Rebels Get Missiles; Kurds; Aleppo; Opposition Divided; al-Qaida

Aleppo continues to be the focus of rebel strategy. Watch this AP video

Ghufran writes:

SNC is refusing to participate in Haytham al-Maleh’s conference in Cairo. Al-Maleh said, “I have been tasked with leading a transitional government,” Maleh said, adding that he will begin consultations “with the opposition inside and outside” the country. Maleh, a conservative Muslim, said he was named by a Syrian coalition of “independents with no political affiliation”.

Abdelbasset Seida, the leader of the Syrian National Council, said: “If each group came out alone announcing the formation of a new government without talks, this would end up in having a series of weak governments that don’t represent anyone.” Asaad, the putative commander of the Free Syrian Army called the new coalition “opportunists” seeking to benefit from the rebels’ gains.

More division and fighting over power. Armed rebels had a good day in Aleppo and around it while civilians paid the price. Alarabiya by accident showed an armed rebel using artillery, there are also reports about the use of tanks by the rebels near Saadllah Aljabiri square. This will be far uglier than the fight in Damascus,the damage to Syria’s economy will be enormous. Enjoy the ruins.

Syrian rebels acquire surface-to-air missiles: report
WASHINGTON | Tue Jul 31, 2012

(Reuters) – Rebels fighting to depose Syrian president Bashar al Assad have for the first time acquired a small supply of surface-to-air missiles, according to a news report that a Western official did not dispute. NBC News reported Tuesday night that the rebel Free Syrian Army had obtained nearly two dozen of the weapons, which were delivered to them via neighboring Turkey,…

Following the fall of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, some intelligence experts estimated that as many as 10,000-15,000 MANPADs sets were looted from Libyan government stockpiles. The whereabouts of most of these are unknown….. When the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, the CIA, with Saudi backing, provided sophisticated shoulder-fired Stinger missiles to Islamic militants seeking to oust Soviet troops….

Lebanese columnist Rajeh Khoury predicted: “Syria could plunge into a long protracted civil war that could last years. The civil war in Lebanon, with its much smaller population of five million, lasted 15 years due to foreign interference so Syria would be much more complicated.

Samia Nakhoul for Reuters, “No happy outcome in Syria as conflict turns into proxy war,” – an excellent article

Some fear a Lebanon-style free-for-all, in which armed groups from different sectarian and ideological backgrounds fight for supremacy over territory, turning Syria into a patchwork that condemns its state to failure….

“We most definitely have a proxy war in Syria,” says Ayham Kamel of the Eurasia Group political risk consultancy. “At this point of the conflict it is difficult not to say that the international dimension of the Syrian conflict precedes the domestic one.”

“Syria is an open field now. The day after Assad falls you (will) have all of these different groups with different agendas, with different allegiances, with different states supporting them yet unable to form a coherent leadership.”

Patrick Seale, “The Kurds Stir the Regional Pot”, is the best summation so far. He lays out a brief overview of the main factions among the Kurds and then writes:

…Needless to say, these events have fired the ambitions of some Kurdish militants who imagine that a Kurdish Regional Government might now come to birth in northern Syria, on the model of the one in northern Iraq. The English-language edition of Rudaw (an Iraqi Kurdish periodical), carried a piece on 23 July by a Kurdish journalist, Hiwa Osman, in which he wrote: “The Kurdish Region of Syria? Yes, it is possible. Now is the time to declare it!” A Turkish journalist, Mehmet Ali Birand, went further still when he wrote that “a mega-Kurdish state is being founded,” potentially linking Kurdish enclaves in Turkey, Iraq and Syria.

Turkey is understandably alarmed by this resurgence of expansionist Kurdish goals. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused Syria of giving the PKK ‘custody’ of northern Syria and has warned that Turkey would “not stand idle” in the face of this hostile development. “Turkey is capable of exercising its right to pursue Kurdish rebels inside Syria, if necessary,” he declared. He clearly finds intolerable the prospect of the PKK establishing a safe haven in northern Syria, from which to infiltrate fighters into Turkey. He has sent Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu to Erbil to ask Massoud Barzani — no doubt in forceful terms — what game he thinks he is playing.

There is fevered speculation in the Turkish press that Erdogan is planning a military attack on northern Syria to create a buffer zone, with the twin objectives of defeating and dispersing Syrian Kurdish forces and of creating a foothold, or safe-zone, for Syrian rebels fighting Bashar al-Asad.

What of Syria’s calculations? There are three possible reasons why President Bashar withdrew his troops from the Kurdish border region: He needs the troops for the defence of Damascus and Aleppo; he wants to punish Erdogan for his support of the Syrian opposition; and, he is anxious to conciliate the Kurds, so as to dissuade them from joining the rebels. In fact, he started wooing them some months ago by issuing a presidential decree granting Syrian citizenship to tens of thousands of Kurds — something they had been seeking for more than half a century.

What does Iraq’s Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki think of these developments? He is clearly watching the Syrian crisis with anxious attention. If Asad were to fall and be replaced by an Islamist regime, this could revive the hopes of Iraq’s minority Sunni community — and its Al-Qaida allies — that Maliki and his Shia alliance could also be toppled. Another of Maliki’s worries must be the possible influx into Iraq from Syria of thousands of militant Kurds who would serve to strengthen Kurdish claims to Kirkuk and its oil.

What are the Kurds own objectives? In spite of the concessions Asad has made to them, they have no love for him. But nor do they like the opposition. The PYD is hostile to the Turkish-based Syrian National Council, which it considers a Turkish puppet. More generally, the Kurdish national movement, which is essentially secular, has long been at odds with the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood, and dreads its coming to power in Damascus.

The PYD leader Salih Muslim Muhammad is more philosophical. He was quoted as saying: “The ruling powers in Damascus come and go. For us Kurds, this isn’t so important. What is important is that we Kurds assert our existence.” The Syrian Kurds do not expect to win their independence from the Syrian state. They know that it is not a realistic goal: Kurdish enclaves in Syria are too scattered. They do seek, however, a large measure of autonomy, in which they no longer face discrimination, and in which their rights, both political and cultural, are guaranteed.

Erdogan is no doubt watching how the PYD and the KNC run the Kurdish towns they now control on the Syrian border. If they behave, he will not intervene. But if they start infiltrating fighters into Turkey, he is bound to react forcefully. For its part, the PKK has warned that, if the Turks intervene, it will turn “all of Kurdistan into a war zone.”

Free Syrian Army issues military-led transition plan ( thanks War in Context)
30 Jul 2012

AFP reports: Syria’s rebels distributed on Monday a “national salvation draft” proposal for a political transition in the country, bringing together military and civilian figures for a post-Bashar Al-Assad phase. The draft by the joint command of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) proposes the establishment of a higher defence council charged with creating a presidential […]

Aleppo Now and the Future of Armenians in Syria, by Keith Watenpaugh. – Youtube

Al-Jazeera, 6 June, “Behind the News”
, presented by Fayruz Zayyani, guests: Mustafa Sabbagh, head of the Syrian Business Forum, in the studio; and Syrian economic expert Samir Sayfan, via satellite from Dubai. – SN BBC Monitoring Middle East

Zayyani begins by saying: “Syrian President Bashar al-Asad appointed a new prime minister, and the new government will be tackling the economic file that is filled with problems generated during 18 months of protests.” She asks the following questions: “What is the enormity of the problems facing the Syrian economy? Can the regime tolerate them? Will the economic pressures prompt Al-Asad to make political concessions?”

The programme then carries a two-minute video report by Al-Jazeera correspondent Ibrahim Sabir on the Syrian economic crisis. He says: “Official IMF estimates note that the losses of the Syrian oil sector have reached about $4 billion and the Syrian pound has devalued by 45 per cent in the parallel market and 25 per cent in the official market. The value of stocks dropped by 40 per cent, an indication of the impact of the crisis on the business sector.”

Asked to talk about the Syrian economy, Sabbagh says: “The Syrian economy was totally exhausted prior to the revolution, and the events clearly exposed it more. We are witnessing a total collapse of the Syrian economy,” attributing the problem to the ruling party. He adds: “I believe that the current economic indicators are frightening with regard to the competitive economy and the basic economic status in general.”

Asked to explain how the Syrian revolution affected the economy and the main sectors that have been greatly harmed, Su’ayfan says: “One of the main problems is the regime’s weak management of the state and the economy, and one of the characteristics of the Syrian administration is that it has been accustomed to bringing in officials whom we call ‘unknown people’; that is, persons lacking history, efficiencies, experience, opinions, or stands.” He adds that these officials listen to what they are told and obey orders only. Concerning the impact of events on the economy, he says: “The impact is enormous due to the current security operations and the economic sanctions, which together created a difficult situation.” He explains that tourism, for instance, which yielded 11 or 12 per cent of the gross national product has completely collapsed, and the transport sector has greatly retreated due to the suspension of many industries and the increasing number of security checkpoints throughout the country. He adds that the oil sector retreated by 40 per cent due to the departure of foreign companies and Syria’s inability to export this commodity, reiterating that all these factors caused prices to hike and increased unemployment, which reached 30 per cent.

Asked what actions the new government will take to confront this situation, Sabbagh says that the new government is totally rejected, because it was the product of illegitimate elections. He adds: “The latest Syrian Central Bank report was published last year one month after the beginning of the revolution, at which time the bank’s assets of foreign currency reserves were estimated at $17.6 billion, but the bank has suspended publishing its monthly reports ever since.” He expresses belief that these reserves decreased by $5 billion, saying: “Accordingly, we are on the verge of witnessing a major crisis.” He reiterates that the unemployment rate exceeds 40 per cent at present, which means that the situation is very scary and tragic.

Asked what makes the Syrian regime capable of maintaining economic balance, even apparently, and whether its Russian and Iranian allies are the main factors enabling it to achieve this, Su’ayfan says: “The Syrian regime’s remaining in power in such a manner depends on two factor s: The stock that Syria previously had in possession and its ability to produce food commodities without external help. However, what really keeps the regime strong are the security forces and the army.”

Zayyani notes that the Syrian Business Forum has allocated $300 million to support the Syrian revolution, and she asks Sabbagh to explain how this fund can affect the life of citizens who are greatly suffering from the current crisis. Sabbagh says that announcing the allocation of this amount of money is to convey a very clear message to the regime that “the Syrian business community does not support this regime, as it has alleged,” reiterating that this community comprises very well-known businessmen and that Syrian businessmen have been doing well abroad following the regime’s crackdown on them inside Syria. He adds: “The establishment of this fund took place openly and the money spent from this fund so far has exceeded $100 million or even close to $150 million.” He notes that the humanitarian situation in Syria is critical, particularly as some 1.5 million Syrians have been forced to migrate within Syria only, and that had it not been for the assistance they receive, including the forum’s assistance, the situation would have been much worse. He emphasizes that the $300 million is not the maximum ceiling of this fund and that the expected contributions will greatly exceed this figure.

Concerning the role of Syria’s allies, Su’ayfan says that “the real financial support for the Syrian regime comes mainly from Iran, then comes Iraq, which has opened its markets for Syrian exports.” He adds that Lebanon helped execute some financial transactions, circumventing the economic sanctions imposed on Syria, reiterating that Russia provided political support, enabling the regime to remain in power. He explains that Russia hinted recently at the possibility of changing its stance on Al-Asad and supporting the political transition when he steps down from power. Asked for how long the regime can continue to show strength, he says: “If Russia, in particular, alters its stand, the time for the regime to remain in power will be limited to a few months only; let us say two or three months, at which time the regime will be obliged to accept a political solution.”

Asked until when the economic pressures and undeclared political deals will impact the Syrian regime’s current stand, Sabbagh says that the Syrian people have proved that they are determined to proceed along the path of the revolution, and it appears that they have succeeded in forcing Russia to reconsider its stand; thus, necessitating the regime to find an outlet. Concerning the economic pressures, he says: “The Iranian economic situation is not good also due to sanctions imposed on the country and the crisis it is witnessing.” He calls on Russian businessmen to make some recalculations and pressure their government, saying: “Frankly speaking, Syria will witness enormous reconstruction projects, and those who supported the revolution will have a big share of these projects.”

Asked how the economic factor can impact the situation in Syria, Su’ayfan says that this factor will affect the capability of the regime to grant benefits to others, particularly Syrian businessmen, reiterating: “When the regime becomes unable to provide stability, security, food, medication, clothes, housing, and good standards of living, and when it becomes the cause of instability, difficult conditions, and inability to provide benefits, it will certainly lose its legitimacy. The turning of businessmen against the regime recently and the participation of Damascus and Aleppo in the revolution’s mobility through the strike that they staged are another form of expressing such a stance.”    Source: Al-Jazeera TV, Doha, in Arabic 1830 gmt 6 Jun 12

 Al-Qaida turns tide for rebels in battle for eastern Syria – Ghaith Abdul-Ahad

In his latest exclusive dispatch from Deir el-Zour province, Ghaith Abdul-Ahad meets fighters who have left the Free Syrian Army for the discipline and ideology of global jihad

A member of a jihadist group sprays the slogan ‘No Islam without Jihad’ in Arabic on the wall at a border crossing with Turkey. Photograph: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images

As they stood outside the commandeered government building in the town of Mohassen, it was hard to distinguish Abu Khuder’s men from any other brigade in the Syrian civil war, in their combat fatigues, T-shirts and beards.

But these were not average members of the Free Syrian Army. Abu Khuder and his men fight for al-Qaida. They call themselves the ghuraba’a, or “strangers”, after a famous jihadi poem celebrating Osama bin Laden’s time with his followers in the Afghan mountains, and they are one of a number of jihadi organisations establishing a foothold in the east of the country now that the conflict in Syria has stretched well into its second bloody year.

They try to hide their presence. “Some people are worried about carrying the [black] flags,” said Abu Khuder. “They fear America will come and fight us. So we fight in secret. Why give Bashar and the west a pretext?” But their existence is common knowledge in Mohassen. Even passers-by joke with the men about car bombs and IEDs.

According to Abu Khuder, his men are working closely with the military council that commands the Free Syrian Army brigades in the region. “We meet almost every day,” he said. “We have clear instructions from our [al-Qaida] leadership that if the FSA need our help we should give it. We help them with IEDs and car bombs. Our main talent is in the bombing operations.” Abu Khuder’s men had a lot of experience in bomb-making from Iraq and elsewhere, he added.

Abu Khuder spoke later at length. He reclined on a pile of cushions in a house in Mohassen, resting his left arm which had been hit by a sniper’s bullet and was wrapped in plaster and bandages. Four teenage boys kneeled in a tight crescent in front of him, craning their necks and listening with awe. Other villagers in the room looked uneasy.

Abu Khuder had been an officer in a mechanised Syrian border force called the Camel Corps when he took up arms against the regime. He fought the security forces with a pistol and a light hunting rifle, gaining a reputation as one of the bravest and most ruthless men in Deir el-Zour province and helped to form one of the first FSA battalions.

He soon became disillusioned with what he saw as the rebel army’s disorganisation and inability to strike at the regime, however. He illustrated this by describing an attempt to attack the government garrison in Mohassen. Fortified in a former textile factory behind concrete walls, sand bags, machine-gun turrets and armoured vehicles, the garrison was immune to the rebels’ puny attempt at assault.

“When we attacked the base with the FSA we tried everything and failed,” said Abu Khuder. “Even with around 200 men attacking from multiple fronts they couldn’t injure a single government soldier and instead wasted 1.5m Syrian pounds [£14,500] on firing ammunition at the walls.”

Then a group of devout and disciplined Islamist fighters in the nearby village offered to help. They summoned an expert from Damascus and after two days of work handed Abu Khuder their token of friendship: a truck rigged with two tonnes of explosives.

Two men drove the truck close to the gate of the base and detonated it remotely. The explosion was so large, Abu Khuder said, that windows and metal shutters were blown hundreds of metres, trees were ripped up by their roots and a huge crater was left in the middle of the road.

The next day the army left and the town of Mohassen was free.

“The car bomb cost us 100,000 Syrian pounds and fewer than 10 people were involved [in the operation],” he said. “Within two days of the bomb expert arriving we had it ready. We didn’t waste a single bullet.

“Al-Qaida has experience in these military activities and it knows how to deal with it.”

After the bombing, Abu Khuder split with the FSA and pledged allegiance to al-Qaida’s organisation in Syria, the Jabhat al Nusra or Solidarity Front. He let his beard grow and adopted the religious rhetoric of a jihadi, becoming a commander of one their battalions.

“The Free Syrian Army has no rules and no military or religious order. Everything happens chaotically,” he said. “Al-Qaida has a law that no one, not even the emir, can break.

“The FSA lacks the ability to plan and lacks military experience. That is what [al-Qaida] can bring. They have an organisation that all countries have acknowledged.

“In the beginning there were very few. Now, mashallah, there are immigrants joining us and bringing their experience,” he told the gathered people. “Men from Yemen, Saudi, Iraq and Jordan. Yemenis are the best in their religion and discipline and the Iraqis are the worst in everything – even in religion.”

At this, one man in the room – an activist in his mid-30s who did not want to be named – said: “So what are you trying to do, Abu Khuder? Are you going to start cutting off hands and make us like Saudi? Is this why we are fighting a revolution?”

“[Al-Qaida’s] goal is establishing an Islamic state and not a Syrian state,” he replied. “Those who fear the organisation fear the implementation of Allah’s jurisdiction. If you don’t commit sins there is nothing to fear.”

Religious rhetoric

Religious and sectarian rhetoric has taken a leading role in the Syrian revolution from the early days. This is partly because of the need for outside funding and weapons, which are coming through well-established Muslim networks, and partly because religion provides a useful rallying cry for fighters, with promises of martyrdom and redemption.

Almost every rebel brigade has adopted a Sunni religious name with rhetoric exalting jihad and martyrdom, even when the brigades are run by secular commanders and manned by fighters who barely pray.

“Religion is a major rallying force in this revolution – look at Ara’our [a rabid sectarian preacher], he is hysterical and we don’t like him but he offers unquestionable support to the fighters and they need it,” the activist said later.

Another FSA commander in Deir el-Zour city explained the role of religion in the uprising: “Religion is the best way to impose discipline. Even if the fighter is not religious he can’t disobey a religious order in battle.”…

“On Sunday, Panetta predicted that the crackdown in Aleppo will prove “a nail in Assad’s coffin” by turning even more people against the government.”

Washington’s seamless transition in Syria is an illusion — and bad policy
Geoffrey Aronson, Foreign Policy

…The limitations of Syria’s political leaders across the spectrum have been exacerbated by the decisions of the international community. The first error was to see Syria through the lens of an idealized Arab Spring — inaccurately branded as a twitter-fueled democratic revolution against autocracy. The second was to frame the rules of the game as a zero-sum military contest between Assad and his opponents. The third error was to sabotage through faint support the option of international support for a political transition. By doing so, both the regime and its opponents were encouraged to embrace what each does best. By acting in this manner, what began as a limited revolt against the center now threatens the very viability of state itself.

The regime and its opponents are locked into a race to the bottom. The international community, driven by its own competing interests, is feasting off of this grisly spectacle….

Despite recent rebel gains, Syrian civil war far from over
From Ivan Watson, CNN
July 31, 2012 –

….The rebels also have been able to establish growing enclaves in northern Syria and attempted to seize a number of key border crossings last week. They already control much of the main western highway from Aleppo to the Turkish border.

But on Tuesday, Syrian forces clashed with “armed terrorist groups” on the outskirts of Aleppo and destroyed nine armored vehicles “with all terrorists inside,” state-run TV reported.

In several neighborhoods, those who remained were left without phone, Internet or electricity service as tanks shelled the city, according to Deama, an activist in the city. CNN isn’t using her full name because disclosing it could put her in danger.

“We’re afraid they are going to do something worse. Usually, they will cut off connections and isolate these neighborhoods more when they are about to make something worse,” Deama said Monday.

And in Tunisia, his first stop on a visit to the Middle East, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told CNN that al-Assad “knows he’s in trouble, and it’s just matter of time before he has to go.”

Asked what he’d say to the embattled Syrian leader, Panetta said, “I would say if you want to be able to protect yourself and your family, you better get the hell out now.”

The United States is providing nonlethal aid to the rebels, including communications gear. Other countries are providing more direct military aid, Panetta said, “so there is no question that one way or another, they are getting the support they need in order to continue this fight.”

Aleppo residents have mixed reactions to Syria rebels
Reuters’ Erika Solomon has been speaking to residents of Aleppo who have differing views of the rebels:

“I would say 99.9 percent of the people aren’t fasting. How can you fast when you hear mortars and artillery hitting the areas nearby and wondering if you will be next?,” said Jumaa, a 45-year old construction worker with deep wrinkles etched into his leathery skin. “We have hardly any power or water, our wives and kids have left us here to watch the house and have gone somewhere safer. It’s a sad Ramadan.” Despite that, Jumaa is excited to see rebels on the streets of Syria’s second city. “My spirits are high. Seeing them from my doorstep makes me feel the regime is finally falling.”

Crouched on the next stoop, his neighbour sees it differently. “All we have now is have chaos,” Amr grumbles. Some of the men object angrily. “But they are fighting to free us from oppression,” one says. Amr shakes his head. “I’m still oppressed, stuck between two sides making me to choose. I just want to live my life.” …

Whenever rebels idle their trucks on the street, residents come up asking for help to get gasoline for their cars. Many beg the fighters to open more bakeries so the breadlines move faster, and spare people an exhausting hours-long wait in the hot sun. But some in line nod approvingly. “They don’t let anyone cut in, no one is better than anyone else now. The bakers aren’t allowed to hike prices on us,” says Umm Khaled, her face wrapped in a conservative black veil. “For the first time in this city, I feel like all of us are equal.”

Down the street, a crowd of men gather to watch rebels inspecting a burned out police station they stormed last week. Papers, stray shoes and police caps litter the charred building. One man shakes his head as he watches the scene. “We don’t even know these fighters, they don’t talk to us much. But people here just accept whoever has power,” one man whispered. “I’m not with anyone, I am with the side of truth. Right now, that is only God.”….


The Independent’s Kim Sengupta has been in Salaheddin, in the midst of the government offensive to clear the main opposition stronghold in Aleppo and writes that the state’s claim to be in complete control of the area is “obviously false”.

Standing on the road where most of the fighting was taking place, Sheikh Taufik Shiabuddin, the district’s rebel commander, said he welcomed a chance to refute “Assad’s lies”. He counted off the triumphs so far on the fingers of his hand. “We have destroyed two tanks, seven armoured carriers and killed 200 of their soldiers. They had attacked us with a force of 3,000 and they cannot get in. We shall be going forward to them soon, the enemy is suffering,” he said to chants of “Takhbir” (call to God) from his followers, who gathered around him.

The regime’s forces may be suffering, but they still appeared to have a lot left in reserve, judging by the regularity with which mortar and light-artillery rounds came whizzing over. A helicopter gunship made several passes overhead, but it would have been difficult for the pilot to pick out targets in such confined quarters and it flew off to attack elsewhere.

Looking from the fourth-floor balcony of an abandoned flat, curtained like almost every other balcony in the area, one could see a row of eight green Syrian army tanks, possibly Russian made T-55s, with their barrels pointed towards the streets of Salaheddine. “They have been firing from the tanks, but all they are hitting are empty buildings” said the Sheikh’s brother, Ahmed. “We have lost some people for sure, 15 martyrs and 40 wounded. They have tried to bring their tanks in here and we’ve hit them hard. Assad’s people know we are waiting.”….

Syria is different through Russian eyes
By Andrei Nekrasov

It is normal that news headlines differ from country to country, but the western world might be interested to know that Syria has not been among the main news items in Russia. If there is a report on an event that is all but impossible to ignore, such as the massacre in Tremseh on July 12 , it is like this one from “Syrian insurgents have been instructed to kill as many people as possible.”
The Russian word boyeviki, used to describe the rebel fighters, is less neutral than “insurgents” and is just one step away from bandits or terrorists. It passed from slang into the mass media during the war in Chechnya in the 1990s as a way of branding the Chechen separatist fighters. It is also worth noting in the report cited above the use of the words “instructed to kill”. They are intended to hint clearly that the opposition are acting on the orders of some invisible masters.The report, which was on prime time TV, featured Anastassia Popova, a young and charismatic reporter. She provided “evidence” of the rebels killing innocent people in Tremseh, while claiming that the majority of those killed by the army were armed fighters and deserters. The reporter also claimed that the UN authorities were hampering her crew because of its country of origin.
Russia’s government is stubbornly supporting Bashar al-Assad and, true to Soviet-era traditions, it is unashamedly using the media it controls to justify its policy. Vladimir Putin’s control of information is not absolute. The internet has so far been almost completely free. However, the truth is Mr Putin does not need to exert control over public opinion on Syria.
Most people in Russia see the fighting there as a proxy war between their country and the west. While the humanitarian crisis receives little attention, the diplomacy is the focus of regular and detailed reports. The “struggle for peace” of foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and Russia’s UN mission, against “aggressive western powers bent on force”, are what we mostly hear about in reports on Syria.
The government encourages this proxy war narrative, as it has a vested interest in portraying itself as the defender of a nation’s geopolitical position against the west’s perceived global expansion. While many of Mr Putin’s other policies are increasingly under attack, most Russians share the divisive world view that he projects. Even the independent internet-based media’s “objective” reporting tends to present Mr Assad’s version first and as fully legitimate. That is not a result of any direct pressure from the government….
By David Pollock – WINEP
A sudden political shift among Syria’s three million Kurds, who now control much of the country’s border with Turkey, provides an opportunity for the United States to better coordinate its policy with regional allies and to encourage the Syrian opposition to respect minority rights.
While world attention focuses on bombings and clashes in Damascus and Aleppo, Syria’s Kurds buried their internal differences in mid-July, with Iraqi Kurdish help and Turkey’s blessing, and then promptly kicked Syrian regime forces out of their territory. This is a major blow to the regime, potentially clearing the northern approaches to Aleppo for opposition forces. But Kurdish relations with the rest of the Syrian opposition remain a deeply divisive issue.
Syria’s Kurds have lately been sharply split between two major movements: the Party of Unity and Democracy (PYD), founded in 2003, which collaborated both with the Bashar al-Assad regime and with the violently anti-Turkish Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK); and the Kurdish National Council of Syria (KNC), an amalgam formed in October 2011 of fifteen local parties opposed to both Assad and the PKK. Over the past year, as the wider Syrian revolution intensified, these two movements often came to blows in Syria’s Kurdish regions. Previous attempts to reconcile them, notably in January and again in May 2012, came to naught; their differences were simply too deep, and their supporters too evenly matched, to make a lasting agreement possible.
Against this inauspicious background, in early July the president of the neighboring Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq, Masoud Barzani, summoned Syrian Kurdish leaders from both main rival factions to his headquarters in Salahaddin, Iraq, just outside Erbil, in yet another attempt to hammer out an accord. This time the attempt succeeded, despite reported opposition from die-hard PKK supporters both inside the PYD and among the Syrian Kurdish PKK fighters in the Qandil mountains near the Iraq-Turkey-Syria borders. Underlying this surprising success is the increasingly prevalent perception, even among his erstwhile allies, that Syria’s President Assad is losing his grip on power.
The PYD-KNC agreement signed July 11 has not been officially published, but its main points were read out to the author in Istanbul two days later by one of the senior participants in the negotiations. First, the PYD and the KNC will stop fighting each other, and instead join together in a new Supreme Kurdish Council for their region of Syria. Second, the PYD will henceforth focus exclusively on the Kurdish issue inside Syria, not across the border in Turkey — clearly implying that the party now promises to cease any practical support to the PKK. Third, the newly unified Syrian Kurds will expel Syrian government officials and security forces from their area — where, until just two weeks ago, many regime institutions had been operating almost normally, despite the turmoil elsewhere in the country.
So far, against all previous expectations, this intra-Kurdish accord is largely holding. Syria’s Kurds have stopped fighting against each other. The PYD’s break with the PKK is not definitive, but events and interested onlookers are pushing in that direction. And within the past two weeks, Syrian regime forces withdrew or were expelled from one Kurdish town after another, although some skirmishes are still being reported in Qamishli and other eastern border areas. Some local Kurds are helping Aleppo resist the Syrian regime siege, though on the whole Syria’s Kurds are now concentrating on securing their own areas.
The Syrian opposition and the Kurdish parties, however, remain sharply at odds over Kurdish demands for recognition as a distinct people inside Syria, with their own cultural and linguistic rights under some form of “political decentralization.” According to senior Syrian opposition figures, tribal sheikhs, and Free Syrian Army (FSA) commanders in Antakya and Istanbul, if the Kurds get autonomy, then what about Syria’s multitude of other minorities? Moreover, these figures say, Turkey will strive to block any such Arab-Kurdish agreement in Syria.
So far, the Syrian National Council (SNC), still the main organized opposition group, shows no sign of budging from this position. On July 22, its president, Abdul Basset Sieda, himself of Kurdish origin, met with Turkish foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu and then issued a contemptuous and misleading declaration: “The Syrian regime has handed over the region to the PKK or the PYD. The areas where these Kurdish factions have raised their flags are those Bashar al-Assad gave them. The Kurdish people are not on the side of these two groups, but on the side of the revolution. But some sides have their own agenda which does not serve the Syrian national issue.”
To some extent, according to private accounts of Syrian opposition deliberations, this attitude reflects deference to perceived Turkish wishes. But that is precisely why there is now some hope for greater SNC flexibility on this issue: Turkish policy toward the Syrian Kurdish question is quietly shifting, away from automatically associating Kurdish political activism in that country with the PKK terrorist threat to Turkey.
Any Kurdish issue is a very sensitive one in Turkey, and the new developments right across the Syrian border are no exception. The Turkish media are, as usual, sharply divided on this matter. Reporters and columnists who support the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) stress the potential benefits for Turkey of a rapprochement with Syria’s Kurds, while the opposition press is raising the specter of another hostile, pro-PKK front. Official Turkish statements promise to respond firmly to any Syrian-based PKK provocations, and the local press has reported additional military movements southward from Sanliurfa, toward the Kurdish areas across the Syrian border.
But Turkish official statements also subtly suggest that Ankara will tolerate advances by Syria’s own Kurdish groups – if it sees clear signs that the PYD has abandoned the PKK. On July 22, a Turkish government source was quoted as saying that “we will closely monitor whether the PYD acts with other Kurdish groups or not.” Similarly, on July 25, for instance, Turkish prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that “We will not allow the terrorist organization to pose a threat to Turkey in Syria; it is impossible for us to tolerate the PKK’s cooperation with the PYD.” This relatively cautious and discriminating response can be partly credited to Turkey’s excellent working relationship with Masoud Barzani, who brokered the latest Syrian Kurdish agreement and continues to play a key role in its implementation. Accordingly, this week Davutoglu is scheduled to meet with Barzani in Erbil to discuss coordinating the next steps in this very delicate policy adjustment.
It is good news that Syria’s Kurds are moving to patch up with each other and with two neighboring U.S. friends — with the KRG, and even with Turkey — while turning against Assad’s regime. Ironically, however, this important positive shift is also raising tensions with the majority Arab groups inside the Syrian opposition, and between the KRG and the Arab-dominated central government in Baghdad, which has sent forces to the border area to confront local KRG units.
U.S. policy should do more than just urge Arabs and Kurds to reconcile their differences in each country. Ideally, Washington should advise Syrian opposition figures that, since they need to attract the country’s minorities, their best course is to engage more creatively with those groups — not try to impose on them some particular “vision” of a future Syria, however “pluralistic.” Conversely, the United States should encourage Syrian and Iraqi Kurds to support the Syrian opposition in every possible way. The price, well worth paying, is for Washington to adjust its policy by prodding the Syrian opposition toward greater recognition of Kurdish rights — and offering increased U.S. support to the Syrian opposition as a crucial incentive.
Looking further ahead, U.S. help in planning for a post-Assad transition should pay urgent attention to deconflicting Arab and Kurdish political claims and aspirations inside Syria. This is every bit as acute an issue as the much more widely recognized Alawite one; the Kurds are about the same percentage of Syria’s total population, and many millions more Kurds in Iraq and Turkey make the involvement of Syria’s neighbors much more likely. At a minimum, working with Turkey, the KRG, and others, the United States should strive to avert violent Turkish-Kurdish or Arab-Kurdish conflict in Syria or on its borders. At the same time, despite its more limited leverage, the United States should urge Baghdad more forcefully to defy Iran, reconcile with the KRG, and abandon support for the Assad regime.
Could This Man Lead Syria After Assad?
Defector and Syrian Gen. Manaf Tlas is being groomed to lead after Bashar al-Assad falls. But will anyone follow?By |Posted Tuesday, July 31, 2012,

Defected Syrian Gen. Manaf Tlass
Photograph by Adem Altan/GettyImages.

“Bashar is president or we burn down the country!” That is the menacing message being scrawled on burnt houses and bullet-pocked stone walls by pro-Assad forces as they make their way across Syria. The graffiti often appears following an assault by the Shabiha, an Alawite militia drawn from the same sectarian community as the country’s elite. Days into the regime’s siege of Aleppo, President Bashar al-Assad is now sending the same message to Syria’s financial capital and largest city. Convoys of regime forces have encircled Aleppo, and Air Force jets and helicopters are now pounding rebel-controlled neighborhoods. “Aleppo will be the last battle waged by the Syrian army to crush the terrorists,” boasted Al Watan, a pro-regime newspaper, “and after that Syria will emerge from the crisis.”

The rebels are confident, too. They have stock piled ammunition, medical supplies, and called in reinforcements from insurgent battalions across northern Syria, as well as sympathizers from abroad.  “Tunisians, Egyptians, and Libyans,” said one activist, who says he saw fighters from these countries in a mountain camp outside the city. The battle for Aleppo is shaping up to be a decisive moment in Syria’s civil war, as the Syrian army carries out a full military assault on a city of 2 million people.

