Category Archives: Lebanon & Syria

A quoi rêve le dictateur ?

Par Salima Naït Ahmed – 25 janvier 2012

La série de Masasit Mati

Le régime syrien ? Un régime répressif, où l’opposition politique a toujours peiné à se constituer, où la liberté d’expression est quasi nulle et peut coûter très cher à ceux qui oseraient tout de même s’en saisir. Voilà l’idée qu’on pouvait se faire de la Syrie. Le pays a surpris une première fois en montrant que le mouvement de protestation arabe pouvait s’y étendre. Continue reading

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Hezbollah: Is this still really resistance?

 Commentary by Riccardo Dugulin – 15 January 2012

Source: theblaze.com

The term ‘resistant’ provides the person it describes with an almost immediate moral high ground. Regardless of the historical time and place, once put into a conflict situation the resistant is an individual that willingly decides to make disproportionate sacrifices and to take above than average risks to defend his values and homeland. From the Hashashiyyin Shiite rebels resisting Sunni Saljuq rule in Persia between 1092 and 1265 to the armed Algerian factions freeing their territory from French occupation in the 1950’s; resistance movements always face a large and organized foreign army with elements of indirect and asymmetric warfare. Beyond the concrete operational techniques such armed groups decide to use to protect and free their homeland, the resistant is the beneficiary of almost complete moral superiority. Continue reading

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Politics and the Opposition: The Debate that is Failing the Syrian Revolution

Commentary by Tamer Mallat – 10 January 2012

Arab League Foreign Ministers meeting on Syria. Source: bbc.co.uk/

The ten month long Syrian Revolution has entered a dangerous phase. Close to three months will have passed since the Syrian National Council was formed, and the streets of Syria are no less bloody than they were before the opposition organized into an effective body in October. The legitimate and anti-Assad SNC umbrella is hardly to blame for the worsening condition of a cancerous regime pushing its “treatment” program into overdrive. If anything, the maturing course of the council has rendered Bashar al-Assad’s political credibility close to null. While his speeches were hardly ever impressive, the disowned Syrian leader’s infamous Barbara Walter’s interview revealed just how little anyone still took the President’s words seriously. Dubbed delusional, Assad joined the ranks of discredited Middle Eastern leaders no longer in control of the monopoly of the Arab political space they once owned. The consequences of such an evolution, while seemingly positive, have also produced paradoxical side effects. Continue reading

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The Syrian National Council Versus the Goons of Skepticism

Commentary by Tamer Mallat – 14 November 2011

Burhan Ghalioun's Address to the Nation, November 2nd 2011

It’s been eight months now since the start of the Revolution in Syria, and much has yet to be done. Lousy diplomacy and trivial politics have so far cost thousands of people their lives, not to mention the tens of thousands currently locked up in the despicable jails of Bashar. Yet, there is hope. The final formation of the Syrian National Council last month was crucial for the survival of Syria’s battered revolutionaries. With no resources at its disposal, and skepticism haunting its every move, the SNC has defiantly, albeit slowly, been able to muster up support for its quest to dislodge Bashar al-Assad’s regime from power and pave the way for democracy in a country that has known darkness for over forty years. Just last Friday, the Arab League made some headway by threatening to suspend Syria’s membership if the regime does not halt its ruthless repression. The suspension of the regime’s membership would no doubt represent a game changer for the seemingly endless Syrian Revolution. Continue reading

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Interview: Anthony Shadid on the Political Reconfiguration of the Middle East (Part II)

Interview – 9 November 2011

Source: Associated Press/ Amr Nabil

This is the second part of an interview conducted by Shereen Dbouk with Anthony Shadid in Beirut, on the 2nd of November, 2011. Click here for the first part of the interview. Continue reading

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Who Lost Lebanon? From Politics of Confrontation to Compromise

Commentary by Takuya Matsuda – 2 September 2011

Rafiq Hariri & Hassan Nasrallah

The year 2011 already seemed likely to flower into a turbulent year for the Middle East, even before the advent of the “Arab Spring” that toppled close to three dictators in the region. Hezbollah’s withdrawal from the national unity government in Lebanon, which kept the country’s chronic sectarian conflicts from resurfacing for the past few years, sparked fears that the Lebanese “time bomb” was finally going to explode. Nobody could have predicted “the Arab Spring”, a series of historical events that have rocked the region’s authoritarian regimes since January. Continue reading

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كبش المحرقة

بقلم أسامة حريري – ٢٧ آب ٢٠١١

شهدت الأيّام الأخيرة سلسلة أحداث هزّت منطقة الشّرق الأوسط وأعلنت بداية سيناريو جديد. للوهلة الأولى ، قد تبدو هذه الأحداث عشوائيّة وغير مترابطة. لكن قي الواقع هي متّصلة ببعضها البعض وهدفها واحد. أماّ السّؤال الأبرز الذي يهمّنا هو : من هو المستفيد من هذه الفوضى المنظّمة ؟ ولماذا هذا التوقيت بالذات ؟ من الواضح جدّا ً اليوم أنّ أبرز الأزمات وأكثرها تعقيدا ً هي الأزمة التي تشهدها سوريا نظرا ً لموقعها الإستراتيجي بين العراق وتركيا ولبنان و إسرائيل. الأزمة في سوريا لم تعد تقتصر على نظام ٍ مستبدّ يقتل شعبه يوميا ً ، بل أيضا ً على لعبة دول ٍ كُبرى تتصارع في ما بينها . أحد أوجه هذا الصّراع هو إيراني –أميركي. Continue reading

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