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Mustafa Hamido Blog

Updated: 2018-02-23T14:22:44.855+02:00




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Postcard from Aleppo


I sent this post card to Windows of the World blog in November 2008. 

Quote from the Blog about my Postcard:

I received a postcard from Syria sent by Mustafa on 6 November, 2008. Showing on the postcard is the Aleppo Citadel which can be dated back as far as 16th century BC.

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A Plea for Caution From Russia


 This article appeared yesterday (11/09/2013)  in New York Times wrote by the Russian president Vladimir Putin directed to the USA people over the recent developments in the world and the USA threats to assault Syria.MOSCOW- RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.It is alarming that military int[...]

The incredible story of how Putin used secret KGB chess tactics to outwit the US


Kavlov in 1949, a secret photograph taken by US intelligence camera concealed in his chess board Michael MetzgerRussia’s incredibly quick response to John Kerry’s suggestion yesterday that Syria could avert a US strike if it handed its chemical weapons was a masterful tactical move by the Kremlin master. Putin instructed his Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to make a statement that Russia will ensure that Syria will surrender and agree to the destruction of its chemical weapon, extending a process a lifeline to president Obama who was struggling to convince US representatives of the necessity of attacking Syria.Many commentators have pointed that Putin’s quick thinking has offered a convenient solution for all involved, but few have recognised the role that chess played in this incident. Keen enthusiast of the game will recognise that Putin’s proposal was a variation on the classic ‘Jabowntski sacrifice’, in which a functionally-degraded chess piece is sacrificed to create space for manoeuvre elsewhere. But that is only half the story. Few people will know of the role chess played in Soviet strategic thinking and the various programmes that the USSR established to train its military and intelligence elites in the art of Zevsebia, or chess-think. Chess-think was for the USSR what game theory was for the US during the Cold War, but the Soviets went further than the Americans in making chess-think second nature to their cadres. According to Soviet documents that were declassified in 2004, the first Zevsebia programme was initiated in 1932 when Stalin, an obsessive chess player, put the man who would later head the NKVD Beria in charge of running the programme. Beria recruited Russian chess grandmaster Kavlov, also a keen amateur boxer who won a bronze medal in the 1924 Olympics, and charged him with developing the outline of the programme. Kavlov’s template was to survive almost unchanged until 1986, when Gorbachev, who had an aversion to chess, cancelled the programme after decades of successful operation during which it trained hundreds of the top Soviet cadres. Kavlov’s combination of intellectual and physical rigorous training provided a winning formula for the programme, and Stalin often joked that graduates were ‘our own Supermen’. One of the few known Jabowntski sacrifice notations The programme was only offered however to a small number of top operatives that had the appropriate levels of mental and physical fitness to pass the rigorous training. In the KGB for example, only agents promoted to the prestigious X2, nicknamed the steel professors, were allowed to receive a Zevsebia training. The X2, as you might have expected, was Vladimir Putin’s old unit in the KGB. An even more interesting fact is that the six remaining Zevsebia graduates are all associated with Putin’s inner policy circles, as former Kremlin insider Yuri Nodov revealed in his critical but obscure 2008 book ‘The Circle’.In one of the few available written documents on Zevsebia, Nodov published a description of the programme and its training routines in his book, providing a valuable insight that has gone largely unnoticed in the West. Not only were the trainees subjected to intensive training in tactics, military theory, chess and physical fitness, they were forced to compete in chess under extreme conditions. For example, the trainees were forced to play rounds of chess inside refrigerator rooms at below-zero temperatures. They were also made to compete inside very hot rooms, invariably while hopping one foot or doing push-ups. It isn’t surprising than fewer than fifteen per cent of all candidates graduated from the programme. It won’t come as a surprise that Putin came top of his class. Putin no doubt came across the ‘Jabowntski sacrifice’ du[...]

