Allahu Akbar!

‘’God is Great ‘’ the oft repeated words that one can hear everywhere in the Muslim world. They are an intrinsic part of the Islamic culture- said during prayer and chanted from off the rooftops of minarets. The words are used to celebrate the greatness and goodness of god. They are used to indicate a kind deed or good fortune. And for those Muslims not living in the Muslim world listening to them is like coming back home. They offer a sense of security , peace and yes happiness. But all that was in the past!

 Allahu Akbar has within the past two years in Syria taken a different –unfortunately contradictory- meaning. For it has been abused and the name of Allah taken in vain time and time again. It is almost blood curdling to hear it now for it often heralds news of a death , an explosion , a murder or an execution. Usually shouted by heavily bearded men with fanatical eyes just before committing an atrocity . A completely alien image to the Syria most Syrians know!

 A lot of them are unknown militants coming from many different groups each with their own plans and agendas ! But what they all have in common is their abuse of religion to promote whatever action they undertake. Choosing poor and uneducated societies to inhabit they grow in popularity , telling people how to think and what to dress in. Such societies are fertile ground for extreme Islamists. They are societies rife with corruption and brutality where execution of the kidnapped  is based on his/her sect or the place of work. Sharia courts are common procedure there where sentencing is passed and implemented immediately.

 A lot of these fundamentalists pre dominantly come from the country side ( as in Aleppo ) which further alienates them from the urban dwellers of the city who had always lived in peace and relative economic comfort with almost no interference from the government.

 It is very difficult to pinpoint who these groups belong to. They are not all Jubhat Al Nusra. A lot of them belong to similar groups financed and armed by different countries. For instance Saudi will finance and arm the insurgents in Daraa . Jordan will train them . Qatar will finance those in Idlib. Turkey will provide the logistics ( Aleppo being the biggest recipient ). Britain and France pretend to only want to finance and arm the opposition and not the extremists. All in all it is chaos which often leads to mayhem.

This is also a direct result of an unrecognizable opposition- One that is hampered by infighting and a lack of structure and deeply infiltrated by foreign fighter and terrorist groups.

 And all these groups and what is happening in Syria will give Islam a bad name for a long time and will set back Syrians who are proud and happy to be Muslims – to be part of a religion where even the basic greeting is an invitation to peace . A Religion where negotiation is accredited and where its role is to facilitate the lives of its followers rather than to make difficulties . It will take a long time for Syrians to forgive what is being done in Syria to Islam, equating that heavenly religion with terrorism, fanaticism and hatred .

Reem Haddad

Hand-in Hand

Reactions in strong terms to the Arab League's latest decision concerning Syria received and are still receiving worldwide condemnations.

Actually, the problem is not only confined to the decision's repercussions but also to the unprecedented AL's move that will definitely undermine the basis of work at regional and international organizations.

  It is obvious that the said decision was thoroughly discussed by the vicious powers spearheaded by the US and the western-backed puppet states (Qatar and Saudi Arabia).

President Obama's recent visit to the region has strongly contributed in supporting efforts in a bid to topple the Syrian government.

When the Syrians inched forward concerning attaining the peaceful solution to the two-year long crisis, the global conspiracy intensified.

However, it is to no avail the France ignored its previous decision to arm the terrorists in Syria while Britain gave no ear to the terrorists' demands. No one can deny that the moves of the said powers are grave and they must totally halt support to mercenaries simply because only the Syrian are able to peacefully and through dialogue attain security and stability to the cradle of civilization, thanks to unlimited sacrifices of the Army and first and foremost backing the legitimate and the elected leader of Syria H.E President Bashar Al-Assad.  


By:Ahmad Orabi Baaj


Translated and edited by:Maysa Wassouf

The ‘’Sumptuous Summit‘’

Well sumptuous because Qatar has hosted it and had spent lavish sums of money on it. It had taken the Arab Summit and made it Qatari- a terminology more apt would have been the’’ Qatari Summit’’. Using and abusing its money Qatar manipulated ,coerced ( with the help of its more muscular friends ) and tricked those attending the summit into turning a blind eye to the farce that happened.

 It is very clear when reading the charter of the Arab league that no country has the right to oust another country out of its rightful place. The only way that can happen, is by consensus of all member countries attending- which didn’t happen! A lot of stealth was involved! It was only after all member countries had taken their seats, that it was announced that the Syrian delegation would be joining the summit – only this delegation wasn’t the legal one – the one representing the Syrian people. It was comprised of people that until recently no one in Syria had heard of – and in particular Moaz Al Khatib head of the delegation who had , four days prior to the summit, submitted his resignation from the Syrian National Coalition only to rescind it a day later and head the delegation and Hitto whom no one – no one in Syria had heard of until he became ‘’ Prime Minister ‘’!!! In addition there was a token Christian and a token woman. They grouped themselves uncomfortably- Hitto possibly thinking he should be leading that particular delegation. And so Moaz Al Khatib launched into his speech. To many it sounded like the sermon of an imam delivered during Friday prayers-which indeed is what he was prior to the ‘’revolution’’. His words were dramatic and they all rhymed- possibly more fit for a poetry reading. He asked for more intervention from the USA and from NATO. He asked for rockets to be placed in the north of Syria to ‘’protect’’ the civilian population. He urged jihad and then he said something strange. Something that should have rung alarm bells in the minds of those listening. He exempted from jihad those with needy parents – even , even if the parents were Christians!!

