Thursday, March 31, 2011

Robin Yassin-Kassab: Dinosaur in Denial

Great column on Syria,
In the most sinister development so far, armed gangs were unleashed on Latakia, Syria’s Mediterranean port city. In Sunni areas they declared themselves to be vengeful Alawis; in Alawi areas they posed as vengeful Sunnis. Most informed Syrians believe these thugs are the regime-linked Shabiha militia aiming to provoke sectarian conflict and thereby scare Syrians back to loyalty to the devil they know. Competing rumours from the mouths of regime supporters blame Lebanese, Iraqi or Palestinian provocateurs, but these versions are hardly reassuring. If, after half a century of strict emergency laws, shadowy foreign militias can still roam the streets, what’s the point of the security-obsessed state?

Michael Totten » Who Are the Libyan Rebels? Allah saved us, he sent us French and British and American planes like angels

Michael Totten » Who Are the Libyan Rebels?

On the ground w/ rebels in Libya,
About the Islamists—there are radical elements amongst the rebels, to be sure, but they are a minority, and they’re all grateful to the West at the moment. You would be amazed to see the number of people around here waving Western flags and thanking the West, especially France.

In Benghazi, every person I’ve met so far has insisted on showing me the bridge in town where the Qaddafi troops arrived and started firing—and that bridge is actually inside Benghazi—saying he would cleanse the city “street by street, and house by house.” They all say, "Allah saved us, he sent us French and British and American planes like angels“, Alhamdulillah.”

Electronic Intifada: The language of liberal war

ei: The language of liberal war

Words matter, especially when you consider many reading us in translation.
The language of liberal war may still flow as easily in the West as Libya's sweet crude, but even the true believers are running on fumes on this one.

Few critics have even bothered to point out the obvious selectivity. Obama meant no idling before this particular tyrant, while the UN Security Council offered the beatific state of protected innocence to some Libyans only, not to Syrians, Yemenis, Palestinians or Bahrainis, much less those suffering in the Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe or elsewhere.

Nonetheless the idea of liberal war, of the use of force for humanitarian objectives, continues to cloud opinion and profoundly informs the official terms of debate, in international forums and especially in Western Europe. It also shapes the character of coalition operations over Libya.
Also, check Ross Douthat for a righty's take: The President’s Credibility Gap

Secular forces prepare to confront Islamists in elections

Now's the time to support Liberalism in the Middle East.
Secular groups in Alexandria are rallying to confront predominant Islamist forces in the coastal city ahead of parliamentary elections scheduled for September.

On Thursday, the Wafd Party will host all the secular parties and opposition groups in an effort to establish a coalition and develop strategies for contending with both the Muslim Brotherhood and Salafis.

“We’ve agreed on some major points such as putting aside the ideological differences since we all agree on the secularism of the state, and on not handing the revolution to dogmatic forces. We are thinking of a plan not to have two candidates from the secular bloc in the same constituency so that they don’t compete with each other,” said Rashad Abdel-Al, a Wafd Party spokesman in Alexandria.
Secular forces prepare to confront Islamists in elections

Cham - President laughs on the blood of our martyrs شام - الرئيس يضحك على دماء شهداءنا

Via Reform Party of Syria,
Assad. A Video contrasting Assad joyous day, making jokes, laughing easily, and clapping his hands at the podium of the Syrian Parliament (Talking to Syrian Parrots) against the backgrounds of those who lay dead on Syrian streets. Not for the faint.

Latakya, Syria. March 30, 2011. Demonstratiosn and Insdicriminate Killings

WARNING as the video graphic,


Latakya. (Urgent). Dr. Mounzer Baghdadi (+963-93-347-0029 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +963-93-347-0029 end_of_the_skype_highlighting) is refusing to receive any injured at the National Hospital. Locals believe he is following orders of Assad security men not to treat any injured demonstrator.
Above all via the Reform Party of Syria

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Erich Honecker besoffen

Comrade Honecker a year or two after Comrade Roth came back to Chicago's Third U after a Youth trip to the DDR. Who would have thought all on youtube 35 years later.

Political Jokes of East Germany

Die Partei, Die Partei, Freihiet und Frieden!

Tim Pawlenty on Syria: What the President Should Do | The Weekly Standard

The Pawlenty quote,

I think the President should do the following: Number one, speak strongly and clearly to the people of Syria that we hope and believe and support their drive towards freedom and getting rid of Bashar al-Assad.

Number two, I would recall our ambassador. President Obama made the mistake of sending an ambassador to Syria, legitimizing that country and his regime in ways that I don’t think are appropriate. Recall the ambassador.

Number three, move to invoke further sanctions, both economically and otherwise.

Number four, make sure that people in Syria know where we stand, and that communicate that to the world, and pressure the EU and our allies to do it as
well.
And since I have more Arabic than English readers now, a google tranlation,
أعتقد أن الرئيس يجب القيام بما يلي : رقم واحد، يتكلم بقوة وبوضوح لشعب سوريا التي نأمل ونعتقد ودعم سعيها نحو الحرية والتخلص من بشار الأسد.

عدد اثنين، وأود أن أذكر سفيرنا. أوضح الرئيس أوباما في خطأ ارسال سفير الى سوريا، إضفاء الشرعية على هذا البلد ونظامه في الطرق التي لا أعتقد مناسبة. استدعاء السفير.

رقم ثلاثة، والانتقال إلى استدعاء المزيد من العقوبات، سواء على الصعيد الاقتصادي وعلى خلاف ذلك.

رقم أربعة، تأكد من أن الناس في سورية نعرف أين نقف، والتي تتصل أن للعالم، والضغط على الاتحاد الأوروبي وحلفائنا لتفعل ذلك على النحو
جيدا.

Tim Pawlenty on Syria: What the President Should Do | The Weekly Standard

Obama: "America Has Played Unique Role As An Anchor Of Global Security"

Better learning late than never,
"For generations, the United States of America has played a unique role as an anchor of global security and as an advocate for human freedom. Mindful of the risks and costs of military action, we are naturally reluctant to use force to solve the world's many challenges. But when our interests and values are at stake, we have a responsibility to act," President Obama said in his address on Libya on Monday night.
Obama: "America Has Played Unique Role As An Anchor Of Global Security"

Syrian Rebel Movement حركة الثوار السوري

A new Syrian FaceBook Group.

Arabic to English translation

Kayvara Revolutionary Call Call: Movement Althoaralsori ____ down on Friday to Umayyad Square, some groups will stay in separate areas within the Sham underpinned the correctness Umayyad and also was an agreement with all provinces to join and also with the young Kurds, who are in the areas of Johann, Dirk and Kobani and his column, Aleppo Logically Bmazahry great to achieve our demands, namely: 1_ abolition of the state of emergency in Syria 

2_ abolition of special courts 

3_ independence of the judiciary completely independent 

4_ release all prisoners of conscience 

5_ cancel or likeness of any law criminalizing the person because of what he writes or says (claim to freedom of opinion) 

6_ formation of a permanent judicial Chraeip Commission for the Protection of developmental decisions of the President of the Government and the People's Assembly Estgl laws even one for taking decisions and implementing them in order to serve their interests and not the interests of the people 

7th President of the government be directly elected by the people and the only session on the internal work of development and some overseas and is elected every four years and two terms only, but allows him to extend to the other only if Xi mapped concrete and it was the completion of the currency and allow him to enter the elections in the period after which either President of the Republic he only two to every five years and the cycle is the role of performance monitoring political, economic and diplomatic work with other countries and the Government Accountability 