Step Up in Syria, Mr. President


Former Lebanese prime minister wrote an article in Foreign Policy magazine encouraging Barack Obama to strike Syria and overthrow its national ruling System. We publish this article for history only. Actually it is a valueless piece with no solid informative base. Step Up in Syria, Mr. PresidentFUAD SINIORA10/09/2013As the United States contemplates whether to intervene in Syria, one cannot but look back and wonder how a brutal despot managed to turn a peaceful revolution into one of the ugliest civil wars of this generation.We all know how it started. The people of the southern city of Daraa spontaneously took to the streets in March 2011, asking for retribution after their children were tortured by the regime's internal security forces. And for over six months, as demonstrations spread across the country, Syrians kept peacefully protesting for justice and systemic reforms. The regime's excessive use of force reflected its brutal nature, but Syrians were equally stubborn in seeking a life of freedom, justice, and dignity.This did not begin as a violent uprising. As Syrians faced bullets with their bare chests in those early days, the demonstrators kept chanting "peaceful, peaceful" and "the Syrian people are one." But the atrocities of the regime and its supporting gangs, the shabiha, eventually forced the Syrian people to take up arms.MoThe United States now faces a critical decision about whether it will make Bashar al-Assad's regime pay for its latest atrocity -- the use of chemical weapons on a Damascus suburb, which killed hundreds of innocent people. If the United States and the international community fail to deal with the ongoing war -- and in particular the latest chemical attack -- it will send a disastrous message to tyrants across the globe that the world will stand idly by while they slaughter their citizens.The West should do more than deal with this single attack: It needs to lead a new process to protect Syria and the broader Arab world from fragmentation. It can do so by supporting the forces of moderation, harnessing the spirit of those Syrian protesters who took to the streets early in the revolution calling for peaceful change. The current strategy has led to results directly opposed to Western interests: It has kept the Syrian regime alive and capable of wreaking havoc across the region, radicalized the opposition, and allowed larger Iranian involvement in the Middle East. It is time to change course.There has already been international intervention in Syria -- on the side of the regime. In stark contrast to the many countries that expressed moral sympathy with the Syrian people, Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah have not hesitated to bolster Assad's killing machine. They have provided financial aid, heavy weapons, and military personnel to better assist Assad in killing his own people.Even as Assad used long-range rockets and modern fighter jets to demolish whole neighborhoods, he cynically portrayed his brutal campaign as a battle against Islamic extremists. He invited the world to choose him as the lesser of two evils, with some success. With the help of Iran and Hezbollah, he continued to deliberately transform a revolution that seeks liberation from a brutal regime into a sectarian conflict -- provoking dangerous spillover violence in a region already wracked by religious tensions, especially with the Palestinian issue still unresolved.At the beginning of the revolution, top figures of the Syrian regime clearly threatened to burn the country to the ground in order to stay in power. More than two years later, it is clear they have made good on their promise: Over 100,000 lives have been lost, over 200,000 people have been injured and many more are imprisoned, and almost a third of the Syrian population is displaced either inside or outside the country. The numbe[...]


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Helicopter Carrying Exam Papers Shotdown


A helicopter carrying exam papers to primary school students in Aleppo countryside was shot down yesterday.The helicopter was flying over the besieged town of Nubol and was carrying basic education examination papers. The helicopters crew as well as other passengers, were killed when the helicopter was hit by a surface to air missile. Among the martyred passengers was a teacher, Hussam Muhammad Youssef.The Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) citing a source, said:The terrorist attack caused the martyrdom of seven civil employees in addition to the helicopter crew.Prime Minister, Dr. Wael al-Halqi condemned the attack, saying:This criminal act against educational cadres who seek to propagate knowledge, the will to live, and emancipation from the criminal mentality came after the armed terrorist groups, who have destructive takfiri thought were vanquished by the enlightened thought.The towns of Nubol and Zahra, north of Aleppo city, have been blockaded by the Free Syrian Army and it’s allies in Jabhat al-Nusra for months. Sectarian atrocities are on the rise in the area, as government troops attempt to confront militants in occupied towns and villages.The attack on the helicopter was later claimed by the ”Bara’ bin Malik” Brigade that belongs to the “Fateh” Battalion of the “Free Syrian Army” (FSA).Hussam Muhammad YoussefAs published by on 30 June 2013[...]

