Syrian Opposition Meeting in Antalya: Day Two

Two friends have given feedback on the second day of the Syrian Opposition meeting in Antalya.

Syria: Opposition Drafts Declaration in Antalya

Both were impressed by the constructive nature of the second day. George Washington was not born, they conceded, but hard decisions were made.

The Muslim Brothers and Islamists were under intense pressure to accept the notion of a secular government where religion and state would be separate. They resisted this most of the day but ultimately conceded at the eleventh hour. We do not have the statement or wording on this “secular” statement. But the MB accepted to not contest the separation of state and religion in the conference statement. I will publish as soon as I can get the wording of the conference statement.

According to some, Amr al-Azm (son of Sadiq) Amr Miqdad (presumably from the large Deraa family), and Muhammad al-Abdullah all played an important role in mediating and facilitating the discussion. They worked very hard to get the secular statement accepted.

The young guys were impressive. “Anyone in Damascus who doesn’t take these guys seriously is stupid,” my source explained. They are no where near where they should be, but for a first meeting this was impressive.” There were many arguments between the young, new leaders and the old, established leaders who have been in exile for decades. The young leaders had no patience for the committees and bureaucracy of the older generation. They are getting communication lines in place, developing networks between towns and did not have time for the endless haggling of the older generation.

About 70 Kurds showed up which surprised everyone. Also the number of tribal leaders was impressive. They were wearing heir dish dashers and kafiyyas.

“People have just had enough of being treated like shit. They want to be treated like real human beings – this was what it was all about,” one person explained. They have given up on talking with the regime. They don’t want the Assad family anymore.

Another important accomplishment was the establishment of an executive board and an election. They voted on a 31 member executive body, nine of whom will be full time. Two different lists of 31 people were presented, then they voted  on which of the two lists would be picked. There was a lot of argument about who would be on the lists. It looks like they have agree on the people.

When the National Salvation Front was constructed in 2006, ex-V.P. Abdal Halim Khaddam waltzed in and took charge without a proper election. It was not a democratic opposition. At the very least, this opposition effort is proceeding by some sort of democratic procedure and there are elections.

Another aspect of the meeting that people liked was that the organizers of the conference excluded Farid Ghadary, Abdal Halim Khaddam, and Rifaat al-Assad because they are too tainted.  The conference came out with a statement refusing foreign intervention and proclaiming the integrity and inviolability of Syria’s boarders. “Everything must be done to preserve Syria’s unity and territorial integrity,” their statement read.

“I want those people in Damascus to feel threatened,” said one friend. “This meeting is more impressive than anything the Baath has accomplished in the last 40 years. When have they ever had a real election? This is a start. There was a real young group of people working on the road to Damascus”

They issued a statement that Alawis should feel safe. No group would be targeted.

The Antalya group will start their own Facebook page tomorrow.


Syria’s opposition has called on President Bashar al-Assad to resign immediately and hand over power to Farouk al-Sharaa, vice-president, to secure the country’s transition to democracy, writes Abigail Fielding-Smith in Beirut.

Opposition members meeting in Turkey rejected foreign intervention in the effort to end Mr Assad’s rule, and stressed the movement did not “aim to undermine any sect”.

“The delegates have committed to the demands of the Syrian people to bring down the regime and support the people’s revolution for freedom and dignity,” a statement issued by the conference said.

The conference – an unprecedented meeting of disparate activists from inside and outside Syria – also elected a 31-member consultative council to support the uprising, which started two and a half months ago.

Separately, Hillary Clinton, US secretary of state, on Thursday called on the international community to take tougher action on the Syrian authorities’ repression of the protests, urging countries to “get on the right side of history”.

Russia and China have objected to a draft UN Security Council resolution condemning the crackdown in Syria, which Human Rights Watch has said could have involved “crimes against humanity”.

Syrian opposition tell Assad to quit immediately
AFP, Thursday, June 02, 2011

Syrian opposition groups called Thursday for President Bashar al-Assad’s immediate resignation, in a joint declaration at the end of a two-day meeting in Turkey.

The statement, read out in the Mediterranean resort of Antalya, urged the “immediate resignation of President Bashar al-Assad from all functions he occupies.”

It urged the holding of “parliamentary and presidential elections within a period that will not exceed one year” following Assad’s resignation.

The dissidents vowed “to do whatever it is up to them to bring down the regime” in Syria, welcoming the declaration with applause.

Fears over crackdown

UN genocide prevention experts warned the Syrian authorities Thursday over “apparently systematic and deliberate attacks” on unarmed civilians.

Putting new UN pressure on President Bashar al-Assad’s regime over his crackdown, UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon’s special advisors on prevention of genocide and responsibility to protect civilian populations said they were “gravely concerned” at the growing death toll from the “violent suppression” of protests.

“We are particularly alarmed at the apparently systematic and deliberate attacks by police, military, and other security forces against unarmed civilians taking part in the last two months of protests,” said the advisors Francis Deng and Edward Luck.

“The systematic and widespread attacks that are alleged to have taken place in Syria appear primarily to have targeted the civilian population,” they said in a joint statement.

“This underscores the need for an independent, thorough, and objective investigation into all alleged violations of international human rights law,” the experts said.

Syria has refused to let a UN human rights mission into the country to investigate the crackdown which is said to have left hundreds dead. The UN Security Council is negotiating a resolution which would condemn the violence.

Syria: Opposition Drafts Declaration in Antalya
by Jillian York

Just a day after President Bashar Assad announced a general amnesty for political prisoners, a varied group of Syrian opposition members are meeting to create what one report referred to as a “‘roadmap’ for a peaceful and democratic transition in Syria.” The group is comprised mostly of exiles, including members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Syrian-American academic Dr. Mohja Kahf, a professor at the University of Arkansas, is live-tweeting the event, which is taking place at a resort in Antalya, Turkey.

Syrians attend the Antalya conference, flanked by images of Syrian martyrs

Late Wednesday, she wrote of the event: “Antalya:This is not your daddy’s old opposition conference #Syria New groupings forming, young faces,fresh energies.”

Dr. Kahf also tweeted that the members of the meeting would be holding a day-long hunger strike in solidarity with their fellow Syrians.

Also on Twitter, @abulyas was quick to point out that the conference was not an “opposition conference,” noting:

“#Antalya conf isn’t “opposition” conf. It brought many independent Syrians from the world united in purpose to end Syrian regime #march15″

Though the conference attendees are united in their cause, the conference has not been without its disagreements. Dr. Kahf noted a conversation she witnessed in the hotel lobby:

“Younger generation that is carrying this rev:don’t care abt old lines of diffs:Ikhwan,secularists” -lobby conversation Antalya conf #Syria.”

An article in NOW! Lebanon notes a young/old divide as well. There have also been reports that some Syrian opposition members refused to attend the conference, as well as some expressions of disappointment on Twitter from Syrians in the country.

LA Times – — Molly Hennessy-Fiske in Cairo

Opposition leaders have been meeting for the past two days in Antalya, Turkey, to support the anti-government uprising in Syria. At the end of the conference Thursday, they issued their demands.

“The delegates have committed to the demands of the Syrian people to bring down the regime and support the people’s revolution for freedom and dignity,” said the statement issued by 300 pro-democracy activists and opposition leaders.

On Thursday, as activists conducted workshops on social networking and drafted their demands in a resort hotel, scores of Assad supporters gathered outside, some wearing T-shirts featuring a picture of the embattled president.

“We love Bashar,” they chanted on CNN.

Turkish police could be seen out in force in Antalya, ensuring that several hundred pro-government demonstrators could not reach the conference.

“What would post-Assad Syria look like? That’s the $50-million question,” Amr Al Azm, who helped draft the opposition statement, told CNN. “We’ve been able to begin to address what the alternative would like like … we’ve provided a road map,” said Al Azm, a Syrian American history professor at Shawnee State University in Ohio who was in Turkey on Thursday.

He is an unlikely opposition leader. Until March, he was a senior consultant on a project headed by Assad’s wife, Asma, that was supposed to reform Syria’s culture ministry.

“What changed for me was the violence, the unprecedented level of violence that seemed random and almost uncontrolled,” Al Azm told CNN. “There are people that I actually know that have had their fingernails pulled out.”

Large anti-government protests were expected again in Syria on Friday after prayers.

Protests close in on divided Damascus
By an FT reporter, June 2 2011 19:10 | Financial Times

In the affluent neighbourhoods of central Damascus, the crackdown on Syria’s anti-government protests feels far away.

Young Damascenes sit in western-style cafés in Shaalan, drink Italian coffee, smoke traditional water pipes and casually browse the internet on their laptops. “There is no problem here,” is a common refrain among locals. “It will all be over in one or two months.”

The centre of the Syrian capital has, along with the business city of Aleppo, remained relatively quiet in a more than two-month uprising against the regime of Bashar al-Assad, president.

Outside of Damascus, brutal attacks have escalated. Syrian forces killed at least 13 civilians in the town of Rastan on Thursday, human rights campaigners told Reuters, raising the death toll in the central province of Homs this week to at least 56 civilians.

Even within the relatively calm capital, signs of tension are everywhere.

Driving through the city’s central Merjeh Square on a Friday, the usual day of pro-democracy protests, security men loiter on the street corners, dressed in riot gear and carrying batons. Plain-clothed intelligence men – the Mukhabarat – wait in buses with clubs and guns.

Others, drawn from the state’s large civil service, are sent to the city’s mosques to mix with worshippers and shout pro-regime slogans at the end of Friday prayers. More wait outside, ready to disperse any demonstrations as soon as they begin.

The regime is anxious to make sure protests do not spread to the capital. The middle classes and business community have benefited from the limited economic reforms introduced by Mr Assad since he took over in 2000 and still prefer stability, even if under a repressive regime.

“The regime knows that if they lose Damascus they are finished,” says Samir, a 30-year-old protester in the capital, who speaks in hushed tones in a quiet café. Mobile phones are switched off in case they are bugged and suspicious glances are cast at men sitting on neighbouring tables.

But the regime may already be too late. Barely half a mile from the city centre, thousands of people have taken to the streets in the middle class district of Midan every Friday since early April. “People from all walks of life and from all parts of the city are coming to Midan to protest,” says Samir. Youths and middle class doctors mix with Midan locals, he says, and the crackdown elsewhere in the city means numbers in Midan are growing…..

Business reluctant to cut loose from Assad
By Najmeh Bozorgmehr in Beirut June 2 2011 20:05 | Financial Times

The Syrian business community’s passive approach to the popular protest movement against the ruling Ba’ath party is depriving the uprising of crucial support that could help secure the overthrow of the regime, analysts say.

Many assert that as long as businessmen in Aleppo and Damascus, the industrial and commercial hubs, do not join the opposition the regime will continue to believe it will survive with a brutal crackdown.

“The . . . business community has long been attached to the regime because there aren’t lots of economic opportunities outside the government,” said Marcus Marktanner, a professor of economics at the American University of Beirut.

The limited economic reforms introduced since Bashar al-Assad inherited power from his father in 2000 have not radically changed the socialist-style economy, burdened by a complex bureaucracy and laws unfriendly to foreign investment.

But businesses involved in textiles – the country’s leading industry, two-thirds of which is based in Aleppo – food processing, car trading and electronics have benefited from government credits and trade privileges in recent years.

Lahcen Achy, a scholar at Carnegie Middle East Center, said the textile and garment sector had received government assistance. “They are now waiting to see what will happen and do not want to lose the regime support,” he added.

Analysts say the reforms have created an imbalance, leaving out rural areas and urban suburbs while a new wealthy class directly or indirectly linked to the regime has benefited.

The sense of deprivation has been exacerbated by an increase in global food prices and the country’s severe drought which has shrunk the share of agriculture in gross domestic product from 24.2 per cent in 2006 to 17.1 per cent in 2010, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit.

Some of the towns most hit by the drought have been bastions of pro- democracy protests, including Deraa in the south, Deir Ezzor in the east and Banias and Al-Hasakah in the north-east.

“With the increase in food prices, the Syrian emperor was seen naked,” said Mr Marktanner. “People who have serious problems in feeding their families know food prices won’t go down and the regime cannot do anything about it.”

Syrians have watched more overt signs of wealth appear in the capital and in Aleppo in the form of luxury cars and international clothing brands.

The business community has also been frustrated by the regime’s intervention in economic activities and the Assad family’s growing monopoly on big projects. One of the first places that protesters in Deraa, the flashpoint of unrest, burnt down was SyriaTel, the country’s leading mobile telecommunications company run by Rami Makhlouf, a tycoon and cousin of the president.

But businessmen still appear to value the political stability that the Assad family has brought since the 1970s. The regime’s argument that the alternative to secular rule will be Salafists, radical Sunni Muslims, seems to have worked well so far in keeping business in check.

“Syrian businessmen think a fall of the regime in Syria is closer to the Libyan or Iraq scenarios than Tunisian or Egyptian scenarios while alternatives to the status quo remain unclear,” said one analyst.

Clinton: World should toughen up on Syria
By BRADLEY KLAPPER, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States implored hesitant Arab countries and U.N. powers Russia and China to join the international condemnation of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime, saying Thursday that they would be better off “on the right side of history.”

Repeating the president’s ultimatum of last month that Assad should either lead a reform process or leave power, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said the Syrian leader was clearly blowing his chance by pressing on with a brutal crackdown on demonstrators and political opponents.

Expectations that his government can change are “if not gone, nearly run out,” she said in Washington.

Egypt’s Christians Fear Violence as Changes Embolden Islamists
The New York Times, By DAVID D. KIRKPATRICK, May 30, 2011

A surge of sectarian violence in Cairo — 24 dead, more than 200 wounded and three churches in flames since President Hosni Mubarak’s downfall — has turned Christian-Muslim tensions into one of the gravest threats to the revolution’s stability. But it is also a pivotal test of Egypt’s tolerance, pluralism and the rule of law. The revolution has empowered the majority but also opened new questions about the protection of minority rights like freedom of religion or expression as Islamist groups step forward to lay out their agendas and test their political might.

Around the region, Christians are also closely watching events in Syria, where as in Egypt Christians and other minorities received the protection of a secular dictator, Bashar al-Assad, now facing his own popular uprising.

“The Copts are the crucial test case,” said Heba Morayef, a researcher with Human Rights Watch here, adding that facing off against “societal pressures” may in some ways be ever harder than criticizing a dictator. “It is the next big battle.”

But so far, there is little encouragement in the debate over how to address the sectarian strife. Instead of searching for common ground, all sides are pointing fingers of blame while almost no one is addressing the underlying reasons for the strife, including a legal framework that treats Muslims and Christians differently.

