Monday, August 1, 2011

On the First Day of Ramadan!

Bloodshed and lies, anarchy and lawlessness are about the only thing Bashar Al-Assad & Co. have up their sleeves these days! Their bag of trick is empty. But the show must go on, proceeding at a deliberate pace to its logical conclusion. 

Monday August 1, 2011

More fatalities and casualties reported in Hama, Deir Ezzor, Deraa and Damascus...

Ford's departure, prior to yesterday's deadly attacks on protestors, comes as violence in Syria has worsened and as the United States and its allies prepare to step up the pressure on the Assad regime this week. Ford is also scheduled to testify on Capitol Hill later this week, and one official said he is expected to return to Syria next week.
"Riad had booked to do crucial tests in Germany. After their luggage was checked and the two were sitting at the boarding gate a security officer came with a black plastic bag he said they found in Riad's luggage," the friend said. "Pelican (Seif's wife) realized it was a charade to prevent Riad from traveling."
EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton condemned Syria's crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, a day after one of the bloodiest since the uprising against Assad's authoritarian rule began in mid-March.
Following the hour-long closed-door meeting, several diplomats said that after months of deadlock over Syria in the council, the fresh violence appeared to be pushing the divided members toward some form of reaction. But envoys disagreed over whether the 15-nation body should adopt the Western-backed draft resolution or negotiate a less binding statement.
Rami Nakhle says activists have "burned their return boots" — an Arabic saying that means there is no going back. If they stop now, he explains, the secret police will round up every activist inside Syria.
The Assad regime lost its legitimacy months ago, starting with the detention of youngsters in Daraa in March, a grotesque incident of repression that ignited the weekly protests against the Assad regime.
Syrians of all stripes are beginning to understand that everyone is a victim of this regime and that the real conspiracy is that of the Assads themselves. Sunni leaders must act now to prevent the revolt from descending into civil war by assuring minorities that they will not face reprisals in a new Syria. This could bring Alawites into the opposition’s ranks and seal the regime’s demise.
“Why do you think having an atrocity filmed in broad daylight and exhibited to the world would stop a dictator like Assad from committing one?”
No Syrian official will be too worried by William Hague's call yesterday for stronger international pressure or by the tighter sanctions on the regime the EU announced.
The regime's opponents insist that they will not be intimidated and these actions will only swell their ranks. Worryingly, the mood among a small but significant number of the protesters is changing. There is growing impatience.
But while one or two prominent lawmakers have suggested military force be on the table, others have urged the administration to do everything short of that to pressure Assad to step down. Though the administration has pushed new sanctions against the regime and condemned its behavior, officials and analysts say the United States can certainly do more.
After fleeing with his family from Syria in fear of his life, a former officer in Bashar al-Assad’s military tells of manipulation and brutality in the ongoing crackdown.
Rights activist says the international response to violence in Syria is merely "symbolic" and "rife with hypocrisy".

On the First Day of Ramadan, our True Dictator gave to us: a large-scale killing spree!

In addition to continuing bloodshed in Hama City, Deir Ezzor and Albou Kamal, security officers and Assad death squads opened fire as well on protesters in the Damascene suburbs of Al-Qadam and Kisweh, Daraya and Mouaddamiyeh, and continued to, lay siege to dozens, of suburbs, towns and communities across the country. 

Whose will shall prevail at the end, Assad’s or the protesters’, remains an open question. But, I think protesters should realize by now that they are on their own. The international community will do nothing beyond offering condemnations and symbolic moves. Assad supporters, on the other hand, understand much fully the strategic implications of the situation, and offer more than mere symbolic gestures to their troubled allies. In fact, had it not been for their financial, technical and logistical support, the Assads would have been in a far worse position.

The Syrian people are not just fighting against the Assads, they are taking on the rulers of Iran, Hezbollah and a myriad of cowardly Arab rulers, while the world is watching. The interesting thing is: they might still emerge victorious. All depends on their ability to keep it peaceful, even as army defectors clash with loyalists, and some individual acts of vendetta take place. The calm that Hama witnessed before the onslaught of loyalists and thugs stands a great testimony to who the protesters are, what they want, and what they can achieve, when they’re in control.

