Sunday, January 08, 2006

The Economy (January 11, 2006)

French proposal to bring calm and stability back to Lebanon:" Shebaa

Al Manar, a weekly Palestinian newspaper, reported on January 9 that, “the French government has been making secret increased calls to several Arab countries and to Israel to discuss with them a plan Paris has set to bring back calm and stability to Lebanon. The plan includes Israel pulling out of the Shebaa Farms and a new international force spreading on the Lebanese-Israeli border. Also, according to prominent sources, the plan includes a specification of the way Hezbollah would work, and the organization of its armed members as a first step for Hezbollah to disarm.”

The sources also revealed that some of the Arab countries support and approve the French plan and will carry an active role to make this plan succeed. But, these countries informed France of the danger of intensifying blame and threats of a blockade and of pressures to be upheld against Syria, because this is what will make the situation worse in the region and threaten its stability as a whole. - Al Manar Palestine, Palestine
Click here for source
Report says Saudi officials are trying to stifle Khaddam's statements
The Palestinian owned daily Al Quds Al Arabi reported on January 7 that: "Saudi media sources have reported that the Saudi Information Ministry has issued instructions to the media organs it finances to stop focusing on the statements of former Syrian Vice-President Abd-al-Halim Khaddam who called for bringing down the regime in Damascus. The sources that refused to be identified said the Syrian regime expressed its discontent with and resentment of the Saudi media for starting and adopting Khaddam's campaign to distort the image of the regime and its President Bashar al-Asad.

"Saudi King Abdallah Bin-Abd-al-Aziz made two telephone calls on Thursday to Syrian President Bashar al-Asad and Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak during which they discussed the situation in Syria. The sources said the Syrian president reproached King Abdallah for what he called the Saudi media's adoption of Khaddam's position." - Al Quds Al Arabi, United Kingdom
The As-sharq al-Awsat interview with Khaddam is here thanks to

Syria: Investing Ahead
6 January 2006
By Oxford Business Group

As pressure mounted on Damascus over the continuing UN inquiry into the assassination of Lebanon's former prime minister, this week saw the US renew its threats of sanctions against Syria.

Yet just what kind of an impact such steps might have has already been called into question - and by none other than the director of Syria's own investment authority. Dubbing 2005 the year of investment in his country, Mustafa al-Kafri recently cited bumper levels of foreign and local interest.

The US comments on the possibility of sanctions came in the wake of a UN request to interview President Bashar al-Assad in connection with the inquiry into the February 2005 slaying of Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese premier.

The UN request followed allegations of Syrian threats against Hariri made by former Syrian Vice-President Abdelhalim Khaddam in a recent interview with al-Arabiya TV. The UN also wishes to interview Foreign Minister Farouk al-Sharaa.

If Syria were to turn down the request, the US envoy to the UN, John Bolton, warned on January 3 that the Security Council has made it clear that it expects full and unconditional compliance and said expressly in its resolution that additional measures could be taken if need be.

Syria has been given until January 10 to comply with the UN request. On January 5, Damascus announced that it had agreed to let the UN investigators question al-Sharaa. However, no announcement has been made so far regarding any interview with Assad.

Meanwhile though, recent statements by al-Kafri seem to indicate that despite the enormous international pressure, the country's economy has not been doing too badly at all in recent months.

Speaking at a meeting of experts on foreign direct investment (FDI) at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) in Beirut in late December, al-Kafri said that 2005 had in fact been an excellent year for FDI in Syria. He said that year-end figures were expected to show a 30% rise in FDI, year-on-year. There were $2bn of investments this year in Syria, which is an important figure, he told the assembled experts.

This represents a significant upward shift the historic level of FDI flow to the country. Financial expert Farhat Hourshani told the meeting that these flows had reached just $181.6m on average annually since 1999 and had been relatively weak and focused on excavation and oil production.

The main source for FDI, al-Kafri added, was Saudi Arabia - although there were also significant investments coming from the UAE, Turkey and other European countries, such as Germany.

At the same time, domestic investors had also been active. In September alone, he said, 70 projects, worth a total $1.6bn, had been presented to the Superior Investment Council by local investors and granted approval.

Al-Kafri also highlighted plans for a $15bn tourist resort to be built on the 2814-metre-high Mount Hermon, which overlooks the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and southern Lebanon.

Al-Kafri did not reveal many details of the project's backers, except to say that it would be developed by an unspecified group of Syrian, Kuwaiti and Saudi investors. He also added that Damascus had given its tentative backing to the project.

The scheme will include hotels, shopping centres, skiing and other sports facilities reachable by cable car, and is expected to be carried out over the next 15 years. Such projects - if carried through - would help Syria tackle a number of problems simultaneously. Providing jobs for a growing population is one of these, while FDI in tourism also stimulates a whole range of associated industries. This is key to achieving the kind of economic growth rates many see as necessary to keep the country developing. Economists estimate that $8bn to $9bn in investment is needed each year to produce a 7% GDP growth rate in Syria, compared with around 4% growth currently.

Yet if ever there was a good time to be looking for investment from the region - and the Gulf in particular - this must surely be it. With most economists predicting a fifth consecutive boom year, with high oil prices and bull markets up and down the Gulf, there is no shortage of liquidity within the Arab world for investments in schemes such as Mount Hermon. What effect UN sanctions might have in this regard is open to question, but clearly Damascus is putting a brave face on the prospect.

Pressure on Syria has had a weak impact on the economy this year, al-Kafri said. He will doubtless be hoping to be able to say the same thing at the end of 2006.

Syria's workforce grows amid woes

DAMASCUS, Syria, Jan. 10 (UPI) -- Syria's workforce has increased by a million to 5 million since 1994, as official capacity to create new jobs dropped, resulting in 70 percent unemployment among youth.

The official Tishreen newspaper Tuesday published a report on a study it prepared showing the rate of workforce growth exceeded the rate of population growth.

The paper said the workforce increased from 4 million in 1994 to 5 million in 2004.

It said the percentage of working women also increased during the same period from 12.8 percent to 17.3 percent.

The report said the main problem affecting the market was the low educational levels of workers as 68.3 percent of the workforce held only elementary studies certificates.

The study also indicated that overall unemployment increased from 2.8 percent in 1999 to 12.3 in 2004 and that unemployment among youth between 15 and 24 reached more than 70 percent.

Meanwhile, the government's capacity to create new jobs decreased. Some 200,000 jobs were created annually between 1990 and 1995 compared to 160,000 between 1999 and 2003.

Syria cleric urges Assad on reforms
United Press International - DAMASCUS, Syria, Jan. 10 (UPI)

A senior Syrian Muslim cleric has called on President Bashar Assad to take decisive measures to combat corruption and boost reformists.

Speaking on the first day of Eid al-Adha feast, which marks the end of the annual pilgrimage to Mecca, Sheikh Haitham Adlabi told an audience of worshippers, including Assad, Tuesday, "The Syrian people await from the president ... necessary moves for deterring violators and the corrupt and boosting honest reformists."

Adlabi avoided in his feast sermon a direct reference to the international pressure on Syria to introduce reforms, stressing support to "the efforts for steadfastness and stability led by President Assad in defense of the nation."

But he called on Assad "to act in the interest of the nation and the people and to defeat its enemies."

Adlabi was apparently calling on Assad to introduce long-delayed political and economic reforms.


At 1/10/2006 07:38:00 PM, Blogger ghassan said...

In the highly competitive world of the twenty first century people in Syria are still looking to government to create jobs!!!! Such a mentality is just as much out of touch with reality as the Syrian regime is. Governemts cannot create jobs and should not even attempt it. Whenever they do they inevitably wind up in creating the wrong jobs in the wrong sectors. These mistakes that are often committed by government whenevr it tries to perform in an area that is outside its sphere of expertise then the cost is carried by the working citizens.One reason that the Syrian economy is close to the bottom in terms of practically all economic metrics is the fact that it remains one of the very few economioes in the world where the government; and an unelected, undemocratic one for that has its fingers in every pie. Statism has failed miserably in the Soviet Union,in Easter Europe and it sure has failed in Syria. Other countries have admitted their mistakes and taken corrective action, Syria has not.

At 1/10/2006 07:39:00 PM, Blogger Nafdik said...

I know what I am going to say will make the target of a lot of angry responses, but here it is:

The solution to Syria problem is to put Khaddam in power.

What is the problem I am referring to?

How to we transit from the current regime to a democratic system without risking civil war or bloodshed.

Currently the regime is identified with the Alawi minority, and the only organised opposition are the MBs. If the regime is toppeled through revolution there is a very real danger of persecution of the Alawis. The Alawis being well armed and in control of the army will have to defend themselves.

Before changing the regime we need to create a multi-sectarian cleptocracy that will allow the Syrian poeple to stop associating one community with its problem.

Who better to head this new and glorious direction for our nation than Mr Cleptocrate himself.

Once this is done and Khaddam and his cronies join in the pie. Revolution will be easier as the power base will be diffused and a peaceful transition will be most likely as we will be all equally guilty in the demise of our nation.

At 1/10/2006 08:17:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Nafdik, Egypt is not run by Allawis, yet the first political force in the country is the MB.

At 1/10/2006 08:24:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/10/2006 08:29:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Being an Alawi my self, I can ell you that after listening to the telephone call that General (excuse my ignorance: Doctor) Bahjat Sleiman to the Jazeera's program which I heard, following this link which I found pointed to by a couple of sites:

made me truly understand how Sunnis became such haters of Alawis. He depicts the true stereotype that is spread about Alawis, and his tone and lack of common sense, and love to be a dictator even on a TV show is quite amazing. He also portrays the complex some Syrians have, may be more with Alawis than others, I am not sure, of having titles and being called a Doctor. Just listen to what he says in his call. He was quite ridiculous, and disgusting.

I am convinced that the only cure for Syria is to rid it from this truly retarded regime, and let us pay a price. Freedom is never free.

Thank you


At 1/10/2006 08:49:00 PM, Blogger gangof2006 said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/10/2006 08:56:00 PM, Blogger Nafdik said...

I agree Vox and I think that Egypt is one step closer to democracy than us.

It possible for example for MBs or other political groups to infiltrate the army. It is also possible to create a climate of gradual change, as there is no clear cut line between the regime and the population.

Please do not interpret this as being for or against alawis, Saddam regime was not any better than Syria. In fact the rise of these minorities to power is very remeniscent of Ibn Khaldoun theory of the stages of power, but that is another topic altogether.

At 1/10/2006 10:09:00 PM, Blogger norman said...

I do not know why everybody blames the Alawat or the Baath party for all of Syria,s problems ,the economy in Syria has been controled by the Sunni since 1963 while the security sevices and the army was controled by the alawat,the problem in Syria is a one party system and what coruption that brings ,in the US recently Abramove who is a lobiest pleaded guilty and agreed to cooperate ,the republican party has been in power only for five years and coruption seems to wide spread the majority leader in congress and the republican senate leaders to many others in congres even the president was acused of breaking the law and spying on Americans,what i am trying to Say is that power corupt Syrian ,american ,Sunni, Alawy ,so syria needs reform aplied on a local level first then on a national level , i do not want take too long but reforming the political system in Syria does not and should not enclude the corupt Khadam.

At 1/10/2006 10:23:00 PM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

“ …Al-Kafri also highlighted plans for a $15bn tourist resort to be "built on the 2814-metre-high Mount Hermon, which overlooks the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and southern Lebanon.

Al-Kafri did not reveal many details of the project's backers, except to say that it would be developed by an unspecified group of Syrian, Kuwaiti and Saudi investors….."

The first Question is, did Bashar sell the Golan Height for 15.5 Blns. a billion a year for 15 years, or is he just bluffing the Jews into showing them that he will make Syrians servants, waiters, bartenders, hotel room and bathroom cleaners for the Middle Class Jews who will come to ski on the mount. It is obvious that if he is planning that kind of investment, unheard of and unprecedented in Syria and for it’s mean, he have no plan to go to war and fight the Jews for the Golan. This is maybe the backbone of the Syrian-Israeli-American hush hush secret deal that kept Syria out of U.N. trouble and U.S. under Israeli orders instantly mum.

The type of investment and it’s peculiar location is troubling. I do not believe sufficient number of Syrians will vacation there, enough to make this 15.5 Billion Dollar viable investment. Nor I see Arabs flocking in when Lebanon is right next hill. European? they got the Alps. So who is kidding here.

In my business experience with Syrian businesses, (did business with over 150 company, before sep 11) None of them had the modern machinery, modern packaging or ready inventory to sell and earn hard currencies. Most importantly, none of them can extend 120 days credit, the minimum required to do business on an international level.

Spending 15.5 Billion Dollar on setting up the Syrian equivalent to EXIMABANK to provide commercial credit for export business would provide far more jobs and ever growing economy. 15.5 Billion in the hand of traders and export managers will turn into few hundred Billions in 10 years, keeping this capital turning and rotating. Taiwan and China is good example of this job creating investment strategy.

Investing in capital good and machinery to manufacture products that are normally imported. Finance the investment and establishment in Syria of Orontes Defense Corporation, in three years no one will buy the security and defense crap made by the USA, Russia and France and certainly no one will touch the Israeli technologies that were built without licenses using espionage obtained technologies. Syria’s revenue from the export of Orontes Defense Systems to Iran and the Gulf states will be over 5 Billion Dollar, outpacing ROSONBORONEXPORT in less than a decade. This also will provide enormous technical and scientific employment base for Syria to draw upon. Taking Syria into the modern age of technology and economy. Sweden economy is built on the commercial activities of 6 corporations and Finland’s got NOKIA.

Of course that will not serve the Israeli or the American and French arm exporter so Syrians are fucked again and relegated into cleaning restrooms of the Jewish visitors to the “Mount Hermon Resort and Spa Center” I did say that Dardari is gone farther than Cohen in the Baath party system.

My feeling is a deal struck and the Jews conditions is will buy the Golan and will pay 15.5 Billion and the money will have to be invested right here on the mount. What they did not tell Bashar is the second half of this plan. Will take over the mount and bring half a million Russian Jews to live up there.

At 1/10/2006 10:27:00 PM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

( A California Corporation)
TEL: 949–709–4023 Email: Web:

From: Metaz K.M.Aldendeshe
Tel: 949-584-2850



I would like to introduce an investment opportunity and seek your assistance in presenting this rare technology to the business acquaintances in Syria and Lebanon.

Attached in this letter is an Executive Summary and description of the patented technology. The Patents were issued in Ireland, United Kingdom, United States and China. It is currently Patent Pending in Brazil.

There is a simple Business Plan that is designed to minimize initial start up cost, reduce operating expenses and maximize return on the investment.

The manufacturing of the actual hardware will be sourced out in China on contractual basis, whereby the cost is based on actual cost per unit with no added expenses for setting up a plant and hiring of technicians. Only software elements, partial assembly and configuration will be based in the United States. The location will also serve as the base for all North American marketing, sales and service operations. An optional offshore location, independent from the USA company, such as a Bahamian IBC Shell Company, can be established to control the worldwide sales and revenue. It will secure a better profit margin, considering the tax liabilities.

