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View Diary: BREAKING: Kofi Annan resigns as envoy to Syria (37 comments)

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  •  Only a Ceasefire will End the Nightmare in Syria (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chuckvw, mickT
    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/...

    Unending violence, sectarian concerns and the geopolitics over Iran threaten to destroy Syria’s territorial integrity and plunge the region into a bloody conflict

    By Patrick Seale

    August 01, 2012 "Gulf News" -- Once one of the most solid states in the Middle East and a key pivot of the regional power structure, Syria is now facing wholesale destruction. The consequences of the unfolding drama are likely to be disastrous for Syria’s territorial integrity, for the well-being of its population, for regional peace, and for the interests of external powers deeply involved in the crisis.

    The most immediate danger is that the fighting in Syria, together with the current severe pressure being put on Syria’s Iranian ally, will provide the spark for a wider conflagration from which no one will be immune.

    How did it come to this? Every actor in the crisis bears a share of responsibility. Syria is the victim of the fears and appetites of its enemies as well as its own leaders’ mistakes.

    •  Why don't you write your own diary? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mircead, mookins

      Here you are again 5 minutes and 54 seconds after I post the news that Annan resigns, with the latest trash from the pro-Qaddafi, pro-Assad, pro-Putin [mis]information clearing house. How the hell is that a response to my diary?

      You want to reprint this pro-Assad trash on the Daily Kos, why don't you do it in your own fucking dairy?

      Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

      by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 09:35:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You didn't read the article did you? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        chuckvw
        How did it come to this? Every actor in the crisis bears a share of responsibility. Syria is the victim of the fears and appetites of its enemies as well as its own leaders’ mistakes.

        With hindsight, it can be seen that President Bashar Al Assad missed the chance to reform the tight security state he inherited in 2000 from his father. Instead of recognising — and urgently addressing — the thirst for political freedoms, personal dignity and economic opportunity, which were the messages of the ‘Damascus Spring’ of his first year in power, he screwed the lid down ever more tightly.

        Suffocating controls over every aspect of Syrian society were reinforced, and made harder to bear by the blatant corruption and privileges of the few and the hardships suffered by the many. Physical repression became routine. Instead of cleaning up his security apparatus, curbing police brutality and improving prison conditions, he allowed them to remain as gruesome and deplorable as ever.

        •  This was written yesterday, he is not talking (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          UnaSpenser, mircead, mookins

          Annan's resignation, and no, I don't hurry up and read all the crap you post to my diary.

          Write your own fucking dairy!

          With hindsight, it can be seen that President Bashar Al Assad missed the chance to reform
          What a load of crap you are spewing.

          How about how he is also missing the chance not to drop cluster bombs on civilians?

          How about he is missing the chance not to mow down protesters with helicopter gunships?

          How about he is missing the chance not to shell Idlib, Dara, Homs, Hama, Aleppo & Damascus with long range artillery?

          Why are you here and so diligent in trying to prettify a mass murderer?

          Have you no shame?  

          Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

          by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 09:57:28 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  In you words: prettify a mass murderer? (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            chuckvw, Russgirl, BradyB

            The article states:

            .........he screwed the lid down ever more tightly...........

            Instead of cleaning up his security apparatus, curbing police brutality and improving prison conditions, he allowed them to remain as gruesome and deplorable as ever.

            You need to start engaging your readers who disagree with you instead of demonizing them. Other readers who might be on the fence or looking for info on this issue can't take you seriously when you label readers with disagreements as posting:
            the latest trash from the pro-Qaddafi, pro-Assad, pro-Putin [mis]information clearing house. How the hell is that a response to my diary?
            That source you just trashed was obviously not what you labeled it as. So why not actually discuss that source instead of trashing it and the commenter?

            Aren't diaries meant to be places for dialogue and the sharing of information?

            •  Here's what the [mis]information clearing house (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mookins

              had to say about the Libyan Revolution:

              No rapes, no African mercenaries, no helicopter gun ships or bombers, and only 110 ten deaths prior to the launch of the NATO bombing campaign, every reason was based on a lie.

              Today according to the Libyan Red Crescent Society, over 1,100 civilians have been killed by NATO bombs including over 400 women and children. Over 6,000 Libyan civilians have been injured or wounded by the bombing, many very seriously.

