Manaf Tlas Defection Confirmed: His Statement from Paris - Syria Comment

Manaf Tlas Defection Confirmed: His Statement from Paris

Bashar al-Assad, left, and Manaf Tlass in Kuwait City in 1999.

How important is the Tlass Defection

Absolutely important – The Tlass family has been at the heart of the regime from the beginning. They are the keystone of the Sunni-Alawi alliance that has cemented the regime for 4 decades.

Abdul Halim Khaddam and the Tlass family were the two leading Sunni families in the state from the beginning, when Hafiz al-Assad, the architect of the regime, built the structures that have endured since. Bashar preserved the blueprint drawn up by his father.

Vice President Khaddam defected in 2005. His departure sent a shudder through the regime, but this time is different. The Tlas defection sends the sign that the regime is done for. No longer is this uprising merely about angry young men in the countryside. It has reached to the very top. The elite Sunnis are looking for the exit door – but it will be hard to replicate this defection. Manaf got the golden parachute into Paris. His family is all out – his father, brother, wife and children. He planned this carefully. He has the power and the means.

Other generals have no bodyguards, no visas, no money…. It will be a long and painful process for most to defect.

What is more the Alawite officers have their backs to the wall.

The regime will not just collapse. This is not “The Tipping Point” but it is very significant for morale. It sends a message: the game is up.

[End of Landis analysis]

Manaf Tlass’ declaration As issued by international press and media [Sent to me by a reporter for verification. It sounds correct but I cannot verify]

As issued by international press and media, I have just left Syria.
With the will to remain faithful to my military principles and loving feelings towards Syria, I have always tried to fulfill my duty with rightness, in order to preserve unity for Syria and its people.
I did not joined the armed forces to see this army harm its own people, without giving systematically a chance to political solutions.
Thus, because I was in complete opposition with the unjustified violence and crimes committed by Assad’s regime in the past months, I was progressively dismissed from my place of duty in the armed forces.
Today, I call for all my comrades in armed forces, whatever their rank in the hierarchy, who are dragged into this fight against their Syrian fellows and against their own ideals, to end supporting this regime.
I recognize the legitimacy of the fight of the opposition members to the regime, particularly the ones on the ground. In this respect, let me be grateful to those who made it possible for me to leave the Syrian territory where my own person and family were threatened.
In the coming days, I will make a statement on my motives and the possibilities that the future offers me.
Long life to Syria!
General Manaf Tlas
وفقا لما بدأت الصحافة الدولية ذكره لقد غادرت سوريا منذ لحظات قليلة.
حفاظا على مبادئي العسكرية وعلى حبي للوطن، لقد حاولت دائما القيام بواجبي حرصا على الحفاظ على وحدة الوطن والشعب طبقا لما يمليه ضميري علي. لم أدخل المؤسسة العسكرية مؤمنا يوما أنني أرى هذا الجيش يواجه شعبه، وخاصة أن الحل السياسي لم يستنزف بعد.
ويجدر بالذكر أن سبب امتناعي عن تأدية مها مي ومسؤولياتي داخل الجيش يكمن في أنني لم أوافق إطلاقا على سير العمليات الإجرامية والعنف الغير مبرر الذي سار عليه نظام الأسد منذ أشهر عديدة.
فاليوم أدعو زملائي العسكريين مهما تكن رتبهم والذين ينجرون في قتال ضد شعبهم ومبادئهم إلى عدم تأييد هذا المصار المنحرف. وأقر بشرعية النضال الذي تقوده المعارضة وخاصة
على الأرض. وأشكر كل من مكنوني من مغادرة الأراضي السورية التي أصبحت فيها حياتي وحياة أقاربي مهددة وفي خطر. وبعد أيام قليلة سأتكلم بشكل مفصل عن دوافعي وخطواتي نحو المستقبل.
عاشت سوريا أرضا وشعبا !
العميد مناف طلاس
 General’s Defection Confirmed as Syria Opposition Meets
By DAN BILEFSKY, ALAN COWELL and NEIL MacFARQUHAR, July 6, 2012 – New York Times

PARIS — Opponents of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria met here on Friday with their international sponsors to intensify pressure for his removal, buoyed by word that Brig. Gen. Manaf Tlass, a commander in the elite Republican Guard, and a member of the Damascus aristocracy, had defected and fled the country….

“Here you have more than 100 countries meeting to support the Syrian resistance with further sanctions, with humanitarian funds and with the demand that Bashar al-Assad be brought before the courts,” Mr. Fabius told Europe 1 radio earlier….

Russia’s foreign minister, Sergey V. Lavrov, Tuesday called the “Friends of Syria” forum redundant after the weekend talks in Geneva, saying that the participation of more than 100 countries in Paris made it “impossible to have serious dialogue.”…

“The main elephant in the room is the lingering divisions among the Syrian opposition,” said one senior official. “The main challenge is to get the Syrian opposition to act in concert. They still need to get their act together.”

But Ms. Kadmani, the Syrian National Council spokeswoman, insisted that the Syrian opposition was united over the goal of overthrowing Mr. Assad and that criticism of the opposition was being used by the west to distract from its own lack of political will. “Criticizing the opposition is being used as a pretext by the international community to distract from their own divisions and lack of determination,” she said….

Senior Syrian military officer reportedly defects to Turkey  – Liz Sly – Wash Post

ANTAKYA, Turkey — Pro-government news outlets in Syria reported Thursday that a powerful military officer and longtime close associate of the Assad family had fled to Turkey, in what could be the first sign of a crack in the regime’s inner circle.

Has the bloody ‘Arab Spring’ been a success?
by Nikolaos van Dam in Global Perspectives

I have, from the beginning, been opposed to the phrase “Arab Spring,” especially because it was hailed in its initial stages (and also later on) so over-enthusiastically – almost naively – and positively. It must have been obvious enough to those who know the Middle East that it would proceed very differently and be far less rose-colored than what was popularly believed. The enthusiasm in the West was often a form of wishful thinking – and it still is – even though the moment where everything appeared so promising is gradually being replaced by expectations that are clearly a lot less favorable and more realistic. Unfortunately, the so-called Arab Spring cannot yet really be called a success for any country, although some totalitarian regimes have been dismantled. This, of course, can be considered an important achievement in itself…..

It can, rationally speaking, also be argued that in some cases it would have been wiser to do nothing or not intervene rather than do the wrong thing with disastrous consequences….. In the West, one is often unjustly fearful of a democratic Islamic movement, thinking that Islam and democracy are incompatible, whereas a country such as Indonesia provides a strong example that Islam and democracy go very well together…..

It would be more likely that Assad’s authoritarian regime is followed by another one, the main difference being (hopefully) that the new regime might be more willing to effectuate drastic political reforms…..

For Top Syrian Defector, a Path Less Traveled
Wall Street Journal

Here is the wikileaks first e mails

Syria opposition rifts give world excuse not to act
Published: Wednesday, 4 Jul 2012 | CAIRO (Reuters)

A brawl at a meeting of the Syrian opposition this week in Cairo put on display the divisions among those struggling to oust President Bashar al-Assad and provides an excuse for world powers who have been wary of intervention to sit on their hands.

The row that spilled into the marble-lined corridors of a five-star Cairo hotel on Tuesday came at the end of a two-day meeting sponsored by the Arab League that had begun with appeals from Arab and Turkish ministers for a show of unity.

There was little sign of solidarity from the outset as the 200 or so members of Syrian opposition groups and activists, ranging from Islamists to secularists, most of them living in exile, haggled over the shape of a post-Assad Syria.

“Such disputes will tarnish the image of the opposition and destroy the spirits of our rebel fighters inside,” said activist Gawad al-Khatib, 27, who watched in tears of frustration when Kurdish activists stormed out after trading blows with rivals inside the meeting hall. Opponents shouted abuse as they left….The Cairo meeting, one of the biggest such gatherings of Assad’s opponents, was supposed to help rally the opposition around broad principles for a new Syria and to appoint a follow-up committee that would have acted as their face to the world.

It fell short of that. They could not agree on a committee and many left with reservations about the main documents presented to them, which outlined principles on governing Syria in transition and drafting a new constitution……

The groups all backed broad principles for a future democratic state, even if agreement on details eluded them. “We can handle this later on,” he said. After Kurds stormed out, Radwan Ziadeh, a leader in the opposition Syrian National Council, said fresh discussions would be held on Wednesday evening to bridge gaps. But the overture was rejected by Kurdish National Council leader Morshed Mashouk, who said he would not sit with “those narrow-minded people.”

The senior diplomat sought to explain the often heated sessions and short tempers by saying: “Everyone wants everything now. When they meet they all have their grievances”.

But he said world powers, whatever their worries, could not afford to stand idle. “This is dangerous. If the situation stays like this, we fear having a failed state in Syria,” he said.

White and Tabler at WINEP on Tlas defection

…Going forward, Washington should consult closely with Sunni figures who choose to leave the regime, as they can play a key role in bringing Assad’s rule to an end. Sunnis such as Tlass could also serve as important figures in a post-Assad transitional government, able to keep the peace while elections are held for a new democratic Syria. Although Tlass and those like him may have blood on their hands, the opposition, which repesents the Sunni majority, would likely support them rather than any Alawite candidates Assad puts forward to participate in the “transitional government” outlined by Kofi Annan’s plan.

Halting Syrian Chaos by Robert D. Kaplan and Kamran Bokhari
July 4, 2012 | Stratfor

What if Syrian President Bashar al Assad really goes? There is an assumption in the West that the way to win a strategic victory over Iran and improve the human rights situation inside Syria is to remove the Syrian leader. It is true that Iran’s prospects of keeping Syria as its own Mediterranean outpost are probably linked with the survivability of al Assad’s regime. But his removal might well hasten the slide into chaos within Syria and in adjacent Lebanon, rather than slow it. Al Assad’s departure could even ignite a disintegration of the Syrian power structure into various gangs and militias…..

One can also argue that from a human rights perspective, chaos can be worse than authoritarianism. To wit, the record of decapitation as it refers to fierce authoritarian regimes in the Islamic world is grim. Libya has slid into low-level chaotic violence in which the writ of the central government is nonexistent throughout broad reaches of the country. Nearby Mali has erupted into anarchy — a situation ignited by regime change in Libya. The administration of George W. Bush decapitated the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq, an act that cost perhaps 200,000 Iraqi lives over a few short years, even as Saddam had directly killed perhaps four times that many over the previous third of a century.

Then there are the examples of the Soviet Union and Yugoslavia. When the Soviet state collapsed, it led to a rash of ethnic and regional wars across the Caucasus and Central Asia — tens of thousands of people were killed in Tajikistan alone — while in Yugoslavia, ethnic war resulted in 140,000 lost lives. Remember that the dynastic regime of the al Assads in Syria was built on an east bloc model during the height of the Cold War….

Regional stability and moral considerations both require a transitional phase in Syria, not cold turkey democracy. Cold turkey democracy coupled with regime collapse in Syria, given the historical record, risks bloody anarchy. And a transitional phase may require an implicit deal between the United States and Iran. Iran and the United States have a record of dealing with each other behind the scenes; the Bush administration and the ayatollahs did likewise in Iraq even as they fought each other there.

The Iranians, like the Americans, are already looking beyond al Assad. They are identifying generals and leading businessmen who could rule in his place and maintain the overall regime structure. There may come a point where American and Iranian interests in Syria overlap at least to the extent of agreeing on al Assad’s replacement. Though, to repeat, the situation in Syria will probably have to further deteriorate before reaching that stage. Iran has to be made to feel that al Assad is no longer an option. We are not there yet. The fact that Syrian air defenses were able to shoot down a Turkish plane without incurring a military response means al Assad is still formidable.

The real horse-trading, if and when it comes, may involve Turkey and Iran. Turkey wants to replace the entire regime structure; Iran wants the opposite. That’s why both Ankara and Tehran will need to compromise, identifying high-ranking Syrians, probably military, who will protect each country’s interests and upon whom a new regime can be based. If Turkey and Iran can reach some sort of agreement, it can then be blessed by both the United States and Russia…..

Syria’s situation is dire. From both a moral and geopolitical point of view, fighting a proxy war with Iran and Russia there is less desirable for the United States than reaching out to them.

One Last Chance for Diplomacy as Syria Declares a Civil War
Syria’s Last Chance – Paul Salem – Carnegie

op-ed, National | Paul Salem writes that this is the last chance for diplomacy in Syria. If the country does not step back from the brink, the depth and breadth of violence will increase dramatically…..

Moscow is in close contact with the Syrian regime as well as with hundreds of officers in the Russian-trained and equipped security forces. It will also host the Syrian opposition later this month. There is still a chance that Russia can engineer a resolution.

Although there has been much talk of a “Yemeni model”, what Russia is contemplating might be closer to an Egyptian model: in Egypt, the armed forces assisted in the “soft” removal of the president and his inner circle while preserving their own power and continuing to dominate the political, security and constitutional processes.

In any case, if Mr Putin is able to translate the Geneva communique into results on the ground, the worst will be avoided and the country might actually enter into a managed transition.

Jihadists claim Syria attacks
By ELIZABETH A. KENNEDY, Associated Press – 1 hr 7 mins ago

BEIRUT – An al-Qaida-inspired group claimed responsibility for dozens of attacks across Syria, the latest evidence that extremists are exploiting the chaos to make inroads in another Middle Eastern country.

The Syrian regime has long blamed terrorists for the 16-month-old revolt, and the presence of al-Qaida groups creates new difficulties for Arab and Western countries trying to help force President Bashar Assad from power.

The opposition and the rebel Free Syrian Army deny having any links to terrorism, and say they do not have the desire or the capabilities to carry out massive suicide bombings and other al-Qaida-style attacks.

On Tuesday, the SITE monitoring group, which tracks jihadist chatter on the Internet, said the Al-Nusra Front released statements on extremist websites in late June claiming the attacks were to avenge the killings of Syrians by the government.

One of the attacks targeted a pro-regime television station in the town of Drousha, south of the capital, Damascus, on June 27. Seven people were killed in the attack on Al-Ikhbariya TV.

Al-Nusra said the station is an arm of the regime and the attack sought to make the station “taste from the cup of torture” and force every member of the regime to wonder: “When will my turn come?” The statement included photos of 11 men it said were kidnapped in the attack.

More Syrian Circassian refugees arrive in the North Caucasus – Jamestown Foundation

….On June 22, two groups of Circassian refugees from Syria, totaling 31 people, arrived in Nalchik. Nine of them were resettled in the homes of relatives, while the rest were accommodated in resort hotels. Beslan Khagazhei, a member of the Peryt organization, told the Kavkazsky Uzel (Caucasian Knot) website that more than 220 refugees have arrived in Kabardino-Balkaria since the start of the civil war in Syria (http://www.kavkaz-uzel.ru, June 23).

On June 18, the seventh Circassian Day took place at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. Walter Richmond, an American historian who is about to publish a book about the Circassian genocide, delivered a speech at the gathering. He assessed Circassian losses during the acute phase of genocide inflicted by the Russian Empire on the Circassian lands. “Based upon all the documentary evidence, my conservative estimate is that between 320,000 and 400,000 people died in the period October 1863-April 1864,” he said. “Many more died en route to Turkey and after their arrival there, increasing the estimated death toll to a minimum of 625,000. Assuming an 1860 population of 1.5 million and an annual growth rate of two percent, the current population of Circassia would be approximately thirty million. The actual Circassian population worldwide, by contrast, is between four and six million, with only 700,000 living in the Russian Federation.” Richmond concluded his speech with a call to the international community to become aware of the tragic events that took place 150 years ago near the planned site of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

CNN: Al-Assad: Don’t compare us to Egypt
2012-07-05

The Syrian president says his country’s opposition movement has failed to duplicate the kinds of mass protests that unfolded in other Arab nations.

The Little Syrian Town That Could
The amazing protest posters of occupied Kafr Anbel.
BY DAVID KENNER | JULY 5, 2012

Gary Gambil, “Bashar Assad can always find refuge with the Alawites” (National Post, Toronto)

…..For Assad, staying and fighting to the bitter end doesn’t mean going down with the ship. When the day comes that he can no longer stave off the fall of Damascus, his minions can easily fall back to Alawite areas in the mountains and coastal plains of northwestern Syria. Tehran, preferring a fragmented Syria to a unified hostile Syria, will happily continue providing them with arms and financing. Even with Turkey and the Arab Gulf states supporting opposing proxies, former regime forces and affiliated Alawite paramilitaries (shabiha) can hold out for years. Having intervened extensively in Lebanon for decades, they have the perfect skill set for surviving the Lebanonization of Syria.

…..When the time comes, Assad won’t have much difficulty rallying Alawites (and many other non-Sunnis) behind the de facto cantonization of Syria. Given centuries of pre-existing Sunni hostility to heterodox Muslims and the scale of regime atrocities during the past four decades, Alawite fears of violent retribution are well-grounded and ripe for exploitation. Because the regime has heavily suppressed independent Alawite religious and social institutions over the years, the community has little capacity to mobilize around alternative leaders. By hook or by crook, Assad will lead it into the abyss.

Comments (312)


Juergen said:

sounds like he is up for higher aims…

a good day for Syria

July 6th, 2012, 11:41 am

 

bronco said:

Juergen

If he has higher aims, Tlass may create even more divisions in the already deeply divided opposition.

July 6th, 2012, 11:52 am

 

zoo said:

General Fayez Amro of the Free Syrian Army [FSA] : A single foreign air strike is the solution.

http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=30235


He added “if the regime was subject to a single [foreign] air strike, this would save a lot of lives in Syria. This has become an international humanitarian crisis, and it is clear that what is happening in Syria is the result of the blatant Russian and Iranian interference, supporting the al-Assad regime with ammunition and manpower, not to mention the Hezbollah mercenaries…so what is wrong with international intervention?”

He added “what is preventing military intervention, particularly if the Russian Shabiha is defending the regime?

July 6th, 2012, 12:05 pm

 

Stick to the truth said:

Manaf Tlas Defection Confirmed: His Statement from Paris

Manaf has deserted and not defected after been degraded!
وأشكر كل من مكنوني من مغادرة الأراضي السورية التي أصبحت فيها “حياتيوحياة أقاربي مهددة وفي خطر”

and the possibilities that the future offers me.

They will never come back!

By the way Mr. Landis, your yesterdays posting is very much hollywood like.
Are they going to film this story of the handsome brave officer

July 6th, 2012, 12:07 pm

 

Tara said:

Bravo Munaf Tlass!

July 6th, 2012, 12:08 pm

 

Stick to the truth said:

3. zoo said:
General Fayez Amro of the Free Syrian Army [FSA] : A single foreign air strike is the solution.

Obviously desperate…..
Just one strike please!!!

July 6th, 2012, 12:14 pm

 

zoo said:

Egypt on the path of Turkey in the 80s

http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=30231

The power play since Mubarak’s overthrow suggests Egypt is moving steadily towards a Turkey-style accommodation between a powerful army and an Islamist movement that gradually shifts its people into the institutions of government.

Egyptian General Mamdouh Shahin said there was no question that the army would decide the future balance of power.

“The constitutional decree remains the exclusive authority of the military council. Nothing will change this,” he told Reuters, adding that, for now, the army would act as a balance between the government and the president.

July 6th, 2012, 12:20 pm

 

bronco said:

Now that Tlass ‘defected’ he is forgiven for all his crimes and
the SNC will cooperate with him.

That sounds more like a cheap trick from the opposition to encourage more defections.
What guarantees Tlass has that once he ‘helps’ the opposition in their ‘revolution’ he will not be indicted and executed, or simply murdered?

July 6th, 2012, 12:34 pm

 

zoo said:

Long hair and beard? Any photos of him in Paris?

“Months later, he gave up his military uniform and opted for civilian clothing. He set up residence in Damascus, where he let his beard and hair grow long.””

http://news.yahoo.com/defection-syrian-general-significant-us-154333816.html

July 6th, 2012, 12:43 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

How important is the Tlass Defection

Absolutely important – The Tlass family has been at the heart of the regime from the beginning. They are the keystone of the Sunni-Alawi alliance that has cemented the regime for 4 decades.
__________________________________________________________________

I am not even going to waste my time digging up your hoopla on SC and how important was Khaddam departure you made out of hot air. Americans are so naive.

July 6th, 2012, 12:44 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco

Then you admit now that the regime committed unforgivable crimes in impunity? Munaf was the regime until yesterday. You never did in the past? I was hoping you’d be consistent . I am stopping short from questioning the integrity of such an approach.

July 6th, 2012, 12:49 pm

 

bronco said:

#11 Tara

I have no opinion on that, but that’s what many Syrians who hate the regime kept repeating while accusing the Alawites and not the Sunnis who are integral part of the regime of these ‘crimes’. Now the truth is coming out from their own mouth. It must be bitter…

Ask them about their inconsistency, not mine.

July 6th, 2012, 12:55 pm

 
 

Tara said:

Bronco

I am not aware of any pro revolution activist on SC or at large who defends the corrupt Sunnis that support the regime. I have always read the general sentiment that they are as culprit as Assad himself…

Deep down in the heart of your heart, I just know that you believe the regime is criminal. Deny it all you want….

July 6th, 2012, 1:11 pm

 

Antoine said:

I am asking this question to anyone who knows the answer :

Are Syrians in Jordan considered to be culturally closer to so-called “East Banker Jordanians” or the Palestinian refugees ?

July 6th, 2012, 1:24 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

[End of Landis analysis]
__________________________________________________________________

LOL. I been getting calls all day now from SNP members asking if they should sell everything and pack their bags. At least you made us laugh and cheered up today. But I referred them all to to this sober reality:

July 6th, 2012, 1:29 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

I did not joined the armed forces to see this army harm its own people,
________________________________________________________________

Liar. He did not join nor served in the regular Syrian army. He joined and served the Republican Guards units, it’s mission is solely protecting the Baathist dictatorship, not protecting Syria, nor liberating the Golan. Deceiving con-man. Did he know about the Republican units carrying out the Hama massacres 30,000 dead, while his daddy sipping whisky at local officer club.

July 6th, 2012, 1:38 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

Assad should quit while he is less behind.

Btw if there was an election tomorrow between Assad and Tlass who’d win?

July 6th, 2012, 1:56 pm

 

irritated said:

#19 Uzair8

His sister Nahed Ojjeh, the most powerful Syrian woman.. in Paris.

July 6th, 2012, 2:04 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

UAE checks for Syrian funds after economic sanctions: paper
Fri Jul 6, 2012

(Reuters) – The United Arab Emirates’ central bank has asked lenders and financial institutions in the Gulf Arab state to start an investigation into any funds or investments by top Syrian officials, a local newspaper reported on Friday.

[…]

The central bank gave financial organizations and banks three days to submit details of any assets or transactions made by 139 Syrian officials including Assad, his wife Asma and other family members, the daily said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/06/us-syria-crisis-uae-sanctions-idUSBRE8650G120120706

July 6th, 2012, 2:06 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

I hope Iranians get their news from various sources because to my knowledge Press Tv hasn’t mentioned the Tlass defection as of yet.

July 6th, 2012, 2:12 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

20. Irritated

More powerful than Anisa Makhlouf?

July 6th, 2012, 2:14 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

It is not my job to personally edit your posts, check the rules of the site specifically regarding hateful and racist language.

SC Moderator

Syriacomment Moderator:

This is the third time this comment was deleted overnight from previous post. Are you or Landis deleting it? Was it deleted without your knowledge, or were you told by someone to delete it? If you or Landis did it, what is there that so objectionable. You stated to me in email, that you will not delete comments, so if there is any material that you need out, I wll be happy to remove it, could you please strike it through or state that part removed by moderator.
_________________________________________________________________

July 6th, 2012, 2:30 pm

 

JMUMU said:

This could very wll be wishful thinking but, If Tlass is well respected amongst the opposition and given his intimate links with Bashar, I hope that Tlass is able to be a leader of reconciliation. I hope that he will work with the russians in giving them a good alternative to assad without all the sectarian violence. I’m hoping

July 6th, 2012, 2:31 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

Wasn’t gonna post again today but I can’t help it, if it means undermining the regime.

Just as Assad announces to his followers they are in a ‘real war’, his right-hand man deserts….

😆 😆 😆 😆

July 6th, 2012, 2:37 pm

 

majedkhaldoun said:

This is practically all about Tlass defection,Tlass family has been close friends to the Assad family, it is enough reason to hate them just like Khaddam, but it sure nice to see the Mnhebbak burning with anger,suffering painfully, yelling talking nonsense,choking,good to see their blood sugar jump up, and their adrenalin so high.Irritated more than irritated.
This is fun time

July 6th, 2012, 2:43 pm

 

Syrian Nationalist Party said:

Just as Assad announces to his followers they are in a ‘real war’, his right-hand man deserts….
_________________________________________________________________

Like his father, he was just a moll on Assad right buttox. Gave him title to show Syrian Sunni’s that they are included in the regime. This fictitious GENERAL title who supposedly commanded major regime security unit, could not issue an order to move a single soldier one step. Like his father, he was overpaid PROP, that regime was so desperate for some Sunni’s to front, they let him run a gambit of corruption rackets. Him and a dozen Sunni’s from the provincial lower class families.

July 6th, 2012, 2:53 pm

 

hamoudeh said:

When the regime say it will not change anything on the ground i believe him.
An illiterate alawi soldier from an unknown village in the mountain has more power than this “general”, BUT this is very good for all low/middle officer there are some who were convinced that the regime is not sectarian with personnality like him, so its good news, it will totally naked the ugly sectarian regime as what he really is.

July 6th, 2012, 3:27 pm

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Nikolaos van Dam in Global Perspectives: “I have, from the beginning, been opposed to the phrase “Arab Spring””.

