Archive for January, 2012

Our Children in Syria
WRITTEN BY Asmae Dachan, translated by Mary Rizzo

Syrian children carry the photo of Hamza Al Khatib, before and after his torture and death

Every parent would like to buy their own children toys so that they can play, books so that they can get an education, clothes and shoes to wear, food and drink for their nourishment. They would like to smile while they get out of bed during the night to check on their children as they sleep in their room, tucking them in well under their covers; wake them up in the morning, help them get ready, bring them to school, kiss them goodbye and then embrace them again when they return from work, sit beside them on the sofa, listen to them tell about their day, watch their eyes light up when they are excited, look through their notebooks with them to see what they are learning, hugging them tightly, watch a film with them…

These are scenes from daily life: you may be asking yourself why I have used a conditional mode for this text. Because in Syria, for 11 months, none of these things exist any longer. In Syria, it has been exactly the love of freedom of a group of children from the city of Dar’à who wrote on a wall of their school “The people want the fall of the regime” to cause the repression and wicked violence of the bloody regime, which has been in power for over 40 years. In Syria, for 11 months, unarmed civilians are suffering unspeakable violence, they are under the guns of snipers and their homes shelled by armoured tanks. To this day, there are over 7,000 dead, among them, 400 children! Children who have been torn away from life, from the love of their families, their relatives, their friends. Children who have been deprived of the right to play, dream, grow.

More than 400 flowers cut by the criminal hands of the dictator Assad and his militia. More than 400 little voices who filled the lives and homes of their mothers and fathers, the classes of their schools, the streets of their towns, the gardens and playgrounds and now have been silenced forever. More than 400 innocent victims full of love and curious to discover life, who today sleep eternally. More than 400 tiny souls who will always remain in the hearts and the memories of those who loved them, including the other children with whom they shared the days in school or the afternoons of play. 400 times “goodbye” to these pure angels.

Their stories burn in our souls as if we are being branded. Our children in Syria know what it means to be tortured, they know what it means to die on account of an infection, from a bullet that penetrates their bodies, from a grenade launched against the homes they live in. Our children in Syria have learned what it means to spend days without eating and drinking, they know what it means to die from the cold, since the regime with determination cut the electricity and the gas, and they prohibited the inhabited centres in the zones of the protests from being supplied with these basic necessities. In Syria our children know what it means to see their own mother or father die before their eyes, they know what it means to look fear in the eyes…

Today in Syria parents are forced to buy shrouds for their children, and when it is not possible, they give them the final farewell wrapping them in their own blankets.

What kind of humanity can accept all of this?

In Syria our children die twice: The first time at the hands of the regime, the second time on account of the world’s indifference!

Do not be accomplices in this slaughter of innocents!
The Martyrdom of Syrian Children WITH VIDEO

WRITTEN BY SHADY HAMADI, translated by Mary Rizzo

victims of a massacre, women and children included

The week that has just ended has been the bloodiest since the start of the Syrian uprising. At least 66 killed yesterday alone, as reported by activists in Syria. The regime of Damascus has started a violent offensive against the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and the protesters: the deaths come from each one of these groups. The Syrian Foreign Minister Mohammed Ibrahim al Chaar has declared, by means of the official SANA news agency that, “the regime is determined to re-establish order and security and to clean the territory of its criminals.”

In the suburbs of Saqba and Zabadani, which are now under the control of the FSA, there are equally heavy attacks from the regime underway, which aim at regaining control, not only of these two zones, but of the entire band of suburbs surrounding the capital. The Arab League, due to the escalation of the violence, has ended their observers mission. Nabil al Arabi, secretary of the Arab League, has flown to New York in order to United Nations’ support for a plan of peaceful transition of power.

What is now in Syria becoming a true war of liberation encloses one tragedy in another: it is that of the Syrian children who have become involuntary protagonists in a revolution that is robbing their innocence from them. More than 400 children have died from violence since the beginning of the protests.

Hamza al-Khatib, born in October 1997 in Jiza, in the Daraa province, was arrested on 29 April in a checkpoint, while he was going to Daraa with other persons to bring aid to the citizens under siege by the Syrian regular militia. The body of the child was brought to his family completely mutilated, his penis was cut off, and bearing many other signs of torture, he had gunshot wounds on his limbs and chest.

Tamer Mohammad al-Sharey, 15 years old, he was arrested together with Hamza al-Khatib and like him, he died under torture; his teeth were pulled out of his mouth while he was alive, they gouged out his eyes and shot him in the legs, stomach and face. Signs of cigarette burns were found on every part of his body.

And several days ago was the terrible massacre of children in the village of Hasal al Wuard. Eleven components of the Bahado family were executed by the regime’s “security forces” and among the victims, five children. How long will mankind be attracted to evil, How long will be keep accepting that all of this happens?


100 Syrian civilian vicitims in 2 days of attacks against them


“You may as well be born an animal rather than a Syrian. You would have been given more protection.”

I have been wondering to myself and at times aloud, “What the hell has happened to the empathy and humanity of the activism movement? When did they start deciding whose blood was expendable? Where did their compassion, empathy and sense of justice go?”

