Recent Headlines from Syria: A General Strike and Boycott

Posted: December 12, 2011 in International
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The American journalist Barbara Walters was, at the invitation of the President, for a few days in Damascus, Syria. There, she was convinced against her previous information and contrary to the reports of Damascus, that all was calm in the capital.

She walked unaccompanied through the streets of Damascus and without any sign of security forces or intelligence officials. She was there, seeing with her own eyes, the situation in Damascus rather than relying on the shaky cell phone videos and reports of the questionable Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (London) which so many believe.

Syria is again on the agenda of the UN Security Council with regards to the alleged continuing brutality of the security forces. None of the UN representatives are on the ground in Syria and hence are not getting the picture.


The head of the UN Commission on Human Rights, Pillay, will report again in a closed session on the situation in Syria. It is extremely unlikely that she will say anything further than that of her most recent evaluation of a survey where approximately 220 people who fled from Syria were interviewed.

Her reasoning and conclusions are based on statements from people outside of Syria as well as accounts from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights in London – a one-man show finally.

Pillay, who was not even in Syria, has in fact described the situation there, pretending to take information from sources, which certainly cannot be classified as credible, so as to condemn the nation and government.

Calls to let an observer delegation into the country were refused by Assad, according to Pillay. She did not refer to the press conferences or the negotiations that have been taking place between Syria and the Arab League as well as to the interview with Barbara Walters in order to verify her claims.

In Assad’s interview, he reiterated that observers can come into the county but there will be conditions. Syria sent a response to the Arab League with a list of conditions and changes. These include, among others that the movement of the observers must be coordinated with the Syrian authorities.

This does not mean that Syria will fully control the observers. It means that their safety will be protected. In the interview with Walters, Bashar al-Assad agreed to observers but Ms. Pillay seems not to have seen the interview, or simply ignored its contents.

Even when the UN Security Council encountered particular pressure from France, Germany and Great Britain to work on a possible resolution against Syria, it was thought that this would not progress any further than the October session.

Russia and China both vetoed it. Some other states spoke out against the resolution or at least abstained. Nevertheless, despite this, the UN firmly pushes on in order to achieve its goal of removing Assad. Only then will they be satisfied, no matter the consequences for Syria’s future.

Yesterday’s “Strike for Dignity” in Syria, organized by the opposition, was exploited by the Western media. The media jumped to illustrate that there were strikes all over the country. Choosing to have this strike on a Sunday was a cynical move by the opposition as many shops owned by Christians are closed as they are in Europe and other Western countries. It is hard to find media reports about the threats made against those shops that wouldn’t close.

The media coverage in Europe is still very one-sided, designed to ensure popular support for an alleged liberation struggle of Syrians. However, the majority of Syrians are speaking out against outside interference and about the already extensive damage from this interference. But this interference goes on and accusations will be made of the manipulation of free speech and the rigging of elections in Syria.

Today, local elections are planned in Syria. The advertising and the call to participate in the elections has taken place on the TV and radio stations. Advertising for individual MPs was carried out as usual on posters and banners in the streets.

There were fewer than in previous elections over the years. The so-called opposition abroad and their supporters in Syria called for a boycott of the elections. Before the commencement of the Election Day they announced to some journalists, without any proof, that already full ballot boxes had been transported to the polling sites. Well one must prepare the news before it happens!

It is purely Western propaganda to announce that the elections are taking place in the midst of a civil war. The country is stable and most areas are quiet. In regions where there are still problems the Army is providing protection for the citizens.

The story is totally different to that in the European media, the Army does not shoot at civilians but it warns of and protects against dangerous situations in the streets. The European media reports of armed men but they hardly deserve that description.

These gunmen are not heroes who defend themselves against the brutality of the government; they are there causing great unrest and insecurity.

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