind EU objectives, things would have developed perhaps in a different and promising course. Did not the Turkish Islamists do that? Did not they hide behind EU criteria, demands and wishes for almost first four years in governance? Only after then and even after that in stages they put into implementation their agenda of raising a new vengeful and religious society.

August 5th, 2013, 8:51 am


don said:

Elliot Abrams is one of the co-architects if not the sole architect of the destruction of Syria wants to salvage his miserable agenda with an intervention

Testimony to House Armed Services Committee: More Must Be Done in Syria

Witnesses at the hearing included Mr. Elliot Abrams, a senior fellow for Middle Eastern Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations; Ambassador Frederic C. Hof, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East; and Ms. Mona Yacoubian, a project director at the Pathways to Progress division at the Stimson Center.

Mr. Abrams concluded that if the al-Assad regime won, it would be a win for Tehran. Further, Tehran’s interests are obviously very different than Washington’s. He advocated that the U.S. can and should do much to affect the outcome in Syria. He also posited that a ‘win’ for the U.S. would not only reduce Iranian influence, but also curb Hezbollah’s capability.

Mr. Abrams strongly pushed for limited military options. Primarily, he called for an air strike targeting Assad’s aerial assets. He argued that if Israel’s Air Force had successfully attacked targets in Syria, so could the U.S. Air Force.

Amb. Hof identified Russia as a key obstacle to a peaceful, post-Assad regime. He said the U.S. must tell Russia it would act if Moscow does not help to stop the Assad regime’s mass terror operations against vulnerable populations. Amb. Hof solutions were not as overtly hawkish as Mr. Abrams, but he did say that after exhausting all diplomatic tools, military intervention should be considered. He said U.S. unilateralism should be avoided and a no-fly zone would not help the situation. Amb. Hof identified artillery as the greatest tool of destruction in Assad’s arsenal.

Ms. Yacoubian identified the geopolitical situation on the ground in her opening statements. She said that the Syrian military has been able to consolidate its efforts while the Syrian rebels have yet to coalesce and lack unified command and control structures. Even worse, she reported that rebel groups are starting to turn their weapons on one another. This ugly combination, she said, “creates a protracted military struggle where neither the regime nor rebels will be victorious anytime soon.” Ms. Yacoubian flatly stated that a military solution in not the answer, at this point, and only political options could be viable solutions.

August 5th, 2013, 9:18 am


mjabali said:

Alawis are getting massacred in their villages north of Lattakia by the Sunnis today.

Just watched al-Arabiyah and their segment about the north of Lattakia. The most important thing is that there is an indication from this segment that many Alawis (civilians-non combatants) had been massacred in their villages that were overran by thousands of fighters (mostly international jihadis).

The Alawis had been getting massacred in their villages for a long time.

Turkey had let thousands of international criminals cross into Syria. If there is an international court, and there will be one day for sure, Turkey and those who gave weapons to these criminals should stand trial.

What is taking place in north Lattakia is nothing but foreigners killing Alawite Syrians under the name of Islam with the help of many governments.

This genocide is happening in front of the eyes of the world and it is well documented. This is the same line of massacres happening to another Middle Eastern minority.

August 5th, 2013, 9:39 am


habib said:


Lol, I never understood this “Iran/Israel/US secret alliance” conspiracy theory.

Look. Only Sunni states and organisations have direct ties with the US and are getting funded by them. This is a simple fact which negates every inept musings “Sandro” and his ilk can come up with.

Why is this, Sandro? Are they wasting millions on Sunnis to hide the “real” alliance?

August 5th, 2013, 10:11 am


omen said:

182. habib: Only Sunni states and organisations have direct ties with the US and are getting funded by them.

that’s not true. the us is helping to prop up the lebanese & iraqi army.

August 5th, 2013, 10:15 am


omen said:

180. mjabali said: Just watched al-Arabiyah and their segment about the north of Lattakia. The most important thing is that there is an indication from this segment that many Alawis (civilians-non combatants) had been massacred in their villages that were overran by thousands of fighters (mostly international jihadis).

show us the money. where are the images of dead civilians?

August 5th, 2013, 10:20 am


omen said:

what religion allows this??

sooo typical. world media falls over itself mocking a fake fatwa against pastry while ignoring the regime sanctioning the butchering of children.


it seems the Alawiite scholar who gave fatwaa to slaughter kids & women in Banyas is in hand of Mujahdeen.

August 5th, 2013, 10:26 am




We cannot verify your news about Lattakia. But it sounds nothing compared to what the Assad alawi and Iranian Hezballah zombies did to many syrian villages and whole towns.

Let Lattakia Region populations learn what they did to Syria.

Only looking any “arsa”-looking guy from the coast makes me vommit. They will finally get what they deserve after all they did for long decades in Damascus. Maybe not now but in the next revolution or regional earthquake.

August 5th, 2013, 10:50 am


apple_mini said:

After the war is over, the Syrian government needs to keep a comprehensive records of those Syrian expats who have been actively involving anti-government violence even though they are probably not involved in direct terrorist acts. Those people cause indirect human suffering and property damage.

If those expats come back to visit Syria, they are subject to hefty fine.

Nowadays there are many channels to track their activities via social media. They need to be penalized and make financial compensation for people who have suffered in Syria.

August 5th, 2013, 10:58 am


omen said:

sure apple, penalize expats…while YOU GIVE CHILD KILLERS A FREE RIDE!!!

August 5th, 2013, 11:08 am


omen said:

regime trucks hauling dead bodies to a mass grave:

August 5th, 2013, 11:30 am


omen said:

accompanying report:

04-08-2013: The Syrian Human Rights League (SHRL) has reported that around 5,000 inmates from the regime’s infamous Adra Prison in the northeast outskirts of Damascus have been buried in one mass grave in the area around a regime military base in Al Qutaifah in the Qalamoun region of Damascus province following summary execution by regime ‘security’ forces . This is one of a number of such mass graves, the group states.

August 5th, 2013, 11:33 am


apple_mini said:

It has become the pattern now: When the opposition feel defeated or desperate, they resort on personal attack and insult.

I think When Assad said only iron hands can crush the terrorists, implicitly he also imply those moronic and narrow-minded ideas will get swept away.

August 5th, 2013, 11:39 am


mjabali said:

Sandro Low:

Let me make it simple for you, apparently, since you are super angry, you can not see what the hell is going on:

When few thousands of those Foreign Jihadis attack villages at dawn forcing the population to flee and a violent reaction from al-Assad we have a huge problem. No matter what side you are on, if you are a Syrian : We have a problem.

Your quest for revenge is your business, but as for Syria as a country, and those villagers to live and stay in their homes, please leave them alone.

August 5th, 2013, 11:53 am


mjabali said:

Revenge is not going to solve the problem. This is proven, no matter how much you scream and kick. Two years and this revenge mentality did not bring anything to Syria but blood and violence. I do not stand for this. You do.

Revenge with the help of the foreign Jihadis is not going to help the case also.

You want revenge. You always stated this over and over.

Attacking villages at dawn is the type of revenge you want…If al-Assad and his army is wrong you want to be wrong also….

You supporting foreign Jihadis coming to Alawite villages killing them makes me wonder about when are you going to join them?

August 5th, 2013, 11:54 am


omen said:


apple, cry me a fn river. where did i insult you? by highlighting your misplaced priorities and your refusal to hold the regime accountable?

moronic & narrow minded ideas? like objecting to child killers and mass graves?

how about a glimmer of humanity and denounce these crimes? instead of cleaving to your “pity me i’m a victim” narrative that only serves to deflect attention away from the material i’m posting.

please wake up out of this denial.

August 5th, 2013, 11:56 am


Uzair8 said:

AJE blog has been reporting a major rebel offensive on Latakia in recent days.

This offensive will give the regime something to think about. It may also ease pressure on Homs and elsewhere.

Assad declares certainty of Victory just as rebels move on to regime heartlands (Latakia).

The regime can’t be everywhere in required numbers as it lacks the manpower. Such rebel offensives will only expose this reality.

Assad thinks he can talk himself to victory. Only if the opposition and the world swallow the (deliberately designed and exaggerrated) narrative.

August 5th, 2013, 12:03 pm


Uzair8 said:

The last week or so, or maybe longer, frequently it has taken me several attempt to post a comment. End up with a page telling me:

“HTTP 405 Method Not Allowed”

Is anyone else having the same problem?

Anyway I’ve learnt to copy a comment before posting although I do forget sometimes and have to re-write which can be annoying.

August 5th, 2013, 12:10 pm


omen said:

192. mjabali, you lecture against revenge because you endorse only one side be allowed to kill the other.

August 5th, 2013, 12:21 pm


omen said:

Revenge with the help of the foreign Jihadis is not going to help the case also.

i agree. assad needs to stop importing foreign fighters, wave his hand and magically turn them into syrians:

Saudi Al Watan newspaper quoted its sources in the Syrian opposition as saying that “the authorities of Damascus have been granting Lebanese Hezbollah members and Iraqi militia Shiites the Syrian nationality , and has been registering them as residents of the city of Sweida, which is predominantly Druze.Sweida is known as the largest city in Jabal al-Arab, known as the “cradle of the Great Revolution” in the face of the French occupation led by Sultan Pasha al-Atrash in 1925.

assad cheapens your nationalistic pride.

August 5th, 2013, 12:31 pm




You seem not to identify the origin of the problem we face. Assad dictatorship unable to asume that it was time for change:

1) First in 2000-2001 imprisoned all political leader that lead demands for change burying any changce for political development.

2) When people invaded the streets asking for freedom, dignity and change they got bulleted, detained and torutred by thousands.

3) Armed the peasants and rural populations (through HA arm dealers) so Assad could face militarily the “terrorists” that had been being bulleted and bombed.

Assad is a criminal and must be finished sooner or later. You seem not to understand that there is not turning point and that hate is very high, impossible to control. Assad and his iranian and alawite sectarian guard can kill all syrians but the problem will remain and Assad will be a pariah in the world. It is up on Assad to decide.

August 5th, 2013, 12:32 pm




It is not a question of revenge. It is just a question of ending Assad before Syria is destroyed into pieces to serve the alawites, the kurds and the israelis.

Assad is just trying to save himself by remaining in power and selling Syria, or its remains, to Iran and Russia.