There are a few qualities that an activist should have as a mandatory part of their baggage.  Not all of them are required to have a solution to the problems that are afflicting the victims or the weak in the causes that they are advocating. Nor are they even required to dedicate a lot of time or money to the cause. One can be an activist nowadays locally or even if they are disabled and unable to leave their homes, as they can express their views, share information and engage in solidarity by means of internet. The qualities however that should be part of every activists’ tool kit include empathy, a bit of courage and a strong desire for “good” to overpower and defeat “bad”.  And, that this vital and obligatory baggage has become so selective, has got to be the most fatal blow to the activism universe. It makes it reek of hypocrisy and plays directly into the hands of the oppressors.

Empathy is a social and emotional response to the conditions that other sentient beings are in. Since we all can agree that pain and suffering (including being a victim of abuse, starvation, deprivation) are negative things, it is not difficult to feel bad, “as if” what is happening could be happening to us or to the people or animals we love. If we are able to unplug the empathy because we have an ideology that we buy into, accompanied by a kind of strange peer pressure, something has gone wrong very seriously. If we are selective in such a subject as human pain and our acceptance of it, we need a major time out to rethink what we are doing in activism. We should remember that empathy can be a tool towards change, we should put it to use and understand that suffering people (and to some extent animals) are aware of our involvement or our detachment, and they tap into the capacity of (especially) activists, to make the feelings of empathy manifest and bring about an end to the suffering, which is the primary and immediate goal.

By understanding, witnessing and realising the extreme suffering that some are subject to, an activist has the ability to concretely help to change the condition of pain and suffering through the recognition of the condition followed by acts that aim at intervening in favour of the victims. On the other hand, their indifference can empower the abuser and oppressor, who believes that there is justification for his violence.

There has been no lack of evidence for many many months coming from Syria that the situation in Syria is a humanitarian crisis of an extremely severe nature. To cite some statistics, much of them from international organs that are considered to be highly authoritative such as the UN, Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and others, in eleven months since the first protests against the regime in power took to the streets, there have been a confirmed 6000 civilians killed, by snipers, shelling, bombs and beatings, though other sources claim that the actual number is much higher, since discovery of mass graves and bodies of “disappeared” protesters is a constant occurrence. 70,000 persons have been arrested, most of them charged with nothing or charged with crimes that would not stand up in any normal court of law, including thought crimes and crimes of intention. There have been constant and documented abuses and torture, with corpses bearing the signs of brutality one can hardly imagine. The scenes are so horrible and devastating, in years and years of activism for human rights and especially Palestinian rights, I have never witnessed this level of depravity, this level of gore.

Last week, the town of Idlib had a most gruesome event: a group of people were victims of the explosion of a nail bomb, sending tiny projectiles into the flesh, damaging internal organs and causing internal bleeding until painful death comes. They were brought to the civil hospital for holding before their funerals, but 60 other bodies were discovered in the refrigerator cells, all of them bearing signs of gruesome torture. The hospital was occupied by the regime’s militia who also prohibited any wounded from receiving treatment. Hospitals were now simply for serving the regime’s fight to stay in power at all costs. What came to mind to an activist I know who had seen the still shots of the bodies face down in pools of their own blood was scenes of Sabra and Shatilla. But these are Syrians, and for some strange reason, most activists for Palestine are ignoring this. Are they wearing blinders or are they unable to empathise with the Syrians?

That there are over 20,000 refugees who have sought refuge in Turkey in a tent facility is another number that should cause any activists to tremble. We know the fate of refugees, the way they often never come back and mostly, the dire living conditions they are faced with. An activist should be concerned about this problem. How many Syrians have fled to Lebanon or even farther? No one knows the numbers because often these people continue to be threatened and hunted even in exile.

Why do the activists fail to understand the severity of the situation? Why do they denounce the protesters in the same exact terms used by the regime with mountains of evidence against it being a humane government? Why have they tweeted, blogged, shouted for weeks about pepper spray in the eyes of American demonstrators, yet the mortal assaults on civilians (including 300 children who have had a violent death at the hands of the regime, many of them subjected to arrest and death at the hands of their torturers) are all but ignored? Are Syrians children of a lesser God? Are they less worthy of protection and concern? Is it possible that American university students who later in the day can go to their dorms and realise their lives are not in danger get more sympathy and empathy from activists than innocent Arab children who have lost their lives under the cruelty of a repressive militia?

Some will say, “Why do you say that it’s worse if someone is killing their own people?” as a kind of excuse to then talk about a different geographical place, a different situation. Others will say that the Assad regime is the last bastion against imperialism, which is the sole argument they seem to be able to muster. They are certain there is an imperialist plot behind all of this, something they were reluctant to say with the same protests in Tunisia, Egypt and to some extent, to the Palestinian Intifadas. Many of these people who are proclaiming it can’t be a sincere popular revolt or revolution live in affluent societies in Europe and North America, where they have the right to say what they want to without being arrested and yet, have never taken part in a revolution or revolt. Others will say that there should be no outside intervention, but they root for Russia, Lebanon and Iran continuing to arm the regime and give it economic solvency for as long as possible. Others will say that the Free Syria Army is an imperialist militia (???!!!) and that it is fomenting war and is not a true resistance militia. Yet others are claiming that both sides are to blame, putting them on equal footing, something they would never dare do if this were Palestine. How can an armed power that controls government, the economy, can turn off water, electricity and gas at a whim, arbitrarily arrest people in the thousands, close down hospitals and invade cities with tanks, bombarding people as they are within their own homes and placing snipers on the roof should they dare seek to escape be equated with the civilians?

