Divine wrath: punish them for their sins. Certainly, they are being kept on a short leash, and for good reason, some of it tied back to American electoral policy, the other a revolution viewed as too big to fail status, permitting a bleeding of money, resources and human life without a fixed timetable to end it all. A worst case scenario would be a Communist style five year plan. There has been some hedging of the gambit over the past several months, though the scale of atrocities is in no way comparable; it seems more a carrot and stick approach to taming the rebels and the frontier ruthlessness that prevails, but probably deeply endemic within a historical context. Still, we keep hearing that Islam is a religion of peace, and although Western intervention and meddling may bring out the kooks, there is still a disconnect somewhere….
(see link at end) A RECENT video showing a group of rebels kicking men, bound with ropes, before killing them has raised concerns about Syria’s opposition fighters. The UN says the killings, which were captured on camera in a checkpoint raid during a battle to take control of the town of Saraqeb, may be a war crime. Members of the Syrian opposition have condemned the killings, highlighting the growing divisions within forces battling against Bashar Assad. Others have tried to write off the violence, saying extremists or Salafists, whose numbers are increasing among the fighters, were responsible.
But in the three months since rebels in Aleppo, Syria’s biggest city, executed a group of regime militiamen in a school playground in July, the UN and Human Rights Watch (HRW), an advocacy group, have documented an increasing number of such crimes. “We need to be clear that opposition crimes do not approach the systematic crimes by the regime that account for the majority of the deaths in Syria,” says Nadim Houry of HRW. “But we have documented grave acts by the rebel fighters in Aleppo, Idleb and Latakia that are likely to be happening elsewhere too.”
Summary killings of regime men are becoming more common. Few fighters use the courts set up in some areas by judges and civilians. Some rebel groups beat detainees, often on the soles of their feet (a method popular in the regime’s prisons). Others kidnap their enemies, demanding money or the freeing of their comrades in return for their release. There have been no reports that the rebels have committed massacres like those perpetrated by Mr Assad’s thugs, but a growing “with us or against us” mentality means that civilians loyal to the regime are being targeted as well as combatants.
Some opposition commanders grumble that they have no other option: prisoners are expensive to keep and tiresome to move. In addition, says Michael Shaikh of the Washington, DC-based Center for Civilians in Conflict, who recently travelled to northern Syria, opposition fighters see themselves as civilians protecting their peers, not as a party to a war bound by international law. …
Plenty of urban, middle-class Syrians, including those opposed to the regime, dislike the rebels. Many in Aleppo abhor the regime but are wary of the armed rebellion too. “But how do they expect us to win by just sitting there?” asks one fighter from Idleb province. Some groups signed a code of conduct in August, but others simply tell their men to keep their dirty work out of sight. Abu Issa, the head of Saquor al-Sham, an Idleb-based group, says he treats his captives well. But videos on his website show prisoners forced into booby-trapped cars that are then dispatched to blow up checkpoints.
“My men are now used to killing,” says Abu Azzam, a rebel leader with Farouq brigade in Raqqa province. Fighters feel their violence is justified given that of the regime. With little help forthcoming from outsiders, and no sign of the West arming the rebels, some fighters reckon they have little to lose by being ruthless.Read More:http://www.economist.com/blogs/pomegranate/2012/11/syrias-rebels
It’s terrible. Nation building and insurrection is violent and the necessity given American regional interests and Syrrian citizenry is also complex to unravel. Still,there is no comparison between the regime’s scale and frequency of crimes as opposed to the rebels. The patterns of behavior are a two different levels, despite the best efforts of the far lefties to equate the two. No moral equivalence. The Assad’s used Israel and assorted Zionist conspiracies for years to justify civilian oppression. Israel in the Golan was a gift to these oppressors. It’s sad, but the Assad regimes resortmassacres have become so mundane and banal as to have no emotional impact anymore…
So, the frequency and scale of killings, crimes of murdering captives does matter. Dispatching Aleppo thugs, is no great loss for mankind, but the fact there is debate among the FSA and their supporters over the morality of such activities indicates a willingness to grapple with the issue. There is no question that the Free Syrian Army is the most moral armed Arab movement ever. You cannot compare them to the PLO since they don’t engage in air piracy, civilian explosions, etc. They will succeed without being the pocket of Saudi Arabia or Quatar as being the role of attack dogs for these donors. The comparisons are absurd when you consider the billions pocketed by Arafat, personally or the opulent luxury that Abbas lives in. In the West, with all the freedoms, its very easy, a path of least resistance to get sucked into the rhetoric of imbecilic commentary vomited out from the comfort and safety of a society and culture that is hated. The bite the hand that feeds you syndrome…
From an interview with Ariel Sharon that shows some of the mindset that, though from Israel does show some relation to a Semitic perspective.He wasn’t called the bulldozer for nothing….
(see link at end)…”I personally don’t want to be any better than Khomeini or Brezhnev or Ghadafi or Assad or Mrs. Thatcher, or even Harry Truman who killed half a million Japanese with two fine bombs. I only want to be smarter than they are, quicker and more efficient, not better or more beautiful than they are. Tell me, do the baddies of this world have a bad time? If anyone tries to touch them, the evil men cut his hands and legs off. They hunt and catch whatever they feel like eating. They don’t suffer from indigestion and are not punished by Heaven. I want Israel to join that club. Maybe the world will then at last begin to fear me instead of feeling sorry for me. Maybe they will start to tremble, to fear my madness instead of admiring my nobility. Thank God for that. Let them tremble, let them call us a mad state. Let them understand that we are a wild country, dangerous to our surroundings, not normal, that we might go crazy if one of our children is murdered – just one! That we might go wild and burn all the oil fields in the Middle East! If anything would happen to your child, God forbid, you would talk like I do. Let them be aware in Washington, Moscow, Damascus and China that if one of our ambassadors is shot, or even a consul or the most junior embassy official, we might start World War Three just like that!” Read More:http://wakeupfromyourslumber.com/blog/andie531/ariel-sharons-samson-option-rant