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Sunday, April 24, 2005 

"Tomorrow everything will be over"

Those are the words of a Syrian officer.

Every single Syrian solider and intelligence officer will have left Lebanon by night-fall on Sunday. And that includes the dreaded Anjar base in the Bekaa border region.

Syria Chief of Military Intelligence - the dreaded Major General Rustom Ghazale will also be on his way home today. He's Syria's man in Lebanon - the equivalent of Paul Bremer (and now Negroponte) in Iraq.

Last night the largest contingent of army vehicles yet headed towards the Masnaa border crossing and into Syria. 10 positions were vacated and trucks carrying soldiers were seen, along with armoured vehicles.

Only weeks ago Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad spoke to parliament and said that all Syrian troops would withdraw to the border area. Yet commentators questioned whether he meant the Syrian or the Lebanese side of the border.

Un Secretary General Kofi Annan has delayed publishing a report on Syria's progress towards UN Resolution 1559 until a UN team could go to Lebanon to verify the withdrawl. That delay drew the wrath of President Bush, who - on seeing the speed of the withdrawal - has stepped up his 'calls' for Syria to leave Lebanon. Shutting the door after the horse has bolted?

A wave of sighs spread across the Levant today.

Sasa what is the Levant excatly. I have noticed you keep using that word. is it different to "the middle east"?

Yet, it seems that nothing is going to satisfy the lurking Bush

Hi Amr, the Levant is generally the same as Bilad Ash-Sham. That is 'historic Syria': Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Palestine. They share a culture, dialect and history.

Some people define the Middle East as the Levant plus the Arabian Peninsular (i.e. Saudi, Yemen and the Gulf) - but NOT North Africa.

Other people call the Middle East all the Arab countries (from Morocco to Iraq) plus Iran and Turkey - and sometimes even Afghanistan!

None of these words have exact definitions, they just have historical usages. Look at the Arab League for example - is the Comoros Islands (off the coast of Southern Africa) really Arab? What about Mauritania?

I like your blogg. Thank you. I can read also what Syrians are thinking. F

What I hate with most Lebaneese is,whenever you say the truth they always go away. You will never hear Thruth from them not even a true Hallo. Fyi I am not arab. Keep blogging.

Thanks anonymous! Where are you from, thank you for your kind comments.

I know it is easy for us to be angry with Lebanese but they are a proud independent nation, still coming to terms with their post-war differences. It's great that they are directing their anger outside instead of inside. All we want is for a peaceful, independent Lebanon with good relations with Syria. And I think that's what most Lebanese want too.

Sasa I am Greek. Have a nice day.
Kalimera

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  • Written by sasa
  • From Damascus, Syria
  • From Damascus to London via Beirut. Based in and out of the central Damascene hamlet of Saroujah. News and feelings from the streets every day. I'm talking rubbish? Leave a comment. Welcome to the information democracy. See below for info about this site.
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