angry birds is NOT funny in Damascus

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Art work by Tammam Azzam

Today; the weather is cloudy with the chance of mortar rain… the temperature is much much higher than its average in this time of the year. It’s hot that your car might melt down in the street.

Every day the sky of Damascus throws tens of mortar shells randomly in the city. Sometimes it feels there’s someone playing angry birds… well.. REAL angry birds. it’s weird how the game becomes so brutal when it gets out of the screen.. When someone plays it for real and thinks if he kills all the birds and destroys all the stones he will go to heaven then. This is a surreal scene for how Damascus looks like in the day light. What’s more surreal? When you hear those who are shelling the mortars say they are doing this for the sake of the revolution and to emit this dictatorship then you see them shelling a kindergarten school bus.. Five little kids and their teacher are the dictatorship in my country. Another ironic picture is when you see the time of the shelling is exactly the same time when employers generally get out to their homes.. Really! Are those poor employers really a dictatorship?!  I am saying they are poor because most of the richies are now out of the country. Is this your idea about a revolution!

How much more do I have to worry about my fourteen year old sister because they might bomb the schools?

How much more do I have to run all my way to the hospital staring at the sky not at the road to see if anything is falling over my head?If this is your idea about revolutions!

Then really may you rest in peace Gandhi. May you rest in peace mother Teresa, may you all rest in peace great peace seekers lucky you didn’t have the chance to see those freedom fighters.

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a mortar shell on an elementary school in Damascus

The world is a dangerous place to live in

There’s always a plan B when Plan A doesn’t work, but is there a Planet B, if our planet is ruined?

Most of the people don’t think about this, even I didn’t usually think about it. And then I was awaken on the sound of an explosion, I saw black clouds rising in the air, at that moment I realized my life is going to change forever. Then, along those three past years, doors for outside my self were closed and other doors that led deeper inside me were opened.

During this time I saw my country turning into a hot spot, then into a headline in all international newspapers, then into a main interest of the humanitarian societies, who knows maybe in a few time I will see it in Hollywood horror movies .

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La Madeleine á la Veilleuse
Georges de La Tour

Syria…

A country that doesn’t have many records to be proud of, but the first known Alphabet in history, the oldest inhabited city, most of the oldest churches, one of the oldest written laws, nothing new to be proud of but a nice small peaceful country.

Actually I was proud of my old city, I was proud of being a “Muslim” who celebrates Christmas , who can doubt anything that’s supposed to be believed in, I was proud of being raised as a free spirit, proud I can draw and sing, I can love.

Sometimes we need to be proud, to belong , and today I was reading an article and found out that Syria now has a new record:

THE MOST DANGEROUS PLACE IN THE WORLD.

Hmmmm. Well nothing to be proud of. : /

Aw wait, I live in the most dangerous place in the world!! That kind of makes me feel better, my depression then is normal. I’m not sick , and guess what, I am a strong woman : P

Being able to write while listening to  music and shelling sounds is a blessing, and I am lucky to be a strong lady and live in the most dangerous place , to spend the best years of my life in the most dangerous place is an opportunity that most of the world’s youth can’t have …

And I am lucky that I knew how it is like to live in a normal place where going out with friends is something you don’t usually appreciate, and being home safe is something you don’t notice.

Lucky…. Yes lucky : (

Lucky I realized when Syria is destroyed there’s no Syria B other than refugee camps. Will there be an ear to listen or an eye to read ?!

every thing I said about being lucky is a lie, don’t believe it.

Wine, Poetry, and Syria…

Poetry and wine. This was the name of my yesterday.

In Damascus, where you smell Jasmine everywhere, and you read the history of the world through the gate stones of the oldest inhabited city, someone decided to replace the Jasmine of blood and the history of the oldest city of some religious myths.

Bab Sharqi- Old Damascus

Bab Sharqi- Old Damascus

You read about Damascus everywhere, you see the battles and the dead bodies, you see different flags.. colorful ones and black ones , yet it’s not a matter of colors on the ground, it’s a matter of survival and control, not a matter of freedom rather than a matter of who will take the control on other people’s freedom.

