Another infamous Doctor of Torture and State Terror, "Papa Doc" Duvalier of Haiti, shown with a rifle in his hands, his son "Baby Doc" in the foreground. Papa Doc was actually a physician too before obtaining power:
Dr. Assad has more in common with Papa Doc every day. (photobucket source)
From this, an excerpt from the Hippocratic Oath "Dr." Bashar Assad presumably had to take when he graduated from medical school in the 90's:
I will remember that I remain a member of society, with special obligations to all my fellow human beings, those sound of mind and body as well as the infirm.
If I do not violate this oath, may I enjoy life and art, respected while I live and remembered with affection thereafter. May I always act so as to preserve the finest traditions of my calling and may I long experience the joy of healing those who seek my help.
devolving to this in the Spring of 2011 under his presidency in Syria:
Dr. Bashar Assad, whose legacy is now starting to resemble that of Papa Doc Duvalier in Haiti, and his Baath Party-controlled autocracy have sunk into the depths of human depravity and savagery. Why is his odious regime not being taken to task more ferociously by the rest of the world? A few tepid sanctions are not going to change the egregious situation highlighted below around. Much more needs to be said and done. At the very least, the UN General Assembly and Security Council should be condemning this 24/7. First of all, though, let's take a close look at what IS going on in Syria beyond the fog of propaganda:
Various human rights and media organizations have been monitoring and investigating the Assad government since protests began, despite Assad's attempt to employ Israel's "Gaza Technique", banning the international media from the country except for embedded Disney excursions and the release of State propaganda meant for journalists to regurgitate, while security forces try to shut down all efforts by citizens within the country to communicate with the outside world. What has surfaced from these truth-seeking efforts, without a doubt, is that the Assad regime is now a torture state, as the following revelations will illustrate:
1) Let's start with an older press release, dated April 15th, from Human Rights Watch:
Activists and Journalists Also Arrested and Mistreated
(New York) - Syrian security and intelligence services have arbitrarily detained hundreds of protesters across the country, subjecting them to torture and ill-treatment, since anti-government demonstrations began in mid-March 2011, Human Rights Watch said today. The security and intelligence services, commonly referred to as mukhabarat , have also arrested lawyers, activists, and journalists who endorsed or promoted the protests, Human Rights Watch said.
Syrian authorities should immediately stop the use of torture and free arbitrarily detained demonstrators, activists, and journalists, Human Rights Watch said. The government of President Bashar al-Asad should order prompt and impartial investigations into serious abuses against detainees and ensure all those responsible are brought to justice.
"There can be no real reforms in Syria while security forces abuse people with impunity," said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. "President al-Asad needs to rein in his security services and hold them to account for arbitrary arrests and torture."
Interview with Nadim Houry, Beirut Director of Human Rights Watch:
Human Rights Watch interviewed 19 people who had been detained in Daraa, Damascus, Douma, al-Tal, Homs, and Banyas, as well as several families of detainees. Those interviewed who had been detained included two women and three teenagers, ages 16 and 17. Human Rights Watch also collected information from Syrian activists about dozens of people detained in Daraa and Banyas, and reviewed the footage of some detainees released from Daraa, whose bodies appeared to have marks from torture. Those interviewed were held by various branches of mukhabarat, including state security (Amn al-Dawla), political security (Amn al-Siyasi), and military security (Amn al-Askari).
All but two of the detainees arrested during the protests told Human Rights Watch that mukhabarat officers beat them while arresting them and in detention, and that they witnessed dozens of other detainees being beaten or heard screams of people being beaten. In addition to the three children interviewed by Human Rights Watch, witnesses reported seeing children detained and beaten in the facilities where they were held.
Many told Human Rights Watch that they and other detainees were subjected to other forms of torture, including electro-shock devices, cables, and whips. Most also said they were held in overcrowded cells, and many were deprived of sleep, food, and water - in some cases, for several days. Some said they were blindfolded and handcuffed the entire time.(FULL HRW ARTICLE CONTINUED HERE)
Inside Syria's torture chambers: 'This regime is brutal but also stupid'
Adnan, a young Syrian professional in his thirties, tells of his experience as one of hundreds detained in President Bashar al-Assad's crackdown on dissent:
Adnan was arrested last Friday in Moudamiyeh, a town near Damascus, after protests in which he did not take part.