Assad and all he represents, with all supporters and fans must be ended before it is too late. If now it is already too late then say goodbye to Syria, no need to lose more time. Assad will pass to history as the stupid uncultivated son who inherited and destroyed Syria, ….

Because Assad has no real studies – he was not really studying in London and got no degree there – , he is ignorant about politics and about all issues affects Syria. He is the typical high class Damascus Boy who cares a Shixxxt what’s happening in the countryside, in the fields, in the palestinian camps, in the poor areas of Damascus, Aleppo and all Syria. He even hates anything that is called “‘arab” or “muslim”. He is the God of the alawites with zero efforts.

August 5th, 2013, 1:31 pm


don said:

Obama the butt joke of late night comedians

President Barack Obama, the joke’s on you

A study of gags by late-night comics during the first half of the year found an abrupt change from 2012. Now Obama and Democrats are providing the lion’s share of punch lines. Obama was the target of 288 monologue jokes made by Jay Leno, David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Craig Ferguson and Jimmy Kimmel, according to an analysis that was released Monday by the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University.

August 5th, 2013, 1:55 pm


Tara said:

So Mowaffaq al-Ghazal, the infamous sheik that is responsible for issuing a fatwa approving the slaughtering the woman and children in Banias massacre is in the hand of rebels.  Is he going to be beheaded?  If truly responsible, some would argue that beheading him is the least the rebels can do to deliver his punishment.  

Is it a coincidence he was arrested after Lailat al Qadr?

الله يمهل ولا يهمل 


August 5th, 2013, 2:10 pm


Tara said:

I should have added the* Alawi *sheik that fatwa-ed the slaughter of the Sunni women and children.

Too bad I can’t edit using iPad.

August 5th, 2013, 2:14 pm


Tara said:


For s non-Muslim and non-Arab to have all this humanity towards the oppressed Syrians is beyond the humanity norm. You are priceless. Thank you.

August 5th, 2013, 2:31 pm


Uzair8 said:

Something to keep an eye on…

Apparently the rebels have captured 5 apparently Alawite villages (though I read somewhere the regime may have recaptured one). It’ll be interesting to see how the regime goes about ‘liberating’ these areas. Will it carpet bomb these areas from the air and by intense artillery like it usually does (and has been doing recently in Homs and elsehere) or will it respond differently.

August 5th, 2013, 2:34 pm


ilya said:

Anne Barnard ‏@ABarnardNYT 2 Aug
@samdagher hears new nuance in Banias story: fleeing rebels killed pro-govt imam, wife, son before govt massacre

August 5th, 2013, 2:40 pm


Uzair8 said:

I have to agree with Tara about Omen.

Omen’s response to Apple-Mini @193 was brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. Tearing their stance to shreds. I felt exhilaration at the time of reading it and wanted to show my appreciation but didn’t.

It’s a response worth saving and sharing elsewhere to expose the immoral and contradictory stance of the regimists.

Well done Sir! Keep up the good work.

Well done to everyone else who, we take for granted on here, are admirably keeping aloft the banner of truth, justice and humanity in the face of lies, falsehood and fabrications.

August 5th, 2013, 2:50 pm


mjabali said:


You are lying and has no clue about what is going on as obvious.

First the Sheikh they captured and killed is Badr Ghazal. He has nothing to do with any Fatwas.

The one you are talking about Muwafaq Ghazal also issued no Fatwa about Banyas, his crime was sitting next to Ali Kayali when Ali Kayali was talking about Banyas. He did not open his mouth in that video. The Fatwas thing is an invention of the opposition to demonize and connect any Alawi Sheikh to what al-Assad does and did.

August 5th, 2013, 2:59 pm


mjabali said:

Uzair the shredder:

Dude: the Ummah concept of yours is dangerous to Syria, can’t you see it?

Your concern for Syria is dangerous for the Syrians…when people who espouse the same ideas as you come to Syria they have nothing but death to its original population.

Uzair: Your Ummah concept is no good fit for Syria.

Syrians who deal with you are conspiring against their own country.

August 5th, 2013, 3:06 pm


Uzair8 said:


This isn’t about the Ummah. If the people of Syria were christians, jews or any other religion I couldn’t stand by and show indifference. You cannot stand by and watch such horror unfold and do nothing. What sorry excuse for human beings we would be if we remained silent after the way children have been treated and have had to experience at the hands of these monsters. What right would we have to continue living/existing?.

Rather the earth open up and swallow me up than live in a world in which children are targeted and are fair game.

You don’t know my position although you should by my posts. I don’t call for anything. The Syrian people decide and lead and I support them in whatever little way I can.

As for the extremists. The revolution is busy at the moment struggling against Assad. If after Assad’s fall, the foreign extremists persist then, as Sh. Yaqoubi said, for them will be drones.

August 5th, 2013, 3:24 pm


revenire said:

Don’t anyone kid yourselves, read Omen’s Twitter TL and see him call for blood and death.

August 5th, 2013, 3:27 pm


Tara said:



What was the Alawi sheik Muwafaw Ghazal sitting next to Ali Kayali (Ali is the head master and the prime perpetrator of tha massacre) when Ali Kayali was talking about Banyas? Planning a hot date?

August 5th, 2013, 3:44 pm



All people who dies in alawite or sunni villages will be all poor and without any money to flee. They will be the victims used by the president to kill more poor people. While rich alawites enjoy life in Dubai like many of the relatives of the president opening bussinesses there and receiving millions of dollars in interests from the Syrian People Stolen Assets Bank Account daily.

August 5th, 2013, 3:59 pm


mjabali said:


That infamous video is from a funeral. you could hear the video and see how it is a funeral for someone who has died in this conflict.

Alawi Sheikhs are irrelevant amongst the Alawis in general. They appear only when someone dies.

Also, Sheikh Ghazal never issued any Fatwa …this is a fabrication from the cheapest type because you could see it is fake right away.

Again: Alawi sheikhs has nothing to do with this conflict. As it seems they stayed invisible like many.

August 5th, 2013, 4:26 pm


mjabali said:

Sandro Low:

1- Of course it is mostly the poor who are going to die from all sides, plus the destruction of the Syrian state.

2- The foreigners who are fighting in Syria are a huge problem.

3- I never argued about any roots for this problem. I look at what is going on and what is going to happen.

4- Dictatorship is the essence of many ills in the middle east.

5- Religion: Mostly Islam is the root of many of our problems in the middle east.

6- Minorities are a target in the Middle East.

7- Since I am from a minority, I am really interested in the issues of this minority and other minorities.

August 5th, 2013, 4:35 pm


mjabali said:


I do not believe a word in your emotional response. I read through your text the opposite of the rosy, peace loving hippie you are trying to portray about your self. Foreigners who talk like you are nothing but death in my country these days. I do not get fooled with empty words.

August 5th, 2013, 4:39 pm


Observer said:

This is very interesting analysis of Hassan’s speech and how he is now clearly espousing a sectarian based discourse as his support amongst other muslims and I might add other religious or political groups has evaporated with his involvement directly in the Syrian conflict.

Here it is and I would argue that if the Alawi as Mjabali tells us have no religious figures and no fatwas then certainly the theocracy of Tehran and the Dahia do, and they do so to permit involvement in Palestine and in Syria and elsewhere.

