"To the impartial eye, the world not only seems an unlikely one-off phenomenon, but a constant strain on reason. If reason exists, that is, if a neutral reason exists. So speaks the voice from within. So speaks Joker's voice." - Jostein Gaarder

Monday, February 27, 2006

3touna al-tofouleh...

جينا نعيدكم... بالعيد منسألكم
ليش ما في عنا... لا عياد ولا زينة
يا عالم
أرضي محروقة
أرضي حرية مسروقة

سمانا عمتحلم... تسأل الأيام
وين الشمس الحلوة... ورفوف الحمام
يا عالم
أرضي محروقة
أرضي حرية مسروقة

أرضي زغيرة... متلي زغيرة
ردولا السلام... اعطونا الطفولة

اعطونا الطفولة
اعطونا الطفولة
اعطونا الطفولة
اعطونا... اعطونا... اعطونا السلام
ريمي بندلي - اعطونا الطفولة


A 4 year old child, chanted this song in 1984, in war-torn leabnon.
Rimi Bandali, the Miracle.

Most Syrians and Lebanese grew up on her voice singing "3assel weshak ya 2amar"...

I know I did.

All through this morning I was obsessing with her, I found 5 of her songs on the net.

3touna al-tofouleh
Teer w 3alli ya 7amam
Imany A7la
La Tibky

And my personal all time favorite..
Baba

U remember "Baba", her dialogue song with her father Rene Bandali. I learned the "Fast Forward" and "Rewind" buttons on our recorder for that song.

Rimi Bandali, she's the pure essence of childhood in each one of us, her voice awakes every single feeling from that time when u'd still be peeing in ur bed.

Awakes the "Tofuleh al-Musharradeh" in each one of us..

We're all still children, u can't really grow up in these countries... u just grow older.. but never grow up inside. I donno if that's a good thing.
People call that growing up too quickly, but, really, it's more like, NEVER growing up. Deep inside, not letting go of all these strings, living ur life trying to achieve ur childhood. cuz u never really had one.
40 years worth of generations in Syria and Lebanon will live their lives to achieve their childhood...

All of us...
Lebanon a country, a childhood of War.
Syria a country, a childhood of Silence.

Miniatures of Me...

Zena's post triggered my own nostalgia, She was talking about her 7th grade old Scrap Book...

I have a 7th grade old drawer, 2 actually...
Drawers of everything... small details most ppl wouldn't even notice... but to a sicko like me, they capture a moment, they capture a feeling... I have a gift of recalling feelings, vividly... that's why I hold on to every little thing that can help me, a bus ticket, a chocolate from a friend... or an old paper with a French homework scrambled on it...

I still have my cousin's piano recital brochure, I have a plane ticket Latakia-Cairo-Latakia dated June 28th 2002...

I have the pen I did my prove [9th grade] exams with... I still have my bakaloria pen...

I have the only copy of a Magazine we edited as a school homework in 10th grade, I still laugh hysterically when I read it...

I have 3 papers of the only attempt I had to write a journal, 3 days... everytime I read them I wish I had a journal... bas I know I couldn't write one, it'd be too freaking painful.

Italian Corner, l'Express bills... Laundry bills...

Placebo gig ticket, loads of phone cards and little stuff from Egypt.

All the scraps and drafts, chaotic, idiotic but youthful and full of life, papers, projects, drafts for change... projects to make syria [what we thought] a better place... written with hundreds of names I can't remember half of em nowو throughout hundreds of nights of vodka and dreaming.
A scrap from Al-Thawra newspaper calling for the supervisors of al-Mahaba festival to boycott Lebanese artists...

My Grades Sheets [jala2aty] since first class, since kindergarten...

A bag, with all the clothes price tags I could get...

My Tishreen Basketball club card...

Up on the attic, I have all my paintings in Beirut, the place where I used to paint... I still find it weird that I never really painted unless I was in Beirut, at my dad's. Lots of papers with a sun, river and mountains... Israeli airplanes and Syrian air force bombing them. God with a satanic look, Family, Friends, people I don't know. Meaningless lines of a 4 years old kid.