The initial funding required is $300,000. It will cover the cost of producing market ready generator units and all initial corporate setup, such as: an office space, hiring a team of 3 engineers and 3 marketing specialists, who will be working on independent contract basis ( with an optional full time availability at a later stage of the company and product development).

Additional funding of $300,000 will be required in 9-month period, when generators will be ready for mass production. The funding is required for sales and marketing expenses, until the revenue is generated from the sales of generators, and the company is self sufficient and profitable.

Various dealers, that we have contacted worldwide, have expressed tremendous interest in becoming authorized dealers for the Orontes Hybrid Generator.

The attached Executive Summary contains detailed information; should you have any questions, please contact me without hesitation. The contact information is shown above.



At 1/10/2006 11:04:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

ورغم الانتقادات التي انهالت على "نواب الشعب السوري" لأنهم تأخروا في فتح ملفات خدام، تركت حماسة بعض أعضاء المجلس مثل الدكتور محمد حبش وغيره أثرا بالغا على السوريين في "جمهورية الفلافل" الذين ما انفكوا يطالبون منذ سنوات الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد بتفعيل حملات الفساد لتطال السوريين في "مملكة القلاع والقصور"، والذين يصفهم بعض أبناء الشعب السوري بأنهم يرفعون شعار التطوير وخطابات الأسد في النهار، وفي الليل يسخرون من الاصلاح ويعقدون الصفقات.

ويقصد السوريون بـ"جمهورية الفلافل" شرائح الشعب التي تعيش في مستوى معيشي منخفض؛ من حيث فقدان فرص العمل والفقر وغياب فرص أخرى متاحة لأبناء المسؤولين وحدهم. إذ أن السوريين الذين يعيشون تحت خط الفقر، يتزاحمون أمام محلات الفلافل الشعبية التي تعتبر أكثر المطاعم ازدحاما وهي مؤشر كاف للتمايز الطبقي في سورية. ولعل أحد ملامح هذا الفقر في الشارع السوري أن بعض أساتذة الجامعات يركضون في الشوارع وراء حافلات النقل العام لأنهم لا يقدرون على شراء سيارات خاصة. وهذه المشكلة أشرف الرئيس الأسد على حلّها شخصياً، فأصدر مرسوما منذ أيام يقضي بزيادة رواتب أساتذة الجامعات في شكل كبير، بحيث وصلت رواتب بعضهم إلى 60 ألف ليرة سورية، وهو راتب جيد كما رآه المراقبون الاقتصاديون قياسا إلى المعيشة الرخيصة نسبيا

At 1/10/2006 11:07:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Excellent comment regarding this so called "investment" for a tourist site at the edge of the Golan heights, made by Metaz.

This regime does not have the interests of ordinary Syrians, the majority, in any way, and yes, that is what they are planning for syrians, to be waiters, bus boys, and so on...beside the prostitutions that this regime has nourished and nurtitured for Syrian, and iraqi women.

In addition, this should tell that this regime is not really scared of falling soon. It seems that there is something going on as a deal to truly enslave Syrians for a very long time.

Thank you metaz.


At 1/10/2006 11:11:00 PM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

وصلت رواتب بعضهم إلى 60 ألف ليرة سورية،
Is that Monthly or Annually? ooooohh well, that is in Lira, that is 1000 per month.

Hey, they can afford $600 a night at Dardari's Mount Hermon Resort and Spa Center, the new Internationsl Mamouth Vail Reviera resort. But no hookers, that is for the rich Bedouins

At 1/10/2006 11:17:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

hehehehehhe, JAM is right, Metaz missed the Five Star KARAKHANEH that will be costing few Billion at the resort center, Saudi must be envolved for sure, that explain the high price tag, all those golden HARRIM ROOM.

At 1/11/2006 12:08:00 AM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

I met two Syrian Sunnis (brothers) at a party a few days ago (the first non-Christian Syrians I ever talked to in my whole life). Supposedly, they are the best of what Syria has to offer. Not religious, western-educated, fluent in foreign languages etc... Yet they hatred for Allawite was greater than I had imagined at first. And these were educated Syrians. Things aren't going to be smooth if the MB takes over.

At 1/11/2006 12:17:00 AM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

Excerpt from the Guardians, U.K.….
“Nearby, workers were slaughtering hundreds of sheep to start the Eid. Saudi authorities have instituted a system whereby pilgrims purchase a coupon costing about $120. Sheep purchased through the system are slaughtered at special facilities and distributed to the needy. “
“In the Egyptian capital, Cairo, blood poured across sidewalks, apartment-building stairwells and rooftops as families slaughtered sheep and cows for the holiday. At shops strung with holiday lights, butchers used bicycle pumps to inflate the freshly killed livestock and separate the skin from the meat. Brightly-lit pleasure boats on the Nile were packed with families heading out for holiday picnics. “

Coupon!!! This is inhumane, spiritually and morally bankrupt.

There are more than 350,000 species of nuts, seeds, fruit and vegetable on this planet. If you believe in GOD, then you should understand that he created these for you to eat and live of it, not to walk on it. The barbaric idea that human needs to kill and eat meat (flesh) to survive, is inherited from a bygone era, during the lengthy Ice Age period, man in some areas of the planet had to survive, they had no seeds and Animals were the only available source of food that can be hunted. It was a means of survival.

We get all of today deadly diseases from eating flesh. Plants and seeds offer a more nutrient food source that is much more healthy and never make man sick.

The Spiritual value of the Slaughter and sacrifice using Government purchased “COUPONS” is bankrupt. The immoral-commercially oriented Saudi family that introduced this “COUPON” method of sacrifice and slaughter is running yet another San Heedran and Saducee or Modern day Christian Catholic commercial scam, clothed in religious practices.

I am not going to discuss the Abraham story, because it has no historic accuracy. But if say GOD requested and introduce this sacrifice of animals idea, because it is as atonement of sin or otherwise. Let me remind you that he ordered the individual to make his own kill, slaughter and to pray to him and for the life of the Animal and say the “SHIHADA”. This is because GOD wants man to understand the nature of killing, the sacrifice, and that it should be only in the name of GOD and for GOD. He wanted man to understand that killing for other purposes is not acceptable. He also wanted to bring compassion into man’s heart and graphically demonstrate to man the nature of killing.

The idea that a person, will pay for a “COUPON” so that some worker supposedly slaughter a sheep for him at the Saudi Facilities awhile he is sitting in the comfort of his air conditioned Sheraton and Marriott Hotel room, defeats the very same purpose of which GOD could have introduced this practice and the intended purpose that he wanted man to feel and know.

As to committing this slaughter for the sin atonement purposes, How can such sinful act of killing and blood spilling in the street be a payoff for other sins that man committed. How about paying for those sins by taking a more positive deed that will payoff the negative sinful deed committed by man. Such as raising a sheep or Ten of them, impregnating one female one and let it enjoy the wonderful motherhood. Plant a tree or a forest and let it grow, plant a fruit tree or a hundred of them and let the trees bring abundance of fruits for those that never had the money to even buy it.

This Moslem practice, were inherited from older religion of the Jews-Hebrew, this Saudi “COUPON” deal is more like what the Jewish Sadducee and the San Heedran of the Israeli Temple would have came up with. In fact they came up with all sort of this stuff that institutionalized religion and made it into enterprise totally devout of any personal experience between man and his GOD. They were destroyed.

This “COUPON” is just as commercial and devout of the intended spiritual experience and value as the pressing the play button, on of the tape recorder, to mechanically play the “Shihada” at the New Zealand Slaughter House by a Buddhist Chinese laborer, before switching on the electric blade to slaughter the poor Animal. Is this really “HALAL”

In both cases this is not what GOD intended purpose. For as long as there is no direct involvement of the individual with his god, the practice is nothing more than cheating GOD and man.

Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe
Syrian Republican Party
The enlighten one

P.S. Yes I am strict Vegetarian, no meat, no fish, no chicken, no eggs, no butter and no raw milk.
Also I am chairman of International Ethical treatment of Animal. Which this article is written on behalf.

At 1/11/2006 12:21:00 AM, Blogger Alawites for Syria said...

Lucky you, you met those Syrian Sunni Marsians for the first time in your whole life? Is it true that they are Green giants with rabit ears? No wonder why Alawites cage them, shouts them and kill them.

At 1/11/2006 12:38:00 AM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Alawites for Syria I know plenty of Syrians (excluding Syrian worker in Lebanon, I hardly had any conversations with them), but they are all Christians (and some are part of my family by the way).

At 1/11/2006 12:39:00 AM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

"P.S. Yes I am strict Vegetarian, no meat, no fish, no chicken, no eggs, no butter and no raw milk."

Why no raw milk? Are you feeling guilty for the baybe cow?

Ain't no better meal than a good burger.

At 1/11/2006 01:26:00 AM, Blogger EngineeringChange said...

Vox, incredible, so you talked to Sunni Muslim Syrians!!?? Were you frightened? I must commend you for 'reaching out' to the 'other' and implore you to continue your efforts. But at least they were not religious (the best Syria has to offer of course). Imagine you had talked to a religious Syrian--but that would be just too much for you to bear! Lets hope you are never subjected to the prescence of a religious Syrian!

I truly appreciate your open-mindedness and just wanted to commend you on it.

At 1/11/2006 01:27:00 AM, Blogger annie said...


You say "
let us pay a price. Freedom is never free"

You are not the one who is going to pay the most. Things are better under Bashar. Let's have free elections and like Idaf predicted he is going to win them but he will have to share with the opposition.
True, there is no reason to hate Allawis as a group; they have shared power with the Sunnis and many of them have not made a cent out of the regime.

At 1/11/2006 01:34:00 AM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

"Vox, incredible, so you talked to Sunni Muslim Syrians!!??"


"Were you frightened?"

-Not really, they were so thin that I could lift them with one hand

"I must commend you for 'reaching out' to the 'other' and implore you to continue your efforts."

Thank you. But I really didn't reach for anybody. The guys were just sitting on the same sofa.

"But at least they were not religious (the best Syria has to offer of course). Imagine you had talked to a religious Syrian--but that would be just too much for you to bear!"

Considering the party I was in, it would have been hard to find any religious guy in it. But yes, the less religious your are, the better you are.

"Lets hope you are never subjected to the prescence of a religious Syrian!"

Maybe I will. On the battlefield.

At 1/11/2006 03:56:00 AM, Blogger Innocent_Criminal said...


The one and only thing I agree with you on is that the less religious you are the better. But here starts the slicing and dicing…

I HATE to generalize but your comments are typical of a Lebanese racist. You are confined to your own cocoon like a cowered judging from within and never daring to venture outside. Defining people not only by their religion but even their damn sect, god it almost makes me wanna vomit (all over you). its really quiet impressive how blind one person can be to his/her own closed mindedness. Let me just tell you one thing very clearly and its 100% accurate and no one can come close to discrediting it. YOU DONT KNOW SHIT about what’s the best Syria has to offer. Get off that pedestal that unfortunately many French-speaking Christian Lebanese try to stand on. Speaking three languages does not necessarily make you more cultured; it can very well mean (like in your case) three ways to express your ignorance. Now repeat after me I AM A RACIST good boy, accepting that you have a problem is the first step to solving it.

At 1/11/2006 07:31:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/11/2006 07:40:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This Criminal is always here to pretend being civiized and decides who is "racist" and who is good. Yet, he supports the most savage regime that Syria has ever known, and what Vox has stated is absolutely true. After years and years of "real" friendship between an Alawi and a Sunni, the Sunni, and for the slightest reason when there is a fight with his alawi friend will "ashame" his old friend of being "alawi". Here on this same comment section, I was attacked by a Sunni who supposedly opposed the regime by telling me that he knew from the start what a faked opposition I am, and that I am as an Alawi opposition must be of the refuse of Assad, probably, and most certainly belonging to Rifaat Assad.

That area of the world has always seen religious and ethenic fights, and its people are unable to jump to the modern age. Another manifestation of their narrow look at other human beings is their classifications of so called "families" that even Joshua Landis got involved like he was one of them in the previous thread. Syrians are not only sectarianists, but look at how they want to analyse some one they meet at first hand, where he is from, what city, what neighbourhood, what family because the degree they deal with each other is all based on what information they get fromm their questions, and how far from their background this person is. what is more amazing is that they attack France and the US for some experiences they had there related to some prejudices or some laws such as not allawing a veiled girl to attend school, and forget their own racist and narrow mindedness, and how in Muslim countries such as Saudi arabia, foreign women and girls are forced to wear the black evil veil, and people have to get a special permission to visit another town inside the country, a thing that I wish the US reciprocacte to the Saudi citizen, and limit their freedom when they come to the US. Yes, unfortunately, I also have to admit that all of the above and my personal experiences with many of sunnis out side of Syria made me believe that there is no hope for that species.


At 1/11/2006 07:50:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

And Vox, count your blessings !! Honestly.

At 1/11/2006 08:24:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

I think Nafdik is among the few who has touched upon a useful discussion (breaking away from the pissing contest). Nafdik, regarding your proposed solution for the intermediate step, I have a question for you: What would happen if Khaddam (or his likes for that matter) were to cling on to power and never let go as he starts a legacy of his own family? (in case you have not figured it out, I am setting you up to make faulty projections in case you answer the way I think you will so be careful :)

Also, to answer a previous question of yours (which you directed to me), yes social elitism is prevalent in our society, be it Damascene, Coastal, or Aleppine, etc. This exists almost in every society I have been exposed to. It does exist to the least extent in the US, however. Since it is a relatively new society, and most of its immigrants started off on equal footing (more or less). That's why there is more elitism in Europe than the US for example (among other reasons of course which could also include being under a monarchy at some point who usually promotes these types of ranking). As for Arabs, you know how we love our tribes, be them real tribes (a la Shimmar, 3nezi, etc.), or be them city-based (Damascene vs. Aleppine vs. Lattakian, etc.) or even sometimes neighborhood-based (Meedani vs. Salhani, etc.) Do I condone it? In some of its forms, yes I do. When faced with a disaster (esp. of national caliber), people tend to fall back on their tribes and tribal leaders (case in point today's Iraq). Another example in a less polarized setting is when say, two Damascene merchants have a business dispute, they call in an arbitrator from a well-known Damascene family (al-Rifa3i family comes to mind) who is well-versed not only in business, but also in sharia and local customs. You may have been offended by my earlier implication of why a Damascene family would lose some of its "Damasceness"-reputation by allowing an inter-sectarian marriage to take place, but this could go both ways. The same applies to a coastal family allowing a Damascene to marry from them. Yeah true, some families don't mind, but many do from both sides. And not to mention the actual individual and his own crappy reputation (Majd Saliaman) and how he could bring disgrace to any family he marries into. I did not make up the rules, that how they exist. But I think you already know that, it sounded like. But people (especially Western-educated) seem to have developed an overly sensitive and a misplaced sense of political correctness that they wish not even hear anything about this. Not that there is anything wrong with political correctness, but it is misplaced when applied to our societies. Once we are the democratic, lawful, and just societies that most Western societies are, then there is no harm in political correctness as it is a form of protecting the minorities and the disadvantaged. Meanwhile, we still have to work on the rights and the protection of the majority of Syrians.