Here is the article, TARA and Syrian Hamster in particular read it carefully

خالد الدخيل *
الأحد ٤ أغسطس ٢٠١٣
لأول مرة يقول حسن نصرالله أنه سيتحدث كشيعي. قال ذلك يوم الجمعة الماضي. تكلم قبل هذا الوقت كثيراً عن الطائفية، واعترف بأنها داء يهدد المنطقة. لكنه كان يتحدث عن الموضوع من مسافة، وبلغة يغلب عليها الوعظ أحياناً، والتهديد أحياناً أخرى. يوم الجمعة اختار أن يتحدث عنه من خلال انتمائه المذهبي. السمة الثانية لحديث نصرالله أنه قرن فيه بين انتمائه المذهبي، وتحرير فلسطين، كل فلسطين، من النهر إلى البحر. أما السمة الثالثة فهي أنه لم يتطرق إلى سورية. تجاهلها تماماً كما فعل في خطابه السابق. بهذه السمات الثلاث يتبين أن حديث نصرالله كان حديث دفاع عن شيء ما، وحديث تبرير لشيء ما. وعندما تجتمع صفة الدفاع إلى صفة التبرير في الحديث يصبح من الواضح أن ما يخفيه هذا الحديث لا يقل أهمية عما يفصح عنه. كان نصرالله يدافع بشكل خفي، غير مباشر، عن اصطفافه إلى جانب النظام السوري ضد الشعب، وعن مشاركة قوات حزبه إلى جانب قوات النظام في تدمير المدن السورية. هو يدرك أن هذه المشاركة وذاك الاصطفاف نسفا ادعاء المقاومة الذي يتلفع به الحزب من أساسه. ولأن مشاركة الحزب كانت بتوجيه وتمويل إيرانيين، وبالتالي ضمن الإستراتيجية الإيرانية، كان لا بد أن يدافع نصرالله في خطابه عن إيران أيضاً. ولأن منبع هذه المشاركة طائفي في أصله وفصله، كان لا بد أن تكون الطائفية، والتنصل منها، وسيلة الدفاع الأولى.
يقول نصرالله إنه تحدث كشيعي لأن اللغة الطائفية ضد الشيعة «بدأت تكبر مع الأحداث في سورية، بغية إخراج الشيعة من معادلة الصراع العربي الإسرائيلي وأن تخرج إيران من المعادلة». دقق في هذا المقطع، وستجد فيه نفساً دفاعياً منهكاً، كما ستجد الكثير من المغالطة المكشوفة. من هم الشيعة المشار إليهم هنا؟ ولماذا الربط بينهم وبين إيران في المقطع نفسه، وفي الاستهداف ذاته؟ هل يمكن إخراج الشيعة «من معادلة الصراع العربي الإسرائيلي»؟ إذا كان المقصود بالشيعة هنا العرب، فهم جزء من الأمة، ولا يملك أحد إخراجهم من المعادلة. أما إذا كان المقصود بذلك إيران، فإن المسألة تصبح مختلفة تماماً. كأن نصرالله يريد أن يماهي بين إيران وبين الشيعة العرب، كما يتماهى هو، والحزب الذي يقوده. ثم ما العلاقة بين مشاركة الحزب في القتال في سورية لمصلحة إيران، وبين معادلة الصراع العربي الإسرائيلي؟ بالنسبة إلى نصرالله، كما بالنسبة إلى إيران، الانتصار على إسرائيل يتطلب أولاً الانتصار على الشعب السوري، وإبقاء النظام في مكانه على جثث الناس، وأطلال المدن المدمرة. أي أن نصرالله يفصل النظام السوري عن الشعب السوري، وهو محق في ذلك. لكنه يعتبر هذا الشعب بثورته على النظام عدواً، ربما أكثر عداوة له من إسرائيل. وإلا كيف يمكن تفسير إيغال «حزب الله»، ومن خلفه إيران، في الدم السوري من أجل نظام يعتبر من أسوأ الأنظمة العربية، وأكثرها دموية، وأبشعها استبداداً؟ ثم منذ متى كانت الشعوب على ضلال، والأنظمة السياسية، خاصة الاستبدادية منها، هي التي على صواب؟ لم يقل بهذا أحد إلا دهاقنة الاستبداد، وحراس معابد الطائفية. ونصرالله هنا يتناقض في موقفه بشكل حاد مع مقولة النبي محمد (صلى الله عليه وسلم).
على رغم ذلك يقول نصرالله أن العرب جعلوا من إيران العدو بدلاً من إسرائيل، متجاهلاً عداوته هو وإيران للشعب السوري. هو يعكس ما كان ولا يزال الأمر عليه تماماً. فإيران هي التي تتعامل مع العرب كأعداء، وليس العكس. فهي التي شاركت الأميركيين في تدمير العراق من خلال حلفائها الذين جاؤوا مع الاحتلال، ومن خلال تمويل وتسليح المليشيات فيه. وقد دخلت إيران في ما يشبه شراكة نفوذ مع الأميركيين في العراق، وذلك بهدف إضعافه، وإبقائه مقسماً طائفياً حتى لا يعود ويكون منافساً لها في المنطقة، كما كان عليه من قبل. وطهران هي المصدر الرئيس لمد النظام السوري بالمال والسلاح، والمقاتلين الشيعة، بمن فيهم مقاتلي «حزب الله»، في حرب أهلية ذهب ضحيتها حتى الآن أكثر من مئة وعشرين ألف قتيل. وإيران هي التي أنشأت «حزب الله» اللبناني، وهي مصدر تمويله وتسليحه. وهذا الحزب متهم من قبل محكمة دولية باغتيال رفيق الحريري، ومتهم من قبل نصف الشعب اللبناني بأنه متورط في الاغتيالات التي اجتاحت لبنان ما بين 2005 و 2012. وقد أصبح هذا الحزب بفضل إيران وتخاذل العرب، قوة إقليمية تحارب الآن كطرف في الحرب الأهلية في سورية. وإيران هي التي أنشأت المجلس الأعلى للثورة في العراق قبل الاجتياح الأميركي، وهو تنظيم شيعي ترأسه عائلة عراقية من أصل إيراني. هذا فضلاً عن أن إيران تحتل الجزر الإماراتية في الخليج العربي، وتتدخل بالمال والسلاح في اليمن، وفي البحرين. من هو الذي يتصرف في هذه الحالة كعدو مع الطرف الآخر؟ إيران؟ أم الدول العربية؟ إجابة نصرالله على هذه الأسئلة معروفة. لكنها إجابة تبنى ليس فقط على ارتباط مالي وسياسي بإيران، بل على شراكة طائفية معها في المنطقة.
هذا يقودنا إلى حديث نصرالله عن الطائفية. والأمين العام يعرف أن الطائفية ظاهرة عربية إسلامية، بل ظاهرة إنسانية قديمة، وأن مصدر الطائفية ليس وجود الطوائف والمذاهب بحد ذاتها. فهذا يعبر عن التعددية التي هي من سمات المجتمع الإنساني. مصدر الطائفية هو أولاً ارتباط المصلحة السياسية بالطائفة، وثانياً ارتباط الدين بالدولة، ومن ثم التخندق داخل الرؤية الطائفية ومستنداتها العقدية إلى الإنسان والتاريخ والعالم، حماية للمصلحة السياسية، التي يفترض أن تشكل سياجاً يحمي الطائفة ومعتقداتها. من هذه الزاوية يبدو حسن نصرالله نموذجاً طائفياً بارزاً في خطابه، وفي قناعاته، وفي مواقفه السياسية. يكفي أن ديباجة كل خطاب من خطاباته تعكس بشكل دقيق التخندق الطائفي المشار إليه. إلى جانب ذلك هو يعتبر نفسه جندياً تحت راية «ولاية الفقيه»، وهي راية طائفية بامتياز. وموقفه، وموقف «حزب الله» من النظام السوري ينطلق في أصله من حقيقة أنه نظام عائلة علوية (إحدى الفرق الشيعية) محاطة بغالبية سنية داخل سورية وخارجها. وبالتالي فإن سقوط هذا النظام سوف يفرض حكم الغالبية، الأمر الذي سيخرج إيران من العالم العربي، ويجعل «حزب الله» في حالة انكشاف سياسي وعسكري ترغمه في الأخير على التحول إلى حزب سياسي من دون سلاح. لا يستطيع حسن نصرالله القول بأن هذه المعطيات الطائفية لا تدخل في حساباته وحسابات الحزب، وهي حسابات على أية حال تبدأ من طهران، وليس من الضاحية الجنوبية في بيروت.
بل إن جمهورية إيران الإسلامية تعرّف نفسها في مواد عدة من دستورها بأنها دولة مذهب بعينه، وبأنها ملتزمة بكل ما تقتضيه رؤية هذا المذهب في الداخل والخارج، وفي الحقوق والواجبات، وفي السياستين الداخلية والخارجية. وانسجاماً مع ذلك تحرم المادة 115 من الدستور على كل إيراني ليس شيعياً إثنا عشري، ولا يؤمن بولاية الفقيه، من الترشح لرئاسة الجمهورية. أي أن الإيراني الشيعي الإثنا عشري الذي لا يؤمن بولاية الفقيه، والشيعي الزيدي، فضلاً عن السني والمسيحي، كل هؤلاء لا يحق لهم الترشح لمنصب رئيس الجمهورية. منصب مرشد الدولة لا يحتاج إلى هذا التحصين الدستوري، لأنه يأتي بالضرورة من داخل طبقة فقهاء المذهب، وليس من خارجه. ما رأي الأمين العام لـ «حزب الله» في هذه القيود والتحديدات الدستورية؟ هل يعتبرها قيوداً طائفية؟ لا أظنه يعتبرها طائفية، لأنه ينظر إلى الموضوع من داخل الصندوق الطائفي نفسه للقيادة الإيرانية؟ وتماشياً مع هذه النصوص تنحصر تحالفات إيران الإقليمية مع قوى شيعية ينتظر منها أن تساعدها في تحقيق رؤيتها، ومصالحها على مستوى الإقليم. ومن هذه الزاوية تحديداً يأتي تدخل قوات «حزب الله» في سورية، كما هو تدخل قوات الفضل بن عباس، و «عصائب الحق». من هنا فإن قول نصرالله في خطابه الأخير «نحن شيعة علي بن أبي طالب في العالم لن نتخلى عن فلسطين ولا عن شعبها ولا عن مقدساتها، فقولوا عنا رافضة وإرهابيين، ومجرمين، قولوا ما شئتم واقتلونا تحت كل حجر ومدر، وفي كل جبهة وعلى باب كل حسينية ومسجد، فنحن شيعة علي بن أبي طالب لن نترك فلسطين»، هو تبرير لمواقف وسياسات طائفية بات معروفاً. كما أن فيه شحنة من المزايدة على الموقف من فلسطين، وهي مزايدة عرفتها هذه القضية الكبيرة، وخبرت مؤداها ونتائجها على مر أكثر من ستين سنة من الصراع مع العدو الإسرائيلي. الجديد في هذه المزايدة المكشوفة الآن أنها تأتي برطانة دينية طائفية، بعد أن كانت تأتي برطانة قومية ويسارية. لم يأتِ نصرالله بجديد في كل ما قاله يوم الجمعة. كل ما فعله أنه عبر من دون أن يدري عن إحساسه بأن أحداً خارج طائفته لم يعد يصدق ما يقول. سورية أفقدت «السيد» مصداقية كسبها قبل سنوات ليست كثيرة، لكنها مكلفة. كان لا بد أن يكون خطابه شيعياً بشكل مباشر هذه المرة.

August 5th, 2013, 5:09 pm


Uzair8 said:

[4th attempt to post]

Regime supporters here and a on a couple of other forums I visit got plenty of mileage from the croissant story.

Posted on Yalla Souriya about 10 minutes ago:


The banning of the croissant in Aleppo? Yeah, that’s a bogus story:

August 5th, 2013, 5:28 pm


ilya said:

Militants kill 450 Kurdish civilians in northern Syria
Foreign-backed militants fighting against the Syrian government have killed 450 civilians, including 120 children, in a Kurdish-majority area in northern Syria.

According to al-Alam, militants from al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front attacked Tal Abyad district of Raqqa governorate on Monday, killing 330 women and elderly men as well as 120 children.

The massacre comes a week after al-Nusra militants attacked two Kurdish villages in Aleppo and took around 200 civilians hostage.

Fighting between Kurdish militia and al-Qaeda-linked groups has been escalating in north and northeastern Syria in the past weeks after Kurdish fighters, who are opposed to foreign interference in Syria, managed to push back militants from several positions in the area.

On July 30, a powerful Kurdish militia said it is mobilizing against al-Qaeda-linked militant groups in northeastern Syria after a Kurdish opposition leader was killed in the area.

“We call on the Kurdish people … to step forward…. Anyone fit to bear arms should join the ranks of the Committees for the Protection of the Kurdish People (YPG) and to face the assaults of these armed groups,” said a YPG statement, which was released shortly after the assassination of Isa Huso in al-Qamishli.

Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies — especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey — are supporting the militants operating inside Syria.

According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million displaced due to the violence.

