Free Republic 3rd Quarter Fundraising Target: $85,000 Receipts & Pledges to-date: $68,580
80%  
Woo hoo!! After accruing the balance of the monthlies we're now over 80%!! Less than $17k to go!! Let's git 'er done!! Thank you all very much!!

Keyword: assad

Brevity: Headers | « Text »
  • Damascus 'Risking Genocide'

    06/06/2012 1:40:44 PM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 5 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 6/6/12 | Gabe Kahn
    Italian foreign minister Guilo Terzi on Wednesday warned Bashar al-Assad's policies in Syria risk creating a genocide in Syria unless there is "rapid intervention." "The strategy of Damascus risks causing a genocide without rapid intervention," Mr Terzi said. Italy was among those countries who expelled the Syrian ambassador to Rome last month in a coordinated action with other Western powers after a massacre in the town of Houla. The Syrian leadership "is fighting for its survival with an ever more direct and brutal escalation, with terror against the civilian population and with the artificial fuelling of internal conflict," Mr Terzi...
  • The Shabiha: Inside Assad's death squads

    06/02/2012 9:18:19 PM PDT · by Olog-hai · 8 replies
    Daily Telegraph (UK) ^ | 6:00PM BST 02 Jun 2012 | Harriet Alexander and Ruth Sherlock in Beirut
    The door to Dr. Mousab Azzawi's clinic, on the Mediterranean coast of Syria, was always open to anyone who needed help. But, operating in the heartland of the feared Shabiha militia, there were some patients the doctor would have preferred not to treat. "They were like monsters," said Dr. Azzawi, who worked in Latakia. "They had huge muscles, big bellies, big beards. They were all very tall and frightening, and took steroids to pump up their bodies. I had to talk to them like children, because the Shabiha likes people with low intelligence. But that is what makes them so...
  • French President: No Solution in Syria Unless Assad Leaves

    06/02/2012 3:03:06 PM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 2 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 2/6/12
    On Friday, French President Francois Hollande stated that the only way out of the ongoing crisis in Syria was the departure of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which would require an increase in international pressure and more UN sanctions. "The regime of Bashar al-Assad has behaved in an unacceptable and intolerable manner and has committed acts which disqualify it," Hollande told a joint news conference with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. "No solution to this crisis is possible without the departure of Bashar ..."
  • 11-year-old played dead to survive Syria massacre

    05/31/2012 12:25:34 PM PDT · by nuconvert · 12 replies
    When the gunmen began to slaughter his family, 11-year-old Ali el-Sayed says he fell to the floor of his home, soaking his clothes with his brother's blood to fool the killers into thinking he was already dead.
  • Israel To Remain an Enemy, Says Syrian Rebel Leader

    05/20/2012 1:30:01 AM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 5 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 20/5/12 | Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
    As the Syria creeps into total anarchy, rebels also insist that Israel will remain an enemy after the anticipated fall of Syrian President Bashar Assad. President Barack Obama told the G-8 Summit Saturday that Assad must leave. Regardless of whether he continues in power or is replaced, Israel is destined to remain an enemy state. Syrian opposition leader Burhan Ghalioun told a Saudi Arabian newspaper Saturday that Israel is "the main enemy of the Syrian revolution,” and he accused Jerusalem of being Assad’s “strongest ally.” .....
  • Assad: We're Fighting Against Foreign Mercenaries

    05/17/2012 2:05:55 AM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 6 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 17/5/12 | Elad Benari
    In his first interview since December, Syrian President Bashar Assad insisted his regime is fighting back against foreign mercenaries who want to overthrow him and not innocent Syrians aspiring for democracy. The interview with Russian TV, recorded on Tuesday and aired on Wednesday, showed that Assad is still standing his ground despite widespread international condemnation over his deadly crackdown on dissent. “There are foreign mercenaries, some of them still alive,” Assad was quoted by The Associated Press as having said in the interview on Russian state news channel Rossiya-24. “They are being detained and we are preparing to show them...
  • Fmr IDF Spokeperson: Israel's Striving for Peace in the Middle East vs Fanatic Islam

