Damascus, Life Returns 5 Years After NATO Destabilization Efforts: A snapshot of life in Damascus, June and July 2016

The croissant stand in Aamarie district of Thomas Gate is known not only to Damascenes but visitors from other areas of Syria. While prices for most goods have risen all across Syria, the stand keeps its prices low: 125 Syrian pounds per sumptuous croissant. On the first day of 'Eid celebrations the stand is packed.

The croissant stand in Aamarie district of Thomas Gate is known not only to Damascenes but visitors from other areas of Syria. While prices for most goods have risen all across Syria, the stand keeps its prices low: 125 Syrian pounds per sumptuous croissant. On the first day of ‘Eid celebrations the stand is packed.

Life for many in Damascus, Syria, is beginning to regain a sense of normalcy. Once besieged by foreign fighters, the ancient city and its residents struggle to rebuild their lives, land and livelihood, rejoicing in the simple mundanity of day-to-day life.

July 20, 2016, MintPress News (Global Research, Uprooted Palestinians)

Damascus, Eva Bartlett — On prior visits to Damascus, staying in the Old City, the sound of mortars being fired from terrorist-held districts outside of the city was a constant. In recent months, the mortars on Damascus have stopped. Previously, Jebhat al-Nusra (Al Qaeda in Syria), Jaysh al-Islam and the Free Syrian Army, among other terrorist factions, rained mortars daily on residential areas of Damascus, hitting schools, homes, vehicles and pedestrians, killing and maiming indiscriminately, leaving civilians, including children, with critical injuries and amputations.

With the recent absence of mortars, Damascenes have opened outdoor establishments where before it was formerly too dangerous. Sidewalks cafes and outdoor eateries open at night were unthinkable less than half a year ago, let alone rooftop cafes and lounges. Although Syrians nation-wide suffer immensely from an economy devastated by war and western sanctions, in Damascus there is a renewed sense of defiance, a refusal to give in, or as a young man in his twenties visiting from Aleppo said: “They have their own war against death by living.”

A snapshot of life in Damascus, June and July 2016:

Wedding procession in the Old City of Damascus. Love and life continue. A newcomer to Syria might be surprised by the vibrancy of life among Damascus residents, who have lived under al-Nusra and Jaysh al-Islam mortars for years, as well as cruel sanctions. “Tawadna” is a phrase that is heard often in Syria: “We got used to it.” Even when mortars rained down, Syrians celebrated their weddings and festivals. Now, in Damascus at least, it is safer to do so outside.

Wedding procession in the Old City of Damascus. Love and life continue. A newcomer to Syria might be surprised by the vibrancy of life among Damascus residents, who have lived under al-Nusra and Jaysh al-Islam mortars for years, as well as cruel sanctions. “Tawadna” is a phrase that is heard often in Syria: “We got used to it.” Even when mortars rained down, Syrians celebrated their weddings and festivals. Now, at least, it is safer to do so outside.

 

The book market near the President's Bridge and Damascus Univeristy is an institution in Damascus, known to book lovers who can't afford bookstores. It is one Damascus venue which refused to shut down over the years, mortars or not. In addition to its Arabic books, one can find English language books and cookbooks, English literature, popular English-language thrillers and taudry romance novels.

The book market near the President’s Bridge and Damascus University is an institution in Damascus, known to book lovers who can’t afford regular bookstores. It is one Damascus venue which refused to shut down over the years, mortars or not. In addition to Arabic books, one can find English language books and cookbooks, English literature, popular English-language thrillers and taudry romance novels.

 

In the narrow lanes of Old Damascus, a wooden mosaic artisan explains the techniques of his trade. The tediously-crafted and beautiful woodwork is a favourite for tourists. In spite of the dearth of customers in the past five and a half years, craftsmen and women continue to practise their skills in hopes that when peace returns to Syria, so too will tourists.

