Now onto Syria

A ceasefire has been declared in Gaza - and chances are that the blockade on Gaza will also be eased as part of this ceasefire.

Now that this is over, better turn our attention to the civil war in Syria where many more people are dying.

Hopefully this will be a short lived conflict and nothing in comparison of the decades of oppression that the Palestinians have endured, but at the moment, it is far more bloody, far more brutal.

Small steps are slowly being taken where it seems tht eventually the Syrian regime will eventually be toppled. But this does not mean that after that there will be paradise there as some of the opposition groups have also shown quite an apetite for violence and brutality that has many locals on the ground worried.

Syria: Like father like son?

When the arab spring started, I thought that there was a chance it may avoid Syria.

While repressive and the state had a history of cracking down on dissent, I saw some intelligence, and attempts to make Syria not be like all the rest.

However this peace lasted only a few weeks when some elements of the regime cracked down against graffitiing youngsters, which started protests against the regime.

Since then the protests have increased and so has the regimes brutality.

There were words said early on by Bashar al Asad that seemed to suggest he could potentially change the nature of things in Syria and lead to progress that the people could live with.

Syria is burning

I havent blogged about the Arab revolts in a while now.

That isnt because its all over or sorted though.

The current big place of action is Syria - tension has been simmering for the past year and thousands have been killed.

Now it seems that Assad Junior is preparing to go the whole hog like his father with a ground assault on the city of Homs which could leave many more dead and injured.

There have been calls for resolutions from major western powers which have been vetoes by China and Russia - the latter claiming that the former are stoking the unrest.

It is a complicated situation where the government forces are clearly in the wrong, and it seems like it will only get worse.

"Gay Girl in Damascus" turns out to be "White married American dude in Edinburgh"

Now, who'd have thunk that?

A popular Syrian blogger that had been blogging the Syrian uprising "from the inside" actually turns out to be a 40 year old American studying in Edinburgh.

Freedom is cheap

Currently the middle east is going through a set of disturbances, something which is undoing a part of what was done there a century ago when the countries were carved up and eventually lead to a multitude of despicable regimes.

What they are fighting for is also a multitude of things, but a major theme is one of dignity and freedom. and jobs and prosperity, but the latter can be eased by the former.

So far Tunisia and Egypt caved and the regimes fell - the end result may be for the good, or it may be the same or worse, as instability always has a price.

Yemen is brinking on the edge of total chaos where the ruling President has promised to stand down but not many believe him. Some prominent figures, including in the army have asked him to go, others have asked him to stay.

Syria bans face veils at universities

Female students wearing a full face veil will be barred from Syrian university campuses, the country's minister of higher education has said.

Ghiyath Barakat was reported to have said that the practice ran counter to the academic values and traditions of Syrian universities.

His ruling, published on the All4Syria website, was said to be in response to requests from students and parents.

The issue of full face veils has caused controversy in other countries.

Kinda al-Shammat, a law professor and women's rights activist in Damascus, welcomed the decision and said it was in line with the Syrian belief in moderation.

Syria denies supplying scud missiles to Lebanon

Syria has denied Israeli accusations it had supplied scud missiles to the militant group Hezbollah.

Israeli President Shimon Perez had accused Damascus on Tuesday of shipping the long-range missiles to guerrillas in the south of Lebanon.

The US expressed alarm at the accusation. The Obama administration has re-establish relations with Syria after a five-year hiatus.

A Syrian government statement said the accusations were "fabrications".

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