              1,100 civilians killed by NATO bombs? And this was on July 23, 2011. 15 months later when all the bombing was done, HRW found that NATO had killed 72 civilians, or how about this:
              Libya under Col. Gadaffi hasn’t invaded their neighbors.
              Chad might see things differently.
              This is how they saw things in Libya:
              The Libyan people have the best, free public health system in the Arab world. The Libyan people have the best, free public education system in the Arab world. Most Libyan families own their own home and most Libyan families own their own automobile.
              And best of all
              The majority of the Libyan people are rallying behind the Libyan government and “the leader”, Muammar Gadaffi, with over one million people demonstrating in support on July 1 in Tripoli, the capital of Libya.
              Like I said, ...

              Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

              by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 10:49:18 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Meh. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Russgirl, Claudius Bombarnac, BradyB

                Have fun. I'm done reading your diaries. The conflict you seem to enjoy was amusing for a while but the constant refrains of Pro-Assad kossaks and other accusations have worn thin. People are always going to disagree with you. It doesn't necessarily mean that they are on the other side.

              •  We've been through this before (0+ / 0-)
                Amnesty questions Libyan mass rape

                Human rights organisations have cast doubt on claims of mass rape and other abuses perpetrated by forces loyal to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi, which have been widely used to justify Nato's war in Libya.

                Nato leaders, opposition groups and the media have produced a stream of stories since February 15 claiming the Gaddafi regime has ordered mass rapes, used foreign mercenaries and employed helicopters against civilian protesters.

                An investigation by Amnesty International has failed to find evidence for these human rights violations and in many cases has discredited or cast doubt on them.

                It also found indications that on several occasions Benghazi rebels appeared to have knowingly made false claims or manufactured evidence.

                •  See, Gadaffi wasn't so bad after all. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Clay Claiborne

                  Silly Libyans.

                •  Alleged Libyan rape victim struggling to start (0+ / 0-)

                  anew in America
                  From CNN:

                  By Suzanne Malveaux and Moni Basu, CNN
                  updated 3:17 PM EST, Tue December 13, 2011

                  Washington (CNN) -- Hers is a struggle shared by all freshly arrived refugees in the United States. Learning English. Getting a job. Adapting to American culture.

                  But starting life anew has been that much tougher for Eman al-Obeidi, the woman who came to embody the cruelty of Moammar Gadhafi's regime in the midst of Libya's brutal civil war. She lives every day with the scars of the rape she alleges was committed by Gadhafi's thugs.

                  Sometimes, she said in an exclusive interview with CNN, she gets so depressed that she doesn't leave her apartment for days. Other times, she can't even get out of bed for three or four days.

                  "I cry all the time just like little children," she says wiping dry her moist eyes. "And I always smile, too."

                  Al-Obeidi found relief on these shores when she arrived here last summer. She finally felt safe, unlike in Libya, where she felt constantly in danger and her family was threatened.

                  But she has found it hard to make ends meet. She said she has been going to the employment office for four months but job opportunities have been slim.

                  "When I came, I never imagined life would be this hard," she said. "As we say in Libya, you have to kill yourself working. I wish there was work. There are no work opportunities."

                  Her family in Libya sends her $300 a month. Without that, she said, she would not have made it so far.

                  Out of desperation, last week, al-Obeidi bought a one-way ticket from Colorado to Washington with money from an Iraqi family. She had all but $100 in her bag; she used $65 of it and took a taxi to the Libyan Embassy in Washington.

                  She came with a distrust of politicians and diplomats but with hope in her heart that her compatriots would not turn her away. But Libyan Ambassador Ali Aujali, she said, spoke to her like a father.

                  He offered her an educational stipend. And health insurance.

                  "It means everything to me," she said, opening up an envelope containing check for $1,800.

                  "It's not about whether it's a lot or little. It's about the time that I got it," she said.

                  It was like winning the lottery. Otherwise, she might have wound up on the street in a few days.

                  Aujali said he thought al-Obeidi needs help.

                  "I told her one thing," he said. "You have to close the doors to the past and look to the future. She cannot live in misery the rest of her life."

                  Al-Obeidi first caught the world's attention in March when she burst into Tripoli's Rixos Hotel, where foreign journalists were staying, and publicly accused members of Gadhafi's forces of gang-raping her.

                  She was hysterical. She screamed that she had been taken from a checkpoint and held against her will for two days while being beaten and raped by 15 of Gadhafi's militiamen.

