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    Clinton holds out hope Syria’s government will reform


    The difference between the situations in Syria and Libya is that the Syrian government might still come around and pursue a reform agenda, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Friday.

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    Why Does Syria See a Threat Coming from Tiny Lebanon?


     

    Syria long has been accused of stirring trouble in the territories of its neighbors by exporting unwanted people across porous borders — Kurdish separatists into Turkey, Sunni insurgents into Iraq and Palestinian militants and Al-Qaeda sympathizers into Lebanon.

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    Robert Fisk: 'The Arab awakening began not in Tunisia this year, but in Lebanon in 2005'


    Revolutions don't start with a single dramatic event, such as the destruction of a church or a man's self-immolation.

    Friday, 15 April 2011

     

    First, to reports from the revolutionary front lines in Syria, in the same imperfect, but brave, English in which they were written less than 24 hours ago...

     

    "Yesterday morning I went to the square to demonstrate, I arranged it with guys on Facebook, I don't know them, but we share the same ambition of freedom, that night I was awake until 6am watching the news, it was horrible what's happening in Syria, the security forces slaughter people as if aniamals !!!...

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    Statement by the Press Secretary on Syria


    THE WHITE HOUSE
    Office of the Press Secretary
     
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    April 12, 2011
     
    Statement by the Press Secretary on Syria
     
    We are deeply concerned by reports that Syrians who have been wounded by their government are being denied access to medical care. The escalating repression by the Syrian government is outrageous, and the United States strongly condemns  the continued efforts to suppress peaceful protesters.

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    Dark Secrets The sordid history of Syria's collaboration with Qaddafi.


     

    Dark Secrets
    The sordid history of Syria's collaboration with Qaddafi.
    Mar 21, 2011, Vol. 16, No. 26 • By LEE SMITH

     

    The uprisings sweeping the Middle East have started to blow down some very dark doors​—​the doors that lead to the dungeons and prisons where Arab security services do their work.In Alexandria and Cairo, Egyptian protesters broke into the offices of state security, where they discovered some of the tools and torture devices used to make prisoners more pliant. Perhaps more important, they unearthed files detailing the nature of the work, and on whose behalf it was done.
     
     

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    Prime Minister-designate briefs UN envoy on efforts to form new government


    Lebanon: Prime Minister-designate briefs UN envoy on efforts to form new government


    22 February 2011 –The United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon met today with Prime Minister-designate Najib Miqati, who briefed him on his continuing efforts concerning the formation of a new government.

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    Obama ripped in Congress on Egypt, Lebanon


    Obama ripped in Congress over Egypt, Lebanon

    WASHINGTON — US President Barack Obama's administration was the target of harsh criticism in Congress Wednesday for not doing enough to support democratic reforms in Egypt and Lebanon.

    "In both Egypt and Lebanon, we have failed to effectively leverage US assistance in support of peaceful, pro-democracy forces and to help build strong, accountable, independent, democratic institutions as a bulwark against the instability that is now spreading throughout much of the region," said Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen at a hearing of the Foreign Affairs Committee she heads.

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    Clinton: Hezbollah govt in Lebanon bad for US ties


    Clinton: Hezbollah govt in Lebanon bad for US ties

    Jan. 25, 2011, 1:13 p.m. EST
    Associated Press

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton warned Tuesday that formation of a Hezbollah-dominated government in Lebanon will mean changes in the U.S. relations with the country.

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    STATEMENT BY SENATOR McCAIN REGARDING THE CRISIS IN LEBANON


    STATEMENT BY SENATOR McCAIN REGARDING THE CRISIS IN LEBANON
     
    Washington, D.C. ­– U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) made the following statement regarding the current crisis in Lebanon:
     
    “The collapse of Lebanon's democratic government clearly demonstrates the desire of Hezbollah to thwart justice and rule Lebanon despite losing the last election.  The threat of violence has no place in a democracy. 

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    Obama calls Saudi king, voices solidarity on Lebanon


    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama called Saudi King Abdullah on Tuesday, wishing him a speedy recovery from recent surgery and saying he wanted to keep working with Saudi Arabia and others to stabilize the situation in Lebanon, the White House said.

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    Heroic Journalism in Lebanon? Ex-Envoy Disagrees


    As ambassador to Lebanon from 2004 to 2008, I was the person whom Al Akhbar’s editorial chairman, Ibrahim al-Amine, hoped to upset every morning with his newspaper’s coverage (“A Rarity in the Region, a Lebanese Paper Dares to Provoke,” news article, Dec. 29).

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    US: any step taken with Syria will not be at Lebanon’s expense


    Commenting on the recent appointment of a US ambassador to Syria US ambassador to Lebanon Maura Connelly said on Friday : “President Barack Obama had announced in June of 2009, his intention to restore the U.S. ambassador to Syria. Following the nomination of Robert Ford on February 16, 2010, Obama waited 10 months for the US Senate to take the necessary measures in confirming his nomination .

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    Obama Names First Syrian Ambassador in Six Years


    U.S. President Barack Obama has used a controversial strategy to appoint the first U.S. ambassador to Syria in nearly six years.

    The White House announced Wednesday it had appointed career diplomat Robert Ford to the post.

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    Clinton stressed to UN enovoy US commitment to Lebanon’s sovereignty


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    President Obama nominates Maura Connelly Ambassador to Lebanon


    WASHINGTON – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key administration posts:

    • Maura Connelly, Ambassador to the Republic of Lebanon, Department of State
     

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    Syria accused of arming Hezbollah


    Hezbollah is running weapons, including surface-to-surface missiles, from secret arms depots in Syria to its bases in Lebanon, according to security sources.

    The Times has been shown satellite images of one of the sites, a compound near the town of Adra, northeast of Damascus, where militants have their own living quarters, an arms storage site and a fleet of lorries reportedly used to ferry weapons into Lebanon.

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    Readout of President Obama's meeting with PM Saad Hariri


    The President met today with Prime Minister Saad Hariri of Lebanon.  The President commended the Prime Minister for his leadership and for carrying on his father’s legacy, and congratulated him on Lebanon’s term as President of the U.N. Security Council, where Lebanon is contributing to upholding international peace and security.

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    S&P Upgrades Lebanon on Bank System


    Standard  & Poor's Ratings Services raised Lebanon's sovereign-credit
    ratings and gave  them a positive outlook because of banking resilience and the
    expectation of  political stability in the medium term.

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    The Murdered Fathers Club (David Schenker) Weekly Standard


    On Saturday, Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri traveled to Damascus for a meeting with Syrian president Bashar Asad, the man widely believed to have ordered the assassination of his father, former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri. The 2005 murder sparked the Cedar Revolution, a mass protest movement that resulted in the end of the thirty-year Syrian military occupation of Lebanon, and swept the pro-West March 14th coalition to power. Although March 14 again triumphed over the Iranian and Syrian-backed Hizballah-led opposition in elections this past June, Washington's allies in Beirut are now facing a crisis. Hariri's trip to Damascus represents the return of Syrian influence to Lebanon, and perhaps, the end of the Cedar Revolution.
     

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    INTERNATIONAL CRISIS GROUP - NEW REPORT Reshuffling the Cards? (II): Syria’s New Hand


    Damascus/Brussels, 16 December 2009: U.S. diplomatic engagement with Syria risks losing momentum if it fails to build upon several potentially promising changes in Damascus’s policy.
     

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