Bander's Visit to Moscow


Bander bin Sultan, the Saudi Intelligence chief, has visited Russia  and met the Russian president. We have to wait days before we know the reason of this visit. But, the media in the middle east is full of predictions about his mission. I can assure the he has visited Russia to discuss Syria. It is known that Saudi Arabia and Bander himself was the mastermind behind the war on Syria. They were hidden behind The Qatari and the Turkish stances against Syria. Media started promoting that he offered Russia a deal to ease its stance beside Syria to let the western intervention be legalized by the UN. According to  Reuters he gave Russian guarantees over their domination on the natural gas market. He also offered them a deal to buy  arms from it as a substitute of its exports to Syria.
We can say that he offered Russia  a compensation deal as an alternative of its acceptance of losing Syria. Anyway, we can't trust these information at all. The Russian side denied all these information and said apparently that Bander has never ever talked about these issues.
The other side of the world battle, the resistance side, published his own story about Banders' visit. Leaks say that he went to Russia to guarantee a position for himself in any future compromise in the Middle East. These leaks say also that he realized that his project in Syria has failed and he is convinced that all his propaganda toward the armament of  terrorists in Syria is no thing but an attempt from him to book a place in the new Middle East. The destiny of the kingdom itself is threatened  after the Syain's victory. Every side now has his own story and his own assumption about his visit.
Every one in the region knows very well that the Saudi prominent figure is working on behalf  of US intelligence. It is widely known that he is the American local broker in the Middle East. Although US had used Qataris as their brokers in the region, it is known that the genuine and the most trusted side is Saudis.  The prove is the ousting of Emir of Qatar from the ruling and replacing him by his son. Saudis are the only trusted side in the region. Qataris as well as other small Gulf states are in fact  tactical aids of the US. The strategic partner is Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia is confronting a lot of threats in the near future. The ruling System and the successors of the old figures are the top of these threats. It is know known that there are a lot of clashes between the different Saudi royal family wings over the ruling system and the succession of the old figures as well as the kingdom foreign policy

Al-Nusra with Foreign Weapons


More evidence of Jabhat al-Nusra militants using foreign weapons has emerged. Among the deluge of videos and images uploaded on a regular basis, the following images were spotted by Syria Report showing militants allegedly fighting in Busra al-Sham (Arabic: بصرى‎). The town in southern Syria, is conveniently located in Dara’a province close to the border with Jordan which harbours critical supply lines of both militants and weapons.Three days ago, an article by Syria Reportdetailed the activities of militant groups in the south. An organisation calling itself the Yarmouk Martyrs brigade, famous for abducting UN personnel on two occasions, stealing UN vehicles and executing captured soldiers – received foreign weapons. Evidence suggests that a myriad of insurgent groups have received foreign weapons from Croatia in an operation coordinated by the United States, Turkey, Jordan & Saudi Arabia.The arms trafficking was implemented with at least 160 military cargo flights from Croatia, as reported by the New York Times following an exposé by a Croatian newspaper.The weapons transported to factions were the M79 Osa anti-tank weapon, the RBG-6 grenade launcher, the M60 recoilless rifle, and the RPG-22. Each of these has been spotted hundreds of times in footage uploaded by some of Syria’s myriad of militant organisations, of which there are said to be over a thousand. Indeed, the weapons are all currently used by the Croatian military. Additionally, it should be noted that several other types of foreign-produced weapons have been spotted in Syria, such as assault rifles and sniper rifles.Recently, a number of images uploaded by Jabhat al-Nusra indicated skirmishes with Syrian forces in Busra al-Sham, close to the border with Jordan. In the images, the M60 recoilless anti-tank rifle, included in the foreign effort to arm insurgents, can be seen: This isn’t the first instance of Jabhat al-Nusra being seen operating weapons, in their possession most likely as a result of the operation to arm militant groups.The following image from February shows a Jabhat al-Nusra militant handling a M79 Osa anti-tank weapon. The image was included with a statement posted on an global Jihadist online forum, which detailed an insurgent operation involving a number of allied groups. The reality of of co-operating insurgent factions, increasingly under the command of Jabhat al-Nusra, casts significant doubt on American statements regarding “identifying” and arming the “right” groups. The reality also underlines the doubts and fears felt by many, firstly, that militant groups are untrustworthy, extremist in their outlook, ideology and operation, and have committed countless war crimes. Indeed, the nature of the armed opposition vindicates comments by Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad who spoke of the multiple terror groups who have no political platform to speak of.On 2 March, another operation in Dara’a province by Jabhat al-Nusra and other groups, shows a M60 recoilless gun being used to attack an army outpost, Hajez Barad, in Busr al-Harir. Again, this type of weapon was part of the global and regional operation to arm militant groups in Syria.In the video below, from Al-Jazeera Arabic, the M79 Osa anti-tank weapon can be seen, in the hands of a Jabhat al-Nusra insurgent.All of the images and footage substantiate a January report from Alikhbaria Syria, showing a massive seizure of some of the arms destined for militants. The seizure was made in Dara’a, again, close to the border with Jordan and the same region in which Jabhat al-Nusra and other Jihadist groups have been spotted w[...]

