Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Shabbiha

“Diaries of Homs” by Jonathan Littell

The journalist, Jonathan Littell, filled two notebooks on what he observed and witnessed during his short 3-week stay in Homs (Jan. 16-Feb. 2, 2011), a week before the regular Syrian army entered Baba Amru and the districts in the hands of the insurgents.

The Syrian Liberation Army (SLA) of the insurgents claim that 50% of its ammunition and weapons are captured from the regular army, mostly delivered by officers on their own volition in support of the revolution.

The other half is purchased on the black market, particularly in North Lebanon with predominant Sunni people allied with the Harri clan (the Mustakbal or Future movement).

And what were the prices in early 2011:

1. RPG: $2,500, including transport

2. Missile rocket for the RPG: $650 apiece

3. Kalashnikov (Russi): $1,800. The Chinese version is cheaper

4. A mortar 60 mm: $4,500

5. Shells for this mortar: $150 apiece

6. A mortar 80 mm: $7,500

Bullets 7.62 mm for machine guns were in Israeli boxes. Every round of 5 bullets is followed by a tracer.

Dochka (little soul in Russian) is a machine gun for 12.7 mm bullets and mounted on trucks…

More important. What are the various Islamic factions and movements involved in the uprising?

1. Takfiri, Jihadist, Wahhabi radical Moslems. Considered by the Syrian insurgents as “made in the USA”, financed and supported and dispatched by Saudi Arabia

2. Djamaat al Tabligh (disseminating the message and founded in India in 1926)

3. Tahrir al Akl (Freeing the mind): Is a traditional moderate Syrian-based Sunni sect

4. The Syrian Moslem Brotherhood movement: Currently with strong links with its Turkish counterpart in power. It was linked to the Egyptian movement during Sadat and was suppressed in blood in the city of Hama by late Hafez Assad in 1982.

The Syrian Moslem Brotherhood does not exist on the ground, but mainly abroad.

The insurgents in Homs were adamantly refusing any call for Jihad, on the ground that this decision will inevitably bring in all kinds of Islamic and Arabic foreign radical Moslems to join in the uprising.

The insurgents claimed that their resistance is not based on sectarian basis, though many Sunnis hated the Shia, as a generalization for hating the Islamic Republic of Iran

The insurgents claimed that the regime’s militia (The Shabbiha) were mostly from the Alawi sect of the regime and who used to blackmail people before the uprising and steeling whatever they wished to own…

The Communists are concentrated in the Edlib district in the Djebel Zawiye region, and also in Salamiyeh between Homs and Hama.

Jonathan Littell was whisked to Homs from north Lebanon and through the town of Qusayr by many intervening links and side roads. The insurgents in Homs, particularly the SLA, were not hot about welcoming foreign journalists because they added extra stress on the fragile and nascent resistance.

Jonathan Littell paid particular attention to the three clinics he was lucky to visit and witness the kinds of wounds and civilian deaths, mostly resulting from sniper shots in the chest and the head.

Last week, two dozens of Lebanese were encouraged to go and join the Syrian insurgents. The Syrian army ambushed them in the town of “Tal Kalakh”. It is reported that all of them have been killed.

The Lebanese government position is Not to interfere or intervene in Syria’s problems, but there are many political parties and political leaders who are blatantly acting against State orders, and shipping men, arms and ammunition to the Syrian rebels…

Kidnapping, torturing and swift execution: Is that the law of the land in Syria on both sides?

So what’s the score in Syria?

The regime has recaptured Baba Amro (a suburb of Homs), entered Edlib, Deir El Zour (close to Turkey’s border)…and practically, major military operations are at an end…

The “Opposition Forces” have detonated two vehicles in front of government building in the Mazeh district (Damascus), detonated cars in Aleppo, destroyed a bridge linking the city of Dar3a to the various southern provinces…

Apparently, various factions not related to “Free Syria Army” or the other military branch led by General Mustafa Sheikh are involved in these terror tactics…

Syria’s armed opposition is highly fragmented and many militias do not appear to belong to an organised command structure or to be following SNC orders.