In the narrow lanes of Old Damascus, a wooden mosaic artisan explains the techniques of his trade. The tediously-crafted and beautiful woodwork is a favourite for tourists. In spite of the dearth of customers in the past five and a half years, craftsmen and women continue to practise their skills in hopes that when peace returns to Syria, so too will tourists.

 

The Abu Zolouf bar is one among many bars and lounges opened in the East Gate quarter of the Old City in recent months. Two years ago, I sat with the adjacent restaurant owner, Nabil, outside his then-vacant restaurant discussing the frequent mortars that Jebhat al-Nusra and the Free Syrian Army were firing on Damascus, from Jobar, less than 1 km to the northeast. As mortars fell in nearby districts of the Old City, Nabil narrated close-calls he had had with such mortars hitting outside his restaurant. He also lamented the loss of customers in recent years. Since their May 30, 2016, opening, the Abu Zolouf bar has nightly from 70 to 150 patrons looking to relax outdoors.

The Abu Zolouf bar is one among many bars and lounges opened in the East Gate quarter of the Old City in recent months. Two years ago, I sat with the adjacent restaurant owner, Nabil, outside his then-vacant restaurant, discussing the frequent mortars that Jebhat al-Nusra and the Free Syrian Army were firing on Damascus from Jobar, less than 1 km to the northeast. As mortars fell in nearby districts of the Old City, Nabil narrated close-calls he had had with such mortars hitting outside his restaurant. He also lamented the loss of customers in recent years. Since their May 30, 2016, opening, the Abu Zolouf bar has nightly from 70 to 150 patrons looking to relax outdoors.

 

 Le Visage, also in the East Gate quarter, was among the first outdoor establishment to open after the mortars stopped some months ago. From its rooftop position, one can look down on the historic Straight Street leading up to East Gate, as well as see life on balconies opposite, where months prior they were empty. A display of lighted alcohol bottles gleam in the dark, with Jobar less than 1 km beyond. A Damascus youth noted: “Imagine, ISIS are about 4 km away and we are opening new bars. This is the Syrian people.”

Le Visage, also in the East Gate quarter, was among the first outdoor establishments to open after the mortars stopped some months ago. From its rooftop position, one can look down on the historic Straight Street leading up to East Gate, as well as see life on balconies opposite, where months prior they were largely empty. A display of lighted alcohol bottles gleam in the dark, with Jobar less than 1 km directly beyond. A Damascus youth noted: “Imagine, ISIS are about 4 km away and we are opening new bars. This is the Syrian people.”

 

In an artsy restaurant along the Straight Street, stone walls are adorned with the owner's brighly-coloured paintings and a solitary board with the words “Cup of Coffee Pending” at the top. Hekmat Daoud, an artist and prominent costume designer, also the eccentric hospitable owner of Kasida Dimashqia restaurant, employs a tradition he says is common in Naples, Italy. “When paying for their bill, people can pay extra towards free drinks for students or those too poor to afford one.” After a thirsty weekend, only a few promises of coffee remain. “There were more before, but students came and wanted arak and beer,” Daoud laughed.

In an artsy restaurant along the Straight Street, stone walls are adorned with the owner’s brightly-coloured paintings and a solitary board with the words “Cup of Coffee Pending” at the top. Hekmat Daoud, an artist and prominent costume designer, also the eccentric hospitable owner of Kasida Dimashqia restaurant, employs a tradition he says is common in Naples, Italy. “When paying for their bill, people can pay extra towards free drinks for students or those too poor to afford one.” After a thirsty weekend, only a few promises of coffee remain. “There were more before, but students came and wanted Arak and beer,” Daoud laughed.

 

A shared meal with local family in the Old City. After over five years of the war on Syria, prices for all basic goods have risen dramatically, while incomes remain the same or shattered. The Western sanctions on the Syria worsen the situation, hurting the Syrian people and social services the most.

A shared meal with local family in the Old City. After over five years of the war on Syria, prices for all basic goods have risen dramatically, while incomes remain the same or shattered. The Western sanctions on the Syria worsen the situation, hurting the Syrian people and social services the most.