At 1/11/2006 08:29:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

One of the most fascinating aspect of Muslims hypocrisy is the Belly Dancing.

While Muslims are so protective of their women, obliging them to wear the evil veils, Mulsims throughout their history pride themselves with watching other women perform the belly dancing where those Muslim dancers were much earlier pioneers of taking it all off, much earlier than Western women in their go go dancing performances, and their men always enjoyed such nudity and dot drunk during those acts.

At 1/11/2006 08:33:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

dream on on the pawn opportunist called Khadam. Just watch these Sunnis forgive this man, just because he is a SUNNI.

Muslims are always hypocrites, of course!

At 1/11/2006 08:44:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

Hey toe Jam, next time you see a woman wearing the "evil veil" I think you should pull it off, then tell her one of your genius proverbs (like: why are you not "stonning" the devil?). But be careful, you can't do that in the West for you could go to jail for assault. You'll have to wait til you go back to Syria.

At 1/11/2006 08:52:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

hey alterion, little pawn, just shut up.

Glad we have control of Syria. hahahha

At 1/11/2006 09:03:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/11/2006 09:03:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This link is for you, mouse. Enjoy your Islamic veil!

At 1/11/2006 09:53:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

Toe JAM wrote:
"Glad we have control of Syria. hahahha"

Not sure about the rest of you guys, but I am now convinced that toe JAM's opposition is actually genuine. LOL

At 1/11/2006 09:55:00 AM, Blogger Nafdik said...

Alterion, I totally agree with your point that once Khaddam is in power we are stuck with another dynasty to remove.

In my fantasy universe, to go to power he has to create an unholy alliance between elements of the armed forces and the MBs. The MBs will have to impose on him an absolute condition that his children will not inherit the throne. This will be enchrined in our constitution as "Never again" and tought in school in the same way we learn about Harake Tashihie.

Now in the real world of course if he plays his cards right he will take full control, and probably establish a dynasty. I still think that a sunni dynasty is one step to democracy closer. Not because they will be better rulers but because they are easier to overthrow as they are not proetected by a strong tribal bonding.

Note too that Egypt has had a dictatorship for soem time but no dynasty, yet.

As for tribalism being part of our culture and heritage, I fully agree. But elitist family based culture where I might lose my worth because my sister married a somebody of a lower rank is a very ugly face of this tribal culture that in itself could have a lot of merit.

At 1/11/2006 10:04:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

Agreed. One footnote to what you'd mentioned, MBs do not enjoy as much support as many would have you believe. They are last week's headlines, if you know what I mean. Plus, they have failed time and again at the political game, for many reasons too broad to discuss here (in Syria I mean of course) 3isam al-3attar was a disaster when he joined the parliament, for an example. However, which is where I disagree with EHSANI2 for instance, any solution will have to take into account that the majority of Syrians would like to see some good level of Islam in their rule. Don't think necessarily of what you only see in Damascus, which has become a big melting pot if you will, but think of the other provinces and their more conservative inhabitants.

At 1/11/2006 10:19:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

"""Not sure about the rest of you guys, but I am now convinced that toe JAM's opposition is actually genuine. LOL"" little mouse Alterion..

LOL, and who do you think you are to be giving certificates of oppositions or loyalty to, mr. mouse?

Has assad finished from riding on your Islamic backs that you have now become in the opposition? I am sure that he can ride you again by offering a post in his government at any time he wishes, exactly as he did with all of the Muslim mice throughout the past 35 years. Whenever one of the mice is kicked out from the government because his ass became old enough and can not be relied on any more, thousands of you Muslim (sunnis to be precise) rush to show their loyalties and offer their asses to be used by the Assad (the Alawi). You are a people without any dignity.


At 1/11/2006 10:31:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

If I were a muslim (Thank God I am not), I would think twice about considering Khadam to be near me (that is if the theory that not all Muslims are mentally and sexually sick), and that is because Khadam's ass was used for 35 years, and he could trully be over used and may bring a sexual disease to those supposedly perhaps (god forbid) sane muslims.

But why even worry about his sickness, Muslims are used to be screwed and are sick anyway.\

At 1/11/2006 10:34:00 AM, Blogger Nafdik said...


Why do you think MBs have less power than we think?

I suspect they might get 45% of the vote in free elections even if other parties have the time to prepare.

Of course this figure is totally out of the hat, as Syria is a black box and we have no way to measure Syrian public opinion except by guessing and anectode.

At 1/11/2006 10:44:00 AM, Blogger ugarit said...


You no longer have any credibility. Don't waste our time. Say something meaningful instead of being vile and you are supposedly a "reverend" after all.

Yes muslims have problems, agreed, but there are good people in that faith attempting to do good.

Do you want us to start quoting the bible and its genocidal tendencies?

Anyhow religion is a waste of time.

At 1/11/2006 10:46:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

"I suspect they might get 45% of the vote in free elections even if other parties have the time to prepare.


I would say much higher than 45% to start with, but..

that won't last for long as interests will certainly collide and muslims will start masacring each other, for sure.

Muslims, and among them most new singers and dancers and so on will never accept the limitation of their freedom by a Taliban like regime.

I hope this regime is overthrwon soon, and MBs take over so we can cleanse Syria once and for all from their retarded brains and throw Islam in the trash bin of history, at least in Syria.

At 1/11/2006 10:48:00 AM, Blogger ugarit said...


Here's what the Gospel of Matthew 10:34 has to say about peace according to these different versions of the Bible. Of course, you're going to tell us that it's taken out of context.

"Don't think that I came to send peace on the earth. I didn't come to send peace, but a sword. (WEB)

Think not that I came to send peace on the earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (ASV)

Do not have the thought that I have come to send peace on the earth; I came not to send peace but a sword. (BBE)

Do not think that I have come to send peace upon the earth: I have not come to send peace, but a sword. (DBY)

Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (KJV)

Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. (WBS)

"Do not suppose that I came to bring peace to the earth: I did not come to bring peace but a sword. (WEY)

Ye may not suppose that I came to put peace on the earth; I did not come to put peace, but a sword; (YLT)

At 1/11/2006 10:53:00 AM, Blogger Innocent_Criminal said...

Alterion and Nafdik,

Both of you are over-blowing Khaddam, the guy is insignificant pawn being played by the powers to be (i.e Saudi & France) lets not make him more important that what he really is...a footnote in history. He will never make it to power, he doesnt have the card and even if he did he wouldn't play them right. he is despised (even more now) in syria.

I would like to advise you on how JAM and Metaz and SRP guys. just IGNORE and IGNORE thats all i do when i see a post by them. But JAM is quiet annoying cause he loves to see his nickname, by posting 50 posts instead of 2. and i just wish Josh would use the IP ban cause i have a feeling most of them are just the same lonely old fart.

At 1/11/2006 10:53:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

No Ugarit, you are taking the word sword literally. Can you also find another verse, please?

At 1/11/2006 10:59:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Strange how, those claiming to be opposed to the regime, and those who defend it here on this site get together and act as if they are discussing something from opposed views, when they are just putting an act, and defend each other on every occasion.

At 1/11/2006 10:59:00 AM, Blogger ugarit said...


Of course, you would say that about the word sword. There are very troubling verses in the Bible and the Quran.

At 1/11/2006 11:01:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

True, in the absence of any official polling, one would have to rely on what he hears/sees, which explains why we could have a wide margin of difference when comparing notes, due mostly to having different socio-religious circles around each one of us.

I will take a shot at trying to explain the perception of MBs inside of the Sunni circles. First off, and as a general role in human psychology, people hate losers and they do their utmost to disassociate themselves from them. Case in point, Saddam. Had he won any of his military adventures, he would have been hailed as the greatest leader. Now that he'd lost it all, it's become a national past time to curse him by the same people who were chanting his name. Same goes for the MBs, they have lost and have brought colossal disasters upon their fellow countrymen, their country, and even their brothers in Islam all due to misjudgements. People don't really have time to analyze and conclude, they just would like to disassociate themselves from the loser for obvious reasons. It is this same psychology you see evident in elections. When a candidate loses the final presidential election, you will never see him running again, because he knows people are unlikely to vote for someone who has been branded as a loser.

Reason number two: They've been long gone and they're indeed out of touch, not to mention out of members, other than the die-hard ones. One advantage tho, is they seem like they're the only organization out there with any international recognition (you may have mentioned that yourself I think). But this is not enough. When you mention MBs to the average Syrian, haunting memories would come back of bombing, massive arrests, crack downs, etc. This is a no go. People wish not give up the last ounce of peace they have left in their daily lives.

So to recap, MBs are out. BUT, should their be some kind of new and credible Islamic party/movement, then you bet. Your predictions would be closer to reality, but not MBs. My 2 cents.

At 1/11/2006 11:08:00 AM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

I fail to see while my comments are racist, I only told you what I heard. And yes, when I hear Sunni Syrians that are suposedly part of the cultural elite telling me that the Allawis are 2% of the population and that they will have to pay, yes, I ask myself some questions.

At 1/11/2006 11:13:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

You're right in the sense that Khaddam has been over-blown. Just the fact that we're discussing him is giving him more than he deserves. But think about it, value seems to be given to chosen ones by the puppet master and not by their personal merits. Here is what I mean. How come these discussions did not take place a month ago about Khaddam? Well, back then there was no Khaddam to be seen, hear from, or even hear about. Then someone seems to have adopted this clown, and all of a sudden he is allover the media, with a certain amount of credibility, mostly given to him by the fact that he is on well-watched channels and newspapers.

Basically what I am saying is, sometimes the puppet masters pick for us, and we can only read about it and weep. As for our own clowns here on this blog, I agree with you, they should be ignored. And I mostly do try to ignore them, unless when someone catches me on a bad day! :)

At 1/11/2006 11:15:00 AM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/11/2006 11:27:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

I bet you that annie, Ugarit, Criminal, and few others representing the regime, on one hand, and those claiming to be against the regime on the other, such as Ehsani2, and alterion are nothing but part of the team The "Regime's Maktab Syassi" has allocated here to defend the regim whether criticising it or defefending it. I see that these two groups agree with each other more often than not, in a subtle way.

Who is guiding their tactic? Are they British or American liberals?

Thank God I was never a Muslim, ms. Annie. I despise such a false religion rooted in evil thoughts and deeds.

Thank you

At 1/11/2006 11:38:00 AM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

Alterion and Nafdik,

Great discussion. I always enjoy reading what you both write. First, Alterion is absolutely right. Of course social elitism exists in our culture. I must add that it exists everywhere and not admitting it is akin to ignoring a fact of life. England, the mother of Anglo Saxon civilization, is more class conscious than Damascus will ever be. Social elitism is also more widespread in the U.S. than many people think. Why are we apologetic? Any family, in any corner of the world, enjoys a certain level of family status. The class system is alive and well in a remote Indian village, Tokyo, Paris and Damascus.

As to Alterion’s reference that I advocate no room for Islam in Government, set below is my response:

It is no secret that I strongly prefer and advocate absolutely no role for religion in politics. I am well aware, however, that this is not how the majority of Syrians feel. As I mentioned immediately following the Egyptian parliamentary elections, perhaps it is best to allow the religious elements in our society to participate in politics and then hope that the more secular forces win through the power of their ideas. My concern, however, is that I have little faith in these so-called Islamic tendencies or elements to limit their role to equal participation or to what you refer to as “some good level of Islam in their rule”. More specifically, what are the boundaries and definition of “some good level”? In Islam, the Quran is the word of God. No ifs or Buts. Were the religious personalities in Government to want to establish Sharia law, are the critics going to be infidels who are voting against the will of God? I think allowing Islam into politics is a dangerous slippery slope. Can you offer others and me the assurance that after being allowed to get into the house of democratic participation, would Islamists commit not to throw the key of the house away so prevent anyone else from ever getting in after them?

Having said this, I am of the view that the Middle East is moving in the direction of majority rule. People who want Assad gone have to accept the following:
1- The coveted law and order that Syria enjoys today will start to give way.
2- As majority rule takes over, Syrian society will become more Islamic. How much more, and what type of Islamization is open to debate. None of us can predict the outcome with any certainty.
3- The regional and global dynamics are changing towards more democracy, accountability, transparency and free trade. Syria will not be immune to theses trends as it changes leadership (if ever). I am personally optimistic that even if a person like Khaddam were to take over, the general atmosphere is different today that it was over the past 40 years. Humans will always be prone to corruption but I highly doubt it will ever reach the unprecedented levels that Syria has reached over this time period.

In sum, none of us can predict the future. People who have more confidence in their abilities to do so are proved to actually do worse than people who claim otherwise.
I strongly recommend to all of you a recently released book by Louis Menand entitled Everybody’s an expert, putting predictions to the test). You will find the book a fascinating read. I conclude by being an optimist on when it comes to the future of our beloved country. Regrettably, it is partly because it cannot possibly get any worse, though I am aware that some of you may dissagree.

At 1/11/2006 12:00:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...


I made a promise to myself when I joined this forum months ago that I would refrain from attacking people personally. I must admit that you have made it very hard for me to keep this promise. I will say a couple of things but hope to avoid breaking my promise in the interim. I will, in other words, use a civil tone.

It is exciting to write on a blog and see your name appear. In your case, I think it seems to border on an addiction. You are of course free to write 1000 comments a day and people are free to read or skip them. I am sorry to tell you that I have recently moved to the latter group. Not because I don’t like you. You could the sweetest and cuddliest individual on this forum. My issue with you is the repetitive nature of your commentary. I will give you an example. You have made it clear that you hate Khaddam and that you think he is a thug. I have news for you: We got it. You hate Islam and claim to be an Alawi. We also got it. One of the main reasons I participate on this forum is because I want to learn from others. I have often disagreed with Alterion for example. Yet, I find him very witty and smart. You mentioned other names like Ugarit and I.Criminal as well. I actually find them and a number of others (like Idaf) very able communicators even though we have different views of the world. I hope that you do not see my criticism of you as an attack that would render my self imposed promise broken. My friendly advice to you is to tone it down and to learn what you can from people that don’t agree with you

At 1/11/2006 12:00:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

ugarit, here is some one answering you:

From: David Atherton

Show me anyplace in the world where Islam has power that you would want to live. The desirability of living in any country with a majority religion of Islam increases in inverse to the extent in which the government is controlled by the Mullahs. This is a religion that has always expanded primarily by the sword. Think of the Moslem crusades against Europe which resulted in the unfortunately failed European crusades against the Moslems. Are there nice Moslems? OF COURSE! Is the religion itself pretty severely flawed? Absolutely. Watch Europe. In 50 years when Islam is the majority religion, the countries will be totally dysfunctional. Look at the Islamic ghettoes of Europe now. You have a miniature of the future. It is not a pretty site. Look at the strife and murder and racism w/i the Islamic community of Black America. I think the radical right wing diatribes against Islam, while not pretty, are far closer to the truth than the whiney apologetics – based on emotion, not fact – of the left and the blind.


At 1/11/2006 12:06:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

nice trash on this site!

