[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
ICG’s Report on Hezbollah: Now Hariri Propaganda Masquerading as March 14 Propaganda (or vice versa) Asad AbuKhalil is critical of a recent report issued by the International Crisis Group for being too disparaging of Hezbollah’s role in the Syrian conflict
Slow Increase in U.S. Support for the Syrian Opposition Aron Lund comments on Syrian opposition leader Ahmad Jarba’s visit to the White House.
Obama Close to Authorizing Military Training of Syrian Rebels Adam Entous says the “new military training program, if implemented, would supplement a small train-and-equip program led by the Central Intelligence Agency that Mr. Obama authorized a year ago. U.S. officials don`t discuss the CIA`s limited training program because it is covert.”
How to Train a Rebel Army (Secretly) in Seven Steps A piece by Frontline reporter Muhammad Ali on programs implemented by the US
Whatever Happened to the ‘Arab Spring?’ Lina Khatib, Joshua Landis, Marc Lynch and Aryn Baker on KCRW’s To The Point with Warren Olney.
Former Ambassador talks Syia malaise Robert Ford expresses his disagreement with the Syrian stance taken by the US government while discussing with Christiane Amanpour.
‘New Aleppo’ rises in Armenia Hannah Smith writes about the project to build a town called “New Aleppo,” located 20km away from Yerevan, to accomodate Armenian Syrians arrived in Armenia.
The Socio-Economic Implications of Syrian Refugees on Jordan An extensive research by Khalid W. al Wazani
What Do Syria’s Rebels Want from the West? Researchers at the Carnegie Institute release the results of a survey of Syrian rebels, indication that more than half would welcome U.S.- or NATO-led intervention, and about half believe a non-democratic government is preferable to an English one under certain circumstances.
Militarization and External Intervention: The Syrian Crisis A report by Osama Esber on Bassam Haddad’s lectures in Chicago
Golan Diary: A View Into Syria Nicholas Casey reports on the IDF soldiers who watch the Syria conflict from the occupied Golan Heights
Death in Aleppo: A group of Afghan fighters located in Syria Christoph Reuter reports
Iran Pays Afghans to Fight for Assad Farnaz Fassihi reports that “Iran has been recruiting thousands of Afghan refugees to fight in Syria, offering $500 a month and Iranian residency to help the Assad regime beat back rebel forces, according to Afghans and a Western official.”
Iranian Official says US, All Countries have ‘Duty’ to Confront Terror in Syria Al-Monitor’s Interview with Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs
European women find appeal in Syrian jihad Brenda Stoter reports on some European women following their husbands in Syria.
Lebanon to only take refugees fleeing towns near border “Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas said Wednesday that Lebanon would only receive refugees fleeing from Syrian regions near its border, but not those coming from areas at a considerable distance.”
Interview with US Peace Envoy Brahimi: ‘Syria Will Become Another Somalia’ Susanne Koelbl interviews Brahimi, who says negotiations failed because neither Russia not the US could convince their friends to participate in the negotiations seriously.
Left solidarity: Supporting grassroots movements in Syria Leila Shrooms says “the failure to support civil movements on the ground, and a lack of ability to respond flexibly to real revolutionary situations as they unfold, is making the left less and less relevant as a political movement”
A Dangerous Method: Syria, Sy Hersh, and the Art of Mass-crime Revisionism Muhammed Idrees Ahmad challenges Seymour Hersh’s article on the chemical attacks
The Psychological Effects of War on Children in Syria A report from Syrian refugee camps by Muhammad al-Nadar
Don’t Ignore Syria’s Nonviolent Movement Tamara al-Om highlights the continuing role of the Nonviolent Movement and the #Douma4 campaign
Assessing the State of Syria’s Detainees The Violations Documentation Center claims that more than 200,000 thousand have been arrested in Syria since the beginning of the uprising
From Our Facebook Balconies, the Dark Heart of Yarmuk Ahmed Diab writes that the Yarmuk siege has prompted even the apolitical UNRWA to say “the lexicon of man’s inhumanity has a new word: it’s Yarmuk.”
Don`t ignore Syria`s nonviolent movement Tamara al-Om explains how “myriad peace groups have played a significant role in refocusing the country`s struggle on freedom and justice”
Islam`s Lawyers in Arms Sam Heller reports on the creation, on 17 May, for a “Revolutionary Covenant” by Syrian Islamist rebels, which “ promised respect for Syria`s multiethnic makeup and a "state of justice, law and freedom," albeit one bound by the rules of Islamic law.”
The man at the centre of southern Syria’s crumbling rebel alliance Phil Sands and Suha Maayeh report on the capture of FSA colonel Ahmed Nehmeh by Jabhat al-Nusra and the information he provided on his collaboration with foreign intelligence agencies.