Former UNDOF officer: Israeli support to terrorists is on large scale


(SANA)- An Austrian officer who worked within the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) in Golan revealed that Israel provides a large-scale support for the armed terrorist groups in Syria.
Declining to reveal his name, the Austrian officer told the Palestinian al-Manar newspaper that the scale of Israeli support to the armed terrorist groups spread in some villages in Golan is very large and includes all logistic, military and medical fields.
Speaking in a statement in occupied Palestine on his way back to Austria, after the withdrawal of the Austrian battalion from the UNDOF, the officer affirmed the existence of a joint operation room between the armed terrorist gangs and Israel to coordinate the delivery of assistance to the terrorists.
He added that this room also coordinates the entry of injured terrorists into Israel to be admitted to hospitals in the nearby Israeli settlements, citing Zeif hospital in Safed.
The newspaper quoted the Austrian officer as saying that this joint operation room is in constant contact with the Israeli military and security sides to facilitate weapons transport from Israel to the terrorists.
He pointed out that the UNDOF has information that large numbers of terrorists were transported to local and field hospitals over the past three months.
The Austrian officer revealed that the disengagement zone between Syria and Israel was used to provide support for the gunmen, many of whom he said came to Israel from neighboring countries over the last months and then moved into the occupied Syrian Golan to reinforce the terrorist groups.
Tens of media reports and statements of terrorist groups' leaders clearly disclosed the scale of the Israeli coordination with and support for the armed gangs not only through logistic and military assistance but also through direct intervention in terms of launching attacks on Syrian sites.
Many leaders of the Israeli occupation entity have repeatedly stressed that the downfall of the Syrian state is a strategic interest for Israel as this would help undermine the resistance in the region of which Syria is a main pillar.

My Note: Rohani as a President


How the new elected Iranian president will react over the Syrian war? This question is exciting an lot who doubt that he will stand beside the the western alliance and even be part of this war against Syria. The Iranian ruling system is very complicated. The president has no crucial role over a lot of internal and external issues. It is not an one man show system .
 It is an integrated system where the president has a little هinfluence in comparison to the western ruling system where the key person in the all system is the president. I don't doubt here in his stance over Syria as he comes from a reforming background. The western media considers reformists as western alliance and they bear all the trouble in the the relationship between Iran and the west to the conservatives.