An event is waiting for me in a small cafeteria that is lost among those old stones and the aroma of coffee, bread, jasmine which is the magic aromatic combination of old Damascus. A short walk from Bab Touma square to Bab Sharqi at night can be now my most huge wish, but I can’t fulfill it at present because the night bats are everywhere. Any way I had the chance to have this walk at about 3:00 pm which is not a quiet good time to have a walk in Damascus.

These streets are the main evidence for all love stories in Damascus. If you are a damascene you can’t walk there and not remember a thing, some people passed in our lives and left away, some left behind the borders and others left behind the line that separates the sea from the sky… only those stones and some of us are still there.. But when we will go, those stones will know other people and won’t be able to tell them about us.

I passed by the mosque and the church, you can see on the walls of the church a huge photo for the two kidnapped bishops..

I walked and walked, pretended to be calm when I passed near that cafeteria on the left, even stared at the table I used to sit on waiting for my love.. didn’t want to stop for a moment to see if someone else was sitting there, and as cold as Ice I had to go on…

I reached on time, my lovely friends also arrived, young men and women were there, different religions, different majors, different styles, and different political opinions, only wine and poetry gathered us…

Maybe it’s also wine and poetry that separated us somehow too… not literally of course, but it’s the concept of considering poetry and dance as arts or as a devil’s seduction that is Haram, The concept of seeing me as an independent free woman or a “jewel to be covered”…

In that old renewed space everyone said a poet he wrote, Syria was present in every word they said, it was our pain , our hope and our inspiration , Syrians are still able to drink wine despite the will of extremists , they are still able to love , and hold the hands of their beloved .. they are still able to speak up and scream, they are still able to sit together in a café but why can’t they sit together in a conference hall… I don’t know…

I think politicians must drink and start a dialogue.

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Sham mahal cafe – poetry and wine event

Happens, sometimes that you want to…

It happens sometimes that you have a heart that doesn’t fit right in its place .. it needs a bigger room .. your chest isn’t big enough maybe .. so it beats fast all the time, and wants to stop every now and then ..

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Happens sometimes that you want to change your lungs , because they are too small.. you try to inhale all the air in the atmosphere to get enough Oxygen and feel  breathing makes sense like before .. like the air is reaching your brain and your vessels ..

Happens sometime that you want bigger eyes .. to see beyond  material .. to see all those who left , all those you miss .. bigger eyes that can see the truth, where no truth matters but the color of your blood, and the origin of your riffle.  

You may want to change your voice , your throat , your generous lacrimal gland, and your small busy brain …

Also, it happens that you want to change your memory .. get a short term memory .. a memory of a fish maybe , the five seconds memory .. then you won’t even know about your heart or eyes or lungs …

And the worst that happens, is sometimes you want to change the fact .. then you recognize how hollow you are..  recognize that changing your heart is more rational than changing the damn fact.. war is crazy ..

If stopping the war is not in the hands of those who fight.. Nor in the hands of those who die.. then let me change my eyes  or lungs, makes more sense ..

 

I’m such a drama queen!

Just today, I’ve been counting.. It’s been exactly twenty days since the last time I went out of the suburb I live in.. I live in a suburb that is near the front line of the confrontation. So today I thought I need to be in Damascus.. I am actually in Damascus but I meant Damascus that small old spot.. the old city ..

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a Bus accident caused by the highway sniper

The suburb has 2 ways to the city and they  both now give you the chance of being under the snipers  fire.. one of the roads is completely closed by now since the rebels won’t let anyone pass and leave with his complete body organs,  yet the army isn’t doing anything about it for now.. so I had to be going down through the highway that was once an international highways .. I took the bus, sat next to an old man who was reading Qur’an in the bus to spend his time because who knows how much we will have to wait on the checkpoint. Right after you cross the checkpoint you become in the danger zone, I felt strange at that moment and I thought to myself, this may be the last thoughts that cross my head , if I ever got back home I want to write… this is what I thought of.. then I said Oh I’m such a drama queen.

In the bus there was a young guy who was going to meet his girlfriend, you can see that in his eyes , in his smile when he was talking to her on the mobile phone..  yes some people can still be in love!