Each one of these things is someway or another a part of me, they're all in core miniatures of me, my life…


This is what I do, when it gets hard "to be a human", this is what I do... for when it feels lonely and fucked up, I can open my drawer and look at a postcard that reads...

حبيبنا يزن
ونحن نرحل من خيبة إلى خيبة
هل تسمح لنا أن نقاسمك هذا النجاح؟
فرحنا
وكأن الناجح نحن



I opened this drawer today, to put a small Egypt flag, a small red booklet from Cairo Airport Duty Free, and an "Astra Travel" airplane ticket case... another set of feelings... another part of me.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

What about Armenians?!

I promised 2 friends to publish this essay...

That's Why...

Until the first decades of the twentieth century, Armenians were doomed to extinction, especially after they had become a minority even in their own home country where they were supposed to be the majority. "The only way to solve the Armenian problem is to smash the Armenians themselves," is a famous statement announced by Sultan Al- Ahmar (red). Applying the preceding declaration began in 1915 when the Turk leaders decided to annihilate the Armenians. That was actually the first annihilation in the twentieth century in which 1'500'000 person was brutally slaughtered. Invading Armenia, their country, the following dispersion, and diffusion all lead to their being found in all around the world.

If murdering a single person is inhumane, then assassinating a whole nation is considerably more. However, those Turk culprits invented many false excuses to commit their unauthorized genocide. The first pretext was that, "Armenia always calls for the support of powerful countries as well as nagging because of worthless motivations," Sultan Al-Ahmar pointed. As Armenia had been occupied by the Ottoman Empire, asking for liberty, which is everybody's right, must not be considered nagging. On the other hand, although the other countries which had been occupied by the same empire did ask for liberty, no such crimes were committed elsewhere. The second pretext was that, "Armenians wish the victory of our enemies with whom they conspire against us. Thus, we "WERE FORCED" to put legal actions into effect in a harsh military manner," the Ottoman government declared. Facts do invalidate the previously mentioned excuse. Since Armenians lived in Anadole, which was too far away from the Ottoman Empire borders, cooperating with the empire's enemies was impossible. Incontrovertibly, there were other false, factless excuses but writing them all changes words into lines and lines into paragraphs.

What happened in that genocide cannot be summarized in one paragraph. Still, few tiny examples help to bring the pitiful view back. Some people in Istanbul were reported the following incident: A woman threw her newborn baby in a deep well to avoid seeing him murdered heartlessly by some Turk evildoers. Another incident was written in the Horizon Newspaper in the 5th of September, 1915, "the Turkish plan to annihilate the Armenians is still going on. From Istanbul, the Turks kicked out many Armenian men out of which 10'000 were assassinated in Izmid Mountains." This paragraph gives you, dear reader, only two examples. However, there are still other innumerable events that altogether changed Armenia into a bloodbath. According to the Turks, in spite of all their merciless deeds, naming what happened annihilation is not reasonable. It is no more than warlike actions rather than a human genocide, they believe.

The genocide took place 91 years ago. That is why many of you, dear readers, think that we, as Armenians, had better stop asking for compensations because what happened in 1915 injured only those who lived in that period. In fact, the contemporary generation still badly undergoes homesickness and dispersion to the extent that whatever you go, Armenians are scattered. Another misconception of yours is that Armenians scorn Turkey as a whole. Well, this is a misapprehension because we only disdain those who murdered our ancestors. Towards the present Turkish generation, the only feeling we have is admonition as there has been no official confession of the crime yet. The admission for which we hanger leads to giving our land back, first, and too much money in reparation, second. Still, no matter how the land they return were immeasurable or the billions they pay were incalculable, this issue is abstract rather than material. The sheer imagination of the vindictive manners by which those innocent Armenians were undeservedly slaughtered makes any non-Armenian person feel sympathy and compassion whoever the butchers were.

As a conclusion,
denouncing the previous annihilations leads to avoid future ones. That is why this essay was written and that is why the whole world should be aware of what happened and as a result, disapprove it. We dedicate this piece of writing to each and every forcibly displaced, unfairly expatriated, and nostalgic immigrant who suffers pain and endures the difficulties of life with hopes to survive, transfer their language and tradition to the following generations, and live to tell the tale.

