“I think that whoever talks of pressure has to be precise. I don’t feel any pressure. Even the Syrian regime has stopped talking about conspiracy and foreign intervention. Either they know there is pressure and they don’t dare declare it or there is very little actual pressure. The Syrian regime has benefited from total support of the Arab regimes until very recently. The Iraqi regime is still solidly supportive.” –Fawwaz Traboulsi (in Jadaliyya 9/2/11)
As the Syrian uprising enters its sixth month and shows no sign of turning back, the Syrian people took note of the Iraqi government’s strong support for Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s regime, who has been brutally repressing Syrians, tragically now with full military force. In mid-August Iraqi PM Nouri al-Maliki was reported to have met with Syrian business luminaries to create “stronger economic ties.” In response, the coalition of Syrian coordinating committees wrote a statement to the Iraqi people saying:
“We reassure our Iraqi brothers that our morning is surely coming, and that the relationship between our two countries will be one of brotherhood . . . We ask our brothers in Iraq to offer one suggestion to the rulers of Syria: step down immediately . . .”
That is when members of protest-movement coordinating and media group “The Great Iraqi Revolution” released an “Open Letter to the Heroic Syrian Revolution“, writing:
“Know that your triumph is inevitable, no matter how long it takes. For you are more worthy of Syria than a regime that has unleashed its army and allowed it to kill its own people while not once aiming a bullet at the occupied Golan Heights over these past decades [. . .] As for the Iraqi government – that stands in support of the regime of murder and blood – its position is predictable because the tyrants overlap in a shared project – sponsored by a regional power – whose goals are no longer hidden to anyone. And don’t forget that the politicos of the new Iraq were also embraced in the past by the same regime that is killing and targeting you.” They close by writing, “Be assured that your coming victory will strengthen us to resist our tyrants and the occupiers that sponsor them.” The full text of the letter is translated below by Farah Mohsen and Ali Issa.
Open Letter to the Heroic Syrian Revolution
We, along with all Iraqis, have read the message you addressed to Iraq and its people urging them to take a position on the Syrian revolution. Accordingly, we give you our answer as we look forward to your freedom that you are fueling with the blood of free men; freedom you express through chants recited by Syrians young and old, singing for all the free men and women around the world:
“God . . . Syria . . . and Freedom only.”
Know, oh, brothers that we are living an era of “new blood”, after living half a century under tyranny and injustice. God has honored all of us with a change brought by a new generation that our “leaders” mistakenly thought couldn’t offer anything, thinking their regimes were successful in taming and alienating them from the true meaning of resistance against their unjust monarchs. But the will of God has made these young men, among them Syrian young men, into swords at the throats of the tyrants; battling them with bare chests and angry voices calling for freedom. They use modern-day technology – that today’s dictators secluded from us for decades – as a method of communication, replacing the old way of underground meetings that were used in the past by activists.
We approve of your blessed revolution, support its youth, and bless its steps as we anticipate its success and the accomplishment of its goals. This is our stance on every revolution that is lead by any nation that stands against its oppressor; and as far as we know this is the stance of all Iraqis on towards your revolution, as well as the stance of all people of conscience.
As for the Iraqi government – that stands in support of the regime of murder and blood – its position is predictable because the tyrants overlap in shared a project – sponsored by a regional power – whose goals are no longer hidden to anyone. And don’t forget that the politicos of the new Iraq were also embraced in the past by the same regime that is killing and targeting you.
Finally, we wish to bring our Syrian revolutionary brothers’ attention to the importance of preserving the peacefulness of their revolution, and its noble objectives, not to give chance for those who are slaves to occupiers to “ride the wave.” Maintain the revolution’s national agenda in order for it to shine with its honorable goals, so that your grandchildren grow full of pride knowing that you created this revolution with your own two hands.
Know that your triumph is inevitable, no matter how long it takes. For you are more worthy of Syria than a regime that has unleashed its army and allowed it to kill its own people while not once aiming a bullet at the occupied Golan Heights over these past decades.
Be assured that your coming victory will strengthen us to resist our tyrants and the occupiers that sponsor them.
Till we meet soon, God willing, under the shade of new regimes that gain their legitimacy from the will of the people, and are not taken in by the unjust among them that belittle their potential.
May God bless your martyrs’ souls, and may they dwell in heaven.
May God heal your wounded.
Go under God’s protective watch.
The Youth of the Great Iraqi Revolution