"We saw about a thousand protesters come out of the mosque and then more people came to join them. The mosque was surrounded by riot police and troops, but it was peaceful until the protesters tried to start marching, chanting "God, Syria, Freedom, that's all!". Some protesters threw stones, then we saw the security forces open fire. One seemed to target the protest leader; they shot him in the head.
We were trying to leave the town when someone shouted "Stop!" and ordered us to kneel down. It was troops from the Fourth Division [the elite unit commanded by President Bashar al-Assad's brother Maher, which has been involved in suppressing protests in Deraa, the south-western town that has become a focus for unrest].
We have always regarded the security forces with fear, but not the army. They are conscripts -- even in the lower ranks of the Fourth Division. They pulled our tops over our heads so we couldn't see clearly and pinned our arms behind our backs. Then they hit us on the back and head, sometimes with the butts of their guns. They accused us of being foreign agents, and of trying to film protests to send to the media.
We were thrown in the back of an army truck and taken to the base on the outskirts of Damascus. We were put in a room and beaten from 4pm to 4am. Can you imagine? For 12 hours without sleep. It would stop for 15 minutes and then someone else would come in and start. They accused us of working for [former Lebanese prime minister] Saad al-Hariri and the Saudi prince Bandar bin Sultan. There was no point in arguing -- they would only beat us more. (FOR THE FULL ARTICLE CLICK HERE)
Assad's Regime of Torture
President Assad reaffirms his father's legacy by quelling dissent with brute force:
"Bashar is God! Bashar is God!"
As the fists and boots and sticks pummelled his body and bloodied his face, the college student screamed out what he thought his interrogators wanted to hear: The name of Syria's president, Bashar al-Assad.
It worked. The secret policemen tired of beating him for the day and threw him back into the makeshift cell, a room inside the power station in Banias, where local prisons are full to bursting from a wave of arrests ahead of the military assault on the port city, which began earlier this month.
The respite was short-lived. Handcuffed by his wrists and ankles and blindfolded, the student, who gave testimony to a trusted local activist on condition of anonymity, was led to a car and driven to another torture cell.
"I was being beaten all over my body. I was bleeding and was saying the shahada to myself, "There is no God, but God,' because I thought I was going to die at that moment," he said.
Arrested simply for trying to travel from Banias back home to his village on the outskirts of the city, the student had nothing valuable to tell his torturers about the organised political opposition to President Assad and his family's forty-year dictatorship.
But that, it appears, was not the point.
Where the torture cells of Tadmor, Syria's desert prison, once extracted confessions from individuals accused of standing against the Assads - Communists like Akram Bunni, left partially paralysed after his spine was stretched in a torture known as the German Chair; Muslim Brotherhood members whipped with cable and stunned with electric shock devices - today's torturers appear to be pursuing a policy of deterrence and collective punishment.
The student was released after only a few days, but the message to the wider community of Banias was clear: A naked body, covered in blood, left to limp along the long road back to his village, clutching his broken hand, for all to see.
Three other young men, beaten, thrown down stairs and forced to drink water from a toilet after being starved, were also dumped naked and bloodied on a road outside Banias.
A YouTube video, claiming to have been shot in Banias but which cannot be independently verified, shows men with signs of severe beating on their backs and faces.
"Syrian security is now releasing detainees with unhealed wounds caused by torture in order to spread panic and fear among people hoping it will reduce the numbers participating in demonstrations," said Wissam Tarif, Director of Insan, a leading Syrian human rights organisation, which has documented cases of torture.
(FOR THE FULL ARTICLE CLICK HERE)
The Arab Awakening is now poised on the edge of a sword as the degenerate institutions of the past, les anciens régimes , attempt to maintain the horrors of the past through violent repression. It is incumbent upon all truly progressive forces in the world, those that really reject the authoritarian paradigm and the crushing of human and civil rights in the name of power, privilege or ideology, to speak out in solidarity with the Awakening, for it is our Awakening too.
Besides contributing to OpEdNews.com, I am also an editor. I am a student of history, religion, exoteric and esoteric, the Humanities in general and tempered advocate for peace, justice and the unity of humankind through self-realization and mutual (more...)