Tuesday, August 29, 2006 

Jumblatt holds talks with Israeli politicians

Lebanese politician Walid Jumblatt has been talking to Israeli deputy Colette Avital.

She says she met him by chance in Paris. He expressed his animosity towards Nasrallah - something even Hariri has been scared to do.

Monday, August 28, 2006 

Michel Aoun threatens new civil war

Michel Aoun, ousted war-lord, former enemy of Syria turned friend, says he'll start a new civil war unless the government resigns.

"We hope ... a very peaceful change takes place, preserving stability in the country," Aoun said. "If this change does not happen in such a way, there are other ways to escalate from now on."


Syria says it's ready to talk to Israel

"When Israel, supported by the US, is ready to resume the peace process, Syria will be ready." - Faisal Meqdad, Deputy Foreign Minister (one of the most wise people in the Syrian Government).

It is easy to see this as a very good time for Syria, Lebanon and Israel. Coming out of the rubble and catastrophy of the war on Lebanon, there is a real chance for peace. Syria wants talks, Nasrallah says he regrets the war, and Israel's Foreign Minister and Defence Minister say they are looking at whether to talk to Syria. There are two massive hurdles: the Israeli right-wing, who smell power (especially if Olmert gets kicked out), and Bush.


Nasrallah says sorry for the war

Hizbollah leader Sayyid Hassan Nasrallah has apologised to the Lebanese people for the war in which Israel killed more than a thousand people.

He says he had no idea the kidnapping of two soldiers would lead to such a devistating conflict. Israel's destruction of Lebanon did indeed stun the whole world.

He says plans are underway for him to meet UN head Kofi Annan to discuss the enlarged UN peacekeeping force in the South. And he confirmed mediators are dealing with Hizbollah and Israel to get an agreement on the release of the two Israelis. Nasrallah is demanding a prisoner swap.

Sunday, August 27, 2006 

Syrian weddings

This is from David:

Hello there,

My name is David Boyer and I am working on a book about bachelor parties and pre-wedding rituals around the world.

The reason I am writing is that I'm hoping to include an interesting story about Syrian pre-wedding rituals for men. Have you been to any? Do you have any interesting stories? Know someone who does? If you do, please email me at dboyer@bachelorparties.org (and if you have any questions, just ask). It can be totally anonymous!

If you have any questions, just ask.

All my best,


Saturday, August 26, 2006 

Lebanese government backs Israel

The wife of government minister Michael Pharaon, Mona Pharaon, has been caught on camera raising her glass to the "success of the Israeli army".

Wednesday, August 23, 2006 

Israel plans talks with Syria

israel's Foreign Minister says she is looking at talks with Syria.

Tzipi Livni said she will launch a committee: "to raise all the issues and interests of Syria vis-a-vis Israel and make a diplomatic assessment."

It comes just days after Israel's Defence Minister Amir Peretz said he wanted negotiations over the Golan Heights.

Sunday, August 20, 2006 

SNAP: Kofi Annan condemns Israel - calls Israel's attack a 'violation' of the ceasefire

In the past few minutes, Kofi Annan, Secretary General of the UN has said Israel has breached the ceasefire today.

Israel invaded eastern Lebanon this morning, sending troops in by helicopter to kill a senior Hizbollah figure. Israel claims it was to stop weapons coming over the border.

Israel says it was acting to prevent Hizbollah breaching the ceasefire (by importing weapons) - but they forgot that it isn't their right to do that, only the UN can. It would be similar to Hizbollah attacking Israeli troops because they haven't left Lebanon as required by the Resolution.

The Israeli intruders were found and an Israeli soldier and three Hizbollah fighters died in the fight that followed.

Saturday, August 19, 2006 

Israel breaches the ceasefire

Israel has confirmed a major breach of the ceasefire.

It has sent two commando units deep into Eastern Lebanon.

Three Hizbollah fighters have been killed, according to Lebanese officials. Israel has also suffered heavy casualties.

Their helicopters pulled troops out after coming under heavy fire.