''A State under Attack, Not a State in Crisis''


The professional Russian TV, RT, published today an exclusive detailed interview with the British National Party leader and European MP Nick Griffin, in which he objectively expressed reasonable and rational ideas and impressions about the ongoing in Syria. Mr. Griffin stated that people didn’t see Syria as perfect before the civil war, but it was a secular, tolerant state, which will be lost if takfiri fundamentalists  prevail, lashing out at the involvement in Syria as “a criminal action” on the part of the US.MP Griffin pointed out that the Obama administration, by arming the takfiri fundamentalists, will provide arms to the same people, who launched the 9/11 attack on America.  In reply to a question regarding al-Marjah Square, central Damascus, two suicide bombers'  attacks, MP Griffen said that  when you walk around the streets there’s ordinary people, there’s families, there’s people, who are strict Muslims and others, who are secular. Getting on with their lives and trying to ignore the bomb blasts, which go off occasionally. I’ve seen the same thing in Northern Ireland. People get used to this. Life continues. Certainly, in Damascus this is a state under attack, it’s not a state in crisis.   MP Griffen recalled what happened in Afghanistan when the West, the CIA, the British state armed AL-Qaeda to fight the Soviet Union, pointing out that ''once the Soviet Union was finished, the jihadis didn’t go away, they turned their attention elsewhere. And what we’ve got now, they’re managing to turn huge parts – fortunately shrinking parts of presence in Syria – into a giant terrorist training camp.MP Griffen  underscored that the majority of people fighting in Syria against the Syrian government are ''foreign terrorists, tens of thousands of them, including hundreds from the EU, some of them even in Britain. When the war is over here they’re going to come back to Britain, come back to Western Europe and continue their jihad, but this time we’ll be the targets.''  Regarding his expectations about whether the US would  go ahead with weapons supplies to the opposition, given the Syrian hero army gains against terrorists on the ground, MP Griffen expressed fear that the US will go ahead with weapon supplies as ''There are a number of people a number of organizations and countries involved in this criminal drive to destroy secular Syria. One of them is the US government, not ordinary American people. They’re working out a plan which was produced at the start of the century by a group calling itself the Project for New American Century and they wanted to secure energy supplies for the US and also to contain Russia. That’s what this attack on Syria is the latest of this criminal action by the US. They’re not the only ones to blame, but they’re a significant part of it…. even though in doing so they’re arming the same people as attacked the US on 9/11.''   About his assessments and impressions during his current visit to Syria, along with an EU Parliamentarian delegation, MP Griffen said: ''We’ve also been able to talk with ordinary Syrians at all sorts of different levels. Something that comes out from all those people who we speak to is that Syria wasn’t perfect, but it was a secular and tolerant state where no one even cared if someone was Sunni or Shia or Christian or Jewish. They go on with it and that’s the thing, which is going to be destroyed if this carries on. And everyone I was there with, I think, gets this point and agrees with me and the vast majo[...]