 

 Behind the Umayyad Mosque in Old Damascus, one of tens of volunteers daily helps prepare the Iftar (fast-breaking) meals that the Saaed Association was serving to impoverished Damascus residents, even delivering to those unable to pick up meals themselves. Starting with 3,000 recipients, by the end of Ramadan, the volunteers were providing 10,000 meals daily in Damascus alone, with another combined 7,000 meals prepared in Hama and Homs.

Behind the Umayyad Mosque in Old Damascus, one of tens of volunteers daily helps prepare the Iftar (fast-breaking) meals that the Saaed Association was serving to impoverished Damascus residents, even delivering to those unable to pick up meals themselves. Starting with 3,000 recipients, by the end of Ramadan, the volunteers were providing 10,000 meals daily in Damascus alone, with another combined 7,000 meals prepared in Hama and Homs.

 

 Volunteers from the Saaed Association relax after the second day of 'Eid activities for children. Instead of clothes or money, “we gave children hope and joy,” one volunteer said. In contrast to the sectarianism imposed on Syria by Gulf States and Turkey, Syrians maintain their unity and secularism, emphasized by such volunteers whose allegiance is to humanitarism and helping the less fortunate.

Volunteers from the Saaed Association relax after the second day of ‘Eid activities for children. Instead of clothes or money, “we gave children hope and joy,” one volunteer said. In contrast to the sectarianism imposed on Syria by Gulf States and Turkey, Syrians maintain their unity and secularism, emphasized by such volunteers whose allegiance is to humanitarism and helping the less fortunate.

 

 The phenomenon of children begging in the streets was not common in Syria prior to 2011. While some children work to help surpport their families who have been rendered destitute due to various effects of the war on Syria, according to Damascus locals, the majority of these children work in a sort of forced labour for ring-leaders coming from the eastern Ghouta region. Many associations work to provide basic services to these children. One such volunteer organization provides education and meals, teaching children not only the basics of reading and writing, but also works to instill moral values and give opportunities, however briefly in their work-day, for children to be children.

The phenomenon of children begging in the streets was not common in Syria prior to 2011. While some children work to help support their families who have been rendered destitute due to various effects of the war on Syria, according to Damascus locals, the majority of these children work in a sort of forced labour for ring-leaders coming from the eastern Ghouta region. Many associations work to provide basic services to these children. One such volunteer organization provides education and meals, teaching children not only the basics of reading and writing, but also works to instil moral values and give opportunities, however briefly in their work-day, for children to be children.

 Statistics from the Syrian Ministry of Information (November 2015) cite as many as 50 “members of Syrian mass media establishments” killed while at work or reporting. Thaer Al-Ajlani, top left, was killed on July 27, 2015 when hit with shrapnel from a mortar fired by Jebhat al-Nusra, then occupying much of Jobar. Other martyred journalists have been killed by terrorists' sniper attacks, point-blank assassinations, shellings and gunfire while reporting. Corporate media and international associations to protect journalists have largely ignored the deaths of Syrian journalists killed by western-backed terrorist factions.

Statistics from the Syrian Ministry of Information (November 2015) cite as many as 50 “members of Syrian mass media establishments” killed while at work or reporting. Thaer Al-Ajlani, top left, was killed on July 27, 2015 when hit with shrapnel from a mortar fired by Jebhat al-Nusra, then occupying much of Jobar. Other martyred journalists have been killed by terrorists’ sniper attacks, point-blank assassinations, shelling and gunfire while reporting. Corporate media and international associations to protect journalists have largely ignored the deaths of Syrian journalists killed by western-backed terrorist factions.

 

Stopping to buy water in an Old City shop, the owner's only issue with me taking a photograph of his fridge is that he wants to dust off the photos of President Assad a bit first, apologizing that they are old, from well-before the current crisis.

Stopping to buy water in an Old City shop, the owner’s only issue with me taking a photograph of his fridge is that he wants to dust off the photos of President Assad a bit first, apologizing that they are old, from well-before the current crisis.