The Iraqi terror style is being applied to Syria, and the US and Israel are very familiar with these operations that they fined-tuned for several years in Iraq…

In the meanwhile, the people in Syria are made to suffer from famine and indignities: Prices of basic foodstuff have increased 60%, and the gas canisters for cooking and heating have more than doubled… Apparently, Greece is dispatching gas canister from a ship off-shore, in order to circumvent the “sanctions” as a gesture of humanitarian aids…

And you wonder: “Whom the US and the Western States want to save and liberate with their economic and financial sanctions? and from what?”

To make things worse, the US sends to Lebanon a Zionist in the name of David Cohen to threaten the Lebanese banks from transacting with Syrian financial institutions, just to keep rubbing it in our face…

Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported about 8,000 casualties in the year-long uprising, 10% of the casualties are of kids and women…This is a far better performance than the “collateral damage” statistics of US and Israeli operations that exceeded 60% in children and women…And they keep boasting of their “surgical operations” and “laser targeted  my ass” objectives…

Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported from the Syrian activist Mazen that an armed group led by Abu Issa in Taftanaz (by Edlib) had kidnapped Syrian civil servants and tortured them to death.

The New York-based advocacy group condemned the tactics by opposition fighters, who have long accused government troops and loyalists of carrying out similar abuses.

Sarah Leah Whitson, HRW Middle East director, said in an open letter to dissident groups including the official opposition body the Syrian National Council (SNC):

“The Syrian government’s brutal tactics cannot justify abuses by armed opposition groups…The Syrian Opposition need to make it clear that they envision a Syria that turns the page on Assad-era violations and welcomes all – regardless of their religious group or background – without discrimination.”

“Opposition leaders should make it clear to their followers that they must not torture, kidnap or execute under any circumstances,”

HRW cited dozens of YouTube videos in which Syrian security forces or their alleged supporters confessed to crimes, apparently under duress. At least 18 of the videos showed detainees who were bruised, bleeding, or suffering from other signs of physical abuse, the group said.

One video showed a man hanging by his neck from a tree in front of armed fighters, with commentary indicating he was a member of the Shabbiha, feared irregular forces loyal to Assad.

Washington said it would “absolutely denounce” human rights violations by the rebels, but said most of the abuse was being carried out by pro-Assad forces…

White House spokesman Jay Carney said: “Within the context of what’s happening in Syria, we cannot lose sight of the fact that the great preponderance of violence against civilians and innocent people is being perpetrated by forces under the control of the Assad regime…” (Nothing new here emanating from Washington)

Nada Darwish urged the various media, used by the opposition (inside Syria), to circumvent State monopoly on news and the dissemination of information. For example, more than 10 electronic dailies have been circulating. One of them, “Oxygen” was closed as the army entered the city of Zabadani; “News of an infiltrators” stopped as its initiators were caught…

The remaining electronic dailies are “We want to speak and say our opinions”, “In all freedom, non adulterated expressions”, “What we say is our opinion, as Syrians first of all”, “Liberty”, “Syria wants freedom”, “The alternative”, “Our Syria”, “Country grapes“… A few hard copies of these daily news are distributed in different provinces.

The Syrian daily “Our Syria” (Suriatuna), with editor-in -chief Fouad Kobeissi, published a special issue of 44 pages under the major title “The revolution of dignity on its first anniversary: “We won’t be but Free”” contained op-ed of many authors such as Fares Ba7rat, Khoulud Zaghir, Muhammad Dibo, Mahmoud Mahmoud, Ninar Hassan…

Moussa Abd Hak, editor of the daily “Country Grapes” (3enab Baladi) has resumed publishing this daily from the city of Daria in January 19, 2011.

Note: On other eye-witness accounts




March 2023

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