The Israelis were driving in two vehicles in Eastern Lebanon, when they were spotted and ambushed by the Hizbollah fighters. They were on their way to kill Hizbollah official Sheikh Mohammed Yazbek in the village of Bodai.

Friday, August 18, 2006 

Lebanese army arrives at the Israeli border

A single Lebanese jeep passed the Fatima Gate between Lebanon and Israel, a symbolic gesture, to say Lebanese troops now control every corner of the country.

The jeep didn't stop, it left straight away. But it didn't need to. This was a show of strength, a show of how far the army can go, just like the Israeli army helicoptering in troops to walk on the banks of the Litani River. They didn't really push all the way up from the border to the Litani, but Israel needed to see its troops touch the river and run back.

Israeli troops have left much of south Lebanon. Lebanese troops have deployed in mainly Christian villages. And they say they won't deploy on the border until Israel withdraws and the UN forces arrive.

Hizbollah supporters (and fighters) welcomed the Lebanese Army, throwing rice.


Hariri attacks Syria

Baby Hariri has accused Syria of trying to sow discord, two days after Bashar accused Hariri of trying to sow discord.

The renowned politician, who is the wealthiest man in Lebanon, also called Syria 'corrupt'.

"There is a neighbouring president who is threatening to destroy the political regime in Lebanon because he could not digest the Lebanese people's decision to throw out his corruption and troops from Lebanon," he said.

"The regime in Syria is trading with the blood of the children of Qana, Gaza and Baghdad."

Wednesday, August 16, 2006 

Israel wants negotiations with Syria

(I've been waiting for so many years to write that headline).

Israeli Defense Minister Amir Peretz said that "every war creates opportunities for an extensive diplomatic process," and that "we need to hold negotiations with Lebanon and lay the groundwork for negotiations with Syria."


Bashar declares the war a victory for Hizbollah

Bashar Al-Assad has declared the war a victory for Hizbollah.

The militia, who deserve the title of the 'real' Lebanese Army are the only force to have defeated Israel. Ever. And now they've done it twice.

Would you like some hoummous with that Ehud?


Cars flood out of Beirut into south Lebanon

Cars are flooding out of Beirut at a rate of 6000 an hour. That's six thousand!

It comes just one day after the fragile ceasefire began. They are returning, despite fears war might break out at short notice. And what are they returning to? Many villages in the south no longer exist.


Lebanese Army in the south on Thursday

The Lebanese Army will arrive in the south of Lebanon on Thursday.

Hizbollah has agreed to the deployment, which is part of the ceasefire agreement.

The UN says its first group of extra troops will arrive in two weeks.


Israel considers a prisoner exchange

Israel is condsidering swapping some of the thousands of Lebanese prisoners languishing in Israeli jails for their two captured soldiers.

Many of the prisoners have never been charged with a crime. They are locked up because of their nationality.

If Israel had considered a prisoner swap when this all began, 1100 Lebanese and 100 Israelis (including many dead Israeli soldiers - that's irony) might still be alive.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006 

Fireworks in Beirut

The sky above Beirut has been lit up with explosions again tonight.

But these were colourful and exciting - Lebanon celebrates its first day of peace.

Congratulations Lebanon.

Monday, August 14, 2006 

SNAP: Israel admits breaching ceasefire

Israel says it has killed a Hizbollah fighter. They claim he "approached Israeli troops in a threatening way".

Let the history books record that:

- Israel was still pounding Lebanon 15 minutes before the ceasefire.

- Israel was the first party to fire a shot after the ceasefire. Well, they lasted for four and a half hours without killing anyone.

Sunday, August 13, 2006 

Lebanese cabinet cancels meeting - disagreement between Hizbollah and Siniora

The Lebanese government has called off a meeting. It's because of a disagreement over the disarming of Hizbollah.



Peace at 8am?

Kofi Annan has set tomorrow morning for an end to the fighting. he said it should have happened much, much earlier.

But 30,000 Israeli troops will still remain in Lebanon - and Hizbollah has vowed to keep fighting until they leave.

