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September 2012 Reference List

September 2, 2012

There is a dearth of information and serious analyses in regard to Syria presented in the Australian mainstream media.  Therefore, to develop an understanding of the crisis and to participate in efforts for peace, it is vital that people do the hard research.  This website is one tool that can be used in that task.

Most of the images of Syrian people presented on this page are from Syrian TV, August and September 2012.  The images chosen are mostly ones of people attempting to lead a normal life. The photos of ‘rebels’ and refugees usually presented in the media tend to distance the experience of people in Syria from that of people a world away leading peaceful suburban lives.  They should be seen because it is necessary to know there is a war and suffering in order to try and stop it.  However, empathy for others may depend to some extend on Mirror neurons , as described in an ABC radio program. In other words, for us to feel real empathy for Syrians today, it helps to see the people of Syria in circumstances we can relate to; the more familiar the gesture, the smile, the glance or simple shrug, the easier it may be to feel an understanding for that person and their story and to want to do all we possibly can to bring peace and stability back into their world – their world is our world, after all.

Many of the people whose images you see on this blog are speaking about anything else but war. Hope can be retained if normality is remembered … for it to be regained.

NB: there are also links to articles or reports prior to September 2012 which remain relevant and deserve attention.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow includes images of a reciter of the Quran, people interviewed in the street, actors from a Syrian TV drama, Fairuz (the Lebanese diva and perhaps the most popular singer in Syria), and news presenters from satellite TV.

An up-to-date look at the Christian response to the crisis in Syria

A priest in Aleppo (September 6, 2012) has spoken out against the US Administration’s support of the ‘rebels’ in Syria.  In his videoed speech, he refers to the words of Barak Obama’s former preacher, Rev Wright and his “God damn America” sermon.

The priest supports the views expressed by Mother Agnes Mariam on Irish radio (RTE).  They both speak of the terror in Syria inflicted not just against Christians, but also against ‘moderate’ Muslims, which would include millions of Alawi and Sunni Syrians.

They criticize the western media’s reporting on Syria as it allows the terror to continue.

For example, few people in the west would realize that tens of thousands of Christians were targeted in Homs by Islamist fighters and forced to flee, often unable to take anything with them.  

Also, in January 2012, Father Basil Nassar was shot and killed by armed men in Hama in January 2012.  Although he was killed by armed men, a photo of Fr. Nassar was held up by a young boy at a Melbourne rally organized by people who support the armed opposition to the Syrian government; there was the clear intention to mislead the public about Father Nassar’s murder. Those at the rally could do this as the Australian media does not inform us about such events when they occur.    

Beyond the internet, there is virtually no mainstream public forum for serious debate or discussion on Syria while the efforts to censor  Syrian media outlets continue.

Note, the views of the Aleppo priest and Mother Agnes do not correspond with those of the Italian Jesuit priest, Father Paolo Dall’Oglio who is travelling the world meeting western politicians, religious figures and media to put the case for the ‘rebel’ fighters in Syria.  He is quoted by those who support the armed fight against secular Syria; he is not quoted by those who support peace, dialogue and reconciliation.

To suggest that Christians have always supported the ‘regime’ out of fear for their fate if it is replaced by a non-secular state skews the reality.  As Rev Awad  and the Archbishop of Aleppo  have explained, Christians have been voices of dissent for many years.  Mother Agnes  also makes it clear that many Christians work hard for peace and justice, and this can mean they have stood  in opposition to the government.

According to the Patriarch of the Syriac Catholic Church in Beirut, Ignatius Ephrem Joseph III,  the West’s attitude to the Syrian conflict was described as “hypocrisy” and sharply criticised: “For many governments it’s merely a matter of economic interests.”

While Lebanon’s Maronite Christian Patriarch , Patriarch Bishara Rai,  draws a distinction between supporting a ‘regime’ and supporting the state.

Note, Christians in Syria have been reluctant to focus on their suffering in Syria, one reason being the fear that drawing attention to religion can only fuel sectarian violence.  Also, Christians are not the only targets of Islamist extremists. As mentioned above, Moderate  Alawi and Sunni Muslims are also targeted by extremist clerics who call for blood. Sheik Qaradawi, the Muslim  Brotherhood cleric based in Qatar who issued a fatwa against Syria  in March 2011, has declared on Al-Jazeera that “it is ok if 1/3 of the population of Syria is killed if it leads to the toppling of the  heretical Syrian regime”.  Note: the majority of that government are Sunni Muslims as is the majority of Syrian people, but unlike most militia members they are not Wahhabi, Takfiri or Salafi jihadists.