8_ law legislation liberties and personal touches include the development of each and transactions between people and the powers of other popular sovereignty and the Rear is the first between individuals and be a watchdog on employers sovereign people in their dealings with the people, to equality between him and them 

9_ no choice Syrian armed forces to the five-member People's Assembly to represent them in a military commission shall be entrusted with all things military, the Chairman of the Committee is the ruling military
10_ choose the device policeman to five members to represent the People's Assembly
11_ Council is the people that vote of confidence in the Prime Minister or head of state nor head of state can dissolve parliament never Alavi case of military aggression and the suit is only partially reduce any of its members 

12_ formation of the Parliament of my youth will be under the supervision of the People's Assembly is not subject to any governmental entity and be supervised under the master of its people and the Council is assisting the Government and the People's Assembly in the development of future plans and to discuss problems and solutions are presented for discussion in the corridors of the People's Assembly 

13_ solve the Constitution and the formation of a new constitution in line with the development of the legitimate to the aspiration of young people and taking all Alaattabrat from the experiences of developed countries and taking into account the books Alsmoawip because it is the best constitutions in the ground and in the forefront of the Koran and also all the recommendations, which will be released later as consistent with the aspirations of the future 
 
14 - change in the head Republic: 14 - to resign from formal Bashar al-Assad, 
 
15 - the formation of an investigative committee of independent personalities accountable for crimes committed during the period of peaceful demonstrations (Syrian guerrilla movement) Kayvara Revolutionary - Glory and eternity for the martyrs - Down with the corrupt regime (Bashar al-Assad)

You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby | The Weekly Standard

The only part of the speech I heard was this quote from Kristol's commentary here,
At this point, the United States and the world faced a choice. Gaddafi declared that he would show “no mercy” to his own people. He compared them to rats, and threatened to go door to door to inflict punishment. In the past, we had seen him hang civilians in the streets, and kill over a thousand people in a single day. Now, we saw regime forces on the outskirts of the city. We knew that if we waited one more day, Benghazi – a city nearly the size of Charlotte – could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world.
We're doing the right thing.

You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby | The Weekly Standard

Hawran. March 28, 2011. At least 20 pairs of shoes smearing Assad's poster.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Iranian Rulers, Believing Pre-Messianic Destruction Is Imminent, Make Film To Prepare Muslims

Iranian Rulers, Believing Pre-Messianic Destruction Is Imminent, Make Film To Prepare Muslims

It seems the Iranian Regime's made a film on it for the time is here. Woe for us...

Several months ago, I was informed by my contacts in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard that the Basij had started work on a film that had the approval of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. The purpose of the project: to inform Muslims across the globe of the immediate coming of the last Islamic messiah. As my English translation of the film makes clear (watch it exclusively at PJTV), the Iranian leaders, now more than ever, feel that all the stars are aligned for such event.

Also, Roger Simon's: The Coming, and Why the Left Doesn’t Understand Iran The left's condescension towards Islam as unserious;  that the Iranian Regime really couldn't believe and act on such nonsense.

Mordechai Kedar: Riots in Syria

Via Reform Party of Syria,

RPS Notes: This is one of the most powerful articles written against the Assad regime and it was written by an Israeli Professor in support of the Syrian people. When an Israeli supports Syrians and Assad kills Syrians, RPS stands by those who stand by our people.

ملاحظة الحزب: هذا واحد من أقوى المقالات التي كتبت ضد بشار الأسد من قبل بروفيسور اسرائيلي دعما للشعب السوري. عندما يدعم أسرائيلي الشعب السوري بينما الأسد يقتله فحزب الإصلاح يقف إلى جانب أولئك الذين يقفون إلى جانب شعبنا.

Above the tomb of Hafez al-Assad in the Alawi town of Qardaha is a sign with a verse from the Koran: “Obey Allah, Obey the Messenger and those charged with authority among you.” “Those charged with authority” refers to the acting rulers, even if they do not rule by the grace of Islam. Not for naught was this verse chosen, as it is meant to lend Islamic justification even to a government of infidels. Since 1966, the Syrian regime has been in the hands of the small Alawi minority, considered by Islam to be infidels; its sons are not entitled to rule and, being idol worshippers, according to Islamic canon they do not even have the right to live.

Between 1976 and 1982, Islamic elements attempted to end Alawi rule, but the regime liquidated fifty thousand of them: twenty thousand in the Tadmor prison and another thirty thousand in Hama, which was subjected to heavy bombing that totally destroyed sections of the city. When Romanian President Ceausescu fell in late 1989, graffiti appeared in Syria, “Every Ceausescu has his day”, with every Syrian knowing to whom this referred.

The rise of Bashar al-Assad to power in mid-2000 stirred the hopes of the Syrian people that a modern and educated president, a doctor and internet surfer, would herald a new spring for Syria. Indeed, during the last months of 2000, Syrians were granted permission to organize public gatherings of a political nature. However, the ruling elite, headed by the Intelligence, opposed the loosening of the reins, and Syria sank once again into political oppression.

Following the removal of the presidents of Tunisia and Egypt several weeks ago, Bashar al-Assad announced governmental reforms, began to appear on the streets and at public events and, in early March, even participated (he is a doctor!) in the vaccination of children in a well-children clinic near Damascus. But Syria's citizens do not believe him. They want to remove his corrupt relatives, those who rule public life and the state’s economy and line their pockets with billions while the nation is starving. Syrians are envious of their brothers in Egypt and Tunisia, but are afraid that the regime will behave as Qaddafi is.

It is possible that world reaction to Qaddafi will deter Bashar from perpetrating mass killings against those rising against him, but the delay in world response is liable to cost the lives of many Syrians. The Alawis and their collaborators know that it will be an all-out battle and will react accordingly. The hundreds of casualties of freedom who fell in Syria this week will not be the last. As of this writing, the regime is holding hundreds of youths who demonstrated against it these last few days, in an effort to quell the disturbances.

Illusions of Power

For years, the Syrian propaganda machine claimed that the state is like a melting pot in which all denominations, tribes, ethnic groups and religions become one Syrian nation, united behind the wise leadership of President Hafez al-Assad and his son Bashar. The public, however, never bought into this claim.

The Hauran region in the southwest, near the Golan, was and remains the most backward in Syria: A tribal society; high unemployment; drought that has impoverished villages; poverty; strong feelings of marginalization. The term “Haurani” is commonly used as an insult in Syria.

The Kurds in the north are full of grievances: They comprise a tenth of the population, but most have no citizenship, legal standing or medical care; their language is not recognized; their culture is oppressed. Their capital, Qamishli, was always the focal point of tension with the Arab majority.

The organizers of the protests in Syria called Friday, March 18, “The Day of Dignity” in order to symbolize the end of the humiliation they suffer at the hands of the tyrannical regime of the Assad and Makhlouf families. On that Friday there were demonstrations in many Syrian cities, but by Saturday and Sunday, the uprising persisted mainly in the regional capital of Hauran, Dar’a. During the week, the disturbances spread to other cities in the Hauran, and even in Damascus several dozen people felt that fear of the regime was vanishing.