    05/15/2012 12:40:24 PM PDT · by se99tp · 3 replies
    Christian Concepts Daily ^ | May 14th, 2012 | Avi Lipkin
    Very often, people in Israel, Jews, Christians and Moslems ask whether peace is attainable in the Middle East, considering that two peoples- Arab and Jews- are fighting over a very small piece of land in a very large territorial sea of Islam... ...The reason I mention these five wars between Israel and the Arabs is not to try to attempt to give a history of Israel's military history, but to put into perspective certain quotes by Syrian President Hafez Assad, who has gone on record as saying: "These Arabs have lost five wars against Israel. We can afford to loose...
  • Erdogan Encourages Syrian Opposition

    05/06/2012 2:19:38 PM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 5 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 6/5/12
    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoÄŸan of Turkey said, Sunday, that President Bashar Al-Assad's grip on Syria is getting weaker by the day and "victory is close," according to the Associated Press. Unde heavy protection, Erdogan spoke to thousands of cheering Syrians who fled the brutal crackdown...
  • More than 34 children killed in Syria since truce: U.N.

    05/01/2012 9:43:18 AM PDT · by nuconvert · 2 replies
    More than 34 children allegedly have been killed in Syria since a shaky truce between President Bashar al-Assad's security forces and opposition groups began on April 12, a U.N. envoy said on Tuesday. "I urge all parties in Syria to refrain from indiscriminate tactics resulting in the killing and wounding of children," said Radhika Coomaraswamy, special envoy for children and armed conflict.
  • Baathist-Facsist butcher Assad: can't detach Arabism from Islam... (Muhammad’s Quraish stock)

    04/16/2012 9:28:42 AM PDT · by Milagros · 6 replies
    The ideology behind the Butcher Assad's Baathist fascist, racist regime is backed by the supremacist for 'Greater Syria,' the infamous SSNP. The latest crackdown has claimed over 10,000 people, scores were tortured to death, especially children. Straight from the horse's mouth about Arabism and Islamism: President al-Assad meets Levant Scholars\' Union delegation ... Last Update: 11-04-2012 11:59PM Syrian Radio & TV Online As for extremism, the President said that there is nothing called extremism in Islam, adding "Islam is extremist in good and amity and in regards to organizing societies, promoting and developing them." On Islam and Arabism, President al-Assad...
  • Clashes In Syria As U.N. Ceasefire Monitors Due

    04/15/2012 6:57:54 AM PDT · by edpc · 4 replies
    Reuters via Yahoo News ^ | 15 Apr 2012 | Oliver Holmes
    BEIRUT (Reuters) - Syrian government forces shelled the city of Homs on Sunday, resident opposition activists and a rights activist said, as a six-person advance party of U.N. observers is due to arrive in Syria to monitor a ceasefire meant to start four days ago. British Foreign Secretary William Hague said that the 30 unarmed observers who have been sanctioned to enter Syria by a unanimous vote at the Security Council on Saturday was insufficient and had to be "beefed up."
  • Report: Assad forces fire at Syrian refugee camp in Turkey

    04/11/2012 3:51:03 AM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 7 replies
    Haaretz ^ | 11/4/12
    Shots were fired Wednesday morning by Syrian forces toward a refugee camp in Turkey, located across the border from Syria, Turkish media reported. CNN-Turk broadcast images showing Syrian forces firing at Turkish territory from a border surveillance building flying the Syrian flag near southeastern Turkey. Photo Moreover, Turkish media reported that Assad troops fired at Syrian refugees trying to cross the border with Turkey. On Monday, Syrian forces fired into Turkey and Lebanon, killing two people in a Turkish refugee camp. Meanwhile on Wednesday, Syrian activists have reported fresh violence....
  • U.S. Senators Call to Arm Syrians

    04/10/2012 2:21:50 PM PDT · by Eleutheria5 · 15 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 10/4/12
    United States Senators John McCain and Joseph Lieberman called Tuesday for the U.S. to arm Syrian rebels. “The international community is failing the people of Syria,” said McCain. “The only way to reverse this is to help the opposition change the military balance of power on the ground.” Lieberman called to arm President Bashar Assad’s political opponents...
  • Turkey says U.N. "indirectly" backs Syria oppression

