Friday, May 4, 2012

Big Trouble in Little Syria!

It might be asymmetric, but it’s a civil war nonetheless, and 300 UN observers with limited mandate are not going to stop it, neither will negotiations with the murderers responsible for paving the way to this.

Thursday May 3, 2012

The death toll for the last 2 days exceeded 50, including 5 students from the University of Aleppo who were killed when loyalist militias stormed the campus and opened fire on protesting students. The University was closed soon afterwards.

In Rural Aleppo, an ambush on Wednesday by members of the local resistance left 15 loyalists dead, including two high ranking generals. In clashes in different Damascene suburbs, 7 loyalists were killed in clashes with local resistance: 6 in Harasta and 1 in Kanaker.

Op-Eds & Special Reports

"The only Al Qaeda cells that operate in Syria are those manipulated by Assad's security apparatuses," said Ammar Abdulhamid, a US-based Syrian opposition activist in an online newsletter emailed today. "The suicide bombings are directly staged or facilitated by them. Issues pertaining to the timing and the real beneficiaries, and everything we know about the Assads' involvement in terror networks, all point in this direction."

Mr. Abdulhamid's post carried a YouTube link that quotes Walid Muallem, Syria's foreign minister, telling a news conference in Damascus in December that suicide bombings would not be an "embarrassment" for the government but would bestow "credibility" upon its claim that it is under threat from Islamist militants.

Some analysts have long maintained that the Syrian authorities have cooperated with jihadist networks on a short-term tactical basis, even though the nominally secular nature of Syria's Baathist regime and its Alawite identity makes it an unlikely bedfellow with Sunni jihadists. Such jihadists view the Alawite faith, an obscure offshoot of Shiite Islam, as apostate.

“He also revealed that Assad wants to invite the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibet and a leading figure in world Buddhism, to sanctify an ancient Buddhist temple in Syria.” Yeah, that’s a nice way to appease your Chinese allies. He really does play chess very well!

Video Highlights

Leaked video shows mass execution in Baba Amr, Homs City More Another

Still in Homs City, Qoussour Neighborhood, bodies are left to rot in the streets, locals unable to retrieve tem due to sniper activities In Khaldiyeh, a UN monitor inspects the body of a sniper victim

Houses in Bayadah Neighborhood burn, as the pounding resumes

Head of the UN monitoring team addresses local activists in Hama City, Arba’een Neighborhood A local old woman tells the monitors that as soon as they will leave, pro-Assad death squads will resume firing at them

In the University of Aleppo, 4 were killed by pro-Assad death squads, and dozens were wounded. This is one of the injured