Manifestations of Western determination in Libya place Assad in a trap. If he allows protests to continue, they will intensify as in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen; if he acts firmly against them, as did his father in Hamat, his fate is liable to mirror Qaddafi's. In an unprecedented move, Assad contacted Daran dignitaries, apologized for the killing of protesters and asked them to dampen the flames of revolt. According to the Syrian code of conduct, the president abased himself with this contact, which leaves the people to decide: To throw him to the dogs or accept his apology for the killings. In either case, his situation is bad. The Syrian melting pot is becoming inflamed, uniting the people against the president.

A History of Slaughter

A reminder of forgotten events: In February 1982, a division of Rifaat al-Asad’s “Defense Companies” eradicated entire sections of the city of Hamat, and its artillery mercilessly killed about thirty thousand men, women, children and elderly – all Syrian citizens. The regime had banished all journalists and it took a month until initial reports of the slaughter leaked to the world.

Today, the southern city of Dar’a, on the Jordanian border, has been raging for a week – a week in which about hundred residents have been killed by police fire, hundreds have been wounded and many others arrested. But photographs, video clips and news of what is transpiring are reaching the internet in almost real time, despite the regime having shut down the cellular network and internet service in the city.

How? One possibility is to travel towards Jordan with the telephone that photographed the events and, using the Jordanian network, send the clip to YouTube. Another method is to bypass the Syrian service provider, which censors the internet, and connect to a satellite network or use proxy websites. As modern technology now enables Syrians to report government atrocities in real time, significantly fewer people are being killed now than in 1982, for the Syrian regime is afraid that if films of mass killings are made public, European countries will do to Syria what they are doing to Qaddafi – if only to settle their score regarding the Hariri murder, support of Iran and arms-smuggling to Hezbollah.

The official Syrian media report that “hooligans” are wreaking havoc in Dar’a, torching government offices and damaging public property. But everyone in Syria understands clearly the meaning of “havoc”; with protestors in Tunisia and Egypt successfully ousting the presidents in those countries, the challenge facing the Syria regime is its greatest since the Ba’th takeover in March 1963.

An Illegitimate State

Ever since France created Syria as an artificial state lacking public legitimacy, the country has been divided along various lines – religious (Moslems, Christians, Druze, Alawis), ethnic (Arabs, Kurds, Armenians), denominational (Sunnis, Shi’ites, Christian sects) and tribal. The government has invested substantial efforts in developing a national awareness which would unite all groups under one umbrella and create a new focal point for the loyalty of its citizens.

The media and the educational system, both under governmental control, were the main vehicles used to promote the new nationalism. Since Hafez al-Asad seized power in November 1970, the Syrian media have toiled day and night to crown him with glory in order to create a public atmosphere of adulation, acceptance and legitimacy. Even today, Hafez al-Asad's statues adorn hundreds of public squares throughout Syria. Nevertheless, the more effort exerted by the government propaganda machine, the greater the disbelief of the populace.

The Alawis, to whom President Asad belongs, are perceived as infidels and idol worshippers. Thus, they not only have no right to rule, but their right to live is strongly questioned by Islamic law, which offers idol worshippers a choice between conversion and slaughter. This attitude was reflected in its full severity between 1976 and 1982, when the Muslim Brotherhood tried to remove the president, who, in a typical Middle Eastern response, ruthlessly massacred them. Syria has been relatively quiet since then, but it is a quiet born of fear, not of agreement.

The state is perceived by most of its citizens as a mechanism of oppression designed to allow a cruel and corrupt group, one that mobilizes the support of family heads by distributing economic monopolies that create “fat cats” who gobble up public money, to impose its rule over twenty million people. This corruption at the top reduces the state’s ability to invest in job creation; lacking infrastructure, Syria has not been part of the wave of economic modernization that is engulfing many developing countries. Syria suffers from double-digit rates of unemployment, and in recent years, hundreds of thousands of villagers throughout the country have been forced to abandon their homes and farms and move to the cities to find other sources of income. The public, quite justifiably, blames all its troubles on the regime.

To remain in power, the controlling group employs no fewer than eleven internal security organizations, which also monitor each other so that none of them usurps power. Many citizens have personally experienced the iron hand of these organizations, which instill fear among the people. However, as Arab liberation movements have begun to topple presidents and regimes in recent weeks, cracks in the wall of fear have started to appear in Syria as well.

Social networks are not used extensively due to poverty, government control and censorship of the internet and the intelligence agencies’ supervision of cellular phone traffic. Information about the timing of demonstrations, therefore, spread by word of mouth, but people are not so willing to go into the streets and be exposed as part of the opposition. The fear threshold is still high and not many believe that they are capable of bringing about an end to the corrupt regime through non-violent protests.

Bashar al-Assad was correct in saying a month ago that Syria was not Tunisia or Egypt: He will fight with determination and without sentiment to maintain power, because if he loses, he and his fellow Alawis are liable to be subject to mass slaughter by the Muslim majority. There are rumors that Syria dispatched fighters to help Qaddafi against his enemies, because if he falls, it might have a negative influence on the stability of the Syrian regime.

The young people are composing slogans designed to encourage themselves and humiliate the government. One of them is Asad Lubnan Arnab al-Houran - the lion (maning of “Asad”) who acted bravely against the weak in Lebanon has become a rabbit when facing the heroes of Hauran. Even if the process will take time and cost lives, it seems that there is great determination among the youth of Syria to overthrow the government, and there are groups prepared to pay for freedom with blood.

And one small question: Has anyone noticed the recent silence in Israel from the choir of “Syrian experts” who, in the last few years, have called day and night for Israel to leave the Golan heights because “everyone knows what the price of peace with Syria is” and “this is the only way to separate Syria from Iran”? What happened to them? They have apparently swallowed their tongues or are still busy eating their hats.

One thing is certain, however: The ayatollahs of Iran and Hassan Nasrallah in Lebanon are very worried about developments in Syria, because if the West gets involved in events there, the treaty between the Iranian and Syrian regimes as well as Syrian aid to Hezbollah may be endangered.

The article is dedicated to the memory of Avraham ben Yitzhak Rosenzweig.

The article is published in the framework of the Center for the Study of Middle East and Islam (under formation), Bar Ilan University, Israel.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Al Jazeera finally finds the revolution in Syria

الأخبار - عربي - جرحى باللاذقية واحتجاجات بدرعا

News - Arabic - wounded in Latakia and protests Daraa

Actress Veena Malik hammers a Mullah

Pretty powerful video of Pakistani actess Veena Malik responding to a Mullah on Pakistani TV.

Bassem Youssef: Egypt's Jon Stewart

Comedy freed!