    04/05/2012 5:14:38 AM PDT · by nuconvert · 1 replies
    Yahoo/Reuters ^ | Apr 3, 2012
    Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan accused the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday of indirectly supporting the "oppression" of the Syrian people by failing to adopt a united stance on Syria. Once a friend of Damascus, Turkey has become a fierce critic of President Bashar al-Assad over his year-long crackdown on his opponents and has called for the Syrian leader to step down. "In not taking a decision, the U.N. Security Council has indirectly supported the oppression. To stand by with your hands and arms tied while the Syrian people are dying every day is to support the oppression," Erdogan said.
  • Syria says revolt over, army to pull out gradually

    03/31/2012 6:47:29 PM PDT · by U-238 · 8 replies
    News Daily ^ | 3/31/2012 | Douglas Hamilton and Erika Solomon
    Syria says the year-long revolt to topple President Bashar al-Assad is now over, but it will keep its forces in cities to "maintain security" until it is safe to withdraw in keeping with a U.N.-backed peace deal. The agreement proposed by United Nations-Arab League special envoy Kofi Annan says the Syrian authorities must be first to withdraw troops and stop violence immediately. The army kept up an offensive against opposition strongholds on Saturday, pummelling the Khalidiya district of Homs city. "Mortars are falling every minute and the sounds of explosions are shaking the neighborhood," an activist report said. A child...
  • Iran helps Syria ship oil to China: sources

    03/31/2012 1:15:41 AM PDT · by U-238 · 7 replies
    Reuters ^ | 3/31/2012 | Jessica Donati
    Iran is helping its ally Syria defy Western sanctions by providing a vessel to ship Syrian oil to a state-run company in China, potentially giving the government of President Bashar al-Assad a financial boost worth an estimated $80 million. Iran, itself a target of Western sanctions, is among Syria's closest allies and has promised to do all it can to support Assad, recently praising his handling of the year-long uprising against Assad in which thousands have been killed. China has also shielded Assad from foreign intervention, vetoing two Western-backed resolutions at the United Nations over the bloodshed, and is not...
  • Russia stares down the West on Syria

    03/29/2012 6:41:22 PM PDT · by U-238 · 3 replies
    The Hindu ^ | 3/29/2012 | Vladimir Radyuhin
    If one needed a textbook example of how propaganda can help turn defeat into victory then one should look at Western media coverage of recent diplomatic battles on Syria. Everybody agrees that the so-called “presidential statement” on Syria the U.N. Security Council adopted on March 21 was a turning point in efforts to resolve the Syrian crisis. It marked the first time the Security Council (SC) had reached an agreement on Syria and endorsed a peace plan proposed by U.N. and Arab League envoy Kofi Annan. The surprise consensus in the Council, which was earlier riven by divisions, raised the...
  • Syria imposes travel ban on men under 42: reports

    03/26/2012 7:05:56 PM PDT · by U-238 · 5 replies · 13+ views
    AFP ^ | 3/26/2012 | AFP
    The embattled regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has banned all men between the ages of 18 and 42 from traveling outside the country without prior authorisation, according to local media. "Syrians between the ages of 18 and 42 are banned from travel if they don't have prior authorisation from the (army's) recruitment office," Aliqtisadi business magazine said on its Internet site. The travel ban until now had only applied to men who had not completed their two-year compulsory military service. Aliqtisadi said the new measure, clearly linked to the revolt gripping the country, was being applied at border posts,...
  • Iranian weapons help Bashar Assad put down Syria protests, officials say

    03/24/2012 7:30:18 PM PDT · by U-238 · 7 replies
    MSNBC/Reuters ^ | 3/24/2012 | MSNBC/Reuters
    Iran is providing a broad array of assistance to Syrian President Bashar Assad to help him suppress anti-government protests, from high-tech surveillance technology to guns and ammunition, U.S. and European security officials say. Tehran's technical assistance to Assad's security forces includes electronic surveillance systems, technology designed to disrupt efforts by protesters to communicate via social media, and Iranian-made drone aircraft for overhead surveillance, the officials said. They discussed intelligence matters on condition of anonymity. "Over the past year, Iran has provided security assistance to Damascus to help shore up Assad. Tehran during the last couple of months has been aiding...
  • Iran helping Assad to put down protests: officials

    03/24/2012 7:49:20 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies · 1+ views
    Reuters ^ | Friday, March 23, 2012 | Mark Hosenball
    Iran is providing a broad array of assistance to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to help him suppress anti-government protests, from high-tech surveillance technology to guns and ammunition, U.S. and European security officials say. Tehran's technical assistance to Assad's security forces includes electronic surveillance systems, technology designed to disrupt efforts by protesters to communicate via social media, and Iranian-made drone aircraft for overhead surveillance, the officials said. They discussed intelligence matters on condition of anonymity. Iran has also provided lethal materiel that can be used for riot control, they said... Iran has for decades been a patron to Syria, which has...
  • Are There or Aren’t there Russian Troops in Syria?

