In early December, secular and religious voices will gather in Dublin with the objective of highlighting the inordinate suffering of the Syrian people as a consequence of the unremitting chaos and conflict that has had the country in its grip for nearly six years, responsible for a horrific loss of innocent human life, the displacement of half the population, and a threat to the existence of minority communities that are able to trace their presence in the country back over a millennia and more.
The dignitaries arriving as part of the Syrian delegation include Muslim and Christian clerics, such as His Beatitude Gregory III Laham, Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, the spiritual leader of the world’s Melkite Greek Catholic Chruch; His Holiness Ignatius Aphrem II of Antioch, world’s spiritual leader of the Syriac Orthodox Church; and they include His Grace Dr Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun, Grand Mufti of Syria.
Meanwhile, secular voices among the delegation include Dr Ahmad al-Khaddour and Dr Bashir Mohammad. The former is a cardiothoracic surgeon and Professor of Medicine at Damascus University, while the latter is a cardiologist and native of Hama. Both are intent on raising the egregious role of EU sanctions in reducing conditions within Syrian hospitals to such a parlous state that women and children are dying every day due to the absence of basic medicines and drugs.
In order to emphasise the authority that this delegation speaks on events in Syria, it is worth noting that each has witnessed, suffered, and/or lost family members and loved ones to a conflict which, strip away the obfuscation and claims to the contrary, involves an Islamic Khmer Rouge attempting to implement its very own Year Zero on a multi-religious, multicultural, and multi-tribal society.
The man responsible for organising this event and bringing together such an impressive delegation to visit Ireland is Dr. Declan Hayes, a tireless activist in support of human rights in Syria and a champion of its religious minorities. Declan, whose work can be found at the We Save Syria website, has made numerous visits to the country over the course of the conflict, offering aid and solidarity to its embattled people and raising awareness of their plight back in Ireland and the UK. As a consequence there is no one who speaks with more authority on the reality of the conflict and the crisis that has engulfed the country than he does.
“Though the visit is timed to coincide with the run up to Christmas and all that entails,” he said, “the situation in Syria, as East Aleppo’s human shields show, remains very grave for all Syrians, from the youngest to the oldest. Although this visit is non-political it must be clearly stated that EU sanctions, in which Ireland are fully complicit, are killing more Syrian children than even ISIS.” He went on, “The USA, for all its Russophobia, has yet to deliver one bread roll or bandage to Aleppo, whereas the Russian Air Force continues to fly in tons of much needed food, clothing and medicines. Although Ireland cannot hope to match Russia’s humanitarian contribution, we do have the chance and the duty to be a lodestar for peace and reconciliation in Western Europe by setting an example on Syria that other independent-minded peoples can emulate.”
The Western narrative of the conflict in Syria would have us believe that something approximating to a revolution has been taking place in the country, one that enjoys popular support from ordinary Syrians. It is a narrative so grotesque, so Goebbelsian in its distortion of the truth, that it confirms the abiding mendacity of those who purport to champion democracy and human rights even as they set the world on fire.
In truth the Assad government enjoys the support of the overwhelming majority of Syrians, people who understand the difference between reform and ruin, and who refuse to stand by and allow their country to be destroyed by religious fanatics and butchers, supported by those friends of liberty the Saudi, Qatari, and Kuwaiti governments. Each of the aforementioned is of course a strong regional ally of Washington and its European partners, evidence that what passes for democracy in the West is in point of fact nothing more than organised hypocrisy.
It is in defiance of this hypocrisy that this Syrian delegation arrives in Ireland to spread the word and raise awareness of what is really taking place in their country. In so doing no one should be in any doubt that they speak for a nation and society that only by dint of uncommon tenacity and fidelity to truth has managed to survive an onslaught that has been waged against it by the forces of hell.