Bassem Youssef: Egypt's Jon Stewart

Syria: Videos of images of the Dictator Assad tumbling down

هدم تمثال حافظ الاسد في درعا -اطلاق نار من بيت المحافظ



ازالة صورة بشار من ميدان درعا



الثورة السورية ... حمص ... نادي الضباط

More from the Reform Party of Syria -- Many Videos

Bloody Day. This has been one of the bloodiest days since the Revolution started Feb. 4 and picked up steam on March 15. We do not have accurate estimates but it may be up to 100 Syrians in different parts of the country.
Dara'a. A video showing Syrians trying to bring down Hafez al-Assad statute with sticks and bare hands. Fir shots could be heard towards the end. Another video showing people of Dara'a defacing Assad's oversized poster.
Latakiya. Three confirmed dead in Latakiya today in al-Moaasabieyh quarters. Tomorrow's burial will turn violent because the people are armed to their teeth in this coastal city.
Damascus. More reports of a large contingent of families of high ranking officials leaving from Damascus airport today. Unconfirmed. a video of a night demonstration in Douma, suburbs of Damascus.
Homs. A video of the Officers Club in Homs. One can see the anger Syrians hold for Assad.  
Rekkah. In Northeastern Syria, this video shows the demonstration in support of Dara'a and the other cities.
Dubai. A video of a demonstration in support of Syrians today in Dubai.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Syria's Friday of Dignity Becomes a Day of Death

Via Time,

Syria's Friday of Dignity Becomes a Day of Death
The accounts of Syria's "Friday of Dignity" are startling — with episodes full of surprising dissent and immediate repression. In Damascus' famed Umayyad mosque, a confrontation reportedly broke out during the imam's sermon just as the cleric blamed Facebook and foreign meddling for the country's week of unrest. As he cautioned that reforms would take time, the imam was interrupted by a worshipper who started chanting "Freedom! Freedom!" and was soon joined by others. "People began flooding outside, running from thugs," a man who was near the mosque told TIME on condition of anonymity. "People [were] running for their life out of the mosque." Video purportedly shot inside the mosque shows a large crowd of men chanting "Freedom!" and punching their right fists into the air before switching to "With our souls and with our blood, we will sacrifice for you, Dara'a!"
Read more: http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2061452,00.html#ixzz1HeLKNWfN

Pajamas Media » Is Libya Mess the Work of NSC Chief Tom Donilon?

The United States goes to War with the President it has, but NSC Chiefs can get cashiered. Fingers pointing towards Donilon as the first guy overboard.

Pajamas Media » Is Libya Mess the Work of NSC Chief Tom Donilon?

Syria's Assad lets loose Hell

Via Reform Syria
Assad's Killing machine has unleashed its hell. Scores of people have died in Dara'a (We are told hundreds), several killed in Homs and in Deir el-Zour and in Aleppo. 20 killed in As Sanamyn. More people have been killed in Latikiya.

Syrians need the international community to stop this carnage.

Flummoxed Unitarian Universalism

A comment to Joel's excellent post: Anti-war, or merely anti-Republican

Bill Schultz from UUSC is the only prominent UU with National Cred to speak on the revolutions in the Middle East. We've heard nothing from the Standing on the side of Love folks.

The world gets a Liberal Revolution sweeping accross the Mideast and leadership of a great Liberal Tradition are flummoxed.

If that doesn't explain our stagnation, nothing really does. Our minds and spirits have staled.

Only old Republicans and left over Bush Appointees can speak the language of Empowering a Revolution.

Syria should follow Egypt’s lead and the Syrian army should “empower a revolution”, Robert Gates, US secretary of defence, argued as thousands marched in a southern city.

Mr Gates made his comments – some of the toughest remarks to date by a US official about the rule of Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s president – on a day of further upheaval in the Middle East and beyond.

Syria: Aleppo, Idlib, Jablah, Deir el Zour, and.... Berlin

Via RPS,
Aleppo. RPS is receiving news that thousands are rallying in Old Aleppo.
Idlib and Jablah. Demonstrators, in the hundreds, in support of the people of Dara'a, are in the streets. In Idlib, not far from the largest city of Aleppo in the north, RPS is told that the Ba'ath Party HQ has been torched. Jablah is located on the Mediterranean coast North of Banias and south of Latakiya, a stronghold of Assad. With these demonstrations, Syria has recorded rallies for freedom in every direction on its compass

Deir el Zour. Thousands are also demonstrating in the Kurdish stronghold. One chant "He who kills his people is the traitor" referring to Assad killing streets in Dara'a. RPS is receiving reports of violent clashes in Deir El-Zour between Assad's security and the protestors.   
Berlin. Large number of Syrian expatriates are converting upon the Syrian Embassy in Berlin

Damascus Syria

تظاهرات في حمص 25-3-2011.3gp

Homs Syria

Takes some guts to demonstrate in Homs. A city the elder Assad once flatten with the loss of tens of thousands.

تظاهرات في حمص 25-3-2011.3gp

Thursday, March 24, 2011

فيديو يجمع احداث ثورة 15 اذار - فلاش Video brings a revolution March 15 - Flash

SecDef Gates to the Syrian Army: Empower a Revolution

via the FT,
Syria should follow Egypt’s lead and the Syrian army should “empower a revolution”, Robert Gates, US secretary of defence, argued as thousands marched in a southern city.

Mr Gates made his comments – some of the toughest remarks to date by a US official about the rule of Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s president – on a day of further upheaval in the Middle East and beyond.
Drawing a parallel between the unrest in Syria and the protests that unseated Hosni Mubarak, Egypt’s former president, Mr Gates said: “I’ve just come from Egypt, where the Egyptian army stood on the sidelines and allowed people to demonstrate and in fact empowered a revolution. The Syrians might take a lesson from that.”
Let's hope so.

“Disarray.” - Swampland

“Disarray.” - Swampland

Cordesman says the infamous fog of war has drifted far beyond the battlefield. "The problem is not so much mission creep," he says, "but mission confusion."

McCaffrey agrees, and sees evidence of that murkiness in the men in uniform the Administration has been rolling out to detail the war plan. "The Administration put (Adm. Mike) Mullen and (Army Gen.) Carter Ham, with a bad haircut, on TV, while Gates, Biden, Hillary Clinton and the President of the United States stayed out of sight," fumes McCaffrey. "How dare they go off, all of them, and disappear, and leave two hapless four-stars to explain what's going on in Libya."

Hapless four stars? That's a first.

Dara'a Syria: The Real Test is Tomorrow

Again, via RPS,

Dara'a. Thousands of mourners have buried today those who were massacred at the hands of the Syrian security yesterday. Some estimates place the number of dead at between 100-150 but no independent source has been able to verify the numbers or the names yet. Many Syrians believe that yesterday's carnage is a sign the world is turning a deaf ear to their plight.

The Real Test. Assad could not afford Friday March 25 to be a national day of demonstrations. He massacred enough Syrians in Dara'a in the hope it will dissuade Syrians elsewhere. The real test is tomorrow after Friday prayers. So far, no Arab TV network has spoken of the carnage so most Syrians do not know about it. But they cannot ignore it. If Syria rises after what it witnessed, Assad will have a hard time just keep killing at will. But if Syrians stay home, Assad would have won the first battle, but not the war. 

An Important Statistic. Syria is 30% minorities and 70% Sunnis. Of the 70% Sunnis, 50% are Sufi Sunni (Sufism is peaceful and separates state from religion). Under the worst of scenarios, 35% of Sunnis can be fundamentalists (Worst case but not the likely case). In a real Syrian Federal democracy, with a strong army controlled by an amalgamation of minorities, like the Alawites, and moderate Sunnis, this worst case scenario is not a threat to Syria or any of its neighbors. If the MB wants to practice Sharia, they can all live in the Province that chooses Sharia as its laws. Syrians have a plan but the world is not listening.

Arab TV Networks. Most have been mum about the latest events in Dara'a. This conspiracy will come back to haunt the rulers of Qatar and Saudi Arabia. BBC Arabic has had the best coverage so far. RPS is working on some statistical analysis to share.  

Dara'a Syria

Via RFS again,


Dara'a. There are reports that over 100 peaceful demonstrators have been killed in Dara'a on Wednesday, with many more injured. Dara'a hospital is not equipped to handle this number of injured. Power has been cut-off from the city, which is endangering the lives of the injured. No shipments of food are allowed and water conditions are deteriorating fast. With 100,000 people in the city, diseases will break out soon if the international community and the Red Cross do not come to its aid. Not one word on the Washington Post website about the killing streets in Dara'a. 
 