    03/20/2012 9:19:04 PM PDT · by U-238 · 21 replies
    Defense Tech ^ | 3/20/2012 | Defense Tech
    Well, things in Syria are getting a bit more complicated. Weeks after the news that special operators from NATO countries may be inside Syria advising the rebels, comes the news that Russia has dispatched counterterrorism troops to the embattled nation. Now, some news reports say the Russian’s claim they’ve just sent a Navy tanker to support anti-piracy operations in Middle Eastern waters and that any troops aboard that ship are simply there to protect the tanker’s civilian crew and that there are no Russian counterterror troop in Syria. Now, the ship is docked in the Syrian port of Tartus on...
  • Russian Anti-Terror Troops Arrive in Syria

    03/19/2012 12:10:46 PM PDT · by C19fan · 29 replies · 1+ views
    ABC News ^ | March 19, 2012 | Kirit Radia and Rym Momtaz
    A Russian military unit has arrived in Syria, according to Russian news reports, a development that a United Nations Security Council source told ABC News was "a bomb" certain to have serious repercussions. Russia, one of President Bashar al-Assad's strongest allies despite international condemnation of the government's violent crackdown on the country's uprising, has repeatedly blocked the United Nations Security Council's attempts to halt the violence, accusing the U.S. and its allies of trying to start another war.
  • Asma al-Assad: A Rose in the Desert

    03/19/2012 6:26:56 PM PDT · by BO Stinkss · 11 replies · 3+ views
    http://www.vogue.com/ ^ | 2/25/2011 | Joan Juliet Buck
    Asma al-Assad is glamorous, young, and very chic—the freshest and most magnetic of first ladies. Her style is not the couture-and-bling dazzle of Middle Eastern power but a deliberate lack of adornment. She’s a rare combination: a thin, long-limbed beauty with a trained analytic mind who dresses with cunning understatement. Paris Match calls her “the element of light in a country full of shadow zones.” She is the first lady of Syria. Syria is known as the safest country in the Middle East, possibly because, as the State Department’s Web site says, “the Syrian government conducts intense physical and electronic...
  • Saudi sends military gear to Syria rebels: diplomat

    03/18/2012 10:27:05 PM PDT · by Ernest_at_the_Beach · 19 replies
    AFP ^ | – Sat, 17 Mar, 2012
    Saudi Arabia is delivering military equipment to Syrian rebels in an effort to stop bloodshed by President Bashar al-Assad's regime, a top Arab diplomat said on Saturday."Saudi military equipment is on its way to Jordan to arm the Free Syrian Army," the diplomat told AFP on condition of anonymity."This is a Saudi initiative to stop the massacres in Syria," he added, saying that further "details will follow at a later time."The announcement came two days after the conservative Sunni-ruled kingdom said it had shut down its embassy in Syria and withdrawn all its staff.It also followed a brief meeting on...
  • Syria arms imports surge thanks to Russia

    03/18/2012 6:03:44 PM PDT · by U-238 · 1 replies
    Newsday ^ | 3/18/2012 | Louise Nordstrom
    Syria imported nearly six times more weapons in 2007-2011 than in the previous five-year period, with Russia accounting for 72 percent of the arms supplies to President Bashar Assad's regime, an international research institute said Monday. The report on global arms transfers by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute highlighted how Moscow continues to provide Syria with weapons even as the U.S., the European Union and others impose arms embargoes due to the regime's violent crackdown on protesters. It did not specify the volume of weapons exports after the start of the uprising in 2011. Major Russian arms deliveries to...
  • Syria: 'I Am the Real Dictator', Declares Asma al-Assad