A Syrian friend of mine said to me a few months ago, “If only we were animals, then I think that more people would feel for us and care.” After a few weeks, he noticed even the total abandonment of the Activists for Palestine, who are touting the Assad line without a practical reason to do so unless they are inhumane or blind. He said, “We should just tell everyone we are Palestinian, perhaps they will then be upset about how we are dying”. I would take it further: several years ago Vittorio Arrigoni wrote a piece that was very poignant. I ask especially the activists for Palestine to read it and reflect upon it.

“Take some kittens, tiny little cats and put them in a box” said the surgeon at Gaza’s main hospital called Al Shifa, while the nurse placed a couple of big boxes on the floor right in front of us, covered in splashes of blood. “Seal up the box, then with all your might jump on top of it until you hear the little bones crunching, and the last suffocated “meow”. I’m astounded and I stare at the boxes. The doctor goes on “Now try to imagine what would happen straight after the broadcast of a scene like that, the justifiably indignant reaction of the world-wide public, the denunciations of the organisations protecting animals…” The doctor goes on with his account and I can’t take my eyes off those boxes placed by my feet. “Israel has enclosed hundreds of civilians in a school as though in a box, dozens of children, and then it squeezed it with all its might using its bombs. And what were the reactions of the world? Almost nothing. You may as well be born an animal rather than Palestinian. We would have been given more protection.” At this point the doctor leans towards the box and takes the lid off in front of my eyes. Inside there are mutilated limbs, arms, legs, from the knee down or whole femurs, amputated from the people injured inside the Al Fakhura United Nations school in Jabalia. Up until now there are more than 50 victims. I pretended I had an urgent telephone call, I told Jamal I had to go, but actually I ran for the toilet, I bent over and threw up.

Right now those victims are Syrians. At this moment, the average of 40 victims each day, at times close to 100, belongs to Syria.  “You may as well be born an animal rather than a Syrian. You would have been given more protection.”

WRITTEN BY SHADY HAMADI, translated by Mary Rizzo

Fadwa Soliman

Since the start of the Syrian revolution, approximately eleven months ago, women have played a role that is equal to that of men. Young Syrian women have been leading the protest, they are at the head of human rights organisations and they are leading protagonists in the political opposition. But who are these women?

Fadwa Soliman was one of Syria’s most famous actresses. When the revolution began, she decided to actively participate. Her parents, upon discovering their daughter’s choice, disowned her, because they were dedicated supporters of the president Assad as well as belonging to the same religious group as the Assad family, the Alawite sect. Being a public figure whose face was known to all, Fadwa, wanted by the police, decided to cut her long black hair so as to render herself less recognisable. Her activity, in this moment, is concentrated especially in leading protests and sending video messages by means of You Tube. She has been living in hiding for months, and every day she is forced to change where she is living so as to avoid capture.

Razan Zaithouni, born in 1977, she manages a network of local coordination committees for human rights in Syria. She is wanted because she is accused by the Syrian regime of being a foreign spy. Razan Zaithouni was awarded the Sakharov Prize in October and also in 2011 won the Anna Politkovskaya Award. Her husband is currently detained in the Syrian prisons.

Bassma Kodmani, spokesperson of the Syrian National Council – the principle opposition group to the regime – in 1968 left Syria with his parents who abandoned their country due to political problems, transferring themselves to Paris. Prior to the start of the revolution, she had published various books in France and has managed, for the Ford Foundation, the programme of government and cooperation in the Middle East. She is the most influential Syrian woman on a political level at this moment, and she is the second in command of the Syrian National Council.

Suhair Atassi, human rights activits, member of the Atassi family, which has a lengthy political history behind it, manages the Jamal Atassi Forum. In this moment the form is only online because it was outlawed by the government. She was arrested at the start of the protests and released several months later. Her identity card has been taken by the security forces so as to prevent her from escaping. She lives under the constant threat of being arrested again.

The list of the women who are changing Syria is long. Christian, Muslim, Alawite women, as well as women from all the other religions are participating, collaborating actively in this spring that is late in blooming. I believe that the saying “behind every great man there is a great woman” isn’t sufficient for the Syrian situation, because men and women are walking side by side, hand in hand.



Global day of rage

21 January 2012 Global Day of Rage in Solidarity with the Syrian People


  • Because the Syrian people have been undergoing the atrocities of the dictatorship of the Assad dynasty for more than 40 years. First, the father Hafez, then his son Bashar, with the complicity of the entire family and the mercenaries of the Ba’ath party.
  • Because the Syrian people, for 11 months, have taken to the streets to demand the end of this regime, to demand the respect of their human rights, invoking freedom and democracy and for this reason, and no other, are killed by an inhumane repression.
  • Because in Syria innocents are dying, children are killed in cold blood, as well as adolescents, women and men of every age, unarmed and defenceless civilians. The centres of their towns and villages are bombarded and shelled and their places of worship are broken into. Universities are raided in order to arrest and kill those who oppose the regime.
  • Because in Syria there is a strike to demand the protection and safeguarding of human dignity, paid for in blood.
  • Because in Syria thousands of people are imprisoned for thought crimes: even children!!
  • Because in Syria women are abducted and raped, including minors, in order to dissuade people from the desire to demand their freedom.
  • Because in Syria funeral processions are shot upon and the bodies of the martyrs are subject to every kind of vilification.
  • Because in Syria the regime controls information, instruction, economy and every aspect of the people’s lives.
  • Because there are entire cities in Syria that are subject to constant shelling by armoured tanks of the regime, with snipers positioned on the roofs and in the streets who are there to kill passers-by and protesters.
  • Because the world is standing by and only watching, from the UN to the Arab League, no one has moved a finger decisively and effectively to make this massacre cease!!
  • Because 6,700 martyrs, many of them children, thousands of wounded and mutilated people, prisoners and desaparicidos ask that this massacre ENDS and that justice be done!!

