Towards a democratic Syria!

In 1998, only 219 Syrians voted against Hafez Assad’s government. One of them was Ammar Abdulhamid. Now exiled and awaiting political asylum in US, Syrian opposition leader talks to Ynet in exclusive interview.

Yitzhak Benhorin

WASHINGTON – In a national referendum held by late Syrian President Hafez Assad in 1998, only 219 people voted against the government. One of them was Ammar Abdulhamid, 40, a Syrian opposition activist, exiled from Damascus in 2005 and currently awaiting political asylum in the United States. Continue reading “Towards a democratic Syria!”

Rosy Scenarios & Regional Realities!

The Saudis, led by prince Bandar, seems to be doing a really great job trying to break up the HISH Alliance. They are doing this by engaging both the weakest and strongest links in the Alliance. Indeed, and rather than trying to wean the proven hopeless Assads off of their dependence on Iran and Hezbollah, as the pro-engagement crowd in the US was want to do, the Saudis went straight to the source, to the puppet-masters themselves, and showed them the wisdom of divesting themselves from the pesky and troublemaking Assads. In the meantime, they managed to sponsor an important summit in Mecca in which they sponsored a deal between the warring factions in Gaza, and reestablished their patronage over the weakest link in the Alliance – Hamas. Continue reading “Rosy Scenarios & Regional Realities!”

The Unreasonable Heretic!

A friend told me not too long ago that some people tend to find my position on the Assads to be somewhat unreasonable. After all, some of their stands and policies, especially with regard to the peace process and the Arab-Israeli Conflict seem to reflect how the majority of people in Syria and elsewhere in the region and the world feel and think. So why we not support them on these matters? Wouldn’t this be the patriotic thing to do, regardless of how we feel about their internal policies? Continue reading “The Unreasonable Heretic!”

The New Revolutionaries

BitterLemons – Edition 7 Volume 5 – February 15, 2007: The Arab Blogosphere

When I launched my blog on February 6, 2005 I never imagined that it would become an obsession of mine or a mini-phenomenon for many people interested in the region. Yet within months of the beginning, it became clear to me that blogging was destined to become an integral part of my life, perhaps for the rest of my life, and a basic pillar of my activities as a dissident and self-declared heretic. Indeed, I am a now on the advisory board of the Committee to Protect Bloggers, a US-based NGO that sheds light on the travails of bloggers worldwide, a regular juror in Deutche-Welle’s annual contest the Best of the Blogs, a regular participant in international conferences on blogging and, most important, the founder of a special blogging community (the Tharwa community) that focuses on democracy activism in the region. Continue reading “The New Revolutionaries”