Some of the most critical blows to Assad’s regime have come far from the battlefield. In recent months, Assad’s top political, diplomatic, and military circles have suffered a number of prominent defections. None may be more significant than Brig. Gen. Manaf Tlas, the most prominent military defector thus far. The Sunni Muslim general has ties to both the Alawite establishment and the military elite. A figure as senior as Tlas may seem late to have quit the regime—he defected on June 6, 2012—but his timing may be perfect. Arab and Western governments are rushing to put together a transitional strategy for post-Assad Syria. Tlas appears to be backed by Saudi Arabia and, according to the Wall Street Journal, U.S. officials are in discussions with Middle East governments to place Tlas at the “center of a political transition.” “If he’s pushed by desperate big powers, its wishful thinking,” says Salman Shaikh, director of the Brookings Doha Center. “They are scrambling. They’ve chosen the wrong man with a very dubious background and history.”….

Comments (407)


The situation is really getting out of control. Logistical support from outside to the FSA is producing results but not enough once again. Chaos spreads and no real leader or centre of opposition power is showing leadership that can beneffit the country. Chaos cannot be lead.
Assad is playing the game he and only he started. It’s called “ME OR CHAOS”. Even if Assad is losing internal supports day after day, probably SFA is not beneffiting enough since there is not a clear political centre to unite efforts where defetors can go and say: I defect and want to get some reward in terms of future responsabilities in the new state.

US and other friends of syrian opposition should finally express clear support for a government in exile and a new Constitution. In this way FSA should know what is going to be the result if they finally succeed.

We are in the hands of Assad, Iran and Russia. Probably Rusia is getting paid for desintegration of Syria. Probably Iran also is interested in destroying Syria before he loses the Assad Satrapie. If Assad and specially syrian regim officials care for Syria they will defect. If not, then an enormous tragedy will come on Syria and Syria will probably never exist again as one country.

History books would then talk about how Assad lead the country to chaos and autodestruction.

Regarding Manaf Talass it would be a way to stop the blood bath but it sound as a joke. After many fighters lost their lifes heres it comes the best friend of Assad and reinstall himself and the Army as pain power in Syria. Soft dictatorship? Would we need another 40 years to make another step towards freedom and democracy. Do really arabs deserve this?

August 1st, 2012, 4:30 pm


Observer said:

This is from Addounia TV
الرئيس الفريق بشار الأسد القائد العام للجيش والقوات المسلحة : الجيش العربي السوري خاض ولا يزال معارك الشرف والبطولة

I do not know in what universe he lives in. But with increasing defections I do not know of which armed forces he is talking about.

It is distressing to see people executed summarily by the FSA members. I had hoped that there would be true justice not mob lynching.

IF they get SAM missiles the air advantadge will be weakened then he will use massive artillery with massive destruction.

August 1st, 2012, 4:44 pm


habib said:

“By David Pollock – WINEP

While world attention focuses on bombings and clashes in Damascus and Aleppo, Syria’s Kurds buried their internal differences in mid-July, with Iraqi Kurdish help and Turkey’s blessing, and then promptly kicked Syrian regime forces out of their territory. This is a major blow to the regime, potentially clearing the northern approaches to Aleppo for opposition forces.”

LOL, what is this guy smoking? Turkey’s blessing? Syrian forces kicked out? Major misinterpretation of events there. Shows how clueless the Americans are in this, and why they’ll suffer in the end, if the Salafists obtain power.

1980s Afghanistan, here we come!

August 1st, 2012, 4:48 pm




Al Qaeda Branch for Cham Countries’ leader Bachar Al Assad’s beheading here we come.

I use to take hashish to sympatize with salafists but tonight I took heroin to sympathize with Bashar al Jakhsh Al Wakhsh.

August 1st, 2012, 4:53 pm


Alan said:

War crime? Syrian rebels execute POWs (GRAPHIC VIDEO)

August 1st, 2012, 4:54 pm


Aldendeshe said:

its wishful thinking,” says Salman Shaikh, director of the Brookings Doha Center. “They are scrambling. They’ve chosen the wrong man with a very dubious background and history.”….

DESPARADO…..Wait till the big Zio-losers get even more desperate and push Syrian nation robber Tlass, or his ilk’s through and SNP sides with Assad, go on Syrian T.V. and asks for IRGC and Hezbollah to come save Syria from corrupt to the bone Westerners/Zionists/Bedouins. I tell you, just like a Bedouins used to it, they will flop on the face, hands down, the proper way.

I RATHER HAVE BRAIN THAN MONEY, so ZIO-Bedouins has ZERO chance ruling Syria by appointed corrupt puppets, one that keeps on robbing Syria in an even bigger position and ways. BIG F***g FAT ZERO.

Let me guess, Tlass will eliminate all Syria’s engineers and Medical personnel, allow free range for Mossad/Alciada to set security shop for Tlass, he keeps stealing from Syrians as long as he lets them kill all Syrians and dismantle the country down to their OWN oil and gas wells, just as they did Iraq.

Fellow Syrians, you are poor because you were robbed by RIFFAT, KHADDAM, TLASS, SHAHABI and the rest of the Paris property Juntas. These are not your saviors, they are your enemies, and they will never be rehabilitated, they will always be Syria’s enemy.

لالقيادة سورية الحرة من عملاء الاستعمار الصهيوني الامبريالي الغربي
سورية الحرة هي سورية النزيهة

August 1st, 2012, 5:30 pm


Syrian Nationalist Party said:

طلاس – هي العيلة كلها عملاء الاستعمار اللامريكي الصهيوني الامبريالي

August 1st, 2012, 5:36 pm


irritated said:


Do I sense increased panic and hysteria in you last comments? the effect of the drug?

That’s the time for you to treat the US and the Syria “friends” of donkeys…

August 1st, 2012, 5:48 pm



Tafas, Bosra and Maarat Nouaman now being hardly bombarded. Many other cities all around Syria have been being bombarded all day long today.

If Assad succeeds in this fight, Syrian cities will be completely destroyed. Hate and anger will be so high that Assad will have to kill one by one all families and parents of fighters, innocents and children killed in his “liberation” and “reform” of Syria.

After war Rami Makhlouf will find hundreds of lots of land free of buildings so he can build new city centers in Hama, Homs, Daraa, Maarra, Bosra, Zabadani, Idleb, Jisr Shoghour, Aleppo suburbs and Damascus suburbs.

Sometimes I think there is an aim of real estate speculating, since I do not understand why Assad is bombing for weeks and weeks centers of villages that are absoltely desolated and abandoned.

August 1st, 2012, 5:51 pm


omen said:

Syrian MP killed publicly by FSA firing squad

But the term “Shabiha” has broadened since the uprising started 17 months ago in Syria. Now it covers all the “unlicensed” enforcers doing the dirty work of the regime. They commit crimes that can be officially denied by Damascus. The state then blames Shabiha actions on the work of the “armed gangs”.

Here in Aleppo, activists tell me, the Shabiha are not Alawite – they are Sunni – and they are often members of a tribe called Barri. I can’t verify the following information myself, as I am moving around Aleppo province.

The story I am told goes like this: The Barri family is a big, old Sunni tribe, originally from areas on the outskirts of what is now the South East of the modern city – Bab al-Nayab. […]

These days in Aleppo they are seen as the second, shadowy arm of the state. Some of them were jailed for drugs crimes, but so enormous was their turnover that even inside jail they kept their operations going, ending up as influential drug lords – behind bars.

At the beginning of the uprising, the Assad regime allegedly did a deal with some members of the Barri family, offering them amnesty in return for loyalty and putting this drugs mafia at the service of the state. And – I’m told – they were given arms and salaries to stay loyal.

Activists tell me they are responsible for assassinations, robberies, extortion against wealthy Aleppo business people for funds “to suppress the revolution”, hostage -taking and the attacks on students at Aleppo University.

Now – apparently – the FSA are closing in on the family; they have already taken and killed the head of the family Zeino al-Barri and one of his brothers or cousins.

This man is an MP in the Syrian Parliament, assigned a seat in this year’s elections. The parliamentary seat is widely seen as a ‘reward’ for his services to the regime since the uprising.

Assessments here say that his killing will cause great consternation among the security services in Damascus, let alone Aleppo, who counted on this family to do much of their dirty work.

August 1st, 2012, 5:53 pm


zoo said:

The Saudis are sponsoring a UN assembly resolution that will condemn the UNSC for not condemning Assad who condemned Saudi Arabia for its blatant interference in a country part of the UN….. etc… etc…

The UN general assembly said on Tuesday it would hold a meeting on the crisis in Syria this week and diplomats say it will probably vote on a Saudi-drafted resolution condemning the security council for failing to take action against Damascus.

August 1st, 2012, 5:56 pm


irritated said:

#8 Sandro Loewe

If Assad succeeds in this fight, Syrian cities will be completely destroyed.

Are you considering that Assad may succeed in this fight? I thought you have repeated over and over he was a loser.

August 1st, 2012, 6:00 pm


Son of Damascus said:

Another massacre happened today, this time in Reef Dimashq. Jidayat Artouz is not very far away from Damascus proper (West on Mazzeh Autostrad), close Qatana.

These unfortunate and heinous crimes were committed after the town sustained heavy shelling from Assad forces. Many of the civilians show signs that they were arrested and then executed (Hands tied behind their backs).

Video of the funeral:

August 1st, 2012, 6:04 pm


zoo said:

Is Turkey getting ready for the ‘tactical’ retreat of the FSA and the armed gangs ?

Turkey ready for influx of 100,000 from Syria

KİLİS – Hürriyet Daily News
Turkey is putting all hands on deck to prepare for a possible cascade of refugees escaping from Syria’s violence by doubling the capacity of its border tent cities
Turkey is working to increase the capacity of its camps to shelter Syrian refugees to a total of 100,000 in the following weeks. Five new shelter camps with a total capacity of 50,000 people are being built in cities in southern and southeastern Turkey.

August 1st, 2012, 6:06 pm


omen said:

pundits who argue syria will become a failed state themselves have blood on their hands for having argued against support of the rebels early in the uprising.

early support would have driven this conflict sooner to conclusion, lessening the number of people killed.

lebanon devolved into a 15 year civil war because of the assad regime. that should tell people the regime has long been the root of violence, is the cause of instability that needs to be taken out.

predictors of future failed state need to look to how people have self organized in rebel held territories, where security have been put in place, where even elections have been held. and then explain why this level of organization should be disregarded.

August 1st, 2012, 6:09 pm


habib said:


I’ll leave you alone with that own-goal.

11. irritated

If Assad and all of his supporters evaporated tomorrow, the internal fight between opposition gangs would continue anyway.

Take home message is, Syria will be laid to waste whatever happens.

14. omen

So you’re telling us Libya is a success?

August 1st, 2012, 6:13 pm


zoo said:

Davutoglu’s pressure on Barzani: hot air for Turkish comsumption

Since Barzani’s influence over Syrian Kurds is very limited, I think Turkey’s hope that Barzani could do something about the PKK states is just a wishful thinking. Barzani could not to anything to counter the PKK state inside Syria.
For all these three reasons, Davutoğlu’s attempt to reach out to Barzani to deal with the PKK state inside Syria is an empty step. Such a meeting will, however, function as a pacifier for Turkish public anger and will prevent questioning and criticism of the Turkish government’s failure to anticipate the emerging PKK state inside Syria.

If possible, the AKP government is in search of a way to postpone the emergence of the PKK state because they, too, know that there is no way that Turkey will be able to prevent the emergence of such a state. Thus, for now, the AKP government wants to find a pacifier to pacify Turkish nationalist anger toward the AKP government to win some time. Hence, Davutoğlu’s visit to Barzani is an attempt to find a pacifier: no more, no less.

August 1st, 2012, 6:16 pm


jna said:

Reaction to massacre of prisoners in Aleppo by opposition:

“Al-Beri family has launched a counterattack on rebels in Aleppo after assassinating several of it members yesterday – Activist”

August 1st, 2012, 6:20 pm


Son of Damascus said:

Sandro Loewe,

RE: Bombardments by Assadi forces all over Syria today:

Madaya, Damascus:

Sheikh Meskin, Dera’a:

Al-Mahatah, Dera’a:

Al-Houla, Homs (Note the shelled mosque, I have seen through the pictures provided daily a considerable increase in shelling and targeting of Mosques by Assad’s forces since the start of Ramadan) :

Deir Bealbah, Homs:

Jouret Al-Sheyah, Homs:

Taftanaz, Idlib:

August 1st, 2012, 6:29 pm


zoo said:

Free Syrian Terrorists Army Begs for Help from their Country Saudi Arabia

August 1st, 2012, 6:32 pm


irritated said:

18. Son of Damascus

The FSA rejected Annan`s peace plan and called for an all out war, they got it.
Isn’t the time for the FSA to call Annan back?

August 1st, 2012, 6:35 pm


Son of Damascus said:

Something really important to consider regarding Artouz, it is perhaps a few kilometres away from the main Republican Guard barracks that lies on the outskirts of Damascus. Barracks is on top of the hill Artouz is just on the bottom.,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_qf.&biw=1539&bih=895&q=Jdaydet+Artooz,+Rif-Dimashq+Governorate,+Syria&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x151927273bcb89b1:0xf1a6996c79281a60,Jdaydet+Artooz,+Syria&gl=ca&sa=X&ei=v7EZUPr7HqrY6gGEm4HgDg&ved=0CCMQ8gEwAA

August 1st, 2012, 6:40 pm


Son of Damascus said:


So I guess you support your leaders scorched earth policy on Syria?

Since you mention the Annan plan care to show us a single point adhered to by your pathetic government?

Excusing the actions of the Assadi army because “it’s an all out war” rather than condemning it is really telling Irritated…

August 1st, 2012, 6:44 pm


Funk_Monk said:

5. Aldendeshe/SNP,

I heard one more high profile baathi will defect soon.

Just wanted to warn you
(since you seem to hate EX-baathis more than anything else…)

BTW: “Bedouins” have money. “Zionists” DO have brain.
So, according to this logic, “ZIO-Bedouins” must have both money and brain…

What about you?

August 1st, 2012, 6:47 pm


omen said:

speaking of which..

a graphic representation and bar graph measuring defections:

aje interactive

August 1st, 2012, 7:04 pm


Aldendeshe said:


Zionists and Bedouin have money that can be made worthless anytime. Wealth is made up of intellect and culture, neither Zionists nor Bedouins got any of it. They were genetically deprived by the real god (creator of universe) from owning real wealth, so they made a pack with the devil, the ONE EYED DECEIVER, AL DAJJAL. This dude as is on the line now, other aliens coming to kick his ass out soon.

How could you respect Moslems when they leave Jerusalem in Zionist hands and attack the poor Syrian people, 4 million Palestinians lives like rats in GAZA, in fact worse than rats. More to come on this subject of Palestinian suffering and indignity of Moslems.

I sure hope so, that is the good news of the day, I sure hope all the dam Baathists will defects, and all the Bedouins let off Syria, live in Paris and London, then will have Syria to our own again. It is working, thanks, get them all out please, you can have them all, let me know if you need help.

August 1st, 2012, 7:10 pm


irritated said:

21. Son of Damascus

It’s no excuse but consequences of ill-advised stubborness of the opposition to refuse to negotiate a ceasefire with the regime.

Obama said it : No De-Baathification, so isn’t better for the opposition to save lives and to negotiate with the Baath party now since they will end up by doing it anyway as soon as they loose their second battle?
The trouble is that the opposition is so divided, leaderless and chaotic that they can’t even make that decision.

August 1st, 2012, 7:28 pm


Syrian Nationalist Party said:

Just don’t have them all defect to you, give them heavy shake up to clean pockets out of cash and zero their bank accounts, then send them back to kill more Syrians, steal more of poor Syria’s oil and gas resources and miserable treasury. Go ahead give them the shake up, but do keep them to work as laborer as Baathist Socialists please.

August 1st, 2012, 7:34 pm


zoo said:

The Saudi sponsored UN assembly ( non-binding) resolution: No more calls for sanctions, no more calls for Assad to step down
To be put to vote on 3rd August

On Syria, Saudi Draft Drops Sanctions & Assad Stepping Down, for Friday Vote
By Matthew Russell Lee, Partial exclusive
UNITED NATIONS, August 1 — The day after Saudi Arabia presented a draft General Assembly resolution on Syria urging sanctions and Bashar al Assad to step down, a new draft dropped both, and the vote was pushed back one day.

The new draft, which Inner City Press obtained from a well placed member state after 5 pm on August 1, is now set for voting August 3 at 11 am. Inner City Press is putting the draft online here.

Most contentious in the previous draft, opponents said, was the last perambular paragraph

“welcoming the relevant League of Arab States’ decisions, including its 22 July 2012 resolution, in particular its appeal to the Syrian President to step down from power.”

Now that language is gone. An opponent late Wednesday exclusive also told Inner City Press, they’re afraid of us. They’d also pointed to operative paragraphs 20 and 21, which called on countries to adopt sanctions like the Arab League. That too is gone.

Saudi Arabia has been opposed on sanctions and “regime change” by, among others, BRICSA — Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa — and some Latin American countries.

Still in however is Paragraph 20, which a non-BRICSA diplomat told Inner City Press, is “disrespectful” to Kofi Annan, directing him to “focus his efforts.”

One BRICSA representative after Tuesday meeting said that Saudi Arabia put these in so as to negotiate. It looks like they were right.

But since Saudi Arabia, like Qatar, is already giving weapons to the opposition, adopting a resolution even like this could be seen to provide a further pretext.

August 1st, 2012, 7:38 pm


AIG said:


11 years with almost no serious reforms, that is stubbornness. Not willing to step down, that is stubbornness. Claiming that the Arab spring will never reach Syria one month before it does, is both stubbornness and stupidity. Claiming that Damascus and Aleppo will remain untouched is also both stubbornness and stupidity.

Assad can’t win under any likely scenario. In the best case scenario Assad will end up ruling a smoldering pile of ruins and will have zero legitimacy. Sanctions will still be in place and the awful relations with Turkey will be in place. All Assad can promise Syrians is the stone age plus Islamist terrorism even if he subdues the rebels.

It is time for Assad to understand this and leave. But he is stubborn and Syria will pay the price.

August 1st, 2012, 7:59 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

From now on, captured Shabbiha will be given milk and cookies — on camera. #Syria

August 1st, 2012, 8:01 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:


You’re wasting your time with Irritated.

August 1st, 2012, 8:02 pm


Tara said:

Bashar the coward.

Bashar al-Assad not seen in public for more than two weeks
Ian Black, Wednesday 1 August 2012 14.23 EDT

 al-Assad has not been seen in public since the bomb that killed his powerful brother-in-law and three other senior security chiefs in Damascus on 18 July.

The message he sent on Wednesday to the “heroes” of the Syrian armed forces was a written one, published in a military journal. Assad did not attend the funeral of Assef Shawkat, married to his sister Bushra, but he was seen on TV swearing in a replacement defence minister.

Fears for his own security – at a time when armed rebels have been able to strike in the very heart of the capital – appear to be keeping him in his palace and safely out of sight.

Rumours that Assad had fled to the coastal city of Latakia and that his British-born wife, Asma, had sought refuge in Russia were never substantiated. But there is bound to be pressure for the president to demonstrate leadership by appearing in person before too long.

August 1st, 2012, 8:14 pm


Ghufran said:

It is essential that Aleppo does not fall in the hands of thugs regardless of the allegiance of those thugs,like it or not,Syrian cities need a peace-keeping force that is feared and trusted by people,love is secondary here. Militias always turn to looting and revenge every time they take over an area that was pro regime,shabihas do the same in anti regime towns when they get “liberated”. An army with standards and an accountable leadership is the only hope to keep civil peace,I said that a year ago,it is still true today,you can call this army anything you want,it should be free from personalities that were proven to have taken part in atrocities,but thinking that the opposition can pull this task through without help from the established army is so Paul Bremerish, only dreamers will subscribe to that logic (I had to use dreamers to beat the filter).

August 1st, 2012, 8:37 pm


Syrian Nationalist Party said:

But there is bound to be pressure for the president to demonstrate leadership by appearing in person before too long.

Since when did the Assad’s ever demonstrated leadership?

Real leaders never let their country disintegrate as Bashar Assad did. First of all, real leaders never rule their beloved country and people as savagely and oppressively as the Baathists and Assad’s did. True Leaders never install and rule under a political, economic and social system, whereby all the nation people are denied any and all opportunity for improving their life, be it economically, socially or excel in political or scientific careers, and yet they, the few in leadership, are only and exclusively allowed all for themselves and their children. This is a crime against a nation; whoever led as such, is a criminal, not a leader.

Do you see the kind of right hand men Assad’s keep; is that a sign of leadership? A bunch of KHAWANAH, MURTAZAQA, MOSSAD AGENTS, TORTURERS, EMBEZZELERS, they all SULIAMANI TRAITORS. Look at his army now, all in the family, look at his diplomatic BAATHIST corp., they flip for the highest figure in hand. All ineffective, corrupt and after own wealth hording. Which true leader ever succeeds with this bunch around?

August 1st, 2012, 8:43 pm


omen said:

an analyst (on cnn, i think) made this point:

the regime has cut off food and water in certain areas. desperate people are going to loot stores for food in attempt to survive.

allowances should be made for such actions.

Syrian cities need a peace-keeping force

ban ki moon is suffering amnesia and has forgotten the un has a peacekeeping force it could deploy.

another suggestion:

One Saudi writer, Jamal Khashogji, suggested that an Arab peacekeeping force be dispatched to Syria to prevent sectarian killings and ensure the survival of the Syrian state.

August 1st, 2012, 8:46 pm


Uzair8 said:

According to the main post above, Syria’s pre-revolution estimated currency reserves of $17.6 billion have only decreased by $5 billion. The regime still has $12.6 billion?

Moving on:

Syria trying to address economic woes and soothe people

[Selected quote]

Furthermore, media reported that the two sides have reached an agreement providing for submitting a one-billion-U.S. dollar long- term Iranian loan to be used during the next five months for financing power-generating projects and ensuring Syria’s needs of fuel, gas and drugs.

Since the very beginning, the Iranian side has proposed a deposit valued at five billion U.S. dollars to support the Syrian pound, but Syria refused the offer at that time for its high cost.

August 1st, 2012, 8:49 pm


Uzair8 said:

Asma Assad will feel a little less isolated amongst first lady circles with the arrival of Ri Sol-ju, North Korea’s new First Lady on to the scene.

August 1st, 2012, 8:56 pm


Tara said:

FSA leaders are careful not to reveal their strategy but Mustafa al-Sheikh, a former army general who now heads the FSA’s supreme military council, told the Guardian from the Syria-Turkey border area: “The fighting is like hit-and-run. We are not aiming to get control of any city in Syria, but we want to exhaust the regime and speed up its collapse.”
Bashir al-Haji, spokesman for the FSA’s Tawhid (“Unity”) Brigade, told the Guardian in a phone interview that the shootings were in retaliation for an incident on Tuesday when 15 FSA people were killed by Berri shabiha despite a truce that was supposed to be in force in that part of Aleppo.

“We were able to kill 20 of them and arrest another 50,” he said. “We held a field trial for them. We have judges and lawyers who are in the opposition. They found that seven of the Berri clan were involved in killing and they decided to execute them. Others are being kept for trial after the collapse of the regime.”

In a separate development, the FSA denied a report that it had acquired shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles that could be used to shoot down government aircraft. NBC news reported that the weapons had been delivered via Turkey. The US government has said it was not supplying lethal weapons to Syrian rebels but Saudi Arabia and Qatar have been pressing to do so and have the cash to buy them on the international black market.

August 1st, 2012, 9:01 pm



Let no one entertain any doubts that the only thugs in Syria are the regime and the band which is rampaging the country on its behalf.

Syrians are fortunate to have after a period of 50 years of subjugation some who have the courage to defect from the army of thugs (i.e. so-called Syrian Army), because their honor and conscience does not allow them to become tools of murder of the people they are supposed to defend.

The FSA is the most honorable institution to emerge from this revolution. These are men who put their welfare, wellbeing and whatever career the thugs of the regime allow them to have in order to defend the dignity and honor of the Syrian people.

We look forward to the day when the FSA will liberate all of Aleppo, and not only 60% of it, and then all of Syria from this abominable, shameful and despicable regime of thugs and criminals.

August 1st, 2012, 9:06 pm


Uzair8 said:

The Syrian Interior ministry is now broadcasting adverts asking people to “volunteer in the security forces” –

August 1st, 2012, 9:08 pm


omen said:

when was the last time bashar has been seen? staged photo ops don’t count.

August 1st, 2012, 9:12 pm


Syrian Nationalist Party said:

المالح وابنه سرقا مبلغ 33 مليون دولار من أموال “الثورة” قبل أن تجمدها الألمانية بعد قصة ابنه مع “عاهرة” ، وشريط فيديو يلقي مزيدا من الضوء على ذلك

August 1st, 2012, 9:16 pm


Tara said:

I miss spending evenings on a balcony in Damascus. Life can be so dry here. Haven’t they taught us that God will always protect Damascus. Why did they lie?

August 1st, 2012, 9:17 pm


irritated said:

Are all the SC commenters totally subjugated by the visitor from hell to applaude him?
Or the vote has been hacked or inflated by other parasites?

August 1st, 2012, 9:36 pm


irritated said:

#43 Omen

How long that Ryad Al Assad has not been seen, not even in photo?

August 1st, 2012, 9:38 pm


omen said:

35. ghufran : Syrian cities need a peace-keeping force that is feared and trusted by people

i hope you’re not thinking of an iranian force. or hezbollah.

thinking that the opposition can pull this task through without help from the established army is so Paul Bremerish, only dreamers will subscribe to that logic

wait, wanting to call in a foreign occupying force is paul bremeresque. you need another metaphor.

shabihas do the same in anti regime towns

shabiha lawlessness doesn’t respect boundaries.

August 1st, 2012, 9:56 pm


Observer said:

I am surprised why Addounia and Cham Press and SANA and others are not showing the execution video.

The execution in my opinion is a war crime. A war crime is a war crime not matter who does it.
I guess that if they were to broadcast the video it would send a huge chill in the spine of the regime supporters on the one hand and may cause significant defections. It may also make the Alawi minority so fearful of reprisals that they may very well stick to the bitter end. I guess the last thing the regime wants is panic.

I am also surprised that the Marshall Commander In Chief Secretary General President did not make a televised speech or show up in public. If I were a simple conscript soldier I would wonder whether I should sacrifice my life for a Commander in Chief who does not even grace me with an apparence on TV.

I am surprised at the use of fixed wing aircraft. It looks like the training aircraft and these are two pilot aircraft in contrast to the regular MIG 21 or MIG 23 which are one pilot aircraft. Does this mean that he cannot trust a single pilot in an airplane without having a “minder” to make sure he does not defect?

Also has there been a decrease in helicopter use? reports of tanks attacking an airbase near Aleppo may have deprived the regular army of some helicopters.

My understanding is that Joshua Landis thinks that Fredo may become like another warlord as we have in Lebanon presiding over a minority based milita and that a sort of status quo of equal forces will lead to his survival. It is possible considering how fractious the opposition can be. However, the family rule is finished forever in my opinion.

The regime in my opinion is now in the process of destroying the parts he does not control in accordance with the slogan of ‘we burn the country”. It thinks that if we cannot control it, at least we will leave it in shambles. It is perfectly in accordance with the mentality of the regime thugs.

I cannot cheer the death of anyone without just and fair trial. So no cheers today.

August 1st, 2012, 9:57 pm


Ghufran said:

The famous video we posted about the thugs who “infiltrated” the FSA angelic force is now available for the whole world to see,congratulations:

August 1st, 2012, 10:00 pm


bronco said:


Your posts are getting a real immediate success the moment you post them. Aren’t you surprised and happy of that sudden popularity?

Yet, it could be a “non lethal” cyberweapon that is doing the vote… or you have convinced all the pro-regime they were wrong and they now vote for you and your friends.

August 1st, 2012, 10:05 pm


Ales said:

“Visitor from hell” is here to subtly stoke the flames higher.
Articulate or crude, as needed.

August 1st, 2012, 10:11 pm


irritated said:

#43 Omen

How long that Ryad Al Assad has not been seen, not even in photo?

(Test to see if I get the same audience)

August 1st, 2012, 10:15 pm


irritated said:

#52 Ales

Subtly? More like a dinosaure.

August 1st, 2012, 10:17 pm


Tara said:


Who wouldn’t like spending an evening in a balcony in Syria drinking coffee (or Arak) and taking in the charm of the city?… Don’t read too much into the thumb up or thumb down system.

August 1st, 2012, 10:20 pm


zoo said:

Finally a report from the ‘disgusting’ Syrian refugee camps in Turkey.
Now we know why foreign press is not allowed: No water, no electricity…

“Be sure that there is no way a Turkish Cabinet minister can visit these camps nowadays. He would be booed or have tomatoes thrown at him.”

I have talked to Aslı Aydıntaşbaş from daily Milliyet, who visited the Syrian refugee camps.

She is describing a disgusting picture.

Imagine that the temperature is 45 degrees and there is no water in the camps. Once a day or once every few days water arrives in tanks and of course it is not enough for anybody. The refugees have organized themselves and their children carry water from a farm at a distance.

Markets have been set up and with a very modern system; instead of money they put their thumbprints to shop. Schools and computer courses have been set up; however, none of them are working because there’s no electricity. More precisely, there are such frequent and long blackouts that you can say so…

As you see, the state has spent large amounts of money and completed the infrastructure, however, the incompetent bureaucracy cannot make it work. It humiliates our state.

I spoke to Aslı; she told me that the situation in Urfa was even worse. She also made an interesting suggestion: “There are thousands of unemployed teachers in the region. They can be temporarily hired for those schools to teach children.”

In the beginning, these camps were filled with people glorifying Erdoğan, wishing Turkey well. Whoever visited those camps came back with the same reflections. Be sure that there is no way a Turkish Cabinet minister can visit these camps nowadays. He would be booed or have tomatoes thrown at him.

August 1st, 2012, 10:28 pm


Aldendeshe said:

For those that cares about thumbing. Just do what TARA does, either go online to web proxy and enter syricomment (if your security allow that), or a safer way (if you have no LAN network) just a single computer: clear your cashe and internet history, log off your computer and power it off, wait 5 minutes, power it up again and log on back, you should if you have Dynamic IP address Protocol get a new IP to access your ISP and now you can see the thumbs red/green again. You will have to keep doing that all day, so go figure what life this person leads. Otherwise, someone maybe gave her the click script I told Ghufran about last week.

August 1st, 2012, 10:29 pm


bronco said:


Don’t turn the knife in the wound…

August 1st, 2012, 10:31 pm


irritated said:

58. Aldendeshe

I guess this is the life of the visitor from hell and his angels on different ‘non-lethal’ US granted computers

August 1st, 2012, 10:34 pm


Tara said:


I usually ignore rude or inappropriate posts by choice. I am not in a mood of ignoring your post today. I will stop short from asking the moderator to moderate you for accusation. Go play somewhere else and do not cross the line again.

August 1st, 2012, 10:36 pm


Tara said:


Do not let me cry now..

August 1st, 2012, 10:38 pm


Halabi said:

Assad’s army. Not one of these criminals have been brought to justice by the existing government. Genocide supporters and sectarian opponent of the revolution would scream bloody murder if the FSA or anyone else touches a hair on the head of these monsters. They want these animals to lord over us forever, and if we say no they call us terrorists.

“Obama said it : No De-Baathification”

Assad supporters refuse to take dictation from the imperial west that has unleashed terror and death in Syria. Obama said to stop the violence, that Assad should step down and the opposite happened. In order to be independent in his decision Assad should start with the de-Baathification himself. The logic is unassailable.

August 1st, 2012, 10:45 pm


Aldendeshe said:

EXPOSED!!!! Another Syrian Revolutionaries tactic, she gave a vote to the new self declared Syrian Government Leader Maleh, who’s already in legal troubles and his son is now out on bail for financial fraud in Germany. Hail the new/old Syrian Government. 300,000 refugees, 23,000 dead, untold missing and in prison, all that to get Maleh and Tlass in power.

August 1st, 2012, 10:48 pm


omen said:

i can’t find the video now but dw (deutsche welle) aired a profile of a privileged sunni family (with a beautiful courtyard) in damascus who continues to support the regime.

what struck me was the family had zero concern about showing their faces. even their children reacted casually to the camera.

that made me think back to earlier interviews with regime supporters who temporarily took refuge across the lebanon border. they too didn’t care their faces were being shown.

that suggests to me average syrians don’t fear retaliation from the rebels. it’s regime officials and shabiha with blood on their hands who need to worry.

August 1st, 2012, 10:54 pm


Visitor said:

The Nazi-like criminal thug occupying Damascus and his terrorist Iranian cohorts may have been expecting a northern blow from Turkey. It appears, however, that a storm from the south is about to blow sweeping In its way Damascus all the way to the pride of every Syrian, Homs, the capital of the revolution.

Can anyone estimate how long the thugs of the so-called fourth brigade would last in front of the Jordanian army?

August 1st, 2012, 11:02 pm


irritated said:

Someone forgot to vote the second time, I’ll try a third time to see if the vote is a spam.

==================== first time ========================
47. irritated said:

#43 Omen

How long that Ryad Al Assad has not been seen, not even in photo?

Thumb up 2 Thumb down 11

=========================== Second time ==================
4. irritated said:

#43 Omen

How long that Ryad Al Assad has not been seen, not even in photo?

(Test to see if I get the same audience)

Thumb up 1 Thumb down 12

August 1st, 2012, 11:04 pm


irritated said:

#66 Visitor from Hell

Can anyone estimate how long the thugs of the so-called fourth brigade would last in front of the Jordanian army?