By: Tsoleir Antonian, Madonna Kaloustian.



I will comment on this later... meanwhile... plz leave UR comments, and reactions..

Thursday, February 23, 2006

My Very Own Fairy Tale..

I've found my fairy tale.

I've found that person who can understand the exact delicate feeling of mine, the person who can vividly describe it for me, because she's been living it too for 19years, like me...

Just when u decide to take a pause and rethink life.

A Kurdish princess? Syrian, Egyptian or Lebanese? All of them?...
A "Royal" look of scorn is her answer to such a question...
A Human, that's how she'd introduce herself... or A Goddess, in core there's no actual difference...

her favorite lines would be, "Life's not fair, but we are", "inta kelma ma3naha ana" and "A7a"...

Is it enough to know that u both used to decide your future by counting sidewalk bricks to say you're "soulmates"?!.. Well, I have my answer...

...أنت
أنت كلمة معناها أنا
أنت
أنا
عندما أحببتك توقف عالمي عن الدوران
...اتحدنا
و أخترق الصمت الكلام
لم يعد هناك داع للكلام

أنا
أحبك
أنت
في ليل صامت عايشت فيه حلمك امن في عرينك
أدخلتني فيه
أحببتني
...علمتني كيف يكون الانسان أنسان
...نعم أنت

أنا
لست أميرة
أنا
أميرتك
طفلتك المدللة

أنا
لست أنا
من دونك

أنا
أنت
يجمع القدر روحين
...و يتأمر ضدهما العالم

أنت
الانسان
الطفل
الرجل
الثائر
على الكون
على
القدر
على الحقيقة
و سابقا
...على الحب

أنت
أنا
لماذا؟
أتلك هي الحقيقة
حقيقة العالم
أم حقيقتنا
أختارتنا
أم
اخترناها؟

أنت
رأيت دموعي بيعينيك
رأيت نفسي

أنا
أحبك
أنت

مي

May.


Yes...

And,
She's back in Cairo again...

Crying doesn't necessarily mean that you're feeling bad, it just means that u need to cry. It just means u might be feeling frustrated, angry and sad... This is exactly when Vodka comes short...

كل ما بشتقلك
بمسك قلم وورقة
بجرب ارسملك صورة
أو اكتبلك غنية
أو ارسملك بيت صغير
وارسم شجرة وغيم وطير

كل ما بشتقلك
بشعل شمعة بعتم الليل
ببلش احكيلك عالناس
أو احكيلك عن حالي
أو سليكي بقصة جديدة
حتى ما خليكي وحيدة
...كان ياما كان

...كان في أميرة

كل ما بشتقلك
بقدر كل الحكي والسكوت
بقدر كل لحظة بتموت
انتي فيها مو موجودة

كل ما بشتقلك
بعلي فوق الغيم عيوني
حتى شوفك وين ما تكوني
...مهما كنتي عني بعيدة
كلنا سوا - كل ما بشتقلك

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Bridge the Gap in Blogspace...

Just another try to better understand this world...
Calling all bloggers who believe in peace and mutual understanding, and who want to teach about their cultures and curious to learn about other cultures

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Not In Our Name

None of us believe in violence as a solution.The following is a compilation of the writings of Syrian bloggers, regarding the attacks on the Danish and Norwegian embassies.The intent of this post is to give our readers a different perspective, a perspective that the media ignores. We’ve all seen the images of riots in the streets, flag burning, and public protests.On the other hand, few have heard of the reasonable voices coming from the Arab world in general, and from Syria in specific. If you would like to add your voice to ours, let me know and I’ll be more than happy to add you to this post. Let’s work together to make our voices heard.


Ihsan: "I welcomed both the commercial and diplomatic actions in response to the cartoons that mocked the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), and for once, I felt that we are reacting in a civilized manner! Not any more! While I’m 100% convinced that the Syrian Regime had a hand in what happened. I still cannot understand the concept of being driven like a sheep. To me, those people who were sabotaging and burning the embassies seemed like stupid sheep led by a smart shepherd."

