Saturday, October 22, 2011

The Steady, the Waffler & the War!

There is a real war going on in Homs and Deraa today, and so far not a single world leader, not a single Arab leader, not a single member of the Syrian opposition, especially the Syrian National Council, has addressed this fact. Civilians are dying, and the opposition is still debating whether to appeal for international protection and demand a no-fly zone, when for the weeks protesters have been making that demand from the top of their burning lungs. If this continues, the protesters, who are already shouting “the Syrian Army is a traitor,” will begin shouting “the Syrian opposition is a traitor.”  

Friday October 21, 2011

29 protesters were killed on a day that was dedicated to the martyrs of the Arab Reprieve, in reference to the Arab League decision to give the Assads 2 more weeks to stop violence and begin dialog with the opposition. 12 fell in Homs City, 3 in Hama City, 3 in Jassem in the Deraa/Hauran Province.  

Links

The Steady

Wi’am Amashah, the Syrian prisoner freed by Israelis in the recent swap with Hamas, declared on Al-Jazeerah earlier today, from his home village of Baq’atha in the Occupied Golan, that he stands with the people against the “killer regime.” He said the regime should be toppled and all of Syria should be liberated, not only the Golan http://youtu.be/9pzbASeJY-E

The Waffler

In an interview with Al-Akhbar Newspaper, spokeswoman for the Syrian National Council, Basma Kodmani, one of very few real technocrats in a council that projects itself as a technocratic rather than political council, made some interesting statements regarding the nature of the SNC.

To Mrs. Kodmani, the SNC is a nonpartisan technocratic council that seeks to support the revolution by “interpreting” its demands, especially the one about international protection, but does not claim to represent it. The SNC is but “a revolutionary council that supports the revolution, bears its demands and embodies its aspirations.” 

The main goal of the SNC, she explains, is to “isolate the regime and suffocate it economically, politically and financially” paving the way for its eventual implosion. The circle of support for the regime has narrowed, she noted, and there are many internecine problems.

On their face, Mrs. Kodmani’s statements sound reasonable, but, taken within the current context of Syrian oppositional politics and realities on the ground, one cannot help but think of that old political term: bullshit! Mrs. Kodmani is speaking out of both sides of her mouth and is coming out as the Bouthaina Shaaban of the SNC. In all its official communication with governments, the SNC is projecting itself as a transitional council and is seeking recognition as the sole legitimate representative of the Syrian people at this stage. Through their contact with LCCs, they have also sought this kind of recognition from the protesters, and they got it, but on condition they do indeed represent the demands of the revolution, not interpret them away.

For in regard to “interpreting” and “bearing” the demands of the revolution, not to mention “embodying” its aspirations, SNC leadership should bear in mind that the revolutionaries have made their job easy, by providing their own interpretation of their own demands: protection means a no-fly zone, a safe haven and support for the Free Syrian Army. These demands have already been endorsed by the majority of protesters in Idlib, Hama, Homs, Deir Ezzor, Baniyas, Lattakia, Deraa/Hauran and the Damascus Province. The only people who seem to object to them are members of the traditional opposition forces and some activists in Damascus and Aleppo cities, not exactly the hotbeds of the revolutionary movements and where the Assads have sought to quell whatever unrest without deploying tanks, so far.

In reality, with every statement they make, SNC leaders make it increasingly clear that they and the revolutionaries are speaking two different and mutually incomprehensible languages. No amount of bullshit can conceal that. There is an actual war going on in parts of Syria today, SNC leaders need to address the situation, and need to stop their bickering on the issue of international protection, or they should get out of the way.  

Meanwhile, a note to all those who wonder why I am being so harsh in my judgment on anything related to the SNC:

I am being harsh because some of SNC members, like Mrs. Kodmani, are indeed quite respectable figures, as such, they should know better than try to dissimulate and bullshit us. I hold them to a higher set of standards than those I apply to the ruling fascist thugocracy in Syria, and will continue to do so. For a long time, Assad officials told us to avoid being overly critical of the internal situation because this would play into the hands of Imperialists and Zionists plotting against our “great nation,” now the same logic is being deployed by some in the opposition  vis-à-vis any criticism of the SNC. I won’t stand for it. Enough is enough. This mentality has enslaved us for over 50 years, and I won’t put up with it anymore, not for one additional second. Those who want to play a public role have to submit to public scrutiny, and those who want to claim positions of leadership, not to mention the moral high ground, have to put up with being judged by the very principles they claim to defend. This is what people tell me when they criticize me. This is what I tell my colleagues when I criticize them. Welcome to the put up or shut up world of public service.