UAE. a Video of Syrians demonstrating in Dubai in support of Syrians at home. 

Global Presence. With some 16 million Syrians in the Diaspora, many are shocked by the videos they have been witnessing of Assad's savagery. Many have started planning their own rallies in western capitals in support of Syrians at home. 

State Department. The only words offered by the US State Department as of yesterday is "Restrain" and then an excuse and justification of why the US sent its Ambassador to Syria. As if the he has stopped Assad from killing. Clearly, there is a shift in policy on Syria against its people.

Syrians are on the Move via Reform Party of Syria

More video from Reform Party of Syria,
Dara'a. A video showing how the Syrian army was received by the people. And another video showing how the security men of Assad are running like wild animals aiming and shooting at demonstrators.

درعا الكراج - سوريا - اطلاق نار بوحشية على المتظاهرين

\

شام - درعا1 - هكذا استقبل الاهالي الجيش 22-3-2011

Dara - the funeral of Dr. Mahamed and child smile 23-3 درعا - جنازة الدكتور المحاميد و الطفلة ابتسام 23-3

Via Reform Party of Syria,
A video of the burial of the six Syrians killed in Dara'a last night when attacked by commandoes of the Assad regime. One is a doctor and a baby girl named Ibtissam. One can hear some first shout "No G*d but one G*d" that quickly changes to a collective "With our soul, with our blood, we will redeem our martyrs".

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

الثورة السورية... بطلجية النظام وهتك حرمة المسجد الاموي

Syrian Revolution ... HTC Btlchip system and the sanctity of the Umayyad Mosque

لثورة السورية.. بلطجية النظام وكذبهم واعتقلات عشوائية

Of the Syrian revolt .. Thugs system and lies and a random Atqlat

شام - درعا - 1 - سنكشف الحقيقة تباعا 23-3-2011 The Syrian Revolution 2011-3-23

This must be Dara'a...google translation is The fulfillment of the blood of the martyrs - will not forget you

WARNING  these are EXTREMELY graphic






And this one from the 18th,

Yemen’s Youth Coordinating Council writes President Obama

via Armies of Liberation,


The letter is also available on scribd and was sent to the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, and the President of the European Union, John Bruton as well as President Obama.

17 March 2011

To: His Excellency Barak H. Obama, President of the United States of America

From: The Proud Youth of Yemen Fighting for Freedom, Liberty and the Pursuit of
Happiness

Sub: The Ongoing Bloodshed in Yemen Against the Youth of Change Instigated by the
Autocratic Regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh, His Kin and their Hired Thugs

Dear Excellency:

We implore you and the American people to look at Yemen with the eyes of a people, who share with the people of Yemen a common love for freedom, liberty and human rights and with a strong belief that the proponents of tyranny, repression and dictatorships have no place in a world created by God, Al-Mighty in which all men can live free and with dignity. We believe very strongly that you have a high regard for those people, who stand ready to give their lives so that their people can be free. We are also certain that had you been given a clearer picture of what the proud and peace loving Youth of Yemen are being subjected to by
the various official and covert organs of tyranny, authoritarian rule and repression that Ali Abdullah Saleh, the long standing President of the Republic of Yemen, albeit against the will of the Yemeni people, is using against peaceful protestors of Yemen throughout the country, you would not hesitate one moment to strive diligently to put an end to the ongoing massacre of the freedom loving youth in the streets of Sana’a, Aden, Ta’ez, Mukalla, Sa’ada, Ibb and every nook and cranny of the Republic of Yemen. We do not have any doubt that such bloodletting by the murdering thugs of Ali Abdullah Saleh could ever be agreeable to Your Excellency. On the contrary, please allow us to state in sincerity that your ascent to the Presidency of the United States was an inspirational stimulant for all lovers of freedom, not just in Yemen, but in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya as well, to struggle to bring an end to the awesome oppression, to which the people of these countries were being subjected for decades by their respective dictators and their lynch men.

In the Yemeni context, please note that the regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh has over the past thirty – three years transformed the once free and independent revolutionary government of Yemen to a bloodthirsty oppressive dictatorship that killed the free and independent republic that Yemen represented before Ali Abdullah forcefully took over the reins of authority by the nozzles of tanks under his command a third of a century ago. Yes, Mr. President, the dictatorship of the Saleh regime had then taken over the proud achievement of thousands of our parents and ancestors, who struggled for generations to bring freedom and prosperity to
their people and to take Yemen out of the Dark Ages from successive tyrannical dynastic rule and imperialism to the Third Millennium.


You may come to wonder, who are we? What do we stand for? Finally, what are we striving for? In this letter, we hope to answer all these understandable questions with as much brevity and clarity as required to assure Your Excellency and the American people that we are a genuine peaceful democratic movement that represents a cross section of all the population of Yemen, regionally, ethnically, socially, economically and politically. We are not after any political ambitions. Simply put we represent the millions of Yemenis, North and South, East and West who see no recourse for Yemen except to bring about an immediate significant
change in Government topped off by the removal of the regime that has kept Ali Abudullah Saleh the uncontested ruler of Yemen for close to three and a half decades. Almost from the outset of our democratic protest, it became apparent that the Saleh regime is very fragile and has no structural and institutional basis for sustainability. You are of course aware that the Saleh regime is gradually collapsing and falling apart. Many of its very own icons are now leaving the regime and its official and partisan apparatus. This clearly indicates that the regime has not only lost the respect of the Yemeni people, en amsse, but even that of its very own senior officials and party management, who were regarded as icons of the regime.

The very civilized protest you and the world are seeing unfold in Yemen is not a fly by night effort that is like the gathering of the so called “loyalists” of the regime that are shepherded from time to time by the security organs of the oppressive Saleh regime and then illegitimately paid for at the expense of the public funds owned by the people of Yemen. We are the loud voice of a silent majority of millions of Yemenis, who have taken to the street and which you are seeing daily holding our grounds in several protest vigils camped throughout the cities, towns and habitats of Yemen all of whom are yearning for freedom, justice and political and civic rights. As you can see our movement is made of every facit of Yemeni society: old, young, rich, poor, middle class, tribal, cosmopolitan and rural, all calling for the very same thing you called for when you undertook the quest for the Presidency of the United States: CHANGE. Our demands are legitimate, genuine and attainable as long as our Yemeni people continue to gather with us from all walks of life and demanding that they be counted among those who are completely fed up with the status quo and the daunting aura of subjugation under which they have been forced to live under all for two generations of the proud and freedom loving people of Yemen.