These are only some of the reasons for which, the 21st of January 2012, the World Day of Rage in Solidarity with the Syrian People has been declared. We can no longer stand by in silence! Silence and indifference are accomplices in this massacre! We make an appeal to the consciences of everyone, citizens, administrations, workers, political and religious leaders, academics and students, for mobilisation towards the respect of human rights in Syria.


Giornata Mondiale della Collera per la Siria

21 gennaio 2012 Giornata Mondiale della collera in Solidarietà con il Popolo Siriano
Sabato, 21 gennaio 2012 sarà celebrata dalle donne e dagli uomini liberi di tutto il mondo la Giornata Mondiale della collera in Solidarietà con il Popolo… Siriano.

• Perché il popolo siriano subisce le atrocità della dittatura della dinastia Assad da oltre 40 anni. Prima il padre, Hafez, poi il figlio, Bashar, con la complicità di tutta la famiglia e dei mercenari del partito Ba’ath.

• Perché il popolo siriano da 11 mesi è sceso in piazza per chiedere la fine di questo regime, per domandare il rispetto dei diritti umani, invocando libertà e democrazia e per questo viene colpito a morte da una repressione disumana.

• Perché in Siria muoiono innocenti, vengono uccisi a sangue freddo bambini, adolescenti, donne e uomini di ogni età, civili inermi e disarmati. Si bombardano i centri abitati e si fa irruzione dei luoghi di culto e nelle università per arrestare e uccidere chi si oppone al regime.

• Perché in Siria chi sciopera per chiedere la tutela e la salvaguardia della propria dignità paga con il sangue.

• Perché in Siria migliaia di persone si trovano in carcere per reati d’opinione: anche bambini!

• Perché in Siria vengono sequestrate e stuprate le donne, comprese le minorenni, per dissuadere il popolo dalla volontà di chiedere libertà.

• Perché in Siria sparano sui cortei funebri e vilipendiano i corpi dei martiri.

• Perché in Siria il regime controlla l’informazione, l’istruzione, l’economia e tutti gli aspetti della vita del popolo.

• Perché ci sono intere città in Siria che vengono bombardare dai carro armati del regime, con i cecchini appostati sui tetti e nelle strade per uccidere i passanti e i dimostranti.

• Perché il mondo sta a guardare, dall’ONU alla Lega Araba, nessuno si è mosso con decisione ed efficacia per dire stop al massacro!

• Perché 6700 martiri, tra cui molti bambini, migliaia di feriti e mutilati, di prigionieri e di desaparecidos chiedono che venga fermato il massacro e sia fatta giustizia!!!

Queste sono alcune della cause per cui il 21 gennaio 2012 è stata proclamata la Giornata Mondiale della collera in solidarietà con il Popolo Siriano! Non possiamo più sopportare in silenzio! Il silenzio e l’indifferenza sono complici di questo massacro! Ci appelliamo alle coscienze di tutti, cittadini, amministrazioni, lavoratori, esponenti politici e religiosi, accademici e studenti, per una mobilitazione generale per il rispetto dei diritti umani in Siria.


Ho dovuto sacrificare la nazione siriana per salvare il regime

Written by ASMAE DACHAN, translated by Mary Rizzo

It’s been ten long months since the start of the Syrian revolution against the regime of Bashar Assad. Ten months that have cost the lives of more than 6,000 martyrs, with thousands of people wounded, thousands tortured and thousands who have disappeared. There have been people forced from their homes and have become refugees. And, there is constant abuse against women and ferocious brutality against children. The regime in Syria has lasted for more than 40 years, since the father of the current dictator-president, Hafez Assad, rose to power by a coup d’état. Upon his death, power passed “by inheritance” to Bashar, and this dynasty has brought about an ever-growing discontent, while the regime continues to impose a curfew, which for over 40 years has served to impede and prohibit any kind of demonstration or right for the people to assemble.

Watching the images of the protests on TV, a group of children from the city of Dar’à wrote on a wall of their school, “The people want the fall of the regime”. The children were identified and abducted, then they were tortured and their bodies thrown in the streets. Their parents went into the squares to protest, in a pacific manner, but as a response to this, the regime opened fire on them and they are remembered as the first fallen martyrs.

Thus began the Syrian revolution: with slogans, chants, songs, protests, the voices of young Syrians who came from every part of the country: in particular, the people of Homs, Hama and Dar’à. The regime deployed its army in the cities, it started a policy of extreme and violent repression, using the instruments of abductions, rape and terrible torture. In many parts of these cities, there has been no supply of gas or electricity for months, they are running out of medicine and even food, including milk for their children. There are thousands of refugees, both internal and those who seek refuge abroad.