Ces oligarques syriens qui tiennent à bout de bras le régime Assad According to Le Monde’s investigation reveals how the regime maintains its ties to those loyal to the regime and how it funds its war against the opposition.
Explainer: Who can vote in Syria`s elections? A useful summary by Basma Atassi and Alia Chughtai
The Elections of Humiliation Michel Kilo shares his stance towards the Syrian elections.
Syria presidential election: Assad`s stage-managed show of democracy A coverage by Lina Sinjab, reporting from Damascus and Ian Black.
Religious Groups and Scholars of Islam in the Syrian Revolution – by Issam Eido
Syrians caught between bombs and ballot box in shattered Aleppo Richard Spencer reports from Aleppo that barrel bombings continued as elections were held in the country.
A City Left in Ruins: The Battle for Aleppo A Vice documentary about the courageous work of the civil defense in Aleppo, a group of civilians who, under the constant aerial bombardment by the regime, seek to pick up the dead bodies and facilitate rescue missions. The documentary also addresses how the extremist opposition has managed to mobilize teenagers in its fight against the regime.
Syrie : la guerre des tunnels An exclusive French report on the secret tunnels in Jobar, used by both the opposition fighters and the regime.
Syrian coast attracts Aleppans displaced by war A piece by an anonymous writer in Tartous.
Douma, Damascus Suburbs (31/5/2014): A demo in solidarity with Razan Zaitouna and her colleagues, the kidnapped activists /دوما بالغوطة الشرقية 2014 5 31 وقفة تضامنية مع الناشطين الحقوقين المخطوفين رزان زيتونة ورفاقهاوبيان
Mediation on the Destruction of Aleppo, Homs and the Syrian Urban Centres Alisan Iram on the destruction of Homs and Aleppo.
Syrie : Maaloula, une ville touristique à présent désertée A French report which follows a family returning to Maaloula to take some of their belongings, only to find them missing amidst the destruction.
Rebels Shell Aleppo as Syrians Vote Armed Rebel factions vowed to disrupt the elections in any way possible, including bombing and shelling polling stations and regime-controlled areas
Chemical Weapons Inspectors Escape Attack in Syria Ben Hubbard reports that a team sent by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to investigate allegations of chlorine gas use was attacked and unable to complete its mission.
Children among Fifteen Civilians Summarily Killed in Northern Syria Amnesty International investigates an ISIS attack on a Kurdish area of Syria
Syrian Coasts Attract Aleppans Displaced by War Al-Monitor reports that in coastal areas of Syria, “hundreds of Aleppans are quite visible, staying in houses rented from Alawite landlords.”
Dr. Bashar Hafez al-Assad wins post of President of Syria with sweeping majority of votes at 88.7% The Syrian government newswire reports on Assad’s reelection.
Nasrallah: Syria’s Electon Exposed Western Hypocrisy Al-Akhbar summarizes Nasrallah’s recent speech regarding the Syrian elections
Assad`s Hollow Mandate Steven Heydemann writes: “Tuesday`s election is easy to ridicule, but it would be a mistake to dismiss it as a meaningless charade.”
Damascus and Suburbs Under Fire as Assad `Re-Elected` Syria Direct echoes developments in the Syrian capital.
Assad and the post-eternity era Writer Elias Khoury writes: “Assad and no other. Assad is no one. He is a nebulous being soaked in blood and trampling on corpses, a man who claims to be president of a republic that no longer exists.”
Syrian Elections: Lebanese Prejudice Rears its Ugly Head Rana Harbi covers some of the racism expressed towards Syrian refugees in Lebanon in relation to the election, with several prominent figures demanding that Syrians who voted for Assad “get deported home.”
Syrians in Lebanon Vote in Presidential Elections Matthew Barber reposts some tweets mainly from Anne Barnard who witnessed the scene in Beirut.
Like `Doctor Who,` Syrian Activists Hang In Limbo Post-Election Deborah Amos speaks with Aboud Dandachi
Rebels shell Aleppo as Syria votes Edward Dark (pseudonym), a blogger living in Aleppo, writes: “The regime crowns its victory in blood, while its opponents shed the blood of the innocent in blind, retaliatory rage. Syrians are under no illusion that this regime is or can ever be democratic. Neither do they believe that those who fight against it will offer them anything better.”
Syrian official: `West will deal with us as a fait accompli` Jean Aziz reports from Damascus
Syrian Revolutionaries “Elect the Revolution” Demonstration A piece on a symbolic, alternative election organized by Syrian Revolution Coordinators’ Union, in ‘liberated’ areas and in refugee camps.