Irish Positions on Syria


By Anthony Carragher.I thought this may be of interest to some of your readers. It is the stances of the political parties here in Ireland on the Syrian conflict. It should be noted that recently, Walid Saffour was allowed to speak at a small meeting in the Houses of the Oireachtas (Irish Parliament buildings) where he called on elected officials to support a no-fly zone and lifting of the arms embargo. He received little support from the elected representatives.Fine Gael (Family of the Irish): Fine Gael is a Christian Democratic centre-right party and currently the largest party in Ireland. It is only active in southern Ireland where it won 76 seats in the Dáil (Irish Parliament) and is currently the senior coalition partner in government where its leader Enda Kenny TD, holds the position of Taoiseach (Prime Minister).As the foreign affairs portfolio is handled by its junior government partner, the Labour Party, Fine Gael has made little statements on the Syria crisis apart from calls for increased humanitarian aid for those displaced as a result of the conflict.At the party’s Ard Fheis (annual conference) in 2012, however, it adopted the following motion unanimously: “Fine Gael believes that the actions of the Syrian regime in attacking and killing innocent civilians represent crimes against humanity, and that the deliberate obstruction of UN action by Russia and China is an affront to the world.”Labour Party: The Labour Party is the second largest party in the Dáil with 33 seats where it is the junior partner in a colaition government. The party is centre-left and closely allied to the Irish Trade Union movement. The party’s leader, Eamon Gilmore, is Tánaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) and also Minister for Foreign Affairs. He has opposed the lifting of an arms embargo on Syria saying it would lead to increased violence.Gilmore has also called for those responsible for the violence to be referred to the International Criminal Court saying: “Those who are responsible for the slaughter, those who are carrying it out and those who are directing it, have to know there will be a consequence, just as 20 years ago there was a consequence for those who slaughtered people in the Balkans. Ireland has taken a lead in a number of countries who are asking the United Nations to refer what is happening in Syria to the International Criminal Court.”Gilmore has, however, also outlined support for the opposition by stating in October 2012: “The Syrian opposition must also work more closely together to forge a united vision for a democratic Syria to which all their compatriots can rally. I welcome the recent progress made and hope that efforts to build up greater opposition unity under the Arab League can continue.”Fianna Fáil (Soldiers of Destiny): Fianna Fáil is the third-largest political party in the Republic Ireland with 19 seats in the Dáil although historically it has dominated Irish political life since the 1920s. It suffered a heavy defeat at the ballot box due to its mishandling of the economic crisis. It is centrist and republican, meaning it wishes to see Ireland reunited as a single state. The party has been more vocal than any other in its support for the Syrian opposition.On the 29 June the party’s leader, Mícheál Martin TD, (who previously served as Ireland’s Minister for Foreign Affairs) said he believed the government’s opposition to lifting the arms embargo on Syria was the “wrong call”. He instead outlined his parties support for th[...]

Teenage Boy Executed in Occupied Aleppo


Militants yesterday executed a fifteen year old boy in an incident which is likely to further alienate Aleppo’s population from an occupying Islamist insurgents.Syria and Aleppo-based social media pages were abuzz with shock and condemnation as details emerged of a young coffee seller who was shot in front of family members and onlookers.Extremely graphic images of the executed boy are spreading through social media platforms.Mohammad Kattaa had been shot through his mouth. Reports suggest Kataa was in an argument with another boy over free coffee, with Kataa saying “even if Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) comes down, I will not give it as debt.Mohammad used to sell coffee in Sad al-Louz area in the al-Shaar district.He was later said to have been detained by an extremist group in the area, beaten and then shot when his mother and father had been found so that they could be forced to witness the execution.Later reports suggested that the group that is said to have carried out the killing had links to a number of al-Qaeda groups fighting the Syrian government.Public executions are common in areas where al-Qaeda aligned groups occupy. Fear and poverty are rife as areas are cut off from other communities due to the worsened security situation which results following the presence of militant groups.Armed groups have taken advantage of the security vacuum in Aleppo and other locations to commit rights abuses.Recently, armed organisations in Aleppo including the Free Syrian Army, announced a merger with Jabhat al-Nusra.[...]