Your Excellency, do not be fooled by the fabricated image of Saleh and his clique as your best bets against terrorism. It is Saleh, who brought terrorism into Yemen, from the very early days of the Saleh regime. He funded the various manifestations of the terrorist organs over the last three decades, including the Al-Qaeda genre and he made Yemen a literal training camp for recruits of terrorist organizations and the staging point for many monumental terrorist acts. These mind you, include the Attack on the US Navy destroyer, the USS Cole. Do not be fooled by the fake scenarios of “terrorist” activity that are displayed by the regime to give credence to their stance against terrorism. Even if such acts are directed against minor offices of the regime or low level officers, Saleh and his terrorist mentors operate by the cardinal rule of all terror minded organizations: “the ends justify the means”. We can give you a long list of terrorist activities, which may be labeled as “official terrorism”, much of which are disguised by covert or clandestine organs of the regime and
funded by the Yemeni State Treasury and sometimes deceived foreign states. We suffice with bringing to your attention that the Saleh regime has turned the South of the country into a torture chamber of our fellow Yemenis in Aden, Abyan, Hadhramaut, Shabwa, etc, because the people of the southern part of the country were protesting the undue deprivation suffered by our southern fellow Yemenis of their rights and the hoarding of the assets and resources of the South by the members of the Saleh family and their cheap cronies, who have betrayed their fellow countrymen and worked to safeguard and implant the repression of the regime
throughout the Republic of Yemen. Then there was the costly Sa’ada War, which was no more than a lucrative business enterprise for war merchants and warlords who are cardinal element of the Saleh regime, whether as senior officials within the regime, or as indirect stakeholders along with the informal mafia of corrupt mobsters that are part and parcel of the Saleh regime. In addition to the thousands of death, wounded and disabled that attest horribly to the horrendous thirst for blood the Saleh regime thrives on, the Six Wars of Sa’ada have also rendered 400,000 of our fellow Yemenis in Sa’ada, Amran and other northern governorates displaced and indefinitely homeless, many of who now are living without the least requirements for subsistence, let alone for dignified lives.

Mr. President, those were some of the past great achievements of the Saleh regime, many of which are still ongoing escapades of the dreaded Saleh regime. However, you should also be made aware that all these wars and violent adventures of our President and his cronies, who thrive on conflict, have brought government in Yemen to a standstill. The Government of Yemen has not undertaken and is not undertaking any of the meaningful tasks expected of Government, in terms of providing services to the Yemeni people and distributing development throughout the country. On the contrary the Saleh regime has killed the development achievements that were realized in the earlier days of post revolutionary Yemen, including the very effective and democratic Cooperative Development Movement and also killed the sound governance applications that prevailed in the southern governorates, before the totalitarianism and corruption of the Saleh regime in the North was made the rule,
rather than the exception throughout Yemen after unification. The horrendous corruption of the Saleh regime has allowed nepotism and favoritism to prevail over equal opportunity and equal access to the resources of the country, thus concentrating all wealth and income within less than 1% of the population and sending more than half of the population of Yemen to poverty and subsistence below the poverty line of US $ 2 a day.

To further enlighten Your Excellency, please allow us to clarify some aspects of the current situation, to give you an indication of the obvious hopelessness of achieving any meaningful results with continued dialogue with the regime, as your Administration strongly and perhaps unknowingly now calls for. First of all, as the Youth Movement for Change in Yemen, we are the most astute champions of peace and would love nothing more than to pursue our quests for freedom and human and civil rights through peaceful means. Therefore, had we seen any sincerity in the deceiving gestures of the President for “dialogue”, we would not have hesitated one moment to engage the regime in meaningful discussions to map a proper future for Yemen. But, please allow us to tell you that for thirty-three years, genuine political leaders and civic personalities, as well as civil society organizations have sat with Saleh and many of his representatives and reached what were even then regarded as historic agreements. These accords were praised by not only most Yemenis, but throughout the world as exemplary solutions to unresolved complicated political and social issues. Yet these agreements, from the Unification Agreement (1989 – 1990) to the Pact of Agreement and Accord (1994) and the countless talks held between the regime and opposition forces, since the dreaded War of 1994, which was planned and executed not so much to safeguard the unity of Yemen, but really to give the Saleh regime uncontested control of authority and resources throughout Yemen, were thrown out the window. Had the regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh been sincere in engaging in dialogue throughout the many negotiations held with the
regime throughout all these years, all these costly and bloody conflicts waged by the regime against its very own subjects would not have flared up. In fact, the Yemeni people have come to recognize over and over again that the Saleh regime engages in dialogue to buy time while the repressive organs of the regime and informal thugs do their homework to eventually suppress the very elements Saleh was supposedly having a dialogue with.

The Obama Administration should seek to come to grips with the tragic reality that the Saleh regime is no longer acceptable to the Yemeni people. The fact that our parents and families have, for the first time became willing to sacrifice their children’s and family providers’ lives and physical well being in an inequitable confrontation with the tyrannical regime of Ali Abdullah Saleh is testimony to the overall contention now held by all the Yemeni people that there is not one grain of hope that can be exacted from this regime and that it is really about time in Yemen that the will of the people shall prevail above all narrow minded interests and the selfish enterprises of the Saleh regime.

Surely, the freedom loving American people can see the justice of our struggle and the cause we stand for, and the President of the United States, can understand that all that the millions of Youth of Change throughout Yemen are asking of this world is to acknowledge that the blood of hundreds of fatalities and thousands of wounded now indiscriminately being spilt by the most inhumane tools of repression used against armless peaceful protests should not have gone in vain.

What do the Youth of Yemen stand for?

Mr. President, after having shown you our genuine sincere aspirations in general, please allow us to highlight some of the practical ramifications of our peaceful protest, which are merely a tentative proposal to be finally agreed to by all serious minded factions in Yemen’s socio-economic-political framework. I am sure you will agree that these are indeed pragmatic, feasible and altogether not difficult to attain, with a little bit of hard work and serious effort of all concerned, God willing:

1) The immediate removal of Ali Abdullah Saleh from the Presidency of the Republic of Yemen, a post he has held continuously for the past thirty three years.
2) The dismissal of all the members of the Al-Ahmar family (Ali Abdullah Saleh and his immediate brothers, offspring, nephews, cousins, in-laws, and close kin) from all positions of military and security command and senior civil administrative positions, with immediate effect.
3) The designation of a Temporary Council to act as a Provisional Government to carry on the day to day functions of Government pending:

a) The drafting of a new Constitution for the Republic of Yemen, to incorporate some of the positive elements of many of the past documents of previous dialogues, and more importantly to include an enforceable balance of authority and separation of powers between the executive, legislative and judicial branches of Government. This can be done by a panel of knowledgeable experts chosen by all the legitimate political factions, individuals and civil society organizations, who are known for their sincerity and national patriotism. The panel shall have an agreed upon deadline not to exceed six months. The Constitution is to be put to a national referendum, including Yemenis overseas to be overseen by selected members of the Youth Movement and the serious factions in the Yemeni political arena that have demonstrated a sincere desire for political and social reforms that answer to the desires and aspirations of the Yemeni people.

b) The issuance of an Elections Law that takes in all the elements of democratic practice and conduct set out in the drafted Constitution

c) The follow – up and retrieval of all the public funds and assets acquired by the President, his kin and all the cronies that worked diligently to safeguard the longevity of the Saleh regime, or to impose the agenda of the regime by official or covert means and with possession of demonstrated net worth that was obtained by
extraordinary means. This includes local assets and foreign assets in their names or under disguised names of relatives or corporate entities.

d) The arrangement of Parliamentary, Local Council and Presidential Elections to be held freely and in stages as arranged herein, to ensure that the Executive Branch shall not have the ability to influence the elections of the other centers of authority. There should be a 2 month interval between each election. The Provisional Government shall consist of an agreed number of say (this is temporary of course subject to later agreement)12 people known for their honesty, integrity and patriotism as well as expertise and experience. The Twelve members shall be divided into three Four Task Teams, as follows:

a) Three to be responsible for supervising the drafting of: i) the Constitution by a Special Constitutional Panel (details to be worked out later); and ii) the Temporary Elections Law, which should also map out the selection of voting districts in a fair and equitable manner also by a special panel of law and elections experts.

b) Three to oversee the follow up on all public assets funneled illegally and fraudulently transferred to members of the Saleh Family and their close of kin and cronies . They should be assisted by a team of expert lawyers, from the domestic and the international sphere.

c) Three to oversee the overhaul of the military and security organs to institutions that are tightly controlled and operate under civilian command of a Minister of Defense and close oversight eventually by a Parliamentary Committee that will have power over deciding on appointments of leading military command
positions, supervision of budget allocations for the military and security. While it is noted that security is to be under the guidance of a national security policy, with respect to issues of national or home security, eventually there should be a transfer of local security to local police units (under local government authority) geared for fighting crime and maintaining civil order under strict constitutional guidelines that protect human rights and ensure that security organs do not serve political ends beyond certain aspects of national security and safeguarding sovereignty.

d) Three to oversee the day to day operations of Government until a new Government is put in place, even if a temporary Government is designated under their supervision based on streamlined functional roles (Defense, Health, Civil  Service, Development, etc.). Members can be from existing known ministers for
their integrity and professional acumen.

