Saturday, September 15, 2012

Against All Odds!

Despite the rapid disintegration of the country and its institutions, political activists are still organizing nonviolent rallies to defy the regime and keep people’s focus on the initial goals of the revolution: democratic change, not communal retributions. The battle might be lost, but it is worth fighting.

Friday September 14, 2012

Today’s Death toll: 108. The Breakdown: the toll includes 20 children and 5 women. 30 in Aleppo, 26 in Damascus and Suburbs, 20 in Daraa (most in the massacre in Bosra), 19 in Deir Ezzor (especially in Mouhassan and Alboukamal), 6 in Homs, 4 in Hama, and 3 in Idlib. (LCC)

390 demonstrations took place throughout Syria. Activists are pushing hard for a return to peaceful rallies to help keep focus on ousting Assad and prevent full-scale descent into civil strife.

News

Op-Eds & Special Reports
Tens of thousands of Syrians who moved into schools after air strikes and fighting drove them from their homes will be on the move again on Sunday when the government plans to start the school year despite unrelenting violence. Panic has spread through displaced communities in roughly 800 schools around the country, each housing hundreds of men, women and children with nowhere to go.

“This is a relatively flat border, with nearly no physical barriers. The more the political boundary dissipates, the more northern Syria and southern Turkey will merge into each other,” said Soner Cagaptay, director of the Turkish Research Program at The Washington Institute for Near East Policy. “In the long-term, this could expose Turkey to unsavory political movements coming from post-Assad Syria, ranging from potential jihadists to hard-line Kurdish nationalists.”

Randa Kassis and Jehad Saleh are co-founders of the Movement for a Pluralistic Society, which is holding its first member meeting in Paris on September 13-14. Randa Kassis is Syrian anthropologist living in Paris and was formerly a member of the Syrian National Council. Jehad Saleh is a Syrian freelance journalist living in Washington, DC.


In August 2012, my wife, Syrian pro-democracy activist, Khawla Yusuf, and I undertook a three-week long trip to Turkey. The trip was not our first, nor will it be our last. But having coincided with many important developments on the ground and included meetings with so many key activists and rebel leaders from inside the country, we decided to put together this report, based on our impressions, by way of shedding light on an increasingly tragic and troubling situation and in the hope of spurring the international community into adopting a serious policy to address it.



Video Highlights

In Douma, Damascus, trying to save a wounded young man from a sniper http://youtu.be/KHKWvOhnmnY Meanwhile, the bombing of the town of Madaya continues http://youtu.be/0tm54miQjaA The neighborhood of Al-Qadam and surrounding alleys in Damascus City also get pounded from day http://youtu.be/v4OqK5y-xRQ , http://youtu.be/74Zh09KmEMs , http://youtu.be/axYIlY9l6uQ to night http://youtu.be/Zd0JnT2E4Iw , http://youtu.be/iafftHoZi7s

Buildings in the border town of Alboukamal, Deir Ezzor Province, catch fire following a round of intense aerial bombing http://youtu.be/Lu9rx4iglhw , http://youtu.be/bGC3tPt35z0 , http://youtu.be/lWH7gl0Kbgk , http://youtu.be/RbRsQBjDHHg In nearby Qouriyeh, locals prepare today’s dead for burial http://youtu.be/wkNToV9h9H4

The Jabal Shahshabo Region in Idlib gets pounded http://youtu.be/aywUUm8tCBk , http://youtu.be/qmo1ediJ4Q8

In Bosra, Daraa Province, locals try to rescue people caught under the rubble http://youtu.be/qYZ6nYBwT7c following an air raid http://youtu.be/fEMvRRdrXzE

The pounding of the town of Rastan continues http://youtu.be/qYZ6nYBwT7c , http://youtu.be/yKhgu1OzpnU