Christians, who make up about 10 percent of the 80 million Egyptians, say the revolution has plunged them into uncharted territory. Suppressed or marginalized for six decades here, Islamists entering politics have rushed to defend an article of the Egyptian Constitution that declares Egypt a Muslim country that derives its laws from Islam. Christians and liberals say privately they abhor the provision, which was first added as a populist gesture by President Anwar el-Sadat. But the article is so popular among Muslims — and the meaning so vague — that even many liberals and Christians entering politics are reluctant to speak out against it, asking at most for slight modifications.

“Our position is that it should stay, but a clause should be added so that in personal issues non-Muslims are subject to the rules of their own religion,”….

many liberals argue the sectarian conflicts prove Egypt should establish a permanent “bill of rights” to protect religious and personal freedoms before holding elections that could give power to an Islamist majority. It would “remove the sense of angst that exists today in Egypt,” said a spokeswoman for Mohamed ElBaradei, a liberal presidential contender.

Comments (145)

Shami said:

Mabrouk to Syria…political divide is healthy thing ,the dying regime was an insult to Syria’s history and culture.

Are there menhebak intellectuals ?
They all look like Talib Ibrahim,Bouti,Hassoun and Khaled Aboud…

But the favourite of the regime are the lebanese clowns like Wiam Wahhab ,Rafiq Nasrallah and Naser Qandil.

Yala ila mazbalet el tarikh …

June 2nd, 2011, 4:35 pm


Syrian Knight said:

These clowns don’t represent anyone or anything in Syria. It’s amazing how extremists like Shami pretend to believe in democracy, but then piss on the millions of Syrians who shout loud and clear their support for the Syrian government. I hope the army wipes out all of these extremists.

June 2nd, 2011, 4:41 pm


873 said:

Congrats on your new management. Hope y’all speak Hebrew.

Have you seen the latest CNN Headline on the Egyptian farce?
“Egypt is still run by a military dictatorship” 5/20/2011

We’ll see how the western-backed local Syrian and Libyan puppets play out in the region. I’d lay bets on precedent: hybrid between Iraq and Afghanistan.

Where is the west’s training of similiar govts-in-waiting for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan? Maybe the NYT ABC NBC CNN… could help them with their PR efforts. LOLOL

“We are grateful to the Washington Post, the New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years.

“It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subjected to the lights of publicity during those years. But, the world is more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government. The supranational sovereignty of an intellectual elite and world bankers is surely preferable to the national autodetermination practiced in past centuries.”

— David Rockefeller, Speaking at the June, 1991 Bilderberger meeting in Baden, Germany

June 2nd, 2011, 4:47 pm


873 said:

OBL = Muslim Mista’aravim = Al Qaeda

US Army War College Allan Sobrosky

June 2nd, 2011, 4:59 pm


jad said:

حول الدعوة إلى إنشاء تجمعات وطنية، والخوف من الاعتقال

الكثير الكثير من الاستفسارات بكل الطرائق (انترنت، هاتف، شخصي..) أكدت أن الدعوة التي وجهتها في مقالي السابق: “ما بين معارضة مسخرة، ونظام أحمق.. هل سيعلو صوت الناس ضدهما؟!” كانت صدى لما يفكرون به. لكن تساؤلا كبيرا مازال مشرعا: ماذا سيكون موقف النظام السوري، وأجهزته الأمنية القمعية بامتياز، نحو مثل هذه المبادرات؟ ألن يجري اعتقال كل من يبادر إليها؟ أن يتهم بإنشاء جمعية سرية تهدف إلى تغيير كيان الدولة، والانتماء إليها؟ ألن تكون النتيجة حملة اعتقالات واسعة جديدة قد يطول مدى الاعتقال فيه إلى أكثر من مجرد أيام معدودات؟!…..

بكل بساطة: إنها ليست أسئلة محقة فحسب، بل دقيقة تماما. وتعكس فعلا ما فعلته تلك الأجهزة، وحالة الطوارئ عبر خمسين سنة من سلطتها المطلقة. وكيف أنها جعلت الناس تخاف حتى من التعبير عن حبها وأملها بسورية ديمقراطية وآمنة، حرة ومستقرة، بسبب بطش تلك الأجهزة وانفلاتها من كل عقال.

فهل سيفعل النظام السوري ذلك؟ هل سيواجه هذه التجمعات بالعنف والاعتقال والاضطهاد؟

تتعلق الإجابة على هذا السؤال أساسا بقراءة موقف النظام من “الإصلاحات الجذرية والعميقة”. فمن يعتقد أنه “يمثل” على الناس، ويلعب بالوقت الضائع ريثما تهدأ الأمور ليعاود سيرته القديمة، سيحمل جوابا واحدا غير قابل للنقاش: نعم، هذا ما سيحدث.

لكن، إذا كان الجواب أن النظام جاد فعلا في هذه الإصلاحات (بغض النظر عن سبب ومبرر هذه الجدية، وآلية تطبيقها، وهو موضوع تناولته في مقالات أخرى)، فإن الجواب سيختلف كثيرا. وطبعا هذا هو رأيي.

إضافة إلى ذلك، يعي النظام جيدا الآن أنه لم يعد من الممكن له التحكم بالشعب السوري بالطريقة القديمة. بالقبضة الأمنية المغلقة. هو ما زال يمارس ذلك على نطاق محدود لا يمكن مشابهته أبدا بما كان حتى قبل أشهر، فكيف بقبل سنوات أو عقود؟! فقلة نادرة ممن يعتقل اليوم يمضي وقتا طويلا في السجن. الغالبية العظمى قد تعتقل لأيام، وكثيرون يرسلون فورا إلى السجون المدنية. وهذا له دلالته الهامة لمن يريد أن يقرأ جيدا.

أراد النظام هذه التجمعات أم لم يردها، فهذا ليس هو السؤال. السؤال الآن أن سورية كلها تقع بين فكي كماشة: بعض أقطاب النظام الشرهين للمزيد من السلطة والدم، وبعض أقطاب المعارضة الذين لا يقلون شراهة للسلطة والدم. وكلاهما يلعب بقواه العسكرية، وبالتجهيل والكذب والتلفيق، وبالتحريض والتجييش الطائفي، كل بوسائله.
وإذا كان لدى هذه الأقطاب في النظام القوة العسكرية وسائر قوى الدولة لفعل ذلك، فإن لدى هذه الأقطاب في المعارضة سلاح بات قويا جدا وفعالا هو الإعلام، مضافا إليه قوة عسكرية محدودة لأصولية مسلحة ومجرمين، وقوة أموال وتهديد أيضا، إضافة إلى قوة علاقاتها مع دوائر الاستخبارات والقرار في العالم، من أمريكا حتى تركيا. وهي استخدمت هذه القوى جميعا بمهارة عالية فعلا.

فماذا يجب أن نفعل من أجل سورية؟ وهل يستحق “استدعاء أمني”، أو حتى اعتقال بضعة أيام، أن نترك سورية لهؤلاء المجرمين؟ وأن نرمي بحاضرنا ومستقبلنا ومستقبل أطفالنا لقمة سائغة لأمراء الحرب هؤلاء، فلا تقوم لهذا البلد قائمة حتى وقت طويل؟!

لا أعتقد أن سوريا/ة واحدا سيفكر جديا بأنه مستعد لفعل ذلك. ولا أدل من هذه الحقيقة انفضاض الناس عن الزعران من كلا الجانبين، عن “دراكولات” العنف ممن يدعي ممارسته حرصا على أمن سورية، أو من يدعي أنه لا يمارسه فيما هو فعلا يمارسه على الأرض بألف وسيلة ووسيلة باسم الحرية والديمقراطية.
وهذا الانفضاض معبر عنه بكثير من الوسائل، أهمها اتجاه الشباب السوري إلى البحث فعلا عن الطريق الثالث الذي لا يقف على الحياد، بل يأخذ موقفا واضحا وعلنيا ضد العنف من الجميع، ضد التجييش من الجميع، ضد تدمير سورية بأي إسم كان. ومع الحلول المدنية للتحول إلى ديمقراطية حقيقية، وحرية حقيقية، مع الحفاظ التام على أمن سورية واستقراراها، وعدم تسليمها لا لمجرمي العنف من النظام، ولا لنظراهم من المعارضة..
وهذا الاتجاه الذي حاول الطرفان تهميشه طوال الوقت الماضي، وحاربوه بكل الوسائل المتاحة (بما فيها الأشد قذارة وشخصية)، قرر أخيرا أن يظهر نفسه ويقول رأيه.

وبالتالي: فإن استدعاء أمنيا حول هذا التجمع أو ذاك، أو هذا المطلب أو ذاك، ليس أمرا يستحق التوقف عنده أمام أهمية ما نقوم به من إيقاف لموجة العنف التي باتت تستهدف وجودنا، تماما مثلما أن اتها هذا أو ذاك لنا بأننا أبواق النظام أو عملاءه هو أمر لا يستحق حقا التوقف عنه.

ومع ذلك، لا أعتقد أن أي “خطر” من اعتقال أو حتى استدعاء سينجم عن تكوين والمشاركة وتفعيل مثل هذه المبادرات والتجمعات، مادامت آليتها واضحة وشفافة، وأهدافها واضحة ومحددة، وتنضم جميعا تحت البند المدني الصريح، والمتضمن رفضا لكل أشكال العنف، والتصعيد، والتدخل الخارجي، وكل الشعارات البراقة التي لا تؤدي إلا إلى المزيد من العنف والتدهور..

وبالتأكيد: ليست مطالب الديمقراطية المحددة، بمستوياتها المختلفة، ولا مطالب إيقاف العنف ومحاسبة كل المسؤولين عن ارتكابه، حتى من النظام، ولا كل المطالب المتعلقة بضبط عمل الأجهزة الأمنية، والإعلام، والحوار الوطني، وإيقاف الاعتقالات العشوائية، و…. ليست مطالبا تقع تحت بند “الخطر” من رد فعل النظام بأي شكل كان.

بعض السفهاء سوف يستغلون هذا الكلام، كعادتهم، للمزيد من الهجوم على الخط الثالث الذي يرفع شعار: سورية حرة وديمقراطية وآمنة ومستقرة معا. لكن شأنهم شأن غيرهم: لا يفعلون بذلك سوى أن يكشفوا حقيقة أنهم يحفرون المزيد من الخنادق في سورية التي تعبت من الخنادق، تعبت من العنف، تعبت من التجييش، تعبت من الكذب والنفاق والمخاتلة.. وتريد، فورا، إقصاء كل دعاة العنف وممارسيه من أي لون كانوا.

من هنا، أعيد الدعوة إلى كل مجموعة شباب/ات، ترى أنها تجتمع على مطلب ما، أو رأي ما، أن تبدأ فورا العمل على وضع إطار لعملها..

كما أدعوه هؤلاء إلى التخلي عن أوهام “كبار المثقفين والمعارضين”، فمع الاحترام لهم أو بدونه، انتهت صلاحية الكبار جميعا. وأثبتوا أن قدرتهم العظيمة هي فقط في اجترار وتكرار العبارات نفسها. والتكلم باسمكم/ن دون أن يمنحهم أحد هذا الحق. فلا تعطوا أية أهمية لوجود “أسماء” في مبادراتكم. بل فقط لوجودكم/ن أنتم، ولعملكم/ن أنتم. فسورية اليوم وغدا هي أنتم، وليست من يعيش على أمجاد الماضي…

فلتمد السواعد، وليبدأ العمل. لن يستطيع أحد إيقاف المسار نحو سورية حرة وديمقراطية وآمنة ومستقرة معا، وأمراء الحرب ذاهبون، جميعا، إلى مكانهم الطبيعي الذي نعرفه جيدا..

June 2nd, 2011, 5:32 pm


Aboud said:


I’m saving this and filing it under “Baathists comments that must be read so the world can understand why dialogue with Baathists is a hopeless waste of time.”

First, there are no millions in Syria shouting their support for junior. How many pro-government demos have we seen? If the government doesn’t force school children and the civil servants out to wave junior’s pictures, we never see any. At least Ali Abdullah Saleh could count on multitudes of supporters. In Homs, you never see any cars with junior’s picture on them any more.

Every night for a week, people all over Syria have been shouting Allahu Akbar from their balconies and windows. Why haven’t we heard as so much as a whisper of “Menhibak ya Bashar” all this time?

The only people chanting Bashar’s name are Shabiha scum, after they brutalize a town or demonstration.

And of course they make sure they are armed when doing so. Because shouting Bashar’s name is never done unless you have an AK-47 in your hands. It would be like praying without a prayer mat.

And then this;

“I hope the army wipes out all of these extremists.”

Which is the only way Baathists know how to deal with dissent; by the barrels of guns and tanks. National Dialogue…har har har.

June 2nd, 2011, 5:54 pm


Nour said:


This is a great article by Bassam. He appears to be one of the few logical and reasonable voices in Syria today. I hope more and more people listen to people like him.

June 2nd, 2011, 5:55 pm


why-discuss said:

I think it is run against time for the government. If it is able to create a serious and believable dialog with the internal Opposition AND the business community before the external group escalates to involve the HRW and the UN, then there is a chance they can foil the trap.
If the majority of the business community in Syria shows an open support for Bashar al Assad as a leader, then the external opposition has less chances to push their agenda.
I am wondering what the syrian business community is waiting to organize a huge conference in Syria on business as a way to give a vote of confidence to Bashar Al Assad.

June 2nd, 2011, 6:08 pm


why-discuss said:


A national dialog? They are asking for the removal of the president and the fall of the government by force, what dialog are you talking about?

June 2nd, 2011, 6:11 pm


democracynow said:

The story of Hamzah Al-Khatib: story of brutality of the Syrian regime

I will not reveal the name of the person in Syria who sent this: “Hello guys: I went two days ago (on Monday) to Hamza’s home and heard the entire story from his father. The martyr went on the Friday 29th to break the siege on dar3a the father (65 year) said: ” he wore wonderful clothes… he looked amazing and he took some stuff to dar3a nd went with the rest of the families.. I heard the shooting later on and so then the dead and injured people.. I asked about him the people told me he was wounded and arrested.. he was taken by the bus.. we asked about him everywhere and nobody had an answer.. until somebody called his cousin who is his his teacher too, to say that there is a body for a kid in the morgue in Dar3a, the cousin went there and after staring in the body for 45 minutes he could be sure that this was 7amze (I don’t know how the Dunia TV recognized him immediately when they have no names) the doctor checked the body and wrote his report (the report is genuine) the doctor tried to find his penis inside the body coz he did not believe his eyes!! the body was then taken and buried and the police called the father and asked him to make an interview with the Syrian TV and he did but saying the entire story as it happened but they did not broadcast it!! the mother has now a nerval breakdown and I could not see her”.

From the Angry Arab blog.