                  Security officials said al-Obeidi was "mentally ill" and was being taken to a "hospital." They dragged her unceremoniously to a waiting white car and whisked her away. She wasn't heard from for more than a week, but eventually in media interviews, she spoke of her ordeal.

                  She fled to Tunisia in May with the help of a defected military officer and the Libyan rebels, then in the thick of civil war. She found temporary sanctuary in Qatar before being granted asylum in the United States.

                  Al-Obeidi arrived in New York at the end of July and with the help of a refugee agency, she was resettled in Colorado.

                  She has no family in the United States, and she would perhaps like to return to her homeland one day.

                  "Of course, there is no one who doesn't wish to go back to his country," she said. "But I am not mentally ready for that. I also feel personally I am not ready to integrate back into society, I am not ready. I feel life is hard for me because it is different -- in culture ... language -- everything is different here."

                  Al-Obeidi cannot know the twists and turns her life will take from here. She wants to finish schooling. Marry. Five years from now, she pictures herself as a mother.

                  One thing she knows though. If and when she returns home, it will be to a Libya without Gadhafi.

                  She just wishes Gadhafi had met proper justice. She felt his killers did him a favor by ending his life. In the eyes of some, he became a martyr.

                  "They shouldn't have given him this honor," she said.

                  He should have been tried for his crimes, she said -- for what he did to the people of Libya, for what he did to her.

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 05:57:35 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Libyan rebels say captured cell phone videos show (0+ / 0-)

                  rape, torture

                  From CNN:

                  June 16, 2011|By Sara Sidner, CNN

                  On the front lines of Libya's war, rebel fighters say they are finding more than weapons on captured or killed soldiers loyal to ruler Moammar Gadhafi.

                  Rebels say they have confiscated cell phones that contain video showing Gadhafi loyalists raping women and torturing people.

                  CNN has obtained a copy of a video shot on a cell phone that appears to show a woman being sexually abused. The person who gave the video to CNN says it was on a cell phone that was confiscated from a Gadhafi loyalist.

                  It shows two men in civilian clothes standing over a naked woman who is bent over with her face on the floor.

                  The man standing behind her is sodomizing her with what appears to be a broomstick. "I can't bear it! I can't bear it!" the woman cries.

                  "Let's push it farther," a male voice says off-camera.

                  "No, no, that's enough!" the woman begs.

                  Eventually, one of the men puts his sock-covered foot on her face. In Arab culture, that is considered a major insult. But in this case, it pales in comparison to what the victim is already enduring.

                  Arabic speakers who listened to the video at CNN's request say the voices have Tripoli accents. There is no date on the video and the men in it are not wearing military uniforms.

                  CNN has been unable to verify the video's authenticity, when it was shot, or by whom. The person who gave it to CNN asked not to be identified for fear of being punished by Libya's conservative society.

                  The Gadhafi government did not respond to CNN requests for comment on the allegations of abuse.

                  But officials have said in response to similar accusations in the past that the government has not been able to verify the claims and would "welcome" a fact-finding mission.

                  An opposition spokesman says the video illustrates a pattern of abuse.

                  "We were able to confirm that rape was used as a weapon of war because it was systematic," rebel spokesman Abdullah al-Kabeir said.

                  The rebels have many videos showing other types of torture, and a few depict rape, he said. He did not know exactly how many videos there were showing abuse.

                  One of the most famous faces of Libya's revolution, Eman al-Obeidy, dramatically claimed in March she had been gang-raped by pro-Gadhafi forces. She has since fled the country.

                  A Libyan psychologist who has conducted an investigation of her own says al-Obeidy's case is not unique.

                  Siham Sergewa says she has evidence of hundreds of cases of rape by pro-Gadhafi troops.

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:03:16 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  Did Libyan Video of a Journalist’s Rape Get (0+ / 0-)

                  Posted on YouTube? [Warning: Graphic Images]

                  Here's something truly horrifying: a video that appears to depict a woman being raped in Benghazi, Libya has surfaced on YouTube. It's already been taken down, but now the question is: who raped her, who posted it on the internet, and will she ever get justice?

                  The video is titled, in Arabic, "Original video of foreign journalist being raped in Benghazi." We captured it before it was removed, but we're not going to post it here. Instead, we'll summarize and post a few (non-graphic, non-victim-identifying) screenshots. If you don't want to learn more about what appears to be a brutal rape, you should just stop here.

