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Syria Media Roundup (January 24)
[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Syria and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Syria Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to firstname.lastname@example.org by Monday night of every week.]
Regional and International Perspectives
Syria: The Analogies of History Daniel Neep explores “the ways in which the challenges faced by today’s rebels relate to those faced by the rebels of the 1920s, positing that historical solutions may well help the Syrian people in their struggle against the Assad regime nearly ninety years later.”
Bleeding from a Triple Hemorrhage Vijay Prashad provides a summary of developments in Syria’s crisis and concludes that “a fragile hope rests on the revitalization of Arab nationalism as a cord that binds the people across the widening sectarian divides.”
Should Obama Have Intervened in Syria? Marc Lynch says a US intervention would have made things worse.
Fund Syria’s Moderates Responding to Lynch, Robin Yassin-Kassab idealistically says there remain ways for the US to help alleviate Syrian suffering which consists in helping the “moderate” and “secular” elements of the armed opposition.
Syria’s Reconciliation Minister: Turkish Role in Syria ‘Very Bad’ Antoun Issa’s interview with Ali Haidar
Iran Shoots Itself in the Foot Robin Yassin-Kassab says “Iran’s backing for al-Assad is ironic because at a certain point the Syrian revolution was the one that most resembled 1979 in Iran”
Will Reversing Roles Help Turkey Avoid War in Syria? Emad Abdullah Ayasrah says there is a case of ‘reversed polarized roles’ with regards to Turkey’s official stance on Syria.
Whispers of Change in Turkey’s Syria Policy Tulin Daloglu supports that idea, suggesting that Turkey might be considering to ask the opposition to be more conciliatory with Damascus.
Turkey Angered by Petition on White House Website that asked Turkey to open its border with Armenia to allow the passage of Syrian refugees.
Au Liban Les Camps de Refugies Syriens Sont Payants The privately-owned makeshift camps at the Lebanese border are allegedly charging refugees for their accommodation.
Avant la Reunion de Paris, la Coallition Nationale Presse le Pas Ignace Leverrier provides an overview of the recent structural developments within the National Coalition.
The Syrian Dialogue Project A group of Syrians inside and outside Syria aims to create a platform to give a voice to “the silent majority” in Syria.
Moaz al-Khatib: Letter to the Christians of Syria “It is no secret that some political regimes, in their cleverness, turn sects against each other. This is usually accompanied by the enacting of special laws and the suppression of institutions. In many countries, only remnants of tired regimes and individuals who call themselves rulers remain. Hypocritical secularism dominates these regimes, which employ false piety and artificial tolerance devoid of spirit and life.”
Secret Syria Chemical Weapons Cable RevealedThe cable confirms several aspects of our original report, but also shows that the cable was less conclusive than our previous item suggested.”
Radical Elements are the True Winners in Syria’s Stalematethis threat of radicalism is slightly exaggerated by western countries, but at the same time largely underestimated by the Syrian opposition, giving way to misunderstanding of an issue that is complicating the process of finding a way out of this crisis.”
My University and my Dreams Were Destroyed in AleppoTwo explosions took hundreds of lives, ending the plans and dreams of future architects, engineers, teachers, citizens.”
Syria and the Risk of Somalisation Haian Dukhan explores the statement made by envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi
“Suryaat” BBC program on Syrian women in the Syria crisis.
The Battle for Lattakia Part 1 Karen Leigh meets with opposition fighters “waging a bloody guerilla war in the mountains that border the city”
Evolution of a Dissident Part 1&2Racan Alhoch’s personal struggle growing up with what he then understood as conflicting allegiances
Al-Qaeda Fighters Revealing Their True Colors, Rebels Say Martin Chulov in Aleppo reports that a schism developed between al-Qaeda and the FSA
Arts and Social Media
Social Media Buzz: The Attack on Aleppo University
Policy and Reports
Attacks on Religious Sites Raise Tensions Human Rights Watch researchers document the looting and vandalizing of three religious sites in the hands of the armed opposition, one Shi’a place of worship and two churches.
Syria’s Kurds: A Struggle Within a Struggle International Crisis Group’s report.
Sami Kleib writes about how geopolitical interests are playing into the current Syrian struggle and leading to a reassured Assad regime in Syria.
Recently published documentary on BBC in which six Syrian women talk about their different roles in the current Syrian struggles.
Farah Assayyed writes about the indoctrination of the Syrian youth under the Baathist regime.
Elyas Khouri writes about the need for constructive criticism of the opposition in Syria.
Samir Shishakli writes about the role of the UN in the dire situation inside Syria.
Michel Kilo presents his views on the recent news about the U.S being self-reliant in terms of the supply of energy and oil.
Loubna Zaour recounts her experience while being incarcerated in a Syrian prison.
Osama Attawil writes about France's diplomatic relations and strategies in terms of Syrian politics.
Majed Habou writes about the story of Abu Jum'a, a prison officer in the 80s in Aleppo Central Prison, and his family's political positions in terms of the current struggle.
Tarek Azizeh writes about the current Syrian impasse.
Mohammad Sayyed Rasas writes about the Syrian opposition's criticism and targeting of the National
George Haddad writes about the international geopolitics around the Syrian struggle.
Tarek AlAbed writes about the current situation in Deir Azzor.
Fayez Sarrah writes about hunger and food shortages in Syria.
Sahar Abdulla writes poems for Syria.
Basileus Zino writes about political sectarianism in the context of the Syrian revolution.
Recent Posts by Syria Page Editors
Syrian Population Regression
Population: ~ 22.5 Million
2011: 5,800+ (killed)
2012: 60,000+ (killed) and 500,000+ (external refugees)
2013: 100,000+ (killed), 2,000,000+ (external refugees), and 8 million+ displaced
Syria Map and Stats
GDP: $107.4 billion
Unemployment: 8.3%; Youth Employment (ages 15-24): 19.1%
Internet Users: 4.469 million
Exchange Rate: ~ 98.00 Syrian pounds per US dollar
GDP Growth Rate: 3.2%
Military Expenditures: 5.9% of GDP (World Rank: 10)
Health Expenditures: 2.9% of GDP (World Rank: 180)
Population Growth Rate: 0.913%
Age Structure: 0-14 years: 35.2%; 15-64 years: 61%; 65 years and over: 3.8%
Religious Demographics: Sunni Muslim 74%; other Muslim (includes Alawite, Druze) 16%; Christian (various denominations) 10%
Ethnic Demographics: Arab 90.3%, Kurds, Armenians, and other 9.7%
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