June 2nd, 2011, 6:15 pm


aboali said:

The seeds of democracy have been planted in Syria, and the days of the tyranny of the Assads and the Baath are over. The blood of the hundreds killed won’t have gone in vain, it will have been for a better future.

June 2nd, 2011, 6:29 pm


jad said:

اعترافات ارهابيين قتلتوا المتظاهرين والأمن بحمص

June 2nd, 2011, 6:43 pm


Aboud said:


Hamzah Al-Khatib was bringing food to the besieged town of Dara’a. He was on a mission of mercy when he was shot and abducted by the shabiha scum. He had the purest of motives, “good” in every sense of the word. And for that, he was brutalized in the most evil, vicious way imaginable. You do not have “dialogues” with the scum who did such things, nor with the leaders who ordered such barbarity. Nor with people who, instead of condemning such cruelty, find excuses for such evil.

June 2nd, 2011, 6:50 pm


jad said:

Why the father didn’t go with his 13 yo son to bring food to Dar’a and be part of the mission of mercy, knowing how dangerous the situation is?

June 2nd, 2011, 6:59 pm


Thanks said:

Perhaps the most important contribution this conference had accomplished is giving hope of success to Syrians inside, increased numbers of protesters tomorrow will be a sign for this, this will help sustain the unrest, and buy time form already tired regime.

However the business elite will need more substance to switch sides and support opposition, although the conference members have exerted efforts in assuring their good deeds toward stable future of Syria, the future remains in a huge uncertainty, their declaration of rejecting foreign intervention is very clever at this stage, while the regime is unlikely to step down, and the opposition is unlikely to give up, some destruction is inevitable.

The foreign intervention or any opposition military action will be requested and coordinated by people inside, the opposition outside will provide the means to implement their requests, thus opposition outside will be in lagging position to insider opposition’s will.

This opposition group is working toward least loss in lives and properties, they are trying to have military leaders, business elite, minorities leaders on their side, thus weakening the regime position, and make their flee easier if it will happen at all, however the resolved Libyan, Egyptian, Tunisian, and Yamane cases will have impact on the actions that affect changing the roadmap presented today.

June 2nd, 2011, 7:14 pm


jad said:

“This opposition group is working toward least loss in lives”
They just said that couple millions of dead Syrians is O.K. with them similar to Madeleine Albright 500,000 dead kids note, “it’s worth it”.

“their declaration of rejecting foreign intervention is very clever at this stage”
The conference expenses where partially paid by the Americans, no foreign intervention indeed, it’s like 1918 coming back to life.

June 2nd, 2011, 7:38 pm


Tara said:


Why can’t you guys understand we can not live in slavery anymore. Whatever it takes to get our freedom! By peacefull means!!

June 2nd, 2011, 7:42 pm


Nour said:

«يوم حداد على كل الشهداء» والسماح للإعلام الخارجي
سوريا: العودة متاحة لكل المنفيين تصعيد في لهجة كلينتون ومعارضي أنتاليا

المعارض السوري عبد الرحيم بحرو يهتف خلال مؤتمر أنتاليا أمس (رويترز)

دمشق ـ «السفير»
تزامن التصعيد الأميركي في اللهجة ضد الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد أمس، عبر اعتبار أن شرعيته «نفدت تقريبا»، مع دعوة مؤتمر المعارضة السورية المجتمع في أنتاليا التركية، الأسد إلى الاستقالة «الفورية» وتسليم السلطة لنائبه، في حين كانت مصادر سورية تؤكد أن المادة 49 باتت بحكم الملغاة، وأنه بإمكان كل المنفيين من «الإخوان المسلمين» العودة إلى البلاد إن استكملوا الإجراءات القانونية المطلوبة، كما اجتمعت هيئة الإشراف على الحوار الوطني لتسمي مجموعة من الإجراءات أبرزها السماح لعدد من وسائل الإعلام الخارجية بدخول البلاد، وإعلان يوم للحداد العام على «كل شهداء سوريا من دون استثناء».
في هذه الأثناء، قال نشطاء إن القوات السورية قتلت 15 متظاهرا في مدينة الرستن في وسط البلاد، فيما شيّعت من المشفى العسكري في حمص جثامين أربعة شهداء من الجيش بينهم ضابط استهدفتهم «المجموعات الارهابية المسلحة» في الرستن بحسب وكالة «سانا» السورية للأنباء.
وأكدت مصادر سورية واسعة الإطلاع لـ«السفير» أن القانون 49 بات بحكم الملغى، وأنه بإمكان كل المنفيين من جماعة «الإخوان المسلمين» العودة إن استكملوا الإجراءات القانونية المطلوبة، وذلك ضمن الإجراءات السياسية التي بدأت القيادة السورية بتنفيذها خطوة بعد أخرى، بهدف نقل البلاد إلى أجواء الحوار السياسي من الأجواء الأمنية السابقة.
وعلمت» السفير» في هذا السياق أن هيئة الإشراف على الحوار الوطني سمت في اجتماعها الثاني تحت رئاسة نائب رئيس الجمهورية فاروق الشرع أمس، مجموعة من الإجراءات تركز على «المعالجة السياسية للأزمة»، وأنه في هذا الإطار سيسمح لعدد «من وسائل الإعلام الخارجية بدخول البلاد لتغطية أحداثها وزيارة مختلف المحافظات» وذلك للحد من «التضليل الإعلامي الذي يواكب الأزمة السورية»، وفقا لتعبيرها.
ورأت المصادر أن أبرز الإجراءات التي تأتي أيضا في سياق «تركيز الحل السياسي» ستتمثل في «إعلان يوم للحداد العام في سوريا يشمل كل شهدائها بدون استثناء» وأن البلاد بحاجة الآن إلى «ترسيخ أجواء الحوار كما التشجيع له» حيث أوضحت المصادر أن هذا يمكن أن يجري عبر لقاءات وحوارات وطنية تعقد تمهيدا على شاشات التلفزيون. وفي هذا السياق علمت «السفير» أن الدولة معنية بالحوار مع جميع من يقبل بالحوار وذلك «تحت سقف الوحدة الوطنية الجامعة،» حيث اشارت في هذا السياق الى أن القانون 49 الذي شمله عفو الرئيس الأسد أول من أمس بات «بحكم الملغى» وأن «كل منفي على اساس هذا القانون بات يستطيع العودة باستكمال إجراءاته القانونية». وعلى الرغم من أن أي مسؤول سوري لم يقلها صراحة بعد، إلا أنه من الواضح أن جماعة «الإخوان المسلمين»، باتت معنية بالدعوة للحوار ولكن داخل القطر.
أما «المؤتمر السوري للتغيير» المنعقد في مدينة أنتاليا التركية فأعلن أن المجتمعين «يلتزمون برحيل بشار الأسد وإسقاط النظام ودعم الحرية ويدعونه الى الاستقالة الفورية من جميع مناصبه وتسليم السلطة حسب الإجراءات المرعية الى نائبه». ولم يتطرق البيان الختامي الى مرسوم العفو.
ودعا البيان ايضا «الى انتخاب مجلس انتقالي يضع دستورا ثم تتم الدعوة الى انتخابات برلمانية ورئاسية خلال فترة لا تتجاوز العام ابتداء من استقالة الرئيس» السوري. كما أكد «الاستمرار في دعم ثورة شعبنا حتى تحقيق اهدافها مصرين على اركانها الوطنية الحفاظ على وحدة التراب الوطني ورفض التدخل الاجنبي مشددين على ان الثورة لا تستهدف اي فئة معينة». وأشار البيان الى ان «الشعب السوري يتكون من قوميات عديدة عربية وكردية وكلدو اشورية وشركس وأرمن، ويؤكد المؤتمر على تثبيت الحقوق المشروعة والمتساوية لكل المكونات في دستور سوريا الجديدة»، داعيا «الى الدولة المدنية القائمة على ركائز النظام البرلماني التعددي» متجنبا بذلك الدخول في الجدل حول العلمانية او فصل الدين عن الدولة.
وأكد البيان ايضا انه يتعهد ان «سوريا المستقبل ستحترم حقوق الانسان وستكون دولة مدنية تقوم على مبدأ فصل السلطات وتعتمد الديموقراطية والاحتكام الى صناديق الاقترع». وناشد «الشعوب العربية وجامعة الدول العربية ومنظمة المؤتمر الاسلامي تحمل مسؤولياتهم القانونية والاخلاقية لوقف انتهاكات حقوق الانسان». وأشار اخيرا الى انتخاب «هيئة استشارية مهمتها اختيار هيئة تنفيذية تقوم بوضع خطة عملية لحشد الدعم للداخل».
ومباشرة قبل تلاوة البيان الختامي انتخب المؤتمرون هذه الهيئة الاستشارية حيث تنافست قائمتان فازت بنهاية الانتخابات قائمة تضم ممثلين عن كافة شرائح المشاركين بأكثرية 80 في المئة مقابل 20 في المئة لقائمة «مستقلين» اي 203 اصوات مقابل 50 صوتا.
وأعلن القيمون على اللائحة الاولى التي فازت انها تضم اربعة اشخاص من «الاخوان المسلمين» وأربعة من «اعلان دمشق» وأربعة من الاكراد وأربعة من العشائر، في حين خصصت المقاعد الباقية الـ15 للشبان الذين اكدوا في مداخلاتهم في المؤتمر انهم لا ينتمون لاي حزب او تنظيم. وكانت الجلسة الصباحية للمؤتمر شهدت جدلا حول تضمين او عدم تضمين البيان الختامي دعوة الى فصل الدين عن الدولة، وانتهى الامر الى صيغة توفيقية وردت في البيان الختامي دعت الى «الدولة المدنية القائمة على ركائز النظام البرلماني التعددي».
وعقد مشاركون في المؤتمر من المنتمين الى التيار العلماني مؤتمرا صحافيا على هامش اعمال المؤتمر اعلنوا خلاله ولادة «ائتلاف القوى العلمانية السورية» الذي يصر على تضمين الدستور السوري الجديد اشارة الى فصل الدين عن الدولة.
وقال رئيس الوزراء التركي رجب طيب اردوغان إن تركيا تفتح ابوابها لاستقبال داعمي الأسد كما تستقبل معارضيه، كما أعلن انه سيتصل بالأسد ليعرب له عن امتنانه إزاء قرار العفو، كونه اتصل به قبل يومين من ذلك طالبا الإفراج عن المعتقلين، فيما قال وزير الخارجية أحمد داود اوغلو إن «على التوتر في سوريا ان ينتهي. وتطبيق الإصلاحات هو الطريقة الوحيدة للقيام بذلك»، وذلك خلال مقابلة مع قناة «هابيرترك» التركية.
من جهتها، قالت وزيرة الخارجية الأميركية هيلاري كلينتون ملمحة الى روسيا والصين «موقف المجتمع الدولي حاليا ليس موحدا كما نسعى ان يكون. لم نحصل بعد على موافقة بعض الاعضاء الآخرين في مجلس الامن». وأضافت كلينتون «أولئك الذين نسعى لاقناعهم برؤيتنا للوضع أعتقد انه يتعين عليهم التوصل الى قرارهم الخاص. لكننا نعتقد انه سيكون أفضل لهم أن يكونوا في الجانب الصحيح من التاريخ». وتابعت قائلة «يتعين على المجتمع الدولي الاستمرار في اتخاذ أقوى موقف ممكن والمطالبة باتخاذ إجراءات محددة، ليس فقط مثل الإعلان عن عفو، بل الافراج عن السجناء السياسيين وإنهاء عمليات الاحتجاز الظالمة والسماح لمراقبي حقوق الانسان بدخول البلاد».
ولمحت كلينتون الى أن صبر الولايات المتحدة على الأسد ينفد لكنها لم تصل الى حد مطالبته بوضوح بالاستقالة. وقالت كلينتون للصحافيين في مؤتمر صحافي إن «الشرعية اللازمة ليتوقع أي شخص حدوث تغيير في ظل الحكومة الحالية نفدت تقريبا إن لم تكن قد انتهت بالفعل». وأضافت «إذا لم يقم بقيادة الاصلاح يتعين عليه إفساح الطريق … أين يذهب هذا شأنه».
وجدد وزير الخارجية الروسي سيرغي لافروف ثبات الموقف الروسي الرافض لأي تدخل أجنبي في شؤون سوريا الداخلية. وقال لافروف خلال مؤتمر صحافي مشترك مع نظيره البلغاري نيكولاي ملادينوف اثر اختتام مباحثاتهما في موسكو إن سوريا دولة محورية في الشرق الأوسط وإن أي محاولة لزعزعة استقرارها يمكن أن تسفر عن عواقب كارثية مشددا على وجوب التصدي لهذه المحاولات وقطع دابرها. ونوه وزير الخارجية الروسي بالإصلاحات التي اعلنتها القيادة السورية وقال إن السلطات السورية باشرت بإصلاحات فعلية مؤكداً أن رفض المعارضة لهذه الإصلاحات والاقتراحات سيكون موقفاً تتحمل مسؤوليته. كما أعلن ممثل روسيا الدائم لدى الاتحاد الأوروبي فلاديمير تشيكوف أن الرئيس الروسي ديميتري ميدفيديف حذر الجميع علناً وبصورة دقيقة من أن روسيا لن تدعم أي قرار دولي ضد سوريا يجيز استخدام القوة .
(«السفير»، أ ف ب، أ ب، رويترز)

June 2nd, 2011, 7:57 pm


Sophia said:

Israel probably experimenting with new crowd control munitions by leaving them near Palestinian homes.

They so much fear the next freedom and democracy march by Palestinians. We will see how these ‘freedom lovers’ will treat peaceful Palestinians asking for the right of return…

June 2nd, 2011, 8:00 pm


jad said:

Why can’t you understand that people’s lives are not for you or me or anybody to donate them.
It’s not about freedom what I’m arguing about, it’s about this disgusting attitude toward the ‘life’ of ‘others’ and how simple it is for someone behind his/her computer to give away people’s lives as if he/she is God, without thinking of the consequences the actual killing act on those real people who are related to the real person who will die.
Think about it.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:05 pm


Aboud said:

@14 JAD

“Why the father didn’t go with his 13 yo son to bring food to Dar’a and be part of the mission of mercy, knowing how dangerous the situation is?”

Because until the moment when the Shabiha scum butchered so many people, just for carrying food and water to their friends in Dar’a, no one could have possibly imagined that doing so could get you shot, arrested, mutilated, burned with cigars, and your bones broken. Like one Palestinian near Dar’a said, “Looks like Bashar wants us to learn to be grateful for Israel’s mercies.”


“They just said that couple millions of dead Syrians is O.K”.