 

 “We are here and will stay here. Our leader and our army is our hope.” The sign speaks the sentiment of Syrians I have met in Aleppo, Homs, Latakia, Sweida, Ma'loula, and Damascus. The popularity of President al-Assad has even been admitted by western sources in recent years as at least 70%, although popular sentiment on the streets would put the figure even higher.

“We are here and will stay here. Our leader and our army is our hope.” The sign speaks the sentiment of Syrians I have met in Aleppo, Homs, Latakia, Sweida, Ma’loula, and Damascus. The popularity of President al-Assad has even been admitted by western sources in recent years as at least 70%, although popular sentiment on the streets would put the figure even higher.

 

Children on the second day of 'Eid. Although Damascus is largely secure and safe, many living in the city are directly affected by the war on Syria, with many having lost a family member, been rendered financially-insecure, or been displaced from areas of the country.

Children on the second day of ‘Eid. Although Damascus is largely secure and safe, many living in the city are directly affected by the war on Syria, with many having lost a family member, been rendered financially-insecure, or been displaced from areas of the country.

 

SEE ALSO:  My Writings From Syria

Interview on Syria and related, on the Richie Allen Show

*June 8 interview

Related Links:

-on Dr. Bouthaina Shaaban:
-Israel is treating al-Qaeda terrorists in their hospitals:
“Israel is treating al-Qaeda terrorists in their hospitals and enabling their transit back and forth into Syria, as well as arming them—even Israeli media have reported that Israel is providing aid to al-Qaeda terrorists; even the UN has reported on Israeli soldiers interacting with Jebhat al-Nusra in the occupied Syrian Golan;”
-on *actual* hospitals bombed in Aleppo (by western-backed terrorists):

POST CONTINUES

Please Support My Syrian Voices Book Project


*photo: Resilience of Syrians, Old City of Homs, December 2015.

As many readers will know, I have visited Syria four times, between April 2014 and December 2015—independently on a journalist’s visa and as part of two peace delegations. When in Syria as a writer, I visited key places—including liberated Homs and Ma’loula, terror-bombed regions of Homs, and the Yarmouk district, which has been focus of slick propaganda by anti-Syria corporate media and so-called human rights groups—and have conducted numerous interviews, with Syrian political and religious leaders, as well as Syrian civilians.

I have taken many photographs and videos, collected numerous personal testimonies, undertaken my own research and investigations, visited hospitals and refugee centres, and—in every area that I visited—have conversed with Syrians about what they feel is the cause of the problems in Syria, the solution, and on their insistence for Syria’s sovereignty, and on their support for the Syrian Arab Army and their president.

In the months since my last trip, I have been transcribing interviews and testimonies and writing articles based on them, writing about my personal impressions based on my visits to Syria, and challenging the latest corporate media lies and propaganda campaigns.

I will be returning to Syria, as soon as possible, and for that I must ask for financial assistance to make this trip possible. [see:  Syrian Voices Book Project on GoFundMe ]

Why am I compelled to go to Syria?

In order to write a book that prioritizes Syrian voices from Syria: truths from some of the most highly-misrepresented, lied about or plainly ignored areas of Syria.

To do justice to the full spectrum of the stories of Syrians as told by them, it is essential that I visit areas I not previously been to, areas that have been liberated since I was last there and areas that are enduring especially egregious suffering—such as in Aleppo under terrorist bombs.

To be able to meet costs associated with overseas flights, as well as travel and related expenses in Syria, it is necessary for me to fund-raise, because my current work as a writer and related advocacy work is either unpaid or paid very little.

If this book project, as well as my ability to write additional articles from Syria, is something you wish to and are able to support financially, I would gratefully appreciate any and all contributions.

If you would like to support my work, but are not in a position to do so financially, I would be grateful if you could share this fundraising appeal with others, as this will give a tremendous boost to my appeal.