August 5th, 2013, 5:50 pm


AMEERA said:

لك تفو عليكم انتو و هيك ثورة يعني مطرح ما خر.. شنقوه و تيتي تيتي متل ما رحتي متل ما جيتي

سفارة الإئتلاف في أمريكا: عصابة سرقة ونصب واحتيال واغتناء فاحش(حلقة 1)

مشاكس.نت, أغسطس 5, 2013

1- بياعة كلاسين وجرسون وحارس ستربتيز ومفاوض اسرائيل بإسم النظام وموظفة سابقة لدى السفارة السورية(منذ سنة فقط) ومحترف كتاب عرائض هم بعض “أسرة” الإئتلاف في أمريكا

2- ايجار “مكتب واشنطن بربع مليون دولار للبروزة فقط

3- شرحه مكتب نيويورك

4- ميزانية مدفوعة مسبقة لثلاثة اشهر من مصطفى الصباغ شخصيا الذي يعتبر سفارة الإئتلاف في امريكا ممثلا شخصيا له حتى لايؤتمروا من القيادة الجديدة مع الوعد بأن الإئتلاف سيعود لمصطفى صباغ في غضون الأشهر الثلاثة القادمة

5- رواتب تتراوح بين 5000 دولار لستة عشر الف دولار لأشخاص كانوا يستلمون مالايزيد عن الفي دولار شهريا (ماقبل الإئتلاف) يعني اغتناء واستغلال بشع لا وبل سرقة حليب اطفال المخيمات فكل فلس يصرفونه هو يؤخذ من أموال دفعت للقضية السورية لا من اجل اغتناء هؤلاء السفلة وجشعهم.

6- “سفير ” غير متواجد على الإطلاق في واشنطن ومن طيارة خمس نجوم لطيارة خمس نجوم على حساب الثورة السورية

7- نصب واختيال بالبيانات الشخصية وازدواج التصاريح واختلافها بين الانكليزي والعربي في “استحمار” واضح للثورة السورية وقراء مواقع الإئتلاف ومكتبه في امريكا

8- شكوك هائلة حول ثلاثة شخصيات على الاقل واستمرار مولاتهم للنظام وتواجدهم كطابور خامس للمخابرات السورية

9- محاولة من “السفير” للإستيلاء على ملف التفاوض في جنيف ووقوع الرئيس “الأمي” تحت براثن سعادة السفير وتركه له للتكلم باسم الإئتلاف أمام كيري في اجتماعه الاخير معه في نيويورك

10- ارتباط السفير العميق جدا بالماكينة اليهودية في أمريكا ليس لمصلحة الثورة ولكن للمصلحة الشخصية فقط والبناء عليها

عندما تبعث مبعوثا ليمثلك في دولة معينة أنت تختار انبل الوجوه وأنظفها ليس ليمثلك فقط بل ليكون غير قابل للشراءمن قبل الدولة وأيضا ليكون محترما من الدولة المضيفة ……وتختار اشخاصا لاغبار عليهم بولائهم لقضيتك ولشعبك اولا وأخيرا ولا اجندات شخصية لهم او خلفيات مشبوهة مقرفة كما سترون معنا في عدة تحقيقات بدأناها منذ شهر وبتعاون سوريين نبلاء قدموا وقتهم وأموالهم للمحققين الخاصين في عدة ولايات امريكية لنصل للحقيقة لنعرضها على شعبنا وعلى كل المهتمين بالامر

نبدأ حلقتنا الأولى بمن هم أعضاء السفارة في أمريكا؟

للإئتلاف هنا مكتبين مكتب واشنطن ومكتب نيويورك يرأس كل التمثيل الإئتلافي كله

الدكتور نجيب غضبان الذي ستكون أخر حلقة بهذا المسلسل عنه شخصيا

وسنبدأ بمكتب واشنطن ونبدأ بالعنوان الذي اختاره نجيب ليكون مكتب للإئتلاف

عنوان المكتب هو 1101 بنسلفانيا افينيو(1101 Pennsylvania Avenu

انقر هنا لعرض الصورة الكاملة.

لمن لايعرف بنسلفانيا افينيو هو الشارع نفسه الذي يتواجد عليه البيت الابيض نفسه هو من اغلى شوارع امريكا قاطبة فمكتب الإئتلاف هو جار لبراك اوباما رئيس امريكا…….!!!!!! لايتواجد في هذا الشارع اي سفارة اجنبية على الإطلاق

الا سفارة إئتلافنا المبعوج؟؟؟!!!!!

فسفارات الصين واليابان وفرنسا وروسيا تبعد عدة اميال عن البيت الابيض وهي تقرب وزارة الخارجية ولكن لحكمة ما قرر نجيب الغضبان ان يكون جارا للبيت الابيض!!!!! وبإيجار قدره $220 الف دولار سنويا في بناية هي لشركات قانونية غنية جدا طبعا ضف على ذالك $40 الف دولار لمواقف سيارات جناب الإئتلاف

فتكون اجرة مكتب واشنطن للإئتلاف $260 الف دولار ينطح دولار بينما سفارة النظام نفسه تدفع ربع هذا المبلغ وبمقر مئة ضعف اكبر من مكتب الإئتلاف وحتى سفارة البرازيل تدفع اقل …..ولكن الإئتلاف الذي يمثل لاجئين سوريين في لبنان يعيشون على $27 دولار شهريا يرى سفير الإئتلاف أن يصرف مايزيد عن ربع مليون دولار على مكتب ليجاور الرئيس الامريكي!!!!!أهل هو يعتقد أن باراك اوباما سيستيقظ بنصف الليل يوما وسيطلب سفير الإئتلاف ولذالك فهو يستطيع ان يركض المسافة وبغير حاجة حتى لتكسي؟؟؟؟؟؟

طبعا يستطيع الإئتلاف استئجار “مكتبا له في ضواحي العاصمة بعشر المبلغ واكبر وافسح الا ان “المقامات” لاتسمح فهو نجيب الغضبان…….والدنيا مقامات

رئيس مكتب واشنطن : المناضل عباب خليل….!!!!!!!

اقراوا التعريف على اعضاء الإئتلاف في امريكا :

من هو عباب خليل؟……..هو ابو صاحب الاسم الطائفي المقيت ابو حيدرة….. والذي وبكل فخر يطالب الجميع بمناداته به

انقر هنا لعرض الصورة الكاملة.

انقر هنا لعرض الصورة الكاملة.
200 (1)

كرت التعريف على عباب يقول بالعربي “المحامي” عباب خليل وبالإنكليزي يقول عباب خليل “حاف” …..وبالعربي يقول انه رئيس مكتب واشنطن وبالإنكليزي يقول هو “رئيس” الموظفين في الإئتلاف ….فلماذا وماهي الحقيقة؟

في موقع الإئتلاف في أمريكا يقول عباب انه تخرج من جامعة بيروت العربية من كلية الحقوق عام 2001 لكن اذا نظرت لمواليده فهو من مواليد المزيرعة (جبال العلويين وهو طبعا من الطائفة العلوية) وهو من مواليد عام 1979!!!!!

يعني أنه تخرج من كلية الحقوق باقل من ثلاثة سنوات……وطبعا لايذكر اي شيئا عن مابعد التخرج ولايظهر له اي اثر في امريكا حتى عام 2006 فمااذ فعل في خمسة سنين بين “تخرجه المزعوم” وظهوره في تكساس عام 2006؟؟؟

نحن في المشاكس بصمنا درسنا ان اي معارض يذكر جامعة بيروت العربية أنه كاذب (كما أحمد الجربان) ولكننا قررنا ان نحقق بأنفسنا عن ذالك ولم تجد الجامعة في سجلاتها اي شخص باسم عباب خليل على الإطلاق……فوضحت حقيقة اغفال هذه “الشهادة” بتعريف عباب عن نفسه بالإنكليزي!!!!

ثانيا وجدنا ان عباب هو ابن اخ العميد غسان خليل رئيس فرع المعلومات في المخابرات العامة…….وعباب قد “خدم” عند عمه عدة سنوات والتي يخبىء فيها عباب ذكرها……..مخابرات القبضاي!!!!!!!

عباب وبحكم عدم وجود أي شهادة معترف عليها في امريكا لديه وسيلتين للإقامة هنا اولها الزواج وثانيها اللجوء السياسي…قدم عباب على اللجوء السياسي ورفض عدة مرات بحكم تعامله مع المخابرات السوري في عسكريته ولكنه قرر في صيف عام 2012 ان ينضم للثورة وان يظهر في عدة مظاهرات ضد النظام وعلى وبعد توظيفه بالإئتلاف نال الجرين كارد في شهر آذار في هذا العام اي منذ عدة شهور!!!!!

فتعريفه على نفسه في موقع الإئتلاف وتعريفه على نفسه في موقعه الشخصي هناك طبعا فوارق غريبة عجيبة

فهو يعترف وبشكل غير مباشر انه عمل غي عدة مطاعم ولكنه يبهرها ويقول انه كان مديرا او ماشابه كذالك ولكن دعونا اولا لنعرف عن اين اشتغل عباب اولا

رد لوبستر…مطعم سريع وشعبي


ستيك اند شيك مطعم كمكدولاند

طبعا لايذكر عباب باي ولاية او مدينة فتطوعنا ان نبحث في تكساس وهي الولاية التي قال انه اشتغل فيها فيما بعد ذالك

عندما اتصلنا بادارة الولاية لكلا السلسلتين لهذين المطعمين

لم يجدوا اسما يشابه هذا الاسم ولكنهم عثروا على حارس ليلي(إسمه ادي) يشابه هذا المدعي …ولما طابقنا هذه المعلومات مع الشغلين الاخرين في العقارات التي يدعي انه اشتغلها وضح معنا انه وبحكم جسده الممتلئ عمل كباونسر او حارس للبنايات وللمطاعن ولاوبل زميل له قال أنه اشتغل دوام جزئي كحارس لنادي ستربتيز فيهيوستن تكساس!!!!!!!!!!!!!! رئيس مكتب الإئتلاف في واشنطن حارس لنادي تعري!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

انقر هنا لعرض الصورة الكاملة.
202 (1)

يعمل هذا “العباب” في كل تاريخه بأمريكا وبأجر لايتجاوز ال$12 دولار بالساعة

اي مايعادل الألفين دولار في الشهر……فتأملوا يا ناس انه بعقده الجديد في الإئتلاف ينال مبلغ $7000 دولار اي قريبا ثلاثة اضعاف ونصف ماكان يحصل عليه من قبل