But nothing can bend the will of the people, not even the lining up of the so-called Shabbiha, that is, the infiltrate squadrons, those shadow-like figures who clandestinely join in the protests to stab the youth, even the children, then to indicate them to the secret services, who will arrest them and kill them. But the voice of the revolution cannot be silenced. Not even the deployment of the army, from which each day dozens of soldiers who no longer want to shoot into the crowds are defecting from, giving life to the Free Syrian Army. To distinguish the spontaneous protests of the Syrian revolution from those ordered by the regime to its supporters, the new Syria has chosen a new flag. The old flag with the colours black, white and red has been abandoned in order to adopt the new won, green, white and black, with 3 red stars.

One of the particularities of this revolution is its horizontal character: everything is organised, spread and transmitted by means of the network, with messages, videos, slogans and documents transmitted from one part of the world to another. In this way, for the first time, Syrians of the diaspora are involved, that is, those Syrians who had emigrated, some of whom had never been allowed to return home due to the regime. So has been born the first free and actual Syrian opposition, the SNC Syrian National Council, which is now working with international diplomacy in order to bring the country towards freedom. At this moment, the international community is doing very little, the Arab League is worse. The mission of the observers has proved itself to be useless.

The Syrian people are alone, but they are not surrendering. We will continue until Freedom comes!   Asmae Dachan

I am against the regime

I am against the regime because it is helped by wicked people who know it will protect their interests.

I am against the regime because it invokes democracy, but it unleashes its own army against every individual who asks for freedom. I am against the regime because I am tired of recognising the individual errors that have caused thousands of martyrs. I am against the regime because it says it is fighting against armed gangs, yet its death squadrons (Shabbiha) brazenly bring and use weapons against protesters. I am against the regime because it invokes reforms, but at the same time raises the rank and degree of its corrupt affiliates, while protecting those who are responsible for the massacre of so many innocents. I am against the regime because it talks about conspiracies against it, as if it was were itself doing its duty towards its own people.

Hani Dalati from Aleppo

La rivolta siriana contro il regime di assad

Ho dovuto sacrificare la nazione siriana per salvare il regime

Sono ormai dieci lunghi mesi che è iniziata la rivolta siriana contro il regime di bashar assad. Dieci mesi che sono costati la vita ad oltre 6000 martiri, con migliaia di feriti, di persone torturate, scomparse, con sfollati e profughi, abusi su donne e ferocia contro i bambini. Il regime in Siria dura da oltre 40 anni, da quando il padre del dittatore-presidente attuale, hafez assad, salì al potere con un colpo di stato. Alla sua morte il potere è passato “per eredità” a bashar, con un malcontento popolare sempre più diffuso, mentre continua a perdurare il regime di coprifuoco, che di fatto impedisce ogni manifestazione o riunione popolare, da oltre 40 anni.

Guardando in tv le immagini delle manifestazioni, un gruppo di bambini della città di Dar’à ha scritto sul muro della scuola “Il popolo vuole la caduta del regime”. Individuati e sequestrati, i bambini sono stati torturati e poi gettati in strada. I loro genitori sono scesi in piazza a manifestare, in modo pacifico, ma per tutta risposta il regime ha aperto su di loro il fuoco e sono caduti i primi martiri.  Ha preso così il via la rivolta siriana: cori, canti, manifestazioni, le voci dei giovani siriani si sono rincorse da una parte all’altra del paese: in particolare, a Homs, Hama, Dar’à. Il regime ha schierato l’esercito nelle città, ha avviato politiche di repressione feroce, mettendo in atto sequestri, stupri e torture terribili. In molti quartieri manca la corrente e il gas da mesi, mancano i medicinali e persino i viveri, il latte per bambini. Si contano migliaia di sfollati e profughi.

Ma nulla può piegare la volontà del popolo, nemmeno lo schieramento dei cosiddetti shabbiha, cioè gli infiltrati, i fantasmi che si intrufolano nelle manifestazioni per accoltellare i giovani, persino i bambini, segnalarli ai servizi segreti, farli arrestare e uccider, ma la voce della rivolta è inarrestabile. Nemmeno lo schieramento dell’esercito, da cui ogni giorno si defezionano decine di soldati che non vogliono sparare sulla folla e hanno dato vita al Free Syrian Army. Per distinguere le manifestazioni spontanee della rivolta siriana da quelle ordinate dal regime ai suoi sostenitori, la nuova Siria ha scelto una nuova bandiera. È stata lasciata quella nera bianca e rossa per adottare quella nuova, verde, bianca e nera, con 3 stelle rosse.

Una delle peculiarità e di questa rivolta è il suo carattere orizzontale: tutto si organizza, si diffonde e si trasmette tramite la rete, con messaggi, video, slogan e documenti trasmessi da una parte all’altra del mondo. Vengono così coinvolti, per la prima volta, anche i siriani della diaspora, i siriani cioè, emigrati all’estero, alcuni dei quali non hanno mai potuto fare ritorno a casa per via del regime. Nasce così la prima opposizione siriana libera e reale, il SNC Syrian National Council, che sta ora lavorando con le diplomazie internazionali per portare il Paese verso la libertà. Ad oggi la comunità internazionale tentenna, la Lega Araba peggio. La missione degli osservatori non è servita a nulla.

Il popolo siriano è solo, ma non si arrende. Andremo avanti fino alla Libertà!

Asmae Dachan

Sono contro il regime perché si fa aiutare da persone infami per tutelare i suoi interessi.