Um, “they” didn’t say anything. It was a casual comment by someone in North Lebanon, fleeing the besieged town of Telkelakh, said comment being made to a Western journalist.

Now compare it to Rami Makhlouf’s perverted “we will fight to the last fighter RAAAAAAAAAAWR!” interview. How many such thugs does the regime have? Easily more than two million.

So on one hand, you have a statement by a scared, angry, and anonymous refugee. And on the other, a similar statement by the president’s relative, and a man whose obscene wealth depends on the strings he pulls and the laws he has created to sustain his ill gotten gains. Clearly, common sense clearly states whose statement should be given more weight.

But then again, common sense never did apply to a bunch of people who love to put up statues of a man who lost three wars.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:05 pm


majedkhaldoon said:

In Anatalya, the opposition call for Bashar to leave, and for Faooq Al Shar3 to take his place,for a year.manage a change.
This decision is wrong, Frooq is strong supporter of Bashar, and he is hated even by people of Der3a.
Further Farooq has no support from the army or the torture and oppression forces.he will not last a week, I think someone from the army,who is not pro Assad would be much better choice.preferable someone from Aleppo.It doesnot matter if he is Mosslem or Christian,it would be better if they named 10-12 high ranking officers who they choose one to head the transition.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:14 pm


jad said:

It was April 29th!! Weeks after Shabiha being let in the streets along the Salafis militia killing machines, if you were the father would you ever let your kid to go out in such bloody times in such bloody area? No sane person will do that.

“Um, “they” didn’t say anything.”
Yes ‘they’ did, even before Talkalakh ‘angry’ guy, ‘they’ were saying that it’s O.K. if we loose couple millions ‘it’s worth it’, it was put in a post here on SC a month ago.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:23 pm


Sophia said:

I believe the picture posted with this article was staged to make believe that this revolution is empowering women. Look how this woman is alone surrounded by men.

Can somebody tell me how many women delegates were at Antalya?

June 2nd, 2011, 8:26 pm


Alex said:

Peres urges Russia to cease sale of advanced weapons to Syria
In meeting on sidelines of event in Italy, President tells Russian counterpart that weapons systems likely to find their way to terror groups such as Hezbollah.

By Haaretz Service Tags: Syria Shimon Peres Hezbollah

According to a statement released by the president’s office, Peres discussed ongoing turmoil in the Arab world with the Russian leaders, saying that Syria was undergoing a critical time of change.

“Assad has killed thousands of protesters in cold blood and I do not know what the future may hold,” Peres said.
Shimon Peres and Dmitry Medvedev – GPO

Shimon Peres and Dmitry Medvedev, June 2, 2011.
Photo by: GPO

In the face of such uncertainty, Peres urged his Russian counterpart to avoid selling advanced weapons systems to Syria, since “there was no way to know who would eventually hold those weapons,” the president said, adding Russia must aid in stemming the flow of weapons from Syria to “terrorist groups, first and foremost Hezbollah.”

Speaking of the Mideast peace process, Medvedev told Peres that Russia fully supported the principles presented in U.S. President Barack Obama’s Mideast policy speech, adding that Russia, like many other nations around the world, was concerned with Israel’s settlement expansion activities.

In response, Peres said that a change in Hamas’ policies and conduct, and their renouncement of terror, would lead toward a positive and creative direction.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:31 pm


majedkhaldoon said:

There is going to be a sanction against the elite sunni busenessmen who are supporting the regime,and their wives,also.this can be done by the wesern europe and USA,it doesnot require Russia or China approval.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:37 pm


N.Z. said:

The father did not accompany his late son Hamza, thinking that children will be spared. Unknowing, that this regime have been working for 40 years in turning the sick and opportunist into senseless citizens, killing anyone, let alone children in the name of security, is pure baloney.

Anyone who excuses these senseless crimes, is a culprit and guilty of crimes against humanity. Expressing ones desire for freedom, will neither make you a traitor nor an infiltrator, it is our right.

Apologists, please spare us your silly excuses.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:44 pm


Sophia said:

# 23 Jad,

I think it is a waste of time to rationalise and try to explain the caveats in information about Hamza’s torture marks. I think as long as we don’t know the facts for sure from an independant source, it is a futile exercice. I heard a CBC radio program and they talked with a certain Al-Hindi (Syrian political refugee) in washington. He said that Hamza’s parents (father and uncle) were coerced into hiding the truth from the western press and align with the regime as was Sayasna.

Hamza’s story was making the headlines in the western press, TV, and radio yesterday and today.

CBC program, thursday June 2 (part one)

The regime will be held responsible wihtout knowing the facts for the simple reason that even if Hamza was not tortured by the regime, people will believe the anti-regime story because everybody knows that this regime has tortured in the past. So it is not enough for the regime to try and rationalise or do anything about this story for that matter. Either they know who tortured Hamza and they have the obligation to tell the truth and to ask forgiveness and to punish those who did it, or they don’t know, and it might be the ‘protesters’ who are eager to give the regime a bad publicity and to give themselves a good one. I had a suspicion about this when El Hindi seemed to imply that it is routine for the regime to go after children and to torture them. I mean Hamza’s story is tragic enough not to feel the need to add something to it.

But if this was the doing of the protesters and the regime knows nothing than they just shouldn’t talk about it, the regime is trapped.

June 2nd, 2011, 8:44 pm


aboali said:

specially made for the Jama3et min7ibak:

June 2nd, 2011, 8:46 pm


why-discuss said:


“This decision is wrong, Frooq is strong supporter of Bashar, and he is hated even by people of Der3a.
Further Farooq has no support from the army or the torture and oppression forces.he will not last a week”

I wonder why you did not go to Antalya to present your analysis and recommendations. Maybe they did not invite you?

Can’t you see they have no one to replace Bashar al Assad!

Anyone who will come will be rejected by more than 80% of the Syrians and would not be able to do anything ( look at what is happening to the Army ruling Egypt, it is more and more paralyzed)
Wake up, Bashar is here to stay unless… you present yourself!

June 2nd, 2011, 8:50 pm


Tara said:


Why can’t you believe that we are not salsfists and we hate them as much as you do?

I am not denying some armed gangs may have infilitrated the revolution but they are not the revolution.

Is there anything we can say or do to make regime supporters see it as it really is: Allah Souria Houria wa bas?

June 2nd, 2011, 8:54 pm


syria no kandahar said:

There is no balance in the international community in approaching the syrian issue,every body is using lost syria lifes to there best interest<even Shemon Peres is now upset about the lost syrian lifes.
on question to the Opposition :what were officer Tallawi's kids,were they Japanese or Nikaraguan?were they cloned or were they pigs?when would stop acting like merchants selling and bying every syrian life according to tour agenda?why did't Hillary mention that after what the opposition did to those kids it lost you legitimacy?
This bunch of croocks in the opposition is the most imbalanced ,decieving and stupid.The regime is not a group of saints but the opposition is a bunch of devils,Syria with them will be CRAP

June 2nd, 2011, 9:00 pm


why-discuss said:


The West loves gory stories like that ( castration, torture, children abuse, blood, rape etc..). They also love to point to a culprit as quickly as possible so they can blame someone and demonize a whole group. It is much easier for their news-saturated minds.
Remember the demonization of the Talibans when the West published to photos of the woman lapidated. Now Obama wants to bring back the Taliban for talks and there is no more problems with the lapidation, the Burka and the Sharia law anymore. Who will bring back the story of this lapidated woman, now that the US love the Talibans?
So there is no point in trying to find any logic in this tragic and absurd event.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:02 pm


Tara said:

For all Bashar’ lovers on this site

See this link

It is called: More Reasons To Love Bashar

Graphic images. Caution advised!

June 2nd, 2011, 9:10 pm


Jad said:

Where did I call you a Salafi? If you prove that I did call you that, I’ll apologize if not then you need first to apologize then to stop being obnoxious and start using your logic before you write and attack people you don’t know anything about.
One more thing, if you want graphics I can link you bunch, but morals and respect to other people’s feeling and to the souls of the dead I can’t you better do that too.

P.S. A sincere thank you for sharing your story with us, may God protect you and your kid 🙂

June 2nd, 2011, 9:11 pm


aboali said:

Dunia t.v’s award winning journalism: Facebook is used to spy on Syrians, and send their details to the U.N security council:

this channel is beyond ridiculous and absurd …..

June 2nd, 2011, 9:23 pm


daleandersen said:

One delegate’s statement, “People have just had enough of being treated like shit…They have given up on talking with the regime. They don’t want the Assad family anymore.”

I like that. Except for the reference to the Assad “family.” It would require one to apologize to all the real families out there for including the Assads in their midst…

June 2nd, 2011, 9:28 pm


Alex said:

أردوغان: الأسد لم يعترض على مؤتمر أنطاليا
(دي برس)

أكد رئيس الوزراء التركي رجب طيب أردوغان الخميس 2\6\2011 أن الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد لم يعترض على عقد مؤتمر “المعارضة السورية” في مدينة أنطاليا بجنوب تركيا.

وقال أردوغان في مقابلة مع قناة “تي جي أر تي”: “إن أبواب تركيا مفتوحة أيضاً لمؤيدي الأسد مثلما هي مفتوحة لمعارضيه”، مضيفاً حسبما نقلت صحيفة القبس الكويتية أن: “الأسد لم يسألني لماذا تجتمع “المعارضة السورية” في تركيا، ولو كان سألني فإن إجابتي كانت ستأتي واضحة، وهي أن أبواب تركيا ستكون مفتوحة لمؤيديه أيضاً، إن هم أرادوا عقد لقاء في تركيا”.

وأشار أردوغان وفقاً للصحيفة إلى أن اهتمام تركيا بما يجري في سوريا يختلف عن اهتمامها بما جرى في مصر أو تونس، لأن الوضع بالنسبة لسورية مختلف تماماً، وتركيا تعتبر ما يجري في سورية مسألة تخص تركيا، لأن سورية دولة مجاورة، وهناك حدود ممتدة لمسافة 850 كيلو متراً.

وأشار أردوغان إلى أن هذا هو السبب الذي يجعله دائم الاتصال بالرئيس السوري، لافتاً إلى أنه أجرى اتصالاً هاتفياً معه منذ 4 أيام، وطلب منه اتخاذ خطوات حاسمة على طريق الإصلاحات، وأكد له ضرورة اتخاذ خطوة شجاعة.

وتابع أردوغان أن الأسد أصدر بعد يومين من هذا الاتصال قراراً بالعفو العام عن السجناء السياسيين، ومن بينهم الإخوان المسلمون، واصفاً القرار بأنه خطوة شجاعة من جانب الرئيس السوري.

وقال أردوغان: “إنه سيجري اتصالاً آخر معه للتعبير عن امتنانه لهذه الخطوة”.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:30 pm


N.Z.z said:


Obviously, this is not your story , this is the story of our brave men, women and children, whom had the courage to wake us from our slumber, from our ignorance and are paying dearly with their lives.

Yet the ” pen Shabiha” have the audacity to excuse this criminal mafia.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:36 pm


why-discuss said:

Al Jazeera selective silence

Alleged Libyan rape victim deported from Qatar back to Libya

“The UNHCR said it was seeking an explanation from Qatari authorities for al-Obeidy’s deportation.

An official at the Qatari Embassy in Washington asked CNN to e-mail questions about the deportation, but did not respond to them.”

June 2nd, 2011, 9:39 pm


Tara said:


I am speechless. Quite unexpected response.

You are probably right! Few called me salafist but I do not remember who. I apologize.

This is quite difficult time. We are all torn by fear, anger, anguish, paranoia, suspicion, love, hate, compassion, hope, and dreams. Nevertheless, i must say I forgot how kindness feels lately. Thank you for your last comment. I wish you the same

June 2nd, 2011, 9:43 pm


Jonsonz said:

When did Midan become a middle class neighborhood?
At that rate, every neighborhood in damascus is a middle class neighborhood. What do these writers know? hah

“22. majedkhaldoon said:

In Anatalya, the opposition call for Bashar to leave, and for Faooq Al Shar3 to take his place,for a year.manage a change.
This decision is wrong, Frooq is strong supporter of Bashar, and he is hated even by people of Der3a.
Further Farooq has no support from the army or the torture and oppression forces.he will not last a week, I think someone from the army,who is not pro Assad would be much better choice.preferable someone from Aleppo.It doesnot matter if he is Mosslem or Christian,it would be better if they named 10-12 high ranking officers who they choose one to head the transition.

ahahaha.So now all syrians have to listen to what people in deraa want? So someone from the army who has been participating in the activities of the last month will survive with other generals breathing down his neck?
And why aleppo?
Wow…sometimes i wonder about the suggestions on this board…glad we dont make any policy decisions.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:44 pm


Norman said:

I have a question to all of you ,Syrians only please,
To the Syrians outside Syria, why did you leave and why didn’t you go back,

To the Syrians who went back and work in Syria, why did you go back, is it family ties, is your family rich and has connections, are you satisfied that you went back ,

knowing the answers to these questions might tell us what is wrong with Syria and what we should do to make it better.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:44 pm


why-discuss said:


“The father did not accompany his late son Hamza, thinking that children will be spared”

Wasn’t it in Deraa that it all started with the children allegedly beaten and tortured?
Where was poor Hamza’s father at that time? They all knew in Deraa that children were as exposed as adults.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:47 pm


why-discuss said:

Turkey awaits possible release of PKK members in Syrian amnesty

….Syria handed over three members of the PKK to Turkey on Thursday, one day before a scheduled phone conversation between Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and al-Assad.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

Speaking to the state-run broadcaster Turkish Radio and Television, or TRT, late Wednesday, Erdoğan said al-Assad had followed his advice in issuing a general amnesty.

“I told him to release these prisoners to ease the situation. And it’s a very good thing that he listened to me and issued a general amnesty only two days after [we last spoke],” Erdoğan said. “Prisoners have not been released yet but I will call al-Assad to express my gratitude.”

Ankara has been urging Syria to implement reforms in a move reflecting its close relationship with the under-fire president.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:52 pm


syau said:


When will you understand that the Syrian people actually want the peace they knew so well prior to this violent revolution back?

Syria no Kandahar is right, a general was executed along with his 2 children and his nephew, a child was shot and ended up with a massive amount of bullets in his head compliments of the armed gangs affiliated with this revolution. Yesterday a child was shot in Rastan when he was offering soldiers next to his house a pot of tea. He was shot in his waist. The soldiers rushed him to the hospital for emergency surgery.

Where is Hilary Clinton to condemn these acts along with many others committed by the disgusting ‘revolutionists’ scum?- to use one of Aboud’s magnificent words. The army needs to clear the country of these violent gangs and regain stability.

Aboud claims to hear Allah Akbars every night and that is his reasoning behind continuing demonstrations. I say Allah Akbar every day and I’m not part of the demonstrations.