    03/18/2012 5:49:16 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 36 replies
    The Telegraph ^ | 18 Mar 2012
    Asma al-Assad, the British-born wife of Syria’s president, told a friend that she was the “real dictator” in the family, according to leaked emails that suggest she holds a cherished place in the leader’s inner circle.Despite the ambitions she expressed for liberalising Syria before the uprising, Mrs Assad, 36, displays no misgivings about the regime’s bloody crackdown, which has accounted for most of the estimated 8,000 lives lost. Her correspondence with Bashar al-Assad, his aides, friends and family portray her as highly supportive of her husband. In an email to a family friend on Jan 10, she praised a speech...
  • Obama's Muslim Adviser: Assad Too Soft on Israel

    03/18/2012 12:58:17 PM PDT · by Nachum · 19 replies
    INN ^ | 3/18/12 | Chana Ya'ar
    A Muslim adviser to U.S. President Barack Obama warned in a post on the Twitter social networking site last week that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad can't deliver 'resistance to Israel.' The adviser, Egyptian-born Dalia Mohaded, is employed in the Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, at the White House. The tweet, posted on March 10 and picked up by the media watchdog Jihadwatch, read as follows: "To those siding w/Assad: he cannot deliver stability, protection of minorities, or resistance to Israel. He is a killer w/o legitimacy.” The tweet has sparked numerous responses in media, on the Internet and on...
  • The Middle East's Marie Antoinettes

    03/14/2012 5:54:00 PM PDT · by Clintonfatigued · 15 replies
    Slate ^ | March 23, 2011 | Noreen Malone
    Last night, not quite a month after a Vogue profile of Syrian first lady Asma Assad declared Syria the "safest country" in the Middle East, government forces killed six in the southern city of Deraa, site of unprecedented protests against the ruling regime. That would be the regime headed by Asma's husband Bashar Assad, who, as Vogue explained, was elected with a "startling" 97 percent of the vote. ("In Syria," the writer added delicately, "power is hereditary.") The much-derided article did not linger on this point, however, choosing instead to celebrate its subject with a series of besotted compliments following...
  • Murderous Dictator Also Has Bad Taste in Music

    03/14/2012 3:46:34 PM PDT · by nickcarraway · 14 replies · 1+ views
    New York Magazine ^ | 3/14/2012 | Noreen Malone
    The Guardian has gotten its hands on a trove of emails it says are from the inner circle of Syria's Bashar al-Assad and his wife Asma. Asma, who was famously and glowingly profiled in Vogue just as her husband's brutal crackdown was reaching full force, does a whole lot of Internet shopping — jewelry, chandeliers, bespoke furniture, that sort of thing. Her husband also does a fair amount of e-commerce damage, but he's more into culture than jewels. Not only does the dictator display a remarkable insensitivity to the human suffering his regime has caused — one email shows him...
  • Nasrallah, Hamas: Israel 'Tested' Gaza Factions Ahead Of Possible Iran Strike

    03/14/2012 5:10:06 AM PDT · by edpc · 2 replies
    YNet ^ | 14 Mar 2012 | Elior Levy
    Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah met with senior Hamas figures on Monday to discuss regional developments, Lebanese newspaper Al-Sapir reported. According to the report, published Wednesday, Hamas' delegation was headed by Deputy Politburo Chief Moussa Abu Marzouk. The meeting in Lebanon focused on the latest round of violence between Israel and Gaza, the uprising in Syria and the Muslim Brotherhood's ties to Hezbollah and Iran.
  • Syrian Army Recaptures Idlib

    03/14/2012 12:28:42 AM PDT · by U-238 · 2 replies
    The Wall Street Journal ^ | 3/15/2012 | Associated Press
    The Syrian army has recaptured most of the northern rebel stronghold of Idlib near the Turkish border, pushing hundreds of military defectors out of a major base they had held for months even as pockets of resistance kept up their fight Tuesday. Members of the rebel Free Syrian Army gather in a mountainous area of the restive Idlib province in northwestern Syria. The three-day operation to capture the city followed closely after a similar offensive to dislodge the opposition from another key piece of territory it had controlled, the Baba Amr district in central Homs. The two victories gave President...
  • Afghan helicopter deal to be ended if Russia continues to arm Assad's Syria