Full details of my work and plans can be accessed on my gofundme page.

*NOTE: For those wish to donate but prefer to use Paypal, follow this link

For those who prefer to avoid Payal transaction fees, e-transfers are an option. Canadian banks only however.
 

Supporters’ Comments on Facebook and GoFundMe:

 
“Your work in raising awareness for the Syrian people and combating the lying war propaganda cannot be valued in currency. Thank you for committing to writing this.”
– Angelis Dania
 
“you are an example for what a real journalist should be
you do it all yourself, take all the hardships and offer truth to those who are thirsty for it
you are of a different nationality, different language, different culture, yet you turn up to be loyal to Syria more than many of its children..
Great work Eva”

-Jamila and Shababeek شبابيك are with you  

“Eva, thanks for doing this work. It gives voice to Syrians and is critical for countering the vicious propaganda of the “left” (fake left) imperialists who are effectively supporting foreign-backed Wahabbit-Takfiri terrorists waging a dirty war on Syria.”
-Daniel Wirt

“Eva’s work on Syria has been some of the most fearless and honest that I have yet to come across. Rigorously diligent, and undeterred by the tidal-waves of propaganda, Eva has continuously taken it upon herself to seek out the truth through first-hand experience and documentation on the ground, which she has then freely shared with us all. Not only does this proliferate the voices of those who’s suffering is silenced because they do not conform to the objectives of imperialism, but it provides all of us with a window into Syria that is being hidden, as if we ourselves were there on the ground, freed from the filters of our media. Only with true and honest on-the-ground reporting can we hope to understand and thus provide solutions, and therefore I urge everyone to support Eva’s journey into Syria, and to support truly independent journalism which is committed to alleviating the suffering of the Syrian people, even if that means taking a long, hard look at our responsibility for causing the atrocities. This project will be an invaluable asset to anyone who truly cares about understanding the conflict, and those who care about understanding the role we play in the world, apart from what the media will comfortably tell you. I gratefully pledge my support, and hope all will do the same.”
-Steven Chovenac

“Please support this in any way you can. Eva Bartlett is a truly brilliant journalist and activist for justice & truth, and we all know who rare that sort of stuff is.”
-Hayat Islam

“The best money you will ever spend! Give some. Trust me. Canada’s Rachel Corrie needs your help. Fund the amazing journalism of Eva Bartlett. Help truth and justice rise to the top.”
-Denis Rancourt

“In a just world, a brilliant and courageous person like Eva Bartlett would have all of the funding and support necessary to carry on her work. But it is not a just world. It is only through the efforts of people like Eva to bring truth to this world of lies that it may become more so. Please read her full description of the proposed project and give if you can or share the fundraising appeal so that others may become aware of it.”
– David Lorig

“Supporting Eva Bartlett will support the people of ‪#‎Syria in their struggle for ‪#‎Peace & ‪#‎sovereignty!”
-Nino Pagliccia

 “I couldn’t think of someone more worthy than Eva Bartlett to receive support. Her work on Syria has been absolutely astounding from day 1.”
-Valentina Capurri

“Dear friends … please read and whatever contribution you can make for this brave journalist is highly appreciated … Thanks”
-Waseem Abbas

“Please support the wonderful independent journalist Eva Bartlett, someone who’s doing an priceless work on Syria. A true fighter for justice and truth for THE SYRIAN PEOPLE”
-Julia Kaya

 

From my GoFundMe Book Project Campaign:

 

In early 2011, after years of covert US funding to instigate a Western-supported “opposition” in Syria (“Between 2006 to 2010, the US spent 12 million dollars in order to support and instigate demonstrations and propaganda against the Syrian government. WikiLeaks released over 7000 secret diplomatic cables that document that funding.” source), the corporate media began telling the fairytale of “revolution” in Syria and of “unarmed protesters” being killed by the Syrian government.

Initially, there was confusion about the events that took place in Syria in early 2011. But since then, it has been well established that these events were an integral part of the NATO alliance’s attempt to impose a puppet government on Syria.