A year ?

August 1st, 2012, 11:05 pm



A King sits safe and sound in the front lines among his men, nothing for him to fear – no stray bullets, no hidden bombs, no surprises.

A Nazi-like thug is no where to be seen on a so-called army day, just like his South Beirut comrade-in-crime, hasan-plasma, and yet expects, no demands, that his thugs fight and die for him.

Can you estimate how long the thugs of the so-called fourth brigade would last in front of the Royal Jordanian Army?

August 1st, 2012, 11:27 pm


Aldendeshe said:

Just want you all in on a secret, I measure the success of the comment based on how many thumb down it gets. You see SNP and me are combative entities, agitators by nature, so there never posted a comment to seek thumb up or your approval. It is posted to agitate you into thinking and learning. It is just too bad that this platform is moderated and so restricted. I do not know how much to push the envelope. For example, the alien, the good alien, gave me a picture of someone lived back in the 6th century (among other photos of ancient times), he was a prophet, would it be a good idea to publish it here? If too many thumb down, it will means to me not a good idea, you choose.

August 1st, 2012, 11:31 pm


irritated said:

#69 Visitor from hell

Can you estimate how long the thugs of the so-called fourth brigade would last in front of the Royal Jordanian Army?

Two years?


August 1st, 2012, 11:51 pm


Ghufran said:

بيروت ـ (ا ف ب) – انتقد قائد الجيش السوري الحر العقيد رياض الاسعد الاربعاء قيادة الجيش السوري الحر في الداخل، معتبرا ان طرحها لمشروع حكومة انتقالية يؤكد سعيها للحصول على مناصب، ويساهم في اعادة احياء نظام الرئيس بشار الاسد.
وحمل الاسعد في خطاب تم بثه عبر موقع “يوتيوب” للتواصل على شبكة الانترنت على “عناصر ممن يدعون الانتساب الى جيشنا السوري الحر او قياداته في الداخل” الذين “اصابت البعض منهم حمى التسابق على الفرص واغتنام المناصب الى حد دعاهم الى انشاء وتاسيس حكومات انتقالية”.
واعتبر في الخطاب الموجه الى السوريين في ذكرى تاسيس الجيش السوري ان هؤلاء يحاولون “ركوب موجة ثورتنا والاتجار بدماء شهدائنا الابرار”.
وقال الاسعد ان هؤلاء “يحاولون في الواقع اعادة احياء نظام الاسد الساقط لاحتكار القرار من غير الرجوع الى رأي الشعب الذي بذل الدم والدموع لكي يحصل على استقلاله من عصابة الاسد المجرمة”.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:06 am


mjabali said:

As expected rebels now use tanks on a wider scale, forcing al-Assad to use his air force.

The rebels are getting foreign fighters: soon al-Assad is going to get some, if he hadn’t already. al-Qaida is children play compared with the new breed of al mujahidin that are going to come out of this nasty bloody fight in Syria.

Soon the fighting is going to reach another level.

It will reach the surrounding countries: al-Assad played the Kurdish card well. The Kurds want their state. Turkey is going to fight this of course. Iraq is going to get in for sure. Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Qatar: the three beacons of democracy, are in the fight. Man, things are going to get ugly.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:13 am


Syrialover said:

Bashar has such classy friends and allies! Losers, losers, losers

President Vladimir Putin’s cruel tyranny is driven by paranoia

The Pussy Riot trial shows the Russian regime hardening its approach to dissent


Apologists for the Kremlin are struggling. The Russian regime’s dogged defence of the blood-drenched Syrian dictatorship, and its persecution of the Pussy Riot musicians for their stunt in Moscow’s main cathedral, display its nastiest hallmark: support for repression at home and abroad.

Russia’s leader has in recent weeks signed laws that criminalise defamation, introduce £6,000 fines for participants in unauthorised demonstrations, require non-profit outfits financed by grants from abroad to label themselves as “foreign agents”, and create a new blacklist of “harmful” internet sites.

Also a distant memory is Russia’s “reset” with America, which was supposed to herald a new era of cooperation. Since Mr Putin’s return, Russia’s foreign-policy rhetoric has been venomously anti-Western.

Western governments largely ignore what their intelligence services tell them: that the regime in Moscow is a criminal syndicate, fuelled by a noxious ideology of paranoia and supremacy

Yet Russia’s support for Syria can seem almost incomprehensible. Why risk such opprobrium in a doomed cause? The answer is the same as in the case of Pussy Riot. For all its contempt for the West, Russia’s regime also feels cornered by it. It sees the opposition at home, and pro-democracy movements abroad, as part of the same threat. Mr Putin does not want to share the fate of Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Serbia’s Slobodan Milosevic, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi of Libya – or, closer to home, the Ukrainian leadership toppled by the “Orange revolution” of 2005.

The policies that follow from this paranoia make Mr Putin’s plight worse, not better. Repression undermines the regime’s legitimacy.
But the more the regime denounces its foes as foreign puppets, the less persuasive its propaganda appears. Its business model is in trouble too: the gas price has plummeted thanks to the rise of America’s shale-gas industry. The oil market may be heading in the same direction. For a regime that survives by collecting and distributing the windfall gains of its mining industries, that is ominous news.

It is hard to see a way out for Mr Putin. Many of those around him know that change is needed: more openness, more legality, more choice. But they fear what it would mean. Opposition politicians, media and prosecutors, if unleashed, would feast on the regime’s past misdeeds. Tens of billions of dollars have disappeared into offshore bank accounts. Dozens of people have died mysterious deaths. The cupboards are packed with skeletons. Opening up Russia’s political system risks them falling into public view.

Russia’s neighbours are right to worry about the country’s direction. But as so often in the past, it is Russians themselves who will suffer most at their rulers’ hands.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:14 am


mjabali said:


This is a reply to your post dated July/28/2012.

None of us know what is inside the hearts of al-Assads, if they were true to their Arab Nationalistic stated claims. It is known, they, father and son, are the biggest champions of Arab Nationalism on paper and in practice. They been championing this since day one. I can not remember how many times they made sing song for the one mighty Arab Nation.

You said that “it is clear that a significant number of Alawi leaders are deeply sectarian and have been hiding behind the facade of Arab nationalism.”

First, how they are sectarian? Yes they have Alawi soldiers, but don’t they have Sunnis business partners?

I disagree with you also for a simple fact: Hafez was not sectarian. He was more tribal. Here is something you do not know of course: the Alawis are two major groups. al-Assad and almost all of his top men are from the same group. Hafez was discriminatory against the Alawis. If you were like him, you get a high position.

al-Assads wanted to pass the Alawis as Sunnis in a messed up society that is Syria. They did not do one thing for the Alawi creed. No schools, no clergy, no books, no attempt to make the Sunnis know who the Alawis are.

The only thing he did was get people from his group, rely on the Sunni friends, who are chosen carefully to be weak and clownish (Tlass, Khaddam, Masharqa, Bajbur, al-Ahmar…etc is your prime examples) Those Sunnis were part of the image Hafez constructed.
Of course they depended on Alawi soldiers to protect them, that does not mean that they are sectarian. They are just playing by the book or how to rule a third world country.

The previous rulers of Syria all depended on their immediate clan and a number of local stooges.

As for Arab Nationalism: for me it is a joke. I am not into racist ideology. Arab Nationalism was forced upon us, where many of us are not Arabs ethnically, and not even culturally.

Observer Said: “Now why do you want a separate state on the coast? If a purely secular state is what you want why not for all of Syria or the ME in its entirety? This is because you are sectarian and you want a state where the Alawi are a majority just as the Maronite leadership was sectarian and wanted to preserve a majority and not numerical then in power structure.”

Mr Observer, obviously you do not read what I write. I said that Syria is going to be divided and when it is going to be divided a state on the coast is going to emerge. I argued that this state have foundations to survive. Then I stated my wish that if this happens, al-Assad and his men should stay out of it. As for the type of rule: I stood for a secular rule giving all who live on that land equal rights.

So, how am I sectarian? I said that an outcome of what is going on might be the creation of a state with the Alawis separating from Syria. People want to separate because people align themselves these days according to their religions.

Do not blame the Alawi if they want to separate. It is obvious also that the Sunnis do not want them amongst them.

As for you telling me that I have to fight for this state, you are wrong because I am not for the dividing of Syria, but, what can you do if it is happening in front of you?

August 2nd, 2012, 12:44 am


Syrialover said:

This is war. Civil war. Ordinary people are fighting for their lives. They have a powerful belief in their cause and more courage than the soldiers they are fighting, but are out there without much time for training, experience or access to the bigger picture.

They are determined to stop a regime that’s burning their homeland with mass homicide, genocide and urbicide. They know they will be tortured and shot if captured. Them or us. The norms and stakes have been long set by the Assad mafia.

So it’s almost bizarre to see the outrage at the deaths of the Berri criminal thugs. Sure, it’s scary and ugly and cruel. But it’s a tiny fragment of what’s been done to many thousands of far more innocent and defenceless people by the Syrian “regime team”. So it’s not unexpected for those fighting the FSA’s life or death struggle to have killed such vicious opponents.

And we all know the killing of the Berri criminals was the only language the Assad side respects. And having them dead removed the need for them to be defended against attempted rescue.

In contrast, what the regime has been doing is NOT normal under ANY circumstances.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:50 am


Uzair8 said:


Syria – FSA’s Farouq Brigade Captures 40-60 SAA Soldiers (Homs)

Added: 21 hours ago Occurred On: Aug-1-2012

‘Major blow to the Syrian Assad Army. These guys give their statements who they get their orders from, why some have one military ID badge and a police ID badge (So that they can travel to and from certain locations), what they do/did, who they are and why some of them deserted their companions in arms and fled while the FSA advanced.

This took place in Homs between Bayada Neighborhood and Khaldiye Neighborhood.’

August 2nd, 2012, 12:51 am


Syria no Kandahar said:

That video is very old….. Those soldiers already killed by Alfarook terrorists.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:11 am


ann said:

Obama authorized secret support for Syrian rebels – 4 hrs ago

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorizing U.S. support for rebels seeking to depose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his government, sources familiar with the matter said.

Obama’s order, approved earlier this year and known as an intelligence “finding,” broadly permits the CIA and other U.S. agencies to provide support that could help the rebels oust Assad.

This and other developments signal a shift toward growing, albeit still circumscribed, support for Assad’s armed opponents – a shift that intensified following last month’s failure of the U.N. Security Council to agree on tougher sanctions against the Damascus government.

The White House is for now apparently stopping short of giving the rebels lethal weapons, even as some U.S. allies do just that.

But U.S. and European officials have said that there have been noticeable improvements in the coherence and effectiveness of Syrian rebel groups in the past few weeks. That represents a significant change in assessments of the rebels by Western officials, who previously characterized Assad’s opponents as a disorganized, almost chaotic, rabble.

Precisely when Obama signed the secret intelligence authorization, an action not previously reported, could not be determined.

The full extent of clandestine support that agencies like the CIA might be providing also is unclear.

White House spokesman Tommy Vietor declined comment.


A U.S. government source acknowledged that under provisions of the presidential finding, the United States was collaborating with a secret command center operated by Turkey and its allies.

Last week, Reuters reported that, along with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Turkey had established a secret base near the Syrian border to help direct vital military and communications support to Assad’s opponents.

This “nerve center” is in Adana, a city in southern Turkey about 60 miles from the Syrian border, which is also home to Incirlik, a U.S. air base where U.S. military and intelligence agencies maintain a substantial presence.

European government sources said wealthy families in Saudi Arabia and Qatar were providing significant financing to the rebels. Senior officials of the Saudi and Qatari governments have publicly called for Assad’s departure.

On Tuesday, NBC News reported that the Free Syrian Army had obtained nearly two dozen surface-to-air missiles, weapons that could be used against Assad’s helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. Syrian government armed forces have employed such air power more extensively in recent days.

NBC said the shoulder-fired missiles, also known as MANPADs, had been delivered to the rebels via Turkey.


August 2nd, 2012, 1:18 am


Uzair8 said:

#78 SNK

I wouldn’t know SNK.

Somebody posted it elsewhere with the words to the effect:

‘The so called ‘defeated’ rebels capture dozens of prisoners.’

August 2nd, 2012, 1:20 am



@ 77. UZAIR8

It’s an old video, but what is obvious is the good treatment of the prisoners.
Al-Farouq Brigades made it clear that they try to treat the prisoners according to the Geneva Convention as best as they can and invited the Red Crescent to come and check the prisoners’ conditions.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:26 am


ann said:

Achtung Photoshop! Austria’s largest daily doctors Syrian photos – 02 August, 2012

“What it shows is a coordinated series of efforts on the part of the media to really undermine basic journalistic truth, when it comes to reporting, in favor of skewing the story against the Assad government and towards the rebels,” Corbett told RT. “And that shows the political bias of many of these outlets”

Bloggers have accused Austria’s largest newspaper of using Photoshop to make the battle-ravaged Syrian city of Aleppo look even more war-torn than it already is.

­The controversial photo accompanied an article entitled Assads Armee rollt mit Panzem zur, Mutter aller Schlachten (“Assad’s Army tanks pave the way for the ‘mother of all battles'”) in the July 28 edition of Die Kronen Zeitung.

It depicts a man holding a child walking alongside a woman in a hijab as they are flanked by the ruins of what appear to be bombed-out apartment blocks.

But astute bloggers on the popular social networking site Reddit realized that while the photo was real, something was fishy about the backdrop.

It turns out the original photo appeared on the European Pressphoto Agency’s website on July 26. But instead of walking through the bombed-out heart of Syria’s largest city, the trio in question are clearly walking through a typical urban landscape where the most striking feature just might be the graffiti-tagged wall they are passing.

Critics on Reddit accused the daily of spicing up the print to sell copy, though several posters also accused the newspaper of being biased against pro-government forces.


August 2nd, 2012, 1:26 am


ann said:

Obamaa’s friends

War crime? Syrian rebels execute POWs (GRAPHIC VIDEO) – 01 August, 2012

A horrifying amateur video from Syria emerged online, showing an apparent mass execution of pro-government forces in Aleppo at the hands of rebels from the Free Syria Army.

The footage shows several bloodied men stripped down to their underwear being forced to kneel by a wall amidst a throng of excited, machine gun-touting men.

Once their captors open fire, the camera jerks away as the crowd momentarily disperses, seemingly unprepared for the nearly 40 seconds of uninterrupted shooting that follows.As the gunfire dies down, shouts of“Allahu Akbar!” resound as the once skittish onlookers victoriously raise their guns in the air, approaching what appears to be a pile of stripped-down corpses.

One of the victims has been identified as Ali Zeineddin al-Berri, who has been accused of leading a shabiha group which killed 15 FSA soldiers during a truce in Aleppo on Tuesday, BBC reports.

The video depicting the apparent massacre has not been verified, though the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said such vengeance was a crime as Islamic law does not authorize the execution of prisoners.

Clive Baldwin, a senior legal adviser for Human Rights Watch (HRW), told BBC News: “What it looks like is execution of detainees and if that is the case, that would be a war crime.”

Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Gennady Gatilov condemned the shooting. “The brutal massacre of government supporters by the opposition in the city of Aleppo shows that human rights violations are being committed by both sides,” he wrote on Twitter.

It is not the first time that reports have emerged of rebels carrying out executions against pro-Assad forces without trial.

Ahmed, a rebel fighter from the Amr bin al-Aas brigade which operates in the Syrian town of Azaz, recounted the execution of a Syrian army sniper named Rami who was shot dead after a graveside “trial,” Reuters reports.

Ahmed says Rami was firing from the top of a high minaret at a local mosque before he was captured.

“We took him right to his grave and, after hearing the witnesses’ statements, we shot him dead,” the agency sites Ahmed as saying.

Ahmed made it clear that his forces often capture “handfuls of soldiers” in battle, saying that his men would create courts for the captured men and execute them.


August 2nd, 2012, 1:32 am


ann said:

Syrian rebels boost arsenal with portable anti-aircraft missiles – 02 August, 2012

The Free Syrian Army has reportedly acquired portable surface-to-air missiles to use against government jets and helicopters. The news comes amid stirrings within the FSA that Al Qaeda fighters in their ranks are “a threat to their revolution.”

The Free Syrian Army has added nearly two-dozen surface-to-air (SAM) launchers to their arsenal, NBC reported on Tuesday. “The rebel sources tell that for the first time in this conflict the Free Syrian Army has been armed with nearly two dozen shoulder-fired anti-aircraft missiles that came in from Turkey. The rebels hope that this is just the first batch, and say their effects will be felt soon,” the TV network’s chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel.

Engel said the rebels hope the portable missile launchers will spell an end to the as-yet-unchallenged air superiority of pro-Assad troops in the battle for Aleppo.

Pictures of launchers shown in the report resemble the Soviet-era Strela portable SAM launcher. The image, if true, could suggest a link between the Syrian rebels and Libya, whose arsenals were ransacked last year after the fall of the regime of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.

Some 10,000-15,000 portable SAM launchers were alleged to have disappeared from Libyan military storehouses.

Several countries, including Persian Gulf monarchies Saudi Arabia and Qatar, have been recently calling to supply the FSA with surface-to-air missile launchers.

Al-Qaeda ‘trying to highjack the Syrian revolution’

Syrian rebel fighter Abu Khuder says that his group is battling the Assad regime in close cooperation with the FSA, and consults with their military council on a daily basis, according to the Guardian.

Khuder, a battalion commander for Solidarity Front, Al-Qaeda’s main arm in Syria, revealed in the interview that “we have clear instructions from our [al-Qaida] leadership that if the FSA need our help we should give it. We help them with IEDs and car bombs. Our main talent is in the bombing operations.”

The commander said he joined Al-Qaeda because he was “frustrated” with the lack of discipline within the ranks of FSA fighters. Al Jazeera has also reported that jihadists have established military camps within Syria.

The Guardian claims that scores of ‘freedom fighters’ are flocking to these camps from nearby Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, and remote locales like Bangladesh, Chechnya, Belgium and the UK. Radical Islamists have already started to employ symbols like the black flag to distinguish their forces from the rest of the FSA.


August 2nd, 2012, 1:45 am


Syrian Nationalist Party said:

While the rest of the Islamic world engages in Zionist backed genocidal Terrorism against Syria’s Moslems, the Muslim community of Rohingya in Burma is being incessantly targeted and slaughtered mercilessly with nary a voice raised in condemnation. Thousands of Burmese Muslims have been massacred while a large number have been forced to flee for their lives and dwell in squalid conditions.

Who are the Rohingya Moslems and why are they being slaughtered by the majority Buddhists? Is it Allah punishment? Why are Muslims after killing fellow Moslems in Syria, while American led troupes killed over 3 million Sunni Moslems in Iraq and Afghanistan? Why the Moslem Brotherhood and Organization of Islamic State is condemning Syria’s ruler whose father built more than 40,000 mosques in the country and yet is silent about the slaughter of Moslems in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan and many other places. Is it because this Islamic Organization is just a tool of Zionists Jews ruling in Arabia disguised as Moslems? Do Moslem care about the suffering of Sunni Moslems in Afghanistan? In Gaza? For many observers, puzzling and disconcerting questions about this religion and its adherents are raised daily.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:58 am


Syrialover said:

Sorry to have to remnind you SNP (#85), the people facing the most terrifying military massacre threat on the planet this very moment are the citizens of Aleppo and other areas in Syria.

Sure, Burma is terrible – and not only for Moslems there.

But you come across as trying to create some sort of “distraction” from what the Assad regime has been doing in Syria. While also pushing your own pet conspiracy theories and ideas which don’t really fit the current case.

Pushing political-religious ideas above human issues is not empathetic or respectful to the millions of people living this terrible nightmare inside Syria

August 2nd, 2012, 2:16 am


Juergen said:

I firmly believe the best photoshop pros live in Damascus, Tehran and Moscow.

About the killing of the berri clan, i talked over that with a friend from Idleb, he told me that he does not feel any remorse over the killing.Those folks walked on the street terrorizing the neighborhood and were known criminals. When they liked a girl they took her, if that girl was married, the husband ended up in prison or even got killed.

I agreed that those men lived outside the law and now were killed outside the law, nonevertheless such acts are a crime, and we should never be as barbaric as the regime treats its self declared “enemies”. Of course thats a discourse from an ideal standpoint, if one witnesses the atrocities committed by the regime, acts of mercy and the conveyment of international treaties seems more and more impossible.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:33 am


Uzair8 said:


Thanks for confirming.

Somebody posted it earlier today on a military forum. It did look familiar, however, seeing the date of the video I assumed it was new which would also explain why I hadn’t seen it mentioned anywhere else yet.

August 2nd, 2012, 3:30 am


Uzair8 said:

This fits in with what Observer mentioned:

Naharnet ‏@Naharnet
#Breaking Rebels in Syria bombarded the Menagh air base that was being used by helicopter gunships and other warpla…

August 2nd, 2012, 3:39 am


annie said:

Zaid Benjamin ‏@zaidbenjamin

#BREAKING: Jabhat al-Nosra, the Syrian version of al-Qaeda, is behind the execution of several members of Al Biri clan in #Aleppo

August 2nd, 2012, 4:23 am


Juergen said:

The spa town of the rebels

In the Turkish Antakia wounded Syrians are treated in hospitals for free. Rebel fighters recover from the war there against Assad. One of them is the frail Yasser. He wants to make up for his family – and then quickly back into the fray.

In the public hospital in the city Antakia the Syrian rebels even know the hospital better than the staff. The Turkish nurses, doctors and department heads do not know how many Syrians are currently in the hospital. Jasser knows it : “We currently have around 50 fighters of the Free Syrian army in the treatment of which three are currently in orthopedics, please follow me.”. Then he limps forward through the crowded corridors of the emergency room.”

August 2nd, 2012, 4:49 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Ignore the host, the nature of this TV show (probably Evangelical), and the built-in Christian propaganda. Listen to the interviewee, and his unique life story and lessons.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:52 am


annie said:

Ah ! A call like this !

August 2nd, 2012, 6:02 am



The attack on the Aleppo airbase as well as on the historic Aleppo Citadel by the valiant knights of the glorious FSA is welcome news. This proves that the FSA possesses great dynamism and superior military initiatives and are capable in shaping the battle in ways that suits their strategies.

We also welcome the wise, better-late-than-never, decision of Mr. Obama to allow the Americans to contribute to this great and noble army of the Syrian people. No doubt, even if it took him so long to recognize it, Mr. Obama has learnt the great value and legitimacy of this army. We must, however, continue to lobby the US admin to allow the sale of advanced weapons to the FSA. In particular we need Stinger missiles, effective anti-armour missiles as well as naval strike missiles in order to shoot down thug’s aircraft, destroy its armour and last but not least to destroy the fleet of the despicable Russians invading our ports.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:13 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Continues here after min 28:00

August 2nd, 2012, 6:15 am


annie said:

• The execution by rebels of Berri clan leaders suspected of being shabiha militiamen in Aleppo was an act of retaliation following the killing of 15 rebel soldiers on Tuesday, Bashir al-Haji, spokesman for the rebel Tawhid (“Unity”) Brigade, told the Guardian. He said: “We were able to kill 20 of them and arrest another 50. We held a field trial for them. We have judges and lawyers who are in the opposition. They found that seven of the Berri clan were involved in killing and they decided to execute them. Others are being kept for trial after the collapse of the regime.”

August 2nd, 2012, 7:22 am


zoo said:

Why Syria’s Rebels Can’t Have It All
Don’t listen to pundits who want to drag America into another Middle East quagmire. The Obama administration’s strategy in Syria is already working.

The reality is that Syria is in the middle of a complex internal struggle with a divided opposition, regional players with diverse agendas, and competing great powers. There’s no single force on the ground — or constellation of outside powers — that can impose order.

As for Turkey, on which the pro-intervention crowd is banking much of its hopes, there is a reason Ankara has been all bark but no bite. Turkey will use military force if it sees Kurdish militants using the power vacuum in Syria to carve out a base, but it hasn’t pushed aggressively for a “safe zone” in Syrian territory because of its own public’s wariness of war and complications with Iran and Russia. Remember Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s “zero problems” policy? He wants to be loved by everybody.

Syria today is a mess — but it’s a Syrian mess. Afghanistan and Iraq should teach us that America can’t control the world. It’s time the country focus primarily on fixing its own broken house, instead of chasing the illusion that it can always help repair somebody else’s.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:47 am


Syria no Kandahar said:

Judges and lawyers!! Yeh right and jurors!
We have seen it in the video all.
Is that what they did to Adnan Bakour,Nidal Janoud,Sameer Takeh…etc

August 2nd, 2012, 7:47 am


zoo said:

Welcome to the CIA in Syria

Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorising US support for rebels seeking to depose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his government, sources familiar with the matter have told Reuters.

Obama’s order, approved earlier this year and known as an intelligence finding broadly permits the CIA and other US agencies to provide support that could help the rebels oust Assad.

This and other developments signal a shift toward growing, albeit still circumscribed, support for Assad’s armed opponents – a shift that intensified following last month’s failure of the UN security council to agree on tougher sanctions against the Damascus government.

The White House is for now apparently stopping short of giving the rebels lethal weapons, even as some US allies do just that.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:50 am


zoo said:

Syrian Fighting Intensifies in Battle for Control of Aleppo
Published: August 2, 2012

“It’s a rapid escalation,” said Andrew J. Tabler, a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “Once you start using fixed-wing aircraft and you have a city under full revolt, it’s clear that the Assad regime is not going to stop and is not breaking. We’re entering a new phase of this conflict.”

Mr. Tabler noted that the Syrian warplanes were not yet dropping bombs. But the calculated escalation in the use of jets seemed to be part of a concerted effort by Mr. Assad to rally his supporters by making clear that he would not limit his military effort.

This week, it has become increasingly clear to outside military analysts that the fighting is likely to drag on in Aleppo. Helicopters thwacked overhead Wednesday as clashes broke out around several more police stations, which have become a focal point for rebels seeking to hold neighborhoods or gain ground.

rebels in Aleppo caused an outcry among rights groups and others over their videotaped public executions of men identified as pro-government militiamen.

Human Rights Watch described the killings as a “war crime,” and as it began to take on greater significance as a symbol of rebel street justice, the rebels and activists tried pivoting on Wednesday afternoon to an example of what they described as a regime “massacre.”

August 2nd, 2012, 8:05 am


Halabi said:

A few months ago Assad’s army lowered the education standards for new recruits to prey on the poor and unemployed citizens of Syria. Now the police force is looking for those with at least a sixth grade education to join the ranks.

I’m sure the semi-literate here will say that the FSA doesn’t have standards, etc. That is true but it doesn’t take away from the fact that the current Syrian government is struggling to find people to join it or is seeking to formalize its relationship to the shabi7a. Either way, an under-educated police force and military places all citizens in danger.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:19 am


bronco said:

Is Syria moving into the Libyan model ?
Aleppo=Benghazi , Damascus=Tripoli

The only missing important ingredients are NATO and the TNC

Will the sauce work without a strong foreign military support and without a strong and united local opposition front?

August 2nd, 2012, 8:33 am


Son of Damascus said:

Another massacre happened in Damascus yesterday…


August 2nd, 2012, 8:35 am


irritated said:

#103 SOD

Only one?

August 2nd, 2012, 8:49 am


zoo said:

Fouad Ajami : Obama should leave
From the very beginning, Mr. Obama has been a herald of a “declinist” reading of America. We can’t aid the Syrians, our touch would sully them. We can’t identity ourselves with the democratic aspirations of the Iranians, for we must conciliate their rulers. We can’t defend the cause of liberty and freedom, for in that Obamian worldview, freedom is a fragile, uncertain bet the world over.

So our Secretary of State circles the globe, nine countries in thirteen days in one recent expedition. The bet of this president is that the American people will neither notice, nor care about, the erosion of the American ascendency that enabled this country to do good and to do well in the order of nations. Come November, the country will deliver its verdict on this stunted vision of its place in the world.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:52 am


irritated said:

Davutoglu is boycotting and antogonizing Al Malaki and flirting with Barzani.

Is Turkey working on another Qatar-KSA plot for a ‘Sunni’ regime change in Iraq too?

August 2nd, 2012, 9:07 am


habib said:

90. annie

I see, so the FSA can blame their crimes on al-Qaeda! Wasn’t that what you accused the government of doing with the “Shabiha”?

The double standards here are getting more incredible by the day! Is there anything the opposition hasn’t done yet which it accuses the government of doing (thereby justifying his ouster)?

August 2nd, 2012, 9:14 am


Son of Damascus said:


Artouz which I linked yesterday, Yalda earlier, and as well in basateen.

So that makes it three massacres committed in Damascus yesterday, by your dear leader.

Everything is back to normal in Damascus eh Irritated?

Btw what do you think of the Assadi forces razing the basateen behind the Razi Hospital, did you know the cactus trees (Sabarah) were bulldozed and many of the neighbourhoods as well by the Assadi forces?

August 2nd, 2012, 9:26 am


zoo said:


Sorry to destroy your Al Jazeera propaganda item.

You wrote
that a storm from the south is about to blow

Reported in media:
Jordan says no clashes occurred between Jordanian, Syrian armies

AMMAN, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) — Jordan on Thursday rejected as groundless media reports saying that clashes erupted between the Jordanian and Syrian armies at Thursday dawn.

“The Syrian army opened fire on a group of Syrians as they were trying to enter Jordan, injuring some of them slightly,” Minister of State for Information and Media Affairs Samih Maaytah, said in a statement to Xinhua Thursday.

“The gunshots heard at the Jordanian-Syrian border and in different border areas were fired by the Syrian army on the Syrian citizens trying to flee to Jordan,” said the minister.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:28 am


Son of Damascus said:


From the BBC:

Syrian soldiers fired on Jordanian troops who were waiting to take in refugees at the border, according to Jordanian officials

Sorry to destroy your Xinhua/RT/SANA propaganda item…

August 2nd, 2012, 9:35 am


irritated said:

108. Son of Damascus

I wonder what is your criteria to decide which is a ‘massacre’, ‘lynching’,’summary executions’, ‘fights’ etc..
In civil war, everything and anything is called “massacre” by the ones who are on the victims side.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:35 am


zoo said:

#110. Son of Damascus

Thanks for the BBC’s interpretations of the event. BBC is also a propaganda tool for the anti-regime as you can read here.

AMMAN — The government on Thursday dismissed as inaccurate news reports of border clashes between Jordanian and Syrian forces.

Government spokesperson Samih Maaytah said the Syrian army shot at Syrian refugees attempting to cross into Jordan late Wednesday, injuring several of them.

Maaytah described their injuries as light.

He said the Jordan Armed Forces work to ensure the security of refugees crossing into Jordan, offering them all possible assistance until they are transported to refugee camps.

Several news websites and television stations reported “heavy exchange of fire” between the two armies at four different border locations, saying that one Jordanian soldier was injured in the process.

Maaytah dismissed these reports as inaccurate and said that any shooting reported by residents of those areas is targeting refugees attempting to escape violence in their country.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:43 am


Son of Damascus said:


When civilians are arrested and then summarily executed its called a massacre.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:46 am


Son of Damascus said:


Didn’t the Jordanians “deny” this happened the last time then came out and said otherwise later on?
قالت مصادر أمنية وطبية إن جنديا أردنيا ولاجئين سوريين اثنين أصيبوا صباح الخميس في اشتباك اندلع عندما فتح جنود سوريون النار على دوريات أردنية كانت بانتظار نقل الفارين من أعمال العنف في سورية.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:52 am


irritated said:

113. Son of Damascus

How and who can prove they were innocent civilians and not armed rebels or operators or women and children caught in crossfires?
Unless there is an objective investigation of the circumstances of the event, like the Houla incomplete one, calling any killing a “massacre” is often a trick to move public opinion and call for UN ‘humanitarian’ intervention.
Unfortunately just any killing is now called “a massacre”. The word has lost its value.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:53 am


zoo said:

114. Son of Damascus

You mean that the BBC has already decided that the Jordanians will change their mind later? I see, they read Jordanian’s mind?

You call that serious journalism?

August 2nd, 2012, 9:59 am


Tara said:

Syria: UN Security Council inaction earns reprimand from General Assembly
The UN General Assembly is voting Thursday to demand that Syrian President Assad step down. The symbolic move will also chastise the Security Council, where Russia and China have vetoed firmer action.

By Howard LaFranchi | Christian Science Monitor – 1 hr 17 mins ago

Frustrated with the Security Council’s inaction on Syria, the United Nations General Assembly is set to take matters into its own hands Thursday and demand that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad step down.
The purely symbolic resolution, sponsored by Arab League countries that have pressed the more powerful Security Council to take action against President Assad, calls on the embattled Syrian leader to cede power to a transitional government. The resolution also demands that the Syrian Army stop its heavy-arms and helicopter attacks on the Syrian populace.
The question now seems to be not whether the resolution will pass, but with how many votes in favor. A General Assembly vote in February on a resolution condemning Syrian authorities’ “widespread and systematic” human rights violations garnered a commanding 137 votes. Only 12 countries voted against that resolution, but some UN officials speculate that a larger slice of the assembly’s 193 members will balk at voting for a head of state’s ouster, even as a symbolic gesture.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:05 am


Son of Damascus said:


Maybe the word massacre has lost its value to you, it has not to me. These images still shock me every time as if I am seeing them for the first time.

The people of Artouz were arrested by the Republican guard, and then shot in the head in point blank.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:10 am


Son of Damascus said:


Did you read the Arabic link? Jordanians CONFIRMED it. Guess BBC was correct after all…

Do you call Xinhua serious journalism? Don’t they just copy and paste what SANA puts out 90% of the time?

August 2nd, 2012, 10:12 am


zoo said:

120. Son of Damascus

Arabic link please?

