Wednesday, July 31, 2013

'A Briefing on Syria' hosted by Jewish Federation of Palm Beach
Nearly 50 people attended " A Briefing on Syria" on Monday, July 22 hosted by the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) of the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County, the Interfaith Clergy Committee of Palm Beach Cuonty, and the American Muslim Alliance of Florida. Professor of Middle East Studies at Florida Atlantic University, Dr. Robert Rabil, moderated a dialogue between Mohammed Alaa Ghanem, senior political adviser, government relations director and strategist for the Syrian American Council; Oubay Atassi, a member of the Syrian National Council and president of Doraltech; Ahed Alhendi, the founder of Syrian Youth for Justice; and Shlomo Bolts, a researcher, writer and activist for multiple Syrian pro-democracy organizations in Washington, D.C. Ghanem, who received both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Damascus University, makes frequent trips to Syria and the Middle East, and routinely participates in and speaks at international conferences on Syria. Atassi has held numerous seniro positions within the telecommunications industry, including vice president of multiple divisions for Nortel Networks in the U.S., Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Miami and is fluent in Arabic, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, French and English. Alhendi fled Syria for the U.S. after being imprisoned and tortured for political activism as a student. He has written for Reuters, The Daily Beast, The Wall Street Journal and The Huffington Post, and has been interviewed by CNN, NPR and Bloomberg, to name a few media sources. Bolts received his undergraduate degree from Columbia University and graduate degree from Cambridge University. He previously worked for the (CFR FRONT)Project on Middle East Democracy, the International Institute for Strategic Studies, and the Orthodox Jewish social justice group Uri L'Tzepek, where he is currently a prison reform consultant. Much of the dialogue and Q&A at this educational program centered on Syrian President Bashar Assad, and how the West could be helpful regarding the present conflict. "When Bashar came to power in 2000, many people expected he would make changes," said Chanem. "When the Arab Spring was sweeping the region, many experts discounted the possibility that it would spread to Syria. Today, the Syrian army's combat ability has been significnatly degraded; many soldiers have defected or deserted. The Assad regime is presently supported by Iran and Hezbollah, who have recently helped Assad regain momentum. General Salim Idris is a reliable partner who shares our ideals, and the international community should support his efforts as he works to diligently to unify the ranks of the armed opposition." "Assad was like G-d," said Alhendi. "At the Christian school I attended, students were forced to pray for Jesus and Assad, and power outages and other technical difficulties were blamed on Israel. Today, the Syrian rebellion is not a struggle between secularists and Islamists, but Jihadists are strong because the liberals are not getting adequate support from the West." With regard to a sectarian conflict, Ghanem said, "The Syrian rebellion is not Sunnis versus Alawites. The opposition includes Alawites, Christians and Syrians of all backgrounds. Similarly, Assad is supported by a number of Sunnis, who benefited from his rule. The longer the war continues, however, the more likely that it will turn the sectarianism that Assad is fomenting to take hold. The U.S. has provided humanitarian support, but the humanitarian catastrophe is symptomatic of a much larger problem that can only be resolved with assertive American leadership." "Many Latin American countries are supporting Assad, particularly Venezuela, Nicaragua and Ecuador," said Atassi. "I have personally refused to meet with Argentinean President Cristina Kirchner because of her pro-Assad positions. I also believe that a large segmetn of the Latin American press is anti-American and anti-Zionist. "The Syrian regime deliberately and systematically targets civilians as Assad armed forces collapse," [[[[[[said Bolts, an Orthodox Jew of Syrian ancestry.]]]]] "Iran and Hezbollah are taking over from Assad; Iran will eventually gain access to Syria's chemical weapons, making Israel far more vulnerable." The Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County serves residents from Boynton Beach to Jupiter and west to Wellington as teh central Jewish community-building organization of the greater Palm Beaches. Federation strengthens Jewish identity, energizes the community's relationship with Iserael and meets the human needs of the Jewish community in Palm Beach County, Israel and 70 countries around the world.
[ed notes;if you were wondering wether this event was held by some ordinary jewish charity in palm beach florida,with none other then altruistic motives regarding Syria crisis,no sorry to dissapoint you,this group is very much zionist to the core!!! All about Zionism tomorrow night at... - Jewish Federation of PalmShow Your Solidarity with Israel - American Zionist Movement
The Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County: Zionist EventsThe Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County: A Zionist Experience

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