طبعا عدا المصاريف من طيران واقامة اوتيلات حيث هو من خارج واشنطن

وهذه نسخة عن عقده المسجل في وزارة العمل الامريكية

الأجمل من هذا ان عباب سافر الى مصر لحضور مؤتمر الأقليات منذ شهور وبجواز سفر سوري جديد عم بيلمع لمع (حيث لم يحصل وقتها على الغرين كارد وامريكا لم تعطه وقتها وثائق سفر انسانية بعد)

ننهي الحلقة الأولى عن “سفارة الإئتلاف” ونتسائل…..اولا كيف ينتهي الامر بحارس ليلي لنادي تعري أن يصبح رئيسا لمكتب واشنطن ومشكوك بتاريخه حيث عمل مخبرا لدا عمه لعدة سنين ويكذب بكل تاريخه حتى !!!! ألم يتحقق نجيب الغضبان بتاريخ هذا الرجل؟؟؟ ام هو يعرف ووظفه مع كل هذه الاسئلة ؟؟؟

معه وجود مليون سوري بأمريكا مؤهلين اكثر من الف من هذا “العباب” فلماذا وظفه نجيب الغضبان؟؟؟؟؟

لمن يريد المزيد من الشرح هذا الرابط الرائع يحمل الكثير من الشرح

August 5th, 2013, 6:13 pm


zoo said:

Idriss’s militias desperation is growing

Rebels in Homs look to Nusra for help

BEIRUT: Starved of weapons, rebels in Homs can no longer defend the neighborhood alone and will be forced to call on their rivals from the jihadist Nusra Front, senior opposition military sources have told The Daily Star.

Read more:
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News ::

August 5th, 2013, 6:14 pm


zoo said:

Saudi weapons reaching the rebels is triggering a campaign of Syrian refugees boys recruitment to fight in Syria.
Islamists within the FSA are encouraging children to leave school and enroll in religious madrassah in order to build a new generation of jihadists

Audit of Syria refugees finds organized crime and child soldiers
GENEVA | Mon Aug 5, 2013 2:27pm EDT

(Reuters) – Many Syrians who have escaped their country are now desperate to escape from U.N.-run refugee camps, where women are not safe and teenage boys are recruited as soldiers to fight in the conflict, according to an internal U.N. report.

A U.N. official told Reuters that there were suspicions that boys of 15 or 16 were often taken back to fight, chaperoned by an uncle, elder brother or other relative.

“It’s a war crime,” the official said.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said child recruitment had not been a major problem until now because the opposition forces did not have enough arms and ammunition.

But the lifting of embargoes on supplying arms to opposition groups meant both sides would need more soldiers.

Even if it suspects child recruitment, the U.N. is almost powerless to stop suspected child soldiers because refugees have a right to return to their own country.

The report said many Syrian children were not attending school in Jordan or Lebanon, but the U.N. official said there was evidence that many were attending religious schools, or madrassahs.

August 5th, 2013, 6:25 pm



What a load of delusional d-p

After the war is over, the Syrian government needs to keep a comprehensive records of those Syrian expats who have been actively involving anti-government violence even though they are probably not involved in direct terrorist acts. Those people cause indirect human suffering and property damage.

hardly sane “hardly a mssacre/war” poopy cheap mukhabarat mafiosos mentalities never learn their lesson. It just condemned all the hezbos, aunite, and dog-poop athad sniffers and lickers in many countries to search warrants and probably jail terms for spying on free citizens in free countries on behalf of terrorist regime and the terrorist packs of flies surrounding it for its stinky smell.

August 5th, 2013, 7:07 pm



Outstanding article. Read it twice. nus-lira, like dog-poop athad keep exposing their ugly behinds with every word the two clowns utter.

In the end, the two clowns work for a loser fanatic, and they can’t but expose their master’s ugly butt along with theirs. It’s naked ugliness season.

August 5th, 2013, 7:12 pm


Tara said:

I took Apple’s post as a cowardly threat from a … Peasant.

No offense to real ones.

August 5th, 2013, 7:12 pm



Starved for weapons (@220)
Flooded with weapons (@221)

Stability anyone?

August 5th, 2013, 7:16 pm


Syrian said:

موقع عكس السير الإخباري Aksalser news
2 hours ago ·
مصادر عكس السير تؤكد تحرير مطار منغ العسكري وعملية التمشيط جارية الان

Bye bye Ming air port

August 5th, 2013, 7:16 pm



The thruth about d-p athad heroic visit to its hyena’s in Daryya…

August 5th, 2013, 7:27 pm


Syrian said:

After the fall of Ming AirPort , the road to the 2 infested hezboola fighters towns of Nebal and Zahra is open,
Can’t wait to hand out sweets in the streets

August 5th, 2013, 7:52 pm


Tara said:


On Saturday, a massive explosion of weapon depot in Wadi al Dahab took place. On Sunday, 4 villages in Latakia were liberated. On Monday, Minneg airport fell. It is a blessed month indeed.

August 5th, 2013, 8:10 pm


Uzair8 said:

National Defence Force (NDF)

When this organisation was allegedly formed there was a lot of fanfare and new found confidence. I say ‘allegedly’ as it may well have been a name change for the shabeeha.

At the time I, and presumably many others, suspected it was more rhetoric and a propaganda gimmick than substance. We were told some areas had female members of the NDF manning (or womanning) the streets. I doubted these NDF folk would stand up to any real pressure.

The recent rebel offensive on Latakia in which 5 villages were rapidly captured only reinforces this view. Time will tell however it seems this (NDF formation) was another case of the regime attempting to make up for its shortcomings via creating the appearance of strength, cohesion and organisation. Just like how Assad of recent regularly talks of victory.

August 5th, 2013, 8:12 pm


Uzair8 said:

Posted on Yalla Souriya over half-an-hour ago:

#Syria #Aleppo –

Yalla Souriya posts on Meng/Minnigh Military Airport

August 5th, 2013, 8:23 pm


revenire said:

Uzair did they capture any MiGs? LOL

August 5th, 2013, 8:39 pm


Tara said:


I started sending some sweets to my neighbors. Would you like some?

August 5th, 2013, 9:11 pm


Uzair8 said:

Posted on Yalla Souriya about 10 minutes ago:

Syrian rebels push into Assad’s Alawite mountain stronghold

Syrian rebel fighters armed with anti-tank missiles pushed toward President Bashar al-Assad’s hometown of Qardaha on Monday, the second day of a surprise offensive in the heartland of his minority Alawite sect, opposition activists said.

Forces comprising 10 mainly Islamist brigades, including two al Qaeda-linked groups, advanced south to the outskirts of the Alawite village of Aramo, 20 km (12 miles) from Qardaha, taking advantage of rugged terrain, the activists said.

On Sunday rebel fighters captured half a dozen villages on the northern tip of the Alawite Mountain, located east of the port city of Latakia. The area is the main recruiting ground for Assad’s core praetorian guard units comprising the Republican Guards, Fourth Division and special forces…

For the rest:

August 5th, 2013, 9:18 pm


Akbar Palace said:

Good NewZ

The opposition has taken 4 villages in Latakia?

Time to celebrate and dance a hora!

“One small step for man, one giant leap for arab freedom.”

August 5th, 2013, 10:08 pm


observer said:

Again this is from Cham Press

It is clear the airport is finished.

It is also clear that at least four villages were overrun in Latakia

It is clear that Manar when it posts that the Takfiris are “burning their prisoners” alive and that they are ” sniping children ” and is talking of the massacre of ” khan al Asal ” is indirectly admitting that there suffering on the side of the pro regime areas and supporters.

Just the killing of the family that supported the regime in Rukn Addin.

So much for the Khaldieh destruction.

Now the war is not going to spare anyone unfortunately.

There is despair indeed.

Now Rifaat Assad is like Ghufran denouncing both the regime and the opposition and is proposing a salvation to avoid the destruction of the country.

i guess now that the fight is everywhere he is finding it necessary to avoid destruction.

He is actually telling the Alawi constituency I am here to save you from the retard. You have nothing in common with this incompetent, I will negotiate a truce and a transition that will guarantee your future.

All of those are indications that the pyrrhic victories of the regime are just that: they have not changed anything on the ground and more importantly the aim of the revolution to destroy the regime once and for all.

You ain’t seen nothing yet.

The fanatics have won. Now the fight is about the destruction of one group of fanatics at the hand of another group of fanatics.

Break it up I wrote before, but I was accused of being treasonous, well have it your way and complete destruction of all your villages and towns.

August 5th, 2013, 10:17 pm


Syrian said:

It also came right after Batta’s speech and his visit to Darayya.
It just showed how much in denial he is
A blessed end of Ramadan indeed.

August 5th, 2013, 10:57 pm


Ghufran said:

I do not know what you guys are celebrating, the attack on reef Latakia by nusra has been in preparation for months and received a push after the fall of khalidiya, if it is not contained it will lead to counter attacks on Sunni villages and massive cleansing of turkmans and poor Sunni around Latakia , and if the animals of nusra managed to bring the battle to Latakia you will see a blood bath worse than anything Syria witnessed so far. The attack on Minnig airport is part of the same scheme, what you see is a drawing of borders in anticipation of a defacto partition of Syria led by Erdogang who thinks that north Latakia should be part of his empire after his ancestors occupied Iskandaron province, he is using his nusra friends to fight the Kurds to shield Turkey from a future Kurdish state which he sees as a threat to Turkey. Fighters from all sides today are tools to ensure that the big boys get as much territories as possible, the FSA is simply irrelevant today and that is bad for many Syrians who like their brothers in eastern Aleppo and other areas will wake up discovering that the new sherif in town is nusra not the ” beloved” FSA. I will not be sending sweets if I was you Tara , what people like you and many syrians wanted is a new Syria that is free from Mukhabrat and nusra but what we are getting is exactly that.
Expect a harsh response from the army in northern Latakia because Latakia is indeed a red line for many, not just the regime , hundred of thousands of innocent Sunni and alawi civilians may pay the price of erdugang’s fantasy and pushing this agenda will only speed up the partition of Syria. The ignorance of some people on this blog is mind- boggling .
As for ghazal and alawi sheikhs in general, those sheikhs , unlike sunni sheikhs, have no power whatsoever and the kidnapping and beating of ghazal is simply at attempt to trigger counter kidnapping and escalate sectarian tensions, I am genuinely sorry for the confused minds I see here but I am not surprised, that is what war brings, it feeds the devil in each one of us. Btw, three of the ” liberated” villages are a battle field now and one was retaken by the army , by the end of this week or sooner , this ghazwah by nusra will be old news.