Yazan: No, they were not attacking Danish or European "out of line" freedom of speech, they were not even taking revenge for the prophet, They were attacking the heart of Syria. The civilized idea of Syria.
These ppl are criminals, And the ones RESPONSIBLE for letting them unleashed are CRIMINALS too...
WHY DIDN'T WE SEE ANYONE IN HANDCUFFS YET?!????!

Ayman: What happened in Damascus today is just shameful. I had expected the protest to be peaceful and civilized. Mobs ran into the streets, shouted and attacked embassies, without realizing the severity of the damage they inflicted to "their" cause and to Islam's image. Mobs controlled the protests today, and people who were there to peacefully protest were shocked and had to hide in their homes. I felt a bitter disappointment.

Sara: I was ready to yell at the top my lungs, "What a bunch of jack asses!!!" I couldn't believe that a mob of angry Muslims burnt the Danish embassy. Why?? That was seriously not necessary. They had no right. Islamically this is seriously NOT acceptable. I personally condemn this sinful act. You cannot fix something wrong with something worse... Innocent people could've died. They had nothing to do with the cartoons.

The Syrian Brit: "These acts were carried out in the name of Islam, under the guise of defending it.. What a sickening farce.. I say to all those bastards who attacked the Embassies and burnt flags and vandalised properties.. Not in my name.. Never.."

Omar Faleh: "I do feel ashamed of how things turn out in my home country, and I do feel very bad about where the country is going, especially that I believe that the government was not completely innocent of being involved in this matter.. and I don't agree with any political or social value in there.. but.. those people are not Syrians.."

Omar Salaymeh: "I hope people don’t take the actions of a few thugs as representative of the Syrian or Lebanese people. Just like we expressed our voices of concern over the cartoons in the first place, we’re all expressing our views again over the shameful acts. We, the rational, should work together to show the world that there’s more to Arabs than what they see on television. If I learned anything from the cartoon fiasco, it’s that our views, beliefs and culture are not well known to the west. I think this whole situation could have been prevented if there wasn’t much ignorance on both sides of the table."

Ammar: Everybody said it, this is not us, nor it is our Islam. Everything that happened in the last two days in Syria and Lebanon jeoperdised the efforts muslims made to keep the protests civilised and rational. Apologies to the people and countries hurt in the violence acts. Still, we'll keep protesting peacefully against the cartoons about our prophet Muhamad (PBUH).

Yaman: The problem for Muslims is not the Danish economy. In fact, the source of the problem does not even rest with the editors of the European newspapers or the cartoonists themselves. The problem is the cancer of the extremists who embrace and adopt their closed minded and violent world view based loosely on an erroneous understanding of the Qur'an. For, we must realize that the publication of the cartoons in the first place was a response to the extremists and ironically enough, succeded only in eliciting primarily the response of those same extremists further intensifying the problem. It was irresponsible of the papers to do this knowing what the response would be--but let us not forget that the cartoons were originally published five months ago on September 30, 2005. Why the delay? Obviously, it was more politically suitable for the Arab regimes to inflate this issue today. Why the riots 5 months later? If the cartoons were really the issue then the world would have been on fire in 2005, not 2006.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Express Your Solidarity

Differences stop being an enriching factor the minute Violence gets in the way...

Share ur thoughts, anger, solidarity...
Email the embassies attacked and tell them that Syria will always be an open and peaceful country and nation...

Embassy of Denmark: damamb@um.dk
Embassy of Norway: emb.damascus@mfa.no
Embassy of Sweden: ambassaden.damaskus@foreign.ministry.se
Embassy of Chile: echilesy@scs-net.org

For all the commenters, Thank you... Thank you for your support...
This week has been from hell, I hope I get some extra time to reply back to ya.. again, Thank You All...

Monday, February 06, 2006

Danish Embassy Trauma - Recations!

Yazan my friend, we all know it's not the population of syria that have acted this way. Only the government could pull a thing like this. We will tell people of all the wonderful things we saw in syria .... And the boys and i will not forget the syria we saw...

