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Found 9 results

  1. Israeli defense minister met with Syrian rebels, former IDF commander reveals in a first In a bombshell admission, a former senior Israeli commander has said that former Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon personally met with Syrian rebels at the height of the Syrian war. Maj. Gen. Gershon Hacohen was speaking at an Israeli Democracy Institute conference when he made a stunning claim – Ya'alon, who was Israel's chief of defense from 2013 to May 2016, held a meeting with a group of Syrian rebels during his tenure. Hacohen, who was Israeli Defence Forces Staff Corps Commander before retiring in September 2014, said that he was also present at the never-before-reported meet-up. Hacohen refused to specify when the meeting took place and or the subject matter of the discussions. He, however, offered a brief portrayal of his three Syrian 'counterparts,' saying that Ya'alon asked one if he was a Salafist because the minister "wanted to understand who they were." The rebel Ya'alon addressed was apparently somewhat perturbed by the prospect of cooperation with Israel. "He [Ya'alon] asked one of them, 'Tell me, are you a Salafist?' And he said, 'I really don't know what a Salafist is. If it means that I pray more, then yes. Once I would pray once a week, on Fridays, now I pray five times a day. On the other hand, a Salafist isn't meant to cooperate with the Zionists," Haaretz reported, citing Hacohen's recollection of the meeting. Following Hacohen's revelation, the Jerusalem Post reported, citing its own sources, that the meeting did indeed take place and that the main topic on the agenda was “humanitarian assistance.” The JP's sources said the outcome of the talks was an agreement on humanitarian aid deliveries to the residents of the Syrian part of the Golan Heights. The effort, which reportedly started as a one-time goodwill gesture, expanded to become Operation Good Neighbor, which formally inaugurated its headquarters in June 2016. Since then, Israel has been openly assisting the rebels, but insists that its assistance is strictly humanitarian and includes treating wounded militants and their families, supplying them with fuel, medicine, food, clothing and other essential products. The operation was reportedly wrapped up this week after Syrian forces retook control over the Golan Heights from the rebels. However, numerous reports have suggested that Israel's support of the rebels is not as benign as Tel Aviv seeks to portray. The Wall Street Journal reported last year that the alleged humanitarian assistance, that had begun as early as 2013, included cash payments to rebel commanders who, in turn, used the money to pay militants' salaries and buy weapons and equipment. It was reported that one group received a monthly allowance of some $5,000 from the Israeli military. The handouts were conditional upon the rebels' ability to keep Hezbollah, which Israel sees as Iran's proxies, away from the border. Earlier this year, the Jerusalem Post was forced to hastily remove an explosive report on the IDF’s admission that it provided Syrian rebels with light weapons. The managing editor of the newspaper told RT in September that the story was taken down for "for security reasons evidently," while the IDF declined to comment on the issue. ISRAEL DEFENSE MINISTER MET SYRIAN REBELS
  2. The ‘Revolutionary’ Face of the Syrian Conflict Reports are abound by international organizations about the responsibility of the Syrian government for the human rights violations in the ongoing conflict in Syria, now in its fourth year, but the responsibility of the insurgents has been kept away from media spotlight for political reasons. However, the horrible image of the “revolutionary” performance imposed itself on the media and public opinion to an extent that it has become impossible to black it out anymore. Internationally last Thursday, for example, the U.S. envoy to the United Nations, Samantha Power, said that Russia’s and China’s vetoes against a United Nations Security Council resolution to refer allegations of war crimes in Syria to the International Criminal Court (ICC) “protect monstrous terrorist organizations operating in Syria … who are pursuing a fundamentalist assault on the Syrian people that knows no decency or humanity.” Regionally on the same day, The Yemeni Coordination Committee for the Support of Syrian Revolution dissolved itself in protest against what it called in a statement “the diversion and transformation of the leaders of the revolution and opposition into terrorist gangs and groups.” Since U.S. President Barak Obama imposed sanctions on April 29, 2011 on some Syrian officials reportedly accused of using violence against civilians, the U.S., European and regional sponsors of a “regime change” in the country have so far held the Syrian government as the only party accountable. The UN and western international human rights organizations followed suit. Their blackout of the insurgents’ responsibility could not be avoided otherwise those sponsors would be held accountable as well and consequently could not continue their support to the insurgents with impunity, because without their support the insurgents would not have survived. Their reluctance to arm the Syrian rebels with advanced weapons lest they fall into the hands of the terrorist organizations could not cover up their initial and ongoing arming and recruitment efforts, which empowered the militarization of the peaceful civilian protests with its most extreme Syrian and non-Syrian insurgents. On last April 8, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay was quoted as saying in a briefing to the UN Security Council that the actions of the forces of the Syrian government “far outweigh” the crimes by the “opposition” fighters. Statistics Tell a Different Story However, scrutiny of the statistics of the death toll and the facts of the humanitarian fallout of the conflict tell a different story. On this May 19, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said it had documented more than 162,000 deaths in the conflict until this May 17, more than 61 thousand of them were government troops, 42,701 rebels and more than 1600 foreign fighters; SOHR believes that both sides of the combat strongly tend to be very conservative about their human casualties. The rest were civilians many of whom were victims of suicide bombing and mortar shells fired by the rebels. The breakdown of these figures show the government a victim rather than a culprit and indicate that the actions of the rebels “far outweigh” those of the government, contrary to Navi Pillay’s conclusion. “Questioning the Syrian ‘Casualty List’” in the Lebanese Alakhbar on February 28, 2012, Sharmine Narwani documented that, “The very first incident of casualties from the Syrian regular army that I could verify dates to 10 April 2011, when gunmen shot up a bus of soldiers travelling through Banyas, in Tartous, killing nine,” i.e. few weeks after the first peaceful protests broke out in Syria, a fact which questions the now wrongfully accepted public knowledge that the government was the party who initiated the “violence.” The communiqué issued by the eleven western and Arab foreign ministers of the core group of the so-called “Friends of Syria” after their meeting in London on this May 15 was the latest example of the political motives behind the blackout, which they have imposed for too long on the insurgents’ responsibility. They called the upcoming presidential elections on next June 3 “illegitimate” and a “parody of democracy,” ignoring the fact that any power vacuum in Syria would only create the right environment for the collapse of the central government. The inevitable result would be an exacerbation of the humanitarian crisis in the country, rendering their humanitarian rhetoric a parody of humanity. Worse still, the eleven “Friends of Syria” had “agreed unanimously” to boost their support to what they described as “the moderate opposition National Coalition (SNC), its Supreme Military Council and associated moderate armed groups.” What “moderates” did they refer to? On last September 25 the BBC quoted a recent study published by IHS Jane’s analyst Charles Lister, which concluded that, “the core of the Syrian insurgency is composed of Islamist groups of one kind or another.” “The armed opposition is all too much a part of the conflict,” Red Maistre wrote in The Northern Star four days later. Three years and three months on, the “Friends of Syria” failed to bring the “regime” down. On the contrary, it has got the military upper hand, while the organizations which the U.S. and Saudi Arabia had listed as terrorists got the upper hand in the rebel-held areas. Whatever military supplies the “moderate” rebels could get will only prolong the war, postpone any political settlement and perpetuate and exacerbate the worsening humanitarian crisis. Civilian protesters, political opposition and “secular” armed rebels were hijacked, sidelined and finally dumped by the mainstream terrorists, whose backbone consists of “foreign fighters,” thus dooming any political solution for a long time to come and vindicating Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s determination on last August 4 that, “No solution can be reached with terror except by striking it with an iron fist.” As early as March 2012 Sara Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, had warned that, ““The Syrian government’s brutal tactics cannot justify abuses by armed opposition groups.” Schools, universities, hospitals, health clinics, churches, mosques, religious monuments, power grids, railways, bridges, oil fields, historical sites, museum assets, police symbols of public safety and order and other infrastructure were targeted by the rebels with unprecedented level of destruction and civilian plight. A survey, conducted by the Relief and Works Agency of UN’s Microfinance Programs and released early last April, said it would take 30 years for the Syrian economy to recover to its 2010 level. According to the SOHR, the infighting among rebels has claimed more than five thousand casualties in 2014. The infighting over border crossings and oil fields displaced more than one hundred thousand civilians in north eastern Syria during the past month. As a strategy, the rebels since the very beginning have been using Syrian civilians en masse as a bargaining chip and as human shields, a fact which the “Friends of Syria” have been keen to blackout. On this May 12, rebels have agreed to free 1,500 families whom they had kidnapped and held hostages in Adra, a suburb of the capital Damascus, for the release of rebels jailed by the government. Two weeks ago they freed some one hundred infants, children and elderly men and women in exchange for evacuating the Old City of Homs unharmed. On May 4, they cut off water supply to some three million civilians in Syria’s second largest city of Aleppo, a collective punishment reminiscent of a similar horrible practice by Israel in Beirut in 1982. Last month the rebels cut off the electricity supply. For less than two years now they have been bombarding the western side of the city, which is under government control, with