Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Not So AAA!

U.S. and European attitude towards the Syrian Revolution leave much to be desired, so perhaps, it is about time Syrian activists and dissidents stopped desiring much from the U.S. and Europe. 

Tuesday August 2, 2011

24 dead on Monday (including 3 in Albou Kamal, 5 in Hama, 2 in Lattakia, 1 in Sermeen in the Idlib province, 3 in Homs City, 1 in the Damascene suburb of Zabadani, and 6 in the Damascene suburb of Arbeen) ... On Tuesday, 12 people died in all, including 5 in Hama City, 1 in the Damascene suburb of Kisweh, 3 in Rastan and 3 in Deir Ezzor City … More reinforcements, including tanks, armored vehicles and troops were sent to Deir Ezzor Province, with units storming into the border town of Alkbou Kamal, and others shelling parts of Deir Ezzor City killing at least 3 people … Meanwhile, hundreds were arrested in a mass detention campaign throughout the country, with special focus on Damascene suburbs and neighborhoods …

Tens of people were reportedly wounded when they came under fire on Tuesday in the western Damascus suburb of Muadhamiya, the northeastern city of Hasaka, and the port city of Latakia.
Assad over the past 48 hours has demonstrated that whatever the outcome of this debate, the role of the tank as an instrument of war against civilians remains highly relevant in the Middle East.
(Reuters) - The Syrian army, a vital pillar of President Bashar al-Assad's power, is showing little sign of the serious splits and defections the opposition seeks in its ranks, despite strains caused by his military repression of unrest.
Violent fringe elements have appeared during the Syrian tumult. One study last month from the International Crisis Group said some anti-government elements have taken up arms. However, that report said, "the vast majority of casualties have been peaceful protesters, and the vast majority of the violence has been perpetrated by the security services."
Washington and NATO rationalized its bombing of Libya on humanitarian grounds. Then why can’t anyone muster a threat against Syria?
“The important thing is to remain committed to the peaceful nature of the movement, despite ongoing provocation by the regime and the moral cowardice of the international leaders,” says Ammar Abdulhamid, a leading Syrian activist based in Washington. “Admittedly, this will get more difficult from now onward.”

Western leaders, including American officials, may claim that the reason they don’t get tough on the Assads is the lack of cohesion among Syrian opposition groups, but that is simply put hogwash meant to justify their inability and/or unwillingness to formulate a clear policy at this stage. Forming a dysfunctional behemoth made up of individual and groups that are ideologically and philosophically at odds is the not the right way to successfully manage the transitional process. What you need for that is the ability to attract pragmatic elements from all different political, social and religious backgrounds in order to support whatever makeshift council protest leaders on the ground will eventually field once they are given then opportunity to do so, that is, once the violence is brought to a halt.

The meeting that Secretary Clinton held with Syrian activists earlier on Tuesday was largely a symbolic affair, a mere pat on the collective back of a people who have expected and yearned for much, much more from the elected officials of a country that still boasts a AAA rating by Moody’s, albeit with a negative future outlook. I dread to think what rating will be assigned to America if Moody’s launched a new system based on a country’s foreign policy.

Be that as it may, the Revolution goes on, in the face of crackdown, lies, attempts at hijacking the cause by fringe elements, and the cowardice of world leaders. The Revolution is still AAA in my book, with a positive future outlook!

Saying “goodbye” (All died in the last 24 hours)
A Hamwi widow mourns her husband
A Hamwi father thanks people for showing up to his son’s “wedding,” and begs them to forgive his son who was a bit “reckless” if he did anything wrong to anyone
A father from the Damascene neighborhood of Moadamiya kisses the feet of his dead son, “because he is a martyr” , he addresses his son and reminds him that he had a haircut on the previous day
A Homsi father saying goodbye to his son

A funeral for an activist in the Damascene suburb of Moadamiya , ,  
A funeral for an activist in Idlib province’s Saraqib
Mass funeral for a number of activists in the Damascene suburb of Arbeen , ,
A funeral for an activist in Homs City
A funeral for an activist in Lattakia , ,  kissing and laying the martyr in his final resting place
A funeral for an activist in Nayrab
A funeral for an activist in Idlib City

Two snipers in Action in Hama City , One of their victims Another of their victims
Shelling Around the Clock

Midan: thousands take to the streets after the Night Prayers , , . Eventually tear gas gets used against the protesters . Then bullets begin to rain
Moadamiya: Loyalist Militia raid the neighborhood at night , sounds of gunfire can be heard throughout the neighborhood . Earlier, protesters burnt their utility bills as sign of defiance
Old Mazzeh: small but vociferous crowd in an area on the edge of one of the plushest neighborhoods in Damascus
Kisweh: pro-Assad militias attack and set the mourning tents on fire , earlier, protesters mocked the security by staging a quiet protest in which they chanted “the people want to topple the regime” very quietly and deliberately  
Zamalka: thousands take to the streets after the Night Prayers
Arbeen: protesters come under fire in the aftermath of a protest at noontime , one of the martyrs . The protest before the crackdown began as a funeral ,
Zabadani: despite the siege and the crackdown and the tanks
Madaya: Living under the same conditions as Zabadani, and equally defiant
Mohajreen Neighborhood

Hama City / Alamein Street Tanks at Al-Sibahee Square ,

Protesters come under fire at night
Holeh: gunfire and shelling
Talbisseh: tanks and barricaded in the streets

Ma’arrat Al-Nouman: protesters go “hi tech” in documenting their movement

Al-Ramel: protest in the morning , protest in the evening ,
Tabiyat / Rahman Mosque

Al-Bab: people carry out a vigil demanding release for all detainees
Houthaifa Mosque:

Deir Ezzor

Al-Qamishly: protesters dispersed by tear gas
Hauran / Deraa City