I just would like to share with you my last email an European citizen
I am fine 🙂 And I am very glad to hear from you. I expected you would be busy and traveling.
First let me tell you this news (you should have almost known):
Dr. Qadri Jamil has been assigned the Vice-Prime-Minister, minister of internal commerce and customer’s protection!
This is very appropriate, especially that he has always criticized the economical policies of the government and said that it didn’t listen to his advices. However, I wish he will succeed in protecting the Syrian economy and developing it, then all Syrians will be winners 🙂
I just still remember what he said about the Syrian economy (in your meeting with him): He drew a very black image and said that Syrian economy was based on investments! I wonder if he forgot that Syria has always been exporting wheat, cotton, olive oil and other corps. Syria is one of the rare countries, or may be the only country among the “third-world” who has ZERO debt! That the government has always been backing the essential nutrition materials such as bread (still 15 S.P for 1.5 Kg, i.e. a packet of bread)… It’s good anyway to highlight the mistakes, but not to ignore the facts.
Also Dr. Ali Haydar has been assigned as the minister of the National Reconciliation (a new established ministry): I think this is very appropriate because most of Syrians like and respect his personality.
Well, there are real military confrontations around Damascus (mainly in Douma, around Qudsaya, north of Barza where I live).
However, the general mood of most of people in Damascus (as I touch) is optimistic and satisfied that the army has started a “surgical operation” to “eradicate” the militant groups who have been performing swift attacks before they hide in their dens.
In Douma: Syrian army has almost finished sterilizing the quarter. Groups consisting of Arabic fighters have been killed/arrested. Some groups were even all non-Syrian Arabic fighters, with a Syrian coordinator each!
In Hameh (near Qudsaya): A real battle has occurred last week when an “army” of around 300 fighters blocked the road (Bridge of Al-Hameh, Jisr Al-Hameh) which is also near to the presidential palace. A violent battle resulted in killing tens of them, arresting many others, many if them are from Arabic nationalities.
Basing on my monitoring to the international media (main stream European media and the main Arabic media), I have built my personal opinion that this media when talks about Syria is EXACTLY the spokesman of those militant groups in Syria! Furthermore, they consider that those militant groups ARE the Syrian people! So when this media says that the “regime” is brutally suppressing Syrian people, it’s actually that those militant groups are being beaten!
that there can be some success in reaching out and creating dialogue and reconciliation, but sadly it seems harder and harder in the current circumstances. What kind of policies is Qadri talking about for the economy now? You talk about self-sufficiency but things are getting very hard with shortages and prices increases from what I saw. How is that effecting you?
I hope you are fine,
Here I answer your questions:
” but things are getting very hard with shortages and prices increases from what I saw. How is that effecting you?”
This has really affected all Syrian people!
The crisis has affected all kinds of Syrian people:
Cooking-gas and Diesel are the most clear aspect of the economical crisis. It has a direct aspect on all Syrians.There is an intense shortage of cooking-gas and Diesel. A gas cylinder which is priced at 500 SP is being sold by dealers at up to 2000SP!!! I mean by dealers those men who recruit boys to wait at the queue at the governmental stations to get it with 500 then to sell it to homes (with delivery) with 2000SP for families who can’t afford waiting the whole day at the station!
The government has started some measures such as adopting the “family book” to buy it and to subscribe for a cylinder at gov. institutions.
At my home, I bought an electrical heater for making tea and coffee, beside the microwave, so we minimize our consumption of gas!
However, we have also minimized our consumption of meat!
The bad effects of the crisis are not exclusive on consumption, nor on poor people, but even people who have small business or enterprises have been very affected due to the sharp declination of their business!
Especially the touristic industry! You had been previously in Damascus and should have noticed who empty has become the old city of tourists and even foreign students who used to animate the streets of Bab-Touma day and night… Same about restaurants in the suburbs of Damascus like Rabwa (that narrow street that leads to Doumar parallel to the little river between mountains, full of restaurants) as well as Zabadani and Bloudan that used to be the destination of those “tourists” from the Arabic Gulf.