Legitimate demonstrators stopped demonstrating after the announced reforms. Their demands were heard and are being implemented. Any other demonstrators are not legitimate, have no real demands and are on the Hariri & co conspirators payroll list.

Parents with a conscience would not allow their young children to walk side by side in demonstrations infested with armed gangs. Any sane parent would know this.

More armed gangs are being apprehended and large amounts of weapons seized. It’s about time revolutionists stopped supporting these violent murderous gangs and actually supported stability in Syria.

June 2nd, 2011, 9:53 pm


Sophia said:

# 34 Why Discuss,

I fear that militants trained by the taliban will be sent, with the tacit approval of the US and Saudi Arabia, to exterminate Christians, shias, alawis, or for that matter any sect who represent a threat to saudi Arabia and Israel, in Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon.

Sunni extremists funded by KSA have a history of collaboration with the USA. They basically serve the interests of the US and Saudi Arabia, they are their army of darkness, and from time to time they produce a Bin Laden, but Saudi Arabia, with the consent of the US, prefers to keep this army of Islam, the price is worth it. However, I think the US, as a democracy, has the obligation to explain to its citizens why they are making peace with the Taliban. But they won’t explain it. The US who is promoting democracy in the ME is barely a democracy. What makes it a democracy is not ist government which is secretive and which tortures just like the Syrian regime. What makes the US a democracy is its civil society…A civil society can sustain a democracy much more than any strong government. But a ballot box demoracy without a civil society is an autocracy or an oligarchy.

June 2nd, 2011, 10:15 pm


jad said:

Dear Tara,
You are not alone with your mixed feelings, I’ve been having the same problem for a while now and it’s not easy at’s a mental torture.

June 2nd, 2011, 11:06 pm


MicK said:

Anyone that kills children should be in front of the Hague!

In March, NATO killed 9 children. No questions asked. Just dropped a bomb on their house.

On 30 May, NATO killed another 12 children. And two women. Dropped another bomb on their house.

Those bastards are child killers!

Oh wait. They were white men who already have power and money that killed the kids.

It’s fine.

Don’t lose sleep over those 21 dead children.

June 2nd, 2011, 11:08 pm


daleandersen said:

“…suppressed or marginalized for six decades here, Islamists entering politics have rushed to defend an article of the Egyptian Constitution that declares Egypt a Muslim country…”

Yeah, right! And the Muslims built the pyramids, too! LOL!

Before the Imperialist Arabs invaded Egypt and imposed their religion on a conquered people at sword point, Egypt was a province of the Byzantine Empire. Before that, it was a Roman province. Going back even further, it was ruled by Macedonians, Persians, Assyrians, you name it.

It’s been a long time since Egypt was truly Egyptian.

The good news is, what goes up, usually comes down. So one of these days, someone will come into Egypt and replace the Arabs, who will then join the Byzantines, Romans, Macedonians, etc, in the dustbin of history.

In the meantime, the Egyptian Muslims would do well to brighten up their image and start acting like guests in a very old country. Never hurts to try and be polite. That way, when you’re dead and gone, the historians say nice things about you.

June 2nd, 2011, 11:15 pm


why-discuss said:


Did you smoke some pot before writing this?

June 2nd, 2011, 11:19 pm


daleandersen said:

Memo to Sophia:

Re: “…militants trained by the taliban will be sent…to exterminate Christians, shias, alawis, or for that matter any sect who represents a threat to Saudi Arabia and Israel. Sunni extremists…serve the interests of the US and Saudi Arabia, they are their army of darkness…”

Taliban in league with Saudi Arabia and Israel? Jesus, girl! Will you listen to yourself? This is the kind of crap you hear on ultra-right wing radio stations in the USA. I thought only hyper-paranoid conspiracy theorists drank this Kool-Ade, but it seems to be mainstream in the Middle East.

Yup! Looks like dumbdown has gone worldwide…

June 2nd, 2011, 11:33 pm


Mohamed Kanj said:


let shami and his fellow internet geek bloggers and those little children over in turkey keep dreaming on that they will actually achieve something. Their is not a single crack in the syrian government. The syrian people are just waiting for the Syrian Arab Army to cruch these islamist extremist’ one by one. First it was Derra than Douma and now Homs. City by city they will be hunted down like the criminals they are. Patience my friends, in a few weeks it will be the little boyz who will come kneeling before Mr Bashar Al Assad and begging for forgiveness. City by City these brainwashed wahhabi’s will be put down. Every week it is the same old suburbs that keep protesting. They have not gained any momentum at all. SAME OLD SAME OLD BLABLABLABLA

June 2nd, 2011, 11:53 pm


Abughassan said:

For personal and general reasons I will be the first to celebrate if Syria moves to free elections and becomes a true republic ,but it is too early to celebrate,and a bit naive to expect much from that meeting in was a major achievement fir syrians to finally defy the machine of oppression and corruption but the price was the unleashing of thuggish elements within Syria and the loss of many innocent lives. I was amazed ,for example,that the Syrian American Council,or conference,chose to conveniently ignore the crimes committed by militant armed thugs against Syrian army and security officers and blamed the regimes for the daath of its own supporters!!

June 2nd, 2011, 11:57 pm


why-discuss said:


There can’t be any honesty. They want to demonize Bashar Al Assad and any means, even the most despicable, is valid. Not one guy was honest and strong enough to stand up to admit the murders of policemen and soldiers. They were all like cooks in a kitchen preparing food that nobody wants to eat. And they came up with that stupid idea of passing the power to Farouk Sharaa that they all hate and that Syrians too dislike: Brilliant!

June 3rd, 2011, 12:13 am


why-discuss said:


Have you noticed “Ils sont une petite centaine”…. If it was the opposition it would have jumped to “Ils sont plusieurs milliers”
Quelle mauvaise foi!

June 3rd, 2011, 12:16 am


Mohamed Kanj said:

@ 53

what % of syrian american’s does the syrian american council represent? from the videos that are posted on youtube the syrians in american supporting Bashar Al Assad far outweighs the 10’s of syrians against Mr Assad. It must be another organisation setup by Farid Ghadry

Bashar al assad supporters in Australia

Bashar al assad supporters in Canada

80% of syrian expatriates support the current government. It would be a nightmare for the so called “revolutionist” if these expat’s were allowed to vote if their was elections. Any anti-government protests held outside of syria were attended by islamic extremists that are banned in london and sweden etc.

June 3rd, 2011, 12:21 am


Syria no kandahar said:

Can any one explain MB political positions lately :
-Reportedly they have agreed on separating the religion from the government?
-They are claiming to have agreed on secular state?
-In Egypt they have appointed a Christian as VP!!

Does’t all that contradict with there core principles?Does any one believe them?
Reportedly it took 11hours to convince them with that ,may be in 24 hours they would have agreed to jehova witnessers ,as long they have power?
Any thoughts?

June 3rd, 2011, 12:39 am


Louai said:

Syria no kandahar
its easy ,الحرب خدعة !! they know that their image is not good on the eyes of the majority of liberal Muslims because of their bloody history and dodgy start, they need to prepare ‘the society’ to accept their final goal , they tried before to enforce their vision on everyone and they didn’t succeed so now they are trying soft yet smarter way .-in Egypt-.
most regimes were exposing them and discredit them for decades and they succeeded so they need to change that first and then in the right time the would reveal their real ‘mission’

June 3rd, 2011, 1:08 am


democracynow said:

Someone here on this esteemed forum commented about the kidnapping and death of Dr. Sakher Hallak in Aleppo. Said it was the result of ‘falatan amny’ the lack of security that was brought along with the protesters and ‘armed gangs’.

Well, here’s the story of Dr. Hallak. The link was posted on twitter by a relative of his in the US:

June 3rd, 2011, 1:24 am


democracynow said:

“80% of syrian expatriates support the current government. It would be a nightmare for the so called “revolutionist” if these expat’s were allowed to vote if their was elections.”

Mr. Kanj,

If you’re so confident of the popularity of the Syrian regime, then why not accept free and fair elections?


June 3rd, 2011, 1:28 am


873 said:

51. daleandersen said:
Memo to Sophia:

Re: “…militants trained by the taliban will be sent…to exterminate Christians, shias, alawis, or for that matter any sect who represents a threat to Saudi Arabia and Israel. Sunni extremists…serve the interests of the US and Saudi Arabia, they are their army of darkness…”

Taliban in league with Saudi Arabia and Israel? Jesus, girl! Will you listen to yourself? This is the kind of crap you hear on ultra-right wing radio stations in the USA.

Your ignorance at this late stage of things is simply stunning. Even the US govt has admitted- repeatedly- that they themselves funded Al Qaeda all thru the 1980’s. Even Zbig has said so, and he planned the precipitating casus belli for Russian invasion before Carter Admin left office. Read Charlie Wilson’s War as a beginning primer- one of dozens well documented.

All these fakes color revolutions need their media mascots. In Iran it was Nadia “Shot in the Square”, in Tunisia “the humiliated immolated fruit seller”, in Egypt it was the CIA/google backed Wael Ghanem. Now Syria has Hamza as the ‘movement martyr’. “So obvious a caveman could see it”. I guess not.

And the Palestinians, where is their icon? Erased by the jewish controlled media. Didnt hear this publicized on CNN did you?

Look at the bigger pix friends, because built into the design of this latest M.E. NWO psyops is a neat segueway into WW3. Is that what you really want?

June 3rd, 2011, 1:42 am


democracynow said:

Remember the massacre of the workers bus coming from Lebanon? Remember how the regime claimed it was an armed gang who shot them to justify military deployment in Homs?

June 3rd, 2011, 1:58 am


Syria no kandahar said:

If you are a Syrian Sunni (sorry but this is one of the achievements of the Syrian crapulotion,using these wered terminologies),you will vote for Lieberman(the Israeli FM) and will not vote for Assad or any Alawie,following your masters(karadawi and Aroor)recommendation ,remember Alkaradawi paid speech about:انه أسير العلويين.Empty brains can be filled with any thing,and those masters know that and are filling Syrian brains with there poisons and carbage.
Do you really thing that a democracy will be able to survive all these bugs?would you ever vote across your sector?would you vote for a Christian?a Kurd?a gay?
An Alawie?
Do ever listen to Alaroor?do ever think that any democracy can be present 1000 miles circle around him?All he cares about is fetna.The problem with Syrians living in the west is that they ignore so many factors when they look around them and try to apply the same equation to Syria ,they forget the fact that Syria is not France,not sweden ,not holland and not the US.simply put Alaroor in any of these countries and fill theme with Sunnis and shies ,give Alaroor 6 months ,come back ,you will see perfect democracy,the only one left will be him,representing all the authorities,every one else will be enjoying enternal democracy UNDER GROUND.
Good night

June 3rd, 2011, 2:10 am


daleandersen said:

Two great Henry Kissinger witticisms:

“The Arabs and Israelis deserve each other. If they were located anywhere else in the world, we would let them have at each other. Unfortunately they are located in a strategic place.”

“The problem with the Arabs is that they will proceed from one unjustified assumption to another. They will begin by hoping you have accepted something, and then pretend you have accepted, and then assume that there has been a firm agreement, and will later on claim that you have reneged on some understanding.”

June 3rd, 2011, 2:17 am


syau said:


A clip resembling this one, if not the same was linked here before. Please listen to what the man has to say with a clear head, then think to yourself, would anyone survive two hours of non stop shooting by the army on their van?

It’s amazing how he walked away without a scratch, he must be superman.

June 3rd, 2011, 2:31 am


873 said:

Military men are “dumb, stupid animals to be used” as pawns for foreign policy.–Henry Kissinger, National Security Advisor to Nixon, 1973. Freemason, Zionist, White House Advisor during the Iraq and Afghan wars

-The quote is found in “Final Days,” a book by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein. Kissinger has never disputed it.

The quote could also be applied to the nationalist, insurgent Civilian shock troops aka freedom fighters ‘liberating’ Syria and the M.E., those whose freedom agenda is being utilized and steered by outsiders.
Guess what happens to such ‘freedom fighters’ in USA? Prison as “terrorists” under the Patriot Act. Several waltzing revolutionaries were just arrested on Memorial Day at Lincoln Memorial for “Dancing for Freedom” inside the Rotunda.

June 3rd, 2011, 3:41 am


majedkhaldoon said:

When are you going to learn that security is not substitute for freedom.
You call the revolutionist “Scum”
I call them “Noble”, They sacrifice their blood for freedom.
Imagine things changed,and you are in the opposite side, you will be saying what I am saying today.
Religion has calming effect on people,it is codes of ethic, people like you who does not believe in God, has no code of ethics.
You and the rest of pro regime always use bad ,and foul words against the opposition, you just do not understand to discuss rationally,and in polite way,for example ,Why discuss told Dale, did you take a drug before you said that, or you,Syau you says thugs and scum,can you be polite?If Alex is truely applying the rule of this esteeemed forum,Syria comments, a lot of comments would be erased.

June 3rd, 2011, 3:55 am


Mohamed Kanj said:

Can someone please explain to me how the so called “opposition” attempts to get bashar al Assad to resign? Here are some you will have against you : military And security forces who have Been entrenched I’n the government for 40years ; 80% of the population staying at home and refusing to join ; murder of army and security personnel on a daily basis; non participation of other sects and religions I’n protests ( 10-50 people don’t count ); sectariAn slogans used by opposition; security And harmony amongst All religions for the past 50 years; foreign intervention will lead to thousand of lives lost for syrians and foreign forces . Please explain to me how it will be achieved?

June 3rd, 2011, 4:09 am


anas al chawaf said:

I invite “Syria Comment” to launch the debate over the crime against Hamza Al Khateeb…We need to have a high resolution focusing on it and more transparency on what exactly happened?

June 3rd, 2011, 4:20 am


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Dear Bashar and Maher,

I strongly urge you to watch the live event from The Hague, if you’re not already watching this now. History is being written by the victors. Not you in this case. Watch it on TV now, and know what is expecting the both of you, plus others within the Syrian “amn” establishment.

June 3rd, 2011, 4:42 am


Mohamed Kanj said:




June 3rd, 2011, 6:31 am


AKbar Palace said:


Mohamed Kanj,

I take it you don’t like Israel.

That’s OK, you don’t have to visit if you don’t want to.

BTW – Which Arab country is your favorite?

June 3rd, 2011, 7:23 am


Syria no kandahar said:

Thank you for your wisdom:(religion has calming effect on people)
Hmmmm,now I understands what happens every Friday,The imams play Bethoven,I mean they sing
Rap music(kill a cop),very calming.