                  Did Libyan Video of a Journalist's Rape Get Posted on YouTube? [Warning: Graphic Images]The video appears to depict three young men assaulting the woman. Here are two of them.

                  Did Libyan Video of a Journalist's Rape Get Posted on YouTube? [Warning: Graphic Images]Here's part of the face of the third. The video is poor-quality.

                  Did Libyan Video of a Journalist's Rape Get Posted on YouTube? [Warning: Graphic Images]The victim is mostly naked. The men fondle and kiss her breasts, and appear to penetrate her. One dangles his penis near her face. Note: this image is the same as the (pixelated) one above. It appears to depict the woman's side and arm and her attacker's head.

                  Did Libyan Video of a Journalist's Rape Get Posted on YouTube? [Warning: Graphic Images]She appears to be semi-conscious, possibly drugged.

                  The video was posted yesterday by a user named libya19692011. He's posted one other video, in August of last year — it's still available, and appears to depict some sort of gun battle. His username seems to be a reference to Gaddafi, who ruled Libya from 1969 until 2011. libya19692011 also has a Twitter feed, under the name Ahmed Aldorssi. His two English-language tweets, both from January 9, 2011, read "libya" and "long life the king of africa." Another tweet, from February 2011, reads "Great Jamihiriya," a name Gaddafi coined for Libya. People familiar with Middle Eastern politics who have seen the video speculate that it may have been made by Gaddafi loyalists, which would be in keeping with Aldorssi's tweets.

                  Benghazi is also the home city of Iman al-Obeidi, the woman who accused Gaddafi supporters of raping her last March. She said they targeted her because Benghazi was a rebel center. It's also where 41 Gaddafi loyalists are currently on trial for "supporting the Kadhafi regime in its attempts to crush the popular revolt, killing people, breaking of national unity, as well as helping prisoners to escape and setting up criminal gangs." The trial started Sunday, two days before the video was posted. We can't know if the two are connected, but it certainly seems like any remaining loyalists in Benghazi could be full of rage right now. And although there's no identification yet of anybody in the video, the footage does show one man's face — and if Ahmed Aldorssi is the poster's real name, he should be easy to find. If anything good comes of the recording and posting of this disgusting crime, maybe it will be that the criminals actually get prosecuted.

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:09:20 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  That video doesn't prove a thing. It could have (0+ / 0-)

                    been done by anyone at any time. The attackers are very young (look to be under 20) and dressed in bright t-shirts.

                    The current site that has the video says it is the rebels who are guilty. I don't believe it is related to the conflict.

                    There is a perfect picture of one of the attackers if someone in Libya wishes to pursue it.

                •  Rape used 'as a weapon' in Libya (0+ / 0-)

                  From AJE:

                  Doctors in city of Ajdabiya say pro-Gaddafi forces have used rape as a "weapon of war".
                  Last Modified: 28 Mar 2011 05:22

                  As Libya's opposition fighters push west, doctors are uncovering more victims from the front line.

                  Several doctors say they have found Viagra tablets and condoms in the pockets of dead pro-Gaddafi fighters, alleging that they were using rape as a weapon of war.

                  They say they have been treating female rape survivors who were allied with pro-democracy forces.

                  Furthermore, 175 people, including doctors, have been reported missing from Ajdabiya, and many have now been found to have been killed.

                  Al Jazeera's Sue Turton reports from Ajdabiya.

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:18:39 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Al Jazeera was the first "news" agency to (0+ / 0-)

                    publish the "Viagra" story. Since the events in Egypt, Al Jazeera has lost much of it's credibility. Mainly due to it's reporting of Libya and now Syria. Six of their reporters have resigned due to it's biased reporting.

                    Qatar was a major funder and supplier of arms and military "advisers" to both Libya and Syria.

                    Breaking the Arab News

                    AUGUST 2, 2012

                    While civil war rages on the Syrian battlefield between regime loyalists and myriad rebel factions, another battle is taking place in the media world. Al Arabiya and Al Jazeera, the two Gulf-based channels that dominate the Arabic news business, have moved to counter Syrian regime propaganda, but have ended up distorting the news almost as badly as their opponents. In their bid to support the Syrian rebels' cause, these media giants have lowered their journalistic standards, abandoned rudimentary fact-checks, and relied on anonymous callers and unverified videos in place of solid reporting.