Whereas manufacturers and industrialists have also been affected by the sanctions, because they encountered problems with their dealers in Europe. “Les amis du peuple syrien” didn’t omit to send a message to those Syrian businessmen when a woman (may be Ash-Ton) reminded them that they should not hope that the sanctions will have an end as long as they keep supporting the regime!!! (She wants them to help breaking down the economy to support the Syrian people!!!)
” You talk about self-sufficiency”
I think it is the right option to face the “humanitarian sanctions”.
Syria has experienced a similar trouble in the 80’s. And self-sufficiency strategy could rescue the country, and even could create a national industries such as the textile industry that is based on the national agriculture of cotton. Syria was the manufacturer of the sportive-clothes of world-cup of football in France (2002) as I remember. Syria has now many private pharmaceutical companies because we’ve learned from the lesson of the 80’s that the western world with the Arabic “brothers” will support Syrian people by all means, including preventing children milk and medicine from them…
“So your impression is that the army is winning its different battles? “
Yes. Well this is not only an impression. Syrian army didn’t need more than 3 days to end the militia existence there.
“You live in barzeh?”
” Has there been more clashes around there”
Yes. But never in civilian quarters. We only hear the voice that seem to be nearer of further from time to time. They occur in uninhabited areas, such as the farms of Barzeh and the mountain (Barzeh ends at the foot of Qasiun mountains)
” and how are you feeling? It must be worrying for you.”
Frankly speaking: No! Speaking about the general mood of co-inhabiting people in my quarter:
I use to sit at my window working on laptop. In the evening till a late hour of the night, people, families and young guys use to sit on their balconies watching TV, playing cards, having nargile, working on laptops like me… etc. When we suddenly hear clashes (that are sometimes even strong) I can watch the reaction of those people (buildings are about 100m distant from each other where I live): Some of them shout: “Hit them, beat them” and all of them continue their fun at balconies. While when we previously hear gun shots or bombs, before the army started its operations a couple of weeks ago, you could never see a man opening his window, other than sitting on balcony!
Simply because militant aim to create chaos, where army aim to bring security back. If you come back soon, you are invited to visit me and witness what I’m talking about.
“Did you hear the news about Tlass today? What do Syrians think about that?”
Yes I did. Well I don’t know yet. I prefer to answer you a couple of day later to probe the impression of Syrians (Blame him for that, because he did it at the start of the weekend hahaha nobody is giving it a damn… at least in an immediate way). Although I spent last night (the Thursday’s night which is equivalent to the Friday’s night in the West) with friends, nobody talked about that!
I think we have to wait a little bit to understand the “weight” of this act.
” its very sad to watch Syria from afar. I hope that I can come back soon”
This is right. All my friends in Europe tell me that the one who doesn’t know Syria very closely think, through TV, that it has been completely devastated and imagines Syria is something like Somalia or even worse.
However, as I always answer, I repeat here:
The western media, when it talks about Syria, is EXACTLY the spokesman of the terrorist Islamist groups, and call them: “Syrian people”, that is:
When your media report: “The regime is suppressing brutally its people and bombarding it”
You should understand: “Syrian army is tracking the terrorist groups and targeting them”
When you hear that “There is a little advance in the situation on Earth”
You should understand: “Terrorist groups are controlling some quarters and zones”
When Miss Clinton declares: “The regime may commit further massacres “
You should understand: “CIA with its agents in Turkey and Qatar are planing to commit further massacres, by the hands of the terrorist groups”
When “Friend of Syrian people” conferences comes out to “dedicate hundreds of millions of dollars” as “humanitarian aids” for “Syrian people” and its refugees in neighboring countries,
You should just translate it:
humanitarian aids= Logistic aids and weapons
Syrian people = The terrorist Islamist groups
refugees = Militants hosted in neighboring countries.
You are very welcome. You are very honest and Syria needs honest people, especially from Europe, which is very affecting, to come to Syria. We only want Europeans to be neutral and realistic. We, Syrians, don’t think anymore about who is pro-Bashar and who is not, we only want peace. We only ask EU to stop backing the militant groups with money and/or logistic support. We ask EU to stop the unjust sanctions that are making our lives harder and harder.
We only ask the “Friends of Syrian people”: THANK YOU, BUT…WOULD YOU PLEASE STOP SUPPORTING US!!!
, I would be grateful if you spread my above comments to anybody who may be concerned with Syrian issue. Thank you a lot.