Monday, September 26, 2011

Syria News Roundup

Interesting Panorama article about Syria on the BBC website: "Syria: 'Our Weapon is the Camera" in bloody revolution"

Note near the end of the article those interviewed are starting to believe increasingly in an armed response to the regime's violent crackdown. I think there have already been armed responses to the Syrian regime, but nothing widespread and intensive enough to be called an 'armed resistance' yet. I think this is a question of, "how many hairs make a beard?".

Turkey's Erdogan blasts Syria, Israel
I was surprised to hear Erdogan's very strong tone against the Syria's Bashar al Assad recently, mainly because it was after a long period of Turkish silence. This came close to the announcement that Turkey had seized a Syrian flagged vessel carrying arms (which is hardly going to hurt the regime). Apart from talk, it isn't clear to me how Turkey can influence Damascus to stop using violence against the people.

Turkish economic sanctions are looking set to take effect in October

This was interesting though, and highlights the Turkish ambiguity towards events in Syria:

Addressing another major international project, carrying Egyptian natural gas to Turkey through Jordan and Syria, sources said the government’s sanctions would not affect international plans unless the Syrian government wants to stop them.

Patriarch's remarks draw regional response as controversy persists
Storm in a teacup as a Lebanese Christian leader, Beshara Rai, says that the position of Christians in Syria will be imperilled if Assad's regime falls.

How to Protect Syria's Foreign Reserves

The ban on importing goods with a tariff of more than 5% reviewed in this article. Hints that the business community "is no longer with the regime" but likely to stay on the sidelines. Personally, my view is that the regime is reshuffling its cards to protect itself from the sanctions. Naturally they are feeling the pinch after over six months of protests, but it's still not clear how hard their pockets have been hit. But this ban is a staying action, meant to buy time - and he who needs to buy time can also run out of time...

Civil War becoming a real danger in Syria
Nothing more to say, the title of this article says it all really...

Gaddafi Daughter Says Father is Well
Notice it is on the Rai TV which is based in Syria. Somebody has an interest in helping the Libyan unrest continue for as long as possible...No points for guessing who.

Voice of America reports: "Russian FM: Important Not to Instigate Confrontation in Syria"
The geopolitical clash of the titans continues...

"Syrian regime protested at Arab culture festival"
Terribly worded title for an article with atrocious spelling mistakes. Not surprisingly, pro-regime protesters continue their attempt to intimidate anti-regime protesters:

“Some people that clearly work for the other side are taking pictures of people here, so that they can take it, send it back home for some kind of identification,” Al-smadi said.
I've seen the same thing happen in anti-regime protests in Syria, but these have stopped happening ever since the Times reported about the possible intimidation of Syrian anti-regime protesters by figures in the Syrian embassy and those associated with them.


Melody of Middleeast said...

Dear Maysaloon

I am writing on behalf of Dr. Imad Salamey Associate Professor of Political Science at Lebanese American University. My name is Naghmeh Mahmoudi, assistant of Dr. Salamey.

As part of a research program inspired by the Arab spring and protest movement in general Middle East, we are conducting interviews with protest movement leaders and activists who have organized mass action in 2011. The research program aims to determine main characteristics of the reform movement in terms of common and different traits across countries.

In connection to this, we would like to seek your assistance in recommending Syrian activists and protest leaders in-country or abroad who are willing to be publically interviewed for academic research purposes. We hope that you can help us locate possible participants. If you are an activist in or outside Syria, we would like to have you as a participant as well.

The interviews will be carried out via phone or email. We would thus appreciate relevant contact information.

Your support in this regard is very valuable, we’re hoping that the research findings will shed the lights on the main drivers for change in the Middle East and contribute to a greater understanding of contemporary Middle East.

I regret that I had to contact you through your blog, but I hope that you can provide me with your proper email. You can contact me on my email.

Best regard,
Naghmeh Mahmoudi
Research Assistant of Dr. Salamey, Lebanese American University
MA student in Contemporary Middle East Studies, University of Southern Denmark

Imad Salamey, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Political Science
Lebanese American University
P.O. Box 13-5053 Chouran
Beirut, Lebanon 1102-2801
Tel: 961-1-786-456 Ext: 1494
Fax: 961-1-867-098

Maysaloon said...

Dear Naghmeh,
I'm afraid I can't help you as I am not an activist and not involved with any political movements. I simply analyse and comment on the events in the Middle East. I wish you the best of luck with your research.