Each of the task teams outlined above is to be headed by a Chairman elected by the three members of Each Task Team and these Chairmen will elect one of them to become the provisional Head of the Provisional Council and act as the provisional defacto Head of State until the Election of a President.

There is also the possibility that the Constitution will insist on a Parliamentary form of Government, in which case a President may be elected to take on ceremonial and functional roles as the Head of State, but with controlled limited Executive powers.

4) The transfer of authority from the Provisional Council to the Functioning Elected Government (under a President or a Prime Minister) after all the steps above have been completed.

So, you see Mr. President, what we, the Youth of Yemen are calling for are not sensational demands that are the result of spontaneous and sentimental urges, but real concrete pragmatic steps and procedures that will truly bring a genuine and meaningful transformation to good governance and the rule of law, which will have, foremost of all, the best interests of the Yemeni people at large, under clearly laid out guaranteed rights and duties that translate into justice and equality of all citizens and afford equal opportunity to all citizens as should be expected within the social contract.

This is our preliminary perspective of how we expect the modus operandi of change and reforms to be instituted. Surely this is going to be with a view towards achieving consensus among all political stakeholders and the tacit approval of the Yemeni people at large of such steps, with the positive support of the international community, to be solicited and acknowledged without fail. We are of course prepared to discuss other alternative procedures, but the key is to ensure that all the objectives of our just and legitimate struggle are realized, with effect sooner than later.

We look forward to the recognition of the people of the United States of our universally recognized right of peaceful protest and to the acknowledgment by your Honorable Administration of the legitimacy and righteousness of our sincere aspirations for the Yemeni people. We also look forward to your personal efforts by all endeavors to put an end to the ongoing bloodbath being unleashed by Ali Abdullah Saleh, his relatives and their hired thugs against the only hope left for a free and democratic Yemen, namely its brave and steadfast freedom loving youth from Sa’ada to Al-Mahara.

May God bless the people of the United States and the people of Yemen.

Respectfully yours,

The Youth of Peaceful and Democratic Change in Yemen

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

More Syrians on the move

More from Reform Party of Syria,
Security Men. All holidays, leave of absence, and sick leaves have been forbidden. We are told of men sleeping in detention centers, fatigued, and operating under high pressure.
Dara'a. MP Khalid al-Aboud, representing Dara'a, made a fool of himself when he appeared on al-Jazeera and claimed that foreign infiltrators are behind the uprising. Asked for a proof, he said that the people are using words like FREEDOM. Even the al-Jazeera anchorwoman could not believe her ears.
Intelligence. The Military Intelligence officer responsible for the Dara'a region is none other than Zuelhelma Shalish. After the Dara'a fiasco detaining children, our sources told us that he has been relieved of his duties. Considering he is Assad's cousin, his face and incompetence will reappear soon. RPS hopes he becomes Assad's financial advisor. 

Syrians are on the Move

A Press release via the Reform Party of Syria,
Dara'a. A video of another Syrian killed today in Dara'a. No names yet.
Women of Syria. Several prisoners who have been arrested lately in Damascus are on hunger strike, including Ms. Suhair Atassi. Ms. Atassi has become the symbol of this revolution with her courage and determination. Another, Ms. Herven Ossi was transported to the hospital today suffering from malnutrition. There are unconfirmed reports surfacing that even on hunger strike, they have been subjected to cruel treatment and in some cases beatings by the Assad thugs. Today, Ms. Mountaha Bacha al-Atrash was arrested after appearing on BBC to decry the regime's violence against its own people in her capacity as the head of a Syrian Human Rights organization. She is the youngest daughter of Sultan Bacha al-Atrash, a Druze hero who fought the French and the Ottomans.
Member of Parliament. The Assad regime arrested Sheikh Soufok Faisal al-Nojrous, a member of the parliament, for standing by the people of Dara'a. Sheikh Nojrous happens to be an important member of the largest of tribes, the Oukaidat tribe, known for their combative and fierce nature. Our bet is on Oukeidat if its people rise.
Aleppo. Underage young men arrested and tortured for standing by the people of Dara'a. They are: Mosab Sheikh Ameen (14 yrs), Abdullah Ameen (17 yrs), Saleh Abu Galon (18yrs), Rafeh Abu Galon (16yrs). Mosab's mother saw him full of blood, even in his underpants. THEIR PARENTS ASKED TO SPEAK TO ANY ARAB TV NETWORK.
UN Human Rights. The Commission in Geneva asked the Assad regime to investigate the killings in Dara'a with transparency and independence. Might as well ask a Frenchman not to drink wine.
Facebook and Twitter. The Syrian security is forcing all the detainees to divulge the id's and passwords to their Facebook and Twitter accounts to control to whom and what they sent. This will expand their gauntlet to include thousands more of young Syrians who may be at risk of being arrested.
   

White House national security council spokesman Tommy Vietor on Syria's violence against demonstrators

I found this first on the BBC's Arabic language service. Pretty good for a guy using google translate. Shows how MSM can't keep up following the USG on the Arab Revolution. It's the first administration comment I've seen on Syria.
At least three protesters have been shot dead in the south Syrian city of Deraa as security forces clamped down on a protest rally.

They were killed by security forces as protesters demanded political freedom and an end to corruption, eyewitnesses and activists told foreign media.

President Bashar al-Assad, whose Baath party has dominated politics for nearly 50 years, tolerates no dissent.

Washington strongly condemned the use of force against demonstrators.

White House national security council spokesman Tommy Vietor said the US was calling on the Syrian government to "allow demonstrations to take place peacefully".

"Those responsible for today's violence must be held accountable," he added.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said the "use of lethal force against peaceful demonstrators and their arbitrary arrests" were "unacceptable", according to a spokesman.

"It is the responsibility of the government in Syria to listen to the legitimate aspirations of the people and address them through inclusive political dialogue and genuine reforms, not repression," he added.

Mona Charen: Never Mind

Read the whole thing, but here's where Charen nails it. Farrahkan got it too sort of, who's Obama think he is?
How has Obama concluded that a war against another Middle East villain is now justified and not "dumb" or "rash"? And on what principle can President Obama now decline to intervene on behalf of other freedom fighters around the globe?