At 1/11/2006 12:10:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

I grant you there are some readers on the site trying to form an opinion, but none of you is trying to learn, and you seem to have a particular agenda, so be honest with us, and your self.

At 1/11/2006 12:15:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...


Christianity and Islam were both spread by the sword and by peaceful means. I would not want to live in any religiously controlled country, Muslim or Christian, or etc.

Man you really filter out the horrors of christianity. Europe entered the dark ages and became more intolerant when it adopted christianity and came out of it when the church was essentially decapited. Yes Islam has also its horrible actions.

In fact, monotheism is very dangerous.

At 1/11/2006 12:17:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...


Having an agenda is one of the essential elements of being a human.

My agenda is human/civil rights, democracy, tolerance, peace, progress.

At 1/11/2006 12:27:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

Hi all, I printed the following observation in another thread, but thought that I should print here because you are actively discussing issues here and not there. Here is what I said about Idaf's letter to prof. Josh. Landis:


It is known that ex president of Syria, dictator in his time had allowed and even encouraged corruption to be committed by the ministers and other responsible people he chose to be with him, but yet kept a conceret record about each one to face him with when the time comes and when needed to do so.

from the above paragraph, and the concise record that you have printed about Mr. Khadam's past and finanicial dealing, I can not but conclude with certainty that you work for one or another branch of the Syrian Nukhabarat.

At 1/11/2006 12:30:00 PM, Blogger Innocent_Criminal said...

I know what you mean Alterion but this not the case by khaddam and his masters are only using him as a menace not as a potential threat or replacement. they are letting him talk and look scary but that’s all that there is to it. I have all confidence in that khaddam will be a nobody in by end of 2006. the threat to Syria at the moment is real but for it to get extremely worrying will require a lot more than this monkey and I am sure our beloved Arab "brothers" and our "friends" in Europe are working very hard for that threat to emerge.

At 1/11/2006 12:31:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...


One thing that I agree with is that "Muslim" culture is many years behind "christian" culture in tolerance.

However, it took hunderds of years for the christians to rip each other and the world apart before they civilized themselves. Christian Europe was reponsible for genocide against much of the world. Hundreds of millions of Native americans, and Africans were exterminated and Christians participated.

Most likely many of, including you, would be burned alive by the Church if we were living in the dark ages of Christianity.

At 1/11/2006 01:08:00 PM, Blogger Nafdik said...

Ehsani, your fear of Islamist parties using democracy to establish dictatorship is justified.

However, it is this fear that kept dictators in most Arab countries, many liberals preferred dictatorship to the danger of ending up with a theocracy.

I beleive that this is a fear that we have to face. Try to get a constitution that is as protective as possible of the democracy and then trust the poeple.

It has been said for a long time that Syrians are "not ready". I think they will never be readier than they are today because living under a dictator has made us even less tolerant of others, and will make us even less so in the future.

The ineffient and corrupt economy is adding to unemplyment and poverty, the profiteering of the few is making the many angry, the absence of political debate has let religion be the only heard voice and the fact the rulers are of one sect makes the other sects band together even more and prepare for a bloody day of vengence.

At 1/11/2006 02:09:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/11/2006 02:09:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

Jam. I regret to tell you this: Those that made you attack Islam on this site, mainly Alterion are Alawis, and are defending the regime, and were happy that you were attacking Islam. remember that this regime attributes every alawi that opposes to it to Rifaat Assad, and that is what Alterion did to you. Be careful with what these devils do. It is a regime that divides and conquer. let us stay united.

At 1/11/2006 02:27:00 PM, Blogger patriot2sy said...


This is not ment to be against you, but I still don't understand what you allawis thinks and beleive.
1. You pretend to be muslims, but apparently have a deep hatered towards islam. I don't know if the shiits are included.
2. but yet, your whole religion is based on Ali, and I understand that he wasn't the cousin of Jesus! supposedly he was muslim.
3. You always accuse other muslims of hating you. For me, it seems quite the opposite. No matter how they deal with you, you still have the inherent distrust towards them.
4. AND WORST OF ALL, whenever I try to learn about your relegion, I find a lot of obstacles. Alawis say we are muslims, so we have your same beleifs. OK fine, any books, hardly except for Nahj Albalagha which I read and found to be a general book. ANy websites. Nothing...
So, I would be grateful if you stop your insults against us and tell us a little bit about you (I understand you can talk freely in this forum if you WANT that)

Now, answering your stupid insults about islam.
1. you only presented expamles about mis-practices in islamic world today. You cannot take an example to reach a generalization, this is a rule in logics. If some muslims are bad, this doesn't mean islam is bad.
2. Your reason can be taken against you. Tell me how many people were killed by christians: Crusades, americans(against native american and Japan, 200 000 people in 10 seconds), not to mention WW1 and WW2, and the list continues)
Alawis in the regime killed a lot, I can put this an example to get to the fact that you are all devils).
3. The veil issue: I know the practice in SA is improper, but the fact, that most muslim women, wear hijjab, because they want to do so, not because they are obliged.
4. Finally, attacking a relegion so blindely makes you no good, it just discredit you. In a previous post you talked about the sick syrian personalitiy, I guess you are a true representation of it.

Thank you

At 1/11/2006 02:27:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

In spite my reservations and fears of too sharp a turn to political Islam, I must agree with you that Syria must no longer fall into the trap that the current regime has masterfully engineered. For years, they have convinced the International community and the Syrian people that this country must either accept to live with their brand of rule, or face the inevitable ascension of the Moslem Brothers to power. The article that Dr. Landis attached on the Unemployment rate in Syria is very telling. The social and economic implications of having a 70% youth unemployment rate are simply daunting, if not shocking. For this rate not to go up any further, economic growth has to comfortable exceed the growth rate of the labor force. As the Government itself admits, the country currently needs at least 7-8% GDP growth to merely stop things from deteriorating any further. I know it is hard for most people participating here to appreciate or even agree with the dire picture presented here. Most of us who go to Syria are surprised to see how well people live. Dr. Landis gave us a vivid picture of this prior to his departure from the country. The truth, however, is very different. While a rather significant number of families in the bigger cities of Damascus and Aleppo are indeed enjoying a high standard of living, the vast majority of the country that we just don’t see, touch or feel is having an incredibly hard time making ends meet. The statistic that I found to be the most alarming, however, deals with the fact that 68.3% of the work force held only elementary studies certificates. Why is this alarming? Since education is free, for 68.3% of society to stop at elementary level is a reflection of the low confidence that the population has in finding decent paying jobs should they earn higher levels of education. In other words, the opportunity cost of stopping at elementary school is considered pretty low. This is a vicious circle and a time bomb in the waiting. In every corner of the world, people have come to realize that more education is key to higher standards of living. To my enormous regret, Syria seems to be an exception. Our higher education is inadequate for the modern global education, so can you imagine 68.3% of us with only elementary education?

The Baath party and this regime has failed its people. Let us stop sugar coating it. Let us stop accepting excuses. People want to give our young leader time. Time is exactly what we do not have. Whether he or his regime will be implicated in the Hariri murder is impossible for anyone to know with certainty. What is certain, however, is that it is time for the curtains to come down on this sad chapter in this country’s history. So long as this regime and this party is in power, the country will be long on rhetoric, empty slogans, excuses, promises, lies, corruption, economic and civil sub performance. I think the initial 30 years and the latter 5 years have done enough damage to this poor nation.

At 1/11/2006 02:32:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

also, Ehsani is an israeli not Syrian, so be careful.

At 1/11/2006 02:36:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

[So, I would be grateful if you stop your insults against us and tell us a little bit about you (I understand you can talk freely in this forum if you WANT that)]

Me too, I am eager to know what the alawis are.

Jam, can you please educate us? but frankly, I think Jam is Christian not alawi.

At 1/11/2006 02:57:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Pascal just reassigned the religion of two persons based on his delusions.

Pacal and me? Can you reasign me? Make me a Hindu or a Jooo please (but I beg you, don't transform me into a Wahabi).

At 1/11/2006 03:01:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

By the way, if your magic wand can also transform physical appearance, I'd like to look like Pierce Brosnan if it's not too much to ask (not that I look bad, but I believe that you should always try to improve). Thank you.

At 1/11/2006 03:10:00 PM, Blogger Lira = 1500 said...

I have 3 questions to ask to the Syrian posters on this blog, namely JAM, Ehsani, nafdik, alterion, Innocent Criminal, ugarit, SRP, Active Listener and Metaz:

1.How do you feel about Assef Shawkat handling your intelligence service?

2. What do you think of Maher Al Assad at the head of the Republican Guard?

3. What is your opinion of Rami Makhlouf?

Knowing that Bashar Al Assad and those three individuals are ONE.

(Ehsani already answered)

At 1/11/2006 03:18:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

Lira = 1500

Though you said I answered, here is a brief repeat:

On 1. I would not mess around with him.
on 2. I would not mess areound with him.
on 3. The wealthiest underserving person I know

At 1/11/2006 03:24:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...


I want them all to go. However, to be honest with you I would never go back to syria if the MB or the likes take over. Ironically, I actually feel better that the Assad mafia controls the situation right now, but I know that's wrong and must be changed.

Due to all my fears I would like reforms to be pressured upon this mafia without violence.

I'm scared for my country. I can't say anymore. :-(

At 1/11/2006 03:25:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

He has answered? Where? I know this israeli is playing with words and minds here. I am aware of the efforts that are being made by Prof Josh landis to defend this regime, and that Idaf who appeared suddenly with an extensive "intelligence" report about Khadam is a guy working for a branch of the Syrian Mukhabarat who has under his hands all the regime's men's dossiers, including ex servants like Khadam. They bring it to light at any desired moment. Idaf who is supposedly just a "neutral' anaylyst as he proclaimed found ready made "opposition" individuals such as Ehsani (the israeli), and others like (Alterion) ready to be convinced by his so "great" analysis, and these people agree between themselves and present their solutions which are exactly what the regime intends to cheat with.

The question about one's opinion of the 4 characters mentioned is not really that smart. What is the difference between any of those who have served this regime? is Shawkat better or worse? Who cares!!

I see a basket of shit (Excuse my expression) spilled on the ground, which piece of shit was better than the rest of the shit in the basket?

At 1/11/2006 03:32:00 PM, Blogger ActiveListener said...

They are bizarre lower order creatures, of a species soon to become extinct.

I would like to take them home and keep them as pets.

But I'd have to put one out in the front garden, one out the back and keep one in the laundry in case Maher tries to shoot Shawkat again and Rami would be always snatching the food of the others.

At 1/11/2006 03:39:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

Lira = 1500

I see that you don't share Pascal's conviction about my Israeli background.
You have me on the list of your Syrian posters.

At 1/11/2006 03:43:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Pascal, don't lie to me: I know that you didn't take your medications today.

At 1/11/2006 03:58:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

Medications and some sleep will do Pascal a lot of good. I also advice taking it easy on the spy novels.

At 1/11/2006 04:09:00 PM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

Lira 1500
On behalf of SRP and myself I can assure you that we want President Bashar Assad to stay the President of our Syrian Nation. Able Shawkat, the man from "Medhale" his Vice President and Makhloof to deversify his enterprises, all three to invest in Orontes Defense Corporation and make billions of Dollars upon Billions.

President Assad should Appoint me as his ambassador to Washigton and as a deputy Defense Minster, or assistant to defense mister for technology or army modernization.
Personally I prefer an appointment as Syria's Abmassador to Russia than America. He can keep that geeky diplomat in Washigton it is a befitting appointment for Washington and U.S. Media.

Also would like Shawkat to hook me up with his Iranian Buddies and Bashar and his company stand firm against Evil Jews plotter and thier stooges in American administration, who as you see are nothing but a yo yo in Tel Aviv pocket.

Finally, I want all three to take advantage of Iran strength. Soon will have the "big one" and the Middle East will never be the same again. Iran will rule, and loosers Jews in that Unholy land of Israel will beg "peace" again. They are already begging and beggeing. Wait and see what is gonna happened when the Jews attack Iran.

Speaking of Iran...

Iran is the new power house and leader in the Middle East and the Islamic World. Israel is now officially relegated to miniscule status (approprietly).

The American are in no position to make a move on Iran and the Russian and French has a surprise for them, a surprise called getting even.

If the Israeli dummy attacked Iran, they will respond by destroying all the Middle east oil fields. You will be paying $8 per gallon. and the U.S. economy will be bankerupt. So IRan is on a free road to the Nuke and the regional leadership status.

I think that answear your question.

At 1/11/2006 04:29:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

There you have one more needing medications!

At 1/11/2006 04:34:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

Lira= 1500 ? I presume you meant Lebanese lira, true?

Iran is a superpower, and so was Iraq's Saddam, the 5th greatest army in the

now we have Bashar and Najed as superpowers together. I think Bashar should call those SRPs and let them join them...LOL what is the difference anyway? I see both think little of the US power and have no idea what they are dealing with.

It is ridiculous when small people think so greatly of themselves!

At 1/11/2006 04:41:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Nationalism Eternally said...

What you U.S. power ideot "ahnad"?
The mighty one that in three years could not take control of Iraq? after killing more than 300,000 iraqis, fighting against a rag tag hoodlum from Arabian desert led by Jordanin "Irhabi"

What a fucking joke you are.

At 1/11/2006 04:46:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Nationalism Eternally said...

Bashar and Najad is a power house. If Bashar to modernise his army, the two can easly squash Israel and Europe in one shot. But most likely they already working on slow death strategy for Israel, sort of like the one Genocidal Sharon is going through.

At 1/11/2006 05:01:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

The problem Mr./Ms./ nationalism is that the US is not a colonial power, and does not know how to deal with retadred nations.

But be careful, winning the "peace" is not like winning the war.The US is unable to deal with a post war situation in a retarded country and retarded people, but it can alway win a war. be careful of making yourself look so grand and so powerful for the US can smash your ass out of existence.


At 1/11/2006 05:10:00 PM, Blogger Nafdik said...

Assef Shawkat: The man has guts, he married the daughter of GOD without his consent. I hope he does not reach power because he can stick out longer than the idiotic Junior Assads

Maher: Bashar is the brain trust of the family, humm, the lights must be really dim at Maher Villa.

Rami Makhlouf: Has to be given some credit for building real businesses in Syria rather than sticking with the skimming that the clique has usually done.

At 1/11/2006 05:33:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

If the decision is eventually taken to destroy Iran`s nuclear facilities, the odds, though, are that it will be Israel acting unilaterally. Any assistance from the United States will in all probability be limited to very discreet help provided by the U.S. intelligence community, such as offers of intelligence, satellite imagery and on the ground hum-int (human intelligence) data collected by opponents to the regime of the ayatollahs that finds it way to the CIA Headquarters at Langley, Va.

With about 150,000 U.S. troops in Iraq -- and within easy reach of Iranian firepower, either in the form of direct rocket and artillery attack, or by Iraqi militia proxy, of which there is no shortage in Iraq -- it would be suicidal for the United States to attempt a direct attack on Iran.

What you amature ahnad don't understand is that power has its limit. Sure U.S. or Israel can evaporate Tehran, but 80 Million Iranians will march on with suicide note wrapped around the forhead, in 30 hours they are in Israel, wipping all the Jews out and taking the country over, nicely built.