August 2nd, 2012, 10:15 am


Son of Damascus said:


While I agree that the Assad regime is not an Alawi regime I disagree with you regarding Havez discrimination towards the Alawis in Syria to a point.

I think Havez purposely discriminated against the educated notable Alawis (That would have perhaps challenged him) while empowered the lesser notables from the Alawi community, some of whom come from families that have historically been intermediaries between the peasants that worked the farms and the absent landowners. These intermediaries (Called Khullis or Shubasis) traditionally acted as “agents” of the landowners, and many peasants from the Alawi community saw these khullis as the epitome of forces and injustice.

Havez had Alawis from all the tribes working for him (Al-Kalbiyyah, Khayatin, Matawirah, Marawirah and Haddadin) for instance Ali Duba was from the Matawirah clan, while Ali Haydar was from Haddadin, Mohammad Nassif from Havez’s tribe of Kalbiyyah…

Now from all the major Alawi figures that Havez surrounded himself with I believe just one of them came from a notable Alawi family, and that was Ali Haydar. I believe Ali’s grand father is a revered figure in the Alawi community a sheikh that was renowned for his reformist ideas, there is Qubbah built at his grave site in the town near Jableh. (I have been told that Ali Duba comes from a notable family, I don’t know if that is true or not, would welcome any additional information if you have any)

August 2nd, 2012, 10:16 am


Son of Damascus said:


See comment 114

August 2nd, 2012, 10:17 am


zoo said:

#120 SOD

Doesn’t the BBC regularly cut and paste what Rami Abdel Rahman reports?
BCC has also posted a fake photo provided by the expat opposition without even checking their authenticity.
Chinese media has never carried rumors.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:20 am


Amjad said:

To be executed by the FSA, you’d have to have racked up a months long record of being a murderous thug.

To be executed by the regime, it’s enough that you are “caught” carrying medicine or food for refugees.

To be murdered by the shabiha, it’s enough to be from the “wrong” neighborhood or family. I shed as many tears over the shabiha as one would over Nazi concentration camp guards (ie none).

“Chinese media has never carried rumors.”

A rumor is a piece of news whose authenticity cannot be verified. A piece of lying propaganda however, is a lie that the person who repeats it, knows to be a lie. You are a rather unique individual, as you seem to be the only one on this planet who thinks that Chinese media is more credible than the BBC.

How many Chinese reporters were ever in Homs? How many are in Aleppo? Now ask yourself how many times the magnificent BBC has sent reporters to the worst hot spots in Syria. Paul Woods must have spent more time in Libya, Afghanistan and Syria than he has in Britain recently.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:20 am


zoo said:

#123 SOD

What counts is the official statement from the government and not the ‘unknown’ source….
As usual BBC and Al Jazeera prefer the “unconfirmed” version and rumor that suit their agenda.

يأتي هذا فيما قالت مصادر أردنية طلبت عدم الكشف عنها إن الاشتباك الأحدث شكل أول مرة لاستهداف القوات السورية مباشرة القوات الأردنية،في خطوة قالوا إنها استهدفت الضغط على عمان لإغلاق حدودها أمام اللاجئين.

ونفت الحكومة الأردنية مرارا أي تصعيد في التوتر عبر الحدود،قائلة إنه بالرغم من أن دمشق فتحت النار على السوريين الفارين إلى الأردن ، لم تتدخل القوات الأردنية ولم تشتبك مع القوات السورية.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:32 am



Hey Zoo,

You’re not worried the fourth brigade thugs will get chased to their pits by the Jordanian army, are you? They can last for years, right?

Anyway, we do not take seriously anything reported by SANA, Press, Alam, Xinhua, RT or this new disgruntled offshoot wannabe Mayadeen. If we read them, we read them only for entertainment.


Heads up for things to come: Panneta is in Amman for plans on post-Assad Syria.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:35 am


zoo said:

#125 AMJAD

A rumor is a piece of news whose authenticity cannot be verified.

BCC as well as Al Jazeera have carried several of such rumors and presented them as a real events, only to (sometimes) deny then later.. The list is long.

Chinese media never did that. They only accept as real the official statements not the ones from unknown and dubious ‘sources’.

As such Chinese media has shown to be most honest and reliable, though less dramatic and entertaining.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:39 am


Tara said:

Obama signs order supporting Syria’s rebels, reports say

US government source acknowledges that US is collaborating with a secret ‘nerve centre’ operated by Turkey and its allie, Thursday 2 August 2012 04.25 EDT

But US and European officials have said that there have been noticeable improvements in the coherence and effectiveness of Syrian rebel groups in the past few weeks. That represents a significant change in assessments of the rebels by western officials, who previously characterised Assad’s opponents as a disorganised, chaotic, rabble.
Precisely when Obama signed the secret intelligence authorisation, an action not previously reported, could not be determined.
The full extent of support that agencies like the CIA might be providing also is unclear.
White House spokesman Tommy Vietor declined to comment.
A government source acknowledged that under provisions of the presidential finding, the US was collaborating with a secret command centre operated by Turkey and its allies.
Also on Wednesday, the US treasury confirmed it had granted authorisation to the Syrian Support Group, Washington representative of the Free Syrian Army, to conduct financial transactions on the rebel group’s behalf. The authorisation was first reported on Friday by al-Monitor, a Middle East news website.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:50 am


zoo said:

Heads up for things to come: Panneta is in Amman for plans on post-Assad Syria.

I don’t think so.

I think Panetta is trying to lure Jordan to join in a war of invasion together with Turkey, if the situation goes really bad for the rebels.
The CIA is in Turkey already making the arrangements.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:55 am



Annan threw the towel on his mission admitting failure. He asked UN not to renew his mission.

It was over anyway end of the month two weeks ago.


No Zoo,

“if the situation goes really bad for the rebels.”

That is a BIG BIG BIG IF.

But I am sure the people of Damascus, Homs and Hama would welcome the Jordanian army with roses and hugs.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:13 am


bronco said:

Is a Jordanian-Turk military coalition in the making?

Jordan is under pressure from the USA, Qatar and Saudi Arabia to offer its military power to serve their military intervention in Syria in both cases, if the rebels are crushed and if they win.

Once Jordan and Turkey have agreed on a joint action, under the CIA auspices, and are ready to strike, the ‘massacres’ reports will increase and the UNSC will call for a ‘humanitarian’ intervention, even bypassing the Russian and China veto.

Then the plan is that the Jordanian and the Turkish army will invade Syria to ‘save’ and ‘protect’ the civilians threatened in Aleppo.

Until now Turkey has refused to act alone militarily as it is not Arab. If the Jordanians are persuaded to act with the Turks, even symbolically, then the Turks may move on.

The wild card would then be Iran, Iraq, the Kurds.

The risks of loosing that war: The Jordan king may loose his throne, Obama may loose his election, Erdogan looses his face, his country’s economy and Kurdistan.

The risks of winning: The same situation as the USA army when it occupied militarily Iraq: Increased and long term internal violence, fights against islamists, country scission etc.. another Iraq.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:14 am


zoo said:

Further desintegration of the SNC: the Kurds wild card

Kurdish opposition quits Syrian National Council

By Lauren Williams The Daily Star
2nd August 2012

ISTANBUL: The Syrian Kurdish opposition bloc has walked away from the Syrian National Council, exposing deep and problematic rifts within the umbrella opposition group just days after international leaders granted the body extra recognition after attempts to unify.

Syrian Kurdish opposition leader Abdul-Baki Yousef, a leading member of the Kurdish Yakiti party in Syria and former member of the Kurdish National Council, charged host country Turkey with “pressuring the SNC” to omit the demands of the Kurdish opposition members in the final constitution document outlining a transition plan for Syria.

“There was nothing clear about our nationalistic issues. It’s clear that the Islamists and the Muslim Brotherhood are the majority of the council so they play a main role in the council.

“The Muslim Brotherhood has an old relationship with Turkey, they are allies of the Turkish government,” he said.

“Of course we welcome the Brotherhood’s effective contribution to the revolution and support of individual freedoms and pluralism in Syria … but their attitude is highly influenced by the Turks, and that’s what we saw clearly displayed in the national charter.”

August 2nd, 2012, 11:28 am


ghufran said:
I and many others have uncomfortably watched Syria’s christian population shrinks from around 12% to less than 5% over the last three decades,more outward emigration is likely now. for centuries,this segment of Syria’s population was a reliable indicator of how well Syria is doing,first the Ottomans,then Baathist rule and now a civil war,I guess we all know how well Syria was doing !!

August 2nd, 2012, 11:30 am


ann said:

Russia opposes Syria resolution proposed by Arab countries – 2012-08-02

MOSCOW, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) — Russia would not support a draft U.N. resolution on Syria proposed by several Arab countries, the Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

The draft resolution, submitted to the U.N. General Assembly was “one-sided and unbalanced,” the ministry said in a statement published on its website.

“Moscow believes that the document in its current form does not contribute to the stabilization of the situation and does not help cease violence in Syria. For this reason, Russia will not support it,” the ministry said.

The resolution simply “put the entire responsibility” for the crisis on the Syrian authorities and did not mention the international community’s requirements for the opposition, the statement said, adding the approach would encourage the opposition to continue its armed conflict.

Several Arab nations last week turned to the General Assembly to seek approval of a resolution calling for a “political transition” and the establishment of a “democratic government” in Syria, after members of the Security Council failed to reach consensus on the issue.

The draft resolution also calls for sanctions against Damascus.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov has slammed the move, saying it was “incorrect” to raise this issue at the General Assembly, because it was the Security Council that dealt with problems of sanctions.

Unlike decisions by the Security Council, the General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding.

The foreign ministry reiterated the position in its Thursday statement, saying Russia believed such a resolution intruded on the prerogatives of the U.N. Security Council and ran contrary to the U.N. Charter provisions.

It also shifted the focus of a peace plan brokered by U.N.-Arab League joint special envoy Kofi Annan to the problem of ensuring political transition in Syria, which was not part of his current mandate, the ministry said.


August 2nd, 2012, 11:32 am


Amjad said:


“They only accept as real the official statements”

So basically, they copy/paste whatever SANA says? The same people who claimed that all the demonstrations we see on Al-Jazeera are in Qatar and that Blackwater were in Baba Amr? And I thought being taken in by “official statements” went out with Wateregate.

“not the ones from unknown and dubious ‘sources’.”

Ah, but the sources *are* known, just not to you. By now all major news organizations have a network of sources that have proven highly reliable in the past. Or do you imagine that a team of reporters can stay weeks at a time in Syria without there first being someone to hold their hands?

“only to (sometimes) deny then later”

As opposed to SANA who never deny anything. Did Mu’alem ever apologize for the fiasco of his horror movie, where it turned out that the scenes he was showing were in Tripoli, and not Homs? And if you are so concerned about accuracy, have your prethident allow the world press free and unfettered access to events on the ground. But we both know that a free press is as welcome in Syria as a division of NATO forces.

Bronco, your posts always remind me of the Joker in The Dark Knight. Why so serious? When Bashar is overthrown, the world will have prevented the occurrence of “a thousand Afghanistans” as he so ridiculously put it. Bashar can’t even hold on to the countryside, it’s highly doubtful he can prevent a NATO invasion from the North and South if it came to that. And who is going to fight for him after he’s gone? The shabiha who have proven so spectacularly inept up until now?

Seriously people, we can put the “just like Iraq” scarecrow to rest now. Iraq became Iraq in large part because of the Jihadists that Bashar sent there. Eliminate Bashar, and you eliminate one of the major causes of instability in Iraq and other places in the region.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:38 am


zoo said:


Wasn’t Iran the major cause of instability in the region.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:47 am


zoo said:

Peace envoy Annan quits as Syria violence rages … and internet and mobile phones services restored in Aleppo

International envoy Kofi Annan is stepping down, UN chief Ban Ki-moon announced today “with deep regret,” his April peace plan for Syria in tatters in the face of raging violence.

Mobile phone and Internet services, cut since Wednesday night, were being gradually restored in Aleppo by Thursday afternoon.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:49 am



I perceive pro-Assad thugs are very animated and alive today after the yesterdays Kalb Al Assad speech.

The good side of Assad is that he appears as if nothing is going on around him because he does not understand anything.

The bad side is that thanks to Assad stupidity all the excrements acumulated under his ass during 41 years are getting out of the sewer.

Syria is now overflooded of all kind of garbage attitudes and feelings thanks to the imbecile of Assad The Last.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:04 pm


ann said:

I have a comment in the spam que.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:12 pm


Expatriate said:

Redivision of the world. Weekly Review. Vol. 38 (ENG)
Help us break the information blocade! Post this video on English speaking websites!
Помогите разбить информационную блокаду! Распространите это видео как можно шире на англоязычных ресурсах!

Syrian authorities are currently cleaning Allepo of all “fighters”. This large town situated next to the Turkish border was to have become the “fighters'” stronghold, like the Libyan town of Bengazi. But the Syrian army started a big military campaign which, judging by the strong protests and bitter criticism on the part of the West, is quite successful.

A statement issued by the so-called Free Syrian Army serves to prove that the situation “freedom fighters'” have found themselves in is far from being easy. According to the Free Syrian Army spokesperson, they have to resort to guerilla tactics. In other words, the Army cannot withstand an open full-scale military confrontation, as it lacks resources and strength.

This doesn’t mean, however, that the situation in Syria will get less serious. In fact, it is the other way round — the worse the situation is for the “fighters”, the faster the international pressure grows. This week the Kurds factor has come into play.

Kurds inhabit a region known as Kurdistan, which includes adjacent parts of Iran, Iraq, Turkey and Syria. According to some estimates, they number about 60 ml people. Since 1840 they have strived for creating an independent Kurdish nation state. Kurds’ biggest success was in Iraq, where following the collapse of Saddam Hussein’s regime they got their autonomous entity. But the idea of Great Kurdistan implies that it must encompass parts of Iran, Turkey and Syria. And it is Turkey that is Kurds’ toughest opponent. Over the last decades Kurdistan Workers’ Party has fought fiercely for independence from the Turkish State. According to some estimates, the death toll may now reach 35.000.

It was clear that sooner or later the Kurdish factor would come into play in the Middle East conflict. Syrian Kurds, while not exactly being pro-government, don’t support the “freedom fighters” either.
Al-Assad decided to play this card and withdrew his troops from the towns in the north-west of the country, giving the Kurds control over this area. Thus, Kurds received a pretty large territory near the Turkish border and immediately established their Kurdish national mejlis.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:12 pm


Juergen said:

Der Spiegel:

“We are the new government”

By Rania Salloum

The Syrian rebels are bursting with confidence. Just 40 kilometers from the hard-fought Aleppo they have hoisted their flag. The dictator of Syria Assad no longer exist for them – they have already established their own state.

“Its only 40 kilometers from Aleppo and Bashar al-Assad’s Syria does not exist anymore. Above the bordercheckpoint with Turkey flies the flag of the insurgents. Rebel leader Ahmad Zakkaria stands in jeans and sandals at the border and receives a delegation from Turkey, who for the first time ventured to the other side: Odaba Yusuf, governor of the province Kiliz, and Asim Güzelbey, mayor of Gaziantep.”

The Turks, Syrians and discuss about the refugees who arrive daily from Aleppo – Turkish refugee camps are overcrowded. Rebel leader Ahmad said that they had also housed refugees on the Syrian side. But there is a lack of everything, especially bread, water and cooking gas. He hopes for help from the Turkish neighbors.
Where are the refugees in Syria live, reveals another rebel later: They bring them near the village Aasas in houses that were previously owned by Alawites. To what extent the former owners left voluntarily or were possibly killed, he does not betray. The words “Alawit” and “representative of the government”, he uses as if they were synonyms.

The regime of Syria’s President Assad’s falls apart. In the north of the country a second state is created, run by the Free Syrian Army which acts as the umbrella organization for the Syrian rebel fighters. A few dozen kilometers further south, it seems as if the insurgents could hold Aleppo – the economic capital and largest city of Syria. Assad is no longer president of this country as a whole: he is a warlord and presides over an increasingly religiously active militia which control in parts cities and the coastal regions.

At the checkpoint three cars from Aleppo arrive, cars of refugees, who want to continue their way to Turkey. They come from Assad’s Syria. Unlike the insurgents at the border they do not want to get photographed or get their names published. In Hananu and Dschdideh there is less shooting now,but there was hardly any food, they report. In the meanwhile, the rebels would control 60 to 80 percent of the city.

As none of the rebels is near, they add: “The security situation in the city is bad” – regardless of whether the area is controlled by the regime or the rebels. Although they would prefer the Free Syrian Army over the regimes milita. On Wednesday rebels had apparently executed several men who they believed to be loyal to the regime, in Aleppo.

The chief of the border post, Ahmad, and a few rebels come closer. They unload the baggage of the fugitives, and open the trunk – customs control. Another rebel brings the passports to the office of the border post. There, Abdul Rahman is sitting at the computer and transfers neatly name, birth year, sex and origin of the refugees in an Excel spreadsheet. He also has Internet, with a Turkish supplier. “We manage to carry out a revolution, then of course, we have to control the border properly,” said Abdul Rahman. Fax, printer, air conditioning, TV – everything is still there. Only the portraits of President Assad are gone.

“We must pay attention to our image,” says Ahmad Zakkaria, “we have to show abroad, that we are able to maintain control.” After the Free Syrian Army abbout two weeks ago had driven out the Assad troops from the border post, criminals and jihadists had gained control over it in the last week – and triggered worldwide terror. In Syria, meanwhile a number of armed groups are on the road, including foreign jihadists and al-Qaeda.

Ahmad knows exactly how important is the impression given by the new Syrian insurgents abroad. A Syria without Assad is still hard to imagine without international support. The rebel leader now speaks of a free and democratic Syria and the fact that he will return to be a civilian once the war is over. He wants to return to his kiosk, a few hundred meters away from the border. Ahmad was a salesman before the uprising and then a rebel leader and now responsible for the border post of Al Salama.

That Assad’s troops might come back, he does not believe.

“Never. Bashar can not even leave Damascus. We are the new government.”


August 2nd, 2012, 12:37 pm


Erin said:

the images and pictures of the rebel acts is going to haunt them back and backfire against any support they can get from the other countries, it only proves that Assad, Russia, china are against thugs, terroirsits, killers no better than the regime.
Syria is another lebanon in the 80’s and will be like this for years to come that’s what Bashar warrned off in the past.

August 2nd, 2012, 12:48 pm


Juergen said:

excerpt from the articel i posted in post 143

“A few hours later the noise of automatic weapons penetrates across the schoolyard. There are hundreds of shots. First Baraa says that it was a question of salutes, because a large number of rebels Shabiha militiamen had been taken in custody. But later Baraa received several video clips that show what really happened.

The rebels had entered into a standstill agreement with the Shabiha militia of the local clan Berri said Baraa, to prepare us for the brutal video. But then, 15 rebels were killed in an ambush in fron of the villa of Berri. Then the FSA attacked the sprawling. After they defeated the clan, they arrested the leadership of the Berri-family, among them Zaino Berri, a notorious Assad supporter. The family was known for being professional criminals, smugglers, of narcotics and arms. Him and the other leaders of the Shabiha bring the fighters in the school, where we later try to interview some of the less important militiamen.
Everything is red with blood
Later, Ahmed brings us to the villa of Berri. The walls are covered with bullet holes from bullets and rocket-propelled grenades littered. Standing in a large hall Ahmed says: “Here the clan has held lavish parties. From here Berri’s men fired on our demonstrators and killed many people and arrested them.Where was the world at the time? The world now cares, if we shoot a few criminals? Here every child knows in this city that Zaino Berri and his associatesare responsible for the death of many people. And the life of unarmed civilians, men, women and children. Is not it about justice, if we kill these killers? “

August 2nd, 2012, 1:02 pm


Antoine said:

What will Assad’s supporters do, anyone who supports Assad should look at the video of the Berri killing, Assad supporters and lovers will be simply rendered to the other side, simple equation for the FSA.. I think the rest of the Berris should be rendered to the other side as well, it is a mistake to keep them alive, they do not deserve even a kangaroo court trial.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:14 pm


SC Moderator said:


I trashed your comment in regard to the Mufti. I placed you on moderation last time. Next time you will be banned. Inciting violence against group of people is against SC rules. Please consider this your final warning.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:25 pm


Aldendeshe said:

What do you think Aldendeshe ? Would you and SNP mind if FSA snuffed out the Muftis like they did to the Berris ? Would you think that will be an anti-Syria act ?

We think you insurgents are shouting yourselves in the foot in the long run. Eventually, people will rebel against your ways and side with Assad. The longer this drags on, the smellier you will become. Syrians will support those that set life better for them, not make it hellisher. But how is Hasson is a prize strategic victory? Don’t you have better goals than taking out someone wearing a skirt?

August 2nd, 2012, 1:27 pm



144. Erin said:

“the images and pictures of the rebel acts is going to haunt them back and backfire against any support they can get from the other countries, it only proves that Assad, Russia, china are against thugs, terroirsits, killers no better than the regime.”

Of course Erin, only rebels acts will backfire. Not Assad’s thugs acts. You cannot consider that deaths on Assad’s side are the backfire they got for all the crimes committed previously ???

Habibi, just let me remind you:

Day 1, 15 March 2011, Daraa – Demnstrators bulleted by moukhabaraat forces. DID YOU LIKE THIS?

Your arguments are an absolute falacy, you put de conseqeunce as a cause.

You say there is rain because there is water in the ground when correct argument is there is water in the ground because there is rain.

Assad violence was the cause of rebels violence. Do not try to cheat yourself and cheat all of us too.

August 2nd, 2012, 1:30 pm


ghufran said:

“To be executed by the FSA, you’d have to have racked up a months long record of being a murderous thug”
I am glad there are still people who believe this garbage,it is a sign that no matter how slow or wrong one can be,there will be somebody else who is even slower and more wrong.
that statement is not just wrong,it stinks,it basically labels every victim of assassination by the opposition as a thug or a murderer, this kind of filth is only worthy of a sewage pond not a respectable blog.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:07 pm


ghufran said:

أعلن وزير المصالحة الوطنية علي حيدر أنه لن يخرج من محافظة اللاذقية إلا بوجود رؤية وآلية واضحة للوصول إلى إنجاز أولي يبدأ من مدينة الحفة، وأضاف خلال لقائه أمس مع فعاليات محافظة اللاذقية ومدينة الحفة، إنه «ما لم يستطع معالجته فسيعالجه عن طريق رئيس الجمهورية لعودة كل مواطن بكرامته». وأكد حيدر أن الأزمة في سورية ليست مستعصية على الحل، وأن البلاد ليست ذاهبة إلى حرب أهلية كما يروج لها خارجياً.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:16 pm


anwar said:

Assad inevitable fall is coming. All of his cronies, no just the killers and rapists but also the leeches will be brought to justice. All of your precious cars, villas, gold and millions will be given back to the people where they belong.

I laugh at the Al-Quaeda claims. Do you think Syria lacks man power? do you think the revolution has any trouble recruiting people? We have people and military strategist. Foreign fighters are useless, they dont know the cities and they can’t communicate with Syrians. Yet more bs propaganda.

What the revolution needs is new RPGs thats all…looks like they are getting them soon.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:27 pm


Elian said:

Pro Syria people are gone!
it is either pro regime or Pro revolution which the latter means not much better than the former and all into AlQaida/MB basket.
Syria refused to be under the umbrella of the MB as happened in Egypt but with both regime and revolution both destroying Syria, the people lost their voice.
it is a matter of time before Syria becomes like Somalia.
The source of destruction in Syria is countries like KSA and GCC these countries probably without the oil they have would have continued to be dirty, poor, uneducated and fighting each other over a piece of grass its flock.
it is only the Levant which is been the light of the middle east and now it is becoming the darkest area of the world. Thank you USA/Israel and the pigs of other countries.
time will come when USA will be Hunting radicals in Syria i said that in the past and i will insist on it.
History always repeat itself and no running away from drones hovering over Syria hunting terrorists, it is matter of years, and BTW forget about the world democracy in the arab world this belongs to be who are able to live in civility.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:29 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

Such a disconnected story of Syria today — especially here in comments. An invocation of two narratives does not do justice to the extremes, or the vacancy at the heart of Syrian officialized news and myth.

See the rhetoric of Baath hysteria, is exemplified in the hidden, passive President, but a figurehead of the security maniacs who cannot stop the war machine that imprisons them and dictates action. Total War. Terrorists. Crush.

All opponents are stripped of their humanity and their extermination is justified by this sick war logic: replace the SANA-tized word terrorist and replace with ‘enemy combatant’ or defected General or deserting conscripts. Under this tent term is swept everone and anything that moves with a spirit of defiance to the Security Solution.

This crazed rhetoric of total war and of ‘terrorists’ and calls to arms (if conscripting every adult male Syrian on earth were not enough, now they beat the drum for slaughter, leaning on the unlettered, teens, retired ‘volunteers’ with dire TV commercials) — it follows is one of several instructions in the Baath playbook for When Things Get Ugly For Us: the main instruction is Escalate, Propagandize, Pound the Sh*t out of anything that looks rebellious.

This insane playbook has no plan B, no stand-down orders, no crisis brief, no instructions on making peace or accomodation. The last page in the book says, “Turn up all the knobs! Use all military means against civilians. Unleash the terror of Shabiha. Crush crush crush. Good luck!”

A President virtually mute, reduced to flapping his hands in no-sound videos, prisoner of the dead-end playbook and the hideous military dictatorship that his father constructed. The Parliament moribund, stupefied, irrelevant, the Vice-Presidents inert, the Cabinet stenographers of Baath directives, hobbled by Syrian Francoism. The only ones who are in the driver’s seat are Military/Security/Intelligence.

See this excellent interactive presentation on the power centres of the Syrian regime and their losses to defection>

The tragic non-specificity of the “terrorist” war talk is that each defected senior military man in the telling Guardian data became subject to execution as a terrorist the moment he shut the playbook and walked away. It is these men who refused to obey the maniacs who are the greatest weakness of the Assadist war machine, and the key to the end of the security solution. There can be no peace with the present leadership of the military.


Ghufran, I answered your remarks in the last comment thread, #344.

August 2nd, 2012, 2:39 pm


Aldendeshe said:


Allah Yewaffak, may Allah bless you and make you victor.

الله يوفقك وينصركم الله يعظّم وينصر المسلمين المجاهدين لتنسى فلسطين الأسلامية والقدس نحن معكم بكل نصرة جهاد حتى تحرير مكة المكرمة مسقط واندالوسيا باكو وكازاخستان انشآ الله

Remember, there are Moslems in Palestine that needs your Islamic Courage, don’t forget Jerusalem, Mecca and Masqat. With your Islamic Courage and Allah support the Ummah will soon liberate Andalusia, Tangier, Baku and Kazakhstan, all will be for the Ummah. Muwaiya Capital will be in Mecca again soon. Keep up the fight. The Moslems of Palestine will soon have an honorable life under Allah and by his strength all the way to the red sea they will enjoy the land that Allah, with your Jihad will rewards them. Even the Christians of Palestine will be calling on Allah in prayer and thanks. Keep up the Jihad against the evil Zionists and their hired help in Arabia. Educate yourself, Learn who is your friend and who is your enemy: read here: Click on all the links on these websites, Allah gave you this knowledge to make you strong and guide you to victory to accomplish his goal for the Moslem Ummah.

I leave you with this Quranic Verse from souret AL ANFAL 30: “They Plot and Plan but Allah also plans, and Allah is the best of planners”

August 2nd, 2012, 3:03 pm


zoo said:

Good actors or desperate soldiers: FSA rebels in Homs

Free Syrian Terrorists Army Begs for Help from their Country Saudi Arabia

August 2nd, 2012, 3:16 pm


irritated said:

#156 WSS

Yes.. Yes… obviously you are not in Syria. Your doom is a natural reaction of an expat who believes that a “revolution” is going on in Syria, when it is a war that the government is managing it extremely well in view of the magnitude and power of its enemies.
Syrians are strong and resilient. They will pass through that crisis and recover.

You can continue to complain and cry if it relieves your anxiety but don’t expect me and others to believe or share your gloom

August 2nd, 2012, 3:25 pm


anwar said:

you are speaking on behalf of a tiny- soon to be deported, exiled, judged- minority.
you don’t represent Syrians
You are right, Syrians are strong and resilient which is why Assad will fail. Time is against you. Whatever interest you still have in the country, I would say cut your losses and get everything out.
You are great bantering but I think it is getting to your head.

August 2nd, 2012, 3:32 pm


zoo said:

I think he is polite..
Iran’s president mocks Romney visit to Israel
Associated Press – Tue, Jul 31, 2012

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is calling a visit to Israel by U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney as “kissing the foot” of the Jewish state to boost his bid for the White House.

Romney spokesman is less polite
WARSAW, Poland – A Mitt Romney spokesman reprimanded reporters traveling with the candidate on his six-day foreign trip, telling them to “kiss my a**” after they shouted questions from behind a rope line.–abc-news-politics.html

August 2nd, 2012, 3:34 pm


irritated said:

#160 Anwar

you are speaking on behalf of a tiny- soon to be deported, exiled, judged- minority.

Interesting. You mean you are threatening me and all the minorities of deportation, one you get your Sunni-only “democratic” Syrian government.
I hope you don’t represent the Syrians, because it would make anyone throw up.
You better stay where you are.

August 2nd, 2012, 3:42 pm


ann said:

Russia opposes Syria resolution proposed by Arab countries – 2012-08-02

MOSCOW, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) — Russia would not support a draft U.N. resolution on Syria proposed by several Arab countries, the Foreign Ministry said Thursday.

The draft resolution, submitted to the U.N. General Assembly was “one-sided and unbalanced,” the ministry said in a statement published on its website.

“Moscow believes that the document in its current form does not contribute to the stabilization of the situation and does not help cease violence in Syria. For this reason, Russia will not support it,” the ministry said.

The resolution simply “put the entire responsibility” for the crisis on the Syrian authorities and did not mention the international community’s requirements for the opposition, the statement said, adding the approach would encourage the opposition to continue its armed conflict.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov has slammed the move, saying it was “incorrect” to raise this issue at the General Assembly, because it was the Security Council that dealt with problems of sanctions.

Unlike decisions by the Security Council, the General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding.

The foreign ministry reiterated the position in its Thursday statement, saying Russia believed such a resolution intruded on the prerogatives of the U.N. Security Council and ran contrary to the U.N. Charter provisions.


August 2nd, 2012, 3:48 pm


ann said:

I have a post in the spam que.

August 2nd, 2012, 3:51 pm


Anwar said:

“You mean you are threatening me and all the minorities of deportation”

I am only referring to one minority.
what did you think was gonna happen when you butcher a population?
were you expecting flowers and hugs
I am just being realistic…and I really wish resolution can be as civil as I stated because if it is eye for an eye then I would really throw up.

August 2nd, 2012, 3:57 pm


ghufran said:

Chris Doyle-The Guardian:
Diplomacy is not dead but it is in hibernation. Full-scale intervention is still unlikely and no major power is itching to get involved. Annan’s resignation will have little impact on a regime now solely concerned with smashing the armed uprising by all means possible. The bloodshed and destruction in Syria will escalate and the various sides and their external backers will slug it out. The danger is that, only when there is not much left to fight over, will the remaining combatants finally sit down and talk. When they do so, many will look back and wonder at the human and physical cost of not having supported the Annan mission.
( I lived in Syria until I was a young man,and I visited Syria often,I never thought that such a beautiful country has so many haters inside and outside its borders,Syria is our victim,shame on us all)

August 2nd, 2012, 4:06 pm


Tara said:

I am not going to say if Bashar has an oz of decency, he would leave power.  I gave up on Bashar, the psychopath long ago.

Agonizing over Syria
Telegraph View: We can only hope for the swift removal of President Bashar al-Assad and his regime

Now it really is a fight to the finish. Kofi Annan’s resignation as peace envoy to Syria drives home a pitiless message. Both sides in this elemental struggle have chosen to commit themselves utterly to the conflict – the rebels because they are fighting for victory; President Bashar al-Assad, desiccated and flailing, because repression is all he knows.
With the last avenue for diplomacy almost certainly blocked, governments will now consider options that might previously have been unthinkable. America and Turkey are understood to be discussing whether to allow other nations to supply Syria’s rebels with surface-to-air missiles. Mr Assad has dispatched jet fighters on ground-attack missions for the first time, while helicopter gunships are routinely in action.
Enabling his enemies to counter this threat would carry the force of moral and military logic. Yet it would be reckless: the missiles might fall into dangerous hands. In a country where al-Qaeda and sundry extremists are trying to hijack a legitimate revolution, weapons intended to shoot down military jets could, one day, be used against civilian airliners. But by failing to supply the missiles, we leave the Syrians more exposed to their dictator’s fury. At this sombre juncture, every option is deeply unpalatable. We can only hope for the swift removal of Mr Assad and his regime. But we should be humble enough to admit that such an outcome is something over which Britain – and the West – has perilously little control.

August 2nd, 2012, 4:19 pm


Aldendeshe said:

( I lived in Syria until I was a young man,and I visited Syria often,I never thought that such a beautiful country has so many haters inside and outside its borders,Syria is our victim,shame on us all)

I doubt there are 6 Syrians on this blog. They are just stearing Syria on the ground and on the Internet. The Zionists knew Saddam position before they set up a strategy that is designed to come up against his most hard points he will refuse, by design, and it is so for Assad. Chille out, Syria is graveyard for many nations. It is in fact a devine inervention to prevent Zionists from taking over the planet and mark every living human with “mark of the beast” .

This is how all World wars starts, small, one savage event, one country, then it engulf the earth, it is GOD plan to get rid of evil ones. GOD will take over the plot soon.