Syria / Whereabouts Unknown: People have been making claims and counterclaims about this video, but in reality no one knows for sure the identity of people responsible for this atrocity, or the actual time and place involved. This is the kind of nightmare the Assads are dragging us into. While Assad loyalists would gladly blame protesters for these crimes, developments on the ground have amply shown by now that such occurrences are closely linked to the presence and activities of Assad security forces and loyalist militias. Whenever the protesters are in control, peace, security, and that added bonus that is freedom tend to rule the day. Regardless of who is behind this crime, then, the general breakdown of law and order in the country rest squarely on the shoulders of the Assads who their thugs-on-the ground, and their incendiary state-sponsored propaganda had done their best to get us to this point.

Hama City / Aug 1: morgues fill up with corpses of unidentified martyrs

Deir Ezzor City / Aug 1: Loyalist tanks forced to flee after being attacked by defectors , a local informant “confesses” that security officers have armed pro-Assad militias throughout the city , despite the ongoing military siege and clashes between loyalists and defectors, members of Baggarah tribe demonstrate at night in support of their arrested leader nawaf Al-Basheer , local residents hold a vigil after Nights Prayers

Damascus / Sheikh Sariya Al-Rifai / Aug 1: Sariya is one of the well-known sheikhs in Damascus. In this sermon delivered on the morning of August 1, he warns “the leadership” that their tactics will drag the country into a violent internal showdown.

Damascus / Midan / Aug 1: thousands take to the streets of the Midan District again after Night Prayers , ,

Hauran / Da’el / Aug 1: security forces open fire on protesters after Night Prayers

Hama City: sounds of shelling and gunfire in the morning , the same goes through the night after the end of fasting . , , , Demonstrations after the night prayers and in spite the ongoing military crackdown , . Children pray in the streets because, it’s unsafe to go to the mosques . Local parks transformed into makeshift cemeteries for the fallen martyrs . Unknown martyr , another martyr . The local Military Security headquarters was not spared the shelling . The minaret of a historic mosque is also not spared . Hama City / July 29: some protesters were carrying a banner endorsing the Antalya Conference as their sole representative in the international scene just two days before the current crackdown

Taybat Al-Imam: residents of this town show up in numbers to support Hama
Kafar Nabboudeh: thousands take to the streets after Night Prayers to show solidarity with the provincial capital
Ma’arrat Masreen

Artouz: a kidnaping of local resident from his car by security officer leaves his car smeared with blood, and his brains splattered on the ground In the morning, thousands had taken to the streets in support of Hama 
Madaya Valley: Tanks and troops on the move through the Madaya Valley , , 22 tanks in all ended up entering the city of Zabadani overlooking the valley where troops established barricades throughout the city , . Meanwhile, the neighboring city of Madaya observed a general strike , , then held a vigil
Douma: thousands take part in a vigil after the Night Prayers 
Kisweh: a funeral for an activist . Protests after Night Prayers , ,
Daraya: a demonstration after the Noon Prayers . At night, protesters take to the street again, but they come under fire .
Moaddamiya: a small group of protesters insist on being heard after the Dawn Prayers, despite the military siege of the suburb , for security is all over the place in this protest hotspot and are doing their best to keep the anger alive by carrying our periodic raids and abusing the local population

Rastan: this local activist was assassinated in his car by an Assad loyalist , the funeral
Many bazars in Homs observe a call for general strike

Saraqib: a truck catches fire after it is hit by a tank shell
Ma’arrat Al-Nouman: thousands take to the streets after Night Prayers , ,
Binnish: the city observes a call for a general strike
Military reinforcement passing through
Sermeen: a funeral for a local activist
Jabal Al-Zawiyeh

Deir Ezzor
Deir Ezzor City: a night-time demonstration despite the ongoing military crackdown

Deraa / Hauran

Al-Ramel Neighborhood: thousands take to the streets after Noon Prayers , then after Night Prayers ,  ,
Sleibeh Neighborhood: protesters come under fire after Night Prayers ,
Gunfire also heard in parts of Lattakia

New Aleppo / Omar Bin Al-Khattab Mosque:
Aleppo city / Al-Ghoufran Mosque

Al-Raqqah Province / Tabaqa City:
Al-Hassakeh Province / Amoudeh