August 5th, 2013, 11:13 pm


zoo said:

Freedom of expression in Egypt ridicule Obama

‘Hey Obama, You Are Stupid, Bad Man’: Viral Egyptian Music Video Accuses Obama of Supporting Terrorism, Muslim Brotherhood..

Sama Al Masry Elmasry Egyptian protester anti Obama belly-dance Youtube video

A music video featuring an Arabic-singing belly dancer voicing profanity-laced lyrics that accuse President Barack Obama of supporting terrorism and the Muslim Brotherhood has gone viral in Egypt.

The video – “You Obama, Your Father, Mother” – features performer Sama Elmasry brandishing a sword next to Obama’s photo as well as various Photoshopped images of the U.S. president including dressed as Osama bin Laden and as a baby in diapers
Hey Obama, You Are Stupid, Bad Man: Viral Egyptian Music Video Accuses Obama of Supporting Terrorism, Muslim Brotherhood


Obama as bin Laden (Screenshot: YouTube)
Hey Obama, You Are Stupid, Bad Man: Viral Egyptian Music Video Accuses Obama of Supporting Terrorism, Muslim Brotherhood


Obama as a baby in diapers (Screenshot: YouTube)

The lyrics chastise Obama and U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson for their perceived lack of support for the Egyptian Army which has been in control since the ousting of President Mohammed Morsi last month.

Among the lyrics, according to the video’s subtitled translation (emphasis added):

Hey Obama, Hey Obama Hey Obama, support the terrorism Traitor like the Brotherhood members

August 6th, 2013, 12:06 am


zoo said:

More Erdogan’s frustration and imbecility on display

News Analysis: Turkey wants Syrian factions to join forces against Assad
Aug 06,2013

ANKARA, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) — Turkey wants the warring Syrian factions, mostly the Kurds and the Arab anti-government fighters, to reconcile with each other so as to mount a strong resistance against the forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, analysts say.

However, that goal remains elusive as the clashes between the Kurds and Arab rebels have shown no sign of halting.

“We want all groups in Syria to consolidate their forces and work for the ouster of Assad first and foremost,” a senior government official told Xinhua Monday on condition of anonymity.

August 6th, 2013, 12:08 am


majedkhaldoun said:

Mini Apple said
After the war is over, the Syrian government needs to keep a comprehensive records of those Syrian expats who have been actively involving anti-government violence even though they are probably not involved in direct terrorist acts.

When the war is over, and the rebels win will remember what you said

Some call for revenge,yet they say they are against revenge.

Mennegh airport is completely under rebels hands, The creation of northern state is becoming more probable than before

August 6th, 2013, 12:14 am


majedkhaldoun said:

Latakia is ours,we will clean Qurdaha and the coast, it will take time, but first we will liberate Hama and Homs,you call for killing Sunni by the regime, but where will the people who occupy the coast will go, there is no place for them except to surrender and your idol Assad will be history

August 6th, 2013, 12:20 am


zoo said:

Kurdish organization in Iran is prepared to send fighters to Syria
In related news, the Muslim Scholars’ Union of Kurdistan is seeking to prevent Kurdish youths from joining the Al-Nusra Front in Syria

Erbil, Asharq Al-Awsat—The Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), a Kurdish organization in Iran, has announced that it is “ready to send fighters to Syrian Kurdistan to fight beside their people.”

The decision comes in the light of ongoing clashes between the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria and Islamist groups such as Jabhat Al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Sources within Syria pointed out that “fatwas are broadcast from mosques in the region that permit Kurdish blood to be spilled. This development is very dangerous and is reminiscent of the infamous Operation Anfal, but this time against Syrian Kurds.”

August 6th, 2013, 12:22 am


Ghufran said:

For once I have to agree with Libwani:

قال كمال اللبواني عضو “الائتلاف المعارض” أن جماعة “الإخوان المسلمين” في سوريا “أصبحوا دولة إخوانية متكاملة تشتري ولاءات الناس” وأشار إلى “انهم لن يذهبوا إلى صناديق الإقتراع لأن الفشل ينتظرهم”.
اللبواني كشف لصحيفة “الشرق الأوسط” أن “جماعة الأخوان المسلمين تملك في سوريا حالياً سلطة متكاملة لا تقتصر على الصعيد العسكري، إنما الاقتصادي والاجتماعي والإغاثي”، موضحاً أن ما يسمى “هيئة حماية المدنيين” عبارة عن “دولة إخوانية متكاملة تشتري ولاءات الناس عبر تقديم بعض الخدمات ودفع الأموال”.
وأكد اللبواني للصحيفة أن “هذه الشبكات الزبائنية لن تنفعهم شيئاً لأنهم يفتقرون إلى الحاضنة الإجتماعية في سوريا”. وأضاف أن “الجماعة تقوم بتخزين الأسلحة تمهيداً لمرحلة ما بعد سقوط النظام”، مؤكداً أنهم “لن يذهبوا إلى صناديق الإقتراع لأنهم يعلمون أن الفشل ينتظرهم”، ومرجحاً أن يكون “العنف أحد خياراتهم”.
The battle at Minnig airport is still raging, and at the end our FSA friends will have nothing to claim but frequent flyers mileage , Syria for the near term will be owned by Islamists and the regime with the Kurds future being drawn now. What is funny is that none of the posters here, if given the choice, will live under nusra, with one or two possible exceptions, but rather in areas controlled by the regime because they will discover that it is the best of all bad choices, most expats will not return to Syria but they will write ” expert” opinions about the war and the country that was once a possible destination for visitors, and that says a lot about Syria today.

August 6th, 2013, 12:23 am


don said:

Stay Out Of Syria To Avoid Turning War Into Another Federally Funded Entitlement

Obama administration policy toward Syria is a slow train wreck. Unremitting pressure from war-minded elites is pushing President Barack Obama closer to military intervention in the bloody civil war. Yet getting involved would be a fool’s errand.

Nevertheless, America’s putative allies appear to believe that they are entitled to U.S. support. The president should disabuse them of this dangerous notion.

War should be a matter of necessity, not choice. Of course, the Sirens’ call of intervention usually promises quick and humane results. Alas, Americans seem to be constantly rediscovering that military operations rarely go as planned and the costs of conflict usually are far higher than expected.

Syrian insurgents and their supporters not only hope for Western aid. They expect it and are angry when Washington fails to act. Last August, reported the Washington Post, America “increasingly is being viewed with suspicion and resentment for its failure to offer little more than verbal encouragement to the revolutionaries.” One rebel spokesman said: “America will pay a price for this. America is going to lose the friendship of Syrians, and no one will trust them anymore. Already we don’t trust them at all.”

Washington recently promised to provide weapons to the rebels. That decision came in response to charges that Damascus used small amounts of chemical weapons. Yet doubts about that claim persist, since the government has little incentive to deploy chemical weapons except in large quantities as a last resort. Some analysts suspect that insurgents used captured stores in an attempt to induce Western intervention.

Refugees understandably wanted the globe’s sole superpower to overthrow their tormentor. Yet they acted as if Washington was supposed to represent them rather than Americans.

Louay Meqdad, a spokesman for the Free Syrian Army, said: “We need short-range ground-to-air missiles, [shoulder-fired] MANPADS, anti-tank missiles, mortars, and ammunition. We also need communications equipment, bullet-proof vests and gas masks.” Moreover, “It is necessary to establish secure areas and impose no-fly zones in the south or north.” Finally, the rebels required “a safe haven” to stop the regime from using “Scud missiles with unconventional warheads to shell liberated areas.” In another statement he declared: “If they send small arms, how can small arms make a difference? They should help us with real weapons, antitank and antiaircraft, and with armored vehicles, training and a no-fly zone.”


In any case, providing rebels with light weapons is a foolish half-step which would further entangle Washington without ending the conflict. An interventionist Greek Chorus then would insist that U.S. credibility was on the line and demand further steps, including direct military action such as a no fly zone. Since even that measure likely would not be enough to oust Assad, the war would continue, along with proposals for further escalation.

The expectations of Syria’s opposition are another reason to stay out. People around the world increasingly appear to view U.S. military intervention as some kind of entitlement. In Syria, it seems, they feel free to threaten Americans if Washington chooses not to risk its own citizens in combat.

Washington should reeducate the rest of the world about the purpose of the U.S. military. It is to protect Americans, not remake the globe. As John Quincy Adams declared nearly two centuries ago, the U.S. should be “the well-wisher to freedom and independence of all.” But America “is the champion and vindicator only of her own.” Americans should not go “abroad in search of monsters to destroy.”


August 6th, 2013, 2:07 am


apple_mini said:

As I commented before those Syrian expats who promote violence are useless for Syria except their money.

As for the opposition, apart being vile, they are also useless when SAA is having upper hand and crushing the rebels. Their foreign backers are what the regime is going to have negotiations with. The reconciliation will start when situation keeps improving. It will happen among true Syrians who reject violence.

Those narrow-minded opposition members just don’t get it. The so-called victories by their beloved Islamist fighters are either through massacres or bloated lies.

Look closely they actually are serving the regime’s political message. Military front is taking its course designed by SAA so we just need to wait and see. The political front is in the regime’s favor as well. The regime is gaining more legitimacy and authority.

The regime successfully contained the wildly free fall of lira. We visited market yesterday: everything is cheaper including vegetables, meat and bread from private bakery.

It is an amazing achievement: right before Eid, we have cross-board “deflation” in a country where war is raging.

The regime and SAA are rightfully brimming with confidence. Problems in Syria will be solved gradually later. Right now, the country is eager to crush the Islamists just like Egyptians and their army are conducting.

Partition in Syria is more about ideology to me. The opposition have proven themselves to be anti-revolution, counter-productive, treasonous, hypocritical and scandalous. We are happy to see that part is like cavity-ridden tooth falling off Syria.