June 3rd, 2011, 7:40 am


873 said:

WHo benefits? Cui bono? The premier question in any crime. LOLOLOL Of all the momentous issues facing one of the neighboring Color Revolution Countries, Libya- food, water, infrastructure devastation, mass casualties, SURVIVAL etc which issue do Libyan fake Color Revolutionists decide is of utmost importance to be addressed before all others? Thats correct. Libya’s status to “the sh*tty litte country” as one French diplomat so notoriously once called it.

We’re waiting for similiar Syrian announcement, along with the rescinding of the Golan. LOLOL

Libyan rebels will recognise Israel
June 3, 2011 RFI

Libya’s rebel National Transitional Council (NTC) is ready to recognise Israel, according to French philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy, who says he has passed the message on to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The NTC “will be concerned with justice for the Palestinians and security for Israel” it it takes power, Lévy said after meeting Netanyahu Thursday.

“The future regime will maintain normal relations with other democratic countries, including Israel.”

Netanyahu’s office confirmed the meeting with Lévy but did not comment on the discussion. “The prime minister likes to meet intellectuals,” a spokesperson said.

Lévy, who helped persuade France to be the first country to recognise the NTC, visited the rebel-held Libyan city of Misrata last weekend and went on to Jerusalem this week.

Moamer Kadhafi’s regime refused to recognise Israel, even after Egypt’s President Anwar Sadat peace treaty with the country in 1979.

June 3rd, 2011, 8:08 am


Moe said:

Dr. Landis,

With all due respect, posting a friends impression of something, as trust worthy as he/she could be, is not what I would be expecting from you. I visit SC to read more logical objective analysis of what is happening.

Talking about an opposition gathering without telling us who they are, their programs and who they represent does not add any value to the subject.

I struggle to understand this ” The Muslim Brothers and Islamists were under intense pressure to accept the notion of a secular government where religion and state would be separate. They resisted this most of the day but ultimately conceded at the eleventh hour.. ”

Either they call for a secular goverance or not. This is something significant and a principle in any political form and cannot or should not be changed in a few hours. What is your take on this?


June 3rd, 2011, 8:10 am


why-discuss said:


Did the MB sign a official document stating that they accept state and religion separation?

How can anybody believe that the MB will dump the main core of their ideology under the pressure of human rights activist and facebook afficionados in 11 hours in a beach resort. I am really shocked that even Joshua seems so naive to go with that.

It is obviously a tactical move to show some kind of unity as the whole world was watching this group meet.

The moment they will see the power at hand, be sure they will forget that 11th hours promise.
More powder to the eyes!

June 3rd, 2011, 8:23 am


why-discuss said:


Bye Bashar, Welcome Bibi and Grandpa Peres, Bye Bouthaina, Welcome Tzipi! Let’s reserve suites for them at the Damascus Four Seasons for Christmas, sorry… Rosh Hashanah!

Palestinians, well… go to Antalya beach resort, maybe you find some left over supporters for your resistance to feed you.

June 3rd, 2011, 8:32 am


why-discuss said:


“religion has calming effect on people”

Yes, definitely. In Irlande it costed millions of death, in Lebanon thousands of death and total destruction, in Germany and France millions of Jews exterminated by Christians, death and torture under the Spanish Inquisition.. The whole history is full of the crimes made in the name of religion.
Yes, a very calming effect, indeed…when it is not manipulated

June 3rd, 2011, 8:40 am


syau said:


Security is essential for freedom. If your definition of freedom is the chaos that is this revolution, than I think it is not needed. Peace and diversity. That was what Syrians knew so well prior to this revolution. Now the threat of violence is constantly looming and sectarianism has reared its ugly head.

The word scum has never featured in my comments before, I thought I would borrow a word from Abouds vocabulary, unless you haven’t noticed, he seems to use it quite often among others. And I was referring to the violent gangs in the revolution who are anything but noble. They do not give their blood for freedom; they kill and use other people’s blood for their purpose. The ones who you call freedom fighters, I call terrorists.

I agree with you, religion does indeed have a calming effect on people, but that is to people who follow religion as it is supposed to be. My belief in God is great. God does not call for murder and destruction. God does not call for violence after prayers. What is the point of praying if you are going to sin or blasphemy?

Almost everyone anti regime here are the ones who are constantly degrading people and use foul language against them and the regime. Read the comments of the anti regime and it will be clear.

The opposition represents violence and destabilisation. They do not represent freedom, diversity or the Syrian people.

June 3rd, 2011, 8:53 am


trustquest said:

Today the Syrian revolution reached the tipping point. 100,000 protesters in Hama, and the same in Maaret Alnoaman, tens of thousands all over, the regime has no chance. Internet cut off but the news are coming and wait the see….

June 3rd, 2011, 8:59 am


majedkhaldoon said:

Why Discuss,Syrian no Kandahar
I agree that many wars were waged because of religion, but I was talking on completetly different issue,those who follow the religion,should remeber the order in Islam, La Tanabzo bil Alkab, do not call other bad names,by that it is forbidden in Islam to address someone by calling him thugs and scum you should respect the one you are talking to.
You two are guilty of doing that.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:09 am


why-discuss said:


AL JAZEERA : No repression….No army, No security officers

Syria – Jun 3, 2011 – 14:59
Friday, June 3, 2011 – 14:59 – Syria

An eyewitness in Hama estimated that there are 7,000 protesters in his neighbourhood alone. He said that there were signs of neither the secret police nor the army and that protesters had not been fired on, contrary to some reports.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:11 am


Moe said:

MD @ 76,

I have no clue nor do I believe the commenters here have either. That is the problem- the subject is discussed so lightly and is geared in one direction or another based on subjective analysis and impressions.

There is nothing light about what is going on now. It is the question whether my kids will have a homeland to return to when they are older or not and what kind of homeland will they have.


June 3rd, 2011, 9:11 am


Sophia said:

Translated by Mideastwire.

On May 31, the state-controlled Teshreen daily carried the following editorial by Ezzeddin Darwich: “After the dust of the crisis in Syria dissipated and after the identity of the protesters for reform and that of the criminal and armed groups that are funded and directed from abroad was learned, some states which rushed to support what was happening in the country by calling it a popular revolution gradually started retreating in silence, maybe to save face. Some among these states which completely changed their positions have therefore started to approach the Syrian command far away from the media outlets, maybe to save face as well. And out of respect for the wish of these states and the ones who rushed to issue judgments or were duped, we will talk without referring to any names, while pointing to the fact that Syria is entitled to address what is worse than blame to some Arab brothers that hurriedly supported a non-existent “revolution,” and covered – whether intentionally or non-intentionally – criminal acts that occurred in Syria and could occur in their countries at any moment.

“This happened although Syria never hesitated to adopt any position serving their interests and was always behind them in sickness and in health. It would certainly be inappropriate to link these transformations that affected the positions of the latter states, to the popularity of the Syrian command that has become very obvious, but it would be useful to recall that what is right will eventually prevail and that lies never last. More importantly in this context is the fact that Syria overcame the crisis, and that the current talk about the existence of tensions has no impact on the ground. And for the record, we must say that the Syrian people are the ones who thwarted this crisis and all that it carried in terms of strife and premeditated organized crime with the most sophisticated means. The Syrians are the ones who besieged the culprits and the implicated, after they excluded them from their ranks and rendered them fragments representing no one but themselves.

“Consequently, it is not surprising to see that same notorious satellite channel of strife [Al-Jazeera] struggling with its newscasts, its reports, images and eyewitnesses who are speaking from anywhere around the world except from Syria and who are even stuttering when pronouncing the names of the Syrian cities and towns whose locations they do not know…” – Teshreen, Syria

June 3rd, 2011, 9:14 am


why-discuss said:


I agree totally with you about the tenets of respect in the ‘real’ religions not the one misused by politicians and “activists”. Unfortunately religions have been too often misused to achieve personal goals.

I NEVER NEVER use foul words… please show me when I did.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:15 am


syau said:


“La Tanabzo bil Alkab”….Does that also apply to you? Which Dr. did you call a liar?

June 3rd, 2011, 9:20 am


Syria no kandahar said:

First I did’t call you any name
Second you don’t seen calm
Third :why do you call others names:مشركين كفار غير المنعم عليهم ضالين اولاد القرده……does that calms you?

June 3rd, 2011, 9:24 am


Revlon said:

Names of Martyrs, whose bodies were brought to Hosiptal in 7ama
Bodies of others were evacuated by security forces.

Al Fati7a upon their souls,
May God bless their families with patience and empower them with patience!

The Syrian Revolution 2011 الثورة السورية ضد بشار الاسد

حماة ابي الفداء :: اسماء الشهداء الاحرار في حماة ابي الفداء اليوم ::
مجزرة ارتكبت في حماة اليوم : أكثر من ثلاثين شهيدا ومئات الجرحى :
الأسماء التي وردت حتى الآن
1) عبيدة أرناؤوط
2) أحمد السقا
3) نصوح الموسى
4) مرعي زيدان
5) أحمد زكار
6) من آل المدللة
7) من آل الدوري
من آل الصليعي
9) من آل الذكرى
10) علي أحمد البدر
هذا عدا الجثث التي سحبها الأمن والشبيحة إلى وسط الساعة المركزية بساحة العاصي
9 minutes ago

June 3rd, 2011, 9:32 am


majedkhaldoon said:

Why Discuss
in comment #50 you said
Did you smoke some pot before writing this?
I do not think this was appropriate in discussion

June 3rd, 2011, 9:35 am


majedkhaldoon said:

Syria no Kandahar
you said
Third :why do you call others names:مشركين كفار غير المنعم عليهم ضالين اولاد القرده……does that calms you?
I never said that, what you accuse me of saying is absolutely not true,this is deceiving on your part.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:38 am said:


Could you respond to my questions below just to rest my mind and feel peace again regarding Hamza’s horrific episode.

– Are you suggesting that if Hamza’s father accompanied his son on his conquest of delivery food to his relatives in the besieged city of Dara’a, the deadly outcome could have been avoided? such as that the Mukhabarat and Shabiha militia stooges would been intimated by the 65 years old father and therefore would refrain from committing the heinous crime?

– Do you conclude by your remarks that since the father didn’t take the necessary due diligence; therefore, Hamza’s ordeal is justified?

June 3rd, 2011, 9:40 am


trustquest said:

Why discuss,
Till now in Hama 32 martyrs and the hospital full of injured, and one official claim that there is 10 thousands protester. Revlon posted some of the killing and news is coming.
Twitter is working and the news coming second by second, there are great reporters proved their credibility and videos will come later as they say. God bless the souls of all who gave his life for the freedom of Syria.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:40 am


syau said:


This is one of your peaceful demonstrators (after Friday prayers)
Where a police officer is attacked by one of the sheikhs.

He must have had his wires crossed and thought religion told him to attack a police officer for no apparent reason. Very holy.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:41 am


why-discuss said:


Sorry, this is not an insult or a foul word… Please make the distinction. That was irony.
What Daleandersen wrote was totally gibberish, did you understand anything of what he wrote???

June 3rd, 2011, 9:45 am


Revlon said:

The revolution has succeded in revolutionising how the west view Arabs and Moslems.
One such example; Allahu Akbar chant used to be mentally associated with Islamic extremism!
Now, all western media watch unarmed civilians use the same chant to inspire courage, against extreme violence of a so-called “secular regime”.
The common denominator is defiance in the face of injustice!

June 3rd, 2011, 9:46 am


trustquest said:

دير الزور : تأكد استشهاد 8 متظاهرين احدهم طفل اسمه مرفق سليمان واصابات عشرات الجرحى في منطقة الجورة والمتظاهرين…

In Deir Alzour: 8 protesters been killed, one of them is a child, his name is Morgaq Solaiman, tens of injuries in the area of Joszeh

Hama Martyrs increased: Aljazeera eyewitness reports over 50 martyrs in #Hama Stand all together #Syria do not allow another Hama to happen again!

Video from Kar Nabel, today, Aleppo suburb.

June 3rd, 2011, 9:50 am


Syria no kandahar said:

Congratulation you have civilized the west,may be you can start charging them for using Allah can start introducing things similar to :علويه بالتابوت مسيحيه عابييروتyou think it will sell?

June 3rd, 2011, 10:02 am


HS said:

Here a transcript ( edited for comprehension ) of live Twitter messages posted by @ProfKahf who attended the Antalya conference!/ProfKahf
Poet, Syrian American academic

Start of transcript ______________

Antalya conference is electing a 31-member workgroup to continue coordination among the conference workshops.

Will the “Tribe List” or the “Kid List” win the vote-who to continue Antalya conference work?

Antalya conference :
List 1 includes Ikhwan , Kurdish , Christian , Alawite , human rights organization chiefs
List 2: includes new names , emerging activists

It’s just a vote for a conference workgroup,nothing more,but it was a thrill anyway

Lists were compiled and you voted for the Whole Shebang ( one list or the other ).
total votes 253: List1 : 203; List 50 .
Immediate breakdown ,with color pie graphics projected on Antalya conference hall screen.

Oddly, some folks found out they were on a List just 5 minutes before the vote (eg. me , Mariam Jalabi).
Antalya conference Sloppy process

Mariam & I were on (losing) Kid List.
Goodwill all’round .Khawla Yusef, Sondos Soleiman, Melhem Drooby, Ammar Qurabi, on winning list

Young activsts were promised 10 seats
List1 ended up with only 3 , including @Mohammad_Syria who withdrew to protest level of youth inclusion

AND again, it’s only a conference WORK group. The young gen’ers were saying “ we are who will end up doing the actual work anyway”

You know, people are always gonna say stuff like this when you have a conference .and If you don’t have it, you’re also damned.

Beauty vibes , solidarity (which is not the same as no diffs) predominate at this conference ,despite differences.

New blood @ Antalya #Syria conference, says
“ Regarding List 1: Fine , let well-known “Opposition Faces” be the slap to the regime ; we will do the work.”

End of transcript ____________________

Curiously, the word of Ikhwan is used instead of the short MB ( Muslims Brothers ).

It sounds like the “losing” young activists are starting to understand that the old sectarians are “winning” and that they have been manipulated with methods and practices which are not really democratic.

This self called Democratic Revolution in Syria is doomed to exclude the young activists when they will be no longer useful and it will end up with a sectarian State replacing the actual secular one.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:18 am


Syrian knight said:

To the clown who thinks that people have to be forced to demonstrate support for the president, and that only “AK47-wielding thugs” actually support him,

There are dozens and dozens of videos out there showing hundreds of thousands , and even millions of people demonstrating support for the president. None of them are thugs wielding AK47s. My family in Syria join these demonstrations, and they are not forced to do so. Stop lying.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:23 am


N.Z. said:


Fifty Hamwis massacred in one day. The children of the eighties are in full confrontation… after 30 years of the despicable massacre, same agenda and same audacity.

