As I mentioned at the beginning of this clip, when in Syria as a journalist it usually takes 3 or so days to acquire the necessary permissions to go to areas outside Damascus (or rather, areas outside of Damascus where there is a risk due to presence of terrorists, terrorists bombings, or their landmines).
During this time, instead of loitering I try to interview average Syrian civilians, sometimes artisans, and otherwise love walking alone in the meandering back lanes, absorbing the atmosphere–whether daytime or evening.
People ask me about safety: I feel completely safe walking alone in these lanes. In contrast from my first visit in 2014 to the liberation of eastern Ghouta in 2018, I did not feel safe, nor did Syrian civilians, because at any moment a terrorist-fired mortar might strike, as they did incessantly over the years. CONTINUE READING
Throughout the evening, I walked around Damascus neighbourhoods, watching Syrians celebrate and talking with people, some of which I caught on camera.
This is a compilation of scenes from New Year’s Eve in Syria, where the pulse of life was stronger than I’ve ever seen over the years.
May 2019 bring full peace back to this beautiful country and its wonderful people.
Damascus Late 2018 Festive Atmosphere Without Terrorists’ Bombings
Some clips from al-Qassaa, Damascus, and Dweila, just before New Year’s Eve. Notice at the end, the photos of martyrs who died defending Syria. The martyrs are always present, around Syria. May their souls rest in peace and their loved ones be consoled by their heroism.
Mortars Which Terrorized Damascus Residents Fall No More
Reflecting on the terrorism Syrians faced for years, until the liberation of eastern Ghouta earlier this year, and how that liberation enabled Syrians to walk freely and celebrate without fear of being killed or maimed by terrorists’ mortars. As I noted on Twitter, in Dec 2015 I was in Syria. Syrians braved the streets in spite of risk terrorist mortars killing them. According to Dr Zaher Hajo, head of forensics, as of early 2018, terrorists had already killed over 10,000 civilians in Damascus alone (later # higher). CONTINUE READING
Back home two nights ago after a series of flights and bus rides. Before I got on the last bus (on which I kept falling asleep as it was 4 am in Lebanon/Syria and my internal clock is still tuned into that time), an employee of the bus company asked if I was ‘that reporter who goes to Syria’, and when I replied with my name, he made a gesture of respect (hand on head) and thanked me. Turns out he is a Palestinian from Nazareth originally, living in Canada, and follows my efforts for Palestine and Syria, and had been trying to get in touch with me somehow.
I’ve commented before and will say it again: it’s encounters like these that make efforts worthwhile, and I’ve happily had many such encounters over the years, including two days ago while in Beirut airport. CONTINUE READING
Nikki Haley, the hypocritical US Ambassador to the UN, mistakenly thinks she can dictate – from New York City, far from the terrorists which her country supports – that the Syrian army cannot fight and eradicate al-Qaeda in Idlib.
Her, and other American figures’ words, come with faked concern over the lives of Syrian civilians.
This is particularly ironic given that the US-led coalition, illegally in Syria, destroyed the Syrian city of Raqqa and killed untold numbers of civilians along the way, in their fake fight against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) – a pretext which has only time and again strengthened IS in Syria. Raqqa remains uninhabitable, and even today corpses are still being unearthed.
Haley and the Western corporate media have been bleating in chorus about Idlib and the civilians there, deliberately ignoring the presence of Al-Qaeda and affiliated terrorists occupying the governorate and surrounding areas in Aleppo and Hama governorates.
They ignore, too, the reality of life in areas which were once occupied by these terrorists: the torture, imprisonment, maiming, assassination, and starvation endured by the civilian population at the hands of these extremists and paid mercenaries. CONTINUE READING
A Maaloula fire spinner during the annual September Festival of the Holy Cross in Maaloula, Syria. Eva Bartlett | In Gaza
Eva Bartlett attends the Damascus International Trade fair and the annual Maaloula Festival of the Cross to see how Syrians in areas liberated from jihadi rule are defiantly celebrating their new found freedoms.
DAMASCUS and MAALOULA, SYRIA — (Report) In April 2018 I returned to Syria, visiting recently-liberated areas in eastern Ghouta and also travelling to the southern village of Hadar — which at the time was under continual bombardment by terrorists just to the south, with the assistance of Israel and its observation towers over the region.
My focus last April and May was highlighting this media-neglected issue, but also going to the site of the concocted and yet-unproven allegations of a chemical weapons attack. Indeed, as I wrote, no one at the hospital in question, nor the people of Douma I spoke with on the street, believed a chemical attack had occurred. Instead, they were more concerned with detailing the horrors and starvation they had lived under the rule of Jaysh al-Islam and other terrorist factions.
So, the focus of my last visit to Syria, which has been warred upon for the last seven years, was in highlighting the crimes of the terrorist factions against civilians, but also the crimes of the Western and regional nations promoting war propaganda and baseless accusations against Syria and its allies.
In early September, I returned to Syria for more uplifting reasons: to attend two important annual events that in recent years were interrupted due to terrorism: The annual Damascus International Trade Fair and Maaloula’s annual Holy Cross Festival. CONTINUE READING
In studio in Damascus yesterday, discussing the tragic attack on Mhardeh on September 7, an attack with at least 9 Grad missiles, according to the local defense forces (NDF), 6 of which contained cluster sub munitions.
11 killed, over 20 injured, including critically. I interviewed Shadi Yousef Shehda, a father whose three young children were murdered, along with his wife and mother. His pain was beyond heartbreaking, while speaking to me and showing his children’s clothing and toys. POST CONTINUES