Now that we have come so far, it might be worth remembering that we started this revolution to topple the regime, not help tear the country apart. For this, we should be ready and willing to enter into dialogue whenever a real chance becomes available, even as we pursue our armed struggle. It’s not an either/or situation: we fight when there is no other choice, but when there is a chance for real dialogue we should be willing and ready. Let international mediators do what they can to create the opportunity for dialogue, and let’s support their effort by producing our vision for change in Syria, beyond the usual platitudes about citizenship and justice. Since the devil is in the details, as well know, it’s time we began providing some of these details and wrestling with the real demons standing between us and achieving our goals.
While so much focus is usually given to Jihadi videos with their sounds tracks of religious songs reflecting Sunni doctrine, we rarely get a chance to see the other side doing the same. But, it has been clear since the beginning of the revolution that for many Alawites at least, the Assad-orchestrated crackdown was their version of jihad, one aimed at Syria’s Sunni community. This is an element of doctrine is beginning to get more prominence at this stage, as Assad tries to recruit the poorer classes in the Alawite community to join his militias. This video found on the mobile of a fallen Alawite militiaman, shows the militia lobbing missiles against enemy targets, but it’s the religious song inspired by Alawite doctrine that is notable here: Talk of conspiracy against the resistance and Assad’s speeches are no longer sufficient to motivate Assad’s Alawite supporters, the doctrine needs to be called in as well. This is rapidly becoming a confessional war with all the trimmings http://youtu.be/QDYGzHTd-bA
It’s for this reason, that we should take the advice offered by Simon Adams, the executive director of the Global Center for the Responsibility to Protect, to heart:
The real choice in Syria today is not between Alawites or Sunnis, or between Mr. Assad and Al Qaeda, but between action enabling further crimes against humanity to take place and action dedicated to ending impunity for such crimes once and for all.
A recently released detainee shows signs of severe malnutrition: he says he is 18 years old and was imprisoned in the Air Force Security compound in Hama. He was 80 Kg. (170 Lbs.) when first detained and he spent 4 months in detention. He is now less than 50 Kg (110 Lbs). He says he was accused of being a rebel, which he was not, but, he says, he will be joining the rebels once he is healthy enough to do it. Over 1,000 other people were detained with him, and everyday 7 or 8 of them died of torture or hunger. http://youtu.be/k7oVlryrZz4
The battles in the Eastern Ghoutah Region in Damascus continues to heat up, rebels managed to destroy an entire convoy near the village of Bouydah http://youtu.be/115ibVObfIc , http://youtu.be/8THYcG3rp9M Clashes began earlier in the day http://youtu.be/U1IWZE2ZpGM But many civilians were killed in the pounding http://youtu.be/Na2SUzdJs0Y Assad’s tanks forced to withdraw from Harasta http://youtu.be/6N5KuPCP6lg Meanwhile, MiGs continued with their daily routine of bombardment: Kafar Batna http://youtu.be/DxCgvAOt_QQ Hamouriyeh http://youtu.be/CMeAq8-ckgU Saqba http://youtu.be/I0TkqYV71qQ People in Jisreen rush to save the wounded and retrieve the bodies from under the rubble after a raid http://youtu.be/3KOfdoJsU7k , http://youtu.be/r88o_3q_vn4
Pro-Assad militias torturing captives in Yalda, Damascus http://youtu.be/KuufacDHlpQ
The pounding of the town of Zabadani in Damascus resumes http://youtu.be/de-I54eUDWA , http://youtu.be/3_jpLneFkqg
Leaked video shows the pounding of Haffeh District in Lattakia by pro-Assad militias http://youtu.be/Jfaiv-HzOIs
Rebels salvage the wreckage of a MIG that they have downed in Alboukamal, Deir Ezzor Province http://youtu.be/Eo8IySFqFrQ , http://youtu.be/6LWUZukMUX8 The pro-Assad militias that were captured by the rebels http://youtu.be/bwctb9kD9Io Major sections of the towns have been captured by rebels http://youtu.be/e85s9UPfV08
The pounding of the town of Rastan in Homs Province continues http://youtu.be/XLyFsftRfw0 , http://youtu.be/kt-Jdne5BpQ , http://youtu.be/qELXtNQXw3E