Therefore it is not only suicidal for the U.S. but Israel itself to take such a course of action. The will just have to live under the consquence of the misrable foreign policy of the U.S. and Israel. They lost.


At 1/11/2006 05:41:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...

you made me laugh...

Actually when israel destroyed the Iraqi nuclear reactor, it did good to the Iraqis, and to all arabs and muslims. Such weapons should not be left to retarded minds. The destruction by Israel of that reactor was a good thing for Iraqis for it saved them from two possibilities: 1- human errors and the sloppy work behaviour that arabs are known for, and 2- by preventing saddam from using a nuclear bomb on his own people out of anger at any assassination attempt against him, or something similar. It saved the arabs for Saddam could in a moment of anger also use it against some Arabs.

Do you think the Arabs want Iran to have a nuclear bomb? I bet you that they are more scared than israel 100 folds.

And, I am surprised that America was able to rebuild germany and Japan that easily and failed to rebuild Iraq. You know why, for sure, and tell me who was smarter: Iraqis or Japanese and Germans? Of course, arabs want to be always against colonialism, and imperalism, and so on...but while trying their methods to destroy those two "evils", they are the first to stay under them until now, and probably for ever. That is not the case for Germany, japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, india, etc...but only Arabs will stay fighting Imperialism, and colonialism for ever!

At 1/11/2006 05:43:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

"....Assef Shawkat: The man has guts, he married the daughter of GOD without his consent. I hope he does not reach power because he can stick out longer than the idiotic Junior Assads...."

He is corragous, knows no fear and not a coward, not bad for leadership position. Would not replace him with Bashar because he is uncompromising and abrasives in way more than Bashar. He will get in trouble very fast and would not know how to come out of it except with bigger confrontation.

"......Maher: Bashar is the brain trust of the family, humm, the lights must be really dim at Maher Villa......"

In fact Both had proven to be very sharp and able to handle the toughest of situation.

Rami Makhlouf: Has to be given some credit for building real businesses in Syria rather than sticking with the skimming that the clique has usually done.

True, credit given, but he did have an unfair advantage, and that is what people complaining about.

At 1/11/2006 05:47:00 PM, Blogger Syrian Nationalism Eternally said...

AAAAAHHHH Shlomo ahnad, another Shlomo IHSANI2.

I am not gonna waste time responding to your crap again.

At 1/11/2006 05:55:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/11/2006 06:56:00 PM, Blogger Alterion said...

It is amazing how suddenly new IDs appear on this blog (and when you check it, you confirm that they have just been created), new in appearance but not new in their tired rhetoric, just as the older IDs somehow cease to post... Makes you wonder (not really, since the conclusion is clear).

At 1/11/2006 07:07:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

I was thinking same thing

At 1/11/2006 07:17:00 PM, Blogger EngineeringChange said...

I was checking out Amarji's blog trying to catch up on lost days and noticed he has called for a general work stoppage in Syria on February 1.

I think this is a fabulous idea, if it could somehow work (which I highly doubt). The regime needs to get the message that the leaders of Syria should be in service of the people, not the people in service of the regime. This could very well be a historic occasion, or it could just fizzle. If it has any chance of being historic, media and mosque must spread the word.

I hope the word is further spread.

“Courage is being afraid, but then doing what you have to do anyway.” RG

“In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.” AE

At 1/11/2006 07:21:00 PM, Blogger EngineeringChange said...

I just read a Time piece on Martin Luther King Jr--so I pose a question to others. If the Reverend MLK was born as a Syrian instead, with his same method of non-violence and religious background, do you think he would have the same kind of success as he did in the USA? Say if he was demanding an end to corruption or sectarianism? Or is his success contigent on his surroundings ie he could not succeed in Syria because the authorities would simply throw him in jail. The real MLK had to only deal with J. Edgar Hoover--our Syrian MLK would have an angry Assef on his hands---a much different story.

At 1/11/2006 07:30:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

General work stoppage in Syria?
Why? I thought they all love Bashar and hate the foreign powers who are targetting him and his country.
On another note, General stoppage of what work?

At 1/11/2006 07:56:00 PM, Blogger Alterion said...

On Opposition, Political Islam, and Common Denominators:

Here is an aggregation of my thoughts on the above topics now that I find a logical thread connecting all three under today's blog topics.

First off, I must say I am ecstatic to find a group of posters whom I disgree with, yet able to hold a civil discussion. I am ecstatic for our country, that is. This is the first good news in a long time. There is even bigger news behind this, really big (I hope I am not setting myself up for an anticlimactic corollary :). The big news is we have been able, albeit at this micro level, to see beyond the lowest common denominator. The lowest common denominator is about the most dangerous factor (not to mention the least developed) when it comes to socio-political grouping. In plain English, just look at what the Lebanese various factions are doing. In your wildest dreams, would you have ever imagined Jumblat praising Aoun, Ja3ja3 praising Hariri, Kata'eb praising Ja3ja3, etc. etc? This is called going for the lowest common denominator, which in this case is bashing Syria. This is dangerous for them, since it is bound to lose steam, it is still have nothing to do with their differences, and getting caught in the moment leads to misjudgements which could lead to further disasters. Now, one can claim that posters here are also going for the lowest common denominator, which is opposing the Syrian regime while they're overlooking their fundamental differences. Frankly, that's what I had thought for the first few weeks I read this blog. Well, I am happy to admit that I was wrong. Today alone, I have seen enough maturity in this opposition to realize that things could actually be brighter than I had originally thought. Since these are big words, I am under an obligation to be precise in my implications. I mean two posters in particular, EHSANI and Nafdik. They both opted for the highest common denominator and did not stop at let's just all agree that the Syrian regime sucks, but disagree on everything else.

Political Islam is a way of salvation, true. Does that mean that even the staunchest of Islamist opposers to the Syrian regime would actually remain a staunch opposer to the regime should things be hunky dory back home? Not at all, at least not as far as the majority is concerned, which is what I am talking about since there will always be nuts out there who oppose anything and everything.

To tackle this idea from another angle, even someone like me who would promote a "good level" of Islam into the rule, I have no problem living under a rule according to secular standards promoted by EHSANI2, for example. At the end an individual wants peace, security, good living standards, health care, education, and social decency. Most do not give a damn how these things are delivered. Once they are delivered, political discussions would become more academic than fundamental. But the important thing would be that the national machine would be running, and democracy would no longer be the antithesis of governance. Once the leader delivers the above national needs, then automatically he is a democratic leader, and it doesn't matter how he got to rule the country. This is a fact of politics.

Tribal leadership is a monarchy and is far from being democratic in its inception, as often the eldest son takes over his father's role in leading the tribe. Yet, if he is fair, just, decent, and delivers what his tribe needs, do you think anyone would question how he got to be a leader? People would be content, happy, and the machine will go on improving upon itself. He would be the democratic leader who was never elected. So political Islam or not, at the end it IS an academic discussion. But for now the machine is not running, so it is up for grabs.

At 1/11/2006 08:45:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

Ahnad said:

"And, I am surprised that America was able to rebuild germany and Japan that easily and failed to rebuild Iraq. You know why, for sure, and tell me who was smarter: Iraqis or Japanese and Germans? Of course, arabs want to be always against colonialism, and imperalism, and so on...but while trying their methods to destroy those two "evils", they are the first to stay under them until now, and probably for ever. That is not the case for Germany, japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, india, etc...but only Arabs will stay fighting Imperialism, and colonialism for ever!"

It took the US decades to rebuild Germany and Japan. The US had signicantly more troops on the ground and was genuinly interested in rebuilding Germany and Japan and actually believed in what it said publically about democracy. The current US has significantly fewer troops, and does'nt really believe in rebuilding nor democracy. They're merely interested in a stable sheikdom so they can talk oil. Another factor the unhealthy relationship between Israel in the US which makes most US action truely suspect.

The US is quite aware that many countries are shifting to the Euro and that petroleum is going to end in the next few decades. EU's economy is becoming a threat. China's will be another threat. This is the end of the American century and they know it and want to grab as much as possible.

At 1/11/2006 08:47:00 PM, Blogger EHSANI2 said...

Since Khaddam’s grand entry onto the scene recently, he has been demonized and attacked by a vast majority of Syrians and Lebanese alike, and for very good reasons. People who do know him refer to him as a “Fox”. Why did this man with a reported $1.1 Billion net worth decide to risk it all? Supposedly, he had promised Bashar not to get into politics and start writing his memoirs from Paris. For six months, he did go in hiding. He had two choices going forward:
1- Enjoy the fine living and dining of beautiful Paris and do not get involved in politics as he promised. The consensus opinion then, and now, has been for the west to cut a deal with Bashar. Why then go for a kamikaze mission and take on Bashar? Yes, Al-Hariri would love him to do it regardless. But, they know better than anyone the dangers he will be putting his life, as well as well as his whole family, under as a result.
2- Having stayed for six months in the limelight, Khaddam hears from Hariri that the Americans and French are not going to back down. He becomes convinced that the regime will not make it. Now the equation changes. Whereas the risk of taking on Bashar was huge in scenario 1 above, coming out on the attack now starts to make a lot of sense. For starters, his billion could be safe when the regime’s stolen billions get tracked down in the future.

Khaddam could well the thug that everyone think he is. I don’t think he is stupid though. Scenario 2 above could not be totally dismissed. This “fox” perhaps already sees it coming and hence decided to jump on the bandwagon now that he knows its direction.


An excellent comment as usual. Thanks to Dr. Landis, it has been a joy to interact with a number of articulate and smart Syrian fellow men on this forum. You conclude by stating that it is all about results. The delivery of a well running machine to your people is all that will matter in the end. This is like music to my ears. Back when I joined this forum for the first time, I tried to focus people’s attention on economic matters. Western democracies choose their leaders based on security of their homeland and economic growth. Hopefully one day, our people will enjoy a similar experience.

At 1/11/2006 08:49:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Germans and Japanese rebuild their countries mainly by themselves in one decade.

At 1/11/2006 09:09:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

"Germans and Japanese rebuild their countries mainly by themselves in one decade."

Remember the Marshal Plan? The US had spent tens of billions of dollars (1940-50's dollars). The US was planning to use Iraq's wealth to rebuild. They wanted to do occupation on the cheap which is a recipe for disaster.

At 1/11/2006 09:12:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

Syria In Their Sights
The neocons plan their next “cakewalk.”
Robert Dreyfuss

January 16, 2006 Issue
Copyright © 2006 The American Conservative

It’s happening again. It all sounds depressingly familiar, and it is. The Bush administration accuses the leader of a major
Arab country of supporting terrorism and harboring weapons of mass destruction. The stable of neoconservative pundits begins
beating the drums of war. American forces begin massing on the country’s border, amid ominous talk of cross-border attacks.
Top U.S. officials warn that American patience with the country’s leader is running out, and the United States imposes
economic sanctions unilaterally. There are threats about taking the whole thing to the United Nations Security Council. And,
in Washington, an exile leader with questionable credentials begins making the rounds of official Washington and finds doors
springing open at the Pentagon, the National Security Council, and at Elizabeth Cheney’s shop at the State Department.

This time it is Syria. The pressure is on, and it will likely get a lot worse very soon. On Dec. 15, the second installment of
the report by a UN team investigating the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri is delivered. The first
report, released in October, implicated several members of President Bashar Assad’s family in the Hariri murder, though
without hard evidence. It would be wrong, however, to see the Bush administration’s campaign against Syria only through the
lens of the Hariri case. Like the attack on Iraq, it is a longstanding vendetta.

At 1/11/2006 09:15:00 PM, Blogger Alterion said...

EHSANI2, thanks, it is mentally stimulating to engage intelligent people.

Let me add another factor to your well-organized analysis about Khaddam if I may. It's become quite clear that Chirac in particular has something personal about a regime change in Syria. In that I mean, it is much like removing Saddam was personal to the Bushes. The US on the other hand, has a bigger fish to fry, namely Iraq. Everything else falls within the amount of impact it can have on Iraq (including policies on Iran, Syria, Turkey, etc.) Having said that, they (the Americans) would also love to have a scarecrow which they can frighten the Syrians with, so they've gone along with the French on picking a guy to play that role. Basically what I am alluding to is he may have very well been recruited by the French to play a large role in their design on Syria (which is a smaller role as far as the Americans are concerned), but nonetheless they both (the US and France) went for the lowest common denominator ;) on this one for now. So he may have had this desire as you concluded, but he may have been approached to play this role as well. But in my mind, there is no question about it, Chirac is the main drive behind all of this, backed by the Americans of course for their own purposes, and Khaddam has happily accepted this role for his own purposes too. I think if there was no Hariri assassination tho, there wouldn't have been a Khaddam on al-Arabia, in other words.

At 1/11/2006 09:19:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

Hey guys let's give Dr. Landis a break and talk in

to register go here


At 1/11/2006 09:20:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Yes,I know about the Marshall plan, Germany got around 10 billion (in 2005 dollars), which is less than Iraq even though the population of Germany is more than twice the one of Iraq.

Japan wasn't part of the Marshall plan.

At 1/11/2006 09:20:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

At 1/11/2006 09:40:00 PM, Blogger Atassi said...

I support the Feb 1, No Work day. This is a good idea from a good source to the people of Syria :-)

At 1/11/2006 09:47:00 PM, Blogger Pascal said...

Khadam , Assad, trash, etc... you people make me laugh, real hard!

it is as if any one of you all knows a thing about what goes on in the real circles of power! amazingly you believe your selves, and each one of you is hoping for his/her preference of a dictator in his/her country. The bull shit is over, and Landis who is associated with you is losing the battle. The American liberals will not be allowed to slow the march of history forward, and your thugs will be destoryed, including Khadam, and your hero liutenant Bashar Assad. I have news for you: France is on the losing end of this temporary alignment. Chirac is sick and will be dead soon, and the French Socialists will come to power, and neither Khadam nor Assad will have a chance in hell with them. Socialists in France are much more allied to the US than Chirac. The Israelis on this site know these facts very well, but they are trying to divert the real story behind an apparent cheap talks.

At 1/11/2006 10:03:00 PM, Blogger ahnad said...


Is that a city in Morocco? anyway, the Iraqis had a chance to cooperate with the american forces, work together to rebuild the country, and benefit from the vast american expertise in everything. they would have made all necessary reparations fast enough to bring back normal life to the iraqis, but iraqis chose to "resist".

Now, some one mentioned that the Us was not capable with all of its power, and even after 3years of occupation to establish order in Iraq. That is true, this is not a reflection of the limits of force, it is something no one would have believed, which is that Iraqis would send suicide bombers to kill other Iraqi children, men, women old and young. They call this "resistance', and some on this site are proud of it, or so it seems! Of course, when you have people determined to hurt each other, no American power can stand on their way, and it is not something you should count on to defeat Amaerica as you pretend. Should America choose not to care about human life in Iraq, it can destroy the place completely, but it chose to care, and in caring, some of you see this as a weakness. Believe me, if Iran and Syria will pretend to be superpowers as some one here has suggested, they could be destroyed in few hours. Who are you kidding when you think you can stand in the face of the mighty US? Be glad that it is run by great human beings, and it abides by the highest standards of morality.