Israel says it will return fire if their occupation soldiers are attacked.

So will it be a peaceful morning?


Israeli helicopter shot down

An Israeli helicopter has been shot down over Lebanon according to Israel. It's thought all of the soldiers on board have died.

It comes just a day after Hizbollah sunk an Israeli warship of the coast of Tyre.


The war ends on Monday

Israel's promising to end its war on lebanon on Monday. It says it will end its invasion too - but they say they will not pull their troops out.

Saturday, August 12, 2006 

Ceasefire, what ceasefire? More murder in the assymetrical war

20 Lebanese CIVILIANS dead. 7 Israeli SOLDIERS dead (in occupied southern Lebanon).


The resolution - what does it say

The UN Security Council backed the resolution unanimously.

Here's what it demands:

- A "full cessation of hostilities." Hizbollah is to stop fighting immediately and Israel is to halt all "offensive military operations."

- Deployment of up to 15,000 new troops for the U.N. Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) to monitor the truce.

- UNIFIL can "take all the necessary action to ensure that its area of operations is not used for hostile activities of any kind."

- The Lebanese government is to deploy troops in the south, now controlled by Hizbollah, and prevent any weapons flowing to the militia.

- Israel is to withdraw its forces from southern Lebanon when fighting stops in parallel with the deployment of Lebanese and U.N. troops.

- States are to bar the delivery of weapons or military equipment to "any entity or individual" in Lebanon, except the Lebanese army and U.N. troops.

- The preamble of the resolution, which carries less weight, calls for the unconditional release of Israeli soldiers abducted by Hizbollah in a cross-border raid. And it encourages settling the issue of Lebanese prisoners detained in Israel.

- UN Secretary General Kofi Annan is to develop proposals within 30 days for disarmament of militia and delineation of borders, including the disputed Shebaa farms area on the Israel-Syrian-Lebanon border.


Blair calls for immediate ceasefire

British Prime Minister Tony Blair has finally called for an immediate ceasefire after the UN vote.

British Foreign Minister Margaret Beckett has demanded Israel let international peacekeepers in immediately.


UN votes for peace, Israel votes for war

Israel has expanded its occupation and invasion of Lebanon, just hours after the UN voted for a comprehensive end to the fighting.

Israel - through the United States - crafted the UN resolution to its satisfaction, but has now rejected it.

Thursday, August 10, 2006 


As the war continues in Lebanon and Israel, the war of words continues here on the Syria News Wire.

Keep talking - it's the only way to solve this mess. Don't forget, you can leave a comment on anything you read, you don't even need a login or password - you can comment anonymously.

Here's a selection.

Nir: Stop crying, you lost in the war, now suffer. The Druze have same rights, Christian have the same rights, with the Arabs its just cant work. We do not like people that live in our country and try to destroy the country. In Israel, they're called Arabs. It is funny to hear comments about democracy from Arabs, look in the mirror from time to time. At least Israel are not aiming to kill civilians, mistakes happen in every war. But Hezballa don’t make mistake, they aim just to kill civilians, as many as they can.

Norman: I see what Nir writes, and I wonder if anybody believes that the Arabs can live side by side to people Mr Nir represents - he does not represent the Jewish people as i know Jewish people they are my friends in the US - they send me more business than non-Jews, they are humble and helpful, the people in Israel are not Jews they are the racist Zionists who think that God gave them the holy land.

GottfriedStutz: Israel a democracy? Here are three examples why this not true: Administrative detention which applies also inside Israel proper, i.e. to Israeli citizens. It is usually applied only for Israeli Arabs. Media:Israel has never enshrined in law the right to freedom of speech and under an emergency regulation inherited from the British mandate - the Press Ordinance of 1933 - the government can close newspapers at will and without reason. This measure has been used a few times against dissident Arab Israeli media without evidence. Education: Israel separates the education of Israeli Jews and Israeli Arabs until university entry.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006 

Amal militia back on the streets of Tyre

The Amal militia - not seen since the civil war - is patrolling the streets of Tyre.