The horrific stories we heard, did not see, still haunts us. Good will prevail, and evil will be defeated and go down in history with the likes of all mass murderer. Like father like son. This time the outcome will be different.

This same brutality that kept the Assad mafia in power for forty years will bring them down, this time around.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:34 am


Shami said:

Thank for some scums here for showing us your minority syndrom that has been translated to a criminal behavior.
Shame on you and your menhebak khanzeer !

June 3rd, 2011, 10:37 am


syau said:

Michel Chossudovsky – Director, centre for research on globalisation- on Libya:“At this stage, NATO in consultation with the Pentagon is preparing a new phase of this war – a process of military escalation”…….So much for Obama’s speech regarding “No boots on the ground”.

On Syria: “Any kind of intervention in Syria would also be a derogation of international law”and “Armed insurgency was supported and financed by foreign powers, it’s well documented”. min. 4:19 onwards.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:37 am


Syria no kandahar said:

(the children of the eighties)? I guess we should expect to see them in power,you think they will take us back to the eighties or to the ice ages?
They will have very constructive agenda I bit.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:45 am


Syrian knight said:

You sectarian pigs are going to pay dearly after this is over and the president is still presiding over the nation. Anyone who calls what happened in Hama in 1982 a ‘travesty’ is the real sectarian criminal with clear Islamist agendas. The government kicked your Allahu Akbaring asses 30 years ago, and they will do it again, with the full support of the Syrian people you pretend to represent.

June 3rd, 2011, 10:58 am


HS said:

Al Azem

With reference to your article :
” According to some, Amr al-Azm (son of Sadiq) Amr Miqdad (presumably from the large Deraa family), and Muhammad al-Abdullah all played an important role in mediating and facilitating the discussion. They worked very hard to get the secular statement accepted.”

Amr Al-Azm, a Syrian-American history professor from Shawnee State University in Ohio.

Khalid al-Azm (1903-1965) (Arabic: خالد العظم‎) was a Syrian national leader and six-time Prime Minister, as well as Acting President (April 4 – September 16, 1941). He was a member of one of the most prominent political families in Syria, al-Azm (also known as Alazem or Al Azem), and the son of an Ottoman minister of religious affairs.

Saad Hariri is married to Lara Al-Azem .

a very “large Deraa family” indeed

June 3rd, 2011, 11:00 am


N.Z. said:

Is this regime forever? Is living in fear forever!!

Clowns are no other than those clapping and praising dictators. Clowns are those who idolize a family, carrying their posters and casting their grin.

A president is there to serve his country and people, not to kill and suppress on behalf of his masters.

Ask Maher Arrar, a Syrian Canadian who was send to Damascus to be tortured on behalf of the USA.

It is not you vs. us, we are together for a better future. A future were we can live with dignity and freedom, free from tyranny, corruption and oppression. Where we all live equally under the rule of law, not the rule of Assad.

Another Hama, in every part of Syria. Martyrs in the hundreds, wounded in the thousands. Torturing and beatings countless and you still want to support this mafia?

June 3rd, 2011, 11:07 am


syau said:


“A president is there to serve his country and people, not to kill and suppress on behalf of his masters”

That statement refers to Bush and Obama.

People are supposed to live in their country in peace, not take up arms, betray their country and proceed with a violent revolution full of murder, destruction and fabrication. They are not there to call on the international community to intervene. They are not there to pawn the lives of millions of people to further their agenda. They are not supposed to be co consipirators with enemies of their countries. They are not there to ruin the countries economy or terrorise fellow citizens.

They demanded reforms, their demands were heard and being implemented. They are not there to continue with violence regardless.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:20 am


Syrian knight said:

Don’t you dare include me in your “Us.” I am not part of you or your Islamist club. There is no dignity or freedom among the likes of you. Those who prostitute the deaths of Syrians for a political agenda against a well-loved government are not people. They are the same beings who ignore the deaths carried out by your ‘freedom fighters,’ ie, the brutal deaths of children that go unreported, the decapitation of police officers, the rape and killing of young girls for not joining the terrorist revolution, the murder of people simply for following another faith. Those people, who you call thugs and menaces, who support the government, are 23,000,000 people. You are spitting on the very people of Syria for not supporting Islamism and radical foreign policies of Western nations. Strange how the people who purportedly support freedom and democracy, are the same people who ignore the opinions of millions of Syrians who have different opinions from your own, and are killed for it. You’re not Syrian; you’re garbage. And if the government has to kill 30,000 of you Islamist terrorists so that the rest of the 23,000,000 of us can live peaceful, then so be it. You cannot rule any Arab country without an iron fist. That is the way you Islamists designed this region, and that is how we will rule you.

No to Sharia law! No to Islamism! No to foreign agendas! No to the removal of our secular and loved government! The Syrian people have spoken!

June 3rd, 2011, 11:23 am


norman said:

The president and the government have to use the two cards they have and these are , multiparty system and canceling article 8 , if these moves do not calm the street then it is obvious as i think it is that the goal is the destruction of Syria, then they should re establish emergency law and the high court and hit hard everywhere, Syria can not be a religious state , separation might be better than living under Sharia laws.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:26 am


syau said:

Reports emerging from Hama stating demonstrators are burning government buildings and cars, some are carrying weapons and shooting at the army, others are using children to prevent the security personnel from retaliating.

Only disgraceful people would take children to violent demonstrations and evil people would use them as human shields.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:32 am


N.Z. said:


After March, only your likes can be herded into the pen.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:42 am


N.Z. said:

#107, even the name you chose to post your comments under, is from a bygone era.

Wake up, remember we are in the 21st century. We are not living in the dark ages of Europe.

The End.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:57 am


Syrian knight said:

You Islamists are the ones living in the Stone Age, idiot.

June 3rd, 2011, 11:59 am


norman said:

I see that we are back in the time of insulting each other, I wonder how that is going to help.

June 3rd, 2011, 12:25 pm


Akbar Palace said:

When Only One Person Speaks for Everyone


Any news about the “amnesty” edict Bashar Assad announced a few days ago? How many people were released.

Syrian Knight said:

I am not part of you or your Islamist club.

Of the dozen or so youtube clips I’ve seen, I have not seen demonstrators with long beards, turbines, etc. The demonstrators look, typically like younger to middle-aged men wearing polo shirts and jeans. How do you know they are “islamist”?

Those who prostitute the deaths of Syrians for a political agenda against a well-loved government are not people.

How “well-loved” is the government? If what you are saying is true, an election with Assad winning would stop these protestors in their tracks.

They are the same beings who ignore the deaths carried out by your ‘freedom fighters,’ ie, the brutal deaths of children that go unreported, the decapitation of police officers, the rape and killing of young girls for not joining the terrorist revolution, the murder of people simply for following another faith.

Where is this information from? Have there been interviews with victims and their families?

Strange how the people who purportedly support freedom and democracy, are the same people who ignore the opinions of millions of Syrians who have different opinions from your own, and are killed for it.

“Opinions”? Whose opinion? How many? No one really knows. A vote would end this dispute.

You’re not Syrian; you’re garbage. And if the government has to kill 30,000 of you Islamist terrorists so that the rest of the 23,000,000 of us can live peaceful, then so be it.

This is beyond the pale. Why is freedom such a barrier to the Syrian government and its supporters?

You cannot rule any Arab country without an iron fist.

Some jews say that about the Palestinians. Does Israel get the same leeway you give your arab leaders? Why or why not?

No to Sharia law! No to Islamism!

Vote on it. Let the majority win.

No to foreign agendas! No to the removal of our secular and loved government! The Syrian people have spoken!

No, not really. Just you have.

June 3rd, 2011, 12:29 pm


daleandersen said:

This from the Vogue Magazine article on Asma:

“The 35-year-old first lady’s central mission is to change the mind-set of six million Syrians under eighteen, encourage them to engage in what she calls ‘active citizenship.’…The Assad household is run on wildly democratic principles. ‘We all vote on what we want, and where,’ she says.”

A totally normal totalitarian family, sort of like Adolph Hitler and Eva Braun. As for “active” citizenship. Well, Asma got her wish…

June 3rd, 2011, 12:41 pm


why-discuss said:

N.Z. said:

#107, even the name you chose to post your comments under, is from a bygone era.

What about yours : Number Zero?

June 3rd, 2011, 1:02 pm


Moe said:

Missed some posts and news while traveling. Very interesting was Mrs. Clinton’s concern about the murdered Syrian child since her own Mr. Clinton was responsible for the death of approx 500,000 Iraqi children while imposing the infamous embargo in the Nineties.

Here are the full UNICEF findings

and here are some excerpts:

” The surveys reveal that in the south and center of Iraq — home to 85 per cent of the country’s population — under-5 mortality more than doubled from 56 deaths per 1000 live births (1984-1989) to 131 deaths per 1000 live births (1994-1999). Likewise infant mortality — defined as the death of children in their first year — increased from 47 per 1000 live births to 108 per 1000 live births within the same time frame. The surveys indicate a maternal mortality ratio in the south and center of 294 deaths per 100,000 live births over the ten-year period 1989 to 1999. ”


” if the substantial reduction in child mortality throughout Iraq during the 1980s had continued through the 1990s, there would have been half a million fewer deaths of children under-five in the country as a whole during the eight year period 1991 to 1998. As a partial explanation, she pointed to a March statement of the Security Council Panel on Humanitarian Issues which states: “Even if not all suffering in Iraq can be imputed to external factors, especially sanctions, the Iraqi people would not be undergoing such deprivations in the absence of the prolonged measures imposed by the Security Council and the effects of war.”

June 3rd, 2011, 1:04 pm


why-discuss said:

Scene of hysteria in Deraa burning Iran, China and Russian flags
Posted by Al Jazeera

June 3rd, 2011, 1:11 pm


why-discuss said:


Media complicity in rising xenophobia
(Applicable to others issues than emigration}

The increasing commercialisation of the mainstream media and the profit imperatives it imposes seem to be at the core of the lowering of quality in media coverage of migration related issues.

“We certainly need some transparency rules to see where the funding is coming from and what are the political groups involved,” Aidan White, former general secretary of the International Federation of Journalists told participants.

“There is a crisis within the media, a financial crisis that is reducing the quality of training, of journalism, and ultimately journalists’ capacity to tell complex stories.”

Demands of the industry

There is a harsh, competitive environment that is leading editors and journalists to violate codes of ethics. “If anti-immigration writing allows the media to stay in business, the media will go for it,” Milica Pesic, executive director of the UK-based Media Diversity Institute warned.

June 3rd, 2011, 1:20 pm


Akbar Palace said:


That’s why multiple news sources is the best. With the internet, it’s pretty easy filtering through all the information. I think we all have a good understanding of the facts, yet, we still interpret things differently.

Scene of hysteria in Deraa burning Iran, China and Russian flags

You means it’s not the Zionist flag? I just saw a pig fly!


The UN article you linked to didn’t even remotely suggest the deaths were caused by any embargo or Mrs. Clinton, especially since there was NO embargo of food and medicine.

June 3rd, 2011, 2:05 pm


Murad said:


You are incredibly ignorant. The program was called oil for food. That means embargo on food. It also affected medicine. In Syria, although we hated Saddam, we saw the pictures of the thousands of children in Iraqi hospitals suffering needlessly due to shortage of medicine. Oil for food was in reality oil for ANYTHING. It was a criminal program that only affected the people of Iraq and the leaders of all nations who voted for it in UNSC should be charged with crimes against humanity.

June 3rd, 2011, 2:58 pm



بشار الأسد يقود الإصلاح فعلا: يفرغ السجون ويملأ المقابر

لم تمر أيام قليلة على العفو العام الذي وقعه الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد، حتى نفذت القوات الأمنية والعسكرية التي تأتمر به، مجزرة جديدة بحق عشرات السوريين، الذين ارتكبوا جرما لا يغتفر: المعارضة!
كان بشار الأسد، في السنوات السابقة يكتفي باعتقال معارضيه ووضعهم في السجون الى الأبد. تطور الرجل: أصبح يفضل قتلهم!
قبور ملأى، افضل من سجون مكتظة. مقابر جماعية “أرحم” من معتقلات أبدية!
فعلا ، بشار الأسد يقود الإصلاح!
فعلا، بشار الأسد يستمع الى النصائح!
عاشت الأمة العربية والإسلامية ، ففيها رؤساء يستحقون الخلود، في مزابل التاريخ!

June 3rd, 2011, 3:04 pm


atassi said:

34 dead in assault on Syria protest
Bassem Mroue
4 June 2011
AAP Bulletins
© 2011 Australian Associated Press Pty Ltd. All Rights Reserved

Syrian security forces opened fire during one of the largest anti-government protests so far in the 10-week uprising, and activists said at least 34 people were killed on Friday in the city of Hama, where thousands died in a failed 1982 revolt against the regime.

President Bashar Assad’s forces renewed their assault on towns seen as key to the demonstrations calling for an end to his family’s 40-year rule. The regime also cut Internet service across most of the country, a potentially dire blow for a movement that motivates people with graphic YouTube videos of the crackdown and loosely organises protests on Facebook pages.

The internet shutdown, if it continues, could also hamper the movement’s ability to reach the world outside Syria, where the government has severely restricted the media and expelled foreign reporters, making it nearly impossible to independently verify what is happening there.

Still many activists found alternate ways to log on and upload videos, such as satellite connections.

Rami Abdul-Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said tens of thousands of people were protesting in Hama when security forces opened fire. He said the Hama protest was among the largest yet in the uprising that began in mid-March.

He added that security forces shot dead one person in the village of Has in the northern province of Idlib.

“It is a real massacre. It is terrorism by itself and they want the people to stay silent,” said an activist in Hama.

The activist, who like many involved in the protests requested anonymity to avoid reprisals, said hospitals were calling on people to donate blood.

Syria’s state-run TV said three “saboteurs” were killed when police tried to stop them from setting a government building on fire in Hama. The Syrian government blames armed gangs and religious extremists for the violence.

In 1982, Assad’s father and predecessor Hafez Assad crushed a Sunni uprising by shelling Hama, killing 10,000 to 25,000 people, according to Amnesty International estimates.

As the Friday Muslim prayers ended, worshippers left the mosques and marched in cities, towns and villages. Syrian security forces dispersed some, mostly using batons, tear gas and water cannons and fired live ammunition in at least two locations in southern and northeastern towns.

Rights groups say more than 1100 people have been killed since the revolt against Assad erupted in mid-March.

An eyewitness in Hama reached by The Associated Press said there were around 150,000 demonstrators, an unprecedented number if confirmed. He described a chaotic scene, with security forces firing tear gas and live ammunition, and snipers shooting from the rooftops as people fled.