I still call it the Arab Spring. And I still admire the Arab Spring.
Yes, it is sometimes (not all of the time) bloody, brutal and ugly. But it is definitely more full of hope than the Arab long winter that engulfed the Arab world for long tens of years.

Many are fearful that the Islamists are hijacking this Arab uprising. It doesn’t really matter. What do matters is that the Arab people, finally, feel that they can change things, that they DO and DID change things, that in the future, they will be as able to bring change, as they already did. If the Islamists gain power (I’m doubtful), they will always know that the same people who brought down the juntas and the tyrants, is now capable of bringing them (the Islamists) down, in much less effort.

The Arabs begin to feel that they have the power to change. Spring is a winter changing into a summer. This is the Arab spring in my eyes.
.

July 6th, 2012, 3:39 pm

 

zoo said:

The opposition dilemma about Tllass: “hand him an ICC indictment or a cigar”.. (or both).

The bloodshed continues as Syria awaits ‘implementation’ of an impossible peace plan
By Michael Weiss World Last updated: July 6th, 2012

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/michaelweiss/100169439/the-bloodshed-continues-as-syria-awaits-implementation-of-an-impossible-peace-plan/


Be under no illusions as to who Manaf is or what his motives for abandoning the regime must have been. His father was a notorious defence minister and blogger Brown Moses has demonstrated Manaf’s chumminess with every manner of French conspiracy theorist or fascist. The Syrian opposition must now wonder as to whether or not they should hand him an ICC indictment or a cigar. Though they recognise that his about-face is deeply embarrassing for the regime, as is the fact that he is apparently en route to Paris where he may actually enliven the stately banality of the Friends of Syria conference by saying something useful or original.
….

July 6th, 2012, 4:22 pm

 

zoo said:

“The Assad regime itself, however, may not belong on the list of those that should be particularly worried by this release.”
Syria Wikileaks a disappointment for the Bashar bashers?

Who should worry about SyriaLeaks?
Posted By David Kenner Thursday, July 5, 2012 – 11:58 AM Share
http://blog.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/07/05/who_should_worry_about_syrialeaks

Syrians on the fence: This is the most important category. Syria, by President Bashar al-Assad’s own admission, is in a “state of war” — and any instances of Syrian officials opening channels with rebels, or vice versa, could get someone killed.

Engagement-happy Western officials
Kerry, in particular, took the lead in the attempt at diplomatic engagement — famously having a cozy dinner with Assad at the Old Damascus restaurant Naranj.
Western companies looking to make a buck:
…..
The Assad regime itself, however, may not belong on the list of those that should be particularly worried by this release. Sure, there could be the odd email that paints Syrian officials as out of touch or deepens existing fault lines within the elite. But generally speaking, the Syrian government is an open book: Its leaders believe they are in the midst of an existential battle, and will use whatever means necessary to perpetuate their hold on power. You don’t need millions of leaked emails to tell you that — you just need to read the news.

July 6th, 2012, 4:29 pm

 

SYR.EXPAT said:

It’s been quite some time since I last posted on SC. Glad to see Joshua posting again. After close to a year and half, the supporters of this murderous regime are starting to lose it, especially with Munaf’s defection. Munaf is the son of war criminal Mustafa Tlass who was one of the pillars of the criminal Assad regime. Munaf was as close as anyone can be to Bashar, the head of the Assad Mafia, and yet the thugs running this mafia managed to alienate him. How stupid and dumb they have become.

One of the gems from Muaf’s short statement is his admission “because I was in complete opposition with the unjustified violence and crimes committed by Assad’s regime in the past months.” Let’s see how the minhebakites will spin this. We’re also going to be treated to a healthy dose of Syrian Leaks. Let’s see what will be uncovered in the coming days and how the Bashar thugs, if the leaks prove damaging, will dismiss the leaky revelations as part of the inter-galactic conspiracy against the Charlatan-In-Chief.

The ship is now listing badly and it’s a matter of time. How long, I can’t tell, but any smart individual will quickly jump ship rather than sink with the criminal Assad enterprise to the lowest depths of history ‘s trash bin.

History will be very unkind to the Assad clan and all its supporters.

July 6th, 2012, 4:52 pm

 

omen said:

Manaf Tlas: Syrian regime ‘taking country to Hell’

Gen Tlas had been under partial house arrest since May 2011 because he opposed the regime’s response to the uprising.

He was also involved in reconciliation efforts in rural Damascus – mainly in Douma and Daraya and Tal – as well as in Homs and his home town Rastan.

Brig Gen Tlas met residents of several towns and helped obtain the release of many of their prisoners, even taking families from Douma to meet President Assad, who promised them a peaceful solution.

But Rastan was the turning-point for Manaf Tlas.

[…]

His brother Firas Tlas, a businessman, has been accused of corruption and of benefiting from the regime.

But many activists say he has been largely involved in the uprising, providing humanitarian aid to the affected families.

Firas Tlas had strong links to the opposition and left the country a few months ago, pledging his support for the rebellion. He is now living in Paris.

July 6th, 2012, 4:52 pm

 
 

Juergen said:

In the lebanese cafe i go sometimes the old men were united in their view that Manaf is now Bashars men in the west, they think he got out with the help of the muhabarat and eventually will infiltrate the opposition(like that is not yet done). I wonder if years of sahloul tabacco smoke and al manar tv cause serious health problems…

July 6th, 2012, 5:14 pm

 

Halabi said:

So much anger from the delusional about Tlass. It’s amazing how sudden the shift is from love to hate. Last week the Tlass family was considered part of the evidence that the Assad regime and military aren’t sectarian, now the Tlass family, from Mustapha to his daughters-in-law, are painted as corrupt traitors, criminal Sunnis who have overseen the murder of tens of thousands of other Sunnis over four decades just so they could pin in it on Bashar Al Assad and his family’s sect.

I would love to hear more about who Manaf’s sister slept with. If there is any gossip about Bushra Al Assad that would be helpful too. What about the shrine that Hafez built for his mommy Na3seh, may she rot in hell. Delving into that Oedipus complex will definitely sell some books.

All schadenfreude aside, the Tlasses should watch their backs wherever they go. They have been part of a machine that destroyed tens of thousands of lives and could very well be targeted by the victims. And judging by the level of venom coming from the pro-Assad zombies, I’m sure there are some shabiha out there who want to please their lord.

July 6th, 2012, 5:16 pm

 

omen said:

8. BRONCO said: Now that Tlass ‘defected’ he is forgiven for all his crimes and
the SNC will cooperate with him.

That sounds more like a cheap trick from the opposition to encourage more defections.

What guarantees Tlass has that once he ‘helps’ the opposition in their ‘revolution’ he will not be indicted and executed, or simply murdered?

it’s staying with the regime that’s more lethal.

via haaretz:


“Most of
the units loyal to Assad are dominated by Alawite officers,” says the opposition leader, “but there are also Sunni officers and even generals. They have to work twice as hard at proving their fanatical loyalty. For example, the battalion commander who led the terrible attack on Baba Amr in Homs was a Sunni colonel. Assad has authorized even the most junior officer to shoot and kill senior officers on the slightest suspicion that they may be about to defect.”

“Out of about 6,000 soldiers and officers who have been reported killed since the uprising began, at least half were shot by the regime loyalists. Afterwards, their deaths were blamed on ‘armed gangs’ and they were given full military funerals.”

July 6th, 2012, 5:19 pm

 

Juergen said:

Halabi

we should make a list of top Assad supporters, will be interessting to see how much longer the list and the rage against the former “elite” will go.
I heard they raided Manafs house, Damascus will see many empty villas soon.

Stick to the truth

I would call it an oriental view on things. As a passionate argileh smoker I heard the egyptians say, it was the turkish who brought it to us, the Iranians would blame the arabs for bring it to them, and the turks said the iranians were the first. Now you claim the turks brought the wastabakshishbusiness to you. First of all there is no ethnical excuse good enough to be true, but sorry what did the bible say about the Phoenicians ?

July 6th, 2012, 5:23 pm

 

majedkhaldoun said:

Welcom back Syr.expat

Assad is going into slipery road, more and more defections will increase.
Druze are joining the revolution,Huge demonstrations in Sweida.

FOS meeting proves that the one who said the west will backtrack soon,proves he knows nothing.another of his ever wrong predictions.

July 6th, 2012, 5:23 pm

 

Bruno said:

Truth hurts doesn’t it eh? maybe you Rebel supporters could tell me Why there are two undemocratic countries of Saudi Arabia and Qatar funding the rebels? or the fact Muslim Brotherhood would win in the elections? as it happened in Egypt and will happen in Libya as reported by the media?

July 6th, 2012, 5:30 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

41. Juergen said:

Halabi

we should make a list of top Assad supporters, will be interessting to see how much longer the list and the rage against the former “elite” will go.
I heard they raided Manafs house, Damascus will see many empty villas soon.

The neutral and objective western medias shall perhaps visit deserted Manafs and Tlass`s villas as they did with the Gaddafis villas,
I bet the Syrian villas are more luxury and elegant.
Syrians have finer taste.

July 6th, 2012, 5:33 pm

 

Juergen said:

moving documentary about the children of Homs

How will this generation forget what they have seen and went through?

Stick to the truth

Yes you are right, the taste is better, but i have to admit those who are the nouveau riche look the same in all places. But I would not mind help opening the Imelda sorry Asmaa memorial shoe museum

July 6th, 2012, 5:33 pm

 

zoo said:

“There is no political solution for Syria”
Syria’s divided opposition: A convenient truth?
Alex Rowell, July 6, 2012
….
For Michael Weiss, “If the West is serious and sincere when it says the opposition must unite and negotiate a political solution, we should all commit suicide, because we’re being governed by lunatics. There is no political solution for Syria, and [US President] Barack Obama knows it. They’re just kicking the can down the street until after the November election. The only political solution they care about is the one in Washington.”

To read more: http://www.nowlebanon.com/NewsArticleDetails.aspx?ID=416631&MID=0&PID=0#ixzz1zsekal9M

July 6th, 2012, 5:34 pm

 

Bruno said:

check the rules of the site, personalizing posts such as the one below go against the rules.

SC Moderator

@majedkhaldoun
Are you an Syrian or [Edited by Moderator]?

(Assad is going into slipery road, more and more defections will increase.
Druze are joining the revolution,Huge demonstrations in Sweida.)

Huge demonstrations in Sweida? really? it just 500 protested and also looked staged by the rebels, there have been experts that have stated, the tactics that the rebels on YouTube cited as Brilliant.

July 6th, 2012, 5:35 pm

 

omen said:

via 9. zoo:

Tlass was headed to Paris to join his wife and sister, Nahed Ojjeh, widow of Saudi millionaire arms dealer Akram Ojjeh, a source close to the regime told AFP.

do you think the sister can help? i mean of all things to happen to have ties to this industry.

July 6th, 2012, 5:36 pm

 

Bruno said:

Sadly @zoo your article is quiet right on that one.

July 6th, 2012, 5:38 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

41. Juergen said:

tick to the truth

I would call it an oriental view on things. As a passionate argileh smoker I heard the egyptians say, it was the turkish who brought it to us, the Iranians would blame the arabs for bring it to them, and the turks said the iranians were the first. Now you claim the turks brought the wastabakshishbusiness to you. First of all there is no ethnical excuse good enough to be true, but sorry what did the bible say about the Phoenicians ?

I would not say its today a pure oriental mentality. It has also gradually infested other brains. Remember the affair of the German Ex-President Wulf who just wanted to build a small villa for him and his wife.

She should not have visited Qatar.
I guess he was very much impressed.

July 6th, 2012, 5:43 pm

 

omen said:

channel4 reporter: Manaf predicting many army defections.

July 6th, 2012, 5:52 pm

 

Juergen said:

Of course not. But there is no such thing as a free lunch they say in the US. But to blame the ottomans for everything which is not shiny in the arab world is such a lame excuse, likewise blaming the Israelis for all the odds in arab countries.

July 6th, 2012, 5:53 pm

 

bronco said:

The Furious Friends of Syria meeting ended with a totally unexpected result:

The ‘Friends’ want the 6 point Annan peace plan (that does not call for Bashar Al Assad to resign) to become a UNSC resolution. The same plan that was rejected by the opposition and its allies because it did not include Bashar’s resignation.
Yes, that’s what they want and want it under Chapter 7.

Curiously this is the same resolution Russia proposed a few month ago at the UNSC and that was rejected in favor of the French-Qatar resolution (calling for Bashar Al Assad to resign) that ended up by being vetoed.

It took thousands of dead to come back to the original Russian draft resolution, conveniently renamed ‘The Annan six point peace plan’

If it is not modified to include an ambiguous ‘7th’ point calling for Bashar to resign, it sure Russia and China will not veto it. Why would they? That’s the resolution they’ve been wanting from the beginning that will bind both sides to stop violence and engage in a dialog with no preconditions.

Annan must be delighted, it’s going as he planned: his plan will become a binding UNSC resolution.
Was Hillary angrily scolding the Russians a face saving act to hide that they won?

July 6th, 2012, 6:05 pm

 

Stick to the True said:

Juergen said:

moving documentary about the children of Homs

How will this generation forget what they have seen and went through?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OXuzJgAi4EY&feature=player_embedded#at=84

Stick to the truth

Yes you are right, the taste is better, but i have to admit those who are the nouveau riche look the same in all places. But I would not mind help opening the Imelda sorry Asmaa memorial shoe museum

Well, you shall know better. How did Polish, Russian, Ukrainian and specially Jews forgot the horrifying experience of the IIWW?

And how will the Iraqis children forget what they have seen and went through?
And how will the Vietnamis children forget what they have seen and went through?
Te list is almost endless

So please let us not compare the war against Terror in Syria with a.m. crimeS.

“sorry Asmaa memorial shoe museum”: I love the Spiegel and Bild, they are very amusing.

The video reminds me with the Video of Huberta von Voss-Wittig. This was a total failure, in fat a jocke. I guess she regret it meanwhile.
Question: Who is the UN-Ambasdor of Germany Mr. Voss Wittig or his wife?

July 6th, 2012, 6:10 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

What question(s) would you ask Manaf Tlass?

Here’s mine:

1. What is the level of involvement of Iran and Hezbollah in this crisis?

2. Who was behind the Houla massacre?

3. Can you shed light on what happened to Adnan Bakkour?

Also I’m sure the Hariri investigators would love to talk to Mr Tlass.

July 6th, 2012, 6:15 pm

 

Michal said:

There are many opinions if Tlas’s defection is important or not. Mr Landis thinks it is important. I am happy about that, because i hope that Assad, the biggest terrorist in Syria, will fall.
However I am not sure if this analysis is based on serious reasoning or is it just a wishful thinking?

July 6th, 2012, 6:23 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

50. bronco said:
“Was Hillary angrily scolding the Russians a face saving act to hide that they won?”

Either she is useless OR she is playing two rolles and shifting the “Opposition”
If not, I guess she will be the first person Obama will get rid off provided he becomes again president. Obama, CHANGE!!!

July 6th, 2012, 6:27 pm

 

Juergen said:

Stick to the Truth

You have a problem that a women has a live of their own? When do UN ambassadors are known for producing videos?

I would agree less “pathos” is what would suit more, but hey without anger and feelings in general we would have a hundred or more Assads to rule.

Norman

Was there ever a real trust for sunni elites in the Assad regime besides for Khaddam and Tlass? As I heard it, the big old boss was paranoid about sunnis take over his chair.

July 6th, 2012, 6:37 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

Any comment deemed provocative and/or prejudice gets trashed. Over the top generalizations over different ethnic or religious backgrounds are placed where they belong. I strongly urge you to have a look over the rules of the site.

SC Moderator

Dear Mr. Landis or whoever moderate the comments,

It not comprehensive for me that my answers to a comments which are addressed to me are moderated and/or deleted.

I would like to know how many Pro-Opposition comments are moderated/deleted and how many neutral and objective comments are are moderated/deleted.

Tis would be very interesting to understand the position of SC

July 6th, 2012, 6:53 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

#53NORMAN
I still think that Syria will be divided, no trust is left, nobody can sleep with another from different religion as his neighbour.

I wish that the various communities will come to conclusion that only a united syria is a strong Syria and that they can/will forget what happend and mange to continue to live and work together.
And I hope what is happening today would be a lesson to everyone that secterian thinking and forgein interference is never good for Syria.

But if it has to happen, then I would prefere that the real friends od Syria take the coastal area, Damascus, Aleppo and leave the Syrian desert to the opposition, so that they can join their friends in Saudi Arabia.
Of course they can stil come to us and spend their summer holiday in our beautiful Syria.

July 6th, 2012, 7:14 pm

 

jna said:

42. Juergensaid:moving documentary about the children of Homs…


I winced at seeing these children getting into the car of a stranger. What would you think if children were used this way in Germany?

July 6th, 2012, 7:20 pm

 

Juergen said:

JNA

I wish children were not subject to child labor in Syria. The elites of Syria never really cared too much about that dont you think?

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=470988532930943&set=a.286970317999433.84173.206668246029641&type=1&theater

July 6th, 2012, 7:34 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

Oh JNA this so touching, it really strokes, specially the perfectly metered stage/studio lightings and clean cut faces (subtitles are hellarious). Dude, Khaddam and Tlass were responsible for making 15 million Syrian refugees, slaves for the bedouins, another 10 millions lived in abject poverty, scrapes food from the fields, all that while they ammassed hundreds of millions, stolen by corruption. Using a Mafia rule to cartel every living opportunity possible.

July 6th, 2012, 7:34 pm

 

Norman said:

STTT,

To much blood is spelled to forget and we are not known to forgive, when you are afraid for your life you don’t care how big your house is as long as it has strong walls and doors and you are armed to protect it. Sorry to say that but Syria will never be the same.

July 6th, 2012, 7:36 pm

 

Tara said:

This I believe is an ominous step.  Ban has probably given up on the elements of the 6 points plan and wants the UN to mediate dialogue.  What dialogue is he talking about?  The regime dialoguing with itself?  The wolf dialoguing with the sheep?  How on earth would he expect that dialogue is possible without cessation of violence, release of prisoners, etc.. Any one who dialogues before these condition are met is traitor.   

UN Syria mission should be reduced, Ban Ki-moon says

The head of the UN, Ban Ki-moon, has recommended that its mission in Syria should be scaled back and refocused on political mediation, after a UN-backed truce failed to take hold.

In a report to the Security Council, Mr Ban said the mission should concentrate on fostering dialogue instead of monitoring the truce.

….
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-18749774

July 6th, 2012, 7:40 pm

 

STICK TO THE TRUTH said:

59. Juergen said:

JNA

I wish children were not subject to child labor in Syria. The elites of Syria never really cared too much about that dont you think?

The German minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, broke the law by smuggling a carpet from Afghanistan, although he knew that children are used to produce these carpets.

July 6th, 2012, 7:43 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

61. Norman said:

STTT,

To much blood is spelled to forget and we are not known to forgive

We have to learn it, but we can learn only if we are prepared to put our ethnical and religiöse differences aside.

The people of North Irland never thought they will mange to leave together again.

Legal Justice for what happend can help. Its a must.

July 6th, 2012, 7:54 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

“…Any one who dialogues before these condition are met is traitor. ..”
___________________________________________________________________

Anyone who dialogues with Baathist escapees, who served the regime is traitor. SNP is prepared to dialogues with Assad unconditionally, if he is willing to make recommended changes and meet SNP demands.

July 6th, 2012, 7:57 pm

 

Norman said:

STTT,
I admire your optimism, but i lived enough to see that Syria, the way it was will never be back. Sorry, but i don’t see it , i would love to,

July 6th, 2012, 8:05 pm

 

STICK TO THE TRUTH said:

52. Uzair8 said:

What question(s) would you ask Manaf Tlass?

Here’s mine:

1. What is the level of involvement of Iran and Hezbollah in this crisis?

2. Who was behind the Houla massacre?

3. Can you shed light on what happened to Adnan Bakkour?

Also I’m sure the Hariri investigators would love to talk to Mr Tlass.

I guess his answer will be: I will not talk without my lawyer 🙂

July 6th, 2012, 8:22 pm

 

bronco said:

Norman

Lebanese lived through that and manage to overcome it and live happily together (somehow).
Arabs have very short memories, thank God.

July 6th, 2012, 8:36 pm

 

Tara said:

FSA lying dormant in Aleppo, preparing and waiting for the right moment to attack.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/middleeast/syria/9382582/Syria-United-rebels-gain-ground-as-slow-war-comes-to-Aleppo.html

Aleppo is an economic powerhouse. Many of its population are wealthy Sunni businessmen who benefited from the president’s economic liberalisation policies and remain loyal to the regime.
But slowly the opposition is encroaching. Their most forward position of Hraytan lies only three miles from the city’s fringes and the effects are being felt.
“We can get inside Aleppo now, and we are supplying guns to FSA units in the city centre. They are lying dormant; hiding, preparing and waiting for the right moment to strike,” said Wassim, 23, a fighter in Anadan.

….
Free Syrian Army units, which until recently had largely been made up of disparate militias protecting their own territories, are joining forces to form a common front.
Sheikh Tawfiq explains how the new alliances are working and how they hope to expand into the city. “I am one of nine members of the military council of Aleppo military province,” he said. “We have left some seats free for Aleppo city.”
The council meets in towns across the province to discuss military strategies. Increasingly, rebel units are moving across the countryside to support fighters in different areas.
“I have fought in 10 towns across Aleppo,” said Sinan, 35, an FSA fighter based in Anadan. Counting on their fingers, he and his comrades listed the names of towns for which they had fought.
….

“Almost every attack we make, we already know that many soldiers in the target will defect,” said the commander of Der Tezzah.
In the string of villages visited by The Daily Telegraph in northern Aleppo province, defectors held the key to military success.
The rebels are even finding improbable allies with ethnic Kurdish fighters who had previously been sheltered by the regime.
Sitting in the old police station in the village of Qaptan, 14 miles from Aleppo, Sheikh Tawfiq spoke animatedly with representatives of the PKK, the Kurdish separationist movement, present in the area.
Over sweet tea and Turkish coffee, the men discussed the future strategy for Aleppo province. “The PKK has decided to form a union with the FSA,” said Sheikh Tawfiq. “They will not help us fight Assad, but there is a cold peace.”

July 6th, 2012, 8:39 pm

 

habib said:

29. Amir in Tel Aviv

And finally Egyptians can openly state how much they hate Israel. That’s the best thing that happened in this “spring”. But you won’t see any Zionists hailing this fact, they’re too busy crying crocodile tears over dead Islamists (as long as they’re killed by Israel’s enemies, of course).

July 6th, 2012, 9:00 pm

 

Tara said:

Pro regime propaganda turns to be western-made.  From Bashar wanting reform but can’t be rushed into it, to that he will do it in his own pace, that he is a reformist in his heart but hampered by the relentless foreign imposed sanctions, Iraqi refugees,  Harriri investigation, etc, all these claims were produced by a hired British PR firm Brown Lloyd James.  Haven’t I heard all this from our staunchest anti-colonialism supporter?  It is almost laughable…  

Posted at 05:46 PM ET, 07/06/2012
Washington’s Syria lobbyists: ‘Hard power necessary to quell rebellion’
By Michael Moynihan

The first release contains communications between the Syrian government and its American-British PR firm Brown Lloyd James (BLJ). The firm, founded by former Beatles manager Peter Brown, has represented a number of undemocratic regimes in the past, included Gabon, China, and Moammar Gaddafi’s Libya, plus it has worked on behalf of supporters of the Mujaheddin-e-Khalq (MEK), an Iranian opposition group designated a terrorist organization by the State Department. (Full disclosure: I went on a Brown Lloyd James arranged trip to Libya in 2010 and wrote the following skeptical dispatch upon returning.)

In a document contained in the WikiLeaks releases, Brown Lloyd James advises the Syrian regime on how to spin its war against anti-Assad dissidents: “If hard power is necessary to quell rebellion, soft power is needed to reassure the Syrian people and outside audiences that reform is proceeding apace, legitimate grievances are being addressed and taken seriously, and that Syria’s actions are ultimately aimed at creating an environment in which change and progress can take place.” The document also advises the creation of a media campaign that would “create a reform ‘echo-chamber’ by developing media coverage outside of Syria that points to the President’s difficult task of wanting reform, but conducted in an non-chaotic, rational way.”

 The WikiLeaks document appears to blow a rather large hole in Brown Lloyd James’s previous claim, made to the Hill last August, that “its work for the Syrian government ended in December 2010.” The Syrian e-mail released by WikiLeaks, which contained the BLJ plan as an attachment, is dated May 19, 2011…

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/post/washingtons-syria-lobbyists-hard-power-necessary-to-quell-rebellion/2012/07/06/gJQA0jBWSW_blog.html

July 6th, 2012, 9:25 pm

 

Observer said:

So here are my questions about this defection
1. We know that the regime is made up of hard core inner circle group with a majority Alawi cadre
2. We know that Sunni prop ups were used to give the impression of inclusiveness and spread the pain and the gain, pain of being blamed for every ill and gain in the huge graft that the elite is doing to the country.
3. Tlass claims that he was slowly marginalized and Landis on NPR says that the regime in effect burned him when they attacked Douma after putting him for negotiations with the rebels only to use that as a ruse to attack the city.
4. If he was being marginalized does that mean
a) the regime is no longer trusting anyone but the inner circle/
b) the regime knew about his divided loyalties and decided to bypass him?
5. How did he defect if he was being watched?
a) was it because he bribed his way out?
b) was it because all of his fortune was given up?
c) was it because of laxity on the part of the regime?
d) was it because the regime is overwhelmed to pay attention to every person?
6. Knowing that his family was already out, how come the regime did not put him under house arrest?
I agree with Tara that we should not talk about revenge for these people lest more are afraid of defecting.
Now this new guy Stick keeps telling us about how German ministers are behaving badly, at least the press is free and has exposed them and then an independent justice system has prosecuted them.