What do Australians know about the views of the clerics who target secular Syria?  Not just for the sake of the people of Syria, but also for our own people and peace in Australia, we should be better informed: Qaradawi on Christmas .  Qaradawi on Hitler and the Jewish people.  Qaradawi on the dangers of female masturbation. There are more links to Qaradawi in an Andrew McCarthy December 2011 National Review Online article which refers to the US Administration calling on Qaradawi to be the middle man in talks with the Taliban. 

If people fear that condemning extremist clerics and Islamist fighters is a condemnation of Islam the religion, there would be 100s of millions of  peace-loving Muslims who could assure them this is not the case. The victims of their terror in Bali, London, NY, Iraq, Afghanistan and many other places would support such a condemnation.  However, as John Pilger writes, there must be condemnation of the ‘liberalism’ which supports the crimes of Islamist terrorists in Syria and which censors the news and discussion of it.

The fact that mainstream media reports on Syria rarely present the point of view of people affected by the terror in Syria means that many  Australians, including those from Christian and Muslim communities, accept the simple, dangerous narrative that has dominated in the media: “the president is a brutal dictator killing his own people and he is the head of an Alawi regime which oppresses the Sunni people”.  Even Amnesty International is implicated in the continuing terror in Syria as it adopted the narrative at the beginning of the crisis in Syria and it sticks to it no matter what evidence presented refutes it.  In Syria, people are losing their lives because they have tried to tell the truth about the terror or because they have worked for peaceful reform or their family members support peaceful reform, evolution not “revolution.  But this is not the case in Australia. People in the media or in government should have no such fears.  Why is there so little truth being disseminated when the lives of millions depend on it?


Egypt satellite company to stop Syrian state TV broadcast

Published Wednesday, September 5, 2012


Syria and Us (Part II)

By: Ibrahim al-Amin

Published Sunday, August 19, 2012

Of all the Arab and neighboring states, Lebanon and the Palestinian people will remain the most affected by the Syrian crisis…..


Press TV

Egypt still follows some Mubarak-era policies: Analyst

5 September 2012



Robert Fisk: In Maaloula, the past has relevance to Syria’s tragic present

3 September


It has often been often alleged in Australian mainstream media that ‘rebels’ in Syria are supporting the Sunni majority against an ‘Alawi’ regime.  What is ignored is the fact that the vast majority of Syrian politicians, including ministers, are not Alawi and that Syria is a secular country, so the religion of ministers would be, in theory at least, irrelevant in a country which works hard to avoid the lethal mix of politics and religion.

Al- Zoubi: Syria Facing Massive Conspiracy and Terrorist, Extremist Mentality… Solution is Purely Syrian

4 September 2012

DAMASCUS, (SANA) – Information Minister Omran al- Zoubi said that what is happening in Syria is a massive conspiracy and an aggression using barbaric tools whose elements are obvious, stressing that Syria is facing a terrorist, Wahabi and Takfiri mentality and an extremist culture in various guises and under various names…

Syria 360


Information Ministry: Qatari, French Experts Set up Devices in North Lebanon to Jam Syrian Satellite Channels Broadcast

The Information Ministry said that a group of Qatari and French experts are setting up devices and mobile stations in Wadi Khaled and Akroum Mountain in North Lebanon to jam the broadcast of the Syrian satellite channels and wiretap communications in Lebanon and Syria.

The Ministry said that the Qatari intelligence intends to set up satellite broadcasting devices in North Lebanon to be used by the armed terrorist groups, adding that French technical experts have started execution. The Ministry said that the stations are connected to communication devices connected with communication bases north of the occupied Palestine.



The WikiLeaks Discussion Forum:

Julian Assange interviews Hassan Nasrallah, April 17 2012

Nasrallah: They Want Syria to Change into a Country of Renunciation

4 September 2012

Hezbollah leader Nasrallah calls for dialogue in Syria

4 September 2012

Hezbollah Secretary General Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah says “political settlement and dialogue” between the Syrian government and opposition is the rational solution to the Syrian crisis.