Air to Air Missiles Fired on Villages by Militants


Earlier today, Lebanese satellite television station Al-Manar broadcasted some exclusive footage from the freshly taken city of Al-Qusayr. Among the items left behind by the fleeing militants, Al-Manar also presented some missiles supposedly of Israeli or American production. As a military tech connoisseur I feel it is my duty to clarify some things.These are not Israeli, but Soviet K-13 air-to-air missiles which are used on MiG-21, MiG-23 or on Sukhoi 17/20/22. The K-13, dubbed by NATO as “AA-2 Atoll”, is a short-range, infrared homing air-to-air missile reverse-engineered by the Soviet Union in 1960, from the American AIM-9 “Sidewinder”. The missile has an operational range of 8 km (5 miles) and can travel at speeds of up to Mach 2,5. Among the most important wars in which the K-13 saw action are the Yom Kippur War and Vietnam war (in limited numbers with the North Vietnamese Air Force).The militants probably stole them from al-Daba’a air-base. Recent reports seemed to indicate that a part of the military airport  has fallen under militant’s control, and some videos emerged on pro-opposition channels showing equipment captured, including this type of missiles. It seems they decided to make use of these air-to-air missiles, by removing the seeker and guidance sections and firing them through an improvised launcher (as you can see in the pictures and in the video below).  We should probably wonder how the missiles detonate when they reach their target, because that job was done by the seeker which they removed. I believe the answer to this question lies in the pictures below, where we can see what appears to be an improvised, self-made impact fuse.Although K-13’s warhead weighs just 11,3 kg (24,9 lb), it is composed out of trinitrotoluene (TNT), cyclotrimethylene-trinitramine (RDX, which was developed as an explosive more powerful than TNT and to be used mixed with other explosives) and shrapnel, which can cause serious wounds by embedding itself into a human body destroying organs, can enter the gut area and cause severe damage laying the person’s stomach wide open, or even cause paralysis to less fortunate victims. Shrapnel can enter the body at any angle and can be in extremely small pieces which is difficult for the surgeon to remove.These are highly irresponsible actions, because due to the random fire of handmade mortars and rudimentary modified rockets, most of them end up in densely populated areas, killing innocent civilians. These missiles are almost certainly going to be inaccurate and pose a threat even to those who use them. But this is part of their tactics, as usual, they fire towards cities or villages, then rush to the place of impact to make video material for the mainstream media to show the world „more victims of the Assad regime”.The following video shows militants from the Farouq Brigades firing the missiles:This rocket is our ‘letter’ to Assadist & Hezbollah troops.He then adds that the rocket is fired at “Alawite villages”. allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="360" src="" width="640"> Philip George studies Foreign Policy at the University of Bucharest, Romania, and is a military technology expert. Philip is an author with and an activist with the European Solidarity Front for Syria.[...]

On Behalf


They are thinking we will give them Syria to seize its resources and steal its people. We have decided that we must defend our beloved Syria and struggle against those western intelligence agents who are working on behalf of their masters. It becomes clear for all that the conflict in Syria belongs to the strategic location of Syria and its future. Syria, without any doubt, is the key of the future of the world.
It simply connects China to the Mediterranean. This is significant for the future of China and the future of the western dominance on the world trade and the financial services.We will see a series of wars in this region. USA refuse to admit that its era is almost over. 

Al-Qusayr: Final Push


The battle for al-Qusayr is ongoing. The army’s strategy from the beginning of May was to surround and isolate the city, bombard militant positions in an attempt to break resistance and inflict heavy losses.To implement this strategy, the army’s deployment included elements of the 3rd, 4th, and Republican Guard Armored Divisions backed by Hezbollah fighters and National Defence Force personnel.Following a stunning deployment of artillery and airpower on May 19th, Syrian forces and it’s allied guerrilla detachments of the National Defence Forces (NDF) and Hezbollah stormed al-Qusayr. Within the first day, the centre of the  city was secured.CounterinsurgencyStrategyThe importance of Hezbollah’s involvement is notable – a high professional and coherent guerrilla movement which makes for an effective and reliable fighting force in the battle for the key city.Due to it’s proximity to Lebanon, al-Qusayr is an attractive position for militant groups trafficking arms and personnel. al-Qusayr is a strategic link between Damascus, the coast, and Homs, Hama and Aleppo to the north.The fight for al-Qusayr has seen the co-ordinated deployment of the army’s inventory – combining elite army units and effective guerrilla fighters supported by armour, artillery and airpower.In keeping with increased sectarian rhetoric emanating from opposition circles, allegations abound that Hezbollah is “leading the fight” and outnumbers government troops. The opposite is true, with government troops accounting for some eighty per-cent of the deployment.Although initial efforts by government forces was impressive and fruitful, sources predicted that the securing of the city in total may “take weeks”.  Counterinsurgency campaigns are inherently difficult to execute, and require continuous rethinking. The remaining militant groups are resisting with a combination of sniper units, booby traps and attacks from entrenched and concealed positions.The al-Qusayr assault is an operational-level action with the army and it’s allies using battle and maneuver to later achieve strategic goals in Homs. Indeed, the army in engaged at many flashpoints in the vicinity of al-Qusayr; Arjoun, al-Daba’a and al-Hamadiyeh being such examples. The overwhelming deployment has resulted in chaos, confusion and desperation behind enemy lines. The operational level of war is strongly associated with Soviet and Russian military thought.MilitantReinforcementsMany claims of large-scale reinforcements have been made by militant groups, including Jabhat al-Nusra. The Syrian army’s successful fast paced battle and maneuver tactics, desperate calls for assistance by encircled militants  and a romanticised view of being killed in action in a battle that will inevitably be lost, compels insurgents and supporters to send reinforcements.Claims circulated yesterday that a militant detachment from Liwa al-Tawhid had reached al-Qusayr. Similarly, a much reported claim by Jabhat al-Nusra last week proved to be unrealistic and untrue. Videos uploaded showed groups of militants in isolated, rural and open areas – underlining speculation that claims of sending “reinforcements” amount to propaganda.Images uploaded yesterday allegedly show one such detachment who were ambushed as they attempted to infiltrate the  al-Qusayr area of Syrian army operations. Graphic images[...]