August 6th, 2013, 3:20 am



I once met a guy in a Damascus hotel he used to pick up luggage and clean WC for 30 $ a month plus tips. It was in around the year 2.000. He explained to me he belonged to an alawite family in the coast. I felt pity for him when he told me in the future he would join the army. I did not believe how a guy, already by its 27-30 years old who was picking garbage and cleaning the dirty of my shoes could become something.

Months later when I was crossing Al-Qaa border going in my own car from Homs to Baalbeck I was expecting to get my papers signed. A voice from behind said “do not sign these papers”. He was joking, the same person, had become an official and with total authority to push back anyone or even detain anyone who did not pay enough tips.

Then I understood all alawites have an open door to the army and the places where they can get a lot of money like borders. Only them. Sunnis and christians need too much wasta to get these places if ever did it.

August 6th, 2013, 3:48 am



242. ZIAD

This is false news for stupid specific public who want to believe the story.

August 6th, 2013, 4:30 am


apple_mini said:

So at those refugee camps in Jordan which have been a popular photo op destination for celebrities including movie stars, PM’s wife and top notch western diplomats, what the real stories presenting themselves are horrific: women get sexually assaulted and sold for cheap. And teenager boys get lured and coerced to become child soldiers for the rebels.

Will it get worse than that? Women get raped and their girls are sold cheap as brides, while their boys get sent to the war zone for fighting.

Where is the humanity? It is a shame to be a Muslim and an insult to Allah in Ramadan.

August 6th, 2013, 5:09 am



250. apple_mini

Wake up my dear,

Why 20 % of luxury real state are in the hands of Assad and Makhlouf in Dubai while syrian girls are being sold and raped?

This is the result of 40 years of dictatorship and ignorance, 40 years of growing corruption and intensive destruction of civil society by Baath Party mafia, 40 years of of repression and fear by police state that have made poor people ignorant and weak.

How a socialist country became a capitalist one in 10 years of Bashar rule, with Porsches and last model Mercedes in huge amounts in Damascus while all around Syria people were heading to massive poverty…

The president of Syria is the sole responsible for getting the country in peace and united. In any previous time at any remote country the king would have been already executed because he has failed to fulfill his most important mission, peace and unity. Assad is still in power…. why? Because the terror apparatus and the iranian and russian secret services support him.

The more he stays in power against all political laws and natural laws the bigger the fall will be.

August 6th, 2013, 6:04 am


Mina said:

How can people here rejoice when teenagers are sent to blow themselves up just for the “opposition” to claim it has retaken a check-point for a few hours?

August 6th, 2013, 6:10 am



252. Mina

How can you MINA from Day 1 of the revolution rejoice when unarmed demonstrators were being bulleted, detained and tortured, sometimes even raped, and you did not mention it at all?

Now that your side is beginning to suffer same atrocities you complain. Habibi it has been 28 months since atrocities are being commited inside Assad prisons and villages destroyed by russian Scud missiles.

WAKE UP, do you know what it means? WAKE UP !!!!!!

August 6th, 2013, 6:18 am


Akbar Palace said:

I saw a link to this silly video on Drudge.

Does anyone care to comment? It seems this woman is telling Obama that he should never have supported the MB. However, they won the election. What they did after the election, I guess, is open to debate.

As usual, the US can never win. This singer obviously is pro-Sisi and pro-army. A little “risque” with the language…I guess times are changing…

The US needs to consistently support an elected government that supports individual freedoms. It can’t be more complicated than that.

August 6th, 2013, 7:41 am


zoo said:

#246 Ghufran

Now and after the war is over, expats Sunnis in the opposition as well as die hard rebels would neither dare to come back in Alawite-Christian-Kurdish controlled areas nor to to Islamist controlled areas. They will be stuck where they are now.

Since the Iranian revolution, most wealthy, westernized pro-Shah Iranians live in exile with little chance of coming back. They’ve been whining and protesting for 30 years but nothing has changed.

I think this is what will happen to many pro-rebels Syrians.
Like the Palestinians, many poor Syrians of rebels families will stay in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan with a permanent refugees status for years to come, many educated and wealthy Syrians will stay in the US and France and naturalize. “Generous” Qatar and KSA will host none.

August 6th, 2013, 8:30 am


zoo said:

12 Rebel Groups Defect from Free Syrian Army Ranks

TEHRAN (FNA)- At least 12 armed groups fighting in Syria declared their separation from Dar’e al-Jabal Brigade of the so-called Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The militants issued a statement to announce their defection from the Dar’e al-Jabal Brigade and called for the prosecution of commanders of the terrorist group, Al-Alam reported.

They noted that the militant group has committed crimes in two villages by using heavy weapons against villagers.

Other sources, however, say the cooperation between Dar’e al-Jabal Brigade and terrorist al-Qaeda-linked organization of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has caused the separation.

The vitally important development came after al-Qaeda and its affiliated militant groups warned of impending assassination attacks on the lives of FSA commanders in several areas.

Due to their much better and more sophisticated organization and trainings, terrorist groups normally lead the war of insurgency in Syria and rebel groups usually follow their orders.

After an FSA commander refused to be ruled by the al-Qaeda run al-Nusra Front earlier this year, the terrorist group killed him and warned of similar fate for several other FSA commanders in the area.

As a growing number of cases of war crimes and barbaric massacre and mutilation of civilians by the terrorist groups emerge in Syria, the number of the rebels defecting from the main armed opposition, the FSA, or giving up arms and surrendering to the Damascus government is on the rise.

August 6th, 2013, 8:35 am


zoo said:

For desperate pro-rebels, finally one rejoicing news: Al Mannagh air base fell in Al Qaeda’s hands.

Syria rebels, led by militants with al Qaeda links, claim capture of major air base

BEIRUT Syrian rebels captured a major air base in the north of the country on Tuesday after months of fighting, depriving President Bashar Assad’s forces of one of their main posts near the border with Turkey, activists said.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Mannagh helicopter base fell nearly 24 hours after rebels, led by al Qaeda-linked militants, launched an all-out offensive against it. The Aleppo Media Center said rebels finally captured it before dawn.

August 6th, 2013, 8:40 am


zoo said:

Happy days in post revolution Yemen continues

US urges citizens to leave Yemen ‘immediately’ amid global Qaeda alert

August 6th, 2013, 8:47 am


zoo said:

As Aleppo inhabitants settles in a Berlin-like city, government employees continue to get their wages, the NGOs try to cope with poverty and the armed rebels loot and kidnap

About half of the grassroots humanitarian aid groups in Aleppo have stopped operating amid security threats, volunteer shortages, and a lack of resources, says Lawrence, a Syrian who asked to use a fake name and works with the organization whose clothing drive was bombed.
“The closure of so many NGOs has put pressure on the other NGOs that are still active. People travel far to NGO offices even if there is a very little chance to get what they need,” he says.
The Assad government controls less than half of the city, and the remainder is under opposition control. Civilians are able to cross between both sides of the city at designated checkpoints, but crossing is dangerous. Those who cross often must pay bribes to soldiers on both sides and risk getting caught in the middle of skirmishes.

The good FSA are at front lines, and the bad ones are among people in the neighborhood equipped with their weapons. The bad ones kidnap or steal,” he says.
Throughout Syria there are now at least 1,200 different armed opposition groups, making it difficult to determine who is a legitimate fighting group and who is a criminal gang.

“There is a rise of theft,” says Abu Ahmad a member of the Free Syrian Army in Aleppo. “The FSA is fighting criminals and trying always to decrease number of crimes…. The criminals always change their group names, and use religious names and commit crimes. In addition, the regime uses some people to act like FSA and then commit crimes.”

August 6th, 2013, 8:56 am


zoo said:

Happy days in 3 years old Tunisia revolution continue…

Tunisia Ennahda chief says protests will not topple government

TUNIS – Agence France-Presse
Tunisia’s Islamist ruling party chief has said the government will not step down under pressure from the opposition, even as fresh protests were being readied Tuesday to demand just that.

Rached Ghannouchi’s remarks, published by La Presse newspaper, will likely deepen a crisis that has gripped the North African nation since a political assassination in February was followed by another last month.

August 6th, 2013, 8:59 am


revenire said:

There are no independent reports of Minnegh airbase falling. Let’s not forget this airbase “fell” at least NINE times in the last two years.

August 6th, 2013, 9:02 am


revenire said:

Akbar Palace can you explain why you called Iranians “towel heads”? Is it just Iranians, or is it all Muslims? And, for that that matter, all Arabs too?

You are aware that is a racist term correct?

August 6th, 2013, 9:05 am


zoo said:

A well groomed ‘victim’, hospital masks, kids crying: Is it a convincing piece of propaganda?

Syria activists film ‘chemical attack’

August 6th, 2013, 9:11 am


zoo said:

#262 Revenire

Dera’a announced front ‘revival’ 2 weeks ago died off.
The desperate pro-rebels are in need of some fictitious al Qaeda victories to chew on.

August 6th, 2013, 9:17 am


zoo said:

Qatar, ex-best friend, dumps Morsi

The Muslim Brotherhood was hoping that the international community would agree to qualify the change as an outright coup d’etat and thus enforce the re-instatement of Morsi.

EU foreign policy commissioner Catherine Ashton told Morsi in plain talk last week that it was too late to restore the pre-30 June setup. This point was reiterated to El-Shater by the mediating ‘quartet.’

“Yes, even the Qatari foreign minister is aware that there is no going back to the past,” said an Egyptian official who asked to remain anonymous.

Qatar has been the closest supporter of the Morsi regime and was expected to continue its alliance with the Brotherhood following the consenting change at the top of the ruling regime in Doha. However, the change of positions in Washington brought about the new Qatari realisation of the facts on the ground.

August 6th, 2013, 9:24 am


Sami said:

So Mr. Hardly a Massacre is taking names of expats so he can fine us… Is he going to fine us Assad style? Won’t he dirty up is Zara khakis?

August 6th, 2013, 9:25 am


revenire said:

Reports are circulating ISIS murdered Father Paolo.

August 6th, 2013, 9:36 am


majedkhaldoun said:

Ra-veneer does not believe Mennegh airport has been taken by the rebels,when he sees the sun he does not believe it is the sun, he is living in his dream world.

Mini apple only believe Assad media,which is known to lie,she believes Assad will win

August 6th, 2013, 9:36 am


Akbar Palace said:

Assad’s Stupid Cheerleaders NewZ

You are aware that is a racist term correct?