Abdul Halim Khaddam: Those who vote for Bashar are acting out of fear Asharq Al-Awsat interviews former Syrian Vice-President
Syria`s Election Is a Cruel Farce Amal Hanano says “today, Syria is split between people who can’t unsee the horrors they have seen over the last three years and those who are more than willing to tighten the blindfold onto their eyes.”
A Defeat, Actually Reporting for the Syrian Observer, Mamoum Jabaari explains how, “despite the marketing campaign, any election victory will be hollow”
Arts and Social Media
Ghassan Kanafani: A Profile from the Archives A Jadaliyya Profile of Palestinian Syria-raised Journalist Ghassan Kanafahi
Muhammad al-Maghut: Roman Amphitheatres A translation of Muhammad al-Maghut’s poetry by Ahmad Diab
A Creative Upsurge; Syrian Art Today (Part One) A report by Mayanmah Farhat from the exhibit “Syria’s Apex Generation.”
A Creative Upsurge; Syrian Art Today (Part Two) A report by Mayanmah Farhat from the exhibit “Syria’s Apex Generation.”
Syrian artists in exile ‘preserve the human spirit’ A piece on artists met in Beirut and how their art changed as a result of the war
Policy and Reports
Challenges of Aid Coordination in a Complex Crisis: An Overview of Funding Policies and Conditions Regarding Air Provision to Syrian Refugees in Lebanon Dalya Mitri lays out the complicated web of governmental, NGO, and other donor networks involved in providing support to Syrian refugees in Lebanon
Regime Air Activity in Hama: 1,800 Sorties in 50 Days Valerie Szybala and Chris Harmer say that “according to data collected between 30 March and 20 May, the Syrian regime flew at least 1,864 air sorties in the northern Hama region.”
Lebanon’s Hezbollah Turns Eastward to Syria International Crisis Group says that “Hezbollah’s involvement in Syria threatens the movement and is problematic for Lebanon and the Arab world more broadly.”
Foreign Fighters in Syria Richard Barrett with the Soufan group reports that nearly 12,000 foreign fighters are now involved in the civil war in Syria
Syria’s 2014 Presidential Elections: Internally Displaced Syrians and Refugees Give their Verdict An opinion poll from Azmi Bishara’s ACRPS Institute found that 78% of respondents view the elections as illegitimate
Dynamic Stalemate: Surveying Syria’s Military Landscape A policy brief by Charles Lister, for the Brookings Doha Center
Economy and Agriculture
Syria`s economic losses: 144 billion dollars Ziad Ghosn discusses this latest report issued in Damascus.
Syria Remembered A website that seeks to remember the different cities in Syria through images, articles and testimonies.
The regional vortex around Syria A panel discussion with Daniel Levy, Jihad Yazigi, Julien Barnes-Dacey at INALCO in Paris.
تجربة الإدارة المدنية للكتائب الإسلامية، بلدة مسكنة نموذجاً
Jalal Addin Arraqqi presents and studies an example of the civil administration of Islamic bridages.
عن السوري الذي اختار أن يكون سمكة
Mudar al-Haggi on the Syrian experience in findinf refuge somewhere around the world.
وقفة تضامنية مع الناشطين الحقوقين المخطوفين رزان زيتونة ورفاقهاوبيان"
Douma, Damascus Suburbs (31/5/2014): A demonstration in solidarity with Razan Zaitouna and her colleagues, the kidnapped activists.
...الكارثة السورية بالأرقام
The Syrian Revolutionary Leftist Current present the Syrian catastrophe in numbers.
Hussein al-Awdat on “democracy and elections”
كي ينتهي الاستبداد
Samir al-Aitah on how to get rid of tyranny.
من أدوات الموت يصنع السوريون الحياة من جديد
Alarab Press reports “from the tools of death, Syrians create life.”
القصة الكاملة للمفاوضات التي سبقت الانسحاب من حمص
Rim Turkmani exposes the story behind the negotiations that preceded the withdrawal of the armed opposition from Homs.
حين ينتخب المرء جلّاده
Mohammad al-Attar on the racism against Syrians in Lebanon that peaked especially during the recent Syrian elections, and on the reasons that may have compelled some Syrians to “elect their executioner”.
السوريون في الأشرفية: حرّكوا إقتصاد المنطقة وأدخلوا الحيوية والتنوّع إليها
Rayyan Majed writes, “Syrians in Al-ashrafiyyeh: they boosted its economy and introduced diversity and livelihood to it.”
داعش ينغمس ترهيبا و ترغيبا ... و النظام السوري ينزف
Ibrahim Hamidi writes about three political levels behind the endeavor of the American administration to form a strategic alliance to fight against ISIS.