World View: Reporters Witness Assad Regime Bombing of Women and Children

World View: Reporters Witness Assad Regime Bombing of Women and Children

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • Sectarian tensions grow as Shias in Lebanon kidnap Sunni Syrians
  • Sunni Arab countries urge their citizens to leave Lebanon
  • Reporters witness Assad regime bombing of women and children
  • Anniversary of Japanese surrender triggers heightened tensions with Korea
  • China protests detention of citizens by Japanese on disputed islands

Sectarian tensions grow as Shias in Lebanon kidnap Sunni Syrians

The al-Meqdad clan (Reuters)
The al-Meqdad clan (Reuters)

Sectarian tensions throughout the Mideast took a big jump onWednesday, when the al-Meqdad clan of Lebanon, described as a ShiaMuslim family with a military wing, kidnapped more than 20 people inretaliation for the kidnapping on Monday of family member Hassanal-Meqdad. A Syrian rebel group had taken credit for the kidnappingof Hassan, accusing him of being a sniper and a member of the LebaneseShia group Hizbollah. The 20 kidnapped people were presumably Sunniand of the Free Syrian Army. There was one Turk, with the restSyrian. Al-Jazeera and Naharnet (Lebanon)

Sunni Arab countries urge their citizens to leave Lebanon

The string of kidnappings led four Sunni Arab countries — SaudiArabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar and Kuwait — to urgetheir citizens to leave Lebanon immediately. A UAE foreign ministryofficial said it issued its alert after the embassy “receivedinformation about UAE nationals being targeted and because of thedifficult and sensitive circumstances in Lebanon.” BBC andGuardian

As I’ve written many times, both Syria and Lebanon are in generationalAwakening eras, and so a crisis civil war in either country isimpossible at this time, despite the warnings of various politiciansand experts. However, much of the rest of the Mideast is in agenerational Crisis era, and the real danger is that the sectarianviolence in Syria will trigger a war throughout the region. SaudiArabia is becoming increasingly nationalistic and sectarian. For allpractical purposes, it has annexed Bahrain, where a Sunni minority isbrutally governing a very large Shia majority, and Shia populationsin eastern Saudi Arabia itself are becoming increasingly restive. Asusual, Israel serves as an energizing factor, but the conflict inSyria is seems to have overtaken Israel as a factor in mobilizingriots and demonstrations. Generational Dynamics predicts thatthere’ll be a new war in the Mideast, re-fighting the war between Jewsand Arabs that following the 1948 partitioning of Palestine and thecreation of the state of Israel.

Reporters witness Assad regime bombing of women and children

Reporters from AP, VOA, Fox News and other media all witnessed thesystematic bombing of civilian neighborhoods in the town of Azaz inSyria on Wednesday by fighter jets from the military forces of theBashar al-Assad regime. Anti-Assad activists have been claiming thatAssad’s military purposely targets civilians instead of Free SyrianArmy forces, and Wednesday events appeared to support that claim. Thebombs targeted a poor residential neighborhood with no rebel bases.The UN Human Rights Council said Wednesday that war crimes have beencommitted on both sides, but that the greatest responsibility lay withthe al-Assad regime. AP

Anniversary of Japanese surrender triggers heightened tensions with Korea

Wednesday was the 67th anniversary of the end of World War II, andSouth Korea’s president Lee Myung Bak angered the Japanese by usingthe occasion to ask the Japanese to provide compensation to survivingSouth Korean “comfort women” who were captured and used for sex duringthe war. He also asked Emperor Akihito to apologize for Japan’streatment of Koreans during the period 1905-45, when Korea was acolony of Japan. In return, the Japanese angered the Koreans when twoJapanese Cabinet ministers visited the Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo. Theshrine honors Japan’s war dead, including those now branded as warcriminals. LA Times

China protests detention of citizens by Japanese on disputed islands

There were several new incidents related to disputed islands in thePacific on Wednesday, including one where South Korean rock star KimJang-hoon swam to an island whose sovereignty is disputed betweenKorea and Japan. However, the event with the most potential forincreased tension was the detention of five Chinese nationals onislands claimed by both China and Japan. China’s Foreign Ministry haslodged a formal protest with the Japanese. Yonhap (Seoul) and Xinhua

 
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