At 1/11/2006 10:13:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

In response to "patriot2sy":

You said this:

""""""""""""1. You pretend to be muslims, but apparently have a deep hatered towards islam. I don't know if the shiits are included.
2. but yet, your whole religion is based on Ali, and I understand that he wasn't the cousin of Jesus! supposedly he was muslim.
3. You always accuse other muslims of hating you. For me, it seems quite the opposite. No matter how they deal with you, you still have the inherent distrust towards them.

Sorry to disappoint you, but my views represent me alone, and I don't give a damn about what alawis believe in or don't. My views have been well known by now: I do not believe in Islam as a peaceful and comforting religion to the soul. it is a violent religion, and if Alawis consider themselves muslims, then they too must bear the label attached to islam. ask some alawi believers what they believe, don't ask me, because I don't care what they believe, but I care for the relationship that exists between Syrians based on the hatred and prejudices many have exhibitted, and I think that Sunnis are more backward, and retarded than alawis, and are also definetly hypocrites.... though both are destined to hell.

Have a great day.

At 1/11/2006 10:55:00 PM, Blogger norman said...

Logicly Syrians should be in the street beging but they are not they seem to manage may be because they help each other more than it is known in the US or because most of Syria,s economy is underground most people do not pay taxes more than 70% of buisneses declare a loss year after year and nobody asks them to why they stay in biusness,Syria is not as bad as Ehsani2 wants us to beleive and is not as good as we all know it could be but for a starter Syria has no forign debt and if the US wants to help Syria it can do that without destroying it,i fear that what Ehsani2 wants is to change Syria to an Islamist country to appease the islamist no matter what the results of such a plan ,we see what happend in Iraq now ruled by the mullas under cover with at least 20000 of our best American kids killed or injured and more than 35000 iraqies,is that realy considerd a sccess i do not think so ,the US has the noblest of intention but seems to have the wrong plan to achieve it ,I wish the US will use more honey than viniger,If people like us and i think they will love us (the US)when they know us and that can be acheived by showing them how much we care and for Syria helping Syria economicly ,legaly and politecly without destroying it will go a long way into making Syrians our freinds and freind protect each other but we have to be freinds to have freinds.

At 1/12/2006 01:13:00 AM, Blogger annie said...

Syria, the next cakewalk here

At 1/12/2006 05:12:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

With all of what appears so serious in the report that "annie" listed, Bashar assad still keeps the honourable Syrians in his jails, and the thieves and corrupt and bloody murderers leading Syria, and in his root to top corrupt government!

Is this a "president" that understands a thing? Is he not a copy of his Baathy rival, friend, Saddam Hussein? Saddam hussein, in his last days rushed to empty his jails from "oppositions", only to discover that he released ordinary criminals that participated in the theft of Iraq historic treasury when the US just got control of Iraq, and kept opposition members to be shouting from the inside of their deep basement cells for assistance when they were flooding with water after the war, and no one could tell where the gates were to get to their help, and so they died there.

This is a president who was instructed by his father when he was being prepared to inherit Syria to always jail or assassinate any one with honest background that has any overt ambtion in life, and keep thieves around him, because there was 'no danger from those corrupt" according to the theory he governed Syria with.

We shall see soon, if the above report will be read by this "western educated" young man. This young man is leading Syria to a disaster.


At 1/12/2006 05:59:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Rice: Syria on notice over Hariri
'Grave concerns' over sponsorship of terrorism
From CNN State Department Producer Elise Labott

Wednesday, January 11, 2006; Posted: 5:05 p.m. EST (22:05 GMT)

Secretary Rice warns Syria to stop intimidating opposition members.

United States
Rafik Hariri

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The United States has put Syria on notice, warning that further action would be taken by the U.N. Security Council if Damascus continued to obstruct the investigation into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

"The United States has grave and continuing concerns about Syria's destabilizing behavior and sponsorship of terrorism," Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said in a written statement.

"Syria must cease obstructing the investigation into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Hariri and instead cooperate fully and unconditionally, as required by U.N. Security Council resolutions."

A U.N. investigation has so far found evidence it believes indicates top-ranked Syrian and Lebanese officials were involved in the killing of Hariri, who died in a massive explosion when his motorcade was bombed in Beirut last February.

The probe also criticized the level of Syrian cooperation and urged Damascus to be more forthcoming with investigators.

Syrian officials have denied any involvement in his slaying. However, the former Syrian vice president, who has fled the nation, recently came forward, saying Syrian President Bashar al-Assad made direct personal threats against Hariri, months before he was assassinated.

U.N. investigators last week asked to interview Assad and Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk al-Sharaa.

In her statement Wednesday, Rice said the United States would refer the matter back to the U.N. Security Council if Syrian "obstruction" with investigators continued.

She also warned Syria to stop its intimidation of, and violence against, members of the Lebanese opposition of Assad's regime.

"Continuing assassinations in Lebanon of opponents of Syrian domination, including most recently the murder of journalist and Member of Parliament Gebran Tueni on December 12, 2005, create an atmosphere of fear that Syria uses to intimidate Lebanon," she said.

"Syria must cease this intimidation and immediately come into compliance with all relevant Security Council resolutions."

Rice said the United States "stands firmly" with the people of Lebanon in "rejecting any deals or compromises that would undermine" the investigation.

She also called for "full implementation" of U.N. Security Council resolution 1559, which calls for the disarmament and disbanding of Hezbollah and other militias.

"Syria must once and for all end its interference in the internal affairs of Lebanon," she said.

The United Nations on Wednesday named an experienced prosecutor with the International Criminal Court to succeed Detlev Mehlis as head of the U.N. investigation. Serge Brammertz, a 43-year-old Belgian, will "proceed to Beirut to take up his assignment as soon as practicable," U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.

Hariri's killing led to massive protests and renewed international pressure on Syria to withdraw troops and intelligence assets from Lebanon, which it had dominated since the end of the 1975-1990 Lebanese civil war.

At 1/12/2006 06:33:00 AM, Blogger ugarit said...

ahnad said...

"Is that a city in Morocco? anyway, the Iraqis had a chance to cooperate with the american forces, work together to rebuild the country, and benefit from the vast american expertise in everything. they would have made all necessary reparations fast enough to bring back normal life to the iraqis, but iraqis chose to "resist".

Germany's male population was decimated by the allied forces there was no one to really keep the peace except the US and the allies. I would'nt say Iraqis are more "retarted" than the Germans. Look at what the Germans did to other Germans and other Europeans when they had a chance.

Iraq was and is full of young males who are unemployed and a foreign entity is occupying their country so what's there to do? Clearly the Americans felt more affinity with European culture and can understand them. That's not the case in Iraq.

But you know if the Iraqis had capitulated completely Iraq may have become a very viable nation. But that's fantasy world

To be honest with you it's not healthy for the US to "win" in Iraq. It would set a terrible precedent for future wars.

Clearly the US can completely destroy Iraq but that would defeat its mercantile ambitions.

At 1/12/2006 09:05:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Bad news for people like "alterion": hundreds of Hajis (pilgrimages) went to the sky today while turning around the stone they were stonning (the devil), and I am sure they are considered martyres and they are now beside Allah awaited by hostesses and boys (I think the exact number is 72 virgins and a 100 boys). What a greater happiness than that, and yet "Alterion" and his friends were not among them! Pitty the man. He missed his chance.

At 1/12/2006 09:30:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

He keeps typing "stonning". It is STONING not STONNING you idiot. And if you play your cards right with your God, maybe you will become one of those 100 boys who will entertain the martyrs...LOL

At 1/12/2006 09:43:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/12/2006 09:46:00 AM, Blogger ahnad said...


You have good points. Let me say that yes, islam is few hundred years behind Christianity as you rightly pointed out. That is the whole problem: How can we accomodate backward people entrenched in their backward ideologies with the modern world?

It is a challenge, I admit. I have no solution, but can only feel fearful of these idiots.

At 1/12/2006 09:50:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

hahah, this is your religion, you idiot. Idon't believe in such crap, but it is your beliefs for which you commit acts of murders in suicide bombings just to meet those virgins and boys.

I am not a homosexual like most of the Muslims certainly are.

At 1/12/2006 09:55:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Here is why these crazies died in maka, it is written in Arabic though, but it speaks about the value of human beings in the Islamic Regimes such as the saudi one where people are classified according to the Mater/Slave equation that the Quran plainly make it as a written law:
فضيحة.... شخصية هامة مرت في منى فمات ثلاثمائة حاج دوسا تحت الاقدام

وزعت وكالة رويتر للانباء خبرا عاجلا من مكة المكرمة عن مقتل اكثر من ثلاثمائة حاج دوسا تحت الاقدام خلال رمي الجمرات في منى بعد تدافع الحجيج بسبب سؤ الادارة والتصرف من الجهات المسئولة التي تركت رجال الاعمال الذين يديرون حملات الحج يوجهون مجموعاتهم الى منى دون تنظيم ... ومع ان السلطات السعودية الرسمية ذكرت ان سبب التدافع هو وقوع حاجيات بعض الحجاج من سياراتهم مما تسبب في التدافع والزحام الا ان محطة الجزيرة القطرية نقلت عن شهود عيان ان السبب في التدافع والزحام الذي ادى الى الكارثة هو ان رجال الشرطة اوقفوا المرور للسماح لسيارة تحمل شخصية هامة بالمرور مما ادى الى التدافع والازدحام الذي ادى الى الكارثة ولم يتم الكشف عن هوية الشخصية الهامة التي ادى حجها الى مقتل ثلاثمائة انسان وجرح اكثر من الف

ووفقا لرويتر فان اكثر من الف جريح وقع من جراء هذا التدافع .... وهذه هي الكارثة الثانية التي

At 1/12/2006 10:00:00 AM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

كشفت مصادر سورية مطلعة عنه نية القيادة السورية تشكيل مجلس استشاري بمثابة (مجلس شيوخ) مشكل من أشخاص من حزب البعث الحاكم وأحزاب الجبهة المؤتلفة معه, بالإضافة إلى ممثلين عن المعارضة السورية بكافة أطيافها عدا الأخوان المسلمين, وشخصيات سورية مستقلة أخرى. وقالت المصادر امس أن القيادة تدرس فتح حوار مع بعض تيارات المعارضة الموجودة في البلاد كبداية لفتح حوار أوسع وأشمل لتشكيل هذا المجلس الذي سيكون له دور استشاري يصدر عنه توصيات في كافة مجالات عمل الدولة. وتأتي هذه الإشارات متزامنة مع ما أشار إليه حسن عبد العظيم الناطق باسم التجمع الوطني الديمقراطي المعارض (ائتلاف من خمسة أحزاب معارضة) عن نية السلطات السورية فتح حوار مع قوى في المعارضة قريباً, نقلاً عن وفد اتحاد المحامين العرب الذي اجتمع مع الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد قبل أيام. وأشار ناشط في لجان إحياء المجتمع المدني في تعليق ل¯ (آكي) إلى حذر المعارضة من التعامل مع موضوع المجلس الاستشاري الذي "قد" تقترحه القيادة, معتبراً انتركيبة النظام الحالية "لا يمكن أن تمنح هذا المجلس أي صلاحيات", وسيتحول إلى "مجلس شكلي لإسكات المعارضة

This is a great step forward. Would like to be part of this Majlis as soon as it is setup. We look forward to advise President Assad and the Syrian Governmnet.

That is what is missing, an advisory board that encompass wide interests and opinion for President Assad and the Government to choose the right path.

We hope this will come true and that SSPRS will be part of it.

At 1/12/2006 10:01:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/12/2006 10:03:00 AM, Blogger Syrian Republican Party said...

القيادة السورية تشكيل مجلس استشاري بمثابة (مجلس شيوخ) مشكل من أشخاص من حزب البعث الحاكم وأحزاب الجبهة المؤتلفة معه, بالإضافة إلى ممثلين عن المعارضة السورية بكافة أطيافها عدا الأخوان المسلمين, وشخصيات سورية مستقلة أخرى. وقالت المصادر امس أن القيادة تدرس فتح حوار مع بعض تيارات المعارضة الموجودة في البلاد كبداية لفتح حوار أوسع وأشمل لتشكيل هذا المجلس الذي سيكون له دور استشاري يصدر عنه توصيات في كافة مجالات عمل الدولة. وتأتي هذه الإشارات متزامنة مع ما أشار إليه حسن عبد العظيم الناطق باسم التجمع الوطني الديمقراطي المعارض (ائتلاف من خمسة أحزاب معارضة) عن نية السلطات السورية فتح حوار مع قوى في المعارضة قريباً, نقلاً عن وفد اتحاد المحامين العرب الذي اجتمع مع الرئيس السوري بشار الأسد قبل أيام. وأشار ناشط في لجان إحياء المجتمع المدني في تعليق ل¯ (آكي) إلى حذر المعارضة من التعامل مع موضوع المجلس الاستشاري الذي "قد" تقترحه القيادة, معتبراً انتركيبة النظام الحالية "لا يمكن أن تمنح هذا المجلس أي صلاحيات", وسيتحول إلى "مجلس شكلي لإسكات المعارضة

This is a great step forward. Would like to be part of this Majlis as soon as it is setup. We look forward to advise President Assad and the Syrian Governmnet.

That is what is missing, an advisory board that encompass wide interests and opinion for President Assad and the Government to choose the right path.

We hope this will come true and that SSPRS will be part of it.

At 1/12/2006 10:04:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...


You are certainly am Muslim with all of what that entitles you to be>

It is enough tto have that label. It is yours. Enjoy it.

At 1/12/2006 10:08:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

"""This is a great step forward. Would like to be part of this Majlis as soon as it is setup. We look forward to advise President Assad and the Syrian Governmnet.


Certainly there is a word for those trying to make a fast buck. Khadam made billions while performing the exact thing this regime is calling for, and you now.

Why is this regime still imprisonning the Damascus Spring Heroes? Why more one minute? We were told it was Khadam that did so, but now they have no excuse? So, will they release one or two of them, and declare the door open for that "Majles"? No patriotic Syrian will accept such a role, not among those whoe are in prisons now like seif and others.

Seif Refused already.

Have a great day

At 1/12/2006 10:14:00 AM, Blogger Alterion said...

Toe jam (or whatever other IDs you're using here, ahnad, yabroud, pascal, etc.):
Your sexuality is your problem, I wouldn't speculate on that. I will say however that you're clearly a cyber schizophrenic maniac. Just given the number of fake IDs you post under, in this blog alone should be alarming to your parents.

At 1/12/2006 10:17:00 AM, Blogger ahnad said...

Go do it with your mother and sister as all Muslims do.

So, shut up, Alterion!

At 1/12/2006 10:19:00 AM, Blogger Metaz K. M. Aldendeshe said...

Confirming that we are very excited and hoping to be part of this advisory Majlis. Even if we are not compensated in any way.

We value and appreciate President assad attempt at introducing reforms and his willingness to hear opposing view than those he is used to listen too.

