Free counters My name is Omar. Colombian-American. Book-addict & tea connoisseur. Politics. Anti-patriarchy. Food and arepa enthusiast. English, Español and struggle عربية. Follow me on twitter @adverse101


Syria Media Roundup (September 13-20, 2014)

Inside Syria

After a cease-fire, Homs residents face hard times Homs residents express the inadequate conditions Syria has been left in. Schools, homes, and businesses are in terrible shape, and people have lost the feeling of stability and security. 

Whoever Saves a Life Matthieu Aikins provides a comprehensive report about the daily life of people under bombs and clashes in Aleppo City on 18 July 2014.

US strikes in Syria won’t turn locals against Islamic State Contrary to widespread belief, Edward Dark writes about how the Islamic State has largely succeeded in winning hearts and minds in the areas it rules by providing services and order. 

A mole inside Assad’s embassy aided Syrian rebels Bassam Barabandi, a career Syrian diplomat, helped nearly 100 Syrian activists to obtain travel documents. Bassam became an opposition mole, working on behalf of moderate elements battling the Assad regime.

At least 34 Syrian children die from contaminated measles vaccine The Guardian reports about the death of at least 34 Syrian children” in rebel-held Syria after being injected with contaminated measles vaccines.” 

As U.S. strikes loom, Syrian civilians fear becoming collateral damage U.S. strikes that wish to target ISIS/ISIL have many Syrians panicking and fleeing cities like Raqqa in fear of being impacted by the blast(s). 

Regional and International Perspectives

Israel has the opportunity to win the hearts of all Syrians’ In an interview with The Times of Israel, FSA commander says “Israel should impose a no-fly area over the buffer zone and allow the moderate opposition fighters to continue eastward, toward Damascus 

U.N. investigators cite atrocities in Syria Nick Cumming-Bruce reports about the results of a four-person United Nations panel investigating human rights abuses in Syria. At the Human Rights Council in Geneva, the panel presented, in their eighth report in three years, details of more atrocities committed by Islamic extremists and the government in Syria, warning that there could be no battlefield solution to the “madness” in the civil war there.

Lessons of Libya cast shadow on Syria strategy Oren Dorell compares, in the USA TODAY, President Obama’s recent plan to involve in Syria with the U.S strategy that was used in Libya in 2011. 

What’s in a word? Confusion about U.S. policy toward Syria ”The United States insists that it’s not helping the Syrian government conduct airstrikes against Islamic State militants by providing intelligence on the fighters’ locations”

Bulgaria: New Evidence Syrians Forced Back to Turkey Human Rights Watch documented that “Bulgarian border police have in the past month forced Syrian asylum seekers back to Turkey and beaten some of them.”

Congress approves arming of Syrian rebels ” The last time President Barack Obama asked Congress to approve military action in Syria, Democrats and Republicans united against him. This time, they’ve got his back. “  John Hudson writes about the decision of the Senate to follow the House in authorizing a program that would train-and-equip Syrian rebels. 

Policy and Reports 

What a U.S. strike on Syria would mean for Assad Joshua Landis and Steven Heydemann provide their insight on the U.S. strikes on ISIL/ISIS in Syria and its effect on the Assad government. 

Syria’s al-Qaeda wing searches for a strategy Aron Lund states: “The Nusra Front has failed to respond effectively to this crisis, and as its position in Syria weakens, internal divisions appear to be opening up.” Lund discusses weakening central control, the Idlib branch of the Nusra Front, and whether or not Al-Nusra will regain footing again after its downfalls against the IS. 

To confront the Islamic State, seek a truce in Syria According to Yezid Sayigh, “As a core coalition led by the United States gears up to confront the militant Islamic State with action in Iraq, there is a rare opportunity to engineer a truce in Syria.” 

The Arabic translation of this article 

AFP says it will no longer accept work from journalists who travel to Syria 
After the horrific killings of American freelance journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff by ISIS, news organizations such as AFP decided to “no longer accept work from freelance journalists who travel to places where we ourselves would not venture.”

The Arabic translation of this article

‘Fundamental fallacy’ in Obama’s plan to arm Syrian rebels? According to Julian Pecquet, ” Lawmakers of both parties expressed disbelief that the rebels will stick to the role the United States wants to carve out for them 

The Arabic translation of this article

Economy and Agriculture

The Lebanese model for Syrian reconstruction: The ESCWA bid to hold Syria hostage to debt The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) claim that Syrians are to face a practical application of the “so-called Shock doctrine,” but is this a repeat of what happened in Lebanon in the 1990s?

Dollar soars against Syrian pound as U.S. strikes loom “The U.S. Dollar exchange rate in Syria has increased recently, raising questions about whether the nature of the increase is a normal and temporary change or a permanent result of a real crisis in the Syrian economy.”

