Welcome to Kalamna, the student blog of the Hagop Kevorkian Center for Near Eastern Studies at NYU.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Flag of Zion In Homs?

The Angry Arab News Service, the blog page of Middle East academic As'ad Abu Khalil, is known for its wry humor and indiscriminate aim against any and all reactionaries.

For that reason, Abu Khalil is no fan of the self-styled leaders of the Syrian opposition - Syrian National Council and its armed affiliate the Free Syrian Army, accusing both of being fronts for the conservative Muslim Brotherhood and the latter of including ultra-conservative Salafis.

Let there be no confusion: Abu Khalil is as adamant an opponent of the Syrian regime along with every Arab regime (and every Lebanese faction). He simultaneously calls for the downfall of the Syrian regime while criticizing the conservative and reaction groups he accuses of hijacking a sincere uprising (the latter have been able to present themselves as the revolutionary vanguard in great part due to the Syrian regime's widespread arrest of liberal and leftist dissidents).

For a supporter of the Syrian people, Abu Khalil often expresses his frustration that accurately tracking developments in Syria is increasingly harder as both the regime the "Ikhwan opposition" engage, according to him, in mendacious propaganda.

The Syrian regime, of course, has every motive to smear the opposition and deny the destruction and casualties of its unceasing assault. But political oppositions also have an incentive to be histrionic, to dissemble, and to cover their own illegalities. Abu Khalil is not about setting a parallel between the Syrian regime and the opposition, but to state that facts and facts and they should be reported free from charged agendas.

But the Syrian regime may be hard to beat. Abu Khalil recently posted the following image:
It is a doctored image of a rally in Homs where the opposition flag is, of course, mutated into the Israeliflag in keeping with regime discourse that the indigenous uprising is a plot by external enemies to undermine Syria.

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