mortar shells and turning the civilian life there into a nightmare of suicide and tunnel bombings from the eastern side, which they control. Rule, Not Exception These inhuman tactics are not the exception, but the norm and rule. Since the very beginning of their rebellion in March 2011, rebels stormed into Syrian city centers, where there was no official military presence, and used the civilian population as human shields against any retaliation by the government forces, thus unleashing what the United Nations described as the world’s largest refugee problem. Civilians have paid the higher price. Syrians now hold the rebels responsible for their plight. Their sectarian public incubator has already turned against them in favour of restoring the missing safety, security and order by the government. All factions of the rebels claim they are the representatives of the Muslim Sunni majority, but the overwhelming majority of some six million Syrians who are displaced internally are Sunnis, now hosted by non-Sunni compatriots in safe havens under government protection, let alone more than three million refugees who are also overwhelmingly Sunni Syrians and fled to neighbouring countries from the areas held by the rebels. It’s a well-known fact now that creating a humanitarian crisis in Syria, whether real or fabricated, and holding the Syrian government responsible for it as a casus belli for foreign military intervention under the UN 2005 so-called “responsibility to protect” initiative was from the very beginning of the Syrian conflict the goal of the U.S.-led so-called “Friends of Syria’ coalition. A second fact was the rush to militarize the Syrian civilian peaceful protests. When President al-Assad issued in 2011 the first of his six general amnesties, former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton went on record with a public appeal to armed rebels not to lay down their arms in response. In March 2014 a commission of inquiry mandated by the United Nations Human Rights Council, chaired by Paulo Pinheiro, for the first time accused the insurgents in Syria of “crimes against humanity” and “war crimes.” On this May 14, Syrian Rev. Michael Rabaheih, from the Greek Orthodox Church, was quoted by The Washington Post as saying: “If this is freedom, we don’t need it.” Rabaheih was one of some 80,000 Christians who returned to the Old City of Homs, which the opposition once proudly called “the capital of the revolution,” but which the rebels were forced to evacuate this month. He was seated next to the grave of the Dutch priest, Frans van der Lugt, who was assassinated by the rebels a few weeks earlier, not far from the gravely damaged historic Khalid ibn al-Walid mosque in the devastated neighbourhoods of Syria’s third largest city, where “little was left.” Obviously, the “Friends of Syria” have failed to artificially create any credible alternative http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/05/23/the-revolutionary-face-of-the-syrian-conflict/
  3. RT sources: Syrian rebels plan chem attack on Israel from Assad-controlled territories Published time: September 09, 2013 15:59 Edited time: September 10, 2013 12:58 http://rt.com/files/news/20/60/a0/00/syria-chemical-israel-slier-2100.mp4 A chemical attack may be launched on Israel by Syrian rebels from government-controlled territories as a "major provocation," multiple sources told RT. Follow RT's LIVE UPDATES for the latest on Syria The report comes as Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov proposed that Syria puts its chemical weapons arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction in order to prevent a possible military strike against the war-torn country. Moscow also urged Syrian authorities to join the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. The offer has already been passed over to Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem, who met Lavrov in Moscow for talks on Monday. “We don’t know if Syria will accept the offer, but if imposing international control over chemical weapons stored in the country can help to avoid military strikes, we are immediately going to start working with Damascus,” Lavrov said. The Syrian Foreign Ministry has welcomed Moscow's initiative, “based on the Syrian’s government care about the lives of our people and security of our country,” Muallem said later on Monday. Meanwhile, US National Security Adviser Susan Rice made a statement saying that Damascus' alleged "use of chemical weapons against its own people" posed a threat to US national security. “The use of chemical weapons also directly threatens our closest ally in the region, Israel,” she said, speaking at the New America Foundation in Washington. The statement was made shortly after RT published a report about the possibility of a chemical provocation. A few hours earlier, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that to avoid a military operation, Syrian President Bashar Assad has a week to surrender control of “every single bit” of his stock of chemical weapons to the international community. “But he isn't about to do it and it can't be done,” he added, speaking at a media conference in London as he wrapped up his European tour in a move to garner support for the Obama-proposed “limited” strike against Syria. The US Administration has blamed the Syrian government for the alleged chemical weapons attack in the Damascus suburbs on August 21. Washington has maintained it has the intelligence to prove it, but has so far refused to make public a single piece of concrete evidence that would link the Assad regime to the deadly incident. On Sunday, the