Stick Fredo Corleone’s Mafia state is a failed state and no matter how sophisticated he and his entire clan and circle try to appear and would like to project they are all still barbarians that have just started to walk on two legs a few years ago only. The inferiority complex this Mafia community has is stifling and nauseating to watch.

July 6th, 2012, 9:39 pm

 

Norman said:

Bronco,

Lebanon had caring Syria to put it back together, there is nobody to do what Syria did in Lebanon for Syria.

July 6th, 2012, 9:40 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Why does the revolution deserve to succeed? Not only deserve to, but WILL succeed.

Look at “The Little Syrian Town That Could” linked in Joshua’s roundup.

What terrific human spirit! What inspiration! I am laughing at Assad with these heroes.

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/05/the_little_syrian_town_that_could?page=full

July 6th, 2012, 10:27 pm

 

Syrialover said:

# 72. Observer

The item I linked above shows the mind-blowing contrast between the substandard primitive Assad animals and the wonderful, resourceful, strong, determined people they are daring to attack.

July 6th, 2012, 10:35 pm

 
 

Syrialover said:

#36 Halabi said:

“All schadenfreude aside, the Tlasses should watch their backs wherever they go. They have been part of a machine that destroyed tens of thousands of lives and could very well be targeted by the victims”

Any justice plotters should first please focus on Rifaat Assad!

How the HELL has he been getting away with it and allowed to thrive?

He cannot be separated out from what is happening in Syria now.

July 6th, 2012, 10:54 pm

 

zoo said:

Sarkozy defecting too ?

Sarko and Carla ‘fled to Canada hours before raid on Paris home and knew police would come for them’

* Sarkozy and wife Carla Bruni-Sarkozy travelled to Canada seeking refuge with a Canadian billionaire Paul Desmarais
* Sarkozy allegedly accepted bribes from L’Oreal heiress Liliane Bettencourt
* Police swept his Paris mansion and office on Tuesday

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2168702/Nicolas-Sarkozy-Carla-Bruni-fled-hours-raid-Paris-home.html#ixzz1zu1cXpBw

July 6th, 2012, 11:11 pm

 

omen said:

why is Adnan Bakkour being mentioned? has he gone missing after defecting?

.

going back to an earlier article that came out on june 22th:

Assad’s government has so far prevented the wave of diplomatic defections that heralded the fall of the Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi. However, a senior U.S. official in Washing-ton said some of those closest to the Syrian leader were now pre-paring to flee. “We are seeing members of Bashar [Assad]’s inner circle make plans to leave,” the official said.

This has even included moving large sums of money off-shore into Lebanese and Chinese banks and making contact with opposition elements and Western governments.

Syrian opposition groups con-firmed that they were actively courting American help to encourage more defections.

“I know for sure there are some high-ranking officers who are waiting for the right chance to defect,” said a senior opposition source.”We have names of people in the presidential pal-ace. There are rumours that there is one who is really close to the president and we are expecting to see him out of the country soon.”

how many loyalists scoffed at this report at the time as baseless and as cheap “psyops”?

July 6th, 2012, 11:21 pm

 

S.A. said:

To Joshua,

With reference to your previous article about Fouad Ajami: Fouad Ajami is one of the most biased persons I have ever heard based on his interviews. He is the favorite of CNN and Fox News which says alot. He says readily just what they want him to say and what fits perfectly well with their warped propaganda. Whether he has a Ph.D from Johns Hopkins or not, he certainly is not a reliable source of information about Syria. I found it amazing to read on your blog that you have such admiration for a person like that or that your idea about “Arab rulers” – as simplistic of a generalization that is – was formed by the books that you read that were written by Ajami. Based on his interviews, I think that his simplistic and cheap generalizations perfectly fit the intellect of the average uneducated and uninterested in the rest of the world average American person. I am deeply disappointed to read your opinion on the likes of Fouad Ajami.

I would also like to point out that your opinion seems to have become extremely biased. The ruling elite in Syria are not and have never been only Alawites. You are actually writing about the crisis in a very sectarian way. Maybe the conflict has taken a sectarian twist right recently, but Syria has always been ruled by both Alawites and Sunnis. Tlass and Khaddam were a major backbone of the government of Hafez Assad. There are many other Sunnis in the government and the Mukhabarat who are leaders in the government.

As for Tlass and Khaddam, both have benefited and survived from the corruption and the privileged lives they were able to lead because of Hafez Al-Assad. Khaddam was even given a Saudi passport for being the puppet of the Saudi government even as far back as the eighties. Not only that, but he also was paid huge sums of money for helping dump nuclear waste in the ports of Syria. This is how much these two individuals cared about their Syrian Sunni and Alawite brothers.

Finally, even if the present government has made mistakes, you cannot simplistically just put the blame on Bashar Al-Assad. He is not alone in the government. We might say that maybe there was mismanagement but it does not make the individual a criminal and especially when the atrocities are committed from both sides. Saving Syrian lives is definitely not the main interest of Clinton, the U.S. government, the British or Mr. Fouad Ajami. Those who have gone along and applauded the Iraq war definitely have no interest in preserving human life. They are mainly interested in political agendas, or maybe a good paycheck for Mr. Ajami.

I hope that you will try to be fairer in your opinions on this blog, it risks becoming another Fox news or CNN that we have already cancelled from our daily news reading.

July 6th, 2012, 11:50 pm

 

abbas said:

looks like Dr Landis got his answer on who is going to be Syria next president: Manaf
Come to think of it he is perfect, half Sunni half Alawi, with the regime but not really involved in the regime, rich brother able to bring money back to rebuild and married to a rich and well known Aleppo family that can hand him Aleppo, from Homs and Rastan so that’s a plus, loves France and spend his vacations there but with a conning dad that will sell his qualifications to Russia, in fact I will not be surprised if it was discovered that the Russians helped him out of Syria, Bashar friend so we know he will not prosecute him or worse hang him, sounds like the best think we have for a solution to this bad situation we have now, not the best option but not a bad one either, better than spilling another drop of a child’s blood
we need someone that is already rich so maybe he will steel less from the downtrodden Syrians

July 7th, 2012, 12:15 am

 

omen said:

for basharists, houla = “mismanagement.”

.

abbas,
i’m not endorsing him, but speaking of rebuilding, turns out tlass is a trained architect.

July 7th, 2012, 12:23 am

 

abbas said:

Omen
The more I think of it I like the idea more and more, I just want to go to Damascus soon without being kidnapped on the way from the airport to downtown.
Plus west will be happy with him since he is not Islamist, the only drawback is that Aldandashe hates his family
Tara: could you ask you aunt about Manaf mom, we know a lot about his dad and the fabulous cook book he wrote, but nothing about the mom

July 7th, 2012, 12:28 am

 

Osama said:

Dear oppositionists,

Gloat and obsess on this minor event in the history of Syria. Manaf Tlass is nobody, his last name is the only thing that makes this event newsworthy. I personally believe that Manaf only got as far as he did because of his father, but that all went wrong in the early 2000’s when Mustafa started going senile and was gorced to retire. So in many ways, he is expressing his resentment, much like the Kamal brothers did to Saddam.

The Kamal brothers could not have been higher, they were Saddams sons-in-law and his right hand men. They defected, they had similar words to say about the regime, and after their intelligence and propaganda value was consumed, they were left to rot.

They never ever threatened to cause the regime to collapse, and neither will Manaf…

So enjoy the MSM Tlass festival, which will take your minds off the reality of 2 failed conferences,

Doesn’t it bother anyone in the opposition that Mr. Tlass was given visa to France? While Other defecting officers are sent to a smelly Turkish camp to be debriefed, but Manaf getswhisked off to Paris to give a worthless statement?

July 7th, 2012, 12:31 am

 

Shami said:

The only opportunistic hypocrite that I hope will not defect till the end of assad adventure is Hassoun,the aleppines have something big to settle with him .

July 7th, 2012, 12:31 am

 

Shami said:

Norman ,was not your father a hamwi through adoption by the Muslim hamwis within which he learnt Quran ? So why did you come to hate the hamwis ? And for the sake of which narrative ? And did you verified if this narrative is real ,is that narrative product of a fearful mini sectarian mindset or based on real facts ?
And those which whom your father the son of mardinli refugies learned Quran in Hama ,were they terrorists ,evil,corrupt,hypocrites,mukhabaratis,spies can they be compared to Assad ,makhklouf ,shaleesh and their opportunistic hypocrit but necessary cover That as you discovered lately despise them inwardly ?

July 7th, 2012, 1:09 am

 

Shami said:

ALdandeshe arent you beduins who were given a nobility title by the ottomans ? how to explain your violent anti-beduin racism inculcated to you by a peasant whose name was Antun Saadeh ?
Ya3ni may I ask you , do you love yourself ? or is it a identity complex ?

July 7th, 2012, 1:40 am

 

Halabi said:

I agree with Mjabali. There is nothing wrong with the pronunciation and making fun of it is distasteful and probably racist. At some point most Arabs in the West have been victims of discrimination–Syrians and Egyptians working in the GCC have definitely experienced it from fellow Arabs–so we should know how it feels.

Victims often react by demonizing the other side, and that’s a viscous cycle which is helping destroy our country. Ehsani wrote about how ethnic and sectarian issues have to be discussed and resolved for a new Syrian society to work. All sides need to be honest and respectful, however, so Sunnis shouldn’t ridicule dialects and religions and the other side shouldn’t question the nefarious genetic makeup of Sunnis.

The problem with all of this is that it’s theoretical. There’s a war being waged by a ruthless police state that has a sole objective: to keep Syria in the clutches of the criminals who are responsible for so much divisiveness and pain in the country. People see blood and torture videos, and then the rhetoric is amplified with sectarian propaganda. It’s hard to expect people to be civilized.

July 7th, 2012, 1:51 am

 

Amjad said:

“I personally believe that Manaf only got as far as he did because of his father”

That’s rich, considering the manner in which your own president assumed power. The world’s first hereditary republic.

One more weary time, I’ll remind everyone that Saddam wasn’t facing an internal revolution.

The defection of the highest ranking Sunni in the regime is not a minor event. Once more the regime is exposed for what it really is; a junta to whom even its fellow Alawites are as expendable as rounds of ammunition and barrels of tank fuel.

July 7th, 2012, 4:31 am

 

Atheist Syrian Salafist Against Dictatorships said:

Pretty soon, maybe in the next couple of weeks Maher al-Assad will probably get on a (his private jet) plane and fly to Paris and announce that he too is “breaking with” the regime and expect, no, demand, to be met with hugs and kisses from the SNC (western govts have rolled out the red carpet already).

If Tlass jr. is ok, why not Maher?

So what the hell has this manaf Tlass been doing in the RG all these years? Was he just in charge of designing their barracks, or maybe of running their charitable work (how he got his wealth)?

Why go to Paris? Jabal-ezaawiye is much more like it. Let’s see him prove how good and committed a soldier for the revolution he is by spending time under the rain of canon bombardment from his erstwhile comrades in the Assadist army.

July 7th, 2012, 5:12 am

 

Uzair8 said:

Prof JL was on BBC Radio 5 last night after 1 AM.

Listen from 13 min 40 sec. [Available for 7 more days]

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01kbq9h

July 7th, 2012, 7:25 am

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

#70 habib said: 29. Amir in Tel Aviv

And finally Egyptians can openly state how much they hate Israel. That’s the best thing that happened in this “spring”. But you won’t see any Zionists hailing this fact, they’re too busy crying crocodile tears over dead Islamists (as long as they’re killed by Israel’s enemies, of course).

Egyptians hated Israel before the revolution. Nothing changed regarding that hate. They also hated the fact that the peace treaty with Israel has been forced on them by the tyrant. I can only identify with their frustration.
Let us wait and see the outcome of Egypt’s spring.
.

July 7th, 2012, 7:53 am

 

Osama said:

90. AMJAD said:

Your not making much sense, the US in Iraq was hoping for regime change in Iraq by coupe, not by revolt – as they are today in Syria… the FSA is just a side show – the bearded wonders are only temporary measure. The US/France/UK are desperate for Assad to go into exile so they can declare victory and install the new dictatorship – your pipe dreams of freedom and dignity are just for the advertising.

I am consistently amazed how naive the Arab public continue to be about the intentions of the West… and Israel 🙂

I think you need to refresh your history and geopolitics – ultimately all the US and West want is to pull Syria into the “moderate” states, nothing more…

Then they can move to choke off Hizbollah and voila – they have Iran completely surrounded and the next step would be regime change in Iran and then they have secured control over the region and then they will have china by the short and curlies…

that’s it – its not about Shia or Sunni or rights or freedoms or any other feel-good or not-so-feel-good factor.

It is clear that the oppositionists are the only ones deluding themselves – the Arab spring has been compromised!

no Arab spring for Jordan or Morocco or Saudi or Bahrain or Kuwait of Oman or Qatar or Yemen or Algeria or Iraq. Tunis and Egypt caught them off guard, but they quickly recovered and set there minions to work to set things into the “right” direction.

July 7th, 2012, 8:41 am

 

Observer said:

ZOO

What is the point of the news about Sarkozy? Irrelevant except for one glaring thing: the powerful can be brought to justice, something you do not want for Syria with your Fredo above the law of the land AND of humanity

July 7th, 2012, 8:41 am

 

ann said:

“Friends of Syria” are indeed friends of opposition – 2012-07-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/indepth/2012-07/07/c_131701182.htm

[…]

Compared to the previous two meetings, the gathering in Paris on Friday was nothing new. That’s because the Western-dominated meetings have but one theme — forcing Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from office, analysts say.

The lopsided support for the Syrian opposition and insistence on pressuring Damascus have raised questions as to whether the “Friends of Syria” are indeed friends of the Syrian opposition?

The conference of the so-called “Friends of Syria” group brought together more than 100 mainly Western and Arab countries and international organizations as well as the fractious Syrian opposition.

[…]

The Paris meeting still focused on forcing al-Assad to quit and fell short of solutions on how Syria should end the crisis after al-Assad’s departure, Syrian political analysts said.

At the same time, Western assistance to Syrian opposition groups would certainly boost their fighting morale and cause them to continue to refuse to open political dialogue with the government. That in turn would do little for obtaining a political solution to the crisis except to fan the flames, the analysts said.

[…]

Western countries’ pressure on al-Assad to step down and economic sanctions against his government on one hand and more money and weaponry aid for the opposition, on the other, would only push Syria into the abyss of civil war, they said.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 8:56 am

 

Tara said:

Where is SNK?

I want to hear how evil Munaf Tlass is from SNK? Was he Aroori in disguise or just become one? How about his billions? Did he amass it behind Bashar back.? Should we accept Manaf as is or should we try him?

Come on SNk..share your thoughts with us.

July 7th, 2012, 8:56 am

 

ann said:

1 killed, 5 injured on Lebanese border by Syrian shelling – 2012-07-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-07/07/c_131700974.htm

One person was killed and five others were injured due to shelling from Syria that struck Lebanon ‘s northern border region of Wadi Khaled at dawn Saturday, the National News Agency reported.

The NNA report said that “Syrian artillery shelled a number of houses in Wadi Khaled in north Lebanon from around 1:15 a.m. until 3 a.m., killing Nadia al-Ouishi, 19 years old, and injuring Ahmad and Mustafa al-Makhal, both children, in Al-Mahatta neighborhood.”

It added that the house of local resident Berri Chehade was also struck, and two of his daughters and another child, Abir Ali al-Makhal were injured.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 9:00 am

 

nafdik said:

the Syrian people are in a state of war with the regime, as confirmed by Assad himself.

manaf is an important asset to gain and so is every defection.

the question of justice will be dealt with after victory and will be decided by a freely elected government if all goes well.

for now let us focus on winning the war.

July 7th, 2012, 9:01 am

 

ann said:

Clinton’s criticism of China over Syria “unacceptable” – 2012-07-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2012-07/07/c_131701262.htm

A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman on Saturday said that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s criticism of China at the latest Friends of Syria meeting is “unacceptable.”

“China is not impeding the process of resolving the Syrian issues,” Liu Weimin said at a regular press conference in response to a question on Clinton’s remarks on Friday in Paris.

At the third Friends of Syria meeting, Clinton said Russia and China were “holding up progress” in a settlement to the 16-month crisis, describing their stances as “no longer tolerable.”

But Liu retorted, “On the contrary, China has made an important contribution to safeguarding the UN Charter, the basic norms governing international relations, the peace and stability of the region and the fundamental interests of the Syrian people as well as pursuing a political solution to the Syrian issues.”

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 9:06 am

 

Uzair8 said:

94 Osama

“…the FSA is just a side show…”

From reports and video footage coming out of Syria it looks like Assad forces are taking a beating.

Anyway, whatever the west or anyone wants, as Observer said a few days ago, the opposition is several steps ahead of everyone else.

July 7th, 2012, 9:12 am

 

ann said:

“Friends of Syria” meeting further complicates Syrian crisis – 2012-07-07

• The meeting announced more support to Syria’s opposition and more sanctions on Assad’s gov’t.
• Observers say that what is going on in Syria is to some extent a proxy war among superpowers.
• Abdul-Aziz Khair said the Paris meeting is “a continuation of the international conflict”.

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/indepth/2012-07/07/c_131701371.htm

[…]

Observers believe that what is going on in Syria is to some extent a proxy war among superpowers. This claim was buoyed by a recent statement made by Annan, who told the Guardian in an interview that Syria will face a spreading civil war unless Russia, the West and Arab states end their “destructive competition” over the country.

“Russia does have influence and can encourage the Syrian government to implement fully the six-point plan and Security Council resolutions. But this task cannot be left to the Russians alone. I expect Iran to play a role. Those governments — the U.S. and the Friends of Syria — that have influence with the opposition should also play a role. If they continue with this destructive competition, everyone will lose,” Annan told the Guardian.

“They (the West) accuse the Russians of arming the (Syrian) government. The Russians accuse them of arming the opposition and flooding the place with weapons. This is instead of coming together to see what can be done,” he said.

Meanwhile, Abdul-Aziz Khair, a leading opposition leader in Syria, told Xinhua that the Paris meeting is “a continuation of the international conflict,” pointing out that it would not be conducive in helping the Syrian people.

He said the interest of the Syrian people requires a true understanding and a consensus among the world powers on the Annan peace plan.

Khair counted calls by some the opposition abroad for a foreign intervention in Syria as a “destructive illusion.”

Khair’s remarks were made as the ex-head of the oppositional Syrian National Council, Burhan Ghalioun, said Friday that had Russia used the veto at the Security Council, the protection of the Syrian people would come from outside the council, hinting unilateral military intervention.

The Russian Foreign Ministry also said the Paris meeting is unilateral, politically wrong, and immoral, because these “friends ” are relying exclusively on just one part of the opposition.

The ministry’s spokesman Alexander Lukashevich stressed that being friends with only a part of the Syrian opposition will just lead to intensifying contradictions and confrontation within Syria and making the stances of the conflicting sides in Syria more extreme, which can only lead to continuing violence and more tragedies.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 9:15 am

 

Tara said:

Amir

Thank you for your post in regard to the Arab Spring. Well said

July 7th, 2012, 9:22 am

 

ann said:

Russia opposes no-fly zone in Syria – 2012-07-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/video/2012-07/07/c_131700946.htm

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Gennady Gatilov, has said the introduction of a no-fly zone in Syria, proposed by the West-led Friends of Syria group, is a “counter-productive” and “unilateral” step.

Adding that the no-fly zone in Libya has resulted in heavy damage to infrastructure and civilian casualties,

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 9:23 am

 

ann said:

Army takes rebel stronghold – July 06, 2012

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/BRE8650HF/US-SYRIA-CRISIS-TOWN

[…]

The rebels said they had suffered heavy losses in battles which intensified on Wednesday night.

“This is a very fierce operation that is going on now. It seems Assad has sent all of his army to crush Khan Sheikhoun and the towns around it,” Abu Hamam said.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 9:31 am

 

Uzair8 said:

94 Osama

This regime shot itself in the foot many times. There were enough factors surrounding the Syrian situation to cause hesitation in taking a position. There was the bigger picture, the Isreali/zionist agenda, resistence, the fear of chaos (Iraq/Libya) etc etc.

For many of us the sheer brutality and disregard for human life and redlines pushed our desire to see Assad toppled up to the top of the list of priorities and caused other factors and concerns to drop down the list. On the weighing scale the balance was against the regime.

There are still many out there who are well meaning and genuinely concerned about the revolution and it’s consequences. They cannot be blamed as they haven’t been following the Syrian situation closely like some of us have. This is one thing I for one have tried to spread awareness of the appalling behaviour of the regime.

About the post Assad situation in Syria. I suspect that the situation will become worse and that Syria will fall in the sphere of the west and zionists however that doesn’t stop me from supporting the revolution.

Shaykh Yaqoubi, who is part of the revolution, was asked about this early on in the revolution and he said that the situation will get worse and there will be a substantial period of time that Syria is under the influence of zionists. It is in this context that a prophesized end-time tyrant will appear and play his role (Sufyani). The situation will then get better with the arrival of Imam Mahdi (AS).

The Q&A was originally from autumn 2011.

http://seekerofthesacredknowledge.wordpress.com/2012/05/31/shaykh-muhammad-al-yaqoubi-on-imam-mahdi-and-the-sufyani/

July 7th, 2012, 9:47 am

 

erin said:

Destruction of Syria is imminent, bravo Israel.
it seems that’s all what this 18 months turmoil accomplished.
Regime is a gang running the country, but the opposition is the counter gang, no democracy will ever be born, unless it is the Muslim Brotherhood sharia sugar glazed version, similar to Egypt, Libya.
The true revolutionaries are destroyed, swallowed by the tsunami of the radicals, foreign meddling with the revolution, only caused the killing of more innocents. who Cares if another Thug like Tlass or who ever defect, it is people who can’t get daily food, that’w what matter.
but for the politicians what matter is the warlords who are making the profit on both sides.
opposition is driving Syria into the Somali path forcing on people changes they don’t want.
Syria becoming like Somali, Gaza strip, Mali, Afghanistan was never the goal of the initial revolution.
Thanks for sharing.

July 7th, 2012, 9:59 am

 

zoo said:

95. Observer

Another lesson from Sarkozy ordeal: The one who accused others of corruption is himself guilty of corruption.
Despite their apparent self-righteousness, corruption is everywhere in the Western countries just better disguised and on large scale. Occasionally one is caught by the judicial system and usually gets away with it.
In France 2 president in a row accused of corruption, that’s a record.

July 7th, 2012, 10:15 am

 

mjabali said:

There are Sunnis that use the Qaf as well. I have warned you several times from making over the top accusations and belittling any religion. The issue was not the words Qaf but the insults against Sunnis that came after. You were placed on moderation for one week previously for insulting me directly.

SC Moderator

The moderator of this blog AGAIN took one of my comments out. It was about how Sunnis always make fun of the way Alawis pronounce the letter “Qaf”

There are some people on this blog that use racist terms when talking about the Alawis. They were let to do this. The list is long of the insults and wrong terms used.

Thank you moderation for disturbing a real discussion between Syrians. Isn’t this the case with Syria now: You have people telling people what to say and do?

Isn’t freedom of speech a corner stone of any debate?

Please moderator put my comment back and let us discuss matters.

Of course the moderator is going to ban me again…

July 7th, 2012, 10:32 am

 

zoo said:

The Manaf’s effect on the media. How long will it last?

The tide begins to turn
Diplomacy is being overtaken by the armed struggle. But on both scores, Syria’s embattled president, Bashar Assad, is steadily losing ground
http://www.economist.com/node/21558276

Syrian’s Defection Signals Eroding Support for Assad
By NEIL MacFARQUHAR
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/07/world/
middleeast/opponents-of-syrias-president-gather-in-paris.html

Is Manaf Tlass’s Defection a Sign That Assad’s Regime Is Cracking?
Adam Garfinkle

http://blogs.the-american-interest.com/garfinkle/2012/07/06/is-manaf-tlasss-defection-a-sign-that-assads-regime-is-cracking/

July 7th, 2012, 10:34 am

 

majedkhaldoun said:

I wonder if Professor Landis still think that Assad will survive till 2013-2014
One analyst said
on political tract Assad will be history before the end of 2012,that if there is no military changes on the ground

It seems that the weakest point for Assad is in Eastern Syria.

July 7th, 2012, 10:34 am

 

mjabali said:

Uzair said:

“About the post Assad situation in Syria. I suspect that the situation will become worse and that Syria will fall in the sphere of the west and zionists however that doesn’t stop me from supporting the revolution.”

No comment

July 7th, 2012, 10:35 am

 

irritated said:

109. majedkhaldoun

In his last post, J.L implies that Manaf Tlass is the next president of Syria… very soon.
I am not sure he is as good in predictions as you are.

July 7th, 2012, 10:36 am

 

bronco said:

107. mjabali

The Druzes also use “Qaf”

July 7th, 2012, 10:40 am

 

Norman said:

When is the presidential election in Syria, early in 2014 or late that year,

July 7th, 2012, 10:50 am

 

zoo said:

If I was a Gulf citizen and especially a Qatari or a Saudi and if I care for my safety, I would spend summer in my villa in Bodrum or Istanbul rather than in my villa in Aley or Bhamdoun or a furnished flat in Beirut.

Saudi Arabia warns citizens against travel to Lebanon because of instability
By The Associated Press July 2, 2012

BEIRUT – The Saudi Press Agency says the kingdom is warning its citizens against travel to Lebanon because of instability.

Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Saudi+Arabia+warns+citizens+against+travel+Lebanon+because/6871359/story.html#ixzz1zwrq6dXM

July 7th, 2012, 10:53 am

 

Norman said:

Shami,

I don’t know what you are talking about, I am proud that i am from Hama and still registered there, I am proud of my father , where Syria is today has nothing to do with Hama and has a lot to do with Iran and the Syria’s stand with the Palestinians, it has nothing to do with Islam, nothing could justify what the Syrians are doing to each other, Democracy has nothing to do with it it is just a justification to destroy Syria militarily and economically for years to come.

July 7th, 2012, 10:59 am

 

zoo said:

Will Clinton “pay a price” for her hysterical and undiplomatic attack on China and Russia during the FOS meeting in Paris?
Note that one of her supporter, the ubiquous Syrian activist-actor Khaled Abu Salah was present in the audience, invited by Hollande. He also made an angry speech. There are video showing him during the meeting. Next PM?

China slams Clinton’s remarks over Syria stance
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/china-slams-clintons-remarks-over-syria-stance.aspx?pageID=238&nID=24964&NewsCatID=356

China rebuffed on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s accusation that Beijing and Moscow have hindered the resolution of the crisis in Syria today, saying any attempt to “slander” China was doomed to fail.

July 7th, 2012, 11:15 am

 

omen said:

#53NORMAN
I still think that Syria will be divided, no trust is left, nobody can sleep with another from different religion as his neighbor.

people of douma are fishing parts of their children out of the trash. but you have to live with the discomfort of living next to undesirables.

i’m so sorry for you.

July 7th, 2012, 11:22 am

 

Shami said:

Norman ,once again you did not answer my interrogation.

And regarding your repetetive fear of facing the syrian reality without the shabiha ,corrupts and sectarian killers,in your own opinion ila al abadist regimes can they end in a different manner other than à la Qadafi ?

And are the hamwis who gave all the humanity ,esteem and respect to the refugees that you were so terrorists,so sectarians,so corrupt,so torturers ,so murderers that you are now dreaming for a shabiha entity antagonizing a muslim arab environment ?
Why shall you betray those who welcomed yours in the most noble manners ?

Is your baathism based on your believe on the destiny of this people who is at 90% muslim or on hate against this people that push you to link your fate to a small minority that when it had the opportunity to spread corruption and to mass kill did not hesitate ?

July 7th, 2012, 11:27 am

 

irritated said:

If the FSA keep repeating that it controls 70% of the country, where are then the massive demonstrations in these areas?
Or maybe the FSA does not allow them? or maybe it is 7%… and the FSA armed men are the only people left in these areas.

July 7th, 2012, 11:30 am

 

omen said:

the fat man i mistakenly thought a regime member at the cairo meeting, seated on stage at the conference table, turned out to be iraq foreign minister hoshyar zebari.

when did iraq come to represent the “opposition”?

July 7th, 2012, 11:31 am

 

zoo said:

Syria Revolutionary Leader Khalid Abu Salah Speaks at Paris Friends of Syria Conference 6-July-12

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOpOI_qN2c8

“He calls for a No Fly Zone and a Buffer Zone although he tells the Conference that the Syrian people are making their own Buffer Zone by their own hands. He says the Friends of Syria needs to arm the opposition and that the UN will never do anything because of the Russian Veto and that the World should not allow the Russians to block help to the Syrian people. ”

Khalid for the next SNC leader!

July 7th, 2012, 11:35 am

 

irritated said:

121. omen

Iraq hold the current chairmanship of the AL.
This was an AL meeting inviting the opposition.

July 7th, 2012, 11:37 am

 

zoo said:

Lashing back at Hollande and Clinton

Russia calls ‘Friends of Syria’ group ‘Immoral’
(DP-News – agencies)

http://www.dp-news.com/en/detail.aspx?articleid=125552

MOSCOW- Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said that Meetings being organized by the Friends of Syria group are one-sided and immoral.

“Russia, China and a number of other countries which have traditionally friendly relations with the Syrian Arab Republic and its people have refused to join those ‘friends’ because we believe that the format that they have chosen is not only politically wrong, but also immoral,” Lukashevich said.

July 7th, 2012, 11:45 am

 

Tara said:

Zoo

Ah. Spending a summer in Bhamdoun or Aley? I’d love to do that.

July 7th, 2012, 11:46 am

 

bronco said:

124. Shami

I don’t understand.
Do you mean that you can recognize a “bad” guy by his special way of prononcing the ‘qaf’, or all the guys who use the ‘qaf’ are bad?

July 7th, 2012, 11:48 am

 

zoo said:

Egypt has now a “Christian Brotherhood’

http://www.asharq-e.com/news.asp?section=1&id=30248

[Asharq Al-Awsat] Where did you get the idea to form the Christian Brotherhood?

[Nakhla] We got this idea after the Muslim Brotherhood successfully came to power in Egypt; therefore we decided to establish an equivalent group, named the Christian Brotherhood. This is a political organization whose objective is to reach power [in Egypt].

[Asharq Al-Awsat] What steps have you taken to turn this idea into a reality?

[Nakhla] After we reached an agreement on this, idea, and presented it to the public, we received thousands of membership requests to join this organization. After we complete the membership procedures, we will register the group at the Egyptian Ministry of Social Affairs, so that this organization has legal status.

July 7th, 2012, 11:54 am

 

aldendeshe said:

Bedouin is not an insult, calling someone a bastard is.

SC Moderator

SC MODERATOR.
I really despise that you keep that Mossad Agent SHAMI assult comment on me, but you removed my indirect reply to him that is a fact: [EDITED By Moderator]

July 7th, 2012, 11:54 am

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Congratulations Libya.
Turnout in polling stations is heartwarming.
Welcome to the free world!

Cheers Tara!
.

July 7th, 2012, 12:04 pm

 

Antoine said:

Syrian woman soldier joins all-male battallion of FSA :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bKrSnE49M2I&feature=relmfu

Interesting thing is she is unveiled yet uses all the Islamic references that are used in FSA videos inclduing Takbir in the end, it looks a bit funny. Also the Sunni men in the FSA have no problem in allowing her to take centre-stage.

( FSA is not homogenous).

July 7th, 2012, 12:05 pm

 

Norman said:

For all of you who worry about me, don’t, i live among the Jews, Indians , Muslims and Christians in a place where we all are equal not like the Mideast, My Syria, the one i was born in and belong to not like what Shami said that i am a refugee from Mardin, Mardin is Syrian, Syria of yesteryears is dead to me , YOU KILLED IT, collecting the pieces will not make it whole again. Shame on present day Syrians,they killed their offsprings trying to pull them to their sides.

July 7th, 2012, 12:08 pm

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

EAJ: Young men in Libya forming “human corridors” to protect voters in polling stations. I’m moved.
.

July 7th, 2012, 12:10 pm

 

Antoine said:

NORMAN,

Shami is basically asking you why do you support the regime despite knowing what it did to Hama.

It is like a person from Suwayda( Jabal Druz) supporting Adib Shishakli.

It doesn’t make sense.

Norman, can I ask you a question ?

What are the 5 most common surnames in Hama ?

July 7th, 2012, 12:49 pm

 

Antoine said:

Amir in TLV,

You are wrong in saying that “Egyptians hate Israel” or “Egyptians hate Camp David” , a minority mainly Islamists and Nasserists certainly do, but the majority realize that Camp David is a necessary evil, and what Sadat did in the 1970s helped Egypt avoid a lot of suffering, what Sadat did definitely helped Egypt avoid the sort of Civil War that occurred in Algeria, Libya, Iraq and now Syria.

Sadat with his “infitah” definitely helped the millions of downtrodden Egyptians get a bit of respectful treatment from the State.

Anwar Sadat is more popular in Egypt than you can imagine, atleast he was one of the few Arab rulers who was genuinely concerned about the well-being of his country and his people, and many Egyptians recognize this.

Now in my opinion what Sadat did was not at all good for Syria or in fact for the wider Arab world, Sadat basically threw Syria, Palestine, Arab Nationalism into cold water. Sadat was good from the perspectives of Egyptians, a leader should be judged according to what he does for his own country.

July 7th, 2012, 12:57 pm

 

ann said:

We need JOBS here at HOME madam secretary Clinton NOT Paris, Syria and Afghanistan!!!

Poor US hiring shows economy slows to a crawl – Sunday, Jul 08, 2012

http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/biz/archives/2012/07/08/2003537202

July 7th, 2012, 12:59 pm

 

Antoine said:

SYRIAN NATIONALIST PARTY said :

“Him and a dozen Sunni’s from the provincial lower class families.

__________________________________________________________________

Including the Sharaa, Attar, Muallem families and the tribal chieftain families of al-Raqqah ?

July 7th, 2012, 12:59 pm

 
 

ann said:

About Time!

Lebanese army on high alert on border with Syria – 2012-07-07

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-07/07/c_131701444.htm

“Army units in the area are on high alert and the required field measures were taken to address any violation of the Syrian- Lebanese borders,” the Lebanese army said in a statement.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 1:27 pm

 

Aldendeshe said:

@ANTOINE

YESSSSSSSSSSSSSS.

In my opinion they have no dignity or honor at all to have served under this Baathist regime for 40+ years that now driven Syria to the bottomless pit. They did not serve in capacity of legal representatives of the people, they served as stooges appointed by an illegal regime, a MAFIA that stole the wealth of Syrians and horded it to themselves, exported all the resources to Jewish bankers. I have far more respect to Alawites and Christians than I have for them Sunni stooges that served them not as elected official by the people, but a hired help. I personally may forgive minority serving person in civil position, but not one who served in the army or security position, but will never forget the treachery and forgive the dastardly deed of a serving Sunni. I can work with Bashar Assad, but I can not work with any of those you mentioned.

July 7th, 2012, 1:34 pm

 

ann said:

Annan: Countries Which Criticizes Russia for Its Stance Towards Syria, Send Weapons and Money – Jul 07, 2012

http://www.sana.sy/eng/22/2012/07/07/429974.htm

[…]

In an interview with the French daily “Le Monde”, published Saturday, Annan said the countries, which comment on Russia, claim they want a peaceful solution in Syria, but they take individual or collective initiatives that undermine the UN Security Council resolutions.

Annan added that the focus on Russia irritates Russian officials too much, expressing regret over the Syrian opposition’s rejection of the Geneva Conference decisions.

” It is strange for the opposition to claim that it was betrayed or sold,” Annan said.

The envoy added that the principle of “the responsibility to protect”, which was used in Libya, has created a problem since China and Russia have considered that they were deceived.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 1:55 pm

 

ann said:

China rejects Clinton’s criticism over Syria – July 7, 2012

Foreign ministry official says suggestion that Beijing and Moscow should pay a price for supporting Assad is ‘totally unacceptable’

http://www.timesofisrael.com/china-rejects-clintons-criticism-over-syria/

July 7th, 2012, 2:10 pm

 

ann said:

Diplomatic tightrope: US stepping up war of words over Syria? – 06 July, 2012

http://www.rt.com/news/clinton-syria-russia-price-602/

Hillary Clinton’s demand that Russia and China pay the price for “blockading” the Syrian peace process may lead to more global strife. Will opposition to US policy now equate to supporting tyranny and evil?

­On Friday, Friends of Syria sought ways to press a transition plan on official Damascus. Assad regime officials forming a unity government with the opposition to lead the Arab country to presidential elections had been a key outcome of global talks in Geneva the previous week.

In a sudden turn, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pounced on Moscow and Beijing for “holding up progress” in the Syrian crisis. Clinton urged the 100-plus nations gathered in Paris to make it clear to Russia and China that the two will “pay a price” for supporting the Assad government.

[…]

“Mrs. Clinton is converting a regional problem, a crisis [among] Syria and its neighbors, into a potentially global problem,” Almond told RT. “Those countries that do not agree with every word of Mrs. Clinton are to be considered supporters of tyranny and enemies of good. This is creating a much more dangerous global answer.”

Clinton’s recent statement seems to backtrack on the global consensus hammered out in Geneva. Still, it may prove to be even more significant than it appears.

“This seeming turning-around would be bewildering, if there were a sense that the agreement which was reached last week was what Friends of Syria actually wanted to play out in the Arab country. This proves once again that from the outset of this crisis, the end goal was to remove Bashar Al-Assad and his government,” James Corbett, the editor of news website The Corbett Report, told RT.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 2:33 pm

 

Amjad said:

“We need JOBS here at HOME madam secretary Clinton NOT Paris, Syria and Afghanistan!!!”

Duh, historically wars have always been good for the US economy, since it’s the country that ends up selling both the weapons and doing the work to rebuild what its own weapons destroyed. Amazing Yanks, Uncle Sam always comes out on top. Remember how a few years back all you American haters were crowing that the Euro was going to replace the dollar as the global currency? Ha ha ha. Ha ha ha. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

July 7th, 2012, 2:51 pm

 

Norman said:

Antoine,

Syria is more important than Hama, what happened in hama was terrible but saved Syria for 30 years, nobody has the right to carry arms against the government of his country, they can protest and use civil disobedient but should not cause the death of their countrymen, the government should not abuse people and treat them as the Syrian government did but nothing justify what we see in Syria,

If you are trying to see if i am from Hama, I am from Souq AL Shajra, Akram Hourani family was close to my grand father house, i never though lived in Hama or went to school there, I was blessed, lived in a place where there was one Mosques for all Muslims and there was no churches, we learned religion at school, the right way the one that told us that we are all the same,

So no i don’t know the big families in Hama and don’t care about the families, tell me about what the individuals did for their country and their own achievement, good or bad families mean nothing in my book, only under achievers hide behind their families. Tribes, families and loyalties to these is destroying Syria,

The problem with some people in Syria and out of Syria Syrians like Shami, is that they think that you have to be of specific religion or family to be all what you can be and with that mentality Syria would be better divided so everybody can have a chance,

July 7th, 2012, 2:54 pm

 

Tara said:

Norman

The problem in Syria now is that people like you convinced themselves that what happened in Hama killing 30,000 people in cold blood is justifiable. Time to face the ugly truth… If it happened to your fellow christians, you would have cried us many rivers, and the irony is, most of us would have cried with you. In your (generic case), It happened to us…your Muslim countrymen so who really cares?

Sorry to be blunt. It needs to be said.

July 7th, 2012, 3:10 pm

 

irritated said:

The Syrian revolution for dummies:

– Russia is blinded by its love for Bashar, the USA is blinded by its hatred for Iran.
– Russia doesn’t mind that Bashar kills Syrians with Russian weapons, the USA and the arm producing countries don’t mind that armed gangs kills Syrians with western made weapons. It’s all goes to the bank.
– The West: If Bashar goes by force, Syria will become paradise on earth
– Russia, China and many others: If Bashar goes by force, Syria will become hell on earth.
– There is no plan B. Syria is plan B, plan A was Iran, it was postponed for now as too costly.
– Sunnis: the Syria government is ruled by corrupted Alawites
– Alawites: Most high positions are held by corrupted Sunnis example Mounaf Tlass.
– Facebook is a good source of false information
– Youtube videos show that Syrians got talent.
– As the media love crimes, blood and bashing, they love Syrian revolution
– Some say the rebels are islamists, some say they are secular, some don’t dare say what they are for fear of reprisal

More to come…

July 7th, 2012, 3:16 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

Sunnis in the military will be asking themselves whether they should keep fighting for the regime when a high ranking figure like Manaf has abandoned it.

Will they keep fighting on and remain part of the regime? Are they more loyal than Manaf was? The Alawite-Sunni arrangement is well and truely over when the top Sunni breaks away. There is no logic in them remaining with Assad other than the threat to their lives.

The regime has already fallen. It won’t be able to stand up again (back to how it was). Unless the prostrate regime crawls away, the opposition is going to have to liquidate it so as to allow them to drag it away more easily.

July 7th, 2012, 3:27 pm

 

bronco said:

Tara

No one cries for armed men who hold weapons against their government, occupy a city by terror and commit murders on civilians, do you?

July 7th, 2012, 3:27 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

146. Irritated

– Syrians: The regime is guilty of unforgivable crimes and has shed much blood. Either it leaves voluntarily or face being forced out..

July 7th, 2012, 3:33 pm

 

omen said:

the high for damascus today was 100 degrees fahrenheit. how many are without electricity?

July 7th, 2012, 3:37 pm

 

irritated said:

Uzair8

In view of how easy it has been for Munaf to run away, all the arguments that the high ranking can’t leave because they are been watched just make no sense. Who wanna go, goes. In any case I doubt many have as many connections in the West than millionaire Munaf…

In view of the abysmal cracks in the opposition, anti-regime are desperately wishing for big cracks in the Syrian government.

Unfortunately Munaf may turn to be one small crack easily patched.

July 7th, 2012, 3:38 pm

 

omen said:

80. S.A. said: As for Tlass and Khaddam, both have benefited and survived from the corruption and the privileged lives … Khaddam … was paid huge sums of money for helping dump nuclear waste in the ports of Syria.

where can i read about this?

July 7th, 2012, 3:44 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco

I do not know what you are talking about. Hama? The 30,000 lives murdered in Hama were not armed men occupying a city by terror and killing civilians. There were ordinary innocent civilians killed in the most atrocious way, sometimes by lining brothers above age 12 near each other then executing every other keeping one alive and killing the other, and that was a rather humane way of killing.

In my opinion, Hama massacre played a significant role in shaping the Syrian revolution 2011-2012. We just know what we are dealing with…

July 7th, 2012, 3:47 pm

 

jna said:

House to house on the frontline in Homs. Russian reporter embedded with Syrian Army soldiers.
http://www.syrianews.cc/syria-homs-reporting-from-the-front/

July 7th, 2012, 3:50 pm

 

irritated said:

Uzair9

– The armed rebels have mislead Syrians into a bloody quagmire they called ‘La Revolucion’. It’s time they stop or be stopped.

July 7th, 2012, 3:50 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

#150 Omen

~38°C

Imagine chasing peaceful demonstrators and rebels in that heat? I can imagine them taking their frustration out on anyone they manage to catch.

#151 Irritated

Prof Landis also thinks the Sunnis want to head to the door.

July 7th, 2012, 3:54 pm

 

bronco said:

#153 Tara

Note that 1,000 Syrians soldiers died… from what? stones?

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

The Hama massacre (Arabic: مجزرة حماة‎) occurred in February 1982, when the Syrian army, under the orders of the country’s president, Hafez al-Assad, conducted a scorched earth operation against the town of Hama in order to quell a revolt by the Sunni Muslim community against the regime of al-Assad.[1] The Hama massacre, carried out by the Syrian Army under commanding General Rifaat al-Assad, President Assad’s younger brother, effectively ended the campaign begun in 1976 by Sunni Islamic groups, including the Muslim Brotherhood, against Assad’s regime, whose leaders were disproportionately from president Assad’s own Alawite sect.

Initial diplomatic reports from western countries stated that 1,000 were killed.[2][3] Subsequent estimates vary, with the lower estimates claiming that at least 10,000 Syrian citizens were killed,[4] while others put the number at 20,000 (Robert Fisk),[1] or 40,000 (Syrian Human Rights Committee).[5][6] About 1,000 Syrian soldiers were killed during the operation and large parts of the old city were destroyed.
Alongside such few events as the Black September Massacre in Jordan,[7] the attack has been described as one of “the single deadliest acts by any Arab government against its own people in the modern Middle East”.[8] The vast majority of the victims were civilians.[9]

According to Syrian media, anti-government rebels initiated the fighting, who “pounced on our comrades while sleeping in their homes and killed whomever they could kill of women and children, mutilating the bodies of the martyrs in the streets, driven, like mad dogs, by their black hatred.” Security forces then “rose to confront these crimes” and “taught the murderers a lesson that has snuffed out their breath”[10]
….

July 7th, 2012, 4:00 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Norman said (#116): “where Syria is today has nothing to do with Hama and has a lot to do with Iran and the Syria’s stand with the Palestinians”

So the Palestinian issue is linked to the Assad regime’s behavior?

For goodness sake!

Norman, you come across as a decent, well-educated person who cares a lot about Syria. But you play blame games and wish for solutions that don’t exist and can’t happen with the Assad regime.

Please try to think more clearly and objectively about what is happening INSIDE Syria and TO Syrians at the hands of their own “government”.

July 7th, 2012, 4:00 pm

 

AJ said:

Thwaiba Kanafani, a brave woman leaves Toronto Canada and joins the Free Syrian Army to help eliminate this despicable regime

God Bless her and all those working on removing Assad and his dogs from power.

July 7th, 2012, 4:05 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Tara, Bronco prefers the Syrian’ regime’s version of what they did in Hama and he’s sticking to it!

July 7th, 2012, 4:13 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco

So what does that mean? You burn a whole city with it’s inhabitants because 1000 soldiers died? No one know the exact numbers of the men, women, and children murdered but lots if us know how they died… I am not making things up. I know first hand. The way they were slaughtered were similar to the way Houla massacre was carried out. Please do not justify the unjustifiable..

July 7th, 2012, 4:15 pm

 

bronco said:

Tara

No use to discuss. You stick to your version, I stick to Wikipedia version

July 7th, 2012, 4:38 pm

 

Syrialover said:

At last. An account from a defector that offers some good insights and observations.

It’s an interview with oil official Abdo Husameddin, who left Syria in March. He spoke to a closed meeting of Friends of Syria in Turkey in April then went quiet under wraps with security protection. He finally felt safe enough to resurface at the recent opposition meeting in Cairo.

Mr. Husameddin, 58 years old, worked in Syria’s state-controlled oil industry for 33 years. He was long a member of Syria’s ruling Ba’ath Party, and served as deputy minister of petroleum and mineral resources since 2009, one of two deputies under the minister. In the three decades before that, he held various executive positions at state-run oil companies, and as adviser to the minister.

From article: “Syria Defector’s Little-Traveled Path” (WSJ July 6, 2012)

President Assad’s top security, ministry and military officials have proven fiercely loyal, and many come from the president’s Alawite minority. But the 1.2 million civil servants in Syria’s state institutions are, like broader society, polarized between pro- and anti-regime Syrians, according to Mr. Husameddin and current and former Syrian officials who corroborated much of his account of the dynamics at the country’s state offices.

Mr. Husameddin attributes the lack of high-level defections largely to stepped-up security measures, a characterization echoed by other, lower-level state employees who have turned against the Assad regime. Safe passage out of the country is becoming increasingly tricky, Mr. Husameddin said, and there are few incentives to risk uprooting families and livelihoods to join a fragmented opposition.

Many state employees in Syria have turned against the regime but are staying in their jobs, he added, saying they are “defecting silently.”

“When the regime falls, we need these people,” he said. “We don’t want the state to collapse. In fact, they will be beneficial in the next phase.” Regional powers have even raised the prospect of offering tens of millions of dollars to woo potential defectors from government, said two people familiar with such offers. “A lot of money is being paid to ply people away,” said one of these people. “But there’s also the thinking that some people should be kept in place for the day after.”

Few government officials, he said, believe the government’s version of Syria’s uprising, which holds that the regime is battling foreign-backed terrorists. “Everyone inside government knows exactly what is going on,” he said.

The turning point for Mr. Husameddin came, he said, after he heard officials in a meeting at the ministry openly agreeing that the opposition “deserved nothing less than to be rolled over by tanks.”

He described how government employees are closely tracked for their political allegiances, with offices full of informers who write up reports on dissenting behavior among their colleagues and send in names of suspects. He called them “civilian shabeeha,” playing on the term for the armed pro-regime thugs that many Syrians say have helped the government crack down on protests.

“How hard it is for a person to be unsafe in his own country,” [he told the closed Friends of Syria meeting]. He described the gruesome video images to emerge from Syria as “barely 1% of the painful reality Syria is living.”

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303684004577508982056619046.html?mod=WSJ_hp_us_mostpop_read

July 7th, 2012, 4:41 pm

 

Norman said:

Tara,
I know more about Hama than you do, i have family there, our grand father house was destroyed, that does not change the fact that Hama has a history in Islamic fundamentalism and in 1965- 1966, they rose against Amin AL Hafez, Salah AL Din AL Bitar in a rebellion that was crushed, the MB do not have the Syria’s interest in their heart, and the conflict in reality is not between Sunni and Shea as you like to portray, so you can galvanize your supporters and remind them with religion, it is between the people who want secular state where everybody is equal and the others who want an Islamic state where you have not just to be Muslim but Sunni Muslim to be equal, I doubt that you are crying for the end to Christianity in Iraq at the hand of you supporters AL Qaeda or the killing of Christians and Shea in Pakistan or the significant discrimination against the Christians in Egypt, Arab Christian are going to end up either leaving or establishing their own state so they feel safe and equal, like Israel, because of the lack of understanding from your supporters, you and your supporters are responsible for the demise of the Arab Nation.

July 7th, 2012, 4:47 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Bronco, You mean the bit in Wikipedia that says “according to Syrian media”.

July 7th, 2012, 4:48 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco

Ok. Please note that I and others have not been able to change your opinion one single time since we started discussing.

July 7th, 2012, 4:50 pm

 

Tara said:

Norman, dear

You do not know more than I know…take my word for it.

July 7th, 2012, 4:52 pm

 

Observer said:

ZOO
To my knowledge there has been no indictment of Sarkozy and de Villepin was found innocent and Nixon resigned to avoid impeachment.

Corruption is worldwide, look at the recent scandal with Bo in China, or Putin jailing his opponents on trumped charges or so the media say.

You cannot be selective with your media stories.

Now if you want to talk corruption and graft and torture and criminality and barbarity, I will send you to the discourse of those that left Fredo’s jails including Ghaith Sarraj who wrote from Tadmur to Harvard. I have family members that suffered the same fate as Dr. Sarraj with torture every other day and extra torture whenever letters from Amnesty came through. I have personally listened to a member of the dreaded secret service tell a diplomat about the Amnesty International chapter in his country namely Norway to tell these people sending letters on behalf of prisoners that these letters are used as toilet paper and that more letters will mean more torture.

If I were not a personal witness to the exchange in the late 80’s I would not have believed it.

