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Posts Tagged ‘al jazeera english’

The Battle for Damascus: Decapitating the Security Apparatus

July 18th, 2012 Comments off

The conflict in Syria is escalating, and today’s suicide bombing that killed Syria’s key security leadership marks the revolutionaries’ greatest blow to the regime yet.

By killing Defense Minister Daoud Rajha, Interior Minister Minister Muhammad Ibrahim al-Shaar, Deputy Defense Minister ‘Assaf Shawkat (former security chief and husband of President Asad’s sister Bushra), former Defense Minister (now Deputy Vice President) Hasan Turkmani, and others, the bombing nearly decapitates the security sector; by apparently demonstrating the ability to penetrate the actual crisis management headquarters managing the fight against the rebels, the rebels also show a new level of capability. With the death of Shawkat, the rebels have also struck at the Asad family itself.

It’s probably unwise to proclaim this is the endgame just yet, since deeply rooted security states like Syria are hard to decapitate, new hydra heads growing as older ones are removed, but this is a body blow to the regime.

Among sites following developments live are Al Jazeera English’s live blog; EA Worldview, The Guardian, and of course the #Syria hashtag on Twitter. 

Reports that the regime is issuing gas masks to its forces, if true, raise the specter that a desperate regime might resort to chemical warfare against its own people.

Can we stop debating whether or not it’s a civil war now?


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Clayton Swisher on His AJE Arafat Story

July 4th, 2012 Comments off

I noted earlier today Al Jazeera English’s big story today claiming to have documented the presence of radioactive polonium in Yasser Arafat’s body at the time of his death in 2004.  At AJE’s blogs, reporter Clayton Swisher, who got the story, discusses his experience with the story.

And again full disclosure, as previously noted Clayton is a former colleague of mine from his days at MEI, pre-Al Jazeera English.


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Afghan photographers shoot to glory

June 18th, 2012 Comments off

Al Jazeera English, Afghan photographers shoot to glory:

This interesting article is illustrated with a slideshow of excellent photos.
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Al-Qaeda fighters clash with Yemeni troops

May 31st, 2012 Comments off

Egypt protesters storm Shafiq’s Cairo office

May 30th, 2012 Comments off

Day 2 in Egypt: Live Updates to Follow The Day

May 24th, 2012 Comments off

How to follow Day 2: Live Updates and Live blogging from Day 2 in Egypt’s Presidential elections:


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Links May 13-20 2012

May 21st, 2012 Comments off

Getting back to blogging…



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Links May 6-12 2012

May 13th, 2012 Comments off

My latest column for The National, on Egypt’s presidential race and its political context, is here. I’m on a trip, so there will be very little posting in the next few days.



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The Carnage in Damascus

May 11th, 2012 Comments off

I’ll assess the response to the Egyptian debate (previous two posts) later or more likely in the morning, but I felt I should at least note the bloody bombings in Damascus today. Apparently the bloodiest bombings yet, some 55 dead and possibly climbing, thr Syrian opposition is denying having any role, and of course the Asad regime says this proves what it has been saying all along: the opposition are terrorists. Apparently a sophisticated explosive was used, so of course some are wondering if Al-Qa‘ida is involved; if so, which I have no way of judging, it might lead to more in the West moving away from the idea of support of the resistance. That is all the more reason for the resistance to denounce these bombings (as the Syrian National Council is doing). Video from Al Jazeera English and Syrian State TV:


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Bahrain (and Al Jazeera) accuse foreign media of exaggeration

May 3rd, 2012 Comments off