Syria News Wire

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Entries from November 2008

Syria on the web – Obama’s Syria policy, Imad Moustapha’s Syria policy, Damascus in the 80s, and more…

November 30th, 2008 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

‘Syria on the web’ is the start of a new series of posts showing the best articles on Syria – from the blogs, and the international and local press. We start with an article by Aaron Miller – a former advisor to President Clinton. He’s urging Barack Obama to follow a ‘Syria first’ policy. Dump […]

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10% sales tax delayed

November 28th, 2008 · No Comments · Uncategorized

It was supposed to start next year – but the 10% sales tax has been scrapped. For now. Syria has a poor record in collecting taxes, but a sales tax is a lot easier to manage. So VAT (Value Added Tax) was supposed to be launched next year. The price of all goods and services […]

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Picture of the day – Jebl Qasioun

November 26th, 2008 · 1 Comment · Uncategorized

There are a lot of things I like about Qasioun. The ability to look at Damascus in miniature. The distance from reality. The space. The breeze. The sounds drifting up from the city below. And there are a lot of things I hate. The out-of-towners who run the over-priced flea-pits. The tourists. The women looking for […]

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British pop star brings Syrian Orchestra to UK

November 25th, 2008 · No Comments · Uncategorized

The Syrian Orchestra are performing with one of the UK’s biggest pop stars. Damon Albarn is the man behind Blur – they were one of the biggest bands of the 1990s in Britain, beaten only to the top spot by Oasis. But since then, they have split up, and Albarn has worked on an eclectic […]

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Syria News Wire makes it into a newspaper – again

November 23rd, 2008 · 3 Comments · Uncategorized

So after the Syria News Wire was picked as one of the Daily Telegraph’s favourite Syria blogs, the same British newspaper asked me for an interview. The Daily Telegraph is Britain’s biggest selling quality newspaper, with about one million copies a day. But I had my suspicions. It has a reputation as the most right-wing […]

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Buthaina Shaaban: Syria-Israel deal is close – exclusive

November 20th, 2008 · 4 Comments · Uncategorized

Buthaina Shaaban – adviser to the Syrian president, and Nobel Peace Prize nominee – has revealed the country is closer to a peace-deal with Israel than it has ever been. This year, Syria has had a series of indirect talks with Israel, on the return of the Golan Heights. It is the first time the […]

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Britain: Bashar is a man we can do business with

November 19th, 2008 · 5 Comments · Uncategorized

Hasn’t the world changed. A few months ago, isolated by the world, Syria was jumping up and down trying to get noticed. Now, Britain – Bush’s former cheerleader – says Bashar could be a British ally. David Miliband, Britain’s Foreign Secretary has been in Damascus, meeting Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. He said the talks went […]

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Syria News Wire makes it into the Telegraph

November 18th, 2008 · 3 Comments · Uncategorized

The new look Syria News Wire is only three days old, and already it gets a mention in Britain’s Daily Telegraph: “State crackdowns come and go, bloggers are jailed and released, but you can’t squash the ether. Sasa, for instance, has been blogging about Syria since 2004, with Syria News Wire. A recent post about Miliband’s […]

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The Syria News Wire has changed

November 15th, 2008 · 10 Comments · Uncategorized

Welcome to the new look Syria News Wire. New home, new look. It’s a big step to change the web address – Saroujah has been my home since 14 February 2005. But everything has to move on. And I’ve switched to WordPress too – it’s much more powerful, and looks a lot better. Next time […]

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Forward Magazine launches blog

November 13th, 2008 · 2 Comments · Uncategorized

Forward Magazine has launched its own blog. It is probably the widest read Syrian magazine written in English. And it features the writing of the brilliant Sami Moubayed and Abdulsalam Haykal. Worth a read.

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