Your regime is the most despicable and abject barbarity Syrians have ever experienced and your self serving moralizing about the ubiquity of corruption is to say the least disgusting.

Armed terrorist gangs and world wide conspiracy from CIA Salafi Mossad Alqaeda Ottoman Imperialist Colonialist agents and infiltrators my foot indeed. How on earth can you swallow such garbage?

July 7th, 2012, 4:53 pm

 

bronco said:

Tara

..and continue to greet Munaf Tlass and hail his future collaboration with the FSA instead of sending him to La Hague for his crimes in Hama. Great consistency, indeed.

You should do what others more consistent are doing:

http://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/37052/World/Region/War-crimes-complaint-against-Syria-exminister-in-F.aspx

War crimes complaint against Syria ex-minister in France
Syrian rights group files complaint with French authorities, seeking to prosecute former defence minister Tlass for ‘war crimes including the massacre in the city of Hama in 1982’
AFP , Sunday 18 Mar 2012

A Syrian rights group said on Sunday it had filed a war crimes complaint with French authorities against former Syrian defence minister Mustafa Tlass who was reported this week to be in Paris.

The Syrian Association for Freedom provided AFP with a copy of the complaint it had filed with Paris prosecutors on Friday accusing Tlass of responsibility in “several war crimes including the massacre in the city of Hama in 1982.”

July 7th, 2012, 4:57 pm

 

zoo said:

#168 Observer

Chirac was condemned… some are able to pass through the net with their connections

“How on earth can you swallow such garbage?”

The garbage I can’t swallow is yours: Dividing Syria into sectarian and ethnical regions and printing a new phone book as the ultimate proof of modernity.

July 7th, 2012, 5:06 pm

 

Norman said:

Tara,

From what i have seen from you, it is hard consider you in the know it all.

July 7th, 2012, 5:07 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco,

I have no affection to Tlass family. I told you so. I have no affection to the corrupt or the murderers. Mustafa Tlass was the defense minister alright during Hama massacre and ideally should be tried for crimes against humanity and should also be stripped from his wealth. Munaf, ideally, should be tried and punished if found guilty. Yet, one must not be emotional when the lives of the masses are in stake. Would I give amnesty to the devil himself had Yara’s life be on the line. I would certainly do. The right group who filed suit against Tlass is stupid and hypocritical too. Why did not the file suit against Rifaat al Assad or Khaddam first? And are they a legit right group or infiltrators acting to discourage defection?

July 7th, 2012, 5:12 pm

 

bronco said:

165. Syrialover said:

Bronco, You mean the bit in Wikipedia that says “according to Syrian media”.

I mean the whole article that says clearly it was to quell an armed rebellion from Moslem Brotherhood and Islamists.
Was it or not?

July 7th, 2012, 5:12 pm

 

bronco said:

#172 Tara

Why did not the file suit against Rifaat al Assad or Khaddam first?

Do you mean that because they have not filed a suit against other criminals, they are “stupid and hypocritical” to do it for this one?

Sorry, your logic and consistency is beyond me, I abandon

July 7th, 2012, 5:17 pm

 

Tara said:

Norman@171

You’d be mistaken if you think I need validation..

July 7th, 2012, 5:22 pm

 

Tara said:

Bronco

You think if you abandon an argument, you win it?

Enjoy your winning.

July 7th, 2012, 5:24 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

172. Tara said:
.. should also be stripped from his wealth.

This reminds me of old show trials on the Syrian TV where the first question was: “Min Ayna Laka Haza?”

I guess the last question was: Shall we share 50/50?

July 7th, 2012, 5:29 pm

 

Syrialover said:

It’s true what Norman says about the history of Islamic extremism in Syria, and how it has firmed Syrians’ belief in secular government. I believe it will seal Syrians rejection of Islamists.

Islamists were only one element of wider strikes and protests against the regime that broke out in Syria in 1979-80. As part of Hafaz Assad’s crackdown on this civilian economic unrest the MB were pursued with special vigor and implicated in bombings and assassinations that had Aleppo terrorized in the early 80s (deja vu, sounds familiar?).

Whatever the truth of their activities in Syria then, those were pretty wild days in general for Islamic extremists. They violently invaded and occupied the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia in 1979 (kept quiet at the time but now well documented), assassinated Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in 1981, and had the Arab world on edge.

That’s when Hafaz and Rifaat Assad felt free to show their true depravity and brutality against anyone who questioned their regime, bringing out supersized sledgehammers to kill an ant with their attack on Hama and the Tadmor prison massacre.

They then firmly pulled the curtains around Syria and suppressed information internally on what had happened, but making clear to Syrians what lay in store for dissenters and the mass fate of those who had the misfortune to even live in the same town.

The west, with limited information channels 30 years ago, and caught up in the cold war at the time, also heard very little about what the Assads were doing inside Syria.

Not any more.

July 7th, 2012, 5:37 pm

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

I’m disgusted by (educated) people who justify the Hama massacre.

a secular state should be something that the majority agrees upon. Secularism cannot be imposed. The MB is a legit political movement. If you want to face them, do it in the parliament. Not with tanks, destruction and massacres.

Norman, I can’t express fully how disgusted I am with your shameful comments. The Syria you miss is dead. I agree that resorting to arms was a bad decision. But I blame the junta for this. I don’t blame the young and frustrated Syrians who see no future, and who are joining the armed revolution out of despair.

You left Syria. You now live in the US, the land of the free. You were defeated. The young Syrians who are now fighting the junta, refuse to be defeated the way you were. They want to change, not to run away like a coward.

To the young Syrians who are fighting to reclaim their land, my respect. For you no respect. Just disgust and boooo.
.

July 7th, 2012, 5:51 pm

 

Ghufran said:

A lot of people are impressed by Qatar’s quick ascension, I think it is a bubble,and I am not sure when it will burst ,I am more interested in how the emirate with 85% foreign-born population will respond to any military or security threat beside the obvious: asking Uncle Sam to help. This is a good view of Qatar’s recent campaign to use its wealth to buy influence:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jul/07/qatar-takes-on-the-world
The subject is relevant to Syria,sooner or later a new political class will emerge after the fall of the regime,Syria then will need a lot of help for reconstruction and infrastructure projects,none of the money needed will come free,lenders want a piece of Syria in return,and at the top will be Qatar and KSA,so, be ready to see herds of ready to be bought politicians competing to please those overweight Sheikhs .
Mustafa Tlas may not be very happy with neither the regime,nor his son (manaf), his statement to France 24 is available online. Manaf’s departure (or defection depending on what you know), will only increase the isolation of Bashar ,and that is good,and sharpen the sectarian teeth of the Syrian crisis, which is bad.

July 7th, 2012, 5:58 pm

 

Stick to the Truth said:

179. Amir in Tel Aviv said:

I’m disgusted by (educated) people who justify the Hama massacre.

a secular state should be something that the majority agrees upon. Secularism cannot be imposed. The MB is a legit political movement. If you want to face them, do it in the parliament. Not with tanks, destruction and massacres.

The same shall apply to HAMAS.
Is that happening?

July 7th, 2012, 6:04 pm

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

more high ranks defect. From today
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zqsXnjAubo&feature=relmfu
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=_uvO_VyvSwE
Defections from the mu7abarat is especially painful for this junta.
—————–

STTT,

Yes. Hamas enjoys legitimacy within the Palestinian society. It is legit. So is the Egyptian MB.
.

July 7th, 2012, 6:13 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Jordanian politician pulls gun on opponent during live TV debate on Syria:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2012/07/07/jordanian-mp-gun_n_1656078.html

July 7th, 2012, 6:15 pm

 

Ghufran said:

من حكايات الناس البسطاء
http://www.thevoiceofreason.de/pages-view-108.html

July 7th, 2012, 6:32 pm

 

Norman said:

Amir,
Your disgust with me only vindicates me, i am glad that we are on opposite sides, i am proud of that, i did not anything else from you.

July 7th, 2012, 6:36 pm

 

zoo said:

Ergogan set for another shock after he thought he could flirt better with Hollande than he did with Sarkozy

Hollande plans new law to punish denial of Armenian genocide

Saturday, 07 July 2012
French President Francois Hollande plans for a new law criminalizing denial of the Armenian genocide. (Reuters)
http://english.alarabiya.net/articles/2012/07/07/225086.html

French President Francois Hollande confirmed Saturday plans for a new law criminalizing denial of the Armenian genocide with representatives of the Armenian community, the Elysee Palace said.

July 7th, 2012, 6:37 pm

 

irritated said:

#179 Amir In Tel Aviv

An Israeli disgusted by massacre of Arabs?

I thought you were all vaccinated against that when you are born in a land your parents stole by committing hundred of massacres of Arabs.

July 7th, 2012, 6:41 pm

 

irritated said:

150. omen said:

the high for damascus today was 100 degrees fahrenheit. how many are without electricity?

Much less than in Beirut where cuts are around 6 hours a day. No one there lives without a generator… since 1990

July 7th, 2012, 6:51 pm

 

AIG said:

Norman,

You are most of your life in the US and you don’t understand a simple fact. If you have to force someone to be part of something, he is not really part of something. If Syrians have to be forced by Assad to be part of the “Arab nation”, there is no “Arab nation”, it is a figment of your imagination.

You cannot coerce people to believe in something or to feel part of something. You can only educate and convince them. It is Assad that has wrecked the “Arab nation” because he translated it to include authoritarian rule. And he has manipulated Syrians so that without the authoritarian aspect there is no nation but a bunch of tribes divided by sect and religion.

Is Egypt not an Arab country because the MB are in power? Are the Palestinians in Gaza not Arab because the MB rules there also? Arabism comes in many forms and the religious form is what the people seem to want now. The Christians in Syria better get used to the idea or leave now if they think it will become dangerous for them.

If anyone killed the idea of the Arab nation it is Assad, not the FSA or the Muslim Brotherhood.

July 7th, 2012, 6:55 pm

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Irritated,

For the one thousandth time: there’s nothing between the Arab-Jewish, and the inner-Arab struggles. It’s apples and pears.

I would be as disgusted, if Jews massacred fellow Jews over religion, politics, domination or whatever.
.

July 7th, 2012, 7:05 pm

 

irritated said:

#189 AIG

It was Israel’s greatest aim to kill the dream of a powerful Arab Nation. The trouble is that the divided Arab nation is transforming into Moslem nations who are less tolerant to Israel and more threatening once united.

Hurry up to undermine it…

July 7th, 2012, 7:06 pm

 

irritated said:

#190 Amir In Tel Aviv

I would be as disgusted, if Jews massacred fellow Jews over religion, politics, domination or whatever.

But you’ll be delighted when Israelis massacre Arabs…
Congratulation, great morals… No surprise for me.

July 7th, 2012, 7:09 pm

 

AIG said:

Irritated,

There is a difference between someone who fights his enemies and someone that murders his own family.

How many Israeli Arabs (20% of the population) has Israel killed in the last ten years? I don’t think that even one but I am sure it is less than 10. And Israeli Arabs constantly have peaceful protests and freedom of speech and nobody shoots them.

Assad on the other hand murders his own citizens, and you give him backing. You are actually asking him to do so!

Here is the list of casualties of Palestinians who are not Israeli citizens since Cast Lead:
http://old.btselem.org/statistics/english/casualties.asp?sD=19&sM=01&sY=2009&filterby=event&oferet_stat=after

In about 3 years, 300 Palestinians were killed by Israel, and these are NOT Israeli citizens and about 50% are confirmed militants. Compare that to the work of the butcher you support who is killing HIS OWN CITIZENS at 100 times the rate.

July 7th, 2012, 7:10 pm

 

omen said:

is this another brigadier general defecting?

July 7th, 2012, 7:15 pm

 

AIG said:

Irritated,

There is nothing to undermine. Accountable governments in Arab countries are great for Israel. There will not be peace but there will not be war. Arabs want jobs and education and war does not help with that.

And if the governments are not democratic and hostile to Israel, they will be very weak, just as Assad was weak because they will be sanctioned or ignored by the West. The MB in Egypt has millions of people to feed. They want loans from the IMF and investment from the West. Good luck getting them if they are hostile.

Of course, they could start a war. But if Assad the son never started a war, why would they? They know what the results would be.

July 7th, 2012, 7:15 pm

 

Tara said:

U.N. head outlines options for Syria mission
By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 3:40 PM EDT, Sat July 7, 2012
….
The U.N. mission’s role in Syria was based on the premise that there would be a cessation to the violence, and failing that, “a calibration of effort in response to the situation on the ground would be appropriate,” Ban writes.
Basically, the three options Ban puts on the table are: withdrawing the U.N. team, increasing its size or adding armed protection for them; or retooling the mission of the current team.
Ban elaborates the most on the idea to shift the strategy of the current U.N. team.

The team could retain its military observer capability and continue its fact-finding work, but with a limited scope in light of the violence in Syria, the report says.
In this scenario, the U.N. mission would move its personnel from the field back to Damascus, where it would focus on pushing forward the six-point plan to the Syrian government and the opposition.
“From a central hub in Damascus, the civilian component would continue liaison and dialogue with opposition and Government representatives in the provinces as security conditions allow,” Ban writes.

The other options — withdrawal or augmentation of the force — could have more negative consequences than good, the report concludes.
(…)
http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/07/world/meast/syria-unrest/index.html?section=cnn_latest

July 7th, 2012, 7:19 pm

 

omen said:

israelis send help to syrian refugees in jordan:

link

on twitter you see a lot of jewish americans championing a free syria.

let’s not judge a people by their despicable government.

July 7th, 2012, 7:31 pm

 

jna said:

179. Amir in Tel Aviv said: I’m disgusted by (educated) people who justify the Hama massacre.

Amir, for the record, are you in favor of Israel repatriating as citizens the families of all the 700,000 Palestinians who were expelled in 1947-49, and returning their property to them? If not, I find your disgust hard to relate to.

July 7th, 2012, 7:37 pm

 

Tara said:

I’d like the charismatic cousin to be the new Syrian president.  His credentials are impeccable. 
——
First, the regime that has been murdering, torturing, mutilating, gang-raping, dispossessing and ethnically cleansing its way toward self-preservation must first be persuaded into abandoning its capo di tutti capi, Bashar al-Assad. Next, it must be coaxed into negotiating with its hundreds of thousands of victims. Finally comes the easy part: the victims themselves must be convinced, on the strong merits of a piece of paper which even Russia and China have condescended to sign, that all prospects suddenly please and that yesterday’s sadists have become today’s partners in “dialog” and “reconciliation”. The rebel wielding a Kalashnikov in Idlib will know that Hillary Clinton’s authority resignation has set him free. The man stuffed into a suspended car tire and beaten about the face, arms and legs with an electrical cable at the Palestine Branch of Military Intelligence in Damascus will be able to embrace the mukhabarat agent wielding the cable.

Here is what is being implemented in Syria. The suburb of Douma has been laid to waste by artillery shelling and helicopter bombardment. According to the Syrian Network for Human Rights, 95 percent of Douma’s residents have fled, and the regime’s security forces and shabiha death squads have raided makeshift hospitals on al-Jalaa Street. Thirteen districts of Homs have been given similar treatment over the past month, including al-Houleh, a village with which you may already be familiar.

Meanwhile, the regime is suffering a serious run on generals. Manaf Tlass, a high-ranking commander in the elite Republican Guard, and a long-standing intimate of the Assad family, has just fled to Turkey in a calculated mutiny that was almost certainly coordinated by his charismatic cousin, Lieutenant Abdul Razaq Tlass…..

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/michaelweiss/100169439/the-bloodshed-continues-as-syria-awaits-implementation-of-an-impossible-peace-plan/

July 7th, 2012, 7:41 pm

 

Tara said:

Al-Assad as Michael Corleone

Let’s remember the Godfather analogy. In the Syrian example, Michel Aflaq, the man who caused most of the troubles in the Arab world, is the architect of this mafia state, its Mario Puzzo. Hafez al-Assad, with his collaborative strategies, his power of control and cruelty, corresponds to Vito Corleone. Maher al-Assad, having spun out of control, plays the role of Sonny Corleone. Asaf Shawkat, with the rumors about his association with Syria’s comfortable enemy Israel, and even rumors as to whether he is alive or not spreading, is none other that Carlo Rizzi. These analogies, which are to a degree debatable, fade in relation to one interesting comparison. That is Bashar al-Assad — the well-educated son of the family who previously neither got involved in the regime’s business all that much, nor has a military background; who was expected neither to get his hands as bloody as his father Hafez, nor, for that matter, to find himself in a position of power in place of his brother or the deceased Basel al-Assad — is without a doubt Michael Corleone. The only comparison we cannot be sure of in this scenario is whether Sergey Lavrov plays the role of Tom Hagen, the lawyer for the Corleone family.

The al-Assad family has executed every single massacre in the last 40 years consciously and with purpose. They knew exactly what they were doing 30 years ago when they were killing tens of thousands of people in Hama, and they know exactly what they are doing today in the killing of thousands of people. Just as the al-Assad regime remained silent on purpose as Israel carried out bombings on Syrian soil in 2007, they were acting consciously and calculatedly when shooting down an unarmed Turkish jet two weeks ago.

This is probably because the family’s “lawyer” gave two pieces of sound advice: First, you can only suppress the uprisings following the Chechen model. In other words, you must shed so much blood that the rebels drown in their own blood. Second, if things get really bad, you must scare them with the wrath of other regional actors by causing the bloodshed to spread in the region. Al-Assad has followed this advice….

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/al-assad-as-michael-corleone.aspx?pageID=449&nID=24836&NewsCatID=436
 

July 7th, 2012, 7:58 pm

 

Bruno said:

I noticed the user calling himself
Amir in Tel Aviv

BBC world news editor: Houla massacre coverage based on opposition propaganda.

stated the following links to an apparent supposed defection, a BBC reporter have stated the following those such videos and more.

(Datelined 16:23, June 7, Williams chose a personal blog to make a series of fairly frank statements explaining that there was no evidence whatsoever to identify either the Syrian Army or Alawite militias as the perpetrators of the May 25 massacre of 100 people.)

Goes on to state..

(By implication, Williams also suggests strongly that such allegations are the product of the propaganda department of the Sunni insurgents seeking to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.)

(“In the aftermath of the massacre at Houla last month, initial reports said some of the 49 children and 34 women killed had their throats cut. In Damascus, Western officials told me the subsequent investigation revealed none of those found dead had been killed in such a brutal manner. Moreover, while Syrian forces had shelled the area shortly before the massacre, the details of exactly who carried out the attacks, how and why were still unclear.”)

The YouTube propaganda

(“Given the difficulties of reporting inside Syria, video filed by the opposition on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube may provide some insight into the story on the ground. But stories are never black and white—often shades of grey. Those opposed to President Assad have an agenda. One senior Western official went as far as to describe their YouTube communications strategy as ‘brilliant’. But he also likened it to so-called ‘psy-ops’, brainwashing techniques used by the US and other military to convince people of things that may not necessarily be true.”)

(In reality, this was an example of opposition propaganda that was anything but “brilliant”. The photograph of dozens of shrouded corpses was actually taken by Marco di Lauro in Iraq on March 27, 2003 and was of white body bags containing skeletons found in a desert south of Baghdad.

Di Lauro commented, “What I am really astonished by is that a news organization like the BBC doesn’t check the sources and it’s willing to publish any picture sent it by anyone: activist, citizen journalist or whatever… Someone is using someone else’s picture for propaganda on purpose.”)

(The BBC again acted as a vehicle for such propaganda, despite knowing that the photo had been supplied by an “activist” and that it could not be independently verified.)

IF you want to read the rest here you go.
http://www.medialens.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=683:the-houla-massacre-part-2-shades-of-grey&catid=25:alerts-2012&Itemid=69

July 7th, 2012, 8:37 pm

 

Bruno said:

And joshua landis sounds you like have an Opposition agenda which is obvious but it doesn’t matter now does it? and why it doesn’t matter? because people are realizing the truth.

But since joshua landis was a former member of the elite organization the Council on Foreign Relations, explain this to me.

Why hasn’t America,Britain,Canada or the western puppet states of Europe backed or supported the protesters and opposition in Bahrain? why? what are the differences between Libyan protesters or the protesters in Bahrain?

Is it because it hosts the fifth fleet? i would say it is because of that, and the fact the regime in Bahrain is a Sunni Saudi Arabian Backed supported regime.

The same Saudi Arabia that is funding and even arming the Syrian Free Army in Syria funny how the lying Hillary Clinton blames on Russia, China for arming Assad and his military.

But what difference is there if your funding different Islamist Groups in Syria who would want to take over it?

Even as in This Syria comment poll blog admits, 64% of users who voted don’t believe a neither government would take over in Syria if Assad steps down or is killed which i doubt that would happen.

Correct me if am wrong joshua landis but if Syria is Russia’s Strategically play ground, how would your elite friends feel if America loses the Fifth fleet home base in Bahrain?

I guess the feeling would be the same wouldn’t it?
If the American elites, with the likes of CFR and other NGO organizations would leave Syria alone.

Perhaps Maybe then Bahrain would be left alone as well.

Don’t forget joshua landis chidlren as young 11 years olds are been arrested just for been with there parents who are protesting and calling for freedom and democracy

The way that America is ignoring the protesters in Bahrain and is siding with Saudi Arabia over them, just shows how hypocritically America is when it comes down choosing the next targets or enemies.

As in a chess game.

July 7th, 2012, 8:54 pm

 

Bruno said:

To the users who are going to be Thumbing me down, if you are just going to keep on Thumbing me down without a logically reason, you better either make a comment to state your claim on why i am so wrong.

And why are you as since you Thumbed down me are or is so right that your thumbing me down is justified.

If you want to debate it, then by all means, lets have a rational conversation. Please don’t show your hypocritically side or unless your on what i prefer to call, as Pro Rebel Thumb down users who don’t make a comment.

July 7th, 2012, 9:06 pm

 

omen said:

bruno, has the regime blamed the houla massacre on the rebels?

(crickets)

July 7th, 2012, 9:07 pm

 

Bruno said:

@omen
Did you read the link i posted above? there is no evidence that Assad or the shadowy Syrian Gangsters were behind, and why? the fact wasn’t houla occupied by the FSA?

If so why has the FSA dumped the bodies into ground before a formally investigation by either the UN or any other group could look at the bodies and see how they dead and see on which groups did the bullets came from.

The fact is Omen, Assad forces may have been around near Houla but they weren’t inside of it as because it was been occupied by the FSA.

The Free Syrian Army on the day after the massacre they claimed that it was Assad forces artillery shelling that killed the children, but once the picture of the dead children was leaked, it was a different story.

The rebels claimed it was Assad militia.

Don’t forget the UN report states.

(militia supporting Assad were probably responsible for the killings )

It doesn’t say they were responsible for the killings, because the UN doesn’t have the evidence so as usual they would just report whatever the mainstream news outlets or the Opposition tells them to.

Who was it that filmed and photographed the children? was it the militia of Assad? Nope it were the rebels.

But now when people or groups start on filming there own crimes whatever or not they are alive or dead, doesn’t that also show how guilty they are?

Since when did Activists who have Journalistic Permission,nor experience became mouthpiece for the western news media outlets? the same reports by the rebels that even the news outlets themselves cant verify.

July 7th, 2012, 9:21 pm

 

norman said:

OMEN,

Yes they stated that the rebels killed the Alawi families and the families of the member of the parliament,

Bruno,

During the primary of the Republican for president of the US, Perry of Texas said when asked about Syria, he said it is about Iran, if we bring down Syria and president Assad we will cause Iran a tremendous loss that will make Iran easy to control, it is all about Iran.

July 7th, 2012, 9:21 pm

 

ann said:

Khaddam nuclear waste disposal in syria …

Republic of Caution – Daily Standard – February 20, 2006

http://www.washingtoninstitute.org/policy-analysis/view/republic-of-caution

[…]

This approach, however, only hurt the Baath party. At a crowded restaurant in Hama, I witnessed peoples’ reactions to Syrian government TV news about Khaddam’s misdeeds. The report said that Khaddam had accepted German bribes to bury nuclear waste in the Syrian desert. The people at the restaurant shook their heads, saying, “Khaddam is the regime.” For them, the Baath party was confessing that it had endangered the health of the Syrian people in return for money. Khaddam’s defection has started a public discussion in Syria on the ills of the regime.

[…]

This approach, however, only hurt the Baath party. At a crowded restaurant in Hama, I witnessed peoples’ reactions to Syrian government TV news about Khaddam’s misdeeds. The report said that Khaddam had accepted German bribes to bury nuclear waste in the Syrian desert. The people at the restaurant shook their heads, saying, “Khaddam is the regime.” For them, the Baath party was confessing that it had endangered the health of the Syrian people in return for money. Khaddam’s defection has started a public discussion in Syria on the ills of the regime.

A Syrian’s View of the Khaddam Patronage Network

http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/L/Joshua.M.Landis-1/syriablog/2006/01/syrians-view-of-khaddam-patronage.htm

July 7th, 2012, 9:22 pm

 

omen said:

bruno, that didn’t answer my question.
norman, source?

July 7th, 2012, 9:24 pm

 

AIG said:

Bruno,

What is there to debate with you? You seem to think that because Americans and in fact everybody is hypocritical it is ok for Assad to shot peaceful protesters. The two rights make a wrong argument is an absurd one. Who cares what the Americans do or not in Bahrain? This is Syria Comment, not Bahrain Comment. Assad has killed over ten thousand of his OWN PEOPLE. Justify that, and maybe there can be a rational debate with you.

July 7th, 2012, 9:36 pm

 

AIG said:

Norman,

So because the US is against Iran Assad should stay in power? Countries have complex interests. Using what others do as an excuse to leave Assad in power is ridiculous. Assad had 10 years to reform and have real free elections. He choose not to do that. What is happening in Syria is 90% his fault.