Featured Videos: the War


Baba Amr Neighborhood comes under the most extensive episodes of shelling we have witnessed since the attack on Rastan http://youtu.be/K0pftn66NjE , http://youtu.be/EpbaXwlh8JA , http://youtu.be/nJRFMVnuemM , http://youtu.be/7TlLRuHF2NM , http://youtu.be/lJhEBkGQBO0 Tanks and gunfire in Baba Amr http://youtu.be/77eY3pW9O5U an injured man http://youtu.be/FcfkKNzF0xY A martyr http://youtu.be/IM3rMkCn8Y8 His funeral http://youtu.be/oRLw1Iqi_FU Yet, despite all this, people come out in droves in the evening for a demonstration http://youtu.be/K8rpNDefLx4 and all through Homs City (below)

In Jib Al-Jandali protesters come under sniper fire as they come out of the mosque http://youtu.be/QynGIfRhLEE , http://youtu.be/ggk6gGb9ScU Martyr http://youtu.be/h_yOWIXhkWM a martyr from Bab Houd http://youtu.be/FmzbDMbImX8 Bab Dreib a martyr http://youtu.be/jtMUxyoD870 From the neighborhood of Bayadeh comes a message from the local women in English http://youtu.be/pwg2ygFmb-s

In Jassem in the Deraa/Hauran Province, victims from yesterday’s showdown http://youtu.be/tfIoXFbrQ8Q were buried today. Mourners in the funeral http://youtu.be/owYknVB12J4 , http://youtu.be/FuiLDpzUUHc , http://youtu.be/zIPc_p7hgj0 for one of yesterday’s martyrs came under fire http://youtu.be/GbOYuPq5Zqs , http://youtu.be/do9-WR3mQpY the local mosque served as field hospital http://youtu.be/U6r_l99Wjkc tanks rolled down the streets http://youtu.be/dF4DrM4hRiQ More wounded http://youtu.be/CNRfPGF4BuE  an injured child http://youtu.be/JdyTgMGpIBU

In Ankhel, protesters defy tanks in the streets http://youtu.be/OR9v6GyzVWU The injuries sustained by a 14-year old boy in Mleihah Shagiyeh on October 20 http://youtu.be/DRykAvho_1w In Deraa City (Sadd Street) protester come under fire http://youtu.be/MaoTNtRBD9Y

Protesters in Qoussour Neighborhood in Hama City http://youtu.be/kVIUFs_zKug come under fire http://youtu.be/grDaKgzXkNw , http://youtu.be/Ct9IDN10oos wounded http://youtu.be/xuCHiQucL1I In Manakh Street, pro-Assad militias shoot at protesters http://youtu.be/BidtksJLtMg

In Lattakia City, pro-Assad militias patrol the streets to prevent protests http://youtu.be/E39tyc8S27Y , http://youtu.be/UcKIRSeZ488

In Barzeh Suburb in Damascus, protesters carry a sign saying “SNC, be resolute and demand international protection” http://youtu.be/d5tYT2AMJFY In Arbeen Suburb, protesters come under fire http://youtu.be/vGT8x0YSzHc And there was gunfire in Kafar Batna Suburb as well http://youtu.be/SlLE1YNPZdU In Douma too http://youtu.be/Y2N-5C6-Gz4 Pro-Assad militias attack protesters in Eltal http://youtu.be/8BOX_wOIpAQ , http://youtu.be/o6ItZWQ5sl0 a man who was injured by the attack http://youtu.be/ftGfJty6UgA In Saqba, snipers on the rooftops http://youtu.be/3o9Zix1lWrM and militias in the streets http://youtu.be/D0qWTUuYMLM

A new Brigade of Defectors joins the Free Syrian Army, The Qaqa’ Bin Amr Al-Tamimi Brigade http://youtu.be/QirNwLwKn5g

In Hayyan Village in Aleppo Province, protesters come under fire http://youtu.be/d7huxOXW0fo

DERAA/HAURAN


HOMS CITY


HOMS PROVINCE

Despite the continuing siege, locals take to the streets in Talbisseh http://youtu.be/frVZuVZNGGU Sign “Treat us as the Jews treat their prisoners” http://youtu.be/3o3rtkmc280 Sign “15 days are not enough, give more time to kill us all” http://youtu.be/pHiiMjQ8kM0  Ghanto http://youtu.be/7MQfhSoLpQs In Rastan, people come out again http://youtu.be/NoMegOvArnE But the biggest crowds showed up in Tadmor (Palmyra) http://youtu.be/L6sX6dXotvw , http://youtu.be/d66ecYRNAOg (night) http://youtu.be/BzZEQRtcnMw Tal Al-Shoor http://youtu.be/Zoi1sGTem-0 Sukhneh http://youtu.be/iLygd1FJ_wY Qaryatein http://youtu.be/jZ_AHmuKzwo Houleh http://youtu.be/nqyfVnDcI3k

IDLIB


DAMASCUS


In the larger province, Rankous http://youtu.be/qEA-7A58eis Dmeir http://youtu.be/dOtbFfm9JA0