                    Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya were founded by members of the Qatari and Saudi royal families, respectively, and their coverage of Syria faithfully reflects the political positions of their backers.
                    ...
                     But the real loss here is for Al Jazeera, a channel that was followed by tens of millions of Arab viewers last year at the height of the Arab uprisings and is today a shadow of its former self. After I wrote about the station's bias in favor of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood last month, more than a dozen of the channel's employees confirmed the fact to me in emails.

                    Al Jazeera employs the same tactics in its coverage of the Syrian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a part of the domestic opposition movement, as it does with the Brotherhood's Egyptian counterpart. Arabic-language Al Jazeera had earlier assigned its Syria desk to Ahmed Ibrahim, the brother of Anas al-Abdah, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood-dominated Syrian National Council (SNC). Ibrahim goes by a different name in order to avoid being affiliated with his brother. As a result of this relationship, according to several Al Jazeera insiders, Brotherhood-friendly analysts are frequently invited to air their views. For instance, SNC member Mohammad Aloush, a familiar guest on Al Jazeera, published a long op-ed on the channel's website stating that the new Syrian Muslim Brotherhood covenant is a "message of assurance" to the Syrian people and that "nothing better has been presented."
                    ...

                •  Security Council criticised over rape in Libya (0+ / 0-)

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:23:57 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  It's still going on (0+ / 0-)
                    Torture, Rape in Prisons Under Libya's New Government
                    Rights officials say rape, torture, and summary executions are widespread in Libya's prisons under the post-Qaddafi regime.
                    1/28/2012

                    The UN's top human rights official said Friday that Libya's transitional government must take control of its prisons and prevent further atrocities against detainees.

                    “There's torture, extrajudicial executions, rape of both men and women,” UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay told the Associated Press.

                    Pillay says she is particularly concerned about sub-Saharan African detainees whom the brigades automatically brand as fighters for the late Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi.

                    Briefing the UN Security Council about Libya on Wednesday, she demanded action from the world community.

                •  Libyan woman claims rape by 15 of Gaddafi's men (0+ / 0-)

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:26:43 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                •  And Finally (0+ / 0-)

                  This is also from Amnesty, but 6 months after the report you choose:

                  For women, the quick evolution of anti-government protests into a fully
                  fledged armed conflict decreased their frontline participation and visibility, although many contributed to opposition efforts and suffered as a result. Al-
                  Gaddafi forces arrested women during the conflict and held several of them incommunicado at unrecognized places of detention. Some were beaten and otherwise ill-treated amid reports of rape.

                  Remember history, Clay Claiborne, Director Vietnam: American Holocaust - narrated by Martin Sheen

                  by Clay Claiborne on Thu Aug 02, 2012 at 06:46:34 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

        •  the point is that this diary is about the Annan (3+ / 0-)

          resignation. If you want to have a conversation about another aspect of the Syria situation, make a diary of your own. Don't hijack this one.

          •  My post is directly responsive to this diary (0+ / 0-)

            From this diary:

               

            My consultations with the League of Arab States Secretary-General are under way with a view to the prompt appointment of a successor who can carry on this crucial peacemaking effort. I remain convinced that yet more bloodshed is not the answer; each day of it will only make the solution more difficult while bringing deeper suffering to the country and greater peril to the region.

                Tragically, the spiral of violence in Syria is continuing. The hand extended to turn away from violence in favour of dialogue and diplomacy - as spelled out in the Six-Point Plan - has not been not taken, even though it still remains the best hope for the people of Syria. Both the Government and the opposition forces continue to demonstrate their determination to rely on ever-increasing violence. In addition, the persistent divisions within the Security Council have themselves become an obstacle to diplomacy, making the work of any mediator vastly more difficult.

                The UN remains committed to pursue through diplomacy an end to the violence and a Syrian-led solution that meets the legitimate democratic aspirations of its people. This can only succeed – indeed any peacemaking effort can only prosper – when the parties to the violence make a firm commitment to dialogue, and when the international community is strongly united in support.

          •  So the reasons for the resignation of (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mickT, Claudius Bombarnac

            Annan are irrelevant to his resignation? Huh?

      •  If you think he (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Russgirl, mickT, Claudius Bombarnac

        writes "pro-Assad" trash, your diaries may well be perceived as "pro-war", "pro-Saudi Arabia" trash.   Just saying....

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