Since you seem to be the self-appointed “racism police” here, perhaps you shouldn’t make statements like:

Are Zionists ever honest?

August 6th, 2013, 9:45 am


revenire said:

Akbar Palace calling Iranians “towel heads” is calling them a racist term. Asking if all Zionists are liars isn’t.

August 6th, 2013, 10:04 am


revenire said:


SyrPer has learned that the effort to assault and occupy the Mennagh Airbase in Aleppo Province has failed except as to the south side where the command and control center is found . The SAA is in control but is fighting a pitched battle. Reports of SAA deficiency in ammunition are false and are meant to ratchet up the collapsing morale of Obama’s Salafist rodents. We have also been informed that no aircraft uses the base and that no arsenals are to be found there other than the one directly employed by the SAA for its defenders. Wael estimates that the SAA’s 300-400 defenders are well-equipped and will only be withdrawn if the base’s value does not exceed the lives of the defending troops.

Wael also reports that a section of the airbase around the control-center was subjected to a massive suicide bombing from an armored vehicle provided by the British. The drivers of the vehicle were determined to be non-Syrian by monitored communications. The estimated amount of explosives used by these suicide bombers was over 1000 pounds of military-grade TNT. But that is tentative. Our army continues to fight off the rodents as of 8:30 a.m. EDT or 4:30 Damascus time. Wael says that witnesses have seen Syrian fighter jets over the base but details are not available.

The war crimes of David Cameron have not been brought to light sufficiently even as he defies the will of the British public and his own Parliament to not arm the Islamist militants.


August 6th, 2013, 10:29 am


don said:

Italy’s foreign minister says priest missing in Syria abducted by Islamic group in Syria

Emma Bonino told state television Tuesday that the captors appear to be “a local version of al-Qaida,” and that Italy was working to win his release.

Bonino said Italy also was working for the release of an Italian war correspondent held in Syria since April.

August 6th, 2013, 10:59 am


don said:


Syria Conflict Destroys Churches, Desecrates Icons

The devastation is evident everywhere. According to the government telecoms chief Mtanios al-Shaer, “The terrorists destroyed everything 24 hours before the town was liberated, and caused damage of a billion Syrian pounds ($57 million).”

Qusayr had a significant Christian and Muslim population, and both suffered the ransacking of their holy sites. The Greek Catholic Mar Elias Church almost totally destroyed. Though some icons have been recovered, they suffered grievous damage, with burns and tears running through the gilded works of art.

The golden dome of Mar Elias Church is riddled with holes now, and its marble altar has been broken.

Some of the few residents who have stayed in Qusayr remain hopeful for the future as they try to rebuild their shattered lives. A 40-year-old technician Jafaar Nassur, explained, “We have cleaned up our desecrated church, and together we’ll try to return it to the state it should be in with whatever means we have.”

August 6th, 2013, 11:21 am


zoo said:

Morsi, Syria and the Moslem Brotherhood

Muslim Brotherhood and Egyptian Military Enter the Abyss

Revolutionary Egypt: Part 3
by Kim Petersen / August 6th, 201

… Morsi has been an opportunist president who viewed the dire geopolitical situation of the region and foreign interference in its affairs according to the political parameters of the Muslim Brotherhood and their planned expectations to reap benefits if they take this or that position. His actions toward Syria were not as erratic as many believed. Although he called early in his presidency for coordination between Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Iran to resolve the conflict, he never followed through, and his true intention was merely to advance a precise Muslim Brothers agenda in Syria and in the rest of the Arab world. Obvious ties with the Syrian Muslim Brothers, endorsement of the Saudi’s Syria policy so as to decrease their hostility toward his regime, and in the process obtain some financial assistance, as well as implicit endorsement of the policy that the U.S. and Israel designed for Syria and the Arab world were all factors in his decision to sever relations.

Most important, the timing of his declaration to sever relations came about when the popular uprising against his regime began taking serious turns and gaining expanding horizontal momentum. This indicates a calculation to divert attention from his troubles, especially when he involved the Egyptian Army in his plan as when he declared, “The Egyptian people and army are supporting the Syrian uprising.”1

Did the U.S. push Morsi to sever relations with Syria and take a bellicose tone? Given the close relations between the U.S. and the Egyptian Muslim Brothers, such a hypothesis is plausible. We will know that for sure if the upcoming Egyptian government exposes the facts behind Morsi’s decision. This will never happen though. Arab regimes, old and new, never reveal their dealings with the West, the United States, and Israel

August 6th, 2013, 11:22 am


zoo said:

The neighboring of rebels-occupied North Syria with Turkey gets “friendlier” by the day. Arms smuggling is only allowed one way: Turkey to Syria

Thousands of smugglers swamp Turkish border, soldiers injured

11:12 a.m. EDT, August 6, 2013

ANKARA (Reuters) – Eighteen Turkish soldiers were injured on Tuesday when a group of several thousand alleged smugglers clashed with the army as they tried to cross into Turkey from Syria, the military said.

The group of 2,500-3,000 people threw stones at military patrol vehicles on the border at the town of Ogulpinar in Hatay province and refused to disperse after warnings were issued in Turkish and Arabic, the statement said.

August 6th, 2013, 11:31 am


omen said:

i just want to clear this up.

first, allegation:

154. Ghufran said: The coast will indeed be liberated from all foreign fighters, there is no FSA in the area and many terrorists there do not even speak Arabic.

191. mjabali said: When few thousands of those Foreign Jihadis attack villages at dawn forcing the population to flee and a violent reaction from al-Assad we have a huge problem.

192. mjabali said: You supporting foreign Jihadis coming to Alawite villages killing them makes me wonder about when are you going to join them?

here is reality:

So much for people assuming that the Lattakia offensive is comprised of foreigner Jihadis. rebels in video are clearly from Lattakia.

Lattakia accents heard as rebels capture Alawite village in Lattakia. Residents and Shabiha all fled.

August 6th, 2013, 11:32 am


Tara said:


Sorry we can’t diismiss the press and believe a Wael.

August 6th, 2013, 11:34 am


zoo said:


The Mennegh airport has supposedly been taken thanks to your friends, the al Nusra terrorists. It is reported in all the news articles. Rejoice and be proud of having such efficient friends!

August 6th, 2013, 11:35 am


zoo said:

Sheikh Al Buti murderer arrested in March,7340,L-4414493,00.html

A security source in Syria stated that the leader of the al Qaeda-affiliated Jabhat a-Nusra rebel group, was arrested in Damascus for the alleged murder of the senior cleric, Mohamed Said al-Buti, who was close to the Syrian regime.

The source noted that the leader’s arrest was made two months ago, and with him were arrested two of his deputies. The statement was issued after Syrian Prime Minister Waal al-Halki, who said on Monday night that suspects in al-Buti’s killing were arrested last March. (AFP

August 6th, 2013, 11:40 am


Tara said:

The Mennegh liberation was reported by all media outlet but not by Wael…

So I guess it remains controversial..

August 6th, 2013, 11:43 am


zoo said:

Worried by Syrian Kurds growing antagonism, Turkey is obliged to decrease its support to Al Nusra, a support as usual denied by Pinochio-Davutoglu

Amid witness reports of jihadists staying in hotels in Turkish border towns and shuttling back and forth between the two countries, Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) said last week that the jihadists’ suspected infiltration into Turkey was bringing Ankara “under suspicion”.

The party said it would be better to “develop good relations with the Kurds instead of Al-Qaeda and its affiliates”.

“Turkey has never officially declared that it aided Nusra fighters, but it’s clear that the group has been tolerated by the government,” Turan said.

“Now it’s understood that this tolerance will no longer be that generous,” he added.

August 6th, 2013, 11:46 am


omen said:

205. ilya said: @samdagher hears new nuance in Banias story: fleeing rebels killed pro-govt imam, wife, son before govt massacre

claim made by town loyalist who justifies regime massacre.

August 6th, 2013, 11:48 am


zoo said:

Like Turkey, arms smuggling is only allowed on in one direction: Jordan to Syria.

Jordan foils attempt to smuggle weapons from Syria
Aug 06,2013

AMMAN, Aug. 6 (Xinhua) — Jordan’s army said Tuesday that it had thwarted an attempt to smuggle large quantities of weapons from Syria into Jordan, the state-run Petra news agency reported.

The army said it had arrested all those trying to smuggle the weapons, adding that they are all Syrian nationals.

Earlier this week, Jordan’s army thwarted another attempt to smuggle large quantities of drugs and weapons into Jordan from Syria.

August 6th, 2013, 11:55 am


habib said:

The recent Salafist adventure into Lattakia will only result in one thing, backlash against local Sunnis.

The sad part is that the attackers are not even Syrian, but it is Syrian Sunnis that will take the heat. But I guess it is the plan of the Takfiris, to create more division.

August 6th, 2013, 12:37 pm


revenire said:

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

`Alawite villages are now referred to as “government villages” to justify the murder of the villagers and the sectarian cleansing campaign underway by the “secular” Syrian armed groups

“The opposition gained significant ground: they seized at least three or four government villages and three or four [regime] military positions…” (thanks Nir)

August 6th, 2013, 12:47 pm


revenire said:

Omen the Twitter FSA Air Force Captain LOL

August 6th, 2013, 12:49 pm





August 6th, 2013, 12:55 pm



ASSAD, the leader that tried to be glamourous and chick is now a Psycho-Killer in the eyes of the world. Specially in the eyes of those who have been at least once in Syria, for bussiness or for leisure. Syria as a country left deep and lovely impressions , his populations and his legendary hospitality to the visitor, but Assad always remained as a soft dictator. Now is a high profile wild criminal dictator.

August 6th, 2013, 12:58 pm


habib said:

276. omen

Seems the “ethnic cleansing” of the coast didn’t happen then? I fear it will after this, though.

August 6th, 2013, 1:36 pm


omen said:

tara, uzair, so kind of you. i’ve learned a lot for you two. thank you.

here is something to brighten the day:

free sooryia

August 6th, 2013, 1:42 pm


omen said:

289. Seems the “ethnic cleansing” of the coast didn’t happen then? I fear it will after this, though.

after what, habib? what do mean? regime retaliation?

August 6th, 2013, 2:00 pm


Uzair8 said:


Wrong thread.

August 7th, 2013, 8:24 pm


Post a comment

Neoprofit AI Immediate Venture