Hassan Nasrallah was interviewed by Ghassan Bin Jeddo, former Al-Jazeera Beirut office head who resigned from Al-Jazeera in protest in April 2011 over its presentation of the ‘Arab Spring’, particularly in regard to news on Bahrain and Syria.  He interviewed Nasrallah on Lebanon’s Al Mayadeen TV.

France 24

‘Anti-Al Jazeera’ channel Al Mayadeen goes on air  12/6/2012

…….Ali Hashem, another journalist who quit Al Jazeera to join Al Mayadeen, made headlines in Lebanon in March when he vented his anger over the one-sided coverage of Syria on Al Jazeera in several emails, which were leaked by Syrian hackers.

In his emails, Hashem criticized the Qatar-based channel for refusing to cover the anti-regime uprising in Bahrain, a Shiite majority Arab country ruled by a Sunni monarch.

“I felt in one way or another, I am losing my integrity as a journalist, being pushed to lie. It’s the owners of Al Jazeera, those who own Al Jazeera, the Qataris. They are pushing this channel toward journalistic suicide,” said Hashim in an interview with FRANCE 24…….



An analysis in The Guardian by Charlie Skelton (featured previously on this blog)

The Syrian opposition: who’s doing the talking?  12 JULY 2012


Bloomberg News

Anti-Assad Figure Resigns Citing Syria Opposition Discord

By Flavia Krause-Jackson on August 28, 2012

Bassma Kodmani, a prominent voice of the Syrian National Council, resigned from the main political opposition body to President Bashar al-Assad, citing disappointment in the group’s failure to work together more than 17 months after the uprising began.


George Sabra: A man for all seasons?

9 April 2012 by Malik Al-Abdeh, Former chief editor of Barada TV (Charlie Skelton: “According to the Washington Post’s report: “Barada TV is closely affiliated with the Movement for Justice and Development, a London-based network of Syrian exiles. Classified US diplomatic cables show that the state department has funnelled as much as $6m to the group since 2006 to operate the satellite channel and finance other activities inside Syria.””)

See  photo on a Facebook page of George Sabra meeting Adnan Arour, the notorious extremist cleric based in Saudi Arabia.  If it is genuine, it raises even more very worrying questions about the external Syrian ‘opposition’.

An alternative “man for all seasons”: a Syrian elder in the Syrian Australian community:



Robert Fisk: Syria’s road from jihad to prison

For the first time, a Western journalist has been granted access to Assad’s military prisoners  2 September 2012

Mohamed Amin Ali al-Abdullah was a 26-year-old fourth-year medical student from the northern Syrian city of Deir el-Zour. The son of a “simple” farming family in Latakia, he sat in the governor’s brown leather chair in a neat striped blue shirt and trousers – given to him, he said, by the authorities – and told us he had encountered “psychological problems” in his second year. He twice broke down in tears while he spoke. He said he had followed medical advice as a student but also accepted psychological help from a “sheikh” who suggested he read specific texts from the Koran.

“This was a kind of entrance to my personality and from time to time the second man gave me disks about the Salafist cause, mostly of speeches by Saudi sheikhs such as Ibn Baz and Ibn Ottaimin. Later, he gave me videos that rejected all other sects in Islam, attacking the Sufis, attacking the Shia.” The “sheikh” was imprisoned for a year but later joined Mohamed as a roommate in Damascus. “Then he used to show me videos of operations by jihadi people against Nato and the Americans in Afghanistan.”


Manufacturing Dissent

31 August 2012  A documentary about Syria

Media Conspiracy against Syria: Lizzie Phelan

Interview with one of the makers of “Manufacturing Dissent” (Both transcript and video available on page.)

Alaa Ebrahim (Syrian Presenter) — What are the main points of view that you will be raising in this documentary?

(Lizzie Phelan) — The main point is to basically deconstruct the main fabrications that have been put forward by the global media, mainly the western media and channels, particularly Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya. And these fabrications are that the army is on a mass systematic scale killing peaceful protesters, that there is no democracy in Syria, that there is no respect for human rights and that there is no support for President Bashar Al-Assad. So the documentary deals with all of these fabrications and in effect shows that in many of the cases they are complete and outright lies….