Senate Select Intelligence Committee released a series of 13 videos showing what is purported to be proof of chemical weapons use in Syria. The disturbing images of the victims of the alleged attack were earlier shown during a closed-door briefing to a group of senators, as Obama is trying to get authorization from Congress for the military strike on Syria. The administration told senators that the authenticity of the videos was verified by the intelligence community, reported CNN, which first aired the graphic material. The videos depict scenes of convulsing children, men vomiting and struggling to breathe, and also what appeared to be dozens of dead bodies wrapped up in white sheets, lying side by side. But the footage still does not provide an answer to the question of who was behind the attack. The Syrian government and the opposition forces point the finger of blame at each other. It also remains unclear as to why exactly President Assad would order a chemical attack at a time when a group of UN experts were carrying out an investigation in the country. There is proof the footage of the alleged chemical attack in Syria was fabricated, Mother Agnes Mariam el-Salib, mother superior of the St. James Monastery in Qara, Syria, told RT. She added that she plans to submit her findings to the UN. Source: http://rt.com/news/syria-rebels-chemical-attack-israel-618/
  4. “They were very fierce fighters. You would shoot at them but they kept on coming. They wore headbands with 'O Hussein’ written on them,” says Mr. Attar, referring to the grandson of the prophet Muhammad and a revered figure in Shiite Islam. Khaled, a slim fighter from Qusayr with a spade-like beard and cropped hair, says he captured a 15-year-old Lebanese Shiite. “He wore a headband inscribed with 'martyrdom is the key to heaven.' I asked him why he has fighting in Qusayr. He said that he was waging jihad,” Khaled says. What did he do with the boy? “I killed him, of course,” Khaled says with a chuckle. It was impossible to verify his story, although Hezbollah does not permit men below the age of 18 to serve in a combat role. The battle for Qusayr and Hezbollah's intervention in the Syria war has left upon the rebel fighters an indelible imprint of fury and bitterness toward the Lebanese group and a burning desire for revenge that even dwarfs their hostility toward the Assad regime, which is dominated by members of the Alawite sect, an offshoot of Shiite Islam. The rebels refer to Hezbollah as the "Party of the Devil," a play on the group's name which means "Party of God" in Arabic. “We will never make peace with Hezbollah,” says Abu Mohammed. “We will never forgive nor forget. They have killed our people. Even after Assad is gone, we will continue to go after the Party of the Devil. I would release four Alawite prisoners for the pleasure of killing one Shiite. They will remain our enemy forever.” http://news.yahoo.com/syrian-rebels-cling-enclave-eastern-lebanon-160400969.html;_ylt=Av9qWwNouKtQv8KpaIljb3MC9nQA;_ylu=X3oDMTVxdnFxM3A4BGNjb2RlA2dtcHRvcDEwMDBwb29sd2lraXVwcmVzdARtaXQDQXJ0aWNsZSBNaXhlZCBMaXN0IE5ld3MgZm9yIFlvdSB3aXRoIE1vcmUgTGluawRwa2cDMmE2NmU3MTAtNDIwYS0zOGFhLTg5OTktM2ZlMTczYzg3N2U0BHBvcwM1BHNlYwNuZXdzX2Zvcl95b3UEdmVyA2VhMDJiZTQ1LWQ4MzktMTFlMi1iYmZjLWQzZjQ5OTM5NTdhNQ--;_ylg=X3oDMTNrYTBtNXJrBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDM2Q4YmExZDItMzUzZS0zODdiLWE4YTYtYjRhZWY1NTBjMmJlBHBzdGNhdAN3b3JsZHxtaWRkbGVlYXN0BHB0A3N0b3J5cGFnZQR0ZXN0A3NjcmVlbl90ZXN0;_ylv=3
  5. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-22870776 "The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said at least 60 people died in Hatla on Tuesday. The attack appeared to be retaliation for a raid on a rebel position by people from the village, it added. Meanwhile, a government helicopter has reportedly fired three missiles at the northern Lebanese border town of Arsal. Lebanese security officials said one of the missiles had struck the town centre. One told the AFP news agency several people were wounded. Arsal is a predominantly Sunni town about 15km (9 miles) from the Syrian border that is home to some 27,000 Syrian refugees. It is not far from the strategically important Syrian town of Qusair, which was recaptured by the army last week with help from fighters from the Lebanese Shia Islamist movement, Hezbollah......."
  6. Salam everyone :D After the big success of last Ramadan series "UMAR", how do u like a movie (Bollywood style) that tells the story of corruption, rebellion, palace siege and execution? Would it make a true story or fitna story? Your different opinions are needed, but nobody tells us it's not relevant today with all the Arab springs rising around, seriously!!
  7. Sham Times: Syrian rebels threaten to destroy Armenian districts August 24, 2012 - 17:32 AMT PanARMENIAN.Net - Supreme Council of the Syrian Revolution (SCSR) has threatened to destroy Syria’s Armenian districts, Sham Times reported. The source has pointed to Turkey behind the threats, as advocate of rebels’ plans to attack Syrian Armenians. In its statement SCSR accused Armenians of “cooperation with Bashar al-Assad forces and involvement in actions having caused deaths.”
  8. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/01/27/us-syria-opposition-rebels-idUSTRE80Q0S320120127 'She said the rebels numbered between 20,000 and 30,000 in Syria and about 300 in neighboring Turkey. "They need communications equipment, bullet-proof vests and non-offensive equipment to make sure they are integrated with each other. If they are left isolated, they will transform into militias.'
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