Sono contro il regime perché invoca la democrazia, ma scatena il suo esercito contro ogni individuo che chiede libertà. Sono contro il regime perché mi sono stancato di riconoscere gli errori individuali che hanno causato migliaia di martiri. Sono contro il regime perché dice di lottare contro bande armate e i suoi squadroni della morte (Shabbiha) portano e usano spudoratamente le armi contro i manifestanti. Sono contro il regime perché invoca riforme e allo stesso tempo eleva di grado i suoi affiliati corrotti e protegge i responsabili del massacro di tanti innocenti. Sono contro il regime perché parla di complotto ai suoi danni, come se intanto stesse facendo il suo dovere nei confronti del suo popolo.

Hani Dalati, Aleppo

Declaration of Dignity
by لجان التنسيق المحلية في سوريا on Monday, 19 December 2011 at 18:47

Symbol of the Syrian Struggle for Dignity

The humiliation our Syrian nation faces is incomparable to any other of its kind. Women and men, fathers and mothers, and sons and daughters of all ethnic and religious backgrounds have faced enormous abuses. Our nation’s people have been forced, through decades of dictatorship and tyranny, to accept regular offenses as part of their daily lives. The disregard and contempt for human dignity have resulted in barbarous acts that have hurt both the national unity and the human conscience throughout the country.

Syrians have struggled bravely for their freedom and their dignity, and have paid a very high price during their struggle: the lives of many, as well as dignity of many others.

From our participation in this glorious uprising, the uprising of dignity, and from our perspective, we hereby announce that:

·         Syrians are precious and their lives are valuable.

·         No public authority has the right to deprive any Syrian of life, or expose any Syrian to risk without legitimate authority.

·         No one is allowed to torture Syrians, or harm their physical or psychological integrity.

·         Syrian citizens are their own masters, and no government authority may arrest Syrians or deny them their right to self-determination, unless there is a legal reason issued by a fair, impartial, independent, and legitimate judicial authority.

·         No one, whether a public figure or private individual, has the right to curse or ridicule the Syrian citizen, or abuse him or her with obscenities, nor to treat him or her harshly or brutally, in a manner that affects his or dignity or self-respect.

·         Every Syrian citizen shall be secure in his or her home, property, and life. No public authority shall interfere with these rights unless they have a legal reason to do so, as determined by a fair, impartial, independent, and legitimate judicial authority.

·         No public authority may stop any Syrian from enjoying the fruits of his or her labor; the Syrian worker will not be taken advantage of.

·         No public authority may undermine any Syrian’s religious belief, or lack thereof, nor force anyone to accept any belief that goes against his or her conscience.

·         All Syrian citizens are equal in dignity and honor.

·         The diverse religious and ethnic groups that make up the Syrian community are all equal in Syria in their dignity and honor. The state may not favor one group over another.

·         The commitment to people’s dignity serves as the basis for freedom, justice, and civil peace in the country.

·         Syria’s strength is measured by the dignity of its weakest citizens.

·         Syrians cannot and should not accept any dealings that would adversely impact their dignity or honor.

Local Coordination Committees in Syria 19-11-2011

Dichiarazione della Dignità 

by لجان التنسيق المحلية في سوريا

lunedì, 19 dicembre 2011

Comitato dei Coordinamenti locali in Siria

il simbolo per la lotta siriana per la libertà e la dignità

L’umiliazione che la nostra nazione, la Siria, deve affrontare, non può essere confrontata con nessun’ altra umiliazione. Donne e uomini, padri, madri, figli e figlie di ogni provenienza etnica e religiosa sono testimoni di abusi terrificanti. La gente della nostra nazione è stata costretto, attraverso decenni di dittatura e tirannia, ad accettare le offese costanti come se, semplicemente, facessero parte delle loro vita quotidiana. Il disdegno ed il disprezzo della dignità umana si è manifestato in atti barbarici che hanno ferito non solo l’unità nazionale, ma anche la coscienza umana in ogni parte del Paese.

I siriani hanno lottato con coraggio per la loro libertà e la loro dignità e hanno pagato un prezzo altissimo durante la loro lotta: le vite di molti ed anche la dignità di molti altri.

Dalla nostra partecipazione in questo intifada gloriosa, l’intifada della dignità e dalla nostra prospettiva, annunciamo che:

·          I siriani sono preziosi e le loro vite hanno grande valore.

·          Nessuna autorità pubblica ha il diritto di togliere la vita ai siriani, o di esporli a rischi senza l’autorità legittima di farlo.

·          Nessuno ha il diritto di torturare i siriani, o di recare loro dolore o danno nella loro integrità fisica o psicologica.

·          I cittadini siriani sono gli artefici del proprio destino e nessuna autorità governativa ha il diritto di arrestarli oppure di negare il loro diritto all’autodeterminazione, se non esiste un motivo legale che è stato emanato da una legittima autorità che è obiettiva, imparziale e indipendente.

·          Nessuno, neanche se è una figura pubblica o un individuo privato, ha il diritto di maledire o ridicolizzare un cittadino siriano, né abusare di lui o di lei con parole oscene, né di trattare lui o lei con durezza o brutalità, in una maniera che mina alla sua dignità o auto-stima.