July 7th, 2012, 9:40 pm

 

ann said:

A Blast From SCs Past 8)

Khaddam Claims Asad Will Fall Soon – Saturday, January 14, 2006

http://faculty-staff.ou.edu/L/Joshua.M.Landis-1/syriablog/2006/01/khaddam-claims-asad-will-fall-soon.htm

July 7th, 2012, 9:55 pm

 

Norman said:

AIG,

I don’t want Assad to stay in power, what i want is for the Syrian people to chose his successor, not a takeover by the militants, and yes election under international monitoring, is that too hard for you to accept.

July 7th, 2012, 10:00 pm

 

ann said:

China, Russia Rebuff U.S. Comments On Syria – Sun, 08/07/2012

http://leadership.ng/nga/articles/29169/2012/07/08/china_russia_rebuff_us_comments_syria.html

China and Russia have separately rebuffed accusations by Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, that they are hindering the resolution of the crisis in Syria.

Aljazeera reported that Liu Weiman, the Chinese foreign ministry spokesman, said Clinton’s comments, made at the “Friends of Syria” meeting in France on Friday, were “totally unacceptable”, adding that any attempt to “slander” his country was doomed to fail.

At the meeting, CIinton said the two countries should “pay a price” for helping Bashar al-Assad keep power in Damascus, remarks that were among Washington’s toughest yet in 16 months of revolt in Syria.

Liu said China’s efforts at resolving the crisis had won international support.

“On the Syria problem, China’s fair and constructive stance and its contributions toward diplomatic efforts have attained the wide understanding and support of relevant parties in the international community”, he said in a statement on the ministry’s website.

“Any words and deeds that slander China and sow discord between China and other countries will be in vain”.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 10:10 pm

 

AIG said:

Norman,

You wanted a “long war” and you got it. It is just between Syrians instead of with Israel. And you got this “great” result because for 10+ years you supported every stupid move that Assad did. It is easy to say you are for free elections after 15,000 have been murdered. The time to ask for that was when Assad was safely in power. Now, there is zero trust that Assad and the regime can deliver anything near freedom. Now you will reap what you have sowed. You will have to hope that the militants will be smarter than Assad.

There is only one hope for Syria, and that is that Assad loses. In the unlikely case he stays in power, Syria will be completely wrecked without any chance of rebuilding as the sanctions and the awful relations with Turkey will remain. Anyone that wants what is best for Syria understand that Assad has to go.

July 7th, 2012, 10:14 pm

 

ann said:

Feature: Syria’s prolonged crisis ups house prices, rental rates – July 08, 2012

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-07/08/c_123384069.htm

Now, as the crisis is dragging on with no solution seen in the foreseeable future and with the influx of a lot of Syrians from other provinces seeking safer places, house prices have risen out of the reach of many local people.

The influx of Syrians from restive areas to the capital Damascus has also soared rental prices, as the majority of the displaced belong to the middle class or even the poor class that are unable to own houses at the capital and have rather opted to rent houses.

Real estate brokers claim that the Damascenes have raised rental rates by triple and the displaced people have muddled through the unaffordable rental rates by lodging three or even four families at one flat.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 10:17 pm

 

ann said:

Syrian navy undertakes war games – 2012-07-08

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/world/2012-07/08/c_123384073.htm

DAMASCUS, July 7 (Xinhua) — Syria’s navy forces on Saturday carried out war games using live ammunition, as part of military maneuvers that will continue for the next few days with the participation of several types of the Syrian armed forces, the state-run SANA news agency said.

The naval war games have been carried out with high efficiency, said SANA, adding that the military maneuvers have come to test the combat readiness of the armed forces in a real war-like circumstances.

The state news agency said all targets were hit successfully, adding that navy gunboats and helicopters were used in the war games.

[…]

July 7th, 2012, 10:23 pm

 

Norman said:

AIG,

With or without Assad, a long term war with Israel will happen and will force the Jews to leave Palestine, Israel can never win a war that it will impose it’s will on the Arabs and as long as the Arabs do not accept Israel right to exist, Israel future is questionable.

Let me make it clear, That is not what i like but that what will happen to Israel if it does not think things through.

July 7th, 2012, 10:41 pm

 

Syrialover said:

# 212. Norman said: “I don’t want Assad to stay in power, what i want is for the Syrian people to chose his successor”

Well, SAY SO and stick with it.

I’m afraid many times in this forum you have come across as saying: Don’t be unfair, give Assad a chance. The west is rotten and untrustworthy. Syrians should stay with what they have.

I have faith that the Syrian people can work together and find a way forward without Assad. Don’t you?

July 7th, 2012, 11:26 pm

 

Son of Damascus said:

Bruno,

“If so why has the FSA dumped the bodies into ground before a formally investigation by either the UN or any other group could look at the bodies and see how they dead and see on which groups did the bullets came from.”

I would ask for a source for such a statement but even with a “source” to back up your unsubstantiated claim it would be false.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/sets/72157630061921365/

Pictures of the UN monitors documenting the fallen victims of the Houla massacre, and subsequent mass funeral that was held afterwards under the watchful eye of the UN monitors. The independence flag that represents the Syrian opposition can be seen in the background of many pictures held by the residents of Houla.

July 7th, 2012, 11:43 pm

 

Halabi said:

“Mustafa Tlas may not be very happy with neither the regime,nor his son (manaf), his statement to France 24 is available online.”

Where is this statement? Why is there no link? I see some pro-Assad propaganda sites attribution the report to France 2.

http://tinyurl.com/85q7883

It’s an interesting article.
كما رد طلاس على لما الأتاسي التي كانت ضيفة في اللقاء حين تدخلت وقالت كل من هو مع النظام سوف يحاسب بالقول: “روحي رضعي ولادك أحسن من أكل الهوا هاد”

When people depend on garbage for news it shows in their analysis. There will always be intellectually dishonest people, but in a free Syria we can finally expose the lies and have the space to explore the truth, rather than blame everything on fat princes in the Gulf or conspiracies in Israel and the west. Exposing the lies and forcing people to be accountable are what the stubborn, ignorant supporters of the genocidal tyrant fear the most. That, along with losing the right to loot the country.

July 7th, 2012, 11:52 pm

 

Observer said:

TARA I disagree about the Corleone family analogy. Michael Corleone would have been Basel as he is ruthless calculating and takes every thing personally. He was not meant to be the head of the family but he stepped up to it after the Turk tried to kill his father.

Bashar is Fredo, stupid and weak and a prop up. The problem is that Basel died and he was forced to become the head but he is not of the Michael Corleone caliber he is Fredo the stupid mumbling fumbling womanizing fool.

As for the fact that Syrian cities do not have a phone book it seems to have stuck in someone’s throat and like a chard of wood under the skin is keeping people awake. The problem is that the story is an accurate symbol of the failed state that these people claim is worth defending.

Now for ZOO, you do not seem to get it. When I challenge the idea of keeping Syria as a single entity and wonder whether the peoples of Syria would be better separating you keep accusing me of wanting the destruction of the country. Far from it I want the people to live together in peace in the region but in separate political entities as they clearly and without a doubt have NOT coalesced around the idea of either Syrian or Arab nationalism. Witness the Kurds walking out in the opposition meeting and their demand to drop the word Arab from the SAR. Watch how the circassians are returning to the Caucase and watch how Armenians are leaving for the US. Heck you even mention how Hollande is going to revisit the Armenian genocide question in France. Well, are the Armenians in Syria Syrians or are they Armenians and if they are first Armenians then wake up and smell the roses there is NO SUCH THING AS A SYRIAN NATIONAL IDENTITY.

Watch how the elephant in the room of pure sectarian fighting in Syria is not discussed and how the loyal troops from one sect write on the walls Alassad or we Burn Albalad. Is this not pure sectarian NON SYRIAN NON ARAB return to clan identity?

If living in Syria means that one sect is going to oppress and suppress and enslave others and hold some hostage to its brutality then NO there is no need for this artificial entity created by Sykes-Picot to survive just as Lebanon does not deserve to survive and least of all KSA and Jordan and Iraq and Turkey and Sudan and Algeria and Morocco. Can’t you understand that the people due to this incredibly failed regime have stopped thinking of their country as theirs? After all it is called Souria Alassad just the mirror image of the Wahabi State of KSA, named after a person. These are not COUNTRIES these are FAMILIES with flags and thugs to keep them in place.

July 7th, 2012, 11:54 pm

 

Syrialover said:

Dear BRUNO,

I don’t believe Joshua Landis has an “opposition agenda”. He makes efforts to be balanced, and I respect this even though I have not always agreed when I sometimes felt he showed a tolerant stance on the Assad regime over the years. His heart is with Syria and its people and he has always been open to exploring all sides.

The Bahrain story is terrible, I agree, but nowhere near as bad as Syria’s and it’s being resolved in a different way under pressure from outside.

If people vote you down, it’s probably because they think you are trying to use the Syrian forum to vent your exasperation against the Bahraini leadership while EXCUSING the Syrian leadership and saying things against the Syrian opposition that many of us have seen plenty of strong evidence to contradict.

You don’t make sense when you say, in accusing the Syrian oppoition of massacres, “Who was it that filmed and photographed the children? was it the militia of Assad? Nope it were the rebel”

And you come across as a determined disliker and accuser of the west and an apologist for Russia and Iran.

Fair enough, if that’s your world. But it’s hard to debate you if that’s the case.

July 8th, 2012, 12:01 am

 

Son of Damascus said:

Irritated,

“If the FSA keep repeating that it controls 70% of the country, where are then the massive demonstrations in these areas?
Or maybe the FSA does not allow them? or maybe it is 7%… and the FSA armed men are the only people left in these areas.”

What no mention of major defections this week?

As for the protests here is a Google interactive map with over 582 protests across Syria documented in video from this past Friday 6th of July:

https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=204850002589583490946.0004c41c5709995dbcc25&msa=0&ll=34.802075,38.996815&spn=5.384153,9.876709

As well a Flickr photo collection of 49 different sets of nearly 1000 pictures (990 to be precise) from all over Syria this past Friday:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/collections/72157630468483064/

July 8th, 2012, 12:05 am

 

Bruno said:

@AIG

(What is there to debate with you? You seem to think that because Americans and in fact everybody is hypocritical it is ok for Assad to shot peaceful protesters. The two rights make a wrong argument is an absurd one. Who cares what the Americans do or not in Bahrain? This is Syria Comment, not Bahrain Comment. Assad has killed over ten thousand of his OWN PEOPLE. Justify that, and maybe there can be a rational debate with you.)

(it is ok for Assad to shot peaceful protesters. The two rights make a wrong argument is an absurd one. )

First off about the shooting at these so called protesters tell me who started it first? was it Assad? Nope, from the videos that i have seen on YouTube as always.

The shooters reminded me of the blackwater mercenaries, its no wonder why they changed there name to Xe.

The blackwater mercenaries in Iraq had no respect towards the civilians, the same shooting of the protesters in Syria also reminded me of the same shooting in Libya.

Who you think you are trying to pull here eh? i have been following the arab spring since last year.

How Ironic that these unmarked, unidentified shooters have ended in been in just Syria,Libya why haven’t these unidentified shooters turned up in Yemen huh? howcome? surely you could explain.

And once again my comments get thumbed down not surprised.

July 8th, 2012, 12:07 am

 

AIG said:

Norman,

For 60+ years people like you have expressed delusional views about Israel in order to support regimes that have made the Arab situation worse. You keep promising wars but so far, the only thing you have delivered is a Syrian civil war. Let’s say that your predictions are much less than credible.

You backed Assad for ten years. Are you happy with the result? Do you regret you supported the person that brought Syria to this awful situation?

July 8th, 2012, 12:12 am

 

Bruno said:

@Son of Damascus
Who are you trying to pull off here? Son of Damascus your Flickr photo collection is showing a different country flag, thats not a Syrian Flag.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521069260/in/set-72157630464624938

Thats not an Syrian Flag^

And also Son of Damascus why are the protest signs in Pure written English?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521069904/in/set-72157630464624938

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521060752/in/set-72157630464601734

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521312352/in/set-72157630465158970

^STOPPING Using CHILDREN as a POLITICAL MESSAGE, Maybe The RUSSIANS Should DO something like that to American Children i wonder how you CFR Supporters would all feel then EH?

(As well a Flickr photo collection of 49 different sets of nearly 1000 pictures (990 to be precise) from all over Syria this past Friday:)

Yeah trying to us children to show that the Free Syrian army have any support eh?

Care to explain this English sign?
http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521373192/in/set-72157630465279140
You would think Syrians would write that English that well?

July 8th, 2012, 12:18 am

 

AIG said:

Bruno,

Of course it was Assad that started shooting first at protesters. For a long while the protesting was completely peaceful until people could no longer stand the cruel killings. And do not forget that the unrest started when Assad tortured and killed children that sprayed graffiti.

July 8th, 2012, 12:19 am

 

Bruno said:

@Syrialover
(I don’t believe Joshua Landis has an “opposition agenda”. He makes efforts to be balanced, and I respect this even though I have not always agreed when I sometimes felt he showed a tolerant stance on the Assad regime over the years. His heart is with Syria and its people and he has always been open to exploring all sides.)

Haven’t i stated that he is a member to the CFR? the same globalists that are pushing the American century project in the middle east.

(while EXCUSING the Syrian leadership and saying things against the Syrian opposition that many of us have seen plenty of strong evidence to contradict.)

Yeah right YouTube as a credible evidence right?

You don’t make sense when you say, in accusing the Syrian oppoition of massacres, “Who was it that filmed and photographed the children? was it the militia of Assad? Nope it were the rebel”

(And you come across as a determined disliker and accuser of the west and an apologist for Russia and Iran. )

And you and other users on here sounds like your both apologists for the two undemocratic countries of Saudi Arabia and Qatar that are not only funding the Free Syrian Army but are also supplying them with weapons.

And you also as if your an apologist for the Council on Foreign Relations, seeing how you commented on me that i am an apologist for Russia and Iran.

I guess you wouldn’t mind the new Syria been controlled by the proxy of America, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

July 8th, 2012, 12:26 am

 

Son of Damascus said:

Bruno,

“Who are you trying to pull off here? Son of Damascus your Flickr photo collection is showing a different country flag, thats not a Syrian Flag.”

That photo is of the Kurdish flag flown by many Syrian kurds in tandem with the independence flag such as in this picture taken in al-Qamishli Hassakeh:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chroniclesyrianuprising/7521276056/in/set-72157630465082712

As for the English posters I don’t see the problem with it? I am Syrian and here I am writing in English (and I can write in three other languages), are you somehow trying to claim that the pictures are not from Syria or that Syrians can’t possibly speak and write in another language?

Btw care to comment on my earlier comment addressed to you where you claim falsely that the FSA dumped the bodies and did not allow the UN to document them? Or are you going to conveniently side step that because you can’t back up your callous claims?

July 8th, 2012, 12:35 am

 

Bruno said:

@AIG
(Of course it was Assad that started shooting first at protesters. For a long while the protesting was completely peaceful until people could no longer stand the cruel killings. And do not forget that the unrest started when Assad tortured and killed children that sprayed graffiti.)

First were and are you in Syria? if it was Assad that started shooting first at protesters, isnt that the same lie that was said about gaddafi? that it was gaddafi forces that started shooting at the peaceful protesters?

eventually right after these little protests you remember the rebels did? if you have forgotten.
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-03-21/libyan-rebel-council-sets-up-oil-company-to-replace-qaddafi-s.html

And there’s
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12875810
http://21stcenturywire.com/2011/03/29/wow-that-was-fast-libyan-rebels-have-already-established-new-central-bank-of-libya/

So what American Interests or more rather “strategic interest” are threatened in Syria? care to answer that?

Funny how you Rebel supporters have insulted me as an apologist for Russia and Iran.

That was expected.

July 8th, 2012, 12:37 am

 

Son of Damascus said:

“Funny how you Rebel supporters have insulted me as an apologist for Russia and Iran.

That was expected.”

While you call anyone that does not agree with your line of simplistic thinking as agents of CFR.

Hypocrisy: The practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behaviour does not conform

July 8th, 2012, 12:45 am

 

Syrialover said:

Observer,

I almost always strongly agree with everything you say. But this vision of Syrians separating out is not to be wished for a country in the 21st century.

The wish must be for political and social development and, above all, a secure and viable economic entity.

People resort to clan and sectarian identity when they feel there is no way to participate and get what they want, or they feel threatened. At the moment, it’s surprising and reassuring that it isn’t stronger across Syria.

(And I can’t take the Kurds as an example of anything – they should sort things out among themselves before they start demanding a seat any table!)

A large proportion of the world would love to go back and re-draw the borders to the 19th and 20th centuries – in Europe, Africa, South America, Asia. But you have to work with what you have and not keep drawing on and operating with the past.

And Syrians have a common language, religion, state systems, and pride in their country and heritage. And a decency and tolerance that the Iraqis, Palestinians and Armenians can testify to. And which many western visitors remark on as a contrast to other places they have been.

There is a lot to pull together and build a future on.

Incredibly, Rwanda is now becoming a model for a number of things to do with social development and the economy. Things ARE possible.

July 8th, 2012, 12:45 am

 

Halabi said:

How could the wonderful people of Kafranbel come up with witty banners in perfect English, when even the brilliant doctors who have been living in the U.S. for decades can barely string together a few sentences in this most difficult of languages? It could be that there are smart Syrians who understand how to convey a message to the world, but the pro-Assad crowd see that as an oxymoron because all the Syrians they know are ignorant racists.

July 8th, 2012, 12:52 am

 

Syrialover said:

Bruno said: “I guess you wouldn’t mind the new Syria been controlled by the proxy of America, Israel and Saudi Arabia.”

I doubt if it will be.

But it sure beats being controlled by Russia and Iran!!!!!

And read up on the so-called “agenda” of the CFR – you might think it’s a raging success, but many see it as failing.

But maybe you find a wild conspiracy theory more fun to furiously gnaw on in the corner.

July 8th, 2012, 12:53 am

 

Bruno said:

@Son of Damascus

(That was expected.”

While you call anyone that does not agree with your line of simplistic thinking as agents of CFR.

Hypocrisy: The practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behaviour does not conform)

Well its pretty clear on here on Syria comment you will be thumbed up if and as if you agree with the Rebel/Terrorist agenda. And you will be thumbed down if you or anyone else doesn’t agree along with this how you folks operate.

(While you call anyone that does not agree with your line of simplistic thinking as agents of CFR.)

Rather then agents of the CFR your more of Supporters then agents. Its pretty clear what you rebel supporters have been trying to do and thats to swing in support for the rebel side.

CNN has been reported to have been declining in ratings, CNN has had the lowest ratings since 1991. Hm i wonder maybe its due to the propaganda on Syria?

July 8th, 2012, 12:56 am

 

ann said:

‘Washington backed jihadist [Terrorists] elements in Kosovo, now in Syria’ – 08 July, 2012

http://www.rt.com/news/conflict-coverage-jatras-kosovo-659/

[…]

James Jatras, the director of the American Council on Kosovo, believes the similarities between the two conflicts run deep.

“There are similarities on three crucial levels when we look at Syria,” Jatras told RT. “One has to do with the international system, the rule of law, the role of the Security Council. Another has to do with the status of sovereign states, and how you treat a sovereign state that has an insurgency within its borders.”

The third level involves taking a complex situation involving atrocities and violence committed on both sides of the conflict, and attributing them only to one side.

“What you do is come up with a concept, and you fit the facts into the concept. You don’t take a step back in good faith, look at what’s really going on, look at the suffering of people on both sides,” Jatras noted.

Jatras believes that the West has essentially been pouring gasoline on a smoldering fire, using words like “genocide,” and only wants victory for one side and utter destruction for the other.

He also took note of the similar fates of the Christian population in both the Kosovo and the Syrian conflict.

“Why is it that in the name of fighting terrorism and promoting democracy, the United States always seems to find itself on the side of jihadist elements engaging in terrorism with predictable results for the Christian population, as we saw in Kosovo when half of the Orthodox Serb population had to flee the province, and thousands of them were killed by the ‘liberators,’ – the Kosovo Liberation Army?”

[…]

July 8th, 2012, 12:57 am

 

Bruno said:

@Syrialover

(But it sure beats being controlled by Russia and Iran!!!!!)

Thanks for showing what kind of hypocrite you are may i also add the same Brutal regime in Bahrain is been backed and supported by yours truly, Saudi Arabia.

Since the way you replied that way your a not a real Syrian. But a Syrian who wants to see his country in Chaos as in Libya is already in Chaos.

Only 1 Million people voted, while the rest of Libya was in chaos still parts of libya people don’t have the basics. No power or clean water in most parts of Liby.

July 8th, 2012, 1:03 am

 

Bruno said:

@ann
Thanks for the link but since most commentators here are anti Russians which is obvious on there paying salary agenda part, they wont like that link if thats case heres a better source.

Seeing how CNN,ABC,CBC and all other western news outlets have became a mouthpiece propaganda for the Sryian rebels.

Arms training or political inspiration: Why are Syrian rebels in Kosovo?

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/world-view/arms-training-or-political-inspiration-why-are-syrian-rebels-in-kosovo/article4354139/

The main reason why Sryian rebels were in Kosovo is because of one solo based reason.

To learn terror tactics from the best and professionally killers and there known only as the Snake.

The Kosovo Liberation Army.

Funny how America removed them as a terrorist group no?
http://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/BIS111A.html

July 8th, 2012, 1:10 am

 

mjabali said:

Moderator said:

” There are Sunnis that use the Qaf as well. I have warned you several times from making over the top accusations and belittling any religion. The issue was not the words Qaf but the insults against Sunnis that came after. You were placed on moderation for one week previously for insulting me directly.

SC Moderator”

Mr. Moderator you are playing a dirty game with me.

Dirty because you are hiding my comments and accusing me with things that you have no right or position to talk about.

Mr. Moderator: my comment was in response to what Shami wrote. You took Shami’s comment as soon I wrote my response. For the record: Shami used the same insults before and you let him slide with it. How come you do not give him a “Warning” or say to him what you just wrote to me about me making fun of other religions. What I said is the truth mr. Moderator, and if you are open to discuss the letter Qaf I am around any day and any time to support what I said. Why don;t you put it up and let us discuss it sentence by sentence.

You can not change what I write. You want to discuss it I am available, but you can not take my words out. You have been eating my words for a while, while patronizing me as if you are the biggest authority in the world about Syria. Let us discuss matters without you warning me. Are you up for this?

You signaled me out from the moment you became a moderator. You took away many of my comments. You have done this time after time. You accused me and critiqued my writings without giving me a chance to reply. Is this real moderation?

I am free to say whatever I want. Others on this board use worst language than mine and they are let go. I know what I say is kind of annoying because it is the truth.

Stop hiding my comments and affecting the discourse on this great blog.

You are a problem more than a problem solver.

As for insulting you, all I said was the word Tozz after you banned me from writing. Is there an insult more than shutting someone up and never letting them speak their mind?

So you ban me for arguing with you, is that fair?

July 8th, 2012, 1:21 am

 

Syrialover said:

Bruno,

You are gnawing so enthusiastically and excitedly on those dusty dry conspiracy theory bones you will damage your teeth.

And you’ve been getting far more thoughtful responses than you deserve.

July 8th, 2012, 1:22 am

 

mjabali said:

I have spoken about how Sunnis in Syria make fun of the way the Alawite speak and especially the way the Alawite pronounce the letter Qaf.

The moderator said that my argument is invalid because there are some Sunnis who also pronounce the letter “Qaf.” To that I say: the number of the Sunnis who pronounce the “Qaf” are very minimal. Also these Sunnis were in areas that were Alawi not too long ago. Read Ibn Battuta and see where the Alawis used to live.

Also here is a list for you how the Sunnis in Syria pronounce the letter Qaf:

1- Lattakia where I grew up with the Sunnis, I have never seen any one of them utter the letter Qaf. Instead they substitute in with Hamza.

2- The Sunnis of Jableh and Tartus also pronounce the letter Qaf as a Hamza.

3- The Sunnis of Alleppo pronounce the letter Qaf as a Hamza

3- The Sunnis of Damascus pronounce the letter Qaf as a Hamza.

5- The Sunnis of the East pronounce the letter Qaf like the letter G, as in Game.

All of these Sunnis make fun of the Alawi way of pronouncing the letter Qaf.

I grew up in Syria and know how people look down at the Alawis and the way the pronounce the letter Qaf.

Remember what I said: The Sunnis that pronounce the letter Qaf like the Alawis are in the countryside.

July 8th, 2012, 1:36 am

 

Bruno said:

@Syrialover

(You are gnawing so enthusiastically and excitedly on those dusty dry conspiracy theory bones you will damage your teeth. )

I am not surprised your calling it a dusty dry conspiracy theory the fact is you cant handle the truth apperently and thus you have ran out of rational comments or something to back up your own agreement.

So what you did there was an accusation and insult by calling me a conspiracy theorist.

Btw that link i posted was a Canadian news link.

July 8th, 2012, 2:00 am

 

Bruno said:

Nice to see that supporters Council on Foreign Relations arent interested in the fact, and like that Lebanese official had stated.

Manaf Tlas Defection had and has made no impacts on the ground, the western mainstream since 12 months and even when those 20 generals have had defected they claimed that Assad was at the end.

But yet with the more defections that we westerns have seen on the news it didn’t that way.

Even the news anchors had troubles repeating the same lie over and over again.

As i stand corrected at my above comment i already got a thumbs down ^

July 8th, 2012, 2:05 am

 

ann said:

Clinton Declare WAR on SYRIA!

