excerpts from US delegation visit to Syria, Feb 2015

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Ramsey Clark and US delegation meet with four French representatives, ” naughty Frenchmen, against our government.”

-By Eva Bartlett, Mar 22, 2015

It was as though we were supposed to talk about terrorism as ‘Freedom': Freedom to kill, Freedom to destroy, Freedom to kidnap, to loot…This was viewed by some as signs of ‘Freedom’. Arab and Western media, channels like Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, have played a vital role in confusing issues.” [see my related: “freedom”: Homs resident speaks of the early days of the “crisis”]

The words of Syrian Minister of Information, Omran al-Zoubi, on February 25, 2015, to our delegation of six US anti-war activists and myself, visiting Damascus Feb 24-26. Led by long time advocates for peace and justice, Ramsey Clark & Sara Flounders of the International Action Center, and by former Congresswoman and anti-war activist Cynthia McKinney, our delegation meets with an array of people in the continued effort to hear and transmit the wishes of the people in Syria, for a peaceful resolution to the NATO & co war on Syria. Following are some excerpts and musings from our various meetings and visits, including excerpts from some of my previously-published writings, for a full account of the visit.

Speaking in Arabic, Minister al-Zoubi outlines some of the main points with respect to the situation in Syria:

What is happening in Syria is not a fight between the government and the people. If it were so, it would have ended very quickly…if the people had wanted. It’s about the people and terrorists. They used the ‘Arab Spring’ to send extremists to Syria. Libya is an example, and Iraq…The terrorist organizations we face have branched off from the Muslim Brotherhood (MB). In Afghanistan, al-Qaeda belonged to the MB, in Egypt, Turkey, Palestine. Erdogan himself is a member. Terrorism can’t be legal in one place and illegal in another. It is always illegal.

Sometimes, I try to understand how this happened. I ask myself, ‘Why would they burn a school, blow up cars in front of a school? Why would they destroy a historic village like Ma’loula, where they speak the language of Christ? Why would they try to destroy a center for agrarian reform?’ In the end, I can’t find any answers… CONTINUE READING

Avaaz call for a ‘no-fly zone’ in Syria.

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Tim Anderson graphic

Mar 19, 2015, Interventions Watch

“Avaaz describe themselves as a ‘global web movement to bring people-powered politics to decision-making everywhere’, and are fairly well known within human rights and development circles.

They had previously used their reach and status to drum up support for a ‘no-fly zone’ over Libya (a call which was ultimately realised, to disasterous effect), and this isn’t the first time they’ve called for a ‘no-fly zone’ over Syria either.

Their work within Syria itself has attracted controversy, with Jillian C. York accusing them of being ‘naive’, among other things (lacking transparency, taking credit for work they haven’t carried out, potentially endangering lives, etc).

They’ve now reiterated their call for a ‘no-fly zone’ over Syria, in response to alleged chlorine gas attacks carried out by Syrian regime forces.

I just want to quickly outline why I think their call is misguided at best.
CONTINUE READING

The real Syrian moderates: voices of reason

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Mar 15, 2015, Eva Bartlett, Russia Today

[re-published at: Dissident Voice and in Arabic at Dr. Shaaban’s FB page]

While the Western-led, anti-Assad bloc mind-blowingly speaks of arming non-existent “moderates” to fight in Syria, they also continue to demonize and silence the very voices that offer a true means of bringing peace and stability back to the region.

Two of these voices are: Political and Media Adviser to President al-Assad, Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban; and Syria’s highest Muslim official and scholar, Grand Mufti Dr. Ahmad Badr Al-Din Hassoun. Both are highly-educated and convey messages of dialogue, understanding, and peace. And both seemingly terrify the West, which has been quick to sanction and deny them visas, lest the anti-Syria lies and propaganda be challenged before a Western audience.

From February 24-26, 2015, the US delegation I accompanied met a number of important Syrian figures, including Mufti Hassoun and Dr. Shaaban.

Dr. Shaaban is known to her American friends as “the bridge,” she says. “I always wanted to be a bridge between Syria and Western cultures.” She has lived abroad, earning a PhD in English literature from Warwick University, on a Fulbright scholarship at Duke University, and later as professor at Eastern Michigan University.

She speaks affectionately and respectfully of Americans: “I enjoyed American people, their hospitality and kindness.” Affection for the people aside, she is heavily critical of the US government and allies’ prolonged attack on Syria.

Not only has the West backed and trained terrorists in Syria, the so-called “opposition” they hand-picked to represent Syrians can’t even pretend to do so. “They adopted personalities who haven’t lived in Syria for 30 years! Further, they took the wrong step in closing embassies, instead of communicating with us and observing from the ground. In the name of ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’ they are destroying our country.”
CONTINUE READING

on the dastardly US drone that flew no more in Syrian airspace

Lilly Martin Sahiounie​:

“March 17, 2015: Latakia, Syria. At about 7:30 PM local Syrian time (GMT +2) the Syrian Air Defense system shot down an American drone. This was an unmanned aircraft called MQ1. This specific drone carried anti-tank weapons, for the purpose to destroying tanks used by military. The local residents of the beach area called Ibn Hani and Ras as Shemra (just north of Latakia city) saw the Syrian missiles fired at the drone, and then looking at the sky they saw the drone explode. As it was coming down, it hit the top corner of a house. No one was injured in the house, or on the ground. I actually heard the explosion from far away. It is my theory that this drone was looking for information about the Syrian Army position and success in the area called Selma, just east of Latakia. It is possible that this drone had orders to fire on the Syrian tanks, thus helping the Free Syrian Army and their allies such as Al Qaeda, Jibhat al Nusra and other Radical Islamic terrorists. The Obama government support the terrorists and have helped them for 4 years. This drone has nothing to do with the US fight on ISIS, which is hundreds of kilometers away from Latakia, and has no relationship to the drone being shot down. CONTINUE READING

Imam and scholar Zafar Bangash: staging the “revolution”


Mar 9, 2015

Imam and scholar Zafar Bangash on: Islamophobia, Harper’s proposed draconian new anti-terrorism legislation (Bill C-51), and Canada’s military mission in Iraq and Syria. Bangash is a world-renowned Muslim scholar, editor of Crescent International Magazine, author, and imam at the York Regional Islamic Centre in Markham, Ontario

**note: from around 16:00, Zafar lays out the behind-the-scenes meetings which planned the war on Syria (aka the “uprising”):

-former French Foreign Minister, Roland Dumas, two years before 2011, was told by British officials  that Britain would launch operations in Syria, would France be interested in joining?
CONTINUES

FIRST ANNUAL MALCOLM X FILM FESTIVAL: starts BELFAST, SAT 14th March

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From the FB event page of the Malcolm X Movement

“One of the greatest living revolutionaries, Leila Khaled is CONFIRMED to speak via live internet link to the first of seven events of the FIRST ANNUAL MALCOLM X FILM FESTIVAL – organised by the Malcolm X Movement in BELFAST at Culturlann on the Falls Road 1-630pm THIS SATURDAY 14th March.

Leila Khaled is a senior PLO member, elected member to the PA, and a leading member of the radical socialist and anti-imperialist Palestinian organisation the legendary Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

Comrade Leila will also be joined at the event in person by Saeb Shaath, a accomplished advocate, formerly a diplomat and revolutionary for the Palestinian cause. It is a pleasure and honour to have Comrade Saeb joining us for this event.

The Malcolm X Movement requests you publicise this event page and encourage people to attend and make this Saturday’s and the whole series of events a success. ”
CONTINUE READING