·          Ogni cittadino siriano deve essere sicuro nella propria casa, come deve essere sicura la propria proprietà e la propria vita. Nessun autorità pubblica ha il diritto di interferire con questi diritti se non con un motivo legale di farlo, motivo determinato sempre da un legittima autorità che deve essere obiettiva, imparziale ed indipendente.

·          Nessuna autorità pubblica ha il diritto di proibire a qualsiasi siriano di godere dei frutti del proprio lavoro; i lavoratori siriani non devono essere soggetti allo sfruttamento.

·          Nessuna  autorità pubblica ha il diritto di penalizzare o di punire alcun siriano per la sua fede religiosa, o per la mancanza di fede religiosa, né può costringere alcuna persona ad accettare qualsiasi credo che vada contro la propria coscienza.

·          Tutti i cittadini siriani sono uguali in dignità ed in onore.

·          I diversi gruppi religiosi ed etnici che compongono la comunità siriani sono tutti uguali in Siria nella loro dignità ed onore. Lo Stato non deve favorire un gruppo a discapito degli altri.

·          L’impegno verso la dignità delle persone serve come  base per la libertà, la giustizia e la pace civile nel Paese.

·          La forza della Siria è misurata a secondo la dignità dei suoi cittadini più deboli.

·          I siriani non possono e non dovrebbero accettare alcun patto che possa avere un impatto negativo sulla loro dignità.

scritto da Maysaloon, tradotto da Mary Rizzo
orignale Berating the Arab Resistance Crowd  

to many pundits, it's all about Western Imperialism

Dovrebbe essere condotta un’indagine seria sul comportamento di alcuni individui riguardo alla rivoluzione siriana. Nonostante il fatto che siano in prima linea per la causa palestinese, e siano stati tra i primi a denunciare ogni volta che un’ingiustizia veniva compiuta, hanno dimostrato, a dispetto dei loro migliori tentativi di mantenere un’apparenza di imparzialità, di essere tra i peggiori sostenitori del regime siriano.

Che esista una cospirazione contro il regime siriano oppure no, voi state sostenendo l’uccisione di siriani innocenti quando non solo vi rifiutate di condannare il regime siriano, ma abbandonate il popolo siriano ai capricci e alle stragi dei servizi di sicurezza di Assad con il proposito d’essere “imparziali” rispetto a entrambi le parti. Ma esiste una sola parte da sostenere, siccome esiste una parte che fa stragi di gente e l’altra che subisce le stragi.

Io trovo una vera assenza di coerenza tra quelli i quali, per esempio, pretendono i più alti livelli di integrità giornalistica quando si parla della Siria, ma al tempo stesso si sentono in dovere di disseminare YouTube di video del Bahrain oppure delle proteste di Qatif in Arabia Saudita dell’Est, senza pretendere dagli attivisti di quei luoghi lo stesso livello di esame minuzioso. Inoltre, gli errori commessi dagli attivisti siriani non possono essere perdonati, ma gli errori degli attivisti in Paesi governati dai regimi “venduti”, sono ignorati ed a volte addirittura giustificati. La storia delle incubatrici per neonati ora viene citata come un esempio imperdonabile per cui non si deve fare affidamento sugli attivisti siriani, ma le migliaia di video che documentano la brutalità di Assad sono opportunamente ignorati. Se quegli stessi video fossero usciti invece dal Bahrain, dallo Yemen oppure dall’ Egitto, questi stessi attivisti “pro-resistenza” sarebbe sul piede di guerra.

Poi ci dicono che la rivoluzione siriana è guidata dalla Fratellanza Musulmana, e che sono schifosi, e non ci si deve fidare di loro; ma la Fratellanza Musulmana era attiva anche in Egitto, però la rivoluzione egiziana è posta sull’altare della santità con retweets sul Twitter, oppure con citazioni su Facebook, che sono coerentemente contro lo SCAF attualmente al potere, e completamente dalla parte delle manifestazioni – anche se i movimenti di protesta in Egitto sono una moltitudine di persone, compresi quelli dalla sinistra, laici, salafiti e membri della Fratellanza Musulmana. Però, il fatto che in Siria ci siano anche i salafiti che sono esplicitamente contro la repressione del regime significa che è una condanna de facto, che la rivoluzione siriana è stato dirottata, oppure che è guidato dai “Wahhabi Sauditi”. Questa gente non ha capito – oppure ignora – il punto che non esiste una rivoluzione nella storia che fosse portata avanti da una massa monolitica con una sola ideologia, e che non c’è mai stata una rivoluzione totalmente libera dall’interferenza straniera e dai progetti eversivi. Ma, per loro, la rivoluzione siriana deve essere uccisa prima ancora d’essere nata, e quando è già stata partorita, deve essere abbandonata e lasciata a morire perché non è il giusto tipo di rivoluzione e non è all’altezza dei loro ideali.