The driver was telling a man next to him how lucky he was although he lost his 20,000$ car but he was happy he still can walk on two legs after he was kidnapped by angry rebels, rebels took his car as a payback for fighting the government , or else he should have fought with them to serve the revolution. He was a bit sad for losing his “life earn” but smiling he said : I’m thankful I’m still alive.. I don’t want to fight

An old woman wanted to get into the bus but there were no place ..so a man stood up and gave her his place, yea these people still exist .. and guess where! here in Syria ! where some people kill and slaughter … those people in the bus all have these deep brown eyes.. they are simple people who really tell you a story in their eyes.. weak , weary , and yet they still want to keep their good manners alive. Everyday many people died by the sniper’s fire on the highway .. no one could know where he’s hiding.. and yet , men and women  are still going to their daily works. I think no one can stop life here, they may change its shape, darken its color, but never will stop it.

Staring through my window at the destruction around, and thinking of that bus driver .. well yea there are replaceable losses and irreplaceable losses .. this man can’t be sad for his “life earn” as long as it’s replaceable , as I can’t be sad for this governmental building as long as it’s replaceable .. but 230 coffins I saw on 27-9-2012 in a hospital passage are irreplaceable .. 230 coffins I walked along looking for the coffin I wanted to be next to and cry over..

Ah the bus stopped, at last I’m there ..I didn’t die of snipers..

Oh I’m such a drama queen.

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a destroyed governmental building on the northern entrance of Damascus

freedom fighters literally GRILLING heads…

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Image blurred on purpose

you can find original image here 

I will not comment on this news.. I am speechless.. this horror movie is my country.. is where I live..this butcher is being shown as a hero in the west.. as a freedom fighter.. freedom of chopping bodies and grilling heads…

I just copied and pasted it .. you can read the full news here

On Thursday, 11 April 2013, a Syrian Army helicopter transporting food supplies to villages and Army units besieged around Maarat Noman city in Idleb province when it was attacked by NATO’s best assets Al-Qaeda FSA terrorists not with chants of course calling for a better election law, but with latest weapons provided covertly and openly by their sponsors, and the plane was downed. On board 8 officers and soldiers, the terrorists rushed to the site of the downed helicopter, decapitated the pilots then GRILLED them.

Ironically, Syrian based media were all banned in Europe, USA, Canada and other countries, Syrian state and private TV channels were all taken off air by a decision from the EU & the Arab League in order to cover on such crimes and promote their one line of news.

 source article is here 

 

In Syria, religion Sacrifice out of history books

ImageI was reading about the “Sacrifice” in different religions, and I was horrified when I read about some ancient civilizations who sacrificed one of their citizens yearly to the god of sun or fire or whatever they worshiped.  I watched some pictures and had some doubts that maybe we can’t understand what was going on there at that time and maybe it’s not a sacrifice, maybe it is .. but still freezes me the vision of myself being sacrificed, led through the stairs of the temple to be slayed while everybody is watching me and praising the god.

Then I just thought, what will we leave for future anthropologists and archaeologists  for their

researches to study and explore our current era, here particularly in Syria. I mean just in case the whole civilization was wiped out like ancient ones,  and all was left was few pictures and few scripts..

What will they think of this picture, maybe they’ll think these people worshiped the “God of blood” and this man was the sacrifice of spring, as they considered spring was the beginning of the year. They wanted the blessing from that god so they slayed him .. but the rituals for this nation said that the sacrifice must be led through the city for all the people to see him and praise the “lord of blood” .. future anthropologists will be close to the truth actually if they said so, but they won’t be right in details.

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This man, Nidal Jannoud, a poor man who had nothing but his truck which he used to sell the vegetables, was  kidnapped, tortured and dragged down the street, at the end they slaughtered him !! and yes as a sacrifice for the god of radicals. Because he belonged to a minority sect and that god loved the blood of minorities.

Now what if they found this script :

“We will mince them with the mincing machine and feed their flesh to dogs”

Sheikh Adnan al-Arur

Future history researchers will be confused by this script, mince what, who?! our sins ? sins have no flesh.. mince the devils ? what did this man want to say?

At that time I won’t be there to tell them, He literally means this, it’s not a rhetorical image. We will mince everyone who doesn’t have our faith.

Today is the second memory of Nidal Jannoud.. after him many thousands of innocents were also sacrificed to that same god.. many whose souls won’t be able to rest in peace until their country rests in peace too.