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Hours before his arrest, Abdelke had signed a petition that averred (here’s where Chrome’s translate option comes in handy) “support to the forces of the revolution who advocate the establishment of a pluralistic democracy” and “desire for a peaceful solution to stop the bloodshed and to preserve national unity and territorial integrity, which involves the departure of Bashar al-Assad and pillars of his regime.


Youssef Abdelke — never hard of him before two minutes ago — but as one who has learned the ways of the World Wide Web, the third minute opens on eternity.

(Reuters) – Syrian government forces have detained a dissident left-wing painter in a new wave of arrests of non-violent critics of President Bashar al-Assad, opposition groups said on Friday.


“A place to share art, uninhibited without a bunch of stupid ass rules. A place to help your fellow page owners grow and succeed. A group to have fun with no dictator shoving shit down your throat and bowing down. A group to be FREE to help as you see fit. A group to rock the fuck on!”


It’s a closed Facebook group, one to which I would apply if I were shooting the local downtrodden as opposed, say, to the leisured, business, and community development classes.

Nonetheless, “Art and FREEDOM”, my soul is with you and your author, Youssef Abdelke.

* * *

I really don’t know why Putin darkens his role in history by keeping in his hand with  the Ayatollah’s Iran and the Assad’s Syria.

* * *

Novelist Daniel Silva has a great deal of fun with the “Russian President” — in fiction, merely a character, never named, nothing more than coincidental with anything or anyone in reality, in his latest best seller The English Girl.

As a fiction writer, Silva’s actually, probably, one of the very best political analysts on the international stage, and while playing that role through his characters and plots, the Russian President looms large and rightly so for the behind-the-curtain strategy pursued by the post-Soviet oligarchs  of the Latest and Greatest in Russian States.

As we know about narcissists and narcissistic hunger and supply, they are ultimately about themselves, and whatever their charms, political and social, may be.  Not that Bashir Assad has enjoyed abundance in dimension, but it’s the Russian President who has been most quiet on the obscenity of a state that deploys jets to suppress, at first, a small challenge to its authority.

While the Syria of 2010 has been destroyed, culturally, socially, structurally, one might note that Russia, in her defense, has ferried both the larger part of its civilian and military presence out of the country — not exactly a show of confidence, that, but not exactly either a show of humanist resolve.

The world wonders at the conundrum that has pit a brutal dictatorship against partially but deeply virulent Islamist forces.  There is in that aspect of Syria’s agony the “no good dog in the fight” and the “black hole” of the Islamic Small Wars constructed of a contempt, hatred, and self-contempt in the inhumanity that draws in military energy and burns without end.

Nearly one hundred thousand dead and four million displaced in Syria’s furnace and neither of two of the most powerful statesmen of our era either cares to or knows how to shut it down.

Instead of the kumbaya “reset” between the states and the federation (how young is Obama?), Putin appears to be draining the former plus NATO by keeping the oven hot while avoiding, rightly, the imposition of another Chechnya in its sphere of influence.  And yet . . . the Assad regime was the Soviet’s monster, and one would think that after 1991 the state would have been concerned with other than filling its pockets in collusion with it for another 22 years.

But that perhaps would have been too caring, too ethical.

Too English.

* * *

While the superpowers dick around with trivial issues like Snowden, Syria, in part, draws to it the “worst of the worst” — or just the most spirited — of fighters representing Shiite and Sunni Islam, those two angry wasps someone left in a bell jar separating their concerns from the much, much greater world surrounding.

On a portion of that, I would blame the west.

We’ve done business, haven’t we, for how many years?

And barely a word, most certainly few, if any, of outrage in regard to humanity and human rights in the contained but also dark medieval quarters of the globe.

So why not leave them — today in Syria, tomorrow perhaps in Egypt or somewhere else — in their own mess?

Whether the President of the Free World or that of the Russian Empire, is it incumbent on either to reorganize a middle east state as a pet humanitarian project?

There are, of course, other ambitions in the mix, much including Iran’s and Qatar’s, but one may one wonder between them whether either will wake up from their dream or with history pass away into it.

* * *

Prestige matters.

As a Jew, I may wonder how global memory will treat of today’s powerful in the days beyond their reclamation by the earth.

Additional Reference

Kasparov, Garry.  “Putin Toys with Obama as Syria Burns and Snowden Runs Free.” The Daily Beast.  July 2, 2013.

Official Site of the Bureau International des Expositions.

RT.  “At least 600 Russians and Europeans fighting alongside Syrian opposition – Putin.”  June 21, 2013.

World Bulletin News Desk.  “Erdogan, Putin discuss Syria and Egypt.”  August 5, 2013.

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