June 9, 2005

A BABY HAS A WAY OF BRINGING US ALL TOGETHER:

Syria's secular and Islamist opposition unite against Baathists: The country's ruling Baath Party Congress concluded Thursday without the reforms many Syrians anticipated. (Nicholas Blanford, 6/10/05, The Christian Science Monitor)

It's often said here that the secular activists represent the head of the opposition movement and the Islamists the heart. So long as the two stayed apart, they were little threat to the Syrian government.

But recent outcries for democracy have encouraged the weak and fractious secular opposition to reach out to their religious counterparts, potentially signalling trouble for President Bashar al-Assad's regime.

"The secularists and Islamists are talking to each other," says Ammar Abdulhamid, a Syrian analyst. "The whole discourse is about organizing ourselves and putting on more pressure."

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 9, 2005 7:17 PM
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