    03/13/2012 9:53:07 PM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 13 replies
    Avio News ^ | 03/13/2012
    Afghan helicopter deal to be ended if Russia continues to arm Assad's Syria Washington, USA - Senators against this purchase due to Moscow's ambiguous policy (WAPA) - Despite Russia sent humanitarian aids to Syria its role in the tragic situation the Country is living is still ambiguous. In fact, 17 US' senators have sent a statement to Pentagon declaring the US' Department of Defense should drop a 900 million dollars contract to supply a Russian Mi-17 helicopter fleet to Afghanistan, since Moscow seems to be arming the regular Syrian Army, led by president Bashar al-Assad. John Cornyn, US senator, also...
  • Annan ends Syria visit with no clear progress

    03/12/2012 12:13:55 AM PDT · by U-238 · 4 replies · 1+ views
    Reuters ^ | 3/12/2012 | Dominic Evans
    U.N.-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan has ended talks with President Bashar al-Assad and left Syria with little sign of progress on halting the country's growing political bloodshed. "I am optimistic for several reasons," Annan said in Damascus on Sunday. "The situation is so bad and so dangerous that all of us cannot afford to fail." There was no clear response from Assad to Annan's "concrete proposals" for a ceasefire, dialogue and humanitarian aid. Assad told Annan opposition "terrorists" were blocking any political solution. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in New York on...
  • Syria's president holding firm

    03/10/2012 6:41:15 PM PST · by U-238 · 12 replies
    CNN Security Blog ^ | 3/10/2012 | Barbara Starr
    Despite reports of high-level defections of government and military officials, U.S. intelligence sees no signs of significant deterioration of support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad by his inner circle, senior U.S. intelligence officials said Friday. Read also: U.N. envoy to meet with Syria's president The officials, who would speak only on the condition that their names not be used, said that to date, the defections have been of lower-level officials and those in the military. None of those defections, including the group of military officers who are reported to have defected this week, are close enough to al-Assad to truly...
  • Homs devastation shocks UN humanitarian chief

    03/08/2012 1:17:00 PM PST · by nuconvert · 6 replies
    The United Nations humanitarian chief, Lady Amos, said she was shocked by the devastation she witnessed on a visit to Baba Amr, the suburb of the Syrian city of Homs that has suffered a month-long siege. -excerpt- She said: "The devastation there is significant. Part of Homs is completely destroyed and I am concerned to know what has happened to the people who live in that part of the city." -excerpt- The visit by Amos came as Syrian Arab Red Crescent aid workers entered Baba Amr to find it empty of its residents.
  • Kill the Messenger:What Russia taught Syria

    03/06/2012 10:22:50 PM PST · by U-238 · 28 replies
    Foreign Policy ^ | 3/2/2012 | Robert Young-Pelton
    It was a star-filled night in Chechnya's besieged capital of Grozny. The snow crunched under my feet as I walked with the Chechen rebel commander away from the warmth of our safe house. When we entered a bombed-out neighborhood 15 minutes away, I put the battery in my Iridium satellite phone and waited for the glowing screen to signal that I had locked on to the satellites. I made my call. It was short. Then the commander made a call; he quickly hung up and handed me back the phone. "Enough," he said, motioning for me to remove the battery....
  • Total Collapse

    03/02/2012 11:03:46 PM PST · by U-238 · 26 replies
    Weekly Standard ^ | 3/1/2012 | Lee Smith
    A number of recent articles make the case that the administration’s Syria policy is incoherent. Elliott Abrams says it’s worse than that: The White House’s position on Syria is duplicitous. Abrams looks at a series of recent interviews Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has given to the press about Syria, and identifies what appear to be the administration’s three reasons for not supporting the Syrian opposition. First is the administration’s concern that, according to Clinton, al Qaeda may have infiltrated the opposition. Second, she contends that arming the opposition is futile because given the regime’s firepower there is no way...
  • Syrian Army Using World’s Biggest Mortar Against Own People