August 2nd, 2012, 4:22 pm


omen said:

via the guardian, an animated pictograph

Syria conflict: a year of deaths mapped

so many lives snuffed out.

for the critics: what would you do if you were being hunted down to near extinction?

you can see the fault line being formed. forged either to prop up an alawite state (as ajami argues) or a roadmap for the proposed pipeline. maybe both.

August 2nd, 2012, 4:41 pm


omen said:

history/cost/impact of use of artillery:

Our greatest fear is, of course, the use of chemical or biological weapons of mass destruction. But artillery is easier and cheaper to employ to the same effect without the international condemnation that would follow any use of chemicals. Artillery can literally wipe a city off the map, given time, yet the international community seems far more accepting of its use than any other major weapon. Tyrants seem to realize this. We should be just as aghast at the indiscriminate shelling of Aleppo as we were at the mere rumor of Assad using his chemical weapons.

August 2nd, 2012, 4:54 pm


Amjad said:

From page iii of the latest ICG report on Syria

“No single indiscriminate massacre of Alawites has yet to be documented”

Page 15

“A security official from Homs said local Alawite militias –
euphemistically called popular committees (lijan sha’biya) –
had perpetrated the [Karam el Zeitoun] massacre in retaliation for violence to which they had been subjected”

Page 17

“Until now, however, there has been no documented massacre of entire Alawite families.”

“Some Alawites interviewed by Crisis Group, notably within
the security services, said such instances had occurred, though
they failed to provide precise details or material evidence to substantiate their assertions. Crisis Group interviews, central Syria, May 2012. Faced with clear evidence of massacres targeting
Sunnis, the regime and its supporters have variously alleged
(without proof) that the opposition was killing its own supporters”

Page 22

“No Crisis Group interviews, including some with longstanding interlocutors from neighbouring Alawite villages, corroborated
the claim that the [Houla] victims were Shiites”

To witness certain people to claim to love Syria without taking the time to educate oneself about Syria, is to witness crass hypocrisy. No one who doesn’t take the time to read the ICG’s excellent reports can be taken seriously. They are intellectually lazy lightweights.

August 2nd, 2012, 4:56 pm


ghufran said:

أشارت “لجان التنسيق المحلية” المعارضة إلى أن ما حدث في مخيم اليرموك هو جراء قصف عنيف من القوات السورية، بينما أكد مصدر مسؤول في المخيم أن القذائف محلية الصنع ولا يستخدمها الجيش العربي السوري
Palestinian sources indicated that at least 12 people were killed.
the shelling of Mukhayyam Alyarmouk came from Hai Altadamon. there are feverish efforts to engage 500,000 Palestinians in Syria and throw them in the Syrian fire.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:03 pm


ghufran said:

طرابلس- (د ب ا): قال رئيس المجلس الانتقالي الليبي مصطفى عبد الجليل إن قطر أنفقت على الثورة في بلاده أكثر من ملياري دولار، معلنا لأول مرة أن خطة تحرير العاصمة طرابلس تم وضعها في قطر.
وذكرت صحيفة (قورينا) على موقعها الالكتروني الأربعاء أن عبد الجليل قلل من التدخل القطري في ليبيا، معتبرا أنه “هول كثيرا”.
وأضاف عبد الجليل، في لقاء له على هامش جلسات الموسم الثقافي الرمضاني الذي تنظمه كلية الدراسات الإسلامية بمدينة البيضاء، أن “قطر تقوم بدعم التيارات الإسلامية ولها رؤية تتمثل في أن يتم بناء منظومة عربية تعتمد الشريعة الإسلامية كنظام للحكم”.
وتابع “لم يذهب أي شخص ليبي إلى قطر إلا وقاموا بإعطائه مبلغاً من المال، منهم من سلمه للدولة ومنهم من أخذهُ لنفسه”.
وقال “أنا دائماً أقول إن من ينكر الدور القطري حقيقةً هو شخص جاحد”.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:07 pm


Aldendeshe said:

I guess Jews are getting jealous that Arabia managed to send all its unwanted devout Moslems to Syria to be slaughtered under pretext of Jihad, rather than them be charged with war crimes, now Israeli feels they can liquidates Palestinian refugees using the same deceptive plot. ASSAD is an outlaw now and he can get away and blame him for it.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:11 pm


annie said:
First three minutes are about Syria (USA will help and Revolution received serious weapons)
Amy Goodman, one of my favorites

August 2nd, 2012, 5:13 pm


Syrialover said:

The truth about Kofi Annan. He arrogantly got in the way, distracting and wasting precious time with his empty words and slow, useless “diplomacy”.

To quote: “The unassuming enemy (Annan) is dangerous precisely because his efforts offer a deceptive kind of procedural comfort that something is being done, when in fact we have simply provided the killers with time to extend the killing threefold.”

Annan: The unassuming enemy

Kofi Annan deserves condemnation for delaying collective action while the regime’s killing escalates.


The ravaging of Syria by Bashar al-Assad and his coterie has produced a death toll that is now over 17,000. When the numbers are this astronomical, the totality of the devastation is not immediately apparent to onlookers. This is because much of our exposure to the carnage is sanitised through sources whose declared objectivity has shrivelled in such outrageous times to what feels like moral complicity. Whatever our sources, the organised killing of thousands of people by artillery, helicopter gunships, summary executions and snipers should produce a fury that is as total and relentless as the depravity that moves Syria’s killers.

But such fury is in seemingly short supply. Nor is its deficiency helped by the fact that the road to a post-Assad Syria is long and fraught with enemies – the most insidious of whom are polite and mostly unassuming, those whose international respectability shields them from the public condemnation they deserve. They are the ones whose bona fide efforts prolong and distract from the barbarism of those from whom they claim to protect the victims.

Chief among such urbane gentlemen in the Syrian morass is former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

Annan’s peace plan for Syria was launched in February 2012, and is the only one that has attracted and sustained the attention of the international community. Since February, the death toll has risen by more than 11,000, almost tripling the number reported by the UN at the outset of his involvement. The number of forcibly displaced civilians from places like Hama and Homs has long been lost, but it is undoubtedly in the hundreds of thousands.

The atrocities that are being committed today in Syria are twice as staggering as Srebrenica – another modern “never again”, and whose victims we are still being buried today.

Though to say that Syria is also a matter of the UN’s incompetence is to just scratch the surface of the malaise.

The unassuming enemy is dangerous precisely because he is respectable, which prevents us from seeing how he has stifled our ability to oppose al-Assad’s murdering with the needed resolve. The unassuming enemy is dangerous precisely because his efforts offer a deceptive kind of procedural comfort that something is being done, when in fact we have simply provided the killers with time to extend the killing threefold.

For that is the consequence – the dirty opportunity cost – of Mr Annan’s polite procedure, and it demands reckoning.

But the path to collective action of the kind seen in the Libyan Revolution – first and foremost the establishment of a no-fly zone – is today partly barred because Annan is amusing himself with the idea that he is being useful at a juncture when so many of us feel useless. In matters of mass and organised killing, there is no “at least he tried to make it stop”. There is only profound moral failure when one’s efforts sustain and contribute to the system of collective inaction that is at the heart of a threefold increase in deaths.

The entire charade is Kafkaesque. Annan’s inappropriately sedate diplomacy takes him to Moscow and Beijing to barter lives with reactionary regimes whose interests are anathema to a Syria without Assad; they know if his regime crumbles, so too will their moneyed interests.

Even more preposterous was Annan’s recent visit to Tehran, the regional capital of shameless politics, where he met with the Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi. One said that Iran was “part of the solution”, and the other that it “could play a positive role” in what must be one of the most baffling and confusing spectacles of the entire Syrian calamity.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:14 pm


ghufran said:

قالت السباحة السورية بيان جمعة إنها لم تدع الصراع الدائر في بلادها يؤثر على مشاركتها في الأولمبياد.
وابتعدت جمعة عن الخوض في الوضع السياسي في بلادها مؤكدة أنها لا تعير ما يحدث هناك انتباها “لأنها تركز فقط على تدريباتها ودراستها”.
روابط ذات صلة
وأضافت جمعة أنها لا تشاهد التلفاز لكي تتجنب مشاهدة ما يحدث في سوريا.
لكنها أقرت بأنها تشعر ببعض القلق على عائلتها المتواجدة حاليا في مدينة حلب التي تشهد معارك ضارية بين قوات المعارضة المسلحة وقوات الجيش السوري النظامي.
وأضافت أن عائلتها “تعيش في وسط المدينة وهي منطقة آمنة، وأنا على اتصال دائم بأقاربي هناك”.
وعلى الرغم من أن الصراع في سوريا أخذ طابعا طائفيا ما بين السنة الذين يشكلون أغلبية السكان والعلويين الذين يمثلون الأقلية فإن جمعة أكدت أنه لا توجد تفرقة بين أعضاء الفريق المنتمين لكلا الطائفتين “فنحن كلنا سوريون” على حد وصفها.
وقالت جمعة إن تمثيل سوريا في الألعاب الأولمبية “هو حلم لأي شخص”.
وبعد اخفاق جمعة في الوصول لنهائي منافسات السباحة فإنها تنوي القيام بجولة في لندن قبل أن تتوجه عائدة إلى بلدها.
وكانت جمعة قد أقامت معسكرا تدريبيا استمر ثمانية عشر شهرا في فرنسا قبل بدء الألعاب الأولمبي
source: BBC Arabic

August 2nd, 2012, 5:19 pm


omen said:

sc moderator,

please consider removing

i don’t know what it is in response to
but it is not appropriate for this site.


170. AMJAD: To witness certain people to claim to love Syria without taking the time to educate oneself about Syria, is to witness crass hypocrisy. No one who doesn’t take the time to read the ICG’s excellent reports can be taken seriously. They are intellectually lazy lightweights.

why didn’t you post the link! where do i find this report?

August 2nd, 2012, 5:20 pm


SC Moderator said:


Your comment does not belong to SC and therefore was trashed. Similar future comment will ban you from this site completely. Please consider this your final warning.

August 2nd, 2012, 5:26 pm


Tara said:


What was the outcome of the research you conducted last night in regard to the thumb up/thumb down vote? A conspiracy?

Also the one year, two years reply was very funny…

August 2nd, 2012, 5:44 pm


Amjad said:

“Palestinian sources indicated that at least 12 people were killed”

And yet you will not hear a whisper of condemnation by the likes of Ass’ad Abu Khalil, or the armchair moralists. I am thoroughly disgusted by the intellectually bankrupt left.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:02 pm


ann said:

Syria says Turkey sending terrorists to wage war – Aug 2, 2012

Syria accused Turkey on Thursday of playing a “fundamental role” in supporting terrorism by opening its airport and border to al Qaeda and other jihadists to carry out attacks inside Syria

“The Turkish government plays a fundamental role in supporting terrorism by opening its airport and borders to host al Qaeda elements, jihadists and salafists,” Syria’s foreign ministry said in a statement circulated on state television.

“The Turkish government has set up on its soil military offices where Israeli, American, Qatari and Saudi intelligence agencies direct the terrorists in their war on the Syrian people,” the statement said.

Damascus also accused France and the United States of sending rebels communications equipment. U.S. sources have said President Barack Obama signed a secret order authorizing U.S. support for rebels seeking to depose Assad.

Gulf sources told Reuters that Turkey had set up a secret base with allies Saudi Arabia and Qatar to direct vital military and communications aid to Syria’s rebels from the city of Adana near the border.

The statement said Turkey had used the camps as “military bases” for terrorists who then headed to Syria to commit crimes.


August 2nd, 2012, 6:19 pm


ann said:

Iraq accuses Turkey of interfering in affairs – August 2, 2012

Iraq on Thursday accused Turkey of interfering in its internal affairs after Turkey’s foreign minister paid a surprise visit to a northern Iraqi city seen as a testing ground for whether Iraq’s sectarian leaders can ever reach reconciliation.

Ahmet Davutoglu visited the city of Kirkuk, where an estimated 850,000 Kurds, Turkomen and Arabs uneasily co-exist — and that Iraqi Kurds hope to annex into their autonomous region. Turkey, Iran and Syria have long feared that Kurdish rule of Kirkuk would encourage separatist sentiment within their Kurdish minorities.

Iraq’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its website that Davutoglu’s visit to Kirkuk was “not appropriate” and an “interference in the internal affairs of Iraq.” It warned that Turkey would “bear the consequences,” which would negatively affect relations between the two neighbors.

Turkey’s ties with Baghdad had already deteriorated after Turkey allowed Iraq’s fugitive vice president, Tariq al-Hashemi, to stay in Istanbul for medical reasons.

“It is not in the interest of Turkey or any other party to underestimate the national sovereignty” of Iraq, the statement said, adding that the visit was staged “without the knowledge and approval of the ministry.”

The Iraqi Foreign Ministry also chided the regional Kurdish administration for facilitating the visit without seeking the approval of Baghdad.


August 2nd, 2012, 6:25 pm


Syrialover said:


For those who bother to care about votes on comments, I’d say the current scene is probably reflecting reality.

But what’s frequently happened in the past (and which I pointed out at the time) was the mysterious appearance of instant blocks of 10 and 20 green thumbs-up votes for pro-regime commentators.

At the same time, anyone posting things criticizing Assad got sudden instant blocks of 10-20 red thumbs down votes.

The block voter spammers appear to be currently off duty, or have moved on to other tasks. But we can probably expect to see them back.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:36 pm


Syria no Kandahar said:

I will test your theory and see if it makes sense:
Baklava is sweet!

August 2nd, 2012, 6:46 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Anan’s resignation is huge news. Now it is just war with no diplomacy. A la guerre comme a la guerre.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:46 pm


Syria no Kandahar said:

Falafels are healthy.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:48 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Falafels are super healthy.
What about Amir in Tel Aviv meets Al Ar’ur angel?

August 2nd, 2012, 6:59 pm


Syrialover said:


Those links give a fantastic reality insight on who are Syria’s rebels.

It sure exposes the nonesense hysteria about al quaeds by excited drama queens, the misinformed and propagandists.

They insult the courage and sacrifice of those men we see here.

Ordinary decent Syrians who have made a decision that enough is enough and are prepared to fight for a future.

They deserve all the support they can get. Not the petty armchair squeals from those who dismiss the sincerity and sacrifices of these men.

Those people wouldn’t understand those heroes and what they are fighting for, and are not fit to clean their boots.

August 2nd, 2012, 6:59 pm


Tara said:


Thank you for #186. People who call the FSA terrorists should be ashamed. Those are ordinary, yet heroic, Syrian citizens who picked up arms to liberate us. That baby girl is so adorable. She is going to grow up a proud Syrian woman.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:08 pm


mjabali said:

I think the moderator is one of the commentators. Dr. Landis should not let this happen.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:13 pm


Ghufran said:

لندن (رويترز) – قالت مصادر في قطاع النقل البحري إن إيران أصبحت المشتري الرئيسي للنفط الخام من سوريا لتساعد نظام بشار الأسد في التغلب على العقوبات الغربية إذ أن ناقلات إيرانية عادت إلى سوريا للمرة الثالثة منذ ابريل نيسان.
ومع أن إيران تجد صعوبة في بيع نفطها الخام بسبب العقوبات إلا أن اثنتين من سفنها أخذتا نفطا سوريا في أواخر يوليو تموز بعد شراء شحنة أصغر في مطلع الشهر نفسه.
Update: Number of people killed in alyarmouk reached 20

August 2nd, 2012, 7:17 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

How many Amids do you have?

In the beginning, I remember, each defection of a sergeant, was a big story. Now it is an Amid a day. A torrent. Can you imagine the disarray and the mistrust among the junta of loyalists?
It is a matter of days now.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:27 pm


Ghufran said:

Very few people want to do moderation on SC for different reasons, I had to decline an offer for lack of time and interest, JL will be glad,as far as I know,to hear any grievances we have about the new moderator, I yet have to find a reason to complain.
A better fix is for this site to attract more knowledgeable and decent commentators who can enrich this site,the quality of this site did go down,no doubt about it,most of the heavy lifters have left and we now have to deal with kids and hateful posters who are here to scream and agitate not to inform and educate.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:28 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Tara 193,

Did you see a terrorist smiling? Terrorists do not smile. A person who smiles, isn’t a terrorist.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:29 pm


Ales said:

From Sana web page:
An armed terrorist group today fired mortars on al-Yarmouk camp in Damascus, at Zleikha neighborhood leading to the martyrdom of a number of citizens and injuring others.

The popular committee in al-Yarmouk camp said that the armed group’s shelling on the camp claimed the lives of martyrs Alaa Ghneim, Mahmoud Anitawi, Bahaa Mahmoud Ayoub, Rafee Ali Al-Refaee, Anas Talouzi, Ibrahim Talouzi, Yahyia Alian, Fathi Alian, Imad Kaddah, Abdullah Saleh, Mahmoud Kana and Mohammad Mushemish.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:31 pm


omen said:

194. MJABALI said: I think the moderator is one of the commentators. Dr. Landis should not let this happen.

mjabali for moderator!

hey, why isn’t my comment posting?


wb snk.

August 2nd, 2012, 7:49 pm


darryl said:

Mr Moderator/Owner,

Please remove my profile and posts from this website if that is all too possible. This will be my last post on this blog rest assured.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:00 pm


omen said:

125. AMJAD said: To be executed by the FSA, you’d have to have racked up a months long record of being a murderous thug

152. GHUFRAN said: I am glad there are still people who believe this garbage, it is a sign that no matter how slow or wrong one can be, there will be somebody else who is even slower and more wrong. that statement is not just wrong, it stinks, it basically labels every victim of assassination by the opposition as a thug or a murderer, this kind of filth is only worthy of a sewage pond not a respectable blog.


if you had evidence, ghufran, to refute it, you could cite it. instead, you resort to name calling. not very persuasive. we’ll wait for you to craft a better counter-argument.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:01 pm


ghufran said:

Abu Hamza, a Free Syrian Army colonel from the Jebel al-Zawiya district south of Idlib, told the Guardian that neither the FSA nor local communities could provide shelter or food for the thousands of displaced civilians being forced to sleep in fields or on the streets of towns and villages.
More than 250,000 refugees are believed to have fled Aleppo in the past fortnight, with large parts of the city of 2.5 million people now empty.
“We can’t feed them,” he said. “We need help. We don’t even have food for our own families, or for ourselves. We cannot survive for much longer under these conditions. We are talking a few weeks.”
comment: one might think that the brilliant leaders of the armed rebels would have thought of an exit strategy before sending thousand of troops to an area that is not too sympathetic to their ways even if it was sympathetic to their cause. Somebody on the regime’s side decided that there is no need to assault the city with heavy weapons and kill thousand of people,instead he instructed his men to wait even as rebels advance.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:07 pm


ghufran said:

Silou on Syria’s chemical weapons:
Adnan Silou, who fled to Turkey nearly two months ago, said he told his interrogators that the stockpiles of chemicals remained secured, but that regime leaders would likely deploy them if they were cornered. “I am sure about this,” he said. “They were a weapon of last resort and what will happen when that day comes.”
Silou, who retired from the Syrian military’s most controversial unit in late 2008, said he had been consulted by still serving officers throughout the past three years and was able to inspect an inventory of the weapons 10 days before fleeing.
“Every one of the stockpiles was intact, although it appeared that some had been moved,” he said. “Not even a centimetre had disappeared from the supplies as I knew them three years ago.”
Syria’s chemical weapons included Sarin, mustard and nerve gas, which could be deployed via artillery shells, rockets, or aircraft, Silou said. He said making them combat-ready was a difficult process, requiring components to be brought together from various locations across the country.
He identified the main chemical depots as being 10km east of Damascus and 10km south of Homs. “They were called units 417 and 418 and they are heavily protected,” he said. Chemicals have also been stored in the eastern desert city of Deir el-Zour.
“All of these things I told the Americans and the Turks when they took me to Ankara,” he said. “They wanted to know everything. I told them that only the president could give the order to weaponise them. It would have to be Assad.”
Comment: is there any Syrian on this board who does not believe that Silou is a traitor of his own country?
Being anti regime does not mean spilling your gut out to foreign intelligence officers, on a lighter note,it is also clear that this guy was marginal and not very bright.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:16 pm


omen said:

203. why blame the rebels when it’s the regime who has cut off access to food?

204. ghufran, you find reassurance in the fact that bashar maintains a viable chemical stockpile as a trump card? sick.

this is what treason looks like: loyalist who tacitly sanction chemical warfare and the gassing of fellow syrians as an acceptable last option.

is there no barbarity from this regime you won’t stomach?

August 2nd, 2012, 8:33 pm


ann said:

Regrets and fingerpointing as world powers swallow Annan’s resignation – 03 August, 2012

While most countries regretted the decision, some used the opportunity to take new jabs at the Syrian leadership.

­Washington said Annan’s resignation highlighted Russia’s and China’s failure to support action against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney added that Assad continued to “brutally murder” his own people, in spite of promises to follow Annan’s six-point plan.

The reaction out of London largely echoed what the world had already heard from America.

“We understand Annan’s frustration that, due to vetoes in the Security Council, the international community was unable to give him the support that he needed and requested,” British Foreign Secretary William Hague said in a statement.

Hague also noted that the Syrian government was failing to meet its obligations according to the Annan plan, instead continuing to repress its people. Nevertheless, Hague commended Annan’s efforts and stressed that the best chance of bringing about a peaceful solution to the crisis would be to stick to outgoing the envoy’s plan, as well as the Geneva communiqué adopted in June.

However, Prime Minister David Cameron signaled what could be a new, harsher period in the West’s treatment of the Assad regime.

The Annan plan “hasn’t worked because we have got this appalling bloodshed. I think what we need to do is actually ramp things up,” he told Sky News.


“Kofi Annan is an honorable man and a brilliant diplomat, so I regret this very much,” Putin said. “But I hope that the international community will continue the efforts to end violence.”

Moscow was happy to learn, though, that the UN and Arab League are looking for a successor to continue the peace mission, remarked Russian envoy to the UN Vitaly Churkin.

“We understand that it’s his decision,” Churkin told reporters. “We have very strongly supported Kofi Annan’s efforts. He has another month to go, and I hope this month will be used as effectively as possible under these very difficult circumstances.”

Syria voiced regret over Annan’s resignation, reaffirming its support of the principles he laid out.

“Syria still believes the only way out of the crisis is a national dialogue and a peace resolution, not a foreign intervention,” the Syrian Foreign Ministry said, adding that Damascus would continue its pursuit of terrorism and its bid to ensure security in the country.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon commended Annan’s efforts to put an end to the Syrian conflict.

“Kofi Annan deserves our profound admiration for the selfless way in which he has put his formidable skills and prestige to this most difficult and potentially thankless of assignments,” Ban noted in a statement. “I will continue to draw on his wisdom and counsel, and on the work of the Office of the Joint Special Envoy.”


August 2nd, 2012, 8:35 pm


Amjad said:

“ne might think that the brilliant leaders of the armed rebels would have thought of an exit strategy before sending thousand of troops to an area that is not too sympathetic to their ways even if it was sympathetic to their cause”

*facepalm* The FSA has done more to bring medical aid, food supplies and help evacuate refugees across the borders than the Syrian regime ever has done. I wish these judgmental self-important types would take a minute to consider what they sound like.

One might think that a government that claims to be protecting the country from foreign plots would set up refugee camps and send officials to the affected areas.

One might think that the hospitals would be full of demonstrators caught in the “crossfire” as the regime claims.

One might think that the prethident and his wife would at least attend one military funeral.

One might think that people could indulge in some independent thinking. But then one would be disappointed.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:39 pm


Amjad said:

#200 Not really. The whole premise of the article has been lifted from the latest ICG report. It states that the regime has degenerated to such an extent that it is now little more than a militia. Militias don’t need borders, or international legitimacy, or to worry themselves about providing services to war torn areas, or pay the salaries of civil servants. So it is impervious to sanctions and diplomatic isolation, in the same way that the Black Knight in Monty Python couldn’t feel any wounds in his legs or arms after they were cut off.

It’s like saying that Nazi Germany by April 1945 was impervious to strategic bombing, as by then there was nothing left to bomb. Yes, the regime is now impervious to any tool that the International community has limited itself to thus far; sanctions, diplomatic isolation. An insect has much simpler needs to exist than a mammal. It means that the way is open for more forceful methods. In its weakened state, it is doubtful the regime can long stand a well equipped and trained foe.

Over in Israel, young people are planing business exits for their start ups. While in Syria, young people are struggling to get a basic Internet connection. Pathetic.

August 2nd, 2012, 8:49 pm



The delinquent criminal regime of goons, the assad regime of occupation, and its gangs of thuggish killers are the only terrorists in Syria


Jordanian FM confirms last night’s 6-hour long battle between the Jordanian Army and the mobsters of the criminal regime. Casualties were reported,

August 2nd, 2012, 8:54 pm


Aldendeshe said:

he instructed his men to wait even as rebels advance.

They know the rebels are on very tight leach, militarily, financially and logistically. They know when they desperate and hungry, they will rob, kill and turns the citizens against them, turn them from liberators to thugs by waiting. There is no urgency as Damascus to put it down.

لالقيادة سورية الحرة من عملاء الاستعمار الصهيوني الامبريالي الغربي
سورية الحرة هي سورية النزيهة

المالح وابنه سرقا مبلغ 33 مليون دولار من أموال “الثورة” قبل أن تجمدها الألمانية بعد قصة ابنه مع “عاهرة”

الله يوفقك وينصركم الله يعظّم وينصر المسلمين المجاهدين لتنسى فلسطين الأسلامية والقدس نحن معكم بكل نصرة جهاد حتى تحرير مكة المكرمة مسقط واندالوسيا باكو وكازاخستان انشآ الله

August 2nd, 2012, 8:58 pm


Ghufran said:

وصف الدكتور محمد حبش عمليات إعدام زينو بري والشيخ عبد اللطيف الشامي واختطاف الشيخ محمود حسون في حلب بالعمل المحرّم.
ولفت الدكتور حبش على صفحته الشخصية على “فيبسوك” إلى أن إعدام الأسير لا يجوز في الشرع ولا الدين، وأنه لا يحل لأحد أن يقتل أحدا إلا بمحاكمة ودفاع وقانون وقضاء.
وأشار حبش إلى أنه يدين هذه العمليات بقدر ما أدان سابقا جرائم النظام، حسبما ذكر.
وأبدى العضو السابق في مجلس الشعب السوري تخوفه من أن يسلك الثوار في سوريا نفس السلوك الذي قال إن المخابرات تتبعه في الاعتقال بلا سبب والتعذيب بلا سبب وربما الإعدام بلا سبب.
واستشهد العلامة السوري بقوله تعالى “ويطعمون الطعام على حبه مسكينا ويتيما وأسيرا”.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:04 pm


Ghufran said:

قال غورسيل تكين النائب عن حزب الشعب الجمهوري المعارض في تركيا إن وزير الخارجية التركي أحمد داود أوغلو سيقال من منصبه قريباً. وأضاف تكين “عن نية لتعيين نامق كورهان السفير التركي السابق لدى شمال قبرص في مكانه”. ولفت تكين في مقابلة مع محطة “سي ان ان تورك” الاربعاء إلى أن داود أوغلو لم يوقع حزب العدالة والتنمية ورئيس الوزراء التركي رجب طيب أردوغان في المشاكل فقط ولكنه أوقع تركيا كلها في المشاكل.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:11 pm


Tara said:

Graphic footage coming out from the massacre Bashar committed against the Yarmuk Refugee Camp. Trail of bodies again. Isn’t time yet for divine intervention?

August 2nd, 2012, 9:13 pm


bronco said:

As predicted, whether the rebels are able to secure a zone a la Benghazi in Aleppo or they are totally crushed, the need for a political transitional government is badly needed.
That’s the new buzz word all over the countries concerned by the situation in Syria.

After 15 months of gestation, the opposition has been able to deliver a child, the armed opposition, that has been immediately fed and pampered by some countries eager to topple a man who has treated them of half-men or have stood on their way to tame the Resistance to Israel

The trouble is that these countries have no tradition of democracy and power sharing as they are authoritarian family managed countries, therefore, despite their money and maybe because of their money, they have had a negative influence on the embryo.

So the second child, the unified political arm of the opposition, remained immature and crippled with a short life span.

Without such entity it is impossible for the West to manage the situation without involving themselves deeper as they did in Iraq, that means: The heavy burden of “nation building”. Most western countries refuse vehemently a costly remake of Iraq..
So today, despite the hopes and plans, the West countries are cornered and will remain cornered until they find urgently an artificial insemination that may give birth to a ‘transitional’ government. The danger is that it may take 15 more months and may turn out to be a monster.

On the other hand, if the Syrian government is able to secure Aleppo, it would just have to wait for the West to call for a dialog.
Whether the rebels win or not, they will be hampered by the absence of a political umbrella and may end up fighting against each other for power as they have different agendas and are manipulated by different ideological currents, often incompatible.

Unless the West is able to quickly find an acceptable leadership among the opposition factions, I think that time is playing in favor of the Syrian government.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:19 pm


Aldendeshe said:

Can you please send the footage when it is photoshopped to Zionist owned outfit like CNN and Fox, they will love it, they have no req. for authenticity. Be another Michael Hezarkhani will ya. Make sure the rockets shown are labled “Syrian Scuds” in English, for maxium impact on bedouins gulping coke by the gallons watching it.

لالقيادة سورية الحرة من عملاء الاستعمار الصهيوني الامبريالي الغربي
سورية الحرة هي سورية النزيهة

المالح وابنه سرقا مبلغ 33 مليون دولار من أموال “الثورة” قبل أن تجمدها الألمانية بعد قصة ابنه مع “عاهرة”

الله يوفقك وينصركم الله يعظّم وينصر المسلمين المجاهدين لتنسى فلسطين الأسلامية والقدس نحن معكم بكل نصرة جهاد حتى تحرير مكة المكرمة مسقط واندالوسيا باكو وكازاخستان انشآ الله

August 2nd, 2012, 9:27 pm


ann said:

On Syria, Saudis Belatedly Brief African Group, On 120 Votes, Bill Clinton Buzz

By Matthew Russell Lee, EXCLUSIVE

UNITED NATIONS, August 2 — Late Thursday on the eve of the Friday morning General Assembly vote on Saudi Arabia’s resolution about Syria, the Saudi Permanent Representative belatedly met with the African Group on 47th Street.

Inner City Press, which in three articles this week questioned why the Saudis met with all regional groups except Africa, heard about the meeting and went to stake it out, the only media in front. The Saudi Permanent Representative smiled as he left, saying “you are everywhere.”

African diplomats said “he had to come” and “he came just to say he had.” One let it be known that the UK has said there are already 120 votes for the watered down Saudi resolution.

But there are still disputes, for example whether the resolution should “welcome” decisions of the Arab League, or merely “note” them. This is another right about “regime change” and sanctions, even with those words technically out of the text.

Another proponent of the amended resolution told Inner City Press he expects 125 votes in votes, while having projected only 70 if it had not been amended.

The draft, which Inner City Press obtained from a well placed member state after 5 pm on August 1, is set for voting August 3 at 11 am (not 10 am as French Ambassador Gerard Araud said on camera midday Thursday, just to clear that up). Inner City Press is putting the draft online here.

Buzzy footnore: Speculation of who might replace Kofi Annan is rife, one source telling Inner City Press that Bill Clinton, who essentially admitted the UN brought cholera to Haiti, is in the mix.


August 2nd, 2012, 9:30 pm


Ghufran said:

الكلام لالك يا كنه اسمعي يا جاره
The first post-transitional Egyptian cabinet was officially sworn in Thursday amid criticism it contained too many old regime figures and further underlined the power the military still wields in post-revolution Egypt.
The new cabinet comprises a range of technocrats, mainly promoted from within the ranks. The Muslim Brotherhood’s political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), took five portfolios: information, housing, higher education, youth and manpower. There are two women in the new cabinet, including the only Coptic Christian minister, Nadia Zachary, who will head the ministry for scientific research.
In a nod to the other major power in the country, the head of the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (Scaf), Hussein Tantawi, remained in his post as minister of defence, highlighting once again the balance of power between Scaf and the Brotherhood in post-revolution Egypt.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:33 pm


Ghufran said:

A letter to the Guardian:

• If a few hundred armed rebels were lodged in south London, wouldn’t we expect our government to use every means to destroy them? Would we blame the rebels or the government for collateral damage? What hypocrisy is it to say the Assad government should just give up? Why do we cheerlead religious extremists? Do we want another Sunni tyranny like Saudi? Are we happy to create a sectarian conflict? Have we forgotten Afghanistan? Iraq? Is it all designed to help the coming war against Iran? Two things seem clear: imperialism in the Middle East is very much alive and kicking and we’re not being told the full truth.
Paul Baker

August 2nd, 2012, 9:40 pm


ann said:

On Syria, Araud Disses Churkin’s “Conspiracy Theory,” Ladsous Floats Away

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, August 2 — When the Syria meeting of the UN Security Council broke up late Thursday afternoon, it was Russian Permanent Representative Vitaly Churkin who made it first to the UN TV microphone.

He said that inside the meeting, the Western countries had not explained to his satisfaction why they want the UN observer mission to end on August 19.

During the meeting, another Security Council member told Inner City Press it would be a matter of “saving face,” after the (mostly) UK drafted July 20 resolution used the term “final” extension.

Inner City Press asked Churkin if it would be possible to maintain after August 19 a UN presence in Syria, for example with personnel of the UN Department of Safety and Security, without passing a new resolution. Churkin said no, then said Russia would be willing to “re-name” the mission.

French Permanent Representative Gerard Araud, August’s Council president, began by chiding Churkin for speaking first. Inner City Press asked him about the EU’s Kristalina Georgieva’s statement that humanitarian aid delivery in Syria is helped by the UNSMIS mission, even now.