Various journalists, reporters, and analysts have documented the violence and sectarianism of the so-called unarmed protesters, including the many massacres that they and the many terrorist factions have committed. I referenced many of these journalists, reporters, and analysts in my own analysis, Deconstructing the NATO Narrative on Syria

Journalists, reporters, and analysts, be they Syrians on the ground or non-Syrians who travel to witness events and listen to Syrian voices, have clearly and consistently outlined how the global war on Syria came about. They have also documented the ongoing atrocities being perpetrated by Western/Turkish/Gulf and Zionist-backed terrorists in Syria.

Nonetheless, false narratives and blatant lies continue to be put forth by the corporate media and lying “Human Rights” groups with ties to the CIA, US State Department and/or colour-revolution schemer George Soros.

In recent years, many books have been written on Syria, and with the exception of a few, they have been war-promoting books based on false allegations; unnamed activists; the fraudulent one-man Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, located in Coventry in the UK—who himself gleans his data from “unnamed activists”; and the above-mentioned human rights groups complex.

What has been sorely missing, aside from a few honest books on Syria like this detailed and insightful one by Professor Tim Anderson, are accounts of Syrians living in Syria.

I propose to fill the gap with my own book project, Syrian Voices.

· I  will be using information and accounts gathered during my previous four trips to Syria over the last two years.

· It is essential for me to return to Syria to obtain more material, in order to write a book that prioritizes Syrian voices from Syria: truths from some of the most highly-misrepresented, lied about or simply ignored areas of the country.

· This book will give Syrian voices a platform to address readers who want to understand what is really happening in Syria.

·  Having made multiple visits to Homs—the liberated Old City, the entrance to al-Waer where terrorists remain, al-Zahra’a car-bombed neighbourhood—as
well as Lattakia, liberated ancient Ma’loula , Sweida, the Yarmouk district & centres for displaced persons from Yarmouk , and the Old City of Damascus, I have already collected many Syrian stories—voices and realities which contradict the corporate media’s account of events.

· This book will also include stories and information obtained specifically from:
-Syrians living in areas subjected to terrorist bombs, missiles, and mortars— attacks that I experienced repeatedly while in Damascus in 2014, and
-Syrians in areas which have been liberated from foreign-backed terrorists.

· In addition to highlighting the sordid realities Syrians have been facing over the past five plus years, I also wish to highlight other realities, and indeed, the positives:
Victories and liberation of terrorist-occupied areas, such as Nubl, Zahra’a, and Palmyra.
Syrian resilience: After over five years of the global war on Syria, as well as criminal sanctions that have devastated the Syrian people, Syrians, miraculously, remain resilient. They have bravely adjusted to the continuous hardship, stress and anxiety of the war on their country and cherish their dignity and their resolve. They are devoted to peace and security for their country and proudly wait and work for full peace and security to return. In spite of the war, they continue to celebrate, to marry, to study, to participate in everyday human life to the fullest extent possible. For this alone, but not only for this, they deserve our greatest respect.
Support for internally-displaced persons (IDPs), by both civil society and the government, in Lattakia, Tartous, Damascus and Sweida—to name the main centres that have absorbed millions of IDPs, although there are others as well.
Volunteerism: Many groups have been established within Syrian civil society to assist their compatriots during this horrific crisis—groups to provide food and meals for Syrians impoverished by the war, groups to visit and feed Syrian soldiers on the front lines, and so many more.
Syrian culture: Syrians have a rich cultural heritage–music, dance, theatre, painting, sculpture, writing, handicrafts and more. Even in times of war, cultural activities continue. Syrians defiantly refuse to be cowed by war and choose to partake in, enjoy and nurture the many aspects of their deep cultural lives.