Alcuni scherniscono i canti della rivoluzione siriana, e fanno commenti molto sprezzanti riguarda alla mancanza di “valore” culturale e linguistico dei canti in confronto a quelli delle altre rivoluzioni – come se questo fosse una specie di concorso creativo (i canti siriani, infatti, sono ampiamente ammirati come alcuni dei più creativi e orecchiabili di tutti i canti nel mondo arabo). Quelle stesse persone poi mettono sullo stesso piano l’ opposizione siriana – politicamente frammentata e lungamente repressa – con i rappresentanti della rivoluzione siriana, e vogliono raddoppiare il peso del popolo siriano insistendo che la rivoluzione deve rimanere “pura” e che il popolo deve combattere non solo il regime, ma anche le figure politiche dell’opposizione, compresa la Fratellanza Musulmana. Io insisto che questo è crudele ed anche stupido. C’e gente che è costretta a confrontarsi con una brutalità schiacciante, mentre voi insegnate le finezze di principi rivoluzionari dall’altra parte del mondo o al di là del mare? E’ come dire ai manifestanti in Bahrain che, mentre un poliziotto ti sta spezzando la tua gamba, devi insistere nella denuncia contro Iran e l’Arabia Saudita, altrimenti la vostra rivoluzione non è abbastanza pura e non è degna del loro sostegno.

Ci sono molte parole che io potrei dire a persone del genere, ma non userò quel tipo di linguaggio. La rivoluzione siriana non ha bisogno di voi; il popolo siriano non ha bisogno di voi; e la causa palestinese che voi così dogmaticamente e passionatamente difendete – per qualsiasi motivo – certamente non ha bisogno di voi.

Posted by Maysaloonat 11:02 AM Tradotto in italiano da mary rizzo

Written by Lorenzo Trombetta for Sirialibano, translated by Mary Rizzo

Gilles Jacquier

A French journalist, Gilles Jacquier, reporter for France 2 (photo), was killed in Homs by an explosion in the Alawite neighbourhood of Akrama. He is the first Western journalist to lose his life in Syria since the beginning of the repression of the anti-government protests.

His life was not lost in Gaza, in Afghanistan, in Iraq, in Libya. He lost his life in Syria. One of his Dutch colleagues – Steven Wassenaar, a freelance journalist – was slightly injured in an eye (initially he was reported as being Belgian). Another seven Syrians – states the TV channel Duniya, close to the regime – were killed.

As a photographer for AFP, witness to the event, states, the journalists were part of a tour organised by the authorities in the third city of the nation and epicentre of the repression and the consequent revolt. They were going to follow a march of loyalists when the group was struck by shells. This fact stimulates some spontaneous questions.

1) Who has the possibility to use shells and mortar in Syria?

a) if they are deserters, to say it the way the conspiracy people do, the salafites-infiltrators-terrorists-zionists, then this is REALLY a piece of news. It means that a military escalation is underway. Up to this point, the deserters, and the civilians who have joined them, have shown that they are able to use automatic rifles and RPGs. At Jabal Zawiya (Idlib) they said that they were able to bring an anti-missile rocket launcher. But mortars up to this point, no one has any knowledge of that.

b) if it is not the deserters, then it must be the regime. Because the protesters at this point are still not equipped with anything of the sort.

2) If it was the deserters with brand new mortars – which came to them from the French-Turks-NATO-Israel, still bearing the plastic wrapping and tags – why aim them into a loyalist neighbourhood?

a) because, some will say, since they are really bad people, they can’t wait to exterminate their enemies, the Alawites who are victims of the conspiracy. By chance, in that moment, there were also Western journalists. But in the regime’s rhetoric, aren’t Western journalists in the service of the conspiracy? On the one hand, the agents of the conspiracy are described as being very shrewd, on the other – if it is true that they killed one of their accomplices by accident – the reporter – they show themselves to be simply bunglers.

3) If it was the regime, why shell a loyalist neighbourhood and risk killing – as had in fact happened – your own supporters and some foreign journalists?

a) to demonstrate, others will say, that Homs is dangerous and it is important to stay away from the city. Observers and accredited journalists have now been warned. To then attribute the attack to terrorists who impede free access to information operators, freely welcomed by the authorities of Damascus.

4) Why are the agents of the conspiracy attacking Syrian civilians (Damascus, 6 January) when they should have been trying to collect internal consensus? And why do they attack Arab observers (11 of them have been injured in Lattakia and Homs on 9 January), when they should have tried to convince them of the worthiness of their cause? And why attack Western journalists, when they should instead have them as allies to serve for receiving international support?

6) Why, for the first time, have the terrorists-bad guys attacked a loyalist march, and why precisely when there is a Western journalist?

7) Why does the regime organise tours only in the loyalist neighbourhoods with an Alawite majority (a circumstance confirmed by at least four authoritative colleagues who have participated in these trips)?

a) because, some will say, the other neighbourhoods are too dangerous for the Syrian authorities, who are responsible and care about the safety of their guests. For reasons of safety, in essence.

b) because, others will say, the regime does not want to show the other face of Homs. The one in revolt against the government and the one that is under siege and bombarded by loyalist artillery.

We furthermore report that it took around an hour and a half after the killing of a journalist in Homs for dissemination of the first news for the activists to be able to release any amateur videos on Internet. “Because Akrama is a zone that is forbidden to us, no one can enter at all except for the loyalists,” was what I was told by telephone from two inhabitants of Homs that were reached by phone and who live in the neighbourhoods with a Sunni majority.

The TV channel al Duniya was speedy, instead, in releasing news, something which in these ten months it has never been – which is the same case as the State-run channel Sana – which has been this fast only in case of attacks attributed to Al Qaeda, to salafites and to terrorists.

We await your questions and possible replies. In the meantime, an homage to Gilles Jacquier, winner of the Ilaria Alpi prize in 2011 for the best international reportage for his Tunisie, la révolution en marche.