This, Araud did not answer. Rather, he focused with rhetorical flourish on Inner City Press’ second question, about Churkin’s surprise that Kofi Annan’s deputy Jean Marie Guehenno had been called by to Paris for a job with the French government.

Araud said this was a “conspiracy theory,” and that Churkin had spend too long on the Middle East. He emphasized that it was the new, Francois Hollande, government which offered Guehenno the post. But it is only to write a white paper.

To some it seems that if the Annan mission were going better, at least from France’s point of view, Guehenno might not have been “called home.”

When he was asked how Russia inside the meeting had argued for UNSMIS to stay in Syria, Araud took another pot-shot, saying, you should ask Churkin and Ja’afari, Syria’s Ambassador. There were smiles in Araud’s entourage, and in truth it was more entertaining that most Council president’s stakeouts. Will Churkin or Ja’afari fire back?

Next up was Guehenno’s successor, with fellow Frenchman Alain Le Roy in the middle, as head of UN Peacekeeping: Herve Ladsous. His spokeswoman — lead spokesman Kieran Dwyer is said to be away on business travel — announced from the beginning Ladsous would take only two or three questions, fewer than Churkin or Araud.

Even so, Ladsous barely answered, and as more detailed questions began — like why he took half of UNSMIS out despite what the EU’s Georgieva said — Ladsous floated away from the microphone, taking no Press questions (as he vowed, not liking or being able to handle critical coverage), saying only “We are working.”

Working on what? Dismantling the UN Mission and its credibility?


August 2nd, 2012, 9:46 pm


Tara said:


Whether the rebels win or not, they will be hampered by the absence of a political umbrella and may end up fighting against each other for power..”

I agree. The political opposition carries a historical responsibility of unifying to move forward. Although, I said I would give my vote to Haytham al Maleh..I don’t think his unilateral declaration of being “self -appointed” is helping, to the opposite, it is creating more division.

August 2nd, 2012, 9:53 pm


ann said:

Aerial bombardment kills 16 rebels in southern Syria | Aug 3, 2012

AMMAN: Syrian army helicopter bombardment killed 16 rebels from the same family in the southern Hauran Plain, a strategic region that links Damascus with Jordan, where fighting has intensified in the past several days, opposition sources said on Friday.

The loss on the rebel side came after fighters attacked an army roadblock on Thursday near the town of Busra al-Harir and were pursued from the air, the sources said, adding that army artillery also started shelling the town.

“The 175th Regiment is now shelling Busra al-Harir from Izru,” an opposition activist in the region said, referring to a Syrian army base near the main highway linking Damascus to the border city of Deraa, birthplace of the 17-month revolt against the rule of President Bashar al-Assad.


August 2nd, 2012, 9:59 pm


syria haters said:

I can’t wait for two things in my lifetime. After, these terrorists take over Syria, I pray to god they turn their guns north, southeast, n southwest. That’s right turkey, ksa, isreal. Or better yet, I can’t wait for all that oil to run out from underneath your dirty sandals, you head choppin, blood thirsty, wahabi murderers. Just wait n see…..all the billions spent American weapons from Egypt, n all the gulf state customers, will probably turn on isreal one day. The real losers will be ksa n Israel. So keep supporting those terrorists.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:01 pm


irritated said:

172. ghufran

It looks like the Christians, the Circassians, the Armenians and even the Druzes are not changing they mind, despite the calls from the zaim Jumblatt.

Now that they lost the Kurds to the regime, the opposition is trying to stir the Palestinians by ‘creating’ massacres. I hope the Palestinians won’t be fooled, keep cool and remain neutral.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:02 pm


Ghufran said:

أقرّ رئيس المجلس الوطني السوري السابق برهان غليون بوجود مسلّحين أجانب يقاتلونَ في صفوفِ المعارضةِ في سورية. وقال غليون في مقابلة مع إحدى القنوات الفرنسية “إن هؤلاء هم الخطرون ولكنهم قلّة” مضيفاً “إن السوريين لا يندمجون في القاعدة قطعاً ولا يؤمنون بأفكارها”.
ورأى المعارض السوري أنَ “معركة حلب ستحسم نهاية هذا الشهر أو خلالَ أسابيع على أبعد تقدير في حال عجز النظام السوري عن إرسال قوات إضافية إلى المدينة” قائلاً “بالنظر إلى الظروف الراهنة حلب ستتحرر”.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:10 pm


omen said:

Syrian Leader’s Weapons Under Strain

many of the Syrian government’s most powerful weapons, including helicopter gunships, fighter jets and tanks, are looking less potent and in some cases like a liability for the military of President Bashar al-Assad.


Close observers of his military say Syria is having trouble keeping its sophisticated and maintenance-intensive weapons functioning.


Analysts said Syria’s fleet of Mi-25 Hind-D attack helicopters, which numbered 36 at the start of the conflict, is insufficient to hold back rebels as the number of fronts, from Aleppo and Idlib in the north to the suburbs of Damascus in the south and Hama and Homs in the center of the country, continues to proliferate.

Maintenance technicians are struggling to keep the machines aloft in an intense campaign and in the searing heat and sand associated with summer desert war. Estimates are that only half his fleet can be used at a given time, with some helicopters cannibalized for spare parts and Mr. Assad dependent on supplies from Russia.


One video, which analysts said was credible, showed a fighting group in Rastan with what appeared to be two-thirds of an SA-7 shoulder-fired, heat-seeking missile system.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:21 pm


bronco said:

#220 Tara

They cannot get to a consensus on a person, that’s the drama of the opposition and the advantage of the Syrian government who despite sanctions, insults, criticism, threats has remained cohesive and united, politically and militarily behind their leader.

While the whole present political system of the Baath party in Syria is made on compromises and acceptance of the differences of religions and ethnicity, the political system of Qatar and KSA is rigid, sectarian, closed and uncompromising. The non-collaborative value has propagated within the opposition that these countries created and influenced.
This is why the opposition will not be able to agree on anybody unless it is imposed on them. Yet, pumped by their ego, their greed and the illusion that the West is with them, they are now resisting Qatar and KSA candidate, Manaf Tlass and the local Syrian opposition candidate Haytham Al Maleh.
They look for a candidate within the FSA, but Ryad Al Assaad is detested and the others have little weight.
As you see they have a serious problem to solve and time is running out, not for the regime anymore, but for the opposition to make sense of all these deaths.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:21 pm


zoo said:

Ghaliun hopes and see himself already in Aleppo’s presidential palace. Who is “WE”?

“If Aleppo falls, then automatically we are going to establish headquarters at the presidential palace,” said Burhan Ghalioun, a member of the opposition Syrian National Council, late Wednesday in Paris. “”There will be nothing more that will stand in the way of the Free Syrian Army. Hama, Homs to the outskirts of Damascus have in large part been liberated.”

August 2nd, 2012, 10:37 pm


zoo said:

USA: No arms for the rebels. We love Annan’s plan for a peaceful transition even if Annan left desperate.

US stands firm against arming Syrian rebels

“Our position has not changed: We provide non-lethal assistance to the opposition,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said aboard Air Force One.

“We don’t believe that adding to the number of weapons in Syria is what’s needed to help bring about a peaceful transition.”

But the United States maintained that Annan’s six-point plan was “a framework we continue to support and to go forward with in the context of our wider strategy.”

August 2nd, 2012, 10:40 pm


Norman said:

The winner in Syria is going to be the one that can endure.

August 2nd, 2012, 10:48 pm


omen said:


another dispatch from austin tice:

Rebels give inside account of Damascus fighting, saying holding neighborhoods was never plan

DAMASCUS, Syria — Rebel fighters who planned and participated in intense fighting in the Syrian capital two weeks ago say they never intended to capture and hold portions of the city. They view the skirmishing, widely seen as a victory for the government, as just the opposite.

“It was an excellent victory,” said Abu Abdullah, a commander in the unit that exercises rebel tactical control over the western half of Damascus. “We accomplished our objectives, gained experience, and had very low casualties. The Free Army is stronger as a result, and the regime is weaker.”

August 2nd, 2012, 10:51 pm


Ghufran said:

أعلن العميد نصر مصطفى، نائب رئيس فرع المخابرات الجوية في محافظة دير الزور، انشقاقه عن النظام وانضمامه إلى الجيش السوري الحر بسبب ما وصفها بالجرائم التي ترتكب بحق الشعب السوري.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:25 pm


zoo said:

News Analysis: Syrian crisis sees no foreseeable solution in near future

DAMASCUS, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) — The Syrian crisis that has been dragging on for 17 months is unexpected to draw to an end soon, as speculations are high that it would go on for months and even years, no matter whether the regime is overthrown or not.

Observers have sounded the alarm that any settlement to the crisis doesn’t necessarily hinge on toppling the regime, given the fact that the country is veering towards an internal conflict and Syrian opposition parties are going through internal fragmentation.

Some world powers and regional powerhouses frequently said that the collapse of the Syrian regime is inevitable and is around the corner, and they have even started talking about post-President Bashar Assad era, without hiding their fears of the expansion of fundamentalists in the area.




Analysts say that chances for a political settlement in Syria are “nil” after 17 months of regional and international attempts..


The Syrian opposition is obviously having difficulty agreeing on a common vision. What looked like minor differences have turned out to be great points of contention.
For those reasons, observers have drawn a bleak vision for the future of Syria.

August 2nd, 2012, 11:31 pm


mjabali said:


It is very obvious that something is going on on this blog since this new moderator came along.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:12 am


Visitor said:

Mr. Gerard Araud, French permenant rep. At the UNSC and it’s current President, indicated that the resignation of Mr. Annan is insignificant. Among other things, he mentioned that the mission members spend 90 percent of their time in the hotels rendering their presence meaningless. He also mentioned that it is unlikely the UNSC will agree on an extension of the mission when it officially expires end of August. Discussions, he said, will be limited only to establishing security zones to provide relief to refugees. He blamed Russia for the deadlock and made scathing criticism of its maneuvering tactics at the UNSC.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:18 am


Son of Damascus said:


“Even some superpowers, like Russia, are believed to be trying to have a solid foothold equal to that of the United States in the area via their support to Syria.”

This is wishful thinking, the Russian support towards the Assadi regime overwhelmingly exceeds the support provided by the US to the opposition. How many gunships/tanks/artillery/APC/Fixed wing planes has the US provided VS what the Russians have?

Btw what the hell does [sic] SPLITED mean?

Guess Xinhua is allergic to checking not only the facts, but spell check as well.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:24 am


Son of Damascus said:


Has there been a moderator that you did not have a problem with?

August 3rd, 2012, 12:27 am


mjabali said:

Son of Damascus:

Sorry son of Damascus but let me correct you:

Alawis are from two major groups even if they belong to many different tribes.

Second: educated Alawis (from rich and poor families) were most of the time anti Assads. Many spent years in prison. Hafez, as you said discriminated against those because they did not like him from the start.

Among those around Hafez and Bassar al-Assad it is Mohammad Nasif who is from a very big Alawi family. He is from the family of Ismail al-Hawash, who had a mini state within the Ottoman empire in the 19th C.

Some like Duba and Haydar may have came from clergy family but before 1970 no one have heard of them. They are from the same group as al-Assad.

the Assads, kept the Alawis from the group different than theirs’ out of the high posts. They used the poor uneducated alawis as their private soldiers.

As for moderators: They have problems with me more than I have problems with them. I like this blog to be without moderation.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:33 am


Observer said:

Rumors are running that one of the killed in the Damascus bombing was Bandar as he was meeting the others. I know Debka claims he was killed by an Iranian unit but Debka in my opinion has the same reputation as SANA when it comes to reliability; so I dismiss this source out of hand.

Bandar has not been seen; Fredo has not been seen either. Is there a reason for these vanishing acts? Does anyone here have an inkling about these?
Is it true that the grave of Hafez was bombed?

Did anyone see the funeral of Asef in Tartous?
It is clear that Iran and Russia are embarrassed by Annan resigning and their outlets Press TV and RT are mention this in passing. They know that they are to blame for its ineffectiveness. Anyway, the revolution has moved from slogans to rocks to RPG’s and more on the way.

It boggles my mind in what kind of universe the regime is in.

Norman thinks it is an endurance test; well the analogy is wrong for in this case the regime is eating itself.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:35 am


Aldendeshe said:

“Kofi Annan is an honorable man and a brilliant diplomat, so I regret this very much,” Putin said

Sure, but he signed the death warrant of 3 million moslems, when he knew it is all fabricated lies presented by Powell and CNN/Fox.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:45 am


Observer said:

According to Haitham Al Maleh for the record MAJBALI Mohamad Nasif used drug addicts to torture prisoners and he met with Hafez every day at 4 am to give reports about the security situation and he was very effective in suppressing the MB revolt in the 80’s

I agree with Majbali that all sects and ethnic groups are victims of the dictatorship. I also think that this clique has even cornered the Alawi community into thinking that a Rwanda fate awaits them if the regime falls. In this they show truly unimaginable cruelty and barbarism.

However, it is clear that the number of non Alawi members that are supportive of the regime is dwindling fast and that even the profiteers are now sitting on the fence and the majority of those that can leave have left and those behind are just sitting tight.

It is also clear that the regime relied on the sectarian card for a very long time and that the Alawi community passively or actively benefited from this sectarian thinking driven by old grievances.

Majbali please tell us what is the core elements of Alawi belief and are there secret tenants and what differences are there with Shia and why are they called Alawi?

A civil society rises the citizenship above these differences. The differences acquire significance and sects sprout and flourish when the central state is weak and the ideological background of the society fails to provide answers and solutions.

Sunni islam is sick and its politicizing a danger to its spirituality. I see these days the deification of the Prophet which is blasphemy to me and the Zionization of Islam by imparting a “chosen” mentality for its adherents. Both are abhorrent and disgusting but in fairness I see a deep sectarian fanaticism in our brothers the Shia that is anathema to everything that Ali Ibn Abi Taleb stood for. The recent events have unmasked this streak in some.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:49 am


Juergen said:

Joschka Fischer, ex foreign minister under Schröder has written this article about the afterrmath of the Assad regime. He was very influental on Germanys stand against the war in Iraq. His statement to Colin Powell, I am not convinced is quite famous.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:50 am


sf94123 said:

Post # 235: MJABALI, you are 100% right! Had the same feeling as I was reading this morning.

August 3rd, 2012, 1:31 am


mjabali said:


Let me focus on one important question you asked instead of trying to answer to the various points in your post.

You said: “Mjabali please tell us what is the core element of Alawi belief and are there core secret tenants and what differences are there with Shia and why are they called Alawi?”

To answer this I need days of writings and footnoting, but I will try and make it brief.

1- The core element of Alawi belief is mixture of religions and beliefs mixed with Islam through an interpretation of al-Quran that does not match any other.

Some of these elements are pre Islamic and related to the philosophy of Plotinus and his school of Neoplatonism.

Sufi masters (Naqshbandi, Janbalani..etc) played a major role into shaping this creed.

As for al-Quran they think everything in it has two meanings: the one on the surface al-Zaher, and what is inside of the words: al-Batin, hence came the word Batiniyah.
Alawism is a product of an age where philosophy was brought in to interpret Islam.

2- The secret tenants you asked about mr. Observer are probably the way the Alawis look at Omar, Othman, Abu Bakr and Mu’awiyah. The Alawis started hiding their way of looking at Islam because of persecution.

3- As for the difference between the Alawis and the Shia: They both follow the teachings of Ja’far al-Sadeq as their juriprudincical reference. But the Alawis do not look at the descendants of Prophet Mohammad the way the Shia do look at those who claim that line. The Alawis are more independent than the Shia, who are always under a huge group (al-Asyad) that claim to be related the prophet Mohammad and therefore should rule. They do not practice the self beating known to Shia. The Shia base most of their practices on al-Quran, while Alawis still recite “prayers” written by al-Khasibi and his students.

4- They are called Alawis because they consider Ali ibn Abi Taleb a man with special supernatural qualities.

August 3rd, 2012, 1:42 am


mjabali said:


I just wrote you a response to your question about the Alawis’ core ideas…It is in the spam prison…if it did not appear I will try and write it again in the morning…

August 3rd, 2012, 1:44 am


omen said:

ammar abdulhamid

Insider Information

While many expect the General Assembly to pass a resolution calling on Assad to step down, friends at the UN tell me that the paragraph calling on Assad to step down was actually removed following pressures from India, South Africa and Brazil, among others.

The recent decision by the U.S. Treasury Department to allow for the Syrian Support Group to gather funds on behalf of the Free Syrian Army falls strictly under the nonlethal assistance policy, so no weapons can be purchased using any funds collected by the Group.

The decision will not have much of an impact when it comes to reality on the ground for two more reasons. First, many Syrian-American are already sending funds to the FSA even without such approval, and second, Syrian-American donations will remain a drop in the bucket in comparison to what can be collected from Gulf supporters. Saudi donors just collected $100 million meant to support the Syrian rebels, following a five-day fundraising marathon.

It should be noted in this connection that reports claiming that rebels got their hands on MANPADS from external sources, have been vehemently refuted by rebel leaders on the ground.

The Obama Administration is still MIA in Syria, and although some pundits applaud that, but they seem to have a different endgame in sight where a protracted civil war in Syria and its eventual implosion may not be such a terrible development, the human cost notwithstanding.

August 3rd, 2012, 1:48 am


Uzair8 said:

New Syrian defense minister, symbol of regime’s brutal war
Thursday, 02 August 2012

When Sunni officer Fahed al-Freij was promoted to replace Syria’s defense minister, slain in a bomb attack two weeks ago, few people paid much attention and rebels dismissed him as inconsequential.


Rebels seems to have changed their opinion of Freij.

“We did not know who he was at first. We have checked now. He is a Bedouin from Hama, commander of the operations (to crush opposition in) Deraa and Homs during the revolution,” said a rebel commander in Damascus.


But the rebels are now better equipped and determined to fight back. A group of gunmen posted a Youtube video after his appointment saying that his tribe disavow him and that he will be their target.

“We inform him that he will be our coming target..we tell him that victory is coming. God is Greatest.”

August 3rd, 2012, 1:55 am


Aldendeshe said:

To the stupid kid that is cheating the thumbing up/down. We are counting the visitors on our stat generator and can see when you dumb ass add a block of 10 or 4 and no new visitor visited the site. Childish poorley trained Langley kid.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:30 am


Uzair8 said:

Syria banks face deposit challenge as civil war expands
Thu Aug 2, 2012

(Reuters) – Now that rebels have carried Syria’s civil war from remote villages to the capital and the commercial hub, a banking system that survived 16 months of unrest will face its biggest test.

In most of the country, banks have been managing to stay open, thanks to strenuous efforts by their managers and the needs of desperate customers who continue to deposit money because they can find no safer place.

But the spread of major fighting to Damascus last month, and then to Aleppo, Syria’s biggest city and top commercial centre, marks a new, more destructive period for the economy, putting banks under fresh pressure.

Read more:

August 3rd, 2012, 2:35 am


Juergen said:

Süddeutsche Zeitung has interviewed Ali Heydar, the regimes minister for “reconciliation”

Syria’s Minister for National Reconciliation “The only way out is the political dialogue”
Haidar Ali’s minister for reconciliation – in a country of war. Neither the rebels nor the Syrian regime can win the conflict militarily, he says in the bedroom conversation. Haidar is based on dialogue and support hotlines. And it sounds unrealistic.

“I am minister of the government, but also remain a member of the opposition and fight for the rights of all Syrians.”

Haidar did not mention the number of prisoners of SZ explicitly: “No State shall publish that number.” He worked in many cases, to the release of individual prisoners: his ministry had “set up a hotline, they will demand brisk.” He sat down to ensure that the states be tolerable in the prisons, but added: “A prison is not a five star hotel.”

August 3rd, 2012, 2:52 am


Juergen said:

Robert Fisk: For the minorities, even neutrality is unsafe

“Neither wish to “collaborate” with Bashar al-Assad’s regime. But remaining neutral, you end up with no friends at all. You didn’t have to sell a loaf of bread to a Nazi in occupied France to be a collaborator. But you were, to use an old German expression, “helping to give the wheel a shove”. No, Bashar al-Assad is not Hitler, but God spare the Palestinians and the Christians of Syria during these terrible times.”

August 3rd, 2012, 2:58 am


Uzair8 said:

George Galloway: In Syria al-Qaeda is working with the Americans

31 July 2012

George Galloway MP and author Jonathan Steele, former foreign editor of The Guardian, discuss the irony of al-Qaeda — supposedly America’s motivation for the ‘war on terror’ and for the Afghanistan war — now being on the same side as the United States in Syria. Both Galloway and Steele oppose all foreign intervention in Syria, whether by al-Qaeda or by the US and its allies.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:53 am


Expatriate said:

Mr Moderator !

Please remove all my posts from this website if it is possible.

August 3rd, 2012, 4:00 am


Uzair8 said:

Seems like some users are finally jumping from the sinking ship….

August 3rd, 2012, 4:31 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

More and more free brigades, less and less junta Amids and Akids.

BTW why is it called Free Syrian Army, when on the ground they call themselves \”Army of Freedom\”?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:37 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:


Are you defecting?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:38 am


Mina said:

227 on the technical capacities is a very interesting post. It explains what this rehearsal is all about.

August 3rd, 2012, 5:09 am


Albo said:

I have seen many Israelis on internet rejoicing about this war, saying they support both sides and hope for a maximum of casualties. And why wouldn’t they?

I’m not sure if Amir or AIG believe one word of what they type. Who knows may be they also post on other forums videos of rebels gettng killed.

August 3rd, 2012, 5:41 am


Alan said:

Al-Qaeda bombers plotting Europe strikes arrested in Spain – officials

August 3rd, 2012, 6:12 am


irritated said:

Spamming the thumbs?

Either this blog has been heavily invaded by pro-chaos supporters, or many commenters defected, or a pro-chaos is playing with the thumbs to give that impression as part of a spamming propaganda.
In my personal view, I think the system is been manipulated by the pro-chaos.

As these thumbs can’t be easily ignored and play a psychological role in indicating the general mood of the blog, unless the moderator is not able to control their manipulation, I recommend they be suppressed.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:34 am


zoo said:

No more Annan’s peace plan? Syria is open to the warriors

Russia to send warships to Syria: reports

MOSCOW – Agence France- Presse

Three Russian amphibious assault ships carrying hundreds of armed navy personnel will briefly dock in a Moscow-leased Syrian port in the coming days, Russian news agencies reported on Friday.

The warships are currently conducting planned exercises in the Mediterranean Sea and will make a port call in Tartus to pick up fresh food and water supplies, the news agencies quoted an unnamed defence source as saying.

“Our ships will enter Tartus to replenish their material supplies,” a General Staff source was quoted as saying by the ITAR-TASS news agency.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:38 am


zoo said:

Breaking the Arab News- Foreign Policy
Egypt made al Jazeera — and Syria’s destroying it.

Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya are not unique in compromising their journalistic standards in Syria. Western media organizations such as the Guardian were fooled by an author claiming to be a gay girl in Damascus — and who turned out to be an American man living in Scotland. The BBC World News editor also criticized the sensationalism of initial reports of a massacre in the town of Houla, writing, “it’s more important than ever that we report what we don’t know, not merely what we do.”

But the real loss here is for Al Jazeera, a channel that was followed by tens of millions of Arab viewers last year at the height of the Arab uprisings and is today a shadow of its former self. After I wrote about the station’s bias in favor of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood last month, more than a dozen of the channel’s employees confirmed the fact to me in emails.
Fortunately, criticism of Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya has increased along with its biased coverage. Fadi Salem, a Dubai-based Syrian researcher specializing in media, accused both channels of “pay[ing] handsome amounts of money to anonymous callers with information regarding Syria” and recycling YouTube videos as if they were from different parts of the country. “Many opposition figures [who are inside Syria] but do not see eye to eye with Saudi or Qatari foreign policy on Syria are ‘banned’ on both channels,” Salem told me.

A large segment of Al Jazeera’s and Al Arabiya’s audiences, appalled by the Syrian regime’s brutality, no doubt genuinely believes that this is strictly a battle of good versus evil. For the Saudi and Qatari governments, however, Syria’s fate directly affects their political future — they want to see the fall of the regime for either personal or strategic reasons.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:49 am


irritated said:

Saudi Arabia won a Guiness record at the Olympics…

Saudi woman’s historic bow over in 82 seconds
By Chesterman | AFP – 1 hr 19 mins ago

Judoka Wojdan Shaherkani, the first Saudi Arabian woman to compete at the Olympics, sobbed as she admitted to being overwhelmed by her historic debut which lasted just 82 seconds on Friday.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:06 am


Son of Damascus said:


Mod can’t do anything regarding the thumbs, can’t even see who is doing the thumbing (unless a commentator is stupid enough to give themselves a thumbs up while their comment is awaiting moderation).

-If someone is using a proxy server such as Hotspot they can use up to 6 unique IP’s, with an extra click from the cellphone. (So 8 thumbs in total including their original IP)

-They can do what Aldenedeshe said the other day and reset their modem (no need to wait 10 mins though) your ISP will provide with a new IP every time you reset.

-Or they can use TOR for unlimited thumbs.

All three need time and dedication to do (the 10 – 20 block votes), takes some serious trolling dedication to do so.

I always used the thumbs system to keep track of comments, never really judged it as a measuring stick for which side people are on.

Even Facebook’s like system is flawed (I think they said recently that at least 80 million accounts are fake on Facebook) so don’t stress over the thumbs system.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:09 am



Juliet Pack, ex-Vogue writer, feels sorry and betrayed for agreeing to meet the devil and the wife from hell:


Robert Fisk is hypocrisy in action. He doesn’t seem to have much concern about the majoritiy being subject to crimes against humanity by minority(ies) he seems to only care about. Does Fisk actually support apartheid?

August 3rd, 2012, 9:49 am


Tara said:


Your recent obsession about the thumbing results is strange. It is not consistent with your unique personality. You did not strike me as someone who strive popularity. Are you rethinking your support for the regime?

This obsession over popularity is silly.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:52 am


Halabi said:

ليش الجيش الحر وقت فات على حلب, دخل معه جيش مصورين وصحفيين ومحطات اجنبية وصور الشوارع قرنة قرنة…
بينما جيش ابوشحاطة الأسدي قطع الاتصالات وشوش على المحطات وقصف المراسلين وشبيحته الإعلاميين كلهم عم يراسلوا بالتلفونات !!!

An innocent question from a friend. Why did the FSA enter Aleppo with cameras and journalist and filmed everything [from battles to the execution of the Barri thugs] while Assad’s army cuts communications and targets journalists, and the pro-Assad shabi7a media filed reports by telephone?

August 3rd, 2012, 9:52 am


irritated said:

262. Son of Damascus

If it is unreliable and can be manipulated than it should be changed to a more neutral evaluation or suppressed.
I don’t see the reason to keep it if if does not reflect anything else than the disrespect of the manipulators for the commenters.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:52 am


Halabi said:

Tara, I think you mean personalities. One of the biggest frauds of the “debate” here is that Assad worshipers, in their need to fake a reality where they appear to be a majority, post under multiple monikers. Or it could be a textbook case of dissociative identity disorder. I haven’t decided yet.

I could be wrong but there are many clues such as the timing of the posts, style and word choice that indicate there are a few here using multiple handles. Of course I could be Tara…

August 3rd, 2012, 10:09 am


Son of Damascus said:


Or you can disregard it like most commentators on here…

Personally what I find much more disrespectful is some of the truly atrocious “sources” that are being linked here, like how some commentators keep referencing White Supremacists in their usual hate Islam rants.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:13 am


AIG said:


I have been commenting on this site for years, long before the Arab spring. And I predicted many years ago already that Assad’s policies were going to lead Syria to where it is now. Just check the archives. All the while, Norman and other regime supporters were claiming that Assad is God’s gift to humanity and a special genius. Some of these people changed their mind when they saw where Assad is leading Syria. Others like Norman are just blind and cannot be helped.

Israelis in general do not really care what is happening in Syria as long as it does not affect their daily lives. I am sure there are a few Israelis that are happy to see the Syrians that funded Hamas terrorist activities against Israel suffer from their own medicine. But my view has consistently been for years that there is a huge difference between the Syrian people and the Syrian regime. While Syrians may always hate Israel, they are more interested in advancing their children’s future than in fighting wars and if they had real control over their own destiny, things would look very different.

So no, I am not happy at all that Syrians are killing each other. I would like Syrians to live with freedom, dignity and hope. And I strongly believe that when that happens, there will not be peace with Israel, but there will not be war either and that is good enough in the middle east.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:15 am


irritated said:

#268 Tara

I don’t accept people comments to be manipulated, that’s what it appears to be in the last 10 days, curiously as the same time as we got a visitor back from hell with suddenly a perfect english.

In a matter of minutes, 20 thumbs down to an article posted by Ann etc.. 20 thumbs up to the fanatic war monger. I doubt Syriacomment has become a hub for extremists. If it has that it is time to leave it in their teeth.
My popularity is low anyway, I don’t care about it.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:22 am


zoo said:

Syria government reportedly showing more restraint in Aleppo fighting
By David Enders
McClatchy Newspapers

BEIRUT — The government of Syrian President Bashar Assad appears to be taking a relatively restrained approach to the rebel presence in Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, where fighting was reported to be continuing Tuesday, even as Syrian government media claimed to have pushed the rebels out of a key neighborhood.

“We haven’t seen the sort of intense shelling we’ve seen in other parts of the country,” said a Beirut-based researcher for the advocacy group Human Rights Watch, who agreed to discuss what she and other investigators were hearing about the battle inside the city only on the condition of anonymity because of security concerns. “I think the government recognizes it has a lot of support in Aleppo.”

The researcher said the government’s reaction to rebel infiltration of Aleppo, a city of more than 2 million only 30 miles from the border with Turkey, was in stark contrast to the Syrian military’s weeks-long targeting of rebel-occupied neighborhoods in Homs, the country’s third-largest city and a bastion of anti-Assad sentiment.

“Compared to Homs, where we had indiscriminate shelling on the level of crimes against humanity, they are showing restraint,” the researcher said.

Read more here:

August 3rd, 2012, 10:26 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Thank you Syrian YouTubers. We would have been blind, if not the great work you’re doing.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:26 am


Tara said:


When I started here, I sincerely believed they are all Mukhabarats, paid to do the job. I changed my mind later on as I realized they are genuine supporters. Although I am often outraged of their inability to see the truth, and sympathize with the human suffering, I also realized they are “brainwashed” (if you will) with what could happen to them or their families should Batta fall.

This in my opinion have become a real mental disorder, a phobia, that they can’t control. This phobia shapes the way they perceive the whole world. The only cure I envision, is to achieve liberal democratic Syria by force. There is nothing that can be said to them that will reassure them and convince them to support the revolution. The problem is not that
the revolution has failed in attracting them. The problem lies in their own mental phobia. This phobia hopefully will be cured if the revolution outcome was what it intended to be: a democratic Syria where all are equal.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:31 am


Tara said:

Why are they fighting for power?  The government will only be transitional.  In any case, the SNC rejected incorporating any regime figure.  Sorry Manaf.  You are a falling star.

Syria transitional govt paramount for divided opposition
By Rita Daou | AFP – 5 hrs ago

“As more and more areas slip out of the regime’s control in Syria, and as the regime nears its collapse, the need for a national transitional government has become paramount,” the Local Coordination Committees, an influential network of activists on the ground, said on Thursday.
“Such a government is needed to help organise the civilians in liberated areas to help coordinate the revolutionary bodies and their activities in Syria. A transitional government is also needed to represent the revolution on the international level,” a statement added.
But the creation of any transitional government is hampered by fissures within the opposition.
Khattar Abu Diab, a professor of international relations at Universite Paris-Sud, said “this fragmentation is due to the absence of political life in Syria for half a century, the egos of some opposition figures and … (that) some elements of opposition may depend on external forces, which complicates things.” Seeking to overcome such divisions, the Syrian National Council (SNC), the main opposition bloc, formed two committees on Monday. One will communicate with the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA) and activists on the ground and the other establish contacts with political opponents outside the SNC, with the goal of forming a transitional government enjoying broad consensus.

The form of the government would take remains unclear but, after a heated debate, the SNC rejected the idea of a hybrid government composed of opposition members and “regime-sanctioned” figures.
This discussion took place after General Manaf Tlass, a senior regime figure who was close to the regime and who defected last month, was floated as a contender to head a national unity government.
“The current prospectives do not include any member of the current regime,” Bashar Hrak, an SNC member, told AFP.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:36 am


zoo said:

To avoid its rejection, the Saudis were forced at the last minute to remove the call for Bashar al Assad to resign and the call for new sanctions from the non-binding UN assembly resolution they sponsored.
This actually highlights that the majority of the countries reject a regime change forced by some countries, especially the ones who are not even slightly democratic.
As such this UN assembly resolution is a diplomatic failure for Saudi Arabia and Qatar, as it provoked among the members a growing suspicion of the motivation behind the relentless and hypocritical bullying by Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Syria was one of the original 51 members of the United Nations in 1945. Now, the world body set up to protect nation-states from invasion and foreign domination was about to demand a change in government from one of its charter members.

But the Saudi sponsors of the draft resolution were taken aback when General Assembly nations including Brazil, India, Pakistan, South Africa and Argentina choked on the regime change and sanctions paragraphs in the draft.
With the tougher language, the Saudi resolution was in danger of falling below 100 votes in the 193-member Assembly, and would be seen as weak and lacking moral authority. General Assembly resolutions are unenforceable. The last General Assembly resolution on Syria, in February, had 137 votes in favour.

The draft was quickly pulled back and the regime change and sanctions provisions were stricken out by Wednesday. The revised resolution still demands that the Syrian army stop its shelling and helicopter attacks and withdraw to its barracks.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:38 am


bronco said:

278. Tara said:

Why are they fighting for power?

