"Syria says Ambush Kills 5 Security Personnel" - right...and it is true because SANA says so. If you don't believe SANA then you're probably not a patriot, and not really Syrian, and probably working for the Mossad and the CIA and al Qaeda.
"ONGC mulls bringing its Syrian oil to India" according to sources speaking to Reuters
Well, India is often cited as a 'friend' by the Syrian regime so this move does make sense. As one company man there says, it's a "win-win" situation. Of course, India is farther from Syria than Europe is, and that will make the oil a little bit more expensive for that company. It's not a permanent solution, and I'm pretty sure ONGC will probably wrangle a good deal from themselves since they have the Syrian suppliers by the balls. So, overall, I doubt how effective this move will be for the Syrian regime in the long run. It will also be interesting to see how the unilateral European and American sanctions might start to creep onto those Indian companies doing business with the regime. There is no way this would happen yet, but if things begin to escalate, then it just might be an option. Let's see. Of course this does show that oil revenues are very important to the Syrian regime, and the loss of the European markets required an almost immediate replacement to keep those revenues coming in.
David Cameron recently took a tougher line in his first UN speech. Mentioning Syria he said, "Above all, on Syria, it is time for the Members of the Security Council to act". Of course Mr Cameron didn't have a problem with tyrants when he was visiting Putin a few days ago. Nor did Blair have a problem with Gaddafi when he met him in a tent in the Libyan desert and sorted out a tasty deal for BP. Yes, Libyan oil was available for the West before the Libyan revolution, and yes, Western leaders are hypocritical, but that's the nature of the beast. If the Syrians want to get rid of Assad, they will have to capitalise on whatever political currency they can get.
A clip on al Jazeera English showing the family of the "Israeli spy" that Syrian television paraded on air. Apparently he was instrumental in the killing of Imad Mughniyeh, Hezbullah's man, a few years back. I think the Syrian claims are nonsense on stilts, as are all their on-air "confessions". Somebody should tell them that these things went out of fashion around the time that Stalin died.
And next we have the often forgotten victims of these revolutions: 21 Filipinos are arriving back home from Syria. The Filipino Department of Foreign Affairs is urging its citizens to leave Syria (apparently there are 17,000 Filipino nationals there). I guess Madam is going to have to do her own dishes from now on, which should go down a treat.
The WSJ has a silly article about how the Maronite Church in Lebanon has "long supported independence from dictatorship and military occupation". There is a political spectrum in Lebanon that is licking its lips with relish at the problems happening in Syria, and I find their mock indignation at the plight of the Syrian people quite tasteless. I don't recall them expressing such horror at the treatment of Syrian workers in Lebanon.
Some are beginning to say that the Syrian demonstrations are losing steam, and that this might drive the protesters to adopt more violent means.
”Idlibi, who forcefully argued for the non-violent nature of the protest movement, nevertheless added that the “delay of the international community in clearly supporting the Syrian revolution could lead to a deviation from the peaceful line.”I liked this paragraph about Syria in an article from the Washington Times website:
The more I read about Syria and its history, the more I find it to be the very embodiment of the Arab peoples and their grisly, twisted fate. Not only is its ethnic makeup a microcosm of the Middle East, a jumble of ethnicities and religions; not only is it ruled, like so many other Arab states, by a ruthless minority, and along tribal lines; but, above all, Syria exemplifies the historic dispossession of the Arab peoples. The French occupiers carved the map of ancient Syria as they saw fit, slicing a piece off to Turkey and cutting off a big chunk to form Lebanon, an illegitimate entity in Syrian eyes. The loss of the Golan Heights to Israel is only the most recent happening in a never-ending historical drama in which, whatever happens, eventually, Syria gets royally screwed.Benjamin Ra then concludes that the demise of the Syrian regime to be a great loss to both the region and to the United States. Apparently he's worried about instability there spilling over into Iraq or something like that. Somebody should tell him why Iraq was so unstable following the Iraqi invasion in the first place...
The "New York Jewish Week" has a predictably non-sympathetic view on Syrian-Iranian relations. Nothing new here. Just more spiel about how terrifying an Iranian nuclear programme would be and blah, blah, blah. Oy vey!