Although, we understand that the Majlis has no powers. We rather be it that way, no powers, but members can freely speak thier opinion without any restraint, beit it private or public. Any arrangement will do. This is by far better and more condusive than giving the Majlis supefecial powers like the current Majlis Alshaab, a rubber stamp body.

At 1/12/2006 10:23:00 AM, Blogger ahnad said...

لا تناقش

في عالمنا الإسلامي من الافضل ألا تناقش أو

تتساءل .. حتي تظل آمنا

لا تناقش في السياسة .. فهناك ثوابت أهمها أن طاعة ولي الأمر من طاعة الله ..

لا تناقش في المسجد .. فالله لا يحب الجدل فهو نوع من الفسوق ..

عليك فقط أن تسمع وتطيع .. ليس مهما أن تقتنع .. من أنت لكي تقتنع .. هل أنت عالم في الدين .. في الشريعة والفقه وعلم الحديث .. ألا تعلم أن العلماء هم ورثة الأنبياء وأن لحومهم مسمومة .. وهل يوجد علماء يستحقون الاحترام إلا علماء الدين .. ليس مهما إن كنت حاصلا علي أعلي درجات الثقافة وأعلي الشهادات العلمية في أي مجال .. فأنت لست عالم دين ..

عليك أن تنصت الي خطبة الجمعة بخشوع .. مهما قال الخطيب .. فهو قطعا يعرف أكثر منك ..

لاتناقش في المدرسة .. فالمعلم له الاحترام والتبجيل .. وليس من مهمته في عالمنا أن يقنعك أو يجعلك تفهم .. المهم أن يحشو مخك بالمعلومات الضرورية لكي تنجح في الامتحان .. وليس مهما بعدها إن تذكرتها أم لا ..

لا تناقش في المنزل .. النقاش معناه عدم الاحترام وأنك مشاغب تحتاج التأديب والتهذيب والاصلاح ..

لا تناقش .. عليك أن تحترم ثوابت الأمة والوطن والمنزل والرئيس في العمل ..

وعندها سيرضي عنك الجميع .. اسرتك و زوجتك و زملاؤك في العمل والاهم رئيسك .. فتوجيهاته أوامر ... وتأكد أنك ستترقي في العمل وقد يسعدك الحظ لتصبح مديرا فوزيرا بل ورئيس وزراء كل عمل تعمله هو بفضل توجيهات الرئيس أو الملك الذي يشملنا جميعا بفضله ورحمته وفكره الثافب ..

وتأكد أن زوجتك وأسرتك وأولادك سيكونون عنك راضين طالما يملأ الطعام المنزل و تصبح مصاريف الدروس الخصوصية الضرورية لحشو عقول أولادك بالمعلومات الضرورية للنجاح في الامتحانات متوفرة .. وتستطيع أن توفر لهم السيارة والمنزل والوضع الاجتماعي المتميز .. ليس مهما كيف حصلت علي المال .. ليس مهما إن اضطررت الي النفاق و غض النظر عن الفساد والرشوة فسيأتي عليك اليوم الذي تنهار عليك فيه الرشاوي ويزداد حسابك في البنك .. وتنعم بما كان ينعم به رؤساؤك ..

لا تناقش .. فمن أنت لكي تناقش .. وتتساءل فتسبب الصداع لنفسك ولمن حولك ..

في الدين ليس عليك إلا أن تحفظ ما قاله لك الأئمة الأربعة .. فهم نقلوا اليك ماقاله الصحابة والتابعين رضي الله عنهم وأرضاهم .. وهو مايكرره شيوخنا الكبار حتي اليوم من تلخيص وتفسير تلك المذاهب .. بارك الله لنا فيهم فقد كفونا تعب التفكير والاحتهاد ..

لايهم إن كان هؤلاء الأئمة كانوا يعيشون في عصر الناقة ونحن نعيش في عصر الصاروخ .. إن كانوا يعيشون في عصر ضوء الشمعة ونحن الآن نعيش في عصر الكهرباء .. كانوا يعيشون في عصر التداوي بالحبة السوداء والرقية ونحن نعيش في عصر زراعة الأعضاء ..

لايهم إن كانوا يعيشون في عصر لم تكن فيه شركات عابرة للقارات ونظام مصرفي معقد يتحكم في الاقتصاد العالمي ..

لاتناقش في السياسة .. فمن أنت .. هل أنت من عائلة مبارك او الاسد أو سليل الملوك ..

هل أنت عضو في لجنة السياسات .. او اللجنة المركزية لحزب البعث .. أو في مكتب الارشاد للإخوان ..

إن أردت أن تناقش فما عليك إلا أن تناقش مصاريف الاولاد مع زوجتك و من سيكسب برنامج ستار أكاديمي وهل مقدمة إليسا أفضل أم مؤخرة روبي ..

من حقك أن تفكر كيف تكسب لقمة عيشك وليس مهما إن كانت من حلال أم من حرام طالما لايعرف أحد مصدرها ..

ولكن ليس من حقك أن تفكر أو تناقش حقوق المواطن والعدالة الاجتماعية وإعادة توزيع الثروة بطريقة عادلة .. ليس من حقك أن تناقش ما هو معلوم من الدين بالضرورة او الوطنية بالضرورة أو القومية بالضرورة ..

إن أردت أن تكون مزعجا وتناقش وتتساءل .. فعليك ألا تتعدي حدودك وتعرف ما هي الخطوط الحمراء من ثوابت الدين والوطن ..

إن أردت أن تنتقد رئيسا .. فهناك بوش تستطيع أن تنتقده كما تشاء ..

وإن أردت أن تنتقد نظاما فهناك أي نظام غير النظام الحاكم في بلدك تستطيع أن تنتقده كما تشاء .. وياحبذا لو كان هذا النظام هو النظام الصهيوني الغاصب .. فهو من استولي علي فلسطين وهو المسئول عن كل بلاوينا .. من غياب الديمقراطية والحرية الي ارتفاع الاسعار وطفح المجاري ونهب ثروات الأمة وحتي مطبات الشوارع وأزمات المرور ..

وإن أردت أن تناقش مفهوما دينيا .. فلتناقش دين الآخرين .. إن كنت مسلما فلتناقش كهنوتية الكنيسة ... وإن كنت مسيحيا فلتناقش تطرف بن لادن والظواهري ..

أيها المواطن العربي الكريم لا تناقش .. حتي تظل آمنا .. وترضي عنك أسرتك ويرضي عليك مدرسوك وشيوخك في المسجد وزملاؤك ورؤساؤك في العمل .. وقد يبتسم لك الحظ لتصبح وزيرا ورئيسا للوزراء تتلقي توجيهات القائد الملهم .. فتنفذها دون أن تناقش أو حتي تتساءل .. ألم تري عظمة رئيس وزرائنا الهمام .. تلقي التعليمات بتغيير وزير التعليم .. فأقال الوزيرالخطأ .. وزير التعليم العالي .. لأنهم نسوا كلمة التربية عند غصدار التوجيهات .. ليصحح خطأ من أوصل له التوجيهات العليا بعدها باربعة وعشرين ساعة .. عندما وصلت له التعليمات واضحة .. المهم ألا يناقش .. فمن أنت أيها المواطن العادي لكي تناقش ..

اللهم الهمنا الصبر ونجينا من مرض النقاش والتساؤل .. فهو مرض يؤدي الي التهلكة .. وقد يؤدي الي اتهامات التكفير فقطع الرأس أو التفريق عن الزوجة ..أو التخريف فالفصل من العمل .. أو اتهامات العمالة والخيانة فغياهب السجن أو علي الاقل المنع من السفر و الوضع علي قوائم المنع من دخول العديد من بلادنا العربية الأبية ..

اللهم الهمنا الرضا والقناعة بثوابتنا وخطوطنا الحمراء والصفراء .. ففيها العيش الآمن وتربية العيال .. ليصبحوا مثلنا كائنات لا تناقش ..

عمرو اسماعيل

At 1/12/2006 11:13:00 AM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

I want to reassure mr. Alterion and tell him that he doesn't have to worry about my parents; I am a retired marine enjoying this, and passing time. He now can slow down his anger. take it easy pal!

At 1/12/2006 12:50:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

"Germany's male population was decimated by the allied forces there was no one to really keep the peace except the US and the allies."
Let us not exagerate. Decimated means divided by 10, besides the nazis had it coming. And the population of Iraq was also decimated by 20 years of war, repression, emigration and embargo.

"I would'nt say Iraqis are more "retarted" than the Germans. Look at what the Germans did to other Germans and other Europeans when they had a chance."

I would. The US found in Germany a top-quality labor force. Meaning that once the physical infrastructure was rebuild everything worked smoothly. In Iraq, you don't have these skilled engineers, chimists etc... Moreover, German have a a deep respect for authority while most Iraqis are a bunch of hot blooded Arab machos behaving like cow-boys.

"Iraq was and is full of young males who are unemployed and a foreign entity is occupying their country so what's there to do? Clearly the Americans felt more affinity with European culture and can understand them. That's not the case in Iraq."

I agree with on this point. But note that Lebanon's cultural affinity with Syria did not make the occupation less painful.

"But you know if the Iraqis had capitulated completely Iraq may have become a very viable nation. But that's fantasy world

To be honest with you it's not healthy for the US to "win" in Iraq. It would set a terrible precedent for future wars."

Again an Arab loser who want to lose again and again. Ever wonder why Arabs are such losers? It's because of their mentality. Iraq had a chance to become a beacon of liberty in this region. You want it to become another wasteland like Afghanistan. And then you complain about Arab rulers and the west being responsible for your situation. Ha!

At 1/12/2006 12:54:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

JAM you're unfair with Bashar. You see, the guy wasn't really in power these last 5 years, it was the old guard so give him another chance.

Is 30 years of your life too much to ask man? Don't be selfish man.

At 1/12/2006 12:55:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

ahnad said:

"You have good points. Let me say that yes, islam is few hundred years behind Christianity as you rightly pointed out. That is the whole problem: How can we accomodate backward people entrenched in their backward ideologies with the modern world?"

It's not Islam that's the problem but large segments of "muslim" populations and not because they are muslims but because they are miseducated.

The bible is replete with outragous and repugnant events. What has changed in "christian" europe is that it has essentially discarded its "christianity" for the enlightened age and rational thought. It took europe hundreds of years to do this after adopting "christianity".

The US and especially Bush is making it less possible for the "muslim" world to enter its enlightened age. A possibility is that when petrol is depleted in the ME the extremist elements within Islam would be less powerful.

At 1/12/2006 01:10:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/12/2006 01:25:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

"The US and especially Bush is making it less possible for the "muslim" world to enter its enlightened age. A possibility is that when petrol is depleted in the ME the extremist elements within Islam would be less powerful"

Yes blame the US. Always the US. Muslim nations are completely innocent for their moral failure. What a sore loser you are, Ugarit.

Other oppressed societies in the world succeed into liberating themeselves, be it the US, the Vietnamese, the Greek. But the Arabs can't do that by themselves, no! They don't have the cultural model to do this. This is why they need some american neo-con to help them find the path of liberty.

At 1/12/2006 01:31:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

"President Bashar al-Assad of Syria secretly incited Iraq's top Shia leader to declare holy war against US and British forces, according to Washington's former administrator in the country.

In his new book, My Year in Iraq, Paul Bremer said he heard the explosive intelligence in October 2003 as sectarian tensions soared across the country following the fall of Saddam Hussein.

News of Assad's actions ‘stunned’ the US administration in Iraq
The report came from an extremely senior source, the supreme leader of Iraq's majority Shia community, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.

According to Mr Bremer, the news was passed to him by Mowaffak al-Rubaie, a senior Shia politician involved in negotiations with the ayatollah. The Syrian leader had apparently recalled the Shia-led uprising against the British in 1920 and urged the Shia to repeat history.

The news "stunned" the US administration in Iraq. "This was an act of extraordinary irresponsibility from Syria's president," Mr Bremer writes. "We had good intelligence showing that many insurgents and terrorists were coming into Iraq through Syria."

But the allegation was far more serious, he says. "This message from Assad essentially incited Shia rebellion. If he were to succeed, the coalition would face an extremely bloody two-front uprising, costing thousands of lives."

The revelation that Syria's leader was trying to stoke unrest inside Iraq goes some way to explaining Washington's unrelenting hostility towards the Damascus regime ever since.


Bashar knows that if the Iraqi liberation succeed, and it will, his ass may be the next in line.

At 1/12/2006 01:52:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This is especially to the supporters of the Assad Regime who they claim is and has been "secular", and how he brought Syria into a Taliban like country under his nose ( isay becase that suits him), and also tto those who pride themselves with islam. unfortunately, i do not have the link because it will not work if you are not registered, and it is in arabic, so may be some smart poster among the very smart who always agree between each other and praise each other may translate it for the Wetsern readers:


ربما يكون الموضوع قديم, و ربما طرح قبل الآن, و الأكيد أنه بعيد عن الأجواء الحالية للمنتدى.

بس شي بيحط الأعل بالكف!

عن: جريدة النور

مدرسة تلغي درس الفائدة وأخرى تحذف فصل "التكاثر البشري"!

كل الوقت الذي أمضاه أحد أصدقائي في تدريس ابنته، التلميذة في الصف السادس، دروساً في كتاب الرياضيات حول الفائدة البسيطة والفائدة المركبة ذهبت عبثاً، فمعلمة الرياضيات لم تضمن ورقة الامتحان أي سؤال من هذين الدرسين. والسبب أن الفائدة حرام. أما معلمة العلوم الطبيعية فحذفت من كتاب العلوم فصلاً كاملاً هو التكاثر البشري.

لم تحدث هذه القصة في أفغانستان أيام طالبان، بل في إحدى المدارس الخاصة بدمشق. وهي مدرسة تعلم طلابها المنهاج السوري بعد تعديله وقصقصته وإعادة تفصيله ليوافق رؤية إدارتها الضيقة الأفق للشريعة الإسلامية.

ولو أن الأمور وقفت عند هذا الحد لكانت نصف مصيبة فقط، ولاستطاع المرء إغماض العين، نصف إغماضة عنها ربما. ولكن المصيبة تكتمل حين يرسل الآباء أولادهم إلى المدرسة (وهي بالمناسبة مدرسة خاصة يدفع الأهل دم قلبهم ليرسلوا أولادهم إليها، وهي رفعت رسومها أكثر من خمسين بالمئة للعام الدراسي الجديد، لتعلمهم المعلمة أن كارثة تسونامي ليست كارثة طبيعية ناجمة عن زلزال عنيف في قاع البحر، وإنما هي غضب من الله على تلك البلدان لأنها تسمح للسياح بأن يأتوا إليها بملابس مخلة بالآداب، إذ يسبحون معاً بملابس السباحة ويختلطون معا ويرتكبون ما لا ندري من الآثام.