…campaign continues with my BIO (Gaza, Palestine, Syria solidarity work and writings)

Left photo: in Old City of Homs.  (see: Liberated Homs Residents Challenge Notion of “Revolution” )
Right photo: at entrance to liberated Ma’loula two months after liberation. (see: Devastation…and Inspiration: Recalling Liberated Ma’loula)

Sara Flounders Speech on Syria at Left Forum 2016

In this forum, particularly interesting is the speech given by Sara Flounders, of the International Action Center, on her visits to Syria, on the reasons behind the global war on Syria and the documentation of US planning the destabilization of Syria since at least 2005. Flounders also gives historical context to the lead-up to the 2011-begun war on Syria, as well as the many reasons why the NATO-GCC-Zionist alliance want to destabilize and break apart Syria.

 

Related:

Excerpts from US delegation visit to Syria, Feb 2015, In Gaza

-The Real Syrian Moderates: Voices of Reason (Mufti Hassoun & Dr Bouthaina Shaaban), Mar 15, 2015, Russia Today, in Arabic at Dr. Shaaban’s FB page, Dissident Voice, Uprooted Palestinians, In Gaza

-University Hospital, Damascus: Meeting Victims of Western-backed Mortar and Rocket Terrorism, Mar 3, 2015, In Gaza

-The Terrorism We Support in Syria: A First-hand Account of the Use of Mortars against Civilians, Sep 11, 2014, Zero Anthropology, Global Research, Rabble, Dissident Voice, In Gaza

Deconstructing the NATO Narrative on Syria, Oct 10, 2015, Dissident Voice, Syrian Free Press, Sott.net, World News, Uprooted Palestinians, prominent Norwegian blog, Steigan blogger, prominent Swedish blog, Anders Romelsjö Jinge.se *in Polish: Medium Publiczne and Wirtualna Polonia, In Gaza

-Syria Dispatch: Most Syrians Support Assad, Reject Phony Foreign ‘Revolution’, Mar 7, 2016, SOTT.net (in Spanish; in Turkish; republished at: Off Guardian, Dissident VoiceStrategic Culture, Global Research, In Gaza) (cited in: “Western Reporter in Syria Finds U.S.-Backed Fighters Are Jihadists”, Washington’s Blog; “Contrary to West’s Humpty-Dumpty Allusion Syria is ‘Coming Together Again’”, Sputnik News)

-Western media ignoring reality on the ground in Syria: terrorism and anti-Syria sanctions which help terrorists, Mar 3, 2016, Russia Today, (republished at: SOTT.netDissident Voice, 21st Century Wire, Global Research, The Vineyard Saker In Oceania, In Gaza)

-Where is the West’s compassion & condemnation following terror attacks in Middle East?, Jan 30, 2016, Russia Today ( Global Research, 21st Century Wire, Sott.net, In Gaza)

Ex-Reuters freelancer, published in Mail and Telegraph, pictured with “Hell cannon”

Robert Stuart writes:

Fabrication in BBC Panorama 'Saving Syria’s Children'

Update 18 May 2016: following the publication of this post, all of the images below from Amer Alfaj‘s and Iessa Obied‘s Facebook accounts have been removed/hidden. Obied has also removed further images featuring weaponry which are included in this submission to the Charity Commission.


An image has emerged of a former Reuters freelance photographer and Syrian hospital employee participating in the firing of a “Hell cannon” mortar.

An image in a Facebook album posted by Amer Alfaj – whose photos from Bab al-Hawa on the Syria-Turkey border have been published in The Daily Mail and The Telegraph – shows him attending the preparation of an improvised mortar shortly before it fires a modified propane gas cylinder. Other of Alfaj’s Facebook photos, which date from 2013 when he was employed by Bab al-Hawa hospital [1], celebrate these munitions in repugnant manner.

Amer Alfaj (striped top and baseball cap) attends…

View original post 901 more words

Concerts at Palmyra represent liberation, resilience, revival

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May 8, 2016, American Herald Tribune

-Eva Bartlett

The momentous Syrian-Russian liberation of world heritage site Palmyra on March 27, 2016, came and went with zero congratulations from world leaders who are supposedly fighting terrorism. Palmyra is an area that was subject to ten months of Da’esh (ISIS) occupation, slaughters, and destruction.