Documentaries and Films/Media 

The Reach of War Beyond Syria The Reach of War is a short documentary that shows the work of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) with Syrian refugees.

Photoblog: Aleppo Theatre Premieres New Political Satire “A new amateur theatre troupe in the opposition-controlled parts of Aleppo gave its debut performance earlier this month.” The play is called “Bread Way,” illustrating the idea that people require culture to live.

في إدلب …اللقاحات تقتل الأطفال
In Idlib Governorate in Syria, children died after being injected with contaminated measles vaccines. 


 الأهالي: لإخراج المقرات العسكرية من كفر نبل
Abdullah Kleido reports from Kfar Nabel, Idlib, about the protests of people against the presence of opposition military headquarters amid residential areas.

 ما هو رأي السوريين حول وجود مقاتلين أجانب وماهي تأثيراتهم في سوريا
An opinion poll inside Syria about the presence of foreign fighters and their effects in Syria.

 هيثم مناع لـ” لرأي اليوم”: “اعتكفت لحاجتي لفهم معمق لكل أطراف الصراع.. والتعاون بين الحكومة السورية وأمريكا ضد “الدولة الإسلامية” لايمكن تصوره بدون وسطاء.. علاقة قطر بـ”النصرة” أشهر من نار على علم. والسياسة السعودية تهدف للتخلص من المتطرفين في المحرقة السورية 
In this interview with “Rai al Yaoum”, Haytham Manna provides his opinion on the current policy towards ISIS and the incentives behind the policy of Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

 تحقيق صحفي عن حركة أحرار الشام الإسلامية 
A journalist investigation about Ahrar al Sham and the devastating blast that wiped out its leadership.

 النساء في “سجن عدرا”بين التعذيب والإهمال 
A special report from Damascus about the systematic violation of human rights against women in the Central Prison of Damascus, better know as Adra Prison.

الغوطة الشرقية تشتعل مجدداً
Mustafa al-Haj writes for Al Monitor about the escalated clashes and mortar shelling around Damascus. Syrian rebels took al-Dukhaniyya, six kilometers (3.7 miles) southeast of Damascus, last week in a bid to open supply routes to the front line in Jobar.

The English translation of this article

 تدوينة مصورة: “دكاكين” مسرحية سورية تحكي الواقع بتشوهاته
The Syrian theater group “Bread’s Road” performed their first play in Aleppo this September. The play entitled “Shops” (Dakakin in Arabic) and it highlights corruption within the Syrian revolution.

 النصرة وجبهة ثوار سوريا توقفان الاقتتال
According to Aljazeera, The Syria Revolutionaries Front and the al-Nusra Front signed a signed a ceasefire.

 الكونغرس يجيز خطة أوباما لتدريب وتسليح معارضة سوريا 
According to Alarabiya, the U.S Congress approved arming and training of Syrian rebels to fight ISIL.


I got a chance to watch some community fútbol in Jericó, a small village in the department of Antioquia in Colombia, three weeks ago and recorded this funny goal. You can hear my awkward laugh too.

Anonymous asked
✈ - hobbies?

Reading is my favorite hobby and I spend most of my free time indulging myself in or thumbing through a variety of books. I don’t normally read fiction, but that’s something I’m trying to change.

Earlier this year, I also started to collect foreign currency and currently have 16 different ones. I have:

  1. Pakistani rupees
  2. Saudi riyals
  3. Yemeni rials
  4. Emirati dirhams
  5. Egyptian pounds
  6. Euros
  7. Swiss Francs 
  8. British Pounds 
  9. Colombian pesos
  10. Venezuelan bolivares
  11. Chilean pesos
  12. Mexican pesos
  13. Dominican pesos
  14. Guatemalan quetzales 
  15. Hong Kong dollars
  16. and of course, US dollars

Anyone who is reading this and wants to contribute to my nascent, but growing currency collection, send me a private message and let’s politick =)

EDIT: I also enjoy traveling. I can proudly say that I’ve been to 11 countries and touched ground in 4 different continents.

Countries I REALLY want to go to:


This list is going to go grow

Anonymous asked

Anonymous asked

See what your followers think of you.

BLACK = I would date you.
GREEN = I think you’re cute.
BLUE = You are my tumblr crush.
GREY = I wish you would notice me.
PURPLE = I don’t talk to you but I really love your blog.
TEAL = We have a lot in common.
YELLOW = I don’t know you at all.
ORANGE = I don’t like your blog.
BROWN = I don’t like you.
PINK = I think you are unattractive.
RED = I hate you with a burning passion.
WHITE = You scare me.

(Source: omgreblog)