Syria TV News 2.9.2012: Robert Fisk visited Syrian jail, Qatari airplane smuggle telecommunications; US and Wahhabi ‘freedom fighters’; detainees released; protest in Turkey


George Galloway responds to a question from a member of an audience who supports the ‘revolution’ and fight for ‘freedom’ in Syria

(published on Youtube 1 September 2012)

Al Mayadeen TV channel with British Member of Parliament George Galloway speaks the truth about what is called Syrian Revolution and its supporters. He answered Question from Lebanese Tayyar AL mustakbal representative who supports NON Muslim Brotherhood terrorists in Syria….

NB: Alastair Crooke’s assessment of the ‘revolution’.


Robert Fisk: Another week in the violent, murderous and divided world of Syria


Christians and Armenians among latest to die


Syrian rebels give airlines ’72-hour warning’ before they plan to seize civilian airports 1 September 2012

The Free Syrian Army (FSA) gave a 72-hour advance warning to airlines to suspend flights to Syria before the rebels try to seize civilian airports in Damascus and Aleppo. They claim the Syrian Air Force is using them ‘illegally.’

­The 72-hour period begins on Saturday, September 1, the FSA told Asharq Al-Awsat, the major pan-Arab daily newspaper based in London.
The FSA believes that Syria’s civilian airports are being used to support pro-regime military operations…. International law prohibits attacks on civilian airports, whether during internal conflicts or wars between states. Prior to the FSA’s ultimatum, some international companies already cancelled flights to Syria over security and cost concerns.

RT interview with Syria Tribune Editor-in-Chief, Ali Mohammad, about the foreign rebel warning and the support for the ‘rebels’

1 Sept 2012

Global Research

NATO Terrorists to Target Syria’s Civilian Airports By Tony Cartalucci

Global Research, September 01, 2012

Land Destroyer


US, Certain Regional States Dispatching Al-Qaeda Elements from Yemen to Syria  2 September 2012

TEHRAN (FNA)- One of al-Qaeda ringleaders in Yemen disclosed that the US and certain regional states plan to dispatch al-Qaeda terrorists from Yemen to Syria to help their counterparts intensify attacks against the Syrian people.


Although these reports are from August, the concerns are on-going and demand attention.

French & US Intelligence Chemical Weapons False Flag in Syria Exposed uploaded 28 August 2012

A meeting between Al Arabiya news channel manager with a US diplomat then with French & US intelligence plan to use chemical weapons on Syrians and accuse the Syrian Army for it, the long anticipated, exposed, consumed False Flag.. 

A Saudi company has already arranged for 1,400 ambulance cars equipped with chemical & poisonous gas filtering system for swift military intervention when needed..!

A public spontaneous revolution or a NATO covert & overt military intervention with NATO mainstream media coverage?! You decide.

Chemical Weapons False Flag against Syria

Uploaded 3 August 2012 by SyriaGirlpartisan

A new recent shipments of Gas masks has turned up in syria for use by the Syrian foreign funded insurgency affiliated with AlCIAda. Perhaps in preparation for the planned false flag chemical weapons attack that will be used by NATo as a tool to get sanctions and interventions approved by the UN. And in the last 24 hours the Israeli ambassador to the UN repeated the accusations that the syrian govt would use chemical weapons against its own people, laying the ground work for the false flag event to take place. This video is a summary of recent and past events


Protest in Turkey against Erdogan’s support for the US foreign policy and its support for aggression and instability in Syria  1/9/12

Al-Jazeera report on Turkish people marching for peace in Syria; note the editorial comments.


PRESS TV interviews American analysts (from August 2012):

US analyst from Executive Intelligence Report interviewed by Press TV, August 2012

He refers to the fear that a 30-year war will be created in the region if the conflict continues. Iran is being targeted, but the ultimate targets are Russia and China.  It is not the US military or the most of the intelligence community who want the conflict in Syria, but the Obama administration and their British allies.

US, allies using Turkey to start war in Syria: Analyst


Press TV

NAM can put brakes on wars in Middle East: Analyst

31 August 2012


NATO’s Secret Armies Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe

(Sourced from “Friends of Syria” blog)

Uploaded 1 September 2012

Interview with Daniele Ganser, author of »NATO’s Secret Armies.
Operation Gladio and Terrorism in Western Europe«


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