When a delegation of foreign journalists went to Palmyra post-liberation, although scheduled to join the delegation, the four US media outlets are reported to have cancelled the night before. When a delegation of independent visitors went to Palmyra still not long after, the information in accounts they shared until now remain glaringly-absent from corporate newspapers and channels.

On May 5, the ancient site was newsworthy once again. Just over a month after its liberation by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) backed by the Russian Air Force, Palmyra’s Roman Amphitheatre was host to a concert of exceptional musicality and tremendous significance for both Syria and Russia.

Sputnik News reported:

“According to Syrian Culture Minister Issam Khalil, the concert of the Russian world-renowned Mariinsky Theatre Symphony Orchestra in the Syrian city of Palmyra is dedicated to the upcoming Victory Day.”

Sputnik cited Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, who addressed the audience and musicians by video link, saying of the concert:

“I consider it as an expression of gratitude, memory and hope. The gratitude to everyone, who fights against terrorism without sparing their own lives. The memory of all the victims of terror regardless of the place and time when crimes against humanity have been committed.”

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An introduction by acclaimed conductor Valery Gergiev, included:

“The music you will hear today, you hear our pain and our memory. But there’s also great hope in this music.  It’s very difficult to speak about emotions we feel, we musicians. We protest against barbarians who destroyed wonderful monuments of world’s culture. We protest against the executions of people, here on this great, great stage. Our concert in Palmyra is our appeal for everyone to come to peace and unity, and all people in the world to unite and work against this evil, against the terrorism.”
CONTINUE READING

Terrorism in Syria: A VoltaireNet Listing of Terrorist Attacks 2016

Homes opposite the terrorist car bombing blast in al-Zahra'a, Homs © Eva Bartlett

Russia Today: Homes opposite the terrorist car bombing blast in al-Zahra’a, Homs (Dec 2015)      © Eva Bartlett

This Voltairenet article contains a very comprehensive list of terrorists’ attacks in Syria, from Dec 31, 2015 to April 1, 2016.

It begins with the poignant comment that: “The Western Press does not have anything to say about terrorism in Syria.”

[This is something I wrote about earlier,after visiting Bourj al-Barajneh in Beirut and al-Zahra’a in Homs, where both have been victims of western-backed terrorists’ attacks:

Where is the West’s compassion & condemnation following terror attacks in Middle East?” Jan 30, 2016, Russia Today]

*Note: If the listing was up to date, the recent increased terrorists’ bombings of Aleppo would be included. See:

Aleppo Reverend’s Plea to the World To Stop Terrorists’ Attacks, Support Syrian Army [ENGLISH]

Hospitals Bombed: Aleppo Burning Under “moderate” terrorists’ Bombs

Aleppo Doctor Attacks Western Media for Bias, Censorship and Lies

Related:

US-Backed Terrorism in Syria: A First-Hand Account of the Use of Mortars Against Civilians

University Hospital, Damascus: Meeting Victims of Western-backed Mortar and Rocket Terrorism [photos]

VOLTAIRE NETWORK, May 5, 2016:

“The Western Press does not have anything to say about terrorism in Syria. These acts are perpetrated by groups of foreign combatants, supported by a few Syrian collaborators, and armed and funded by Germany, Saudi Arabia, Bulgaria, the United States, France, Israël, Qatar, the United Kingdom and Turkey. Here is a list of the terrorist attacks of which Syrian civilians have been victims since the start of the year.

The cessation of hostilities came into force on the 27th February 2016 at midnight (Damascus time).

However, the civilian populations continued to be widely attacked by groups described as the «moderate opposition» who were invited to participate in the «inter-Syrian» negotiations in Geneva, and also by the jihadists of Al-Qaïda and Daesh.

List of the terrorist opérations from the 1st January to the 1st April 2016

31 December 2015 and 1 January 2016
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