Everybody in the politics and business fight to get more power.

Power and greed are addictive. Once you got it, you can’t get rid of it. The opposition is not immune to these diseases.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:43 am


Tara said:

I agree with the American defense minister that the army should be preserved in new Syria ( of course minus the 4th brigade and the republicans guards). Now that hopefully victory is imminent, Syrian intellectual should have a discourse in regard to the days after Besho, not just in regard to establishing real democracy, protecting minorities, etc…but also have a serious plan in regard to fighting Foreign jihadists. I am not concerned about the Syrians being radicalized, I know who we are. I am seriously concerned about the foreign jihadists lurking in and spreading chaos. I do not see much discussion among the opposition about Jihadists except the recent interview with Ghalioun with the French press where he admitted their presence. I wish we know their real number.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:49 am


bronco said:


The problem is not that, the revolution has failed in attracting them.

The way the ‘revolution’ turned out by relying on all the hateful warmongers in the region, I am surprised that anyone with common sense still believes that this ‘revolution’ is ‘attractive’. I doubt that the “opposition” as we have seen it evolve in the last 15 months, more divided, polluted and bloody, would ever be able to bring justice and security in Syria.
That’s not a phobia, its common sense

August 3rd, 2012, 10:51 am


Tara said:

Bronco @280

Searching for the one honest sincere Syrian who does not want to accumulate stolen wealth or to cling to power…… We as a nation must have at least one…

August 3rd, 2012, 10:56 am


bronco said:

#281 Tara

The opposition is in total denial about the Jihadists. Admitting that they are present among them and helping the FSA would make them loose the little credibility they still have in West.

The Jihadists know they are needed, so they come in masses and infiltrate the FSA that soon will fall victims of that “tolerated” virus.
The FSA is in a state of panic, they are bound to loose the war as help from the “generous” sponsors Saudi Arabia and Qatar is sufficient enough to resist but not to win. For them any outside help is welcome, even the jihadists. “We will deal with them after” they said

August 3rd, 2012, 10:58 am


Aldendeshe said:

I love thumb down, so as TARA.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:03 am


bronco said:

283. Tara said:

Searching for the one honest sincere Syrian

I have been hoping for that for the last 15 months.
It is not enough to be honest to be a leader. Many other qualities are required.
While many opposition members showed to have the natural flaws of a leader, none has shown to have these qualities.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:05 am


Mina said:

Never too late to change side!

After re-tweeting Mr Avaaz without blinking for months, wasalat akhiran?

August 3rd, 2012, 11:11 am


zoo said:

Hundreds of protesters in Aleppo’s rebels held area of Al-Shaar demand death for Assad

ALEPPO, Syria – Agence France-Presse

Protesters in Aleppo took to the streets today to demand death for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad even as violence raged between regime forces and rebels, an AFP journalist and rights watchdog said.

Hundreds of protesters gathered in the al-Shaar neighbourhood of the country’s economic capital, chanting: “The people want the execution of Bashar!” and “The people want freedom and peace,” an AFP reporter saw.

“We go down the street with a single objective: the liberation of the country,” said 20-year-old protester Abu Ahmed.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:11 am


Tara said:


You are mixing things together.  The revolution is genuine revolution of the oppressed against a tyranny.  Did you see the photos of the rebels linked by Amir last night?  These  were average ordinary Syrians.  The baker, the A.C. technician, a teacher, a student, a shoe seller, a government employee.. who had to take up arms to protect self, family and the country against a brutal tyranny.  These people has no foreign agenda.  They are not trying to accumulate wealth, and they are not going to get to a chair of power.  These are the revolution.  They are not part of a conspiracy.  I am not part if a conspiracy.  I genuinely want the best for my home land.  You are failing to see through all the noise.  It is a legit revolution for freedom, dignity, and equality.   The external opposition including Ryad al Assad are just that: external.  They can fight for greed and power as much as the want but they are not the revolution.  

This was Batta’s historical and fatal mistake, denying it’s legitimacy, calling it a global conspiracy when it is original and home-grown.  Of course, everyone would try to take advantage of it but that does not change it’s essence.  I am sorry that you can’t see that.    

August 3rd, 2012, 11:14 am


zoo said:

Qatar deeply involved in corruption at the FIFA

FIFA issues 90-day suspension to Bin Hammam to buy time in lengthy battle

James M. Dorsey

The CAS ruling left little doubt that the judges believed that Bin Hammam, a 63-year old Qatari national, was more likely than not guilty of the charges brought against him.

The report alleges that Bin Hammam used AFC accounts for his own benefit, as well as that of his family, friends and football bodies across the globe. The report also raised questions about Bin Hammam’s management of a $1 billion master rights agreement (MRA) with WSG, a $300 million broadcasting rights contract with the Qatar-owned al-Jazeera television network, as well as his financial relationship to parties with possible vested interests in those deals.

FIFA’s investigation into Bin Hammam is likely to be the tip of the iceberg. Wracked in recent years by a series of high-profile corruption scandals and persistent controversy over the awarding of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar, FIFA’s investigation will inevitably broaden to review not only the Qatari’s involvement in the bid, but also the bid itself. That is probably also true for the expected AFC and Malaysian investigations.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:17 am


bronco said:

289. Tara

I know that. The protesters wanted a better life, they had claims for more justice, I know that, yet they have been manipulated into believing that this will come if the regime changes and if Bashar Al Assad leaves. He is the scapegoat of everything that went wrong in the country in the past 11 years.

The army is made of the sons of the baker, the shoe sellers etc… and they still stand strongly on the side of the ‘regime’.

When the Damascus battle started, Sayda called for general strikes and uprising to help the victory, nothing happened. In Aleppo the same is happening, no massive uprising except a few hundreds protesters in rebel-held areas.
Most analysts agree that the large cities are not supporting the opposition as it was expected from the rumors.
Do you still think the ‘revolution’ has the full support of the “Syrian people” ?

August 3rd, 2012, 11:29 am


zoo said:

Turkey pouring oil on the fire brewing between Al Maliki and Barzani. Can they get away with it?

Davutoglu in Kirkuk: Iraq denounces underestimation of its sovereignty

Turkish FM’s visit to northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk without informing Baghdad infuriates Iraq, brings relations to new low.
By Marwan Ibrahim – KIRKUK (Iraq)

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu visited the disputed northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk on Thursday without informing Baghdad, infuriating Iraq and bringing relations to a new low.

Davutoglu made the side-trip to Kirkuk while on a visit to Iraqi Kurdistan, whose leaders have long called for the incorporation of the ethnically divided oil city in their autonomous region in the north, against strong opposition from Baghdad.

Kirkuk province is part of a swathe of disputed territory in northern Iraq that along with oil contracts are the two main points of contention between Baghdad and the Kurdish regional government in Arbil.

The Iraqi foreign ministry issued a statement saying that “it is not in the interest of Turkey or any other party to underestimate the national sovereignty and violate the rules of international relations and not comply with the most basic regulations in the relations of states and officials.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:45 am


Amjad said:

“Saudi Arabia won a Guiness record at the Olympics…”

The Gulf countries, with a slightly smaller total population than Syria, never the less sent more women athletes to the London 2012 olympic games.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:47 am



Just in case you are wondering (whoever you are) shennanigan pranks do not IRRITATE me at all, and neithet do they stimulate me to engage in an intelligent argument with such a prank.

Hope the SC Moderator will take notice and apply appropriate action to such repeated slurs, may be a warning to begin with.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:59 am


irritated said:

292. Amjad said:

The Gulf countries, with a slightly smaller total population than Syria, never the less sent more women athletes to the London 2012 olympic games.

Unlike the FIFA, money can pay tickets but can’t buy out the Olympic Juries.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:16 pm


irritated said:


Using capitals and bold is a sign of heavy irritation… as always, in denial.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:18 pm


ghufran said:

it looks like the fight in Altadamon is coming to an end,the army stormed the rebels’ areas with tanks and more than 1,000 soldiers.
the rebels fought for more than 1 week and held the army back until last night. When is this violence coming to an end?

August 3rd, 2012, 12:20 pm


zoo said:

Syrian army storms rebels’ last Damascus stronghold – reports

­Syrian troops stormed Damascus’ southern district of Tadamon with dozens of tanks, armored vehicles and soldiers, Reuters reports. The escalations came as rebels attempted to win back control of their last stronghold in the Syrian capital. Activists said most of the district was under the control of government forces by early evening.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:20 pm


ghufran said:

أقدمت تركيا على خطوة غير مسبوقة منذ بدء الأزمة السورية عندما اجتاز محافظ كيليس الحدود مع سوريا بصورة غير شرعية وتقدم لمصافحة مسلحي “الجيش السوري الحر”.
وتحمل الخطوة التركية، التي رافقها إصرار على السماح لقناة تلفزيونية خاصة ووسائل إعلامية بالتقاط الصور للمحافظ داخل الأراضي السورية، اكثر من رسال

August 3rd, 2012, 12:30 pm


zoo said:

Syria-Lebanon Border: A Show of Force

Heavy army deployment seems to have curbed cross-border smuggling in the Bekaa, while turning the Lebanese side into a 2-5 km-wide security zone.

Things have changed along Lebanon’s eastern borders with Syria over the past few days. It is no longer possible to move freely on the Lebanese side to observe military developments inside Syria, or make contact with the Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters who used to infiltrate into Lebanon at night – whether seeking medical treatment for wounds, or to take back military and other equipment and supplies. The Syrian army no longer tolerates any suspicious movement along the border. The days of the ineffectual hajjana (camel corps) border police are over. Wandering near the border, even on the Lebanese side, is sufficient reason to get shot at.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:32 pm



Use of capitals and bold letters are effective tools in elevating delinquent pranks abilities to comprehend.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:33 pm


SC Moderator said:


Please refrain from calling visitor “visitor from hell”. Posters should be addressed by the name they have chosen. Thank you.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:35 pm


irritated said:

Another Syrian general defects to Turkey
AFPAFP – 1 hr 40 mins ago

99,980 to go to fill the new Turkish refugees camps

August 3rd, 2012, 12:36 pm


irritated said:


The latest “gag” is the fireworks of Damascus you announced as a volcano.
More pranks to come.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:43 pm


ghufran said:

حصلت الممثلة شكران مرتجى الحاملة للجنسية الفلسطينية على الجنسية السورية، وذلك بعد نحو أربع سنوات من زواجها من الفنان علاء قاسم، وفق القرار رقم (277/م/ن) الصادر عن وزارة الداخلية السورية بتاريخ 17 حزيران من العام الجاري.
وجاء في نص القرار “تعتبر السيدة شكران مرتجى ابنة عبد الوهاب والدتها عائدة المولودة في الطائف السعودية بتاريخ 12 كانون الأول 1970 متمتعة بالجنسية العربية السورية لزواجها من المواطن علاء قاسم ابن جابر”.
why is this relevant?
compare Syria’s treatment to Palestinians to that of the GCC,I still have memories from my childhood about how my mother’s relatives were never looked at or treated as foreigners. Syrians are good people and they will eventually go back to their senses despite the filth you hear from non Syrians on this board.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:46 pm


zoo said:

Another transitional government announcement?

Syria: SNC to announce transitional government (within weeks…after Aleppo becomes Benghazi)


By Paula Astatih
Beirut, Asharq Al-Awsat- Following the growing criticisms of Haytham al-Maleh’s -chairman of the “Syrian Revolution’s Board of Trustees” [SRBT]- announcement of his intention to form a transitional government and the view of the Syrian National Council [SNC] member Muhammad Sarmini has revealed that two SNC committees are holding intensive consultations to announce the formation of a transitional government within weeks. He pointed out that “there is a serious effort to have the venue for the announcement and its base in a liberated area inside Syria similar to Benghazi.”

Sarmini told Asharq Al-Awsat that one of these two committees was holding consultations on this with the revolutionary forces and the FSA while the other was holding consultations with the political forces. He stressed that “the SNC’s priority at present is not this government but providing support for the FSA to liberate Aleppo and the other governorates.” He pointed out: The SNC’s attention is at present focused on determining the tasks of this government and not the names that will participate in it because competent persons who have no connection with the regime will be chosen after these tasks have been determined.

SNC Chairman Abdul Basit Sida expressed surprise at the SRBT’s announcement about forming a government and asked “how can an entity announce its establishment and at the same time its desire to form a transitional government?” He said that “this new entity’s hastiness and announcement of this desire were improper” and urged those in charge to back down on it.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:48 pm


Tara said:

133 in favor, 12 against, 33 abstained in General Assembly. Bashar is going down in history as the murderer who killed his own people.

August 3rd, 2012, 12:54 pm


bronco said:

#307 Tara

4 less than the previous resolution’s vote after it has been watered down at the last minute by Saudi Arabia to become another toothless UN assembly non-binding resolution.

A victory?

August 3rd, 2012, 1:06 pm


Tara said:


Of course a victory. It tells you in essence that 70% of the countries in the world and all the Arabs want Bashar gone. Not only the vast majority of his people hate him, the whole world hates him…

August 3rd, 2012, 1:12 pm


bronco said:

#309 Tara

It tells you in essence that 70% of the countries in the world and all the Arabs want Bashar gone.

Sorry, I think you are mistaken, the resolution doesn’t ask Bashar to go. This clause was withdrawn because Saudi Arabia felt it would get a humiliating defeat if it stayed. Compared to the previous resolution the only new item is a clause about the chemical weapons. Not even new sanctions…

In fact that last minute change shows exactly the opposite: more than 70% do not agree on a forced regime change, and agree on Annan peace plan with a syrian-lead political transition.

August 3rd, 2012, 1:20 pm


Observer said:

Majbali thanks for the explanations. Most of what you noted I knew already but was not sure of its veracity.

Tara can you tell us of the break up of the UN assembly votes?

August 3rd, 2012, 1:25 pm


Tara said:


The resolution did not ask directly for Bashar to step down but it condemned the regime for using heavy weapons against the people in addition to the chemicals weapons item. It also called for political transition of power. Now you can interpret transition of power any way you like but it means in essence giving up the power to the Syrian people without killing them. You can’t transition power and staying as president. Can you?


I do not know. Will link it when available.

August 3rd, 2012, 1:44 pm


Observer said:

Two things the General Assembly deplores the lack of action by the SC and therefore is an indirect rebuke to the vetos.

Second Annan in FT clearly put the blame first and foremost on the regime for intransigence and for the choice of a military solution to the conflict.

It is clear that this is now a civil war in full swing. The country is finished and will require now two generations for healing and stability.

Sorry no cheers today except for the fighters in Syria

August 3rd, 2012, 2:00 pm


Observer said:

Guess of the votes agains tthe resolution
any idea on the others?

August 3rd, 2012, 2:02 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

I hope Irritated gets over the fainting spell with regard to the easily-manipulable thumb system. As Son of Damascus notes, the red and green marks are best used solely as an “I have read this” marker by individuals.

Those whose lungs labour for air, and whose hearts are a-flutter about this side-issue, did these same folks fall victim to the vapours during earlier block-voting suspicions? No, of course not. In the earlier madcap thumbing episodes, it was the stupefied regimists who were suspected, so the rah-rah Assad supporters in the nose-bleed seats were properly quiet at that time.

Seriously, is it not a symptom of the masked spectator syndrome that these meaningless signifiers are given importance in the first place? For those like Irritated who are purely spectators, who view Syrian events as if a cosmic stadium sport, the scoreboard is important! What does this tell us?

I think these vapourous ladies and gentlemen view the torment as a game, a game they can only understand in terms of war/sport rhetoric. This crimped vantage impoverishes their own understanding. Goal for Bashar! – Turkey is humiliated. Goal for Bashar! France is in a snit. Goal for Bashar! The emirs are big fat pigs. Goal for Bashar! The Syrian Congress is quarreling. Goal for Bashar! terrorists take the borders. Goal for Bashar! the Security Cabinet gets blown up. Goal for Bashar! Hillary is gnashing her teeth.

This partisan yahoo mentality, its jocular play-by-play and ‘colour commentary’ — for these guys, the important thing is Team Spirit, singalongs, and other barely-disguised soccer-fan fun.

What I want to stress here is that Irritated’s present dyspepsia is grimly hilarious. The capper is the call to “suppress” the scoreboard, or to depart, with one last lame attempt to corral all under the tent of Pro-Chaos.

What are you, Irritated? A long-time sport-of-war voice, but what else?

Please explain if you can — as have most serious commentators here — your interest in Syria and your vantage upon it. Tell us of your moral education, your core values, something, anything that we may open our hearts to you. Consider it another lesser-known parlour sport: truth or dare.

Maybe you are a bit like Al Dandy Dash, with an Air Siberia wife and a shack in Key West. Maybe you are like Tara, with elite-class family in the capital. Maybe you are like SNP, a kind of outgrowth (How To Get Ahead In Advertising) from the shoulder of Al Dandy. We do not know. You do not say. So, stick around. Don’t move toward darkness, gather your skirts and flounce off to the exits. Don’t leave the stadium because your team is having a difficult moment. If you are a serious friend of Syria, you know that it needs less war rhetoric, and less sniggering from the sidelines.


Thanks to Son of Damascus, Observer and Mjabali for more details of Alawi social/political reality. I think this is essential discussion.

My sympathies, overwhelmingly with those who have suffered arbitrary oppression, include a large well of empathy for this distinct group. Alawi are the first victims of the Baath junta, their cultural expression extirpated and their community chained to the security state by fear and favour.

They deserve better than Assadism. They deserve full civil freedoms as any other, but like no other, they are most subject to risk of reprisal. Ordinary Alawi are disposable fodder for the War, otherwise just as penned in and subject to an unmerciful government as any community. Thank you men for approaching the issues with an eye to truth and historical record.

As Amjad points out, the social compact among peoples arguably has not irretrievably broken — the unique tapestry quilt of Syria’s peoples is pock-holed, scorched, in some cases ground thin as tissue by tank treads, but it is not yet slashed to pieces. Much of the denunciations of the Berri atrocity came from Syrian “Pro-Chaos” centres — summary executions of Alawi citizens is not on the menu of liberation; this choice is the first choice of the squads of the 4th who performed ‘cleaning’ via headshots to civilians yesterday. The further atrocity at the Palestinian camp is not even acknowledged by the fainters in their snoods. Goal for Assad! he shells a Palestinian neighbourhood in Damascus!

Meanwhile, those clutching pearls and leaning towards leaving the stadium, a few deep breaths and a squirt of water and the panic attack can become manageable.

Goal for Assad! Syria Comment is a b***h so I’m taking my vuvuzela and going home

August 3rd, 2012, 2:08 pm


Aldendeshe said:

despite the filth you hear from non Syrians on this board.

@GHUFRAN. They are not Syrians anymore than those slaughtered in Damascus Volcano were. Do you really think Syrians will say and do the things these people say and do; they are foreigners, Israelis, paid Lebanese and Palestinians with an identity script. Don’t be fooled by the every now and then re-inforcement of the myth statements, such as “Oh,I miss my home in Damascus so much” or “we Syrians”.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:11 pm


Elian said:

it is weird that terrorists, rebels, mercenaries claim masacre only when scores of them get killed by the Syrian army, but forget to admit to killing innocent people.
it is clear that this foreign mercenaries are not going back home alive god willing.
anyone who kills Syrians will have be finished on syrian soil.
It seems the traitor has large stash of supplies of these jihadists who are willing to die for money of for retard theology.
it is clear that large percent of the Syrian sunni has not joind the so called the revolution in part because it is not a revolution but a conspiracy financed by the dirt bags of GCC and the retards jihadists from south Asia and rest of Arabs retard radicals.
Sunni Syrian expatriates have been sending MONEY to finance the turmoil, it is well known that this is the MB in the expatriate.
I am hoping to see the day when Syria will reect all this thugs, terrorists, mercenaries for the benefit of Syria not the benefit of the western and GCC countries.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:14 pm


Tara said:

I am growing fond of Sayda. He is having a press conference in Erbil aired on alJazeera now. I think he is a great guy.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:24 pm


Aldendeshe said:

AAHH, OH AHHH, I am growing fond of BISHO. He is having a press conference in Moscow aired on RT now. I think he is a great guy.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:27 pm


Aldendeshe said:

OK TARA, we are going to win the thumb race on #316. It is nice to feel and play giddy and girly.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:30 pm


Aldendeshe said:

AHHH,AHHH I feel like a giddy lil Jewish girl on someone payroll jumping up and down, we won, we won on #319 GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAl for the sane real Syrians team.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:40 pm


Elian said:

I am not sure if Mr. Landis linked this below article, but it is worth mentioning that one true voice of truth and probably should be linked here on SC.
it is a clear situation that the USA has been playing dirty game with Syria, everyone knows that Assad was not as bad as the west made him seem like considering other leaders in the region, even the Jordanian king is much worse than Assad.

August 3rd, 2012, 2:47 pm


Visitor said:

If anyone is interested in Alawi beliefs (more accurately Nussayri beliefs), I suggest he/she goes to the source instead of relying on second-hand and clearly inaccurate information.

Muhammad Ibn Nusayr is the founder of this group. He claimed to be the Shia bab (gate) for the Imam. The bab title was invented by some Shia groups after the Imam’s death without having a successor. He The bab) gave himself the authority to issue injunctions to his followers with the same weight as the deceased Imam. Main Shia groups disavowed Ibn Nusayr as heretic and in-authentic. Their (Alawis) proper description is Nusayris. The Alawi misnomer was given to them by the French. The Syrian Alawis are related neither in belief nor in ethnicity to the Turkish Alevi’s as they would like to imply because of the misnaming confusion.

Books about Muhammad Ibn Nusayr are readily available. You can probably download a copy from the net by making a google search if you type the Arabic name.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:01 pm


irritated said:

315. William Scott Scherk

Sorry I can’t thumb up because I can’t reach the end of the first paragraph without wondering if I am reading a Jane Austen novel excerpt or a political comment

August 3rd, 2012, 3:06 pm


Juergen said:

The journalist (Süddeutsche Zeitung)Thomas Avenarius is at this moment in Damascus. He has been to Aleppo during the last days. Here is an interview with him:

The government did not attempt in any way to control you?

Avenarius: The government has not prevented me from anything, because the government has not made ​​itself visible. Even the people in the government dare not to go on the streets. I should have registered myself to the mayor of Aleppo. There I called and asked if someone can pick me up , but they said that I would get there by myself. The taxi driver then, however, said: I do not go there. The central government organizations are fortresses. They are the main targets of the rebels. Nobody enters or gets out of them.

You are now in Damascus. The regime claims to have repulsed the attack of the rebels there.

Avenarius: It’s not true. Today I heard again shots. Bombs are falling constantly. If you drive from the airport into the city, then you can see huge buses – no trucks – in which the soldiers are brought to the fighting. In a quarter of yesterday, I saw about 15 of these buses, 50 men per vehicle and a few jeeps with mounted machine guns. Damascus is not under control.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:11 pm


Juergen said:


thank you, that is a heart opener, so you detest Jane Austen.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:17 pm


bronco said:

312. Tara

The resolution did not ask directly for Bashar to step down but it condemned the regime for using heavy weapons against the people

The resolution is exactly the same as the one voted on 16 february 2012 with 137 for, 12 against and 17 abstentions.( read it). It has been quickly forgotten.
The only new item in this one is the obvious chemical weapons worry. That’s what the media are insisting on as there is nothing else new
It hasn’t change much since February, it won’t change anything now. It’s another failed Saudi attempt to bully the UN.
Next UN assembly meeting in 6 months with the same resolution?

August 3rd, 2012, 3:18 pm


irritated said:

327. Juergen

Did I say so? Am I supposed to enjoy reading Jane Austen’s prose on a political blog?

August 3rd, 2012, 3:20 pm


irritated said:

324. Visitor

In summary what you try to say is that the Alawites are lunatics and heretics. Thanks, we heard that before. Protestant are heretics, orthodox are heretics, ismaelians are lunatics and heretics.. so what?

August 3rd, 2012, 3:28 pm


Tara said:


I do not really know the point of the new resolution. What is KSA’s expectation? Bullying the UN into what exactly? Was this step to provide a political cover for something in the work outside the UNSC? It seems to me as a waste of time and energy as Bashar clinging to power will not loosen by finding out that the world would like him gone.

The outcome of the armed showdown will decide what happens next. This outcome is influenced by how many quality weapons, as well as non-lethal equipments, and material support are provided to the FSA. Are “quality weapons” not sold in the black market?

August 3rd, 2012, 3:35 pm


Juergen said:

Father Paolos message to the Syrians. ( Arabic only, the english subtitles which can be found under cc make no sense)!

I wonder who taught him the quaf pronounciation…

August 3rd, 2012, 3:37 pm


irritated said:

#326 Juergen

We know that there are still pockets of armed gangs in Damascus. It will take a few weeks to neutralize them totally.
No surprise if the journalist hears some noises.
What was he expecting?
It’s a war area he is visiting not a picnic area.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:39 pm


irritated said:


I wonder who taught him the quaf pronounciation…

OMG, he became a heretic. He won’t be welcomed in Syria anymore once the Sunni caliphate will take over.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:41 pm


Juergen said:

See Irritated thats what I detest: words and opinions who calls for an neutralization, an cleansing ect. Why dont you call for the death of all who are against Assad? Thats what those words mean: mass killings.

‘Iranians ashamed of Iran’s stance in Syrian crisis,’ says human rights activist

August 3rd, 2012, 3:50 pm


bronco said:


Remember the resolution that Qatar and Saudi Arabia forced into the throat of the Arab League: It called specifically for Bashar to quit.

Since that time, Saudi Arabian and Qatar has been harassing the UN to vote for a resolution that endorses the AL plan and calls for Bashar to step down.
The vetoes and Annnan’s plan stopped them short. They were fulminating at Annan.

They tried again in February 2102 with a UN assembly resolution but they failed again.
They have been using all the tricks possible to sneak that request at the UN. Previously they used the “synchronized” massacres to include in the resolution the call for Bashar to go.
Last they thought they could force the UN to pass a resolution in that respect by taking advantage of the fear about the chemical weapons. It did not work and they had to withdraw the calls.

They have failed over and over because the UN assembly won’t be fooled and bullied and the UNSC can be vetoed by Russia and China.

Qatar and Saudi Arabia are humiliated and furious at Bashar Al Assad who dares defy them, and that really rejoices me.

August 3rd, 2012, 3:58 pm


irritated said:

336. Juergen

I call for the condemnation of all the enemies of the state and outlaws. No one should be allowed to carry arms against the army of one’s country. The ones who do are outlaws. If they resist their arrest by using violence, then they will be killed

When the french terrorists was killed by the police, did you object?
When the USA bombs Afghanistan with drones to kill and ‘cleanup’ terrorists areas, do you object?
When the US Army was ‘cleaning up’ areas in Iraq where Iraqis outlaws were fighting for their ideals, did you object?
When Turkey kills scores of turkish kurds, do you object?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:06 pm


Juergen said:

I just found this video from 26 July

sorry i couldnt help, but after reading the title of this site:Center of studies for the revelation in Syria, i felt reminded of happier days eating out in small restaurants in Syria which offererd sauce bearneese and of buses which had signs like : Happy Jorney.

So what gives a shabih the right to terrorize and carry a gun ? Why does the regime hand out guns to Christian families in the Bab Touma area?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:09 pm


irritated said:

Do yo remember this “grand” prediction? Is he now in Qurdaha or back to Antakya?

106. majedkhaldoun said:

The Free Syrian Army declared that his forces are ready to take over Damascus,They have 30,000 soldiers, along with officers and soldiers who are ready to join,and most of Damascus residents, to do the job, The pro Assad troops must prepare themselves, their fate is coming soon, There will be surprises, Assad has to run away, probably outside Syria, but if he decided to stay, we will not bury him there, not in Damascus, not in Qurdaha either,Hopefully I will be there too, I am preparing to go back to Antakia next month,hopefully from there I will,get to Damascus.


August 3rd, 2012, 4:17 pm


anwar said:

stop running in circles it is pathetic
Assadonia is not a legitimate state
it is the people who decide their govt
this is much like the french revolution
It will end the same with Assad’s head rolling
Arguing technicalities while completely misinterpreting the situation is dishonest.
Disclose your allegiance to Assad and stop fooling around.
la tjdabah plz

August 3rd, 2012, 4:24 pm


William Scott Scherk said:

For those manning the microphones up in the Baath/4th Division VIP box, thanks for the truth or dare analogy to Austen, one of the great writers in English. Juergen was sensitive to point out the poignancy of this opening of the heart to others …

I note that a facing-page Arabic/English edition of Pride and Prejudice is widely available []. I do not know if the niqab/full-snood dyspeptic was thinking of these passages from that masterpiece of world fiction, passages which no doubt are just as sharp and pithy in the language of the prophet:

The power of doing anything with quickness is always prized much by the possessor, and often without any attention to the imperfection of the performance.

No one can be really esteemed accomplished who does not greatly surpass what is usually met with.

The gentlemen pronounced him to be a fine figure of a man, the ladies declared he was much handsomer than Mr. Bingley, and he was looked at with great admiration for about half the evening, till his manners gave a disgust which tuned the tide of his popularity; for he was discovered to be proud, to be above his company, and above being pleased; and not all his large estate in Derbyshire could then save him from having a most forbidding, disagreeable countenance, and being unworthy to be compared with his friend.

That was freaking Jane Austen, fergawdsakes.

This is William Scott Scherk on Syria Comment, a stiff and bombastic churl next to Jane, a passage which evidently did not register with Irritated as contrasting Austen (who did not dwell on 21st century Alawis in Syria). “Jane, you ignorant slut, what the **** could you know about Syria?”

As Amjad points out, the social compact among peoples arguably has not irretrievably broken — the unique tapestry quilt of Syria’s peoples is pock-holed, scorched, in some cases ground thin as tissue by tank treads, but it is not yet slashed to pieces. Much of the denunciations of the Berri atrocity came from Syrian “Pro-Chaos” centres — summary executions of Alawi citizens is not on the menu of liberation; this choice is the first choice of the squads of the 4th who performed ‘cleaning’ via headshots to civilians yesterday. The further atrocity at the Palestinian camp is not even acknowledged by the fainters in their snoods. Goal for Assad! he shells a Palestinian neighbourhood in Damascus!


August 3rd, 2012, 4:34 pm




To be a good syrian one must ignore global world reality, right?

I wonder if you write from inside Syria. Can you confirm?

I left Syria 8 months ago, and after leaving my flat and my bussiness there on technical bankruptcy I have decided not to go back to Damascus never again until Assad is ousted from power.

I hope, although, God takes me to Damascus soon and I hope to enjoy visiting revolution villages and talking to people to know more details about how everything happened. One day nearer to the end.

Considering those who are outside Syria as non syrians will not help you in your political aspirations.

August 3rd, 2012, 4:37 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

[ caution: GRAPHIC (for mnhebaks) ]

August 3rd, 2012, 4:40 pm



314. Observer

Maybe Republic of Wadiyah voted against too?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:40 pm


Aldendeshe said:

I call for the condemnation of all the enemies of the state and outlaws. No one should be allowed to carry arms against the army of one’s country. The ones who do are outlaws. If they resist their arrest by using violence, then they will be killed

That is only true if the country government and leaders are the officially, legitimately elected ones under a National Constitution approved by the majority of citizens. Otherwise, it s called a “Mafia Regime” and you know how different Mafias will fight and kill to get into power, to be in monopolistic position to hordes and sell commodities of value.

This Baathist Syrian regime ruling now under own Baathist Constitution that is never accepted or ratified by the majority of Syrians, nor any of the positions in the Government nor the Military are legally held, it is a fair game for competing powers. It cannot operate as monopolistic Mafia and claim protection under Rule of Law of Nations and States.

The use of arms in this conflict is a matter not related to the point of legality but of not being an effective strategy. Add the foreigners and mercenaries elements and that makes it even more peculiar. Specially, when those elements are targeting innocent civilians based solely on faith and place of birth. So you have now a dominant Mafia and a really nasty, bloody one trying to unseat them.

August 3rd, 2012, 4:40 pm



343. Amir in Tel Aviv

Great link!!! Could you reach one with Nasrallah and Ariel Sharon heads?

August 3rd, 2012, 4:46 pm


zoo said:

Syria Turkmen under Ottoman sultans banners

Turkmens ‘draft’ sultans into battle

ALEPPO – Hürriyet Daily News
Syrian Turkmens who have joined the rebels have named their military units for two Ottoman sultans, Fatih Sultan Mehmet and Sultan Abdülhamid. They lack arms, however, and are demanding supplies from Turkey

İpek Yezdani İpek Yezdani

Syrian Turkmens who have joined the opposition have announced the formation of their own brigades of Turkmen fighters under the roof of the al-Tawhid Brigade of the rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The Turkmens have decided to name their brigades after two Ottoman sultans: “Fatih Sultan Mehmet” (Mehmet the Conqueror) and “Sultan Abdülhamid.”

Members of the group have said they most demand arms from the Turkish government. “I have the names of 1,500 Turkmen soldiers registered in the Free Syrian Army, but only 300 of them can fight now because we don’t have arms. First and foremost, we want arms from the international community, especially from Turkey,” Ali Beshir, the organizational leader of the Syrian Turkmens and the person in charge of the Turkmen brigades, told the Hürriyet Daily News on Aug. 2 in a Turkmen village in northern Syria.

Beshir said machine guns were being sold on the black market by arms traders in Syria, but that they did not have enough money to buy such weapons. Beshir also said they did not have any problems with Syrian Kurds but admitted to worries about the Democratic Union Party (PYD), which has ties to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).

August 3rd, 2012, 6:09 pm


Aldendeshe said:

Man why do you always ask the Qs, that I will be willing to pay someone to ask it?

August 3rd, 2012, 6:10 pm


Syrialover said:

Keep going, keep going – something will take hold and firm up.