We don't know, because unlike George Bush, who took his case for war to the American people through a vote in the United States Congress (with 110 Democrats voting in favor), President Obama has acted unilaterally -- putting our forces into harm's way based solely on his power as commander in chief. (Code Pink -- call your office!) If he is relying upon the vote in the United Nations as his mandate for military action, he is establishing a new principle of diminished U.S. sovereignty. American forces can now be ordered into action by the president and the U.N. but without the U.S. Congress?

On most of the foreign and security policy issues he preened himself about -- the folly of deposing despots, closing the prison at Guantanamo, using military tribunals to try terrorists, and withdrawing from Iraq, President Obama has reversed himself.

He has performed these reversals without explanation and without apology for his shrill condemnation of his predecessor. He condemned Bush's "ideology," but his own foreign policy seems to have amounted to marketing the image of himself as the first African-American president and the first Muslim-sympathetic president. Image-making is easier than policymaking -- and when it came time for decisions, President Obama dissolved into incoherence.

أحداث 18 أذار | قلب سيارة للمخابرات الجوية 1

Events of 18 March | the heart of a car air intelligence

مظاهرة في المعضمية دمشق اليوم 21 اذار- دمشق small demonstration in Mahdamieyeh on the outskirts of Damascus.

More via Reform Party of Syria
Damascus. A video of a small demonstration in Mahdamieyeh on the outskirts of Damascus. Notice how some watchers join the demonstrators.

March 22 | Thousands protest in front of the station Alsnumein 22 أذار| ألألاف يتظاهرون في مدينة الصنمين أمام المخفر

Syrians are on the Move via Reform Party of Syria

Monday, March 21, 2011

Sunday, March 20, 2011

MEMRI: Yemeni Comedian Adre'i Sings Rap Song about the Revolution, the Masses Chant: "The People Wants to Topple the Regime"

MEMRI: Yemeni Comedian Adre'i Sings Rap Song about the Revolution, the Masses Chant: "The People Wants to Topple the Regime"

AlJazeeraEnglish: Exclusive footage of Shahbaz Bhatti's interview

بداية حرية -The conception of Freedom

English subtitles...well worth watching.

Cham - Dara four demonstrations morning 20-3-2011 شام - درعا 4 مظاهرات صباح 20-3-201

More video from Syria...

Cham - Damascus - Plainclothes security assaulted a protester Syria

Syria's involved in Libya too

...so President Obama really ought to be laying out the whole strategy of the United States response to the Arab and Persian revolutions, and what's our response when we shoot down our first Syrian. Read Syrian pilots said to be flying Libyan fighter jets

Qaddafi, Farrahkan, and Rev Wright's snowball in hell

Farrahkan with WVON's Cliff Kelly raking Obama over Farrahklan's bud Qaddafi.



Talk heated enough to melt Rev Wright's snowball before Wright's "Jewish support" even bails,

Jeremiah Wright, former pastor of Obama’s longtime Chicago church, went with Farrakhan to visit Gaddafi in 1984.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Wright himself noted the trip could cause problems for Obama.

“When [Obama’s] enemies find out that in 1984 I went to Tripoli to visit [Gaddafi] with Farrakhan, a lot of his Jewish support will dry up quicker than a snowball in hell,” Wright said.


The Qaddafi handouts the only think drying up today guys.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Roger L. Simon » Jets over Libya as H. Clinton Assumes Presidency

I hope this administration knows what it's doing. Roger Simon's take,

Roger L. Simon » Jets over Libya as H. Clinton Assumes Presidency

Cato: Libya: War Without Policy

I'm an instrumentalist on this one but the President in Rio when he should be going to Congress to answer questions like these from Cato deeply troubling if you have any respect for the US Constitution. (And why is Obama in Rio and not the WAR summit in Paris tomorrow?
The vagueness on policy goals may be the price of gaining international consensus. Plans and tactics may clarify at tomorrow's war summit in Paris. If they do not, our leaders will be guilty of military malpractice. Maybe that will not matter because Qaddafi's regime will simply capitulate. But without goals that match our tactics, the intervention in Libya is likely to fail.

Besides exercising the constitutional war powers that no longer interest it, our Congress, along with European parliaments, ought to demand answers to several questions on policy toward Libya, such as:

1. What is our goal in Libya? What happens if the allies disagree on goals?
2. Are we planning to enforce a no-fly zone, bomb military units that are attacking civilian targets, or provide the rebels with close air support and strategic bombing? Will we send in special operators to help target air strikes?
3. If we manage to stop, by force or its threat, Qaddafi's forces from taking Benghazi and the rest of the rebel stronghold in Libya's east, are we prepared to indefinitely enforce the de facto partition of Libya?
4. Would we offer air support for a rebel offensive?
5. If Qaddafi consolidates his gains before or despite allied efforts to stop him, should we try to overthrow him? If so, how? What if he doesn't kill many civilians?
6. If the rebels win and ask for a peacekeeping force while they form a new government, do we provide it?
7. If the rebels attack civilians, do we attack them?


الصور عن مظاهرات اليوم في درعا 19-3-2011 في المسجد العمريPictures of the demonstrations today in the shield in the Mosque of Omar 03/19/2011

Horan, Syria

Friday Massacre in Sanaa, updates, links: Saleh declares state of emergency

Coverage for the Friday Massacre from Jane Novack's Armies of Liberation here.

Warning the video is pretty graphic.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Kerry, McCain and Lieberman Urge Swift Action on Libya

Their joint statement via The Weekly Standard,
WASHINGTON, DC- Following passage of a United Nations Security Council resolution authorizing a no-fly zone and other action in Libya, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-MA), along with Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT), issued the following joint statement:

“We applaud tonight’s action by the UN Security Council authorizing ‘all necessary measures’ to impose a no-fly zone in Libya and protect civilians and civilian-populated areas under threat of attack. The Administration deserves credit for getting this Resolution passed with such strong support. This was an important step on behalf of the people of Libya, but it will only be as effective as its implementation. With Qaddafi’s forces moving towards Benghazi, we must immediately work with our friends in the Arab League and in NATO to enforce this resolution and turn the tide before it is too late. We must also build a bipartisan consensus here at home to support the President in taking the swift and decisive measures necessary to stop Qaddafi.”

Union thuggery against Althouse and Meade: "We will hang up wanted posters of you everywhere you like to go."

What a jolly bunch,
"We will picket on public property as close to your house as we can every day. We will harrass the ever loving shit out of you all the time. Campus is OCCUPIED. State street is OCCUPIED. The Square is OCCUPIED. Vilas, Schenk's Corners, Atwood, Willy Street – Occupied, Occupied, Occupied, Occupied. Did you really think it was all about the Capitol? Fuck the Capitol, we are the CITY... We have the numbers and we don't back down from anyone. We all know each other. We all know each other. We know each other from Service Industry Night at the Orpheum, because we're regulars at the same coffee shops, restaurants and bars, we know each other from the co-ops, we know each other because we've had a million jobs each (and we all worked at CapTel at least once), because we live in every shitty townie house in ever-changing groups of 2 – 7 people, because we are young and horny and screw each other incessantly, because we're all on facebook, and because we aren't anti-social, life-denying, world-sterilizing pieces of human garbage like the two of you. WE WILL FUCK YOU UP. We will throw our baseballs in your lawn, you cranky old pieces of shit, and then we will come get them back. What are you gonna do? Shoot us? Get Wausau Tea Patriots to form an ad hoc militia on your front lawn? That would be fucking HILAROUS to us. You could get to know the assholes on your side in real fucking life instead of sponging off the civil society we provide for you every single day you draw breath."