Since the civil war, only the Hizbollah militia has been active. Amal's presence (even though they are allied to Hizbollah) is a bold move.

Monday, August 07, 2006 

Lebanon body count

925 dead.

Sunday, August 06, 2006 

George Bisharat: When I last saw Lebanon

"The blow had been planned for at least a year, awaiting only the pretext of Hizbullah's capture of two Israeli soldiers. Hizbullah seized them to trade for Lebanese detainees that Israel had previously refused to release. If Hizbullah indeed attacked inside Israel - some reports initially located the skirmish in Lebanon - it violated Israel's sovereignty, took Israeli lives, and committed grave wrongs - but did nothing to justify the destruction of a country."


Israeli fighters hide behind (Arab) civilians

With Israel using the tired excuse that Hizbollah 'hide' behind Lebanese civilians, there are claims Israel is hiding behind Israeli-Arab civilians - not Jews, just Arabs.

Most of their military bases in northern Israel are right next to Arab villages.


Civilians die in Lebanon, soldiers die in Israel

The assymetrical war continues - 5 CIVILIANS die in Ansar, 10 SOLDIERS die in Northern Israel.


Syria back in the fold?

Arab League Secretary visits Syria to discuss the crisis in Lebanon, as Syria's Foreign Minister visits Lebanon.


Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallim in Lebanon.

It's the first visit of a Syrian official to Lebanon, since Syria withdrew its troops last year.

The Syrian Prime Minister is also expected to visit soon.

Saturday, August 05, 2006 

The comments section on the Syria News Wire

The 'comments' section has always been open to anyone who wants to say something - with their name or anonymously.

No comment has ever been deleted, despite accusations from some readers recently. I challenge you to tell me what has been erased, and repost it.

Everything that is said remains on this site, everyone has a right to give their view, no matter how disgusting it is. I think our readers are wise enough not to let anything go unchallenged.

Friday, August 04, 2006 

Israel hits Lebanon-Syria border, kills 28 mainly Syrians

28 people have died in an Israeli airstrike in the north east, on the Syrian border.

They hit a vegetable warehouse in Qaa, killing mainly Syrian Kurds. The injured were taken to hospitals inside Syria.


Israel promises not to attack Syria

Israeli Defence Minister Amir Peretz: "We are doing all so that the situation on the front with Syria remains unchanged, and we are sending the message with the hope that it will be heard."


Venezuela cuts ties with Israel - Jordan's King Abdullah criticises Israel

Venezuela has pulled its ambassador out of Israel, calling the attacks on Lebanon 'genocide'.

And Jordan has broken ranks with Israel, publicly criticising its ally for the first time.

Thursday, August 03, 2006 

Lebanon body count

900 dead.

3000 injured.

1 million refugees - one in three Lebanese forced on to the streets.


SNAP: Syria promises to rein in Hizbollah

Spain says Syria has promised to use all its influence on Hizbollah.


Masna'a crossing closed

The Masna'a crossing between Syria and Lebanon has been closed after an Israeli attack. It is the main crossing point between the two countries.

It's a vital escape route for civilians, and one of the only places aid can come into the country.

Israeli jets hit 300 meters beyond the Lebanese passport control, in the long road towards the Syrian passport control - that territory is recognised as Lebanese.


Israel plane over Syria

An Israeli spy plane has been spotted over Syria. Anti-aircraft missiles were fired.


Germany talks to Syria

As France calls Iran a "moderating force" in the Middle East, and their foreign minister offers to fly to Tehran, Germany has been trying to bring Syria in from the cold.

Germany is thought to have been authorised by Washington to speak to Syria - the US refuses to talk to Syria.

Germany is to offer a package of economic incentives to move away from Iran - it will include a closer relationship with the EU. The idea has France's backing, which has had a frosty relationship with Syria since the Hariri killing.


Israeli troops raid Baalbek - Syrian army on higest state of alert

Israeli troops have made a snatch into Baalbek, raiding a hospital and arresting a handful of civilians.

About me

  • 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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