وماذا عن الحيوانات الأليفة أيتها الآنسة؟ القط ممكن، أما الكلب فحرام لأنه نجس. ومن حرَّمه؟ لا تمتلك الآنسة جواباً، ولا تريد من الأولاد مناقشة. والتثاؤب بفم مفتوح مكروه لأن الشيطان يدخل من فمك إلى جوفك. والقمر انشق، وهذا حسن، وممكن من الناحية الدينية، أما أن تطلب من الأولاد النظر إليه من خلال منظار ليروا الشق بأم أعينهم، فهذا امتهان للعلم وللدين معاً، من قبل شخص لا يجب أن يكون معلماً ولا داعية، لأنه يسيء إلى الاثنين.

إن عقلية تحرم اقتناء الكلاب والتثاؤب، وترفض تدريس فصول من الكتب المدرسية المقررة، جديرة أن تنتهي بطلابها إلى مزيد من التحجر والتخلف والتعصب المذموم. وهو تعصب يحرم على الأولاد مشاهدة التلفزيون باستثناء قناتي المجد واقرأ، وفق توجيه المعلمة، وهما قناتان إسلاميتان تروجان للعنف والتعصب والانغلاق.

والإنترنت؟ لا بأس به، ولكن علينا أن نختار المواقع بعناية. وأي المواقع تنصحين به أيتها الآنسة؟ موقع سجن أبو غريب. هكذا تجيب معلمة الفصل الثالث. ترى أية ردات فعل ستتكون عند ولد أو بنت في الثامنة يشاهد فظائع سجن أبو غريب.

لن يكون ثمة فائدة الآن للحديث عن اختلاط الصبيان والبنات. فرغم أن المدرسة مختلطة، بحكم القانون على الأرجح، إلا أن الفصل بين الصبيان والبنات فصل فظ وجائر ومتعسف. وهو أشد وطأة من المدارس المنفصلة، حيث يتعلم الأولاد والبنات في مدارس مستقلة. فهناك لن تكون عقوبة الصبي الذي يرتكب ذنباً وضعه بين بنتين. ذلك منتهى الانتهاك لكرامة الولد والبنت معاً، وهو لا يعمل إلا على تنمية الخوف من الجنس الآخر بدل فهمه وقبوله والعيش معه. وهو لن يؤدي إلا إلى المزيد من العلاقات المشوهة بين الجنسين، القائمة على العنف والخوف والإكراه، وربما الاغتصاب.

وإذا كانت تلك طريقة تفكير المعلمات، فإن من المفهوم كيف تحذف إدارة المدرسة فصلاً كاملاً من كتاب قررته وزارة التربية. والسبب: أنه يبحث في التكاثر ويشرح الأعضاء التناسلية عند الجنسين. وإذا كان سلوك المعلمة وإدارة المدرسة مفهوماً، فإن سلوك وزارة التربية ومديرية التربية في دمشق غير مفهوم على الإطلاق. وهما إذ تتجاهلان خروج هذه المدرسة عن المنهاج الذي أقرته الوزارة تؤسس لسابقة تبدأ هنا ولا نعرف أين يمكن أن تنتهي.

هذه نقطة. ولكن الأهم من ذلك أن الوزارة بتجاهلها، والمعلمة بجهلها، وإدارة المدرسة بتواطئها، إنما يساعدون على السماح للأولاد أن يتعرفوا على الجنس الآخر فقط من خلال ما يسترقونه من أحاديث الكبار وما ينقله إليهم أقرانهم الأكبر سناً، ثم من خيالاتهم التي يمكن أن تدفع بهم نحو المرض والعنف والاكتئاب.

بالمقابل نرى كتباً تؤلف في العالم الآن خصيصاً للأطفال بلغة مبسطة وجذابة وبصور توضيحية لا تخدش الحياء بقدر ما تضيف إلى ذخيرة الولد والبنت، تخبرهم عن مجاهل أجسادهم والفروق بين الذكر والأنثى. وهذا ما يساعد على بناء جيل ذكي ومبدع هناك، بينما يصر الجهلة فينا على تخريج أجيال تحفظ ولا تفهم، وتخاف ولا تخجل، وتنقل ولا تبدع.

والغريب أن تكون المعلمة، ومن ورائها الإدارة ومديرية التربية والوزارة، أكثر تزمتاً من رجال دين عاشوا قبل مئات السنين وصنفوا مؤلفات عن تشريح الجسم البشري والخلافات بين الجنسين والزواج والعلاقات الجنسية السليمة، بينما تصر معلماتنا الفاضلات ومعلمونا الأفاضل أن يصنفوا ذلك في خانة التابوات. وأكثر، إن في النص القرآني والأحاديث النبوية الكثير من المعلومات التفصيلية عن هذه المسألة، بينما اجتهدت مدرِّستنا الفاضلة بتحريم السباحة للبنات. لا، ليست السباحة المختلطة، بل السباحة إطلاقاً، وذلك لأنها تسبب لهن عقداً نفسية، على ذمة معلمة الصف السادس. وليس هذا غريباً على عقلية أفتت بأن المرأة لا يجوز لها فتح الإنترنت إلا بوجود محرم. وهذا ليس من عندي وإنما من عند شيخ جليل اسمه سعد الغامدي، والمصدر لمن يريد جريدة (القبس) الكويتية.

بيد أن الأمور لن تقف هنا. قالت المعلمة، وقد اجتهدت وأفتت، إن تناول البيتزا حرام. وحين أراد صديقي أن يستفسر الأمر، ليزيد من معلوماته الدينية، تراجعت المعلمة وقالت: لا، ليست حراماً ولكنها مكروهة!

لمن يريد مزيداً من التفاصيل: اسم المدرسة دوحة الرحاب، وعنوانها: المزة الغربية - دمشق.

At 1/12/2006 02:20:00 PM, Blogger ugarit said...

Vox said:

"The US found in Germany a top-quality labor force. Meaning that once the physical infrastructure was rebuild everything worked smoothly. In Iraq, you don't have these skilled engineers, chimists etc... Moreover, German have a a deep respect for authority while most Iraqis are a bunch of hot blooded Arab machos behaving like cow-boys."

Agreed Germany had and still has a top-quality labor force. The US' intentions were much better in Germany. The Germans were able to rebuilt because the money went to Germans and Germans were employed. While in Iraq very little money is given to Iraqis and very few Iraqis are employed to reconstruct. Bush and company are sleazy businessmen who are not interested in rebuilding. Much of the money has gone to US corporations who are friends of this administration. This is really a mafia on global scale.

At 1/12/2006 02:45:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Vox is telling me that I am unfair with Bashar:

""JAM you're unfair with Bashar. You see, the guy wasn't really in power these last 5 years, it was the old guard so give him another chance. ""

I am giving him 2 more weeks to straighten out or get out.

Thanks for reminding me.

At 1/12/2006 03:28:00 PM, Blogger Vox Populi - Agent Provocateur said...

Two weeks is not enough. Bashar needs 30 years at least. He is only asking you for 30 years of your life.

And if Bashar fails, at least give a chance to his son (and the son of his son, and the son of the son of his son and the... OK you got it).

You need to stop being selfish, and think about the others (like Maher el Assad, Bushra el Assad, Majed el Assad and all the other Assads to be born).

At 1/12/2006 03:30:00 PM, Blogger ActiveListener said...

JAM, please go back to giving us quality and not quantity.

I am finding it harder and harder to read you because there is too much too often, and you are losing your temper and dignity and allowing others to bait you.

Even when people like Engineeringchange have made some sympathetic remarks you don't acknowlege this but just bark furiously.

I am really disappointed this is happening. Please give us back the JAM we want to read. I'm sure he's still there.

At 1/12/2006 06:09:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

This post has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 1/12/2006 06:13:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...


I wonder if you are giving me a lesson in civility in the language you have used? I think you need to attend some schooling in the subject before you attempt to teach it. I remember I have only agreed with you once or twice, and always found EC as an ass licker for the regime, and he has been defending the regime for months. I do not care what he or people like him think. I said this long ago: I can not be civil with the men of the regime because they are not worth a hello. I despise them with all I got.

Then, you obviously agree with what the one calling himself "Alterion". He started it by stating categorically his low level racism or prejiduce against me as an Alawi, and expressed that he was not believing my being in opposition to the regime, and if I am I must be working for Rifaat Assad, (a refuse of the Bashar regime). This, you found a fine thing, don't you?

having seen so many like this guy always not believing an alawi that he could be against the Assad regime, being so fearful when facing an Alawi, and at the same time lieing and expressing friendship, etc... I did not need more than those words he uttered to conclude and rifghtfully so that Sunnis, whether on the Internet or in real life as just what I have desrcibed you/them in my posts. I am sure you find his attacks and accusations (understandable), and that is because you are no different, an sob Sunni Muslim.

Thank you


At 1/12/2006 06:34:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Religious Stoning Ritual Sparks Panic, Nearly 400 Die
(stoning , only one n ). got

At Least 345 People Die in Hajj Stampede


MINA, Saudi Arabia (AP) - Muslim pilgrims tripped over luggage while hurrying to ritually stone the devil Thursday, causing a crush that trampled at least 345 people to death in the latest stampede to mar Islam's annual hajj.

Saudi authorities have sought for years to ease the flow of increasingly mammoth crowds, but the tragedy underlined the difficulty in managing one of the biggest religious events in the world, which this time drew more than 2.5 million pilgrims.

The deaths on the final day of stoning came a week after another hajj disaster - the Jan. 5 collapse of a building being used as a pilgrims' hotel that killed 76 people in Mecca.

In the stoning ritual, all the pilgrims must pass a series of three ``pillars'' called al-Jamarat, which represent the devil and which the faithful pelt with stones to purge themselves of sin.

The site in the desert of Mina outside the holy city of Mecca is a notorious bottleneck in the weeklong pilgrimage and has seen deadly incidents in seven of the past 17 years, including a stampede in 1990 that killed 1,426 people and one in 2004 that killed 244.

``I heard screaming and ... saw people jumping over each other,'' said Suad Abu Hamada, an Egyptian pilgrim. ``Police starting pulling out bodies. The bodies were piled up. I couldn't count them, they were too many.''

Bodies covered in white sheets lined the pavement near the ramp where the stampede occurred, and emergency workers rushed the injured away on stretchers. Police cleared part of the site, but thousands of pilgrims continued the stoning ritual.

The Interior Ministry put the death toll at 345, and the Health Ministry said 289 people were injured. State-run Al-Ekhbariyah television said most of the victims were from South Asia.

After the 2004 stampede, Saudi officials widened ramps leading to a platform the width of an eight-lane highway where the three pillars are located and created more emergency exits to accommodate the crowds.

Each of the small, round pillars also were replaced with 85-foot-long walls to allow more people to stone them at once without jostling each other. The walls were extended through the bottom of the platform so more pilgrims can carry out the stoning from below.

Thursday's stampede occurred below the platform, near one of the four big ramps. In theory, the crowds are supposed to enter the platform using two of the ramps and exit down the other two, but pilgrims often ignore the rules.

Thousands of pilgrims were rushing to complete the last of the three days of the stoning ritual before sunset when some of them began to trip over dropped baggage, causing a large pileup, said Maj. Gen. Mansour al-Turki, spokesman for the Interior Ministry.

Many pilgrims carry personal belongings - tents, clothes and bags of food - as they move between the various stages of the hajj.

``This was fate destined by God,'' al-Turki said. ``Some of the pilgrims were undisciplined and hasty to finish the ritual as soon as possible.''

Mina General Hospital, a small facility near the al-Jamarat site, was filled with injured, and some victims had to be sent to hospitals in Mecca and Riyadh, Dr. Ismail Abdul-Zaher said.

Many pilgrims expressed frustration over the repeated disasters at al-Jamarat.

``This should not happen every year. It should be stopped, it's a scandal. There must be a way to organize this better,'' said Anwar Sadiqi, a pilgrim from Pakistan.

Ensuring a smooth pilgrimage is a key concern for Saudi Arabia's royal family, which bolsters its legitimacy by touting its role as the ``custodian of the holy cities'' of Mecca and Medina, where Islam's 7th century prophet Muhammad was born and lived.

Crown Prince Sultan Bin Abdel Aziz told reporters the kingdom had ``spared no effort'' to avoid such disasters but, he added, ``it cannot stop what God has preordained. It is impossible.''

``We feel pain and sorrow for them and for their families and we send our condolences,'' the prince said on Al-Ekhbariya television.

The hajj is a complex balance of safety with Islam's requirements that every able-bodied Muslim should perform the pilgrimage at least once. Saudi Arabia sets a quota of participants, allowing every nation to send 1,000 pilgrims for every 1 million in population.

The three-day stoning ritual in particular is a nightmarish problem in crowd dynamics.

Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims must move up the ramps onto the platform, maneuver from pillar to pillar and hit each with seven stones, then exit.

Many of the pilgrims are in a rush because of the time constraints on the ritual and their anxiety about past stampedes.

Traditionally, stoning was carried out from midday to sunset.

Shiite Muslim clerics have issued edicts allowing pilgrims to do the stoning in the morning, and some Sunni clerics have followed suit in an attempt to space out the crowds. But some clerics following Saudi Arabia's strict Wahhabi interpretation of Islam urge the faithful to stick to the midday start.

About 60,000 Saudi police and soldiers patrolled the Mina plain once the stoning ritual began Tuesday to direct pilgrims. Helicopters flew overhead, and authorities monitored the pilgrims from a control room through closed-circuit TV.

But some people complained that police did little to help.

``They look indifferent. They don't carry out their duties seriously,'' Iftikhar Hussein, an Iraqi pilgrim, said. ``This looks like a garage rather than a holy site.''

``If hajj is a duty for every able-bodied Muslim, it should be a duty for the government'' to ensure it is safe, she added.

Signs giving directions are few, and pilgrims often ignore regulations. Peddlers selling food and souvenirs also impede the pilgrims.

Saudi Arabia has announced plans for further changes to the site in coming years that it says will allow 500,000 pilgrims an hour to carry out the stoning.

Among the changes, the platform is to be expanded to four levels, with 12 entrances and 12 exits. Also, there are plans to bus pilgrims to al-Jamarat from a nearby tent city in the desert rather than allow them to make their own way to the site.

Thursday evening, the highway from Mina to Mecca was packed with buses, trucks and cars carrying pilgrims to the holy city for Friday's final rite of the hajj: the ``farewell tawwaf'' - a walk around the Kaaba, the black stone cube that all Muslims face when they perform daily prayers.

At 1/12/2006 07:25:00 PM, Blogger Nafdik said...

JAM I add my voice to ActiveListener.

While I usually enjoy your multi-faceted persona, I think you got bogged in religious debates that, while very worthy in themselves, are not the main concern of readers of this blog.

Probably the only area of interest would be the Alawi faith and its religious hierarchy, that is quite obscure to outsiders and on this you seem silent.

At 1/12/2006 08:48:00 PM, Blogger Joseph ALi Mohammed said...

Sure, though I am not allowed to speak about it, you know.., the fact is that God is in direct contact with its leaders and he likes to stay private. no one should know what is going on. Gebraeil is the direct son of one of the Alawi religious figures. I hope you keep it a secret. please

At 1/13/2006 11:43:00 AM, Blogger Nafdik said...

I swear on the Mustache of the Dktor that your secret will stay between the 2 of us :)


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