Yara Abbas in Her Own Words


Reputable Journalist Sharmine Narwani, who is based in Lebanon, writes a tribute to Yara Abbas, who was killed in Homs while covering the Syrian army operation in Al-Qusayr and surrounding areas.She also dedicates her article to a list of other media personnel who died while covering the conflict.The following are excerpts from Narwani’s article. Syria Report recommends reading in full.I met Al Ikhbariya journalist Yara Abbas for the first and only time in August 2012. I was organizing my trip into Aleppo and was looking to talk to someone on the ground about safety issues. An acquaintance of Yara’s who worked at my hotel told me he knew a journalist on the front lines of the conflict in Aleppo, and gave me her number. When Yara and I finally spoke, she was on her way back to Damascus and warned me down the phone line about the road between Aleppo and its airport, at the time subject to random checkpoints set up by armed rebels.…Yara’s account of her nine days embedded with the army in Aleppo confirmed this for me, but she surprised me with the information that the soldiers she travelled with mostly slept in the conflict zone itself – in a vacant home or sometimes on the street. Having wrested back territory, they were unwilling to leave it for the night.  When I asked her if she was afraid, Yara was emphatic that she has never been afraid of moving in sniper-filled corridors. She told me that the soldiers – whom she had first met in Damascus and then followed into Aleppo – protected her with their lives and made her feel safe.…On the militias: I saw three from Lebanon, one from Africa, from Libya. All of the ones whose passports we found in their hideout had travelled to Saudi Arabia, Cyprus and Turkey – there are stamps in their passports. Some of their weapons are coming on the Lebanon-Syria border via donkeys.They send out women and kids to see where the soldiers are, what they are doing. I saw a woman with a stroller myself – soldiers asked me to go talk to her. She had guns in her pram that she was delivering to militias.They sent an old man past one checkpoint saying he wants to go check on his home – he had a bomb on him and they detonated it.…On the Syrian army:You see our soldiers when they are attacked, sometimes when they are dead. You cannot be separated from this. These soldiers know they’re going to be killed. They stand in the middle of the street and shoot – they are not afraid. They have a mission.A soldier from Talbiseh (near Homs) has seven gunshots in his body from Duma and he’s come back to fight.From Rastan, Deraa, Idlib – all of them don’t want to go back – they want to stay and fight.One soldier, a Sunni from Idlib had a gunshot in his leg – he refused to leave the army. He went to the hospital and came back the next day to fight in Aleppo. In Idlib militias put pressure on his family to make him leave the army – they took his brother for a while, beat him up a bit. But the soldier said “they can take my whole family, but not my country.” I did a story on him.[...]