 This is something well worth pondering for those in the west who support that kind of thinking and that ideology. What exactly are they inviting in? Today they invite the Islamists and the fundamentalists into Syria. Tomorrow they won’t wait for an invitation to spread to Europe!

 Many questions arise from the Arab Summit- will it be normal practice now to allow the opposition a seat? Will next summit see a seat for the Bahraini opposition? Who chooses who keeps the seat? How did these individual countries decide? For example were the Somali people given a choice of who should represent Syria in the summit and they chose the opposition? Or is it only a designer opposition that they will go for- one that suits and caters to them ?


Reem Haddad

Gone With the Wind

Undoubtedly, the US is not interested in halting the ongoing crisis in Syria. But if things go in contradiction with its staunch ally in the region, Israel, then the ugly face of the US Administration will be unveiled.

Others, who do believe that they have deep ties the US are nothing but puppets and mere tools.

 The US thinks that it has two chances of what is going on in Syria: they believe that the current situation will strongly contribute in weakening the sole stronghold in the region that resists the Israel's project .The US has also another precious chance concerning getting rid of extremists of al-Qaeda through sending them to Syria.

Hence, when the Syrian army has the upper hand in the field and the political solution chances approach, we find an unprecedented media, political and diplomacy escalation in a bid to destroy Syria.

Actually, statements released by officials from ex-colonialism states as regards arming terrorists are not fresh as arming terrorist groups never stops.

The said statements urged terrorists to perpetrate heinous crime to the extent that they used chemical weapons against the Syrians.

France and Britain, indeed, are relentlessly running for a room in the rear seat of the Russia-US train.

The France-Britain policy towards Syria has urged the Arab League to give Syria's seat to the 'opposition'. This simply means that the US, which masterminds the play, lauded and praised steps to be taken regarding lifting embargo on weapons to be sent to terrorists in Syria.

To sum up, the vicious plans against Syria will go with the wind as the Syrians are insisting to defend their beloved homeland.


Ahmad Orabi Ba'aj


Edited and translated By: Mayssa Wassouf

Women and the Crisis





  It is only apt that on the occasion of mother’s day in Syria which falls on march 21st , the role of women should be mentioned .The role of women in general in Syria ,and the role of women in this crisis .

   The Syrian government has forever broadcasted how much it has pushed for women’s rights- but in reality much more should have been done. Although there is female representation in parliament and in the government it is nowhere near fair or enough. Divorce laws are still harsh and unfair to women as are inheritance laws. A Syrian woman married to a non Syrian up till this date isn’t allowed to pass on her nationality to her offspring!  And honour crimes are still not punished by law as they should be. Much more should have been done in empowering women and much more should have been done in planting the seed of gender equality in Syrian education and Syrian culture. The government treated such issues at a superficial level ,rather than delving  into the roots of the problem. Women themselves pose a problem sometimes, for in the hearts of their hearts they believe they are subservient to men no matter how educated they are or from what strata of life they come from.

    But having said all this – the question remains what is the position of women in this ‘’ revolution? ‘’ will it empower them? Will it give them the equality that they are sadly lacking? Will their voices be heard? Or their faces seen? Or their demands met ?

   Sadly it doesn’t look so for the pillars of this’’ revolution ‘’ appear to be religious extremism and radicalism which are knows to oppress women.

   The men of this ''revolution'' are Islamist men who want to institute sharia law and cut down on women’s rights. No one in the opposition is talking about women’s rights. The narrative of the opposition when found has no new insights to offer when it comes to women. The vast majority of the opposition’s political and media activists are men and this is proven just by following the reporting that is done on Syria on various TV stations- it is almost always male voices that narrating the numerous you tube videos. The women when present are always present as victims who have been tortured , widowed or raped- who are weak and helpless and have  no hold over their destiny.

    And in reality even worse happens to these women who have the bad luck to live in refugee camps outside Syria. There have been many documented cases of rape or else of young girls who are sold as brides for a cheap price to Gulf Arabs. The opposition has done nothing to protect these women , neither is it on their agenda .

   Even in the local opposition councils inside Syria women are grossly underrepresented as they are in the opposition bodies outside the country.

   There is no fair deal for women in general, but for those hoping to find favourable change and who support the ‘’revolution’’ their scenario reads far worse than others.


Reem Haddad