Clinton: Time is running out on Syria – 15h 30m ago

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton says time’s running out on Syrian peace hopes and warns that the Syrian state could collapse.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/story/2012-07-08/hillary-clinton-syria/56089012/1

She says there’s “still a chance to save the Syrian state from a catastrophic assault that would be very dangerous not only to Syria, but to the region.”

[…]

July 8th, 2012, 2:10 am

 

Halabi said:

As long as you are being honest Mjabali, how do Christians in Syria’s larger cities pronounce Qaf? Do they also ridicule Alawites? We both know the answer, but only one of us knows for sure why the rage is directed solely at Syrian Sunnis, who you consider, if I remember your hateful slurs correctly, to be
رواسب العثمانية ولا يعرفون اصلهم من فصلهم

The appropriate response to racist rhetoric is to call it out, not retaliate by hurling racist epithets. But that’s something I don’t expect the pro-Assad side to understand. Because while they whine about freedom of speech on a useless online forum, they applaud their criminal police state for slaughtering thousands of Syrians for daring to voice their opinion.

July 8th, 2012, 2:15 am

 

Ghufran said:

قامت قناة فرانس 2 صباح اليوم باجراء اتصال هاتفي مع العماد مصطفى طلاس بوجود عميد الصحافة الفرنسية مالبرونو والمذيع
جيرارد دوا
يسال مالبرونو:التقيتك على هامش معرض فيالوفر من شهرين وقلت لي في دردشة ان الرئيس بشار الاسد هو ابني فقطع العماد
حديثه وقال نعم قلت هذا وقلت ايضا ان هذه دردشة وليست مقابلة لان الكل يعلم ان امم الارض اتصلت بي لاعلن موقف معارض ورفضت
وعندما ساله المذيع عن ابنه قاطعه بالرد: قالوا ان ابني وصل الى فرنسا لكنه لم يتصل بي
فساله مالبرونو: هل العد التنازلي لنهاية الجيش السوري بدا؟
وهنا رد العماد طلاس : جورج هل انت غبي؟ انت تتكلم عن جيش اسس له منذ خمسين عاما وليس فرقة كشافة تنهار بخروج ابني وغيره
فعاد المذيع وساله: هل انت مع الدكتور بشار الاسد؟
فجاوبه:بانه رئيس جمهورية البلد التي احمل جوازها ولا شان لذلك ان كنت موالي ام لا
ثم طلب منه جورج مقابله فقال له: لا وقت لدي صديقي لرفع معنوياتك المنهارة وتوقعاتك منذ سنه بسقوط النظام
فرد جورج :سيدي الم تتعلم اللباقه من الفرنسيين في الحديث وانت مقيم عندنا منذ وقت طويل؟ فقال ساخرا:الان انت تستعرض على الهواء واللباقة ليست لك انما للنساء الا اذا كنت تعد نفسك امراة!!
I do not know why France 2 did not mention this interview,I understand the skepticism of some,but Tlas may have actually said what he said then announced that his family will come out with a press release soon. My own opinion is that the Tlas family is at least uncomfortable with Bashar

July 8th, 2012, 2:48 am

 

mjabali said:

Mr. Halabi:

City people in Syria make fun of the way the Alawite speak. I lived this myself.

Most people who consider themselves city folks do pronounce the Qaf as a Hamza. Pronouncing the Qaf as a Hmaza became the norm that people looked for. Pronouncing the Qaf the way the Alawi do is considered as speaking the language of the poor. The letter Qaf is discriminated against across the board in Syria. Alawis who lived and grew up in cities pronounce it like a hamza too. Bashar al-Assad pronounce it as a Hamza.

AS for the phrase: رواسب العثمانية لايعرفون اصلهم من فصلهم, this is an accurate description because of the following:

During the Ottoman long long days many people from all over the known world at that moment ended up in Syria. These people intermarried with each other and with the locals creating a mix of people that is hard to trace where they really came from. The Sunnis of the Syrian cities are the result of almost a thousand years of this practice. This is a fact. It is not true that Syrian city people of today are the children of those who lived in those cities 1400 years ago except for the Christians. They were there for a long time.

The Sunnis of the Syrian cities of today are the creation of the Ottomans. The Ottomans affected the composition of the country side also. Remember how many invasions came to Syria in the last 1000 years. This is a fact.

I agree with you about to call out bad remarks. But, to tell you the truth: this heated argument is the only way that Syrians really speak what is on their minds.

True feelings should come out so maybe we could write a real history instead of the fake one they taught us. The clash of ideas is not bad at any time. In Syria we learned to shove all of our problems under the rug and pretend things are great.

July 8th, 2012, 2:51 am

 

Ghufran said:

The regime loyalists are talking about recent “victories” in Homs ,Idleb and Reef Dimashq,
Shiqfeh of the MB predicted that Ramadan will be the month when the regime fell,an FSA spokesman said that 70% of Syria is under the FSA rule,etc. much of what is being said about Syria is simple propaganda launched by both pro and anti regime sources.
اوساط المعارضة تعلن أن “إعطاء دور للناشط الحمصي خالد ابو صلاح في مؤتمري القاهرة وباريس سيتسبب بنزاع آخر بين المعارضين، رغم إحترامنا لأبو صلاح ودوره في نصرة الشعب السوري إلا أنه فلسطيني، فهل اجدبت ارض السوريين ليتزعم الحراك الثوري مندوب الجزيرة في حمص”، متابعة “أخطأ ابو صلاح عندما قال أنه عائد إلى سورية لتشكيل المجالس الداخلية الخاصة، فالكلام عن تشكيل مجالس للثوار يجب ان يتفوه به كادر سوري معارض، وليس ابو صلاح، لأن النظام ينتظرنا عند اول مفترق، وما قاله الثائر الفلسطيني السوري، ستعمل ابواق النظام الإعلامية على الإستفادة منه لأقصى درجة عبر الإشارة إلى السوريين أن المعارضة لا تملك على جداولها شخصية وطنية لتزعم الشارع فعملت على إستيراد أبو صلاح”.
The west is waiting on a US decision on how to proceed with Syria,that decision is unlikely to come before November ,and may be January.

July 8th, 2012, 3:00 am

 

Aldendeshe said:

She says there’s “still a chance to save the Syrian state from a catastrophic assault that would be very dangerous not only to Syria, but to the region.”

__________________________________________________________________

I love Lucy. Lets do it. I love to see the Middle East region in catastrophic dangerous condition.

July 8th, 2012, 3:12 am

 

Syrian Nationalist Party said:

International Bankers looking for way out to hide the coming collapse. Attacking Iran, will mean buying 10 more years. You see, they bought a pak of 10 years on Desert Storm war 1990, then they collapsed in 2000. Bought another pak of 10 years blowing the towers and stealing Nova Scotia world gold reserve volt, then Iraq war. Now, 10 years later, they are few months, if not weeks from bellying up and the only game they know how to play well, is getting another pak of 10 years on new Middle East war. Now Iran better be smart and play the game right, don’t attack U.S. bases and assets, don’t make Americans upset at you, make’em very happy under the table so their missiles will miss the targets and lie about it to Israel, just attack the Bedouin expensive projects. So America can step in and re-build ( fleece all the cash they are sitting on like they did Iraq and Kuwait, Libya etc. ) America need JOBS and rebuilding Arabia is the best way to employ American on exclusive obscenely high priced contracts. One more note to Iran, don’t be shy about blowing up the Bedouins oil installations and fields. They need these expensive rebuilding contracts badly, so as Halliburton and Coots. Raising oil prices helps the Ra KA Phere Banks too, he will get 2-3 times more Dollars back to bail his butt out, makes the Union oil value much higher ( I mean the American Union, you know Mexico-Canada-USA) oil reserves value will sky rocket triple- quadruple and that will shore up the Dollar baby. Even on Retail Sales, since RA-KA owns most of XYZ oil companies his prophets will quadruple, by having average Joe pay up at the pump higher prices. So Iran Play smart and hit those places that America, not Russia or China can secure the juicy contracts please.

July 8th, 2012, 3:44 am

 

Halabi said:

I knew there was a reason why I defend you Mjabali, and I think there is definitely value in discussing history. You will find that we agree on many topics and share a fierce opposition to religious zealots who plague our region. You may even accept that Assad’s Syria is a police state that oppresses everyone and has been murdering our families, friends and neighbors for decades.

If this knowledge doesn’t trump every other calculation, if you are willing to accept the Assad regime–which has no chance of ever security and rebuilding the country–then there are some other factors motivating that decision. I want freedom, dignity, rule of law, democracy, I want a better country. Demands that all Syrians should share, regardless of how many centuries they’ve lived in these lands.

My family is said to have come from Iraq in 1052 A.D., and there were definitely other people living in Aleppo at the time so I guess it makes me less Syrian. I don’t know how long we were Iraqis, but I’m pretty sure we came from Ethiopia through Yemen some 50,000 years ago. I’m from a very prominent family and we are related to everyone, even Bashar Al Assad.

July 8th, 2012, 3:55 am

 

ann said:

Russian Defense Ministry official said downed Turkish aircraft violated Syrian airspace on an intelligence mission for the NATO.

http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/157603#.T_oasvXCki0

[…]

In an interview with Russia Today, Korotchenko said that the Syrian defenses showed high skills in downing the aircraft and that the country’s air defenses have the ability to confront any threat.

He noted the importance of the incident claiming that it will cause the West to reconsider undertaking aerial operations against Syria in the future, as it is likely to suffer significant loses.

Korotchenko said that Russia has documented information on the infiltration of the aircraft, saying that it was destroyed legally as it was within the Syrian airspace.

He said that the aircraft was conducting espionage and photo reconnaissance of important sites, and that the Turks did not anticipate that the Syrian anti-air defenses would be able to down thise aircraft due to its high maneuverability and low altitude, expecting it to return safely to base after finishing the mission mission.

Korotchenko went on to assert that Turkish intelligence sought to obtain information about Syria’s anti-air defenses for the benefit of NATO, and that the efficiency of these defenses constitutes a blow to the Turkish air forces.

[…]

July 8th, 2012, 4:43 am

 

Amjad said:

“You would think Syrians would write that English that well?”

Your chauvinistic attitude is disgusting.

Saw Bernard-Levy on the BBC yesterday. God bless him, Syrians are finding out who our true friends are. A person’s stance on the Syrian revolution has become the moral question of our age, just as people’s attitudes towards Fascism and Communism was in the past. Pro-Nazis and Communist apologizers spent the rest of their miserable lives trying to apologize for their stance, and so it will be with the pro-junta propagandists.

If it was within Bashar’s means to subdue the revolution, he would have managed to do so months ago. He has every advantage a tin pot dictator could have dreamed of, including UN veto cover, and yet he STILL cant even impose his will on a place like Baba Amr. He spends his time obsessing over Al-Jazeera as much as certain posters obsess over how many thumbs down they get. Pathetic.

July 8th, 2012, 4:45 am

 

Amjad said:

“Manaf Tlas Defection had and has made no impacts on the ground, the western mainstream since 12 months and even when those 20 generals have had defected they claimed that Assad was at the end.”

You claim to be a Westener, and yet cant even put together a properly structured sentence? This is how it should read

“Manaf Tlas’ defection has had no impact on the ground, despite claims by the MSM for the past 12 months that Assad was at his end, especially when 20 generals defected.”

Some people’s writing sounds more like how an Iranian would write English. Economics is for donkeys, didn’t you all hear the holy fatwa?

July 8th, 2012, 4:50 am

 

Syrialover said:

Armed and masked fighter being greeted warmly in Aleppo

http://projects.nytimes.com/watching-syrias-war?smid=fb-nytimes

This is on that excellent site “Watching Syria’s War” in the NY Times which tracks new video information and attempts to put it in context.

It has something fresh almost every day.

July 8th, 2012, 6:47 am

 

ann said:

Syrian military conducts exercises in apparent warning to West not to intervene – July 8, 2012

Read more: http://www.theprovince.com/news/Syrian+military+begins+largescale+military+exercises+show+force/6901325/story.html#ixzz205aEkegE

DAMASCUS, Syria – Syria’s military began large-scale exercises simulating defence against outside “aggression,” the state-run news agency said Sunday — an apparent warning to other countries not to intervene in the country’s crisis.

The exercise began Saturday with naval forces in a scenario where they repelled an attack from the sea, and will include air and ground forces over the next few days, SANA agency said. State TV broadcast footage of missiles being fired from launch vehicles and warships.

[…]

July 8th, 2012, 7:38 am

 

ann said:

Syria: More Casualties as more Clashes have been reporting – 8/07/2012

http://www.dp-news.com/en/detail.aspx?articleid=125629

SYRIA- Syria`s official news agency SANA reports on Sunday “Syrian authorities had thwarted an infiltration attempt by an armed terrorist group that wanted to cross over from Lebanon into Syria near al-Qseir city in Homs countryside.”

SANA quoted a source in Homs Province telling that “the clash resulted in the killing and injury of a number of terrorists in addition to destroying two cars equipped with machinegun. Two members of the law-enforcement forces were wounded.”

Syrian competent authorities also “Clashed and thwarted an infiltration attempt by an armed terrorist group” which sought to cross over from Turkey into Syria through Bab al-Hawa, SANA reported.

[…]

July 8th, 2012, 7:50 am

 

IHTP said:

Hello everyone!

Before saying anything, I’d like to thank Joshua Landis for running this blog and also of course to all others who’ve shared their views and expertise via this platform. It has been an indispensable contributor in trying to get a grasp of this multilayered, confusing and exceedingly tragic conflict that is unfolding in the Levant.

I’ve also been following the comments section, but have yet to refrain from posting. However, after reading through the above six pages concerning the latest blog entry, I feel like I Had To Post a few words concerning the unconstructive direction the conversation has taken:

—————————————-

@BRUNO:

Why on earth are you making the claim of Mr. Landis’ membership or association with the Council on Foreign Relations the sole factor through which you suggest we should judge his whole professional credibility on a subject that he has obviously dedicated his academic career.

This seems pretty ridiculous in light of the fact that the CoFR is one of the oldest and most prestigious and central non-governmental foreign policy institution thats been active since the first decades of the last century ie. the whole time when the US has been the other or the single most important actor in international relations.

I can’t find Mr. Landis on the CoFR’s member list now, so he has either been a term member (not a lifetime member) or just simply spoken at the council or worked in association with it.
http://www.cfr.org/about/membership/roster.html?letter=L

A search on the Council’s website yields interviews with Mr. Landis where he is, not surprisingly, consulted as an expert on Syria. He is also, among others included as a reference on analysis concerning Syria.

Wouldn’t the most likely and logical explanation be that Mr Landis and the CoFR are interlinked due to the fact that one party is probably the most important foreign policy think tank in Washington and the other is a leading academic on a subject of importance to the direction of US foreign policy?

Is this really so unbelievable that the first thing that should come to one’s mind is some sort of conspiracy involving almost the whole American foreign policy community and discourse, NGOs, Academics and most of the political establishment?

Seriously?!

@AMAJAD:

I’m really surprised you’ve had the patience and class to deal with “commentators” such as the person I’ve just responded to above. I’m writing this partly because of the sense of a sort of compassionate shame I had when I read these comments.

I’m not going to make any excuse or apologise on anyone elses behalf (thats their prerogative and responsibility, should they ever have the decency to do so), but I’ll try to give you my perspective and view where I think such attitudes come from:

You’ve probably noticed that one thing in common with many pro-assad commentators have is the strong belief that the events that are unfolding ARE NOT the product of many changing variables that include the subjective choices of the many parties involved (Assad clan, FSA, GCC-countries, Iran+allies, Russia, China, US+allies) and also factors that are outside their control.

On the contrary, it seems that these commentators are convinced that there is a carefully scripted plot that a seemingly omnipotent antagonist, in this case surprisingly the United States and its allies, is executing at will. They don’t seem to be bothered by any real world limitations or contradictions that such a scenario would entail but insist that whatever happens is an intended result of such a plan and not the sum of many known and unknown factors.

One has to only look at what a disaster US policy, even if it had the most sinister and belligerent aims, has been in the past ten years both in the Middle East and Central/South Asia.
You don’t even need to look any further than next door to Iraq and see how utterly incompetent US decision making has been and how it lead to effectively nothing more than a minority dictatorship being replaced by a majoritarian one. And also a regime that went from being the biggest threat and counter-balance to Islamic Republic in Tehran to its effective vassal-state.

If this all leads to a Neocolonial Crusader-Zionist take-over of the Middle East, then its going to be one hell of a plan. I’m sure that the breathtaking final twist is just around the corner.

In the meantime, I hope these people come to their senses and stop projecting their paranoia, as excuses to ignore a very real human tragedy that is unfolding right before our eyes. Until then I hope you continue to take part in the discussion and remain unfazed by these fantasies.

Thank you, and keep discussing, keep debating, and keep talking about this important issue.

July 8th, 2012, 8:21 am

 

omen said:

dan rather special on now, covering inside syria. on axs, formerly hdtv.

also interviews mcclatchy reporter david enders.

July 8th, 2012, 9:09 am

 

omen said:

251. ALDENDESHE

all of your racist conspiracy theories aren’t going to relieve regime enablers of responsibility for allowing the assad crime family & inner circle such a free hand in destroying syria.

July 8th, 2012, 9:15 am

 

Observer said:

Many on this blog repeatedly show their apprehension about anything Islamist.

We have had many that post reports about the fate of Christians in Iraq as a forerunner of events in Syria

Many are adamant on imposing a secular Arab nationalism identity on the multitude of Syria’s mosaic.

Syrian identity was significantly stronger in the 50’s and Arab nationalism was at its height in the 60’s; however, the convergence of the following resulted in a FAILED STATE;
1. The adoption by the Baath of disastrous economic reforms that may have helped the poor early on only to trap them in a state run economy that cannot provide them with the means to prosper.
2. The institutionalized corruption adopted by Hafez with crony capitalism, the creation of layers of bureaucracy, and the construction of a security house of cards.
3. The defeat in 67 that should have brought commissions of inquiry and resignations, instead the minister of defense was promoted to President
4. The liberalization of the economy in such a way as to promote the wealth of the inner circle.
5. The extreme favoritism towards the Alawi community at the expense of the majority Sunni.
All of this weakens the identity and the National Syrian Party were it to run in elections today would not find 10% of the voters in its favor. Likewise were it not for the original benefits incurred from joining the Baath you would not have had 2 million members.

So how about a federation. How about autonomy for the Alawi and the Druze and for the Kurds. How about a regional federation and let the PEOPLE decide. They may decide on a dead end, but LET THEM DECIDE. This attitude of ” I know what is best for you” is no longer tenable.

On a different note to the spam producers Please stop no one reads your posts least of which xinhuanet or North Korean news agency or stupid SANA.

July 8th, 2012, 9:29 am

 

zoo said:

Libya: Rule of law or Rule of militias?

http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/patrick-cockburn-libyans-have-voted-but-will-the-new-rulers-be-able-to-curb-violent-militias-7922358.html

Too many journalists and media outlets decided early on that Gaddafi’s forces were the black hats and the insurgents the white hats. They pumped out anti-Gaddafi atrocity stories, often without checking the facts, such as a supposed campaign of mass rape by government troops. Investigations by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and a United Nations team discovered no evidence for this, but their findings were largely ignored by the media. The insurgents claimed that they had found the bodies of government troops executed by their own side when they tried to defect, but Amnesty uncovered a video of the same men alive and being aggressively interrogated by the rebels, who most likely shot the soldiers themselves.

Last week Amnesty produced a devastating report – “Libya: Rule of law or rule of militias?” – based on meticulous and lengthy investigations, portraying Libya as a country where violent and predatory militia gangs have become the real power in the land
….
A difficulty for foreign governments and media alike is that, having rejoiced in the overthrow of Gaddafi last year, they do not want bad news to besmirch their victory. Ms Eltahawy says that part of the problem in getting people to pay attention to what is happening these days is that since the fall of Gaddafi “Libya is always portrayed as a success story”.

July 8th, 2012, 9:31 am

 

irritated said:

Observer #262

“Please stop no one reads your posts”

Neither yours… , only the last lines, the rest is pure repetition and boring.

July 8th, 2012, 9:35 am

 

mjabali said:

Mr. Halabi:

I know we agree probably on 95% of things overall, if not more. It is the emotions these days that bring the worst in us.

al-Assad and his group must leave asap, but how? Things are getting really bad. violence is not abating. The Syrian identity is getting destroyed and replaced by something else derived from religious alliances. Syria and Syrians are in a bad shape today.

AS for your family’s history, for me it is very interesting for many reasons. One, the time period they came in was when the Seljukes took over current day Iran establishing the beginning of their strong mini empire, the Fatimids ruled Baghdad during al-Mustansir Bi Allah, and there was a huge Alawi population in Alleppo. So when your family came to Allepo there were many Alawis there. The Ottomans took care of them all over there.

Sayf al-Dawlah’s era was golden for Alawis. It was around 950, a hundred years before your family came to Alleppo. The area around Allepo that today is very Sunni had many Alawi areas for sure. Still till today, there are some Shia villages here and there, but it is overwhelmingly Sunni now. This area was almost 100 percent Christians at one point. There may existed some old Syrian religions, but that area was Christians. Many converted to Alawis during Sayf al-Dawleh probably…we need to know more. Church records may help a lot here.

Does your family has any books or documents you can share with us? We need to know the real history of our country. We were taught the most biased narratives.

July 8th, 2012, 9:37 am

 

omen said:

mjabali

you posted a dead link. i couldn’t find this article on alawis by mulhem.

July 8th, 2012, 9:38 am

 

bronco said:

254. ann

With the french Armenian law coming back to haunt him and the accusation of Russia about the spy plane being legally downed, I think Erdogan will need an urgent colonoscopy.

July 8th, 2012, 9:38 am

 

zoo said:

Is Islam to Blame for Freedom Deficit in Middle East?
By Riaz Hassan
July 8, 2012
http://www.realclearworld.com/articles/2012/07/08/is_islam_to_blame_for_freedom_deficit_in_middle_east__100127.html

The age-old debate about Islam’s role in the political backwardness of the Middle East has returned to the fore. Dramatic developments of the Arab Spring, followed by re-emergence of authoritarian tendencies, reignite the debate. While debates will continue, a tentative answer can be offered: Flirtation with authoritarianism could be linked more to millennia of Arab history and culture rather than with Islam.

In his seminal work, Muslim Society, eminent British social anthropologist Ernest Gellner boldly asserted that, judged by various criteria, “of the three great Western monotheism, [Islam is] the one closest to modernity.”

….
But there’s an acute deficit in development and freedom in the Muslim world, evident from the United Nations and World Bank Development reports, giving rise to contentious debate about the causes. Culprits include Islamic theology and culture, oil, Arab culture and institutions, the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, desert terrain and institutions, weak civil society and the subservient status of women.

Perhaps the most contested debates center on whether Islam is the main cause of these twin deficits of development and freedom.
….

July 8th, 2012, 9:42 am

 

omen said:

221. OBSERVER said: wake up and smell the roses there is NO SUCH THING AS A SYRIAN NATIONAL IDENTITY.

if that was true, there wouldn’t be an fsa, there wouldn’t be an lcc, there wouldn’t be an opposition movement, period. everybody would just give up and emigrate to one of the neighboring countries. instead, syrians are fighting to get their country back.

people without identity don’t fight to reclaim their birthright.

July 8th, 2012, 9:49 am

 

zoo said:

Annan to visit Damascus on Monday: Syrian ministry
July/08/2012

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/annan-to-visit-damascus-on-monday-syrian-ministry.aspx?pageID=238&nID=24984&NewsCatID=359
….
The former UN chief oversaw a meeting in Geneva last weekend that agreed on a transition plan for Syria that skirted around the issue dividing Western powers from Russia and China: whether or not Assad should have a role in a new unity government.

July 8th, 2012, 9:50 am

 

zoo said:

Tit for Tat

Syrian military conducts military exercises
http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/syrian-military-conducts-military-exercises.aspx?pageID=238&nID=24976&NewsCatID=352

DAMASCUS – The Associated Press

Syria’s military has begun large-scale military exercises involving missile tests and ground and air operations meant to test its readiness to respond to aggression.

The show of force appears to be designed as a warning to the international community not to interfere in the Syrian crisis.

The state-run SANA news agency says in a report today the maneuvers started a day earlier with naval forces simulating a scenario to repel an attack from the sea.

July 8th, 2012, 9:52 am

 

omen said:

zoo, what do you call arabs who exploit western bigotry against islam to further their own sectarian agenda?

this is akin to blacks joining the kkk in the vain hope of gaining power.

you and the other regimists look ridiculous stooping so low.

July 8th, 2012, 9:58 am

 

majedkhaldoun said:

Mjabali
You keep distorting history, Arab has been in Syria for over 3400 years ,not 1400 year.
Some christians are only in Syria recently, Armans came recently, Crusaders left some christians in Syria.
Alawi are not originally from Syria, they mostly came from northwest Iran,Some of them are decendants of Qaramitah.

Ghufran, Khaled abu Saleh is partly palastinian, Just like you ,you said that your mother is Palastinian, Syria is part of the Arab world,All Syrians who lives in Syria,born there are Syrians.

Ann I found it hard to believe that the Syrian airdefence is so great, The plane was shot 12 miles away from Syrian coast, and the plane was flying in low altitude, we don’t know all the facts, I was the first to suspect Russian defence that shot the plane.

July 8th, 2012, 10:01 am

 

majedkhaldoun said:

Sayf Al Dawla was not Alawi, and the Alawis at that time were very small community,if you have evidence to the contrary show us.

July 8th, 2012, 10:32 am

 

Uzair8 said:

Were the regime’s military exercises partly an attempt to boost the military morale recently damaged by high profile military defections.

July 8th, 2012, 10:45 am

 

majedkhaldoun said:

It is getting hot in Egypt
Mursi just annulled the military junta decision to dissolve the parliament and call it to convene.
This will cause confrontation,
Mursi will visit KSA wednesday.