Jonas


Jonas is one of 4 danish CouchSurfers stayed at my place for almost a week. about 2 months ago. That's after the drawings were initially published. we talked about it back then, and we had an understanding that it was strictly a Danish inner affair and were handled that way, through the danish media between the danish ppl...

Now it's an international crisis.. Who's responsible for that?!

Now it's a political nightmare for Syria... at least I KNOW who's responsible for this.

74 of the ppl arrested in the Danish consulate and church attacks in Ashrafieh, Beirut are SYRIANS. While only 34 are Lebanese.

I honestly donno what to say.

I was there yesterday, I had to see the "conflict zone".
What was not aired in the news was that the first floor of the embassy complex is a SYRIAN Company "Debbane", and the last floor is an actual residence!

No, they were not attcking Danish or European "out of line" freedom of speech, they were not even taking revenge for the prophet, They were attacking the heart of Syria. The civilised idea of Syria.


These ppl are criminals, And the ones RESPONSIBLE for letting them unleashed are CRIMINALS too...
WHY DIDN'T WE SEE ANYONE IN HANDCUFFS YET?!????! I guess jonas answered this question...

I don't care how SACRED or IMPORTANT this symbol is, There is NOTHING that can justify these acts. NOTHING.

A living soul is more important than all the ones that are dead.. because a living soul still has the ability and chance to innovate and create.... so, again... Yes, We Have The Right to Caricature God.

Just as YOU have the right not to buy my cartoons...

I wanna applaud the Syrian blogsphere for their reaction...

Ayman's Damascene Blog - Shame Shame Shame and Not in Our Name: Syrian Bloggers and More Thoughts on the Danish Cartoons Row

Omar's Earth to Omar - Regarding the Vandalism of Danish Embassies

OZ's Between Syria And France - That was not the way!

Ihsan's Bits & Bites of Syria - Ashamed of being Syrian!

Omar's Deconstructed Life - When stupidity meets ignorance and not me, not in my name

Amr Tulaimat's Across Syria & Inside Homs - Sheep

More Syrian reactions...
Ammar, The Syrian Brit, Sara, Digital Oasis, Ghalia, Gottfried, Sinan Yaman and Namir


Yesturday the danish consulate in Beirut were set on fire and a couple of days ago the danish embassy in Damaskus were set on fire, in Afganistan a guy were killed during a demonstration. The situation in Denmark is tense aswell, most danish people didn't agree with Jyllandsposten, but the common man on the street is getting more and more confused as the media is covering the developement. I hope that in the long run we will learn to understand the cultural and religious diversity that modern societies consist of, but in order to reach that goal we are obliged to move towards dialog and understanding rather than strenghening borders.


Jon, another one of the "boys"... I Have to agree with u...

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Yes, we have the right to caricature God!

Yes we do!!!

I give my respect to Mr. Jacques Lefranc who sacrificed his carrier for his beliefs!

More on this:
French editor fired over cartoons - BBC News

Republishing the drawings is a snap at death threats!!
I do not support those caricatures nor did I feel they're anywhere near funny! But they're drawn with a pencil and a paper.. and a civilised response is by a pencil and a paper!!

Peaceful demostrations and boycott are a good sign, but the Ironic thing is that these very same ppl are being humiliated and tortured each and every day, not by Denmark rather their own country men!!
Why can't these ppl deomonstrate for their right to express, to Live!!

With all do respect, the Prophet is not more important than these issues!!!

UPDATE:
Protestors burning the Danish and Norwegian embassies in Damascus.
A norwegian friend is asking, WHY?!
Anybody's up to such an answer?!

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

A Planet in the making...

It's raw...

It's still in "black and white"...

But it's ours, Finally... Planet SyriaMirror.

Calling all Syrian Bloggers, Expat Bloggers living in Syria or Anyone blogging about Syria...

If your blog is not listed yet, plz email me at.
d.sal@scs-net.org

Planet SyriaMirror, the first portal for Syrian blogs.

Join us there...