    02/28/2012 10:53:42 PM PST · by U-238 · 43 replies · 1+ views
    Defense Tech ^ | 2/28/2012 | Defense Tech
    So the Syrian government, has been unable to break the back of a populist uprising using snipers, RPGs, tanks and aircraft has turned to lobbing massive 240 mm mortars into the city of Homs, killing dozens. This sounds like an old fashioned leave no one alive siege. In case there were any doubts, this shows that the Syrian dictatorship of Bashar al Assad is at war with his own people. Syrian troops are firing Soviet-made M240 breech loading mortars into the city. These fire the largest mortar rounds in the world, according to the Christian Science Monitor. To put things...
  • America's Alibis for Not Helping Syria

    02/28/2012 8:01:44 PM PST · by nuconvert · 9 replies · 1+ views
    Real Clear World/WSJ ^ | Feb. 25, 2012 | Fouad Ajami
    There are the Friends of Syria, and there are the Friends of the Syrian Regime. The former, a large group-the United States, the Europeans and the bulk of Arab governments-is casting about for a way to end the Assad regime's assault on its own people. In their ranks there is irresolution and endless talk about the complications and the uniqueness of the Syrian case. No such uncertainty detains the Friends of the Syrian Regime-Russia, Iran, Hezbollah and to a lesser extent China. In this camp, there is a will to prevail, a knowledge of the stakes in this cruel contest,...
  • China calls U.S. criticism over Syria "totally unacceptable"

    02/27/2012 6:36:21 AM PST · by nuconvert · 8 replies · 1+ views
    China on Monday called "totally unacceptable" U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's denunciation of its stand on Syria, and a top newspaper said that, after the Iraq war, Washington was "super arrogant" to claim to speak for Arab people. China's angry words came after Clinton on Friday called the Chinese and Russian veto of a U.N. resolution on Syria "despicable." "They are setting themselves not only against the Syrian people but also the entire Arab awakening," Clinton said of China and Russia, which have resisted Western and Arab calls to push Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from power.
  • To draw Iran into nuclear talks, Obama avoids ousting Assad

    02/26/2012 5:05:12 AM PST · by tired&retired · 17 replies · 1+ views
    Debka ^ | February 26, 2012 | Debka
    Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal did not hide his anger before marching out of the Friends of Syria conference attended by 70 nations in Tunis Friday, Feb. 24 after they fell in behind US plans for avoiding direct action against Syria’s Bashar Assad. Filmed sitting with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Saudi minister told a reporter that arming the Free Syrian Army was an “excellent idea” because they needed to defend themselves. Clinton remained frostily aloof on this obvious bone of contention. Riyadh is no happier with Moscow than it is with Washington. Saudi King Abdullah is...
  • Syrians Vote on New Constitution, Activists Boycotting

    02/26/2012 3:11:10 AM PST · by Eleutheria5
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 26/2/12 | Chana Yaark
    Syrians are voting Sunday on the draft of a new constitution that would limit the presidency to two seven-year terms, beginning with this year. The new constitution also theoretically calls for the creation of a multi-party system. Polls opened across the country at 7:00 a.m. Local time, and are scheduled to close 12 hours later. Some 14.6 million eligible voters have allegedly been asked to cast their ballots for or against the new constitution in more than 14,000 polling stations. The document was drafted to quiet the critics of the government's brutal year-long violent campaign against civilians protesting the regime...
  • Free Syria

    02/25/2012 6:08:51 AM PST · by nuconvert · 23 replies · 1+ views
    Weekly Standard ^ | Mar 5, 2012 | Lee Smith
    -excerpt- The death of a 56-year-old reporter who took dangerous assignments around the world might seem a small thing when more than 7,000 Syrians have been killed by their own government simply for living there. But the Damascus regime targets reporters for a reason: It is vulnerable, and its war on its own people is indefensible. To survive, Damascus needs the world to ignore what it is up to. It particularly needs indifference in Washington, where the Obama administration has seemed sadly oblivious to the fact that what a regime does at home is indicative of how it will act...
  • 60 civilians killed as Syrian forces pound Homs

    02/22/2012 6:28:04 AM PST · by nuconvert · 48 replies
    PakTribune ^ | Feb. 22, 2012
    Syrian government forces killed more than 60 people on Tuesday in assaults on villages and an artillery barrage in the restive city of Homs, activists said, and the Red Cross called for daily ceasefires to let in urgently needed aid. Activists said at least 30 people died in the bombardment of the Baba Amro, neighbourhood of Homs city, and at least 33 were killed when forces trying to crush opposition to President Bashar al-Assad stormed villages in northern Idlib province. In Damascus, security forces opened fire on demonstrators overnight, wounding at least four, activists said. Violence has hit the capital...
  • Obama administration opens door to aid for Syrian rebels