July 8th, 2012, 10:51 am

 

Amjad said:

IHTP, thank you for your comments. The regimist apologists do indeed view everything through the prism of a giant cosmic conspiracy. The alternative, that the country is fed up with the inept and corrupt rule of a blood thirsty family, is too unthinkable for some to contemplate.

When the demonstrations first started in Dar’a, I was firmly, strongly, fanatically, uncompromisingly….neutral. I was such a fence sitter, the fence made permanent marks on my butt. Then in April 2011, Homs came out for its Tahrir Square moment. The regime released drug smugglers and murderers from its jails, armed them, and let them loose on the demonstration.

Over 80 people were murdered in cold blood that night. It was the biggest mistake Bashar ever made. Homs became the epicenter of the revolution, and the regime has never come close to managing to subdue it. It was the “Have you no shame, sir?” moment of the Syrian Revolution. Just like Joe Macarthy’s rabid persecution of anyone that made an easy target was exposed for the witch hunt it was, April 2011 finally laid to rest forever the lie of Bashar and Asma as a “modern, liberal couple”.

Pro-regimists have yet to adequately answer; why was Najati Tayara jailed for six months? Why was Ali Ferzat brutally tortured and beaten up? Why were Malek Jandali’s elderly parents brutalized and their home burned? Were all these people Salafi terrorists? The pro regimists cannot answer these questions, for to even examine the answers is to shatter their alternative reality bubble, without which it would be impossible to cling on to their 40 year old way of thinking.

July 8th, 2012, 10:56 am

 

Norman said:

As long as the opposition does not accept free election under international supervision i see no chance for president Assad to leave under fire and a take over by the opposition by force,

IHTP,

If the West is not fueling the crises in Syria, then how do explain that the never called on the opposition to do in Syria what they asking the Talaban to do in Afghanistan, surrender your arms and join the political process, under international supervision.

And if you think that i don’t write good English, spare your words,as i know that.

July 8th, 2012, 10:56 am

 

omen said:

258. IHTP, wow, i didn’t read you first before i posted.

some of us have hit our limit at the same time it seems.

kefaya (enough)

July 8th, 2012, 11:07 am

 

Norman said:

AMJAD, IHTP.

We all agree on the disease, lack of opportunity, inequality lack of chance to serve and corruption, what we don’t agree on is the treatment, i for one do not think that anything is worth what happened and is happening to Syria, It is like treating a Basal cell carcinoma on the face of a patient by cutting his head, you just need to cut the cancer out ,now the patient is dead trying save him.

July 8th, 2012, 11:12 am

 

Elian said:

Do others feel that this site becoming more like “7ettan” one sided blog, It is unfortunate, I liked this blog for years, but it seems many have departed this site and if you are not a fan of the western propaganda in destroying Syria, you are attacked here with least to say an FB language.
It seems the intellectuals of syria are not allowed to participate in the new Syria. You have to be part of the conspiracy and you Agree with SNC corruption, otherwise you are part of the regime.
similar to Egypt, either with the MB or you are out.
Syrian revolution is following the same pattern.
The west must have a strong agenda to have the Islamists rule the Middle east, time will tell what is the purpose, but from the past history of the USA, it always turns against its allies and destroy them years later. It provides the MIC jobs for decades to come.

July 8th, 2012, 11:24 am

 

omen said:

277. NORMAN said: IHTP, If the West is not fueling the crises in Syria, then how do explain that the never called on the opposition to do in Syria what they asking the Talaban to do in Afghanistan, surrender your arms and join the political process, under international supervision.

the west has provided cover for the regime over and over again. obama went to the various gulf countries and urged them not to provide the rebels any arms. un officials go out of the way to chastise both the opposition and the regime for violence as if the two are equivalent when it is painfully obvious they are not. assad has all the advantage of state power. the rebels are meagerly armed.

surrender arms? assad himself has refused to pull back the army (as called for in the kofi plan) and persists in ceaseless shelling.

p.s. i didn’t see anybody criticize your english. my grammar isn’t the best either. it’s not style that matters but the merits of one’s arguments.

July 8th, 2012, 11:35 am

 

Uzair8 said:

#277 Norman

Norman what makes you say that the opposition (esp LCC and FSA) would listen to the West? Why would the West think it has such control of the ‘street’ opposition?

The opposition will make their own judgement on steps to be taken. They didn’t take permission from the West when they went out to demonstrate in the face of bullets.

#279 Norman said:

“….,i for one do not think that anything is worth what happened and is happening to Syria,…”

Norman you make a jump. The reasons you listed were responded to in the form of peaceful protests, initially calling for reform.

The regime’s brutal response brought about the current situation. Not the lack of opportunity, equality and corruption etc.

July 8th, 2012, 11:40 am

 

Ghufran said:

Does it really matter if Saif Addawlah was an alawi or Shia ? He was not Sunni but he was a Muslim who is considered by most historians, Sunnis included, as a bright courageous leader who protected his people and stood against foreign enemies . Many scholars point out the fact that two of his teachers were alawis, that and other factors led some to call him an alawi , I found one source affiliated with militant sunni school of thought (thought and militant probably do not belong in the same sentence) that called him a Rafidi.

July 8th, 2012, 11:50 am

 

Amir in Tel Aviv said:

Good News Flash (No. Not from Syria)

Early reports on Sunday showed that the National Forces Alliance (NFA), a coalition led by former prime minister Mahmoud Jibril, is leading the polls, said Faisal Krekshi, the coalition’s secretary general.
http://www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/2012/07/201278103015263203.html

Where are all of you, doom and gloom false SC prophets?

If this is possible in Libya, a country with no institutions no political background and no democratic past, just imagine what can be the future of Syria…
.

July 8th, 2012, 11:52 am

 

IHTP said:

#276. AMJAD

Wow..I feel like I don’t have the right words for this but thank you for expressing what you just did. That, I think really hits home the point that Bashar is really just clueless and pretty much has been when it became apparent that the people simply had stop fearing him.

I think he is just completely the wrong person in a dangerously wrong position. I don’t want to see Syria fall apart into the abyss of sectarian civil war like Iraq

July 8th, 2012, 12:13 pm

 

Antoine said:

I do not agree with those of the view that Hama 1982 was necessary in any way, shape or form. In my view the regime mishandled the MB insurgency from the very beginnning in 1978-79. Syria was not the only State in this period to face increased Islamist activity and armed challenge to the State, but no regime reacted in this manner.

Almost all of the 22 Arab countries have witnessed pretty high levels of Islamist violent activity and prolonged periods of low-level insurgency. But none of them resorted to the tactics of Assad in 1978-82.

( It is my view that violent Islamism has mostly social causes and its root cause is social inequality ).

July 8th, 2012, 12:27 pm

 

majedkhaldoun said:

Mursi decision to annul the constitution court judgement, is based on the fact that with no constitution in Egypt, the constitution court is not legal, so their decision is not binding.
The only legal entity in Egypt is President Mursi , who get his authority from the people.

July 8th, 2012, 12:28 pm

 

Uzair8 said:

285. IHTP said:

“…Bashar is really just clueless and pretty much has been when it became apparent that the people simply had stop fearing him.”

Wizard of Oz?

A couple of weeks ago I was trying to come up with a humorous Wizard of Oz analogy. Tara and Observer have already shared the Godfather analogy.

July 8th, 2012, 12:30 pm

 

Antoine said:

Aldendeshe,

Interesting views you have about Sunni collaborators of the regime.

What do you think of the Sunni Baathist bureaucrats and civil servants and diplomats who are collaborating with Assad ? What about the Sunni academicians (“intellectuals”) in Syrian universities who are apologists for the regime ?

Does SNP have the plans to clean up the public sector of these Sunni collaborationists ?

__________________________________________________________________

( FSA-LCC has already drawn up lists of young educated unemployed people from Idleb-Hama-Homs-Daraa who should be allowed into the Civil Service after kicking out some of the serving ones, after the fall of the regime. These people have been trying to get into the Service for the last 10 years but have failed because of official political bias. I know many such people myself. They gained real administrative experience in the last 15 months in the revolutionary councils. )

July 8th, 2012, 12:33 pm

 

IHTP said:

#276. AMJAD

Wow..I feel like I don’t have the right words for this but thank you for expressing what you just did. That, I think really hits home the point that Bashar is really just clueless and pretty much has been when it became apparent that the people simply had stop fearing him.

I think he is just completely the wrong person in a dangerously wrong position. I don’t want to see Syria fall apart into the abyss of sectarian civil war like Iraq or Lebanon, but this man has got to go. For Sunnis, for Shias, for Allawites and Christians. For all Syrians, he is poison.

Its so painfully clear that the only cards he knows how to play is either unhinged brutality or those circus “reforms”. Honestly, I really think he has no fucking idea what he is doing. He appointed some random yes man to be his prime minister, and the mock elections have pretty much discredited him as any sort democratic actor. All that is left for him to do is put the noose around his neck and kick the chair.

Unfortunately he seems adamant with taking the Syrian people with him. In situations like these, I’d rather see the root cause of the problem, Bashar being forced out/eliminated/exiled and then moving towards a democratic order through a transitional phase. And this needs to happen before its really a full-on sectarian war and the Allawites think that they are out of options.

@Norman: I’m not advocating a total dismantling of the whole Syrian state, when I say Assad needs to go. Even though there surely are many people within the ranks of the regime with blood on their hands, even more devastation would follow if we demolish a powerstrucutre that has been in place for 40 years. We have too many examples of this and I think most Syrians would understand as they’ve witnessed the carange of Iraq after the Americans decided it was a good idea to completely gut the entire state apparatus, without providing any replacement.

The end result can of course be nothing but a democratic, inclusive Syria where minority rights are respected, but where the majority of the citizens aren’t degraded to a second class status merely due to their faith or sectarian background. However to reach this, I’d rather waste a bit more time than human lives.

July 8th, 2012, 12:35 pm

 

omen said:

Egypt’s president-elect, Mohamed Morsi, will appoint a woman and a Coptic Christian as his vice president, according to a policy adviser. If the appointments go through, it will be the first time in Egypt’s history that either a woman or a Christian has occupied such an empowered position in the executive branch.

was this plan to nominate a woman and a christian made known before the election? if so, might have given mursi the two to three points needed to provide the winning margin. clever.

July 8th, 2012, 12:35 pm

 

Antoine said:

16. ALDENDESHE said:

LOL. I been getting calls all day now from SNP members asking if they should sell everything and pack their bags. At least you made us laugh and cheered up today. But I referred them all to to this sober reality:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lET_8a8QAeM

_________________________________________________________________

And I refer Aldendeshe and SNP team to this sober reality :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=91m-tJ_CQls&feature=youtu.be

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qVBlOYpH2p8&feature=youtu.be

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PZmKKcY9Sw&feature=youtu.be

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3PheBsliBwc&feature=youtu.be

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lm10y7SARTA&feature=youtu.be

______________________________________________________________

( Since previously you have referred me to really long 2 hr videos, I assume you will look into all 5 of these 1 minute videos.)

July 8th, 2012, 12:49 pm

 

IHTP said:

#291. @Omen:

The same Mursi who won the Presidency for the MB – which wasn’t supposed to contest the office at all. Not surprising.

July 8th, 2012, 1:04 pm

 

majedkhaldoun said:

The news from Ghufran about Mustapha Tlass interview with france 24 is again proven to be false, no such interview.
Till we hear directly from Tlass we should not believe any rumors.

July 8th, 2012, 1:59 pm

 

aldendeshe said:

292. Antoine said:
16. ALDENDESHE said:
And I refer Aldendeshe and SNP team to this sober reality :
________________________________________________________________

I am sorry Antoine, first my security system will not permits me to click on embedded links, and second, not really interested in others propaganda. Specially when no one knows on whose payroll they are operating. Maybe if you have a real name, a C.V. and one can search the internet to find more info about you, may ask you to email the links. I am just interested in pushing my strategy and SNP goals. The bible is the only book I read over and over, and always come back to it, not only to find the answer, but learn about the future and how it will all come to pass.

Can you or others please describe or state what the videos are all about. Since they are 1 minute long, it should not be that hard to do in words.

July 8th, 2012, 2:12 pm

 

aldendeshe said:

260. omen said:
251. ALDENDESHE
all of your racist conspiracy theories aren’t going to relieve regime enablers of responsibility for allowing the assad crime family & inner circle such a free hand in destroying syria.
_________________________________________________________________

I sure hope so, but everyday passing it looks like that is a fraudulently intended goal, both in deceleration and operation on the ground. Most of the regime enabler that helped the Assad’s destroy Syria you are talking about are sipping whiskey in Parisian Clubs. Someone is lying to the poor Syrians. And you OMEN needs to get off this blog and go after them in their mansions in Marbela, Lake Geneva and Paris luxurious suburbs.

July 8th, 2012, 2:14 pm

 

aldendeshe said:

289. Antoine said:
Aldendeshe,
Interesting views you have about Sunni collaborators of the regime.

What do you think of the Sunni Baathist bureaucrats and civil servants and diplomats who are collaborating with Assad ? What about the Sunni academicians (“intellectuals”) in Syrian universities who are apologists for the regime ?
Does SNP have the plans to clean up the public sector of these Sunni collaborationists ?

___________________________________________________________________
Purge, Purge, Purge, ban from future jobs…go back to the Agriculture fields or become a factory workers, start a union of this and that, use the fraudulent socialist skills you learned from the Zionist Leninist finally do something useful and positive for Syrian society pass fair labor laws, safety OSHA and practise’s, forget about the Paris suburb exile, or run with bribes and corruption cash loot like your masters. They are infectious disease, parasite that have infected the national Syrian body to near death and need to deal with this disease effectively and quickly.

July 8th, 2012, 2:15 pm

 

Amjad said:

IHTP

“He appointed some random yes man to be his prime minister, and the mock elections have pretty much discredited him as any sort democratic actor”

Never in the history of human electionering have so many elections, changed so little, for so many. The “elections” and “referendums” were abysmal failures. They did not improve matters one bit, the turn out was a fraction of what we saw in Libya these past two days, and the rubber stamped parliament of “The Highest Bidders” will change nothing.

Look at Professor Landis’ list of the regime’s inner circle; a family run corporation that has been in the same family for five generations doesn’t have as many people related to one another in its decision making body. Heck, even the Saudi government, a monarchy, doesn’t have so many relations in it.

Syria is going through its most challenging period. Bashar is not the person to lead it. Indeed, he is not even the person to lead the Alawites. The Alawites deserve better. Like all Syrians, they are resilient, tough, and they haven’t taken the easy way out and fled abroad. Syrian society is the most resilient one in the region, but it is at war with itself, thanks to the unparalleled bungling and stupidity of the Assad family.

July 8th, 2012, 2:17 pm

 

Amjad said:

“Purge, Purge, Purge, ban from future jobs”

Madness. Does anyone actually think that an entire civil service can be dumped and a new one trained overnight? The civil service employs most of the country. You start with one person who you label a “collaborator” and where does it end? Pretty soon you’ll be denying jobs to anyone who doesn’t follow your own political brand of thinking. So how are you any different from the Baathists you are seeking to replace?

Anyone who wants to govern a sophisticated and old society like Syria has to have a level of thinking above that of a mafia gang.

July 8th, 2012, 2:23 pm

 

aldendeshe said:

The Baath party did it, not only that, it nationalized all industries and confiscated all viable agriculture lands, ceased big homes to turn it to party HQ, Baathist, Socialist institutions and have manged to rule that way since March 8, 1963.

“…Anyone who wants to govern a sophisticated and old society like Syria has to have a level of thinking above that of a mafia gang…”

ANd they were no sophisticated either, just plain illiterare peasant stock from rural village that had no water, electricity or sewege. ANd did mange for 5 decade to rule Syria sophisticated people.

July 8th, 2012, 2:29 pm

 

Syrian Nationalist Party said:

@ANTOINE SAID
“……….All of this weakens the identity and the National Syrian Party were it to run in elections today would not find 10% of the voters in its favor. Likewise were it not for the original benefits incurred from joining the Baath you would not have had 2 million members. ………”

Even Bashar Assad Baathist regime intelligence apparatus said to Bashar that if SNP under Aldendeshe leadership were to run freely in Syria, it will cause quick depletion of the Baath party membership to the new party, marginalizing the Baath party. That is why, Bashar never caved in and granted a foot print for SNP in Syria, rather promoted the old SSNP factions. With due respect to them, they are ineffective in galvanizing the support needed, partially because of the existing, tilted, political structure in Syria, partly lack of proper experience and know how. In our estimate, with Iran financial help to cover media cost and running the massive political education program we been building for a decade, exposing our, Syria’s and Islam’s adversaries and enemies, we can quickly secure at minimum 60% of votes and at maximum 88% of votes.

But SNP is not after domination of Syria and Lebanon politically. We are happy with any percentage, our strategy is as what many here call it “spreading our venomous racist propaganda”. We will work to assist others in building political parties and educate them about the reality, so that they all can have the very same agendas and goals as SNP. It is not about percentages or parties, it is about Political awareness and Syrian National interests, exposing the con man that gets his check from scrupulous outsiders vs from sources that have Syria’s best interests at heart.

July 8th, 2012, 2:30 pm

 

Syrian Nationalist Party said:

@OBSERVER SAID:
“….then wake up and smell the roses there is NO SUCH THING AS A SYRIAN NATIONAL IDENTITY…”

Of course there is one, the Zionists will not allow it to flourish. They fought the idea for Eight decades. Are you educated about its past history in Syria and Lebanon, don’t you see how it has been suppressed and never given chance to rise up. Don’t you see how desperate they are trying to block it, even now, from participating in Syria’s political struggle.

Syrian identity goes diametrically in opposite to Zionism goal of establishing Greater Israel. They wants to dominate all, even Iran is an obstacle. That pipe dream will requires first and foremost, destroying Syrian identity, confusing them with a worthless Arab one. Who do you think came up with Arab Nationalism? In Egypt, it was a Freemason named Nasser, he destroyed Egypt and Syria. In Syria it was 2 members of a Turkish masonic lodge, a Christian and a Jew named Aflak. Who sponsored Arab Nationalism in Iraq, who backed Saddam and gave him all the weapon and WMD’s? And do you see how in the end they destroyed the land of Iraq and people there. Recently, when it became apparent that it failed miserably, they quickly sponsored an ISLAMIC IDENTITY tried to spread it like wild fire all over the Middle East, In Syria, they thought to hit 2 birds in one stone by making it A SUNNI ISLAMIC IDENTITY. Are you aware that Moslem Brotherhood founder Hassan Al-Banna was a Freemason on the payroll. They are now spending hundredth of millions pushing Islamic identity in Syria ignorantly thinking that this will get them close to the Zionist dream by having Syrians dragged into sectarian fighting, and they tried very hard on this blog and in all the media, as well as on the ground for nearly 18 months to push this plot but, they failed miserably, met a dead end.

Why they failed? because there is a strong SYRIAN IDENTITY that rejected the Zionist plot, not only that the Syrian identity holders are smart, highly educated, knows past, and future (not the fabricated delusional past and future). Syrians are the oldest nation on earth and they will be the one leading the future.

July 8th, 2012, 2:31 pm

 

Amjad said:

“The Baath party did it, not only that, it nationalized all industries and confiscated all viable agriculture lands”

I didn’t realize that we now consider the devil as the standard by which we measure our own actions.

“ANd they were no sophisticated either, just plain illiterare peasant stock from rural village that had no water, electricity or sewege. ANd did mange for 5 decade to rule Syria sophisticated people”

*People* can be dumb, illogical, and backwards. A society is greater than the sum of its parts. Look at how many revolutions and civil wars the British had to go through before they ended up with what they have now. They fought two world wars and faced down the Soviet Union to preserve their way of life.

Meantime, Syria spent thousands of years content to be part of whatever power or empire happened to be top dog at the time. And when we finally won our independence, countless coups were only ended when a bloodthirsty tyrant killed off all his opponents. Freedom was never going to be won by a few months of demonstration, and the Syrian people have shown that they are willing to pay the price to win theirs, unlike so many other people and societies in the Middle East (*cough cough Iran, Jordan, Lebanon*)

July 8th, 2012, 3:20 pm

 

Syrialover said:

IHTP and AMJAD

Thanks a million for your surge of first rate commentary and discussion.

You’ve lifted my mood and confidence that there is plenty of good thinking going on out there about Syria.

It’s reminding me of the good old days of Syria Commment. Before the rush of spamsters and cranks rushed on board to defend Assad when he got himself into fatal trouble.

Many good contributors quit in disgust. And the loyal corps of authentic, quality contributors who’ve stayed almost had to wear gas masks at times it got so bad.

Just recently, the quality mix of the forum has started to firm up again. I think it’s because Assad’s position has now deteriorated beyond repair and his supporters are burning out or assigned to other tasks.

(Bruno’s burst of commentary diluted it, but you’ve more than offset that.)

You also got me laughing out loud, thanks IHTP (#258):

“If this all leads to a Neocolonial Crusader-Zionist take-over of the Middle East, then its going to be one hell of a plan. I’m sure that the breathtaking final twist is just around the corner.”

July 8th, 2012, 3:23 pm

 

irritated said:

#291 Omen

“Mursi will appoint a woman and a Coptic Christian as his vice president, ”

Mursi has 8 vice presidents, you guess which ranks will be the “copt” and “the woman” if ever elected… symbolic.
He reiterated that if he leaves a ‘moslem’ vice president will take over. There is no way a country with a majority of moslems have a christian or a woman president.
It is pure PR…

July 8th, 2012, 4:36 pm

 

zoo said:

Contrary to Egypt and Tunisia, the Libyan Moslem Brotherhood is tainted by its collaboration with Seif El Islam since 2003 and its recent suspicious cozyness with Qatar. The early election results show that it has less chances to take a prominent role in the future of the country.

An imminent failure for Qatar’s MB candidates and a sigh of relief for Western countries.

Libyan election hints at blow to Islamists
By MAGGIE MICHAEL | Associated Press – 37 mins ago
http://news.yahoo.com/libyan-election-hints-blow-islamists-195714554.html

…..
Since Gadhafi’s fall, the Muslim Brotherhood in Libya also has faced questions about its close ties to the wealthy Gulf state of Qatar, which funneled weapons and funds to the anti-Gadhafi forces. Some critics accuse Qatar’s rulers of trying to exert influence through Libya’s Brotherhood as a bridge between Egypt and Tunisia.

In December, influential Egyptian cleric Youssef al-Qaradawi, who is based in Qatar, flew to Libya aboard a Qatari royal jet and was given a feast by a senior Brotherhood leader, Bashir al-Kebti.

Later, al-Qaradawi and Tunisian Brotherhood leader Rashid al-Ghannoushi traveled to Tripoli to attend a National Reconciliation conference. But members of the rebel-led National Transition Council withdrew in protest “because they only saw it as a promotion and propaganda for the Brotherhood,” said Fathi Baja, head of political committee in the NTC.

“Qatar for the Brotherhood is like a shrine,” he added. “Twenty-four hour visits, around the clock, members coming and going to Qatar.”

July 8th, 2012, 5:23 pm

 

bronco said:

Amjad

“The Baath party did it, not only that, it nationalized all industries and confiscated all viable agriculture lands”

Nasser did it too… That was the ideology of that era inspired by the Soviet model and the Israeli Kibboutz.
It turned out to be a failure, but who could have forecasted it?

July 8th, 2012, 5:29 pm

 

Halabi said:

The lies never end. Irritable (bowel syndrome) said: “There is no way a country with a majority of moslems have a christian or a woman president.”

Khaleda Zia in Bangladesh and Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan were heads of state in countries with a majority of Muslims.

In Assad’s secular Syria, the president has to be a Muslim (and in some interpretations a male) according to the new and old constitutions. Pakistan, Bangladesh and now Egypt under the Muslim Brotherhood are more progressive than the ignorant racist killers who rule Syria.

July 8th, 2012, 5:36 pm

 

omen said:

(3:20) Freedom was never going to be won by a few months of demonstration, and the Syrian people have shown that they are willing to pay the price to win theirs, unlike so many other people and societies in the Middle East (*cough cough Iran

amjad! that’s not nice. sometimes one has to tactically withdraw in order to be able to regroup and come back stronger. there shouldn’t be shame in doing the smart thing. nobody (i hope) mocked syrians for failing to continue after the hama massacre back in the 80s.

it’s a mistake to be overconfident. this thing isn’t won yet. we don’t know what this regime pushed against the wall might resort to. i don’t like to think about it but that stockpile of theirs worries me.

the revolt in iran has been ongoing for a while. before 2009, there was a student movement on 1999 that was also ruthlessly put down. these thing build upon one another. i’m sure activists are going over lessons learned and strategizing what could be done better next time.

i suspect this “peaceful, peaceful” mindset, while useful in the beginning, winds up causing paralyzation once past the initial stages of a revolution. it’s stupid to unilaterally disarm when the other side is loaded for bear.

i wonder sometimes if there would would have even been an arab spring if the iranian uprising hadn’t been internationally televised two years earlier.

July 8th, 2012, 6:02 pm

 
 

Karabennemsi said:

@ 310 Halabi

It will be very interesting to watch or read Todenhöfers interview with the AQ-fighter.

Also i was surprised how forgiving Dr Assad seemed to be.

There have not been any similar interviews on German TV for a long time, and it is great that the interview is not edited and that there can not be any discussion about mistranslations.

July 8th, 2012, 6:49 pm

 

omen said:

310. HALABI said:
Bashar interviewed on German TV.

http://www.ardmediathek.de/das-erste/weltspiegel/syrien-exklusiv-gespraech-mit-syriens-praesident-assad?documentId=11073196

thanks halabi.

lies about houla at 5:07.

July 8th, 2012, 7:19 pm

 

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