“There are many killed and wounded people, the hospital is full,” he said. “I fled the area but I can still hear sporadic gunfire.”

Syrian troops also pounded the central town of Rastan with artillery and gunfire for a seventh day, killing at least two people. The Local Coordination Committees, which helps organise and document Syria’s protests, says troops also opened fire on residents fleeing the town.

Friday’s deaths bring the toll in Rastan and nearby Talbiseh to 74 killed since last Saturday.

The opposition had called for Friday’s nationwide rallies to commemorate the nearly 30 children killed by Assad’s regime during the uprising.

In the southern city of Daraa, where the uprising began 10 weeks ago, scores of people rallied in the city’s old quarter, chanting “No dialogue with the killers of children”, an activist said.

The protesters were referring to a decree by Assad to set up a committee tasked with leading a national dialogue.

The regime also released hundreds of political prisoners this week after Assad issued a pardon. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said leading Kurdish politician Mashaal Tammo and Muhannad al-Hassani, who heads the Syrian Organisation for Human Rights, were released on Thursday.

Friday’s protests reached nearly throughout the country, from a village in the south to a city in the northeast. Protesters even gathered in several Damascus suburbs, though the capital has not seen the kind of disruption in many other cities.

Human rights activist Mustafa Osso said Syrian security forces opened fire on Friday at demonstrators in the southern village of Inkhil, but it was not clear if there were any casualties.

A Syrian activist said authorities cut Internet service in several parts of the country, apparently to prevent activists from uploading footage of the protests and the government crackdown and from organising new resistance. In Damascus, several people contacted over the phone said the Internet was down.

Video surfaced earlier this week on YouTube, Facebook and websites of Hamza al-Khatib, a 13-year-old boy whose tortured and mutilated body was returned to his family weeks after he disappeared during the protests.

The boy has since become a symbol to Syria’s uprising and many people carried his posters during anti-regime rallies this week.

Australian Associated Press Pty Ltd

June 3rd, 2011, 4:45 pm



Yesterday I had to go a village south of Damascus. I found moukhabarat points of control all along the road, specially at the airport intersections, some 4 or 5. In each one we were stopped and asked identification documents. No words and no questions about reasons of our trip. Most members of security apparatus on the road were youngsters 17-22 years old maximum, specially those with sofisticated weapons and all of them were ready to rush any car that do not respect the stop signal. It was impressing, even in Lebanon in the years inmediately after civil war I had never seen something similar. In general it was a peaceful trip but you feel that there is a state of war. All Assad´s soldiers are ready to kill as much as the situation requires. They are convinced that they are looking for terrorists or arms smugglers. And one has the feeling that any protest against their semi-god will be reduced by bullets.

June 3rd, 2011, 4:51 pm


Atassi said:

Syrians Mass in Hama, Other Cities as State Cuts Internet
By Nour Malas in Antalya, Turkey, and Christopher Rhoads in New York
3 June 2011
The Wall Street Journal Online
The Wall Street Journal – Print and Online

Syria’s government took new steps to pull the plug on persistent antiregime protests, cutting off most Internet and mobile data connections Friday as tens of thousands of people braved lethal consequences to participate in marches throughout the country.

Security forces killed at least 34 people in Hama, where activists said 50,000 or more people marched in the city’s largest protests yet. The march and several others across the country came a day after the U.S. and opposition activists raised the pressure on President Bashir al-Assad to stop the deadly crackdown on demonstrations.

Wrapping up meetings this week in the Turkish city Antalya, antiregime activists called on the president to step down immediately and elected an advisory body to help lead a support strategy for the street protest movement, giving further shape to the three-month-old uprising.

Internet services were cut off Friday in most parts of Syria’s largest cities, including Damascus, Aleppo, Homs and Hama, leaving protesters without their prime means to plan demonstrations and report on the government’s response to them. Much of Syria’s street movement has been documented through accounts and camera-phone videos posted online.

Beginning at 6:35 a.m. Syria time Friday, about two-thirds of all Syrian networks were cut off from the global Internet, according to Renesys Corp., a firm in Manchester, N.H., that studies Internet traffic flows. Blocked networks included high-speed data connections for mobile phones used by ordinary citizens. Websites of the Syrian oil ministry and the government-owned telecommunications monopoly weren’t affected, according to Renesys.

A Syrian government-backed website confirmed the Internet had been shut down. The day’s move came in contrast to Syria’s decision in February to lift its 2007 ban on social networking sites, which allowed people to access websites including Facebook and YouTube for the first time without proxies.

Regimes in Egypt, Libya and Bahrain have tried to gain the upper hand over the recent, fast-moving demonstrations by unplugging or partially blocking the Internet. In some cases, most notably in Egypt, the action appeared to heighten the unrest by prompting more angry protesters into the streets.

“You are reaching a point of no return when you do this kind of stuff,” said Earl Zmijewski, a Renesys vice president.

Friday’s attacks on protestors appeared to be the deadliest in Hama, site of a deadly 1982 government attack on an Islamist uprising. The deaths came as security forces gunned down protesters coming out of two mosques after the Friday Islamic prayer, according to a doctor reached by satellite phone.

“There were no warning shots or tear gas this time—they just opened fire immediately and the first row of people dropped like flies,” the doctor said. He said the hospital where he worked was treating hundreds of injured, while security forces blocked access to another hospital in the city by surrounding it and opening fire on approaching cars.

Large demonstrations also emerged in Damascus and its sububs, the central city of Homs, in Qamishli and Deir ez-Zour in the northeast, Idlib in the northwest and three towns surrounding Deraa in the South, according to Ahmad al-Raad, an administrator of the Syrian Revolution 2011 Facebook page, who gathered witness testimonies by satellite phone.

Activists said three people were killed in al Rastan, north of Homs, and two in Idlib.

In the western coastal city of Banias, some 300 protesters marched out of two mosques, with security forces beating people and detaining most, a resident said by telephone. The protests followed Thursday’s release of 10 detainees there, including the head of the municipality, following a general amnesty for political prisoners called for by the president, the resident said.

Activists have largely shrugged off Mr. Assad’s amnesty announcement, which was followed by attacks by security forces and tanks on towns surrounding Homs and the southern town of Hirak. As Syria’s uprising moves past its third month, Mr. Assad appears to be repeating his early response to protests, wavering between deadly repression and offers of reform.

“It’s ink on paper,” said the resident of Banias, on a national dialogue committee set up by the president Wednesday that includes vice president Farouk al-Sharaa. “We’ve heard of committees and commitments before.”

In the Turkish coastal town of Antalya, some 300 activists elected their own committee, a 31-member advisory body to help direct and finance a support strategy for the protest movement. The body would in turn elect a nine-member committee to lead efforts on international diplomacy, logistical, legal and humanitarian support.

A group of the delegates, including rights activists and lawyers, will head from Turkey to the Hague to present what they say constitutes evidence for crimes against humanity by Mr. Assad to the International Criminal Court.

The three-day meeting’s closing statement, issued Thursday, called on Mr. Assad to step down immediately and hand over power, as dictated by the constitution, to Mr. al-Sharaa until a new constitution is drafted, a transitional national council is elected and democratic elections are set.

The activists, many participating in an electoral process for the first time and meeting opposition groups long separated by exile, disagreed on the potential role of religion in a new Syria, debating between whether they sought a “secular” or “civil” state. They deliberated intensely on the declaration’s wording, in the end crafting an assurance that the new constitution they sought would protect the rights of Syria’s multiple sects and ethnicities under a “civil state and a pluralistic, parliamentary and democratic regime.”

Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood, which made a last-minute strong showing at the meeting and is represented on the advisory body voted in by activists, had argued against calling for a secular state. Despite disagreements, and calls from Syrian dissidents inside the country that exiled activists couldn’t represent the opposition, the meeting was the first concrete step toward uniting the broad-based antiregime movement since the start of Syria’s uprising.

Activists agreed that protesters were determined to stay on the streets, despite a rising death toll estimated at more than 1,000 people, and the potential that Mr. Assad won’t step down even amid increased international or legal pressure.

“We know we’re in this for the long haul,” said one 24-year-old protest organizer who snuck into Turkey from Syria and said he is unlikely to be able to return. “It’s a matter of patience now.”

Write to Nour Malas at and Christopher Rhoads at

June 3rd, 2011, 4:53 pm


jad said:

#129, How come you are able to write from Syria where there is no internet connection?

خدمة الانترنت تغيب عن كامل سوريا يوم الجمعة ..

شهدت سوريا يوم الجمعة انقطاعا تاما لخدمات الانترنت فيها على كافة المخدمات وبكل طرق الاتصال من خلال الخطوط الارضية والخليوية.

وتلقت سيريانيوز العديد من الاتصالات من كافة المناطق التي تؤكد انقطاع خدمة الانترنت فيها ، كما غابت الخدمة عن مكاتبها في دمشق وحلب واللاذقية كما غابت عن جميع المدن السورية بحسب مراسليها هناك.
وهذه المرة الاولى منذ بدء احداث الاحتجاجات التي تغيب الخدمة فيها ، فيما لم يتبين اذا كان السبب عطل فني ام انه اجراء متخذ لغايات امنية.
وفشلت محاولات سيريانيوز بالاتصال بالمعنين للوقوف على اسباب القطع.


2011-06-03 21:05:12

June 3rd, 2011, 5:09 pm



#131 I said yesterday. Not where I am now. Not today. Not Here. Not now. Variables Space-Time. Do you understand them? While you are so comfortably in a developed country getting profit, other people sacrify themselves or at least move and know what is really happening.

June 3rd, 2011, 5:14 pm


Syrian knight said:

What happened? Earlier today I was reading that at least 50 people, and possibly dozens more, were killed today. Now the number has dropped to 34? Are the con artists running out of bodies to show? Maybe they can dig up some of the old ones and pretend that they are newly-killed people in anticipation for next Friday’s Islamic protest.

In any case, Hama, huh… You would think that the Muslim Brotherhood would have learned by now. Well, hopefully we don’t have to have a repeat of what the terrorists brought upon their own city in 1982, but if that is what has to be done, then I fully support the effort, I expect to stand in one end of the city, and be able to see the opposite end of it. Then maybe the Muslim Brotherhood will try again in 30 years, When Hafez al-Assad is the new president of Syria.

June 3rd, 2011, 5:15 pm


Amir in Tel Aviv said:

The Children’s Freedom Friday drew more protesters to the streets, than any previous Friday. Try to deny it. The protest intensifies to the dismay of this junta. I would like to ask Bouthaina from her hiding place, whether she still thinks the regime has the upper hand. This shooting on people becomes surreal. What good do they think can come out of it? For them? for the people? for the future of this junta? did they lose their ability to think? what motivates them now? revenge? fear? hysteria? madness? panic?

June 3rd, 2011, 5:25 pm


jad said:

#132, Did I hit your ‘lie’ nerve or something.
“other people sacrify themselves” That means you? What a genuine hero!
BTW, The youngest soldier/security person in Syria is 18 not 17 as you wrote.

On Aljazeera the number of Syrians we lost in Hama alone today is 25

June 3rd, 2011, 5:28 pm


majedkhaldoon said:

Syrian knight said:
” When Hafez al-Assad is the new president of Syria.”
Hopefully it will be this year.
You want to level Hama,destroy it all,you are saying that you want to kill all the people in Hama,There is no sense having dialogue with people like you.
First the name is SNP,then it changed to Sourie,then sourie 333,now it is different name, what are you hiding in changing your name a lot?

Another massacre on friday,over fifty syrian died,The violence could not be blamed on the people , the intransigence and arrogance of the regime,is the cause, the people want freedom,they have full right to ask to be free,,the regime is the one who is depriving them from their freedom, it is God given right,The false security , the dictators say they provide,is now showing that was false security it was not real,the violence is due to oppression,the people will explode after a while, and that is what they did
Bashar wants to talk to the Kurd,they should refuse, no talk to dictator,he must go, he and his family and the one support them,

June 3rd, 2011, 5:43 pm


Syrian knight said:

Al Jazeera said 25? They are usually the type of organization that doubles the highest estimate. Their Syria coverage has been terribly biased and full of lies


I am neither of those people. You Islamists have shown that you are not worth talking to. Every time the president gives into your demands, you move the goal posts and make up completely new goals so you can keep on protesting. All you want is Sunni Islamic domination of Syria. You are con artists, and the people of Syria know it.

June 3rd, 2011, 5:49 pm


Sophia said:

Dear Jad,

It seems that lying is a common feature in the comment section of this blog. Please have a look at the follwowing (I know that others don’t, they are not interested in reading but in writing their rigid opinions unsullied by facts over and over…)

An interesting link over at FLC on Kerry and Assad.

June 3rd, 2011, 6:23 pm


syau said:

According to there has been a cessation in army activity in Rastan as armed gangs have surrendered to army personnel.

June 3rd, 2011, 7:18 pm


Mohamed kanj said:

Can someone please tell me how the opposition plans to overthrow the current syrian government and it’s president ? I just cannot see it happening. Their is absolutely no momentum with these protests. They are only able to gather together I’n large numbers on Fridays. Unlike Egypt and Tunisia they protested and gathered 7days a week . Their is and will never be any support from the Syrian army. Their hasn’t been any detections from government ministers. They still have no been able to gain support from the upper and middle class Sunnis ; christians; alawites;druze;kurds. It is impossible. Are they just going to keep on protesting every Friday after prayer and keep repeating the same chants And
slogans. they are brainwashed zombies with no objective or right minded clear goals

June 3rd, 2011, 9:45 pm


Game On; The Opposition is Back | Syria said:

[…] out the Syria Comment page for good coverage of the meeting here and here; also try here and […]

June 4th, 2011, 12:47 am


A new opposition for Syria | Fadwa al-Hatem — War & Peace in the Middle East said:

[…] and a vision for a post-Assad democratic Syria. Most worryingly, the Brotherhood remained quite staunch in its opposition to a secular future government, and only gave its consent much later in the […]

June 7th, 2011, 6:32 am


Syria: A Way Forward said:

[…] little political maturity and are perceived – despite the efforts of a few emerging leaders to say all the right things – to have a vision for the country derived only from anger […]

July 3rd, 2011, 12:48 am


Syria Freedom Runners said:

[…] activists have shown little political maturity and are perceived – despite the efforts of a few emerging leaders to say all the right things – to have a vision for the country derived only from anger towards […]

July 5th, 2011, 5:43 pm


Syria Comment » Archives » Syrians Scared and Angered by Sectarian Fighting said:

[…] is the flash point. The Istanbul Opposition Conference selected a leadership different from the Antalya conference six weeks earlier. Lack of unity among the opposition threatens to lead the uprising astray even as it accuses the […]

July 19th, 2011, 11:01 pm


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