    02/21/2012 3:53:56 PM PST · by Hunton Peck · 7 replies
    Associated Press ^ | February 21, 2012 | unattributed
    The Obama administration opened the door slightly Tuesday to international military assistance for Syria's rebels, with officials saying new tactics may have to be explored if President Bashar Assad continues to defy pressure to halt a brutal crackdown on dissenters. In coordinated messages, the White House and State Department said they still hope for a political solution. But faced with the daily onslaught by the Assad regime against Syrian civilians, officials dropped the administration's previous strident opposition to arming anti-regime forces. It remained unclear, though, what, if any, role the U.S. might play in providing such aid. "We don't want...
  • For Syria, Reliant on Russia for Weapons and Food, Old Bonds Run Deep

    02/20/2012 5:41:38 PM PST · by U-238 · 8 replies
    NYT ^ | 2/18/2012 | David Herszenhorn
    As the violence in Syria worsened in recent days, amateur video showed the forces of President Bashar al-Assad rolling through the besieged city of Homs in vintage Soviet battle tanks. Other photographs, including satellite images released by the State Department, showed deployments of Soviet-designed truck-mounted rocket launchers and two models of a self-propelled howitzer whose sweet-scented names in Russian, Gvozdika and Akatsiya (Carnation and Acacia), are no reflection of their fearsome firepower. Seemingly undeterred by an international outcry, Moscow has worked frantically in recent weeks to preserve its relationship with the increasingly isolated government of Mr. Assad, even as the...
  • Iranian ships reach Syria, China warns of civil war

    02/20/2012 6:12:59 AM PST · by nuconvert · 46 replies · 1+ views
    China accused Western countries of stirring civil war in Syria and two Iranian warships docked at a Syrian naval base, underscoring rising international tensions over the near year-long crisis. -excerpt- "Hama is cut off from the outside world. There are no landlines, no mobile phone network and no internet. House to house arrests take place daily and sometimes repeatedly in the same neighborhoods," an opposition statement said.
  • Two Senators Say U.S. Should Arm Syrian Rebels [McCain & Graham]

    02/19/2012 6:49:38 PM PST · by Hunton Peck · 74 replies · 1+ views
    The New York Times ^ | February 19, 2012 | ALISSA J. RUBIN
    With the Syrian government continuing its deadly crackdown on its citizens, two senior American senators who were on their way to the Middle East spoke out strongly on Sunday in favor of arming the Syrian opposition forces. ¶ The senators, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, both Republicans, laid out a series of diplomatic, humanitarian and military aid proposals that would put the United States squarely behind the effort to topple President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. The senators, both of whom are on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said that rebel fighters deserved to be armed...
  • Venezuela ships fuel to war-torn Syria

    02/17/2012 12:59:17 AM PST · by U-238 · 6 replies
    Reuters ^ | 2/17/2012 | Reuters
    The government of Venezuela's Hugo Chavez is emerging as a rare supplier of diesel to Syria, potentially undermining Western sanctions and helping the Syrian government fuel its military in the middle of a bloody crackdown on civilian protests. A cargo of diesel, which can be used to fuel army tanks or as heating fuel, was expected to arrive at Syria's Mediterranean port of Banias this week, according to two traders and shipping data. The cargo could be worth up to $50 million. Chavez is a vociferous advocate of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who face pressure...
  • Video of Amb. Prosor at UN: Assad Starving Children to Death

    02/15/2012 4:23:33 AM PST · by Eleutheria5 · 6 replies
    Arutz Sheva ^ | 15/2/12 | Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
    Israeli Ambassador Ron Prosor told the United Nations Monday that Syrian children are dying from famine but that “they are not the tragic fatalities of a famine. They are not the accidental casualties of war. They are the deliberate targets of a brutal regime that will commit any crime and cross any line to cling to power.” “They look out at the camera with pleading eyes – desperate for help,” he said in a discussion on Syrian President Bashar Assad’s continuing brutal suppression of the 11-month-old rebellion. “Today I recall the images of infants and young children from the Baba...