31 January, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 06/11/2012
SYRIA
Syrian Christians in the war between fundamentalists and secularists, Sunnis and Shiites
by Samir Khalil Samir
Al Qabas, Kuwait's daily newspaper, reports the arrival in Syria of jihadists from Saudi Arabia, Algeria and Pakistan. Among them many are under 18 years of age. Turkey serves as a transit point for weapons and people. A war of fundamentalism against the Alawite Shia and Sunni fundamentalism against the secularism of the Assad dictatorship. The distrust of Christians. The ambiguous West.

Beirut (AsiaNews) - Al-Qabas, the Kuwaiti Arabic-language newspaper, yesterday published an article stating that dozens of Kuwaitis have crossed the Syrian-Turkish border to fight in the jihad alongside the Free Syrian Army (FSA), the 'armed opposition against the regime of Bashar el Assad.

According to sources close to these groups that have arrived in Syria, the offices of the FSA and other jihadists welcome militants from Saudi Arabia, Algeria and Pakistan, provide them with Syrian identity documents, should they be captured by the regular army, and ask about their to leave their real identity documents to the Turkish border.

The FSA gave them weapons, after verifying that they have followed a military training in their countries of origin. Then, they send them into different regions of Syria, wherever necessary, to fight against the regular army. The FSA has also sent back a number of jihadists to their countries because they were under 18 years of age.

For its part, Jordan has arrested two Salafi militants who were trying to get into Syria, also to fight alongside the Islamists.

Meanwhile, the Directorate of Fatwas [in Kuwait], at the Ministry of Waqfs, has issued a fatwa (Islamic legal decision) allowing to anticipate the zakat (obligatory Islamic alms) prior to the original date to refugees and Syria's needy.

 

My comment

I would like to point out some important details:

  • o The information comes from an independent newspaper in Kuwait, whose director, Mohammed Jassem al-Sager has received the International Press Freedom Award, for his fight for human rights. He was also a member of national assembly of Kuwait and President of the Arab parliament. He is anything but an ally of the Syrian regime.
  • o 2. In theArabic text jihâd, means exclusively the armed struggle against the Syrian regime. Many times the term qitâl returns, which means "war", "fight to the death" (the verb qatala means "kill").
  • o 3. The fighters are trained - in their own countries or elsewhere - before being engaged in jihad. Among them are the children, the FSA does not accept them, showing a sense of responsibility.
  • o 4. No shortage of small arms. They are stored in Turkey near the Syrian border.
  • o 5. Turkey contributes to the fight against the Syrian regime not as combatants, but by allowing the passage and the organization.
  • o 6. All these form an alliance of militant Sunni Islamists. The Syrian regime is governed by Alawites (an offshoot of Shiism): So now the fight is between Shiites and Sunnis. In addition, since Syria's regime is secular, the opposition gathers anti-secularists, who are Sunni Wahhabis and Salafis.
  • o 7. This explains the distrust of Christians towards the opposition to the regime. The opposition, which initially was against the dictatorship, torture, injustice and human rights, little by little, has changed to a radical Islamist trend (Muslim Brotherhood and Salafi) to eventually become a struggle between two Muslim tendencies: Sunni and Shia. Between two evils - a secular Baathist dictatorship and the Wahhabi religious dictatorship) Christians prefer the first, which they already know and with whom they have lived for a long time.
  • o 8. The only real solution would be to renounce all dictatorship (secular or religious) and the building of a democratic and liberal state. Unfortunately, in the Arab world, this dream has been realized only in a modest way in Lebanon, perhaps because of the substantial presence of Christians, more prepared for this evolution.
  • o 9. At present, it seems that Syria is unable to achieve that vision. On the other hand, the West, which could have had a positive role, in previous conflicts (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya) has not given an example of fairness and democracy, but rather of following national interests under the guise of democracy.

e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
11/27/2012 SYRIA
Nuncio in Damascus: Do not forget the Syrians and pray for them
11/10/2012 SYRIA
Aleppo: the plight of the people, victims of the conflict between the army and rebels
01/14/2014 VATICAN - SYRIA
Pontifical Academy for Sciences calls for Iranian participation in Geneva II
01/23/2014 PAKISTAN - ISLAM
Pakistan Church promoting a day of prayer for peace
by Jibran Khan
01/14/2013 PAKISTAN
As Islamabad sacks Baluchistan govt because of anti-Shia violence in Quetta, Christians express solidarity
by Jibran Khan

Editor's choices
IRAQ
The children of Mosul and the future: the "five-star" refugee camp
by Bernardo CervelleraIn the garden of the parish of Mar Elia beside the tents there are containers that serve as classrooms for the children and as a library. Another serves as a room for sewing. A children's choir. Fr. Douglas: "Taking care of refugees does not just mean thinking about eating, drinking, medicines, injections, vaccinations ... The displaced persons need to do something and to cultivate hope."
IRAQ
Way of the Cross: the refugees from Mosul beyond the emergency
by Bernardo CervelleraThere are at least half a million people who have taken refuge in Kurdistan to flee from ISIS. In the Shlama Mall at Erbil: 350 people living in the skeleton of a building under construction, with draped sheets and blankets serving as walls. The ordination of a young man, also a refugee, shows that with the flight, there is something that has not been destroyed: the faith, the traditions, the priesthood.
IRAQ - VATICAN
As 'Adopt a Christian from Mosul' continues, Mosul bishop notes that Jesus is born amid refugee containers
by Amel NonaPersecuted by the Islamic state, refugees have lost everything: belongings, home, jobs, school, and their future. Yet, their faith and mission remain strong. For them, almost 900,000 euros have been raised and sent. Pope Francis sends a message of closeness. The campaign continues according to the Patriarch of Baghdad's proposal of fasting and moderation at Christmas and New Year, with the money saved offered to the Christians of Mosul.

Dossier

by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.