Note the emphasis on including those currently inside Syria in the thick of battle.

US Courts Emerging Leaders in Syria to Avoid Iraq Pitfalls

As the United States scrambles to establish ties with emerging leaders in the Syrian opposition, President Barack Obama’s administration is trying hard to avoid an exile-centric strategy that risks repeating the debacle of Iraq.

Steven Heydemann, a Middle East expert at the US Institute of Peace (USIP), who at the behest of the administration has been working with Syrian opposition figures for 10 months on a “day after” strategy for Syria, told Al-Monitor that Syrians active in the fight against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime have been able to join in discussions outside the country about a political transition. That includes a conference Heydemann attended this week in Cairo.

“There is an enormous effort underway to engage people within Syria,” he said.

Unlike the situation in Iraq, when the former President George W. Bush’s administration relied on long-time Iraqi exiles such as Ahmed Chalabi — self-promoters with their own political and financial agendas — to dictate the shape of a new iraqi government, the US has other options in Syria, Heydemann said. These involve direct consultations with those who are in the thick of the rebellion against the Assad regime.

“You’d be amazed at how many [members of the opposition] are moving back and forth across the border with Turkey,” Heydemann said, as the rebels take control of more and more territory within Syria and control border posts.

Andrew Tabler, a Syria expert at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy who embarks later this week on a month-long trip to the region, said it was also possible to conduct “meetings” with opposition leaders within Syria thanks to Skype and other technological advances not available in the past.

The US government has “spent a lot of money so these people have good Internet access,” Tabler told Al-Monitor on Thursday.
State Department Syria envoy Fred Hof and Mounir Ibrahim, a deputy to US Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford, are also traveling almost constantly in the region to meet with a range of Syrian opposition representatives and defectors.

The USIP-convened group “has made strenuous efforts to include as many members of the opposition as possible,” said Sasha Ghosh-Siminoff, a US activist with the Syria Emergency Task Force. He said he is in close touch with Syrian opposition activists in the Idlib and Aleppo regions, where he lived in 2011. The US is “banking on [the USIP transition] plan, it’s the most unified, comprehensive effort to date to lay the groundwork for whatever comes after,” Ghosh-Siminoff told Al-Monitor on Wednesday.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:10 pm


Aldendeshe said:


I do not believe that you are Syrian, you may have visited the country, but I did meet once in Monterey Marriot a blond haired young man that understood what I was saying to my company of men at the registration desk, and it was so surprising to see this Anglo-Saxon speaking better Arabic, far more fluently than any of us could, with no accent whatsoever, the surprise gone when I remembered that the famed Defense Language Institute is in town. So yes U.S. training can be far more sophisticated than “El Rag Mossad” and you would have the knowledge about Syria to pass the litmus test most likely.

Well, I left Syria in 1970 and vowed to never return until the Baathist are out, 312 SNPIER did the same. Almost all of us left homes and business and parted out, some of us have their properties ceased and confiscated and we never received any compensation. Few SNP members lost millions of Dollars and walked out just with whatever the family little saving stashed abroad.

Sorry, we do not share your “viral zist” for this revolution at all though, we seen this class of Syrians cheering the Baathist on when we left, and they gave us the boot up the butt. We watched the same revolting class enjoy the Baathism for 4 decades, for as long as the wealth our members families created, and when they ruined it all, the Baathist Socialist comrades stole it all, it got tough, Baathism no longer popular for this class. Now why are you asking us to have compassion to them? That is hard for us to understand.

If you are truly Syrian, you would not, and should not, be afraid and hide, what is your real name, who are you? How can we contact you. Can we see your CV? Maybe with your qualifications and experiences we need to recommend you into transition Government, at one point Assad will need to receive this demand. If you to type my name on Google, you will get more than 11,000 search result. You can learn all about me. If I typed Sandro Loewe, I get the same fictitious name results you can find on Syria comment.

Are you afraid that Bashar Mukhbarat going to come after you? You think they will waste their time on someone that is not in position of millions or WMD. I can assure you that despite all I personally said and done to this Baathist regime since 1963, I have no fear of walking into Syria. So if you are real Syrian person, and those others claiming to be one, let see some proof of that, there are more than 8000 blog on the internet by Syrians, and despite the fact that they present condemning materials on the regime, you can click on about us ad learn who they are, many are still living in Syria. There are many opposition groups and individuals operating freely in Damascus. Another opposition party SSNP is running a ministry, he was in jail before. So what is your problem, what is the other posters and commenter’s problem here? Other than the fact you will need to get a THABET name first.

I personally do not have any political aspiration at all. I am an artist, designer and inventor. None of SNP members at this age they reached have an interest in Political position in Syria. The children and grand children are all belong to more than 27 Nationalities. Few of the second/ 3rd generation speak Arabic. My Arabic is that of a Seven Grader at best. We are after political position for the Syrian Nationalist Party (SSNPS) in Syria after tossing the Baathists into a corner. This is the last year I will lead this group if SNP is not in Syria by my next birthday, I had this position since September 15, 1987. Coming March 15 is my 60’s birthday, will go back to develop the Compressed Air Electric Generator, the anti gravity vehicle, and several other awesome space and deep sea technologies.

Now, as you see, I am a real person, few on this blog posting can show evidence that they are real Syrians. The deal is, the alibi, is that they afraid of persecution by Assad, hog wash, they afraid of discovery that their names are in fact Ehud, Walter, Wendy, Sagi, Abdul Turk, Ashamed Akhmed Albadawi.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:12 pm


zoo said:

A new customer for Russia weapons… Iraq

Iraq to purchase air defense from Russia

Iraq’s acting defense minister is in Russia negotiating the purchase of air surveillance equipment to help Iraq rebuild its crippled military defenses, a lawmaker said Aug. 2.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:13 pm



Syrianization of Lebanon (1.975 – 2.005)
Lebanonization of Irak (2.005 – 2.011)
Irakization of Syria (2.011 – ? )

Let’s hope it is just words games for perverse minds.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:15 pm


zoo said:

Ban scolds world powers on Syria….

UN chief Ban Ki-moon told world powers on Friday they must overcome their rivalries to put an end to the “proxy war” in Syria, as deadly fighting raged in Damascus and the country’s second city Aleppo.

Syria strongly opposed the resolution and its UN envoy, Bashar Jafaari, accused Saudi Arabia, Qatar and other Gulf states of arming rebel groups. The resolution itself would have “no impact whatsoever”.

On a personal note, the ambassador said he and his family had been the target of death threats.

“There have been several threats of murder against me and various Syrian diplomats from sites that exist in Saudi Arabia and Qatar and the United States,” he told the General Assembly.

The head of the opposition Syrian National Council said the resolution showed that the Assad regime has lost legitimacy.

“This vote confirms that … the international community does not believe in its legitimacy anymore,” Abdel Basset Sayda told a news conference in Iraqi Kurdistan.

He also said Syrian rebels would not pull out of Aleppo. “The Free (Syrian) Army did not withdraw, and will not withdraw from Aleppo, and we are in contact with them to provide them with supplies,” Sayda said.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:18 pm


irritated said:

Dirty foreign hands and money, just get out of Syria.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:41 pm




Thanks for your message. I take off my hat in front of your merits and efforts towards a better Syria.

It is good to see a syrian who is not afraid, but you must understand that you have already lost what you had in Syria and have nothing left to lose. While “we” have still our homes and bussinesses there and any time soon we will have to go back and daily work and live.

I have family, friends and bussiness partners inside Syria and in neighbouring countries (with syrian moukbaraat informers all around) and I have not any right to put their lives, status or properties in danger.

I agree with you that Assad regime is uncapable of tracking us now because of their nightmares with FSA but you never know what could happen in the future. If Assad Mafia prevails repression would get a dimension never seen before and consequences would be tremendous for all of us.

I hope we all can meet one day at Damascus to celebrate a new Syria and then only then we will really know who we are and why we hide our identities.

Regarding the question of arabs and foreigners, we can discuss it then. Maybe you can change your mind.

As per you view about today’s syrians, just think that today Syria is very different from Syria you left behind. Syria is not Damascus. You should consider that half of the syrians are 23 years old and below and that ‘arabs and peasants from the rural areas and stepes, are probably more near to the old idea of syrians you left behind. So you should avoid insulting the human base of Syria which indeniably is ‘Arab and Muslim and under 23… At the end not you and me but they will build future Syria.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:42 pm




Do you refer to “dirty” Iranian and Russian hands and money to be replaced by Rami Makhlouf “clean” money on Bashar and Maher “clean” hands ?

August 3rd, 2012, 6:47 pm


Syrialover said:

#351 Aldendeshe

CC Sandro Leowe

Yes, you are very honest – you reveal a lot about yourself every time you post here (maybe more than you seem to realise).

But this rudeness to others here is really starting to annoy me.

In the post above you are stating that you quit Syria for a better life 42 years ago and have not gone back or invested anything there. Fine.

But you are also making it clear that you have zero close connection with anyone currently inside Syria or in unwilling exile.

Otherwise you would not be so amazingly ignorant and dismissive about the need to be very careful about public comments on Syria if you have people inside there.

It’s long been necessary to be guarded what you say on the phone and online, or in conversation with others well before the crisis. Many have learnt very frightening lessons from this, which you appear to have no idea about.

The Assad regime has not been running 15 different security services for nothing.

I don’t doubt you have strong emotional and idealistic feelings about Syria. But your obvious lack of understanding and respect for those who are living the real situation and whose present and future is invested in Syria (as opposed to a very distant past) is extremely annoying, to put it very politely.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:52 pm


Aldendeshe said:


Save you breath, I don’t giva a damm. We are a blast from the past, before Syria moving forward it needs to take care of the past.

August 3rd, 2012, 6:58 pm


Aldendeshe said:

I still don’t belive you are Syrian. I counted Six on this blog that I am sure they are.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:00 pm



360. Syrialover

I totally agree with you. We have been living permanently under fear and one cannot talk about real Syria without knowing the total paranoia about control of phone conversations, e-mails, etc. We have learnt to be very carefull about the security services.

I have a friend who in 2.007 (let’s call it “the golden years of Assad”) received an e-mail with a pic of her girlfriend living abroad in top-less at the beach. He was called to the Moukhabaraat Hq to declare about it. It sounds as a joke but he did not enjoy that time too much.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:01 pm


zoo said:

معركة حلب: الدولة ضمنت النتائج لكن لماذا اختلفت عن مشق؟
الكاتب العميد د. أمين محمد حطيط

August 3rd, 2012, 7:02 pm


Tara said:


Thank you for #351. This is the best piece of news I read today.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:05 pm


Syrialover said:

358. Sandro Loewe

You answered Aldendeshe more graciously and kinder than he deserved.

He is lucky he can talk tough about the old days and his life is so divorced from Syria he does not feel desperate about the suffering, sick with anxiety about family and friends, and worried about livelihood and property.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:06 pm


Amjad said:

“Dirty foreign hands and money, just get out of Syria.”

Hey Russia and Iran, Irritated is talking to you….

August 3rd, 2012, 7:07 pm




I have the feeling, when I read your tone, that if SNP had taken the power instead of the Baath Party maybe you would be ordering now the bombing of Aleppo… Politics corrupt so much… so maybe it was good for your personal development to have been ousted from Syria.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:08 pm


Syrialover said:

Some very useful reminders here. Some people have instant-dissolving memories about what happened.

Quote: “The carrying of weapons was a reaction, not an action. We hoped that we would never come to a stage in the revolution where we were forced to carry the weapons, but we had to.”

How ‘pro-regime’ Aleppo became one of Syria’s biggest battlegrounds

Aleppo was long regarded as immune to the uprising sweeping the rest of Syria, but the deaths of several students helped galvanize a dormant opposition.

Aleppo, Syria’s most populous city, had been labelled a “pro-regime” bastion, immune to the pull of Syria’s 17-month uprising. That reputation and aggressive security forces kept the revolution at bay – until students were killed in a raid in early May.

Who overcame the hurdles of fear to make that unlikely opposition trajectory happen – and how?

“We didn’t live in a country for 50 years, we lived in a kingdom of fear,” Abu Thaier, a leader of the secret Revolutionary Council in Aleppo, told the Monitor during a recent three-day visit to the rebel-held Salaheddin district.

“At the beginning in Aleppo, we had many difficulties. At first we could get only 50 people to go to demonstrations, and we know if 50 come, then 300 security forces will be waiting for us.”
But the anti-regime blood, it turned out, beat as strongly here as anywhere else in Syria, at least among activists determined to bring change.

Regime intimidation backfires

“We started with 50 people, but now 1,000 protesters come out, in many neighborhoods, so we are optimistic,” says one student activist wanted by the security forces, who gave his name as Ahmad Saad. He noted that 20 smaller demonstrations the day before had been the last before shelling kept people at home.

“When we started the revolution in Aleppo, we were very afraid for our families – if they can’t reach activists, they reach others,” Mr. Saad says.

That price has been high, and continues to be.

“We lost many educated people in this revolution, very smart people, and many were arrested and not released,” says Saad, a tall young man with indistinguishable looks that have helped him evade capture, or worse. “They go after you personally; I suffered very much for this,” says Saad. Six of his friends have been killed; three of them medical students tortured and burned for assisting wounded demonstrators.

Non-violent ideals fall short on the ground

“One of our dreams early on was to have a revolution like Egypt, with peaceful demonstrations that would be protected by the army – this was our dream,” Saad says.

But the tactics of non-violence espoused by academics like former Harvard University professor Gene Sharp – whose work has been used to inspire and instruct non-violent regime changers around the world – did not apply so easily in Syria, activists found.

“We started with peaceful demonstrations and continued for almost 10 months, but when you see your children, your wife and your mother slaughtered and raped, what can you do?” says Abu Thaier.

“Can you really stand there and say, ‘I won’t be armed’?” he asks. “The carrying of weapons was a reaction, not an action. We hoped that we would never come to a stage in the revolution where we were forced to carry the weapons, but we had to.

“The Syrian regime has been working all these years to crush anything to do with knowledge, thinking and thought,” says Abu Thaier.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:16 pm


Tara said:


مشان ما تاخُد على خاطرك, I gave you the second thumb up for #357. When I get to my cell phone, I’ll see if I can give you another “like” . Will do this until your obsession with the like/dislike system fades away…

August 3rd, 2012, 7:21 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Aldendeshe’s rude attitude and arrogance is a reflection of the disgusting and despicable political movement that he represents and speaks for, the SSNP. I’m not sad over the news that the Syrians kicked you out. Stay out, you bloody Fascists.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:43 pm


Son of Damascus said:


I don’t think SNP has anything remotely to do with SSNP. While I don’t care for either one, one actually exists beyonds someones wild imagination.

Btw I always wondered whats up with the double full stops at the end of your posts?

August 3rd, 2012, 7:52 pm


omen said:

a comment on the summary execution of shabiha story:

By not sparing the Barri’s because they were Sunnis, the FSA proved it is not a sectarian militia.

August 3rd, 2012, 7:59 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:


I believe he meant the SSNP. What is SNP in regard to Syria? I don’t know of any SNP political party. Let the inventor of the “anti gravity vehicle” clarify this.

The second full stop is for decoration. Has no other meaning.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:05 pm


Aldendeshe said:

Here are the few real Syrians on this blog:

Syria No Kandahar

There maybe one or two more but they are not the one posting regularly here.


August 3rd, 2012, 8:05 pm


Uzair8 said:

Spare a thought for a certain First Lady who will be marking an upcoming birthday* while her home city is pounded by her husband.

* Not many days apart from my own.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:07 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

I am a (greater) Syrian too.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:09 pm


Aldendeshe said:


You are a hole in the sand country (literally, and very low among the nations physically, geographically and morally) with fraudulent, made up history, one that is holding the world record for genocide against people of Palestine. Show me one artifact dug up in Palestine for the past 1000 years that can prove that you ever had a king, a state, a seal, none ZILTCH. The only one you can show is those produced by ODED GOLAN.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:21 pm


Syrialover said:

# 375. Aldendeshe

Glad to see you aggressively and strangely putting yourself out there on your funny list as “a real Syrian”, despite admitting forgotten Arabic and no close connections, links or investments in the country. And who early chose to quit the place to find somewhere better.

What about the nationality and country you have been living in for the last 2/3rds of your life? Are you a “real (name country)” as well?

August 3rd, 2012, 8:22 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:


You are so full of inferior second class conspiracy theories. I don’t feel I have to prove any thing to you. Believe in what you choose to believe.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:29 pm


Son of Damascus said:


Well if Amir bothered to read your link @ 157 he would have “proof” that Jews existed in the region because your link claims that the House of Saud are actually Jews…

In reality, the Arabian peninsula has been occupied since the last 200 plus years by a grand orthodox Jewish alliance in the garb of Islam. But their secret loyalty and affections are still firmly grounded within their roots. What a pretty story behind the Saud / Wahab treachery, duping 1.3 billion Muslims around the world and their sincere pact of ‘brotherhood’ with the White House, Pentagon and 10 Downing Street.

Your logic is a little bit confusing to say the least, do Jews exists in the region or not?

August 3rd, 2012, 8:38 pm


Aldendeshe said:


Don’t dodge my request, it is very, very, very simple:
Just (1) ONE, UNO, SINGLE, evidence of kingship, seal, coin, correspondence, treaty, anything, just ONE that is not produced by ODED GOLAN.

Are you not embarrassed of that? Are not your people feel humiliated that the entire worlds is asking Jews to produce that ONE single evidence, and yet for 100 years of digging you could not come up with ONE single evidence. Common, F****K even Mauritania, Seashell Island, Tuvalu, the aborigine of Australia can show some sort of a National archive, What do you have beyond unmarked earth ware of Ancient Palestinian kitchenware, broken pottery, that you claim as evidence.

As Syrian I can present to you FEW MILLIONS undisputable evidence. GOT IT, now go tell that to your Semite buddies in Arabia that. You see, you have not been to any museum in the World, should you have been, you will see our history. But, rarely, you will see a Jewish or Israeli display, other than HOLOW fairytales.

August 3rd, 2012, 8:51 pm


Friend in America said:

Aldendeshe @ 352
A basic principle of internet blogs is that the participants do not, and are not required, to reveal their own names or personal information. I have been a particiant on this site for over 5 years and my estimate this principle has been honored about 98% of the time. It is possible often to discern a participant’s attitude by what is written but that does not reveal any personal information. One can even identify a participant as from the Ministry of Information but not his real name. So please do not be disappointed if few, possibly none, do not expose themselves.
Your list of “true Syrans” is far short. Many of them in Syria today do not dare communicate here but can be contacted by other means. A couple or more have been killed in the fighting or by the secret police.
For myself I am an analyist of mid east affairs and I live very near an academic community and I am not Syrian although I do have Syrian and Lebanones American friends. But, I am not going to tell you my name or where I live.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:01 pm


Ghufran said:

أعلنت كتائب “جبهة النصرة” أولى ساعات صباح اليوم السبت أنها قامت بإعدام الإعلامي السوري “محمد السعيد” والذي اختطف قبل خمسة عشر يوماً في منطقة “جديدة عرطوز” بدمشق.
وقال التنظيم الذي يعد أحد فصائل تنظيم القاعدة في بيان له إن “الحربَ التي أعلنها النظامُ على سوريا وأهلها قد طالتْ كلَّ شيءٍ، وقد استخدمَ فيها كلَّ شي، ومما استخدمه إعلامُ الدولة الذي دفع الناس ثمنَ معداته، وكلفة أبنيته، وفواتير استمراره، ومايزالون يدفعون”.
وأضاف البيان: “كنّا قد حذرنا سابقاً ألا مكان في الوسط لأحدٍ، فلم يقبل النظامُ بطاغوته ذلك، ولن يقبل أهل الجهاد بوضوح طريقهم وقوةِ يقينهم ذلك أيضاً، فعلى الجميع أن يقرر أي الفئتين يختار، إلى وأيّ الفريقين ينتسب؟ وليكن الموقفُ أمام الله تعالى هو الدافع لهذا الاختيار، ومن فضل الله تعالى على المجاهدين في جبهة النّصرة، تمكّن أبطال الغوطة الغربية من أسر الشبيح الإعلامي: محمد السعيد بتاريخ: 19 – 7– 2012 وتم قتله بعد التحقيق معه”.
وكان “السعيد” اختطف قبل خسمة عشر يوماً على يد مسلحين مجهولين في جديدة عرطوز واقتادوه إلى مكان مجهول.
يذكر أن “محمد السعيد” كان صوتاً رئيسياً لمعظم الأفلام الوثائقية التي أنتجها التلفزيون السوري وعدد كبير من المحطات العربية منها “الجزيرة الوثائقية، وناشيونال جيوغرافيك”، وكان يعمل مذيعاً في القناة الفضائية السورية ومقدماً لبرنامج “حديث البلد” سابقاً.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:01 pm


Syrialover said:

Getting back to what matters…

The Aleppo life-saver calling for weapons to save lives

‘You can only patch up people for so long. Most of the seriously injured we can’t save. The only way to end this is to defeat Assad’

August 3rd, 2012, 9:14 pm


Aldendeshe said:


That above said Amir, I say the same to the Kurds of Syria. I Invite you both mutants of Syrian nation with your rich fairytales, folklore and unique language to join us in making a GREATER SYRIAN NATION. One that all can be proud of its history, from the Euphrates to the Red Sea. Now you can walk into a National Museum in any world capital and see your history and civilization and be proud to be part of it. You need not to feel inferior, wage wars on your neighbors to prove your genuine bull s**t and you don’t need Oded Golan anymore, he will move to New York to fabricate One Eyed Pyramids for the RA KA PHERE 10 KINGDOMS coming soon. Jews already escaped from Samiramis Kingdom, why are you going back to it for help?

August 3rd, 2012, 9:15 pm


Syrian Natonalist Party said:

Watch the complete UN assembly on the draft resolution on Syria

شيء مضحك مهزول لايهتم به الا المهزولين

August 3rd, 2012, 9:21 pm


Uzair8 said:

Where’s Bruno?

He would have enjoyed the recent thumbs up/dn boon.

Actually his absence in recent days is probably a good thing. Don’t know how his sensitive heart would have coped with it.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:23 pm


irritated said:

Maybe the Palestinians in Syria should flee to successful Turkey where their future will be much brighter than in economically ruined Syria.
Generous and pro-Palestinian Erdogan should make that offer to the Palestinians that are now being targeted in their Syrian refugee camps.
An other alternative is Qatar that badly needs more population.

It is clear that Syria will not be able to afford to keep refugees in its land after the crisis stops.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:25 pm


zoo said:

Manaf again in Turkey. Is he the Turkish candidate for the elusive transitional government?

Fugitive Syria chief in talks with Turkey

Senior Syrian defector Brigadier Gen. Manaf Tlass was again in Ankara on Aug. 3, in order to hold an unannounced meeting with a senior foreign ministry official.

Following his quick visit on July 26, the latest meeting was the second time Tlass had visited Ankara, as part of his efforts to obtain a role in the post-Assad era in Syria.

Tlass, who flew to Ankara from Istanbul late on Aug. 3 afternoon, held a lengthy meeting at the foreign ministry headquarters, the Daily News has learned from a reliable source.

Speaking on condition of anonymity following the meeting, a senior diplomat confirmed that Tlass had met with a senior foreign ministry official. The source, however, declined to give the name of this senior official. The same diplomat also declined to either confirm or deny whether Tlass would also meet with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu later in the day.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:31 pm


zoo said:

Turkish Opposition; Davutoglu’s foreign policy is a failure

Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu is the most helpless foreign minister Turkey has ever had, Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu said Aug. 3.

Ankara’s Syria policy is seriously flawed, Kılıçdaroğlu said. “If a country builds its foreign policy around another country’s interests, this is a problem.”

“On what issue has Davutoğlu been successful?” Kılıçdaroğlu asked. “On which foreign policy issues has he succeeded? On Syria? On Iraq or Iran? On Kürecik, Malatya [where NATO has a radar station]? About Greek Cyprus? [Turkish foreign policy] is a total failure and all of these failures have been undersigned by Davutoğlu,” he said.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:33 pm


Syrialover said:

#389 Uzair8

Let sleeping dogs lie. Please!

This is an entertainment place for him, a blog and topic he only recently discovered. He comes here to say wild things and get attention.

He makes a nuisance of himself on other blogs too, and let slip that his game has been rejected and exposed there. SC could learn from those other sites.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:39 pm


zoo said:

The violent and sectarian excesses of the opposition are repelling increased number of former supporters

Syria’s Crumbling Pluralism
Published: August 3, 2012

DAMASCUS — The day begins here with the call to prayer and ends with the roar of gunfire. Syria’s pluralistic society, which once rose above sectarian identity in a region often characterized by a homicidal assertion of religious belief, is now faced with civil disintegration and ethnic cleansing.

In Bab Touma, the Christian quarter of the old city, the magnificently restored Ottoman mansions housing many of the hotels that only two years ago overflowed with Western tourists have become temporary sanctuaries for Syrian minorities fleeing their homes and cities.

As Saudi Arabian arms and money bolster the opposition, the 80,000 Christians who’ve been “cleansed” from their homes in Hamidiya and Bustan al-Diwan in Homs Province in March by the Free Syrian Army have gradually given up the prospect of ever returning home.

The rebels’ conduct has prompted at least some Sunnis who had supported the rebels and once-wavering Syrians to pledge renewed loyalty to Assad. Many who once regarded the regime as a kleptocracy now view it as the best guarantor of Syria’s endangered pluralism.

…Most Syrians, regardless of their faith, want the power to change their government. But the armed groups that have seized control of the rebellion, now contaminated with Al Qaeda fighters and corrupted by Saudi money, have repelled many people.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:40 pm


Aldendeshe said:

383. Friend in Americasaid:


You blog name does not insinuate that you are Syrian. You are not falsely presenting yourself, stating that you are Syrian and Impostering such deceptively, so you can deceive, and present, or imply a specific majority position for the plotters and Genocidal Zionist murderers, or whip the blog for ulterior currents and actions, so that not suspecting readers can ascertain a false reality of the situation, one that befit the imposters goals. That is a big difference. Even though, on this kind of blog, it should be mandatory to have real internet id/name in my opinion. This is a professional blog by Middle East Educators, I see no reason why someone needs to hide behind a name. Never the less, as long as you are stating who you are honestly, no one care if you are not Syrian. From professional point of view, who you are on this kind of blog, does carry weight, whether weight upon your comment, or weight to the comment by the fact we know who you are. There is no problem with Amir in Tel Aviv, for example. He stated he is in the Israeli army, we know who is without his real name and talk to him without any problem.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:42 pm


zoo said:

Syria and the Bosnia Fallacy

Nikolas K. Gvosdev|
August 3, 2012

Some believe that in the event of Assad’s death (or a significant weakening of his power), different groups in Syria might reach out to the opposition to discuss a transition of power. One easily could envision a future meeting in Istanbul that would lay the groundwork for replacing the current Syrian Republic with a Syrian Union, based on resurrecting some of the entities that existed during the first part of the French mandate (1920–1936), including separate Alawite and Druze states as well as regional cantons based on Aleppo and Damascus.

Saudi Arabia helped broker an end to the devastating civil war in Lebanon with the Taif Accords in 1989; in principle, a similar agreement, which would recognize Sunni ascendancy in Syria but institutionalize a series of protections for other groups, could be viable and in line with stated Saudi interests and concerns.

A Lisbon-style agreement such as the initial plan for Bosnia might not satisfy the Sunni majority—which might hope to exercise control over all of Syria based simply on sheer numbers—and minorities might have to accept smaller cantons and less influence in a post-Assad Syria. But given that similar results emerged in places such as Bosnia and Iraq only after years of fighting, might not Syrians themselves be willing to accept such compromises, albeit reluctantly?

The success of any such agreement also would require the outside powers—including the West, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States—to support such a process. If a deal can be facilitated along these lines—however imperfect it may be—then it may be possible to minimize the problems that inevitably will arise in a post-Assad Syria.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:44 pm


Ghufran said:

قال القيادي العراقي في المجلس الأعلى الإسلامي باقر جبر الزبيدي، إن نحو 4000 مقاتل من حزب العمال الكردستاني يتم نقلهم إلى مناطق شمال القامشلي قرب الحدود التركية، مرجحاً أن تتخذ تركيا من ذلك ذريعة للتدخل عسكرياً.
وخلال ندوة عقدت يوم أمس الخميس 2 آب/ أغسطس قال الزبيدي إن المقاتلين مدربون بشكل جيد.

August 3rd, 2012, 9:50 pm


Mick said:

Andrew Tabler and U.S. policy (and those that love him)

Andrew Tabler in April 2011:

Either you get back the Golan Heights, or you keep supporting Hezbollah — but not both. So far those well-intentioned efforts have not broken the gridlock: Israel watches Assad’s transfer of weapons to Hezbollah, doubts his peaceful intentions, and refuses to make the risky political decision to rejoin talks.,1

So we told Syria ditch Hizballah and he said no. And we then we got pissed. How many Syrians have died since?

Since then, he’s pretty much been running U.S. policy on Syria. He is quoted in the U.S. media. He was on CNN today.

Oh the U.S. plays its little games about not ‘directly’ supporting the Salafists, but it sure hasn’t put any pressure on them. In fact, it has spent the last two days spinning the Berri massacre as justifiable so it can continue to support them.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:11 pm


Aldendeshe said:

Said it all, I wanted be more hurtful to Amir, but I taken it easy on him. As to the Agents, LOL, LOOOSERS, Go fight for real will ya, in Aleppo, will see the outcome next week, or should I say the humiliating routing? Time now for Ice Skating, have a gorgeous blond for a trainer, she is 2 times U.S. Champion, lovely gal. Don’t laugh you Middle Easterners, this is the only place I don’t see Halloween customs, and have a good friend that we argue technology effectiveness with on ice, he was for a decade working at Los Alamos Lab, he is in his 70’s and have skated for performances for the Queen of England and the Pope, never believed him until seen the pictures. He does really good skating routine, very modern. He is going to teach me fencing when I can spare the time. Maybe I should quite this blog and make sometime for that.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:16 pm


Tara said:

Russia voted “no” on Friday along with China, Syria, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Belarus, Bolivia, Nicaragua, Burma, Zimbabwe and Venezuela. Among those states abstaining were India and Pakistan.

Mr Churkin told the UN that the Saudi-drafted resolution concealed “blatant support for the armed opposition”.

He said his country regretted the resolution which “only aggravates confrontational approaches to the resolution of the Syrian crisis, doing nothing to facilitate dialogue between the parties”.

It was “written as if no armed opposition existed at all”, he added.
Susan Rice, the US envoy at the UN, welcomed the passing of the resolution. The UN General Assembly “sent a strong message today: the overwhelming majority of nations stand with the people of Syria”, she wrote on Twitter.

August 3rd, 2012, 10:34 pm


Syrialover said:

Mick #398 said:

“[the US] has spent the last two days spinning the Berri massacre as justifiable”

They don’t have to bother – anyone from Aleppo can tell you what an out of control violent criminal outfit the Berris were.

Robbing, killing and terrorizing people with regime approval. They hardly fit into any system, like outlaw warlords.

They would have landed on death row straight away under a legitimate government.

August 3rd, 2012, 11:43 pm


omen said:

398. MICK said: Since then, he’s pretty much been running U.S. policy on Syria.

ha. i wish. tabler advocated arming the rebels early on.

obama inc. not only ignored the advice, he ran counter to it. he and clinton urged other countries not to arm the rebels.

August 4th, 2012, 2:07 am



I tried to open the link to Amal Hanano’s piece, The Womb of Murder thar appeared recently in alayyam, but I received a message ‘server not found’. It appears there could be a deliberate attempt by regimists to conceal the information once again as Hafez did 47 years ago.

This is a very important historical eyewitness account of events that convey messages of existential importance as it relates to human destiny, fate and social upheavals and struggles. It will become a milestone to remember for generations to come, so that those who come after us will try to avoid the pitfalls of those who preceded them.

I made a search and found another link and stored a copy of the article. The new link is at

I suggest you do likewise and preserve a copy from this link for your posterity to keep the lesson alive, before another attempt is made to shut down the new link(s).

August 4th, 2012, 2:34 am


irritated said:

370. Tara

Thanks for your generosity but after thinking a bit, I decided that as long as you get any thumb, it means the post was read or at least acknowledged and finally that’s what counts.

August 4th, 2012, 10:39 am


omen said:

contrary to conventional wisdom, during ancient rome, an emperor giving a thumbs up indicated the gladiator’s performance disappointed and this was a signal that he was to be slain and sent to heaven.

a thumbs down meant you were spared.

August 4th, 2012, 5:26 pm


Fawaz alfawaz said:

I agree largely with Landis , he already gave a hint at the very beginning of the uprising (when it was civil) when he mentioned Syria can be worse than Afghanistan .But more important it tells you about his mantle and the people around him : the safety of the state is of secondary order to him and people of his elk .There. Is probably not much surprise there .
The implication are significant though at more than one levels :
– For one the imperative is to safe the state before fracturing , that will happen only through a military coup , this can happen only once 2/ 3 key Alawite officers either persuaded ( unlikely) or eliminated similarly to the incident few. Weeks ago .
– I am aware of the intractable insecurity of the Alawite community , yet they cannot be all share the narccistoc view Assad Makhlouf seem to practice habitually .
– Although it has been advertised with some justification that the Sunnis in the military are subservient to their Alawite masters , it is a bit difficult to accept that they share the same wishes for the fracturing the State .
– Lastly , it is difficult to maintain discipline among even criminal gangs ( this is not really much different ) once the writings on the Wall , the timing is always hard to call ., related but separate it is really difficult to imply that the Syrians will act collectively similarly like the Iraqis or the Lebanese .

Riyadh based columnist

August 10th, 2012, 10:19 pm


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