Monday, November 28, 2011

The Syrian News Roundup - Lite

The big news this week has been about the Arab League's imposing economic sanctions on Syria. In a nutshell, Syrian regime officials will no longer be able to travel to other Arab countries, and Syrian regime assets will be frozen wherever they are found. The League stressed that normal transfers from expatriate Syrians will still be allowed through, in the hope that the sanctions will have less of an effect on the average Syrian. Beirut and Baghdad have both rejected these sanctions, and it seems they will carry on business as usual with Assad's regime:

Sheikh Hamad said Arab nations wanted to avoid a repeat of what happened in Libya, where aU.N. Security Council resolution led to NATO air strikes. He warned other Arab states that the West could intervene if it felt the league was not "serious.""All the work that we are doing is to avoid this interference," he said.

There has been an alarming escalation in the language and condemnation of the gulf states by the regime's supporters and its television and media. A derogatory term عربان (Arabians) is being used to refer to them, and I think it carries with it the historical derision that city folk الحضر viewed the Bedouin البدو. The regime and its supporters see themselves as better and more civilized than the Gulf Arabs. 

If racist insults were the worst that this regime is capable of then I wouldn't be worried, but there are worrying signs and much darker clouds appearing on the horizon. In other news, DP-News, a news site sympathetic to the Syrian regime has reported that the Japanese beat Syria in the London 2012 Olympic soccer qualifier.


Anonymous said...

Dear brother, I feel very concerned about the situation in Syria. Surely I don't have all the elements in order to understand better what's happening there, but I am against a foreign intervention in Syria. I wonder if the regime is willing to implement reforms. I hope so. Israel could benefit from fitna between communities, between Turkey and Syria for a further intervention against Iran. Fitna is our worst ennemy. Salam.

Maysaloon said...

I appreciate how difficult it must be for you to get accurate information in what must be the most confusing and heavily contested Arab revolution so far. Unfortunately I do not share your optimism about reform by the regime, and after eight months I have found no evidence that Assad is sincere about reform. Instead I have found a consistent program of repression, torture and mass arrests.