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ARABICA - A Daily Shot Of What the Arab World is Saying/Hearing/Sharing
Kristen Gillespie


A R A B I C A
ارابيكا


SYRIA, THE MOVIE
*The Syrian Revolution Facebook group posted what looks like a 3-D movie trailer for the revolution and a call to protest this Friday. "From the first drop of blood that fell from our martyrs, the legitimacy of the Assad regime fell apart with it," the opening message to viewers reads. A man clad in dark clothes holding a gun stands in front of a 3-D protester holding a hand-written sign reading "the people want the regime to fall" and a pin espousing the revolution. The armed man, labeled "Assad's thug," opens fire on the protester.

SYRIA, THIS IS NOT A MOVIE
*In a video shot in Daraa that was uploaded on May 18th, live sniper fire hits unarmed civilians in the street as they chant, "the people want the regime to fall." Four minutes in to the clip, snipers open fire on an empty ambulance. A few seconds later, a man is down in the street, trying to roll himself to safety. More sniper bullets hit him, and the man filming shouts in panic, "they finished him off – God save him."

The scene shifts to a different street, where an ambulance is trying to pull out from a small alley into the street. Snipers hit the passenger side at 5:05 minutes in. The glass shatters, and a man in the street, crouched close to the ground, tentatively reaches up and tries to open the passenger-side door, but it is locked. At 5:34, the camera films the inside of the ambulance, where the medic is slumped to the side. They unlock the door to try to get medical help for the man, but he appears to be dead.

GADDAFI REPORTS
Libyan government spokesman Khaled al-Kaeem denied a persistent rumor in the Arab media that Muammar Gaddafi's wife and daughter Aisha have fled to Tunisia. "The Gaddafi family is still in Libya," al-Kaeem said, adding: "Where else would they be?" The spokesman also rebuffed media reports that Oil Minister Shukri Ghanem defected to Tunisia, saying "he was out of the country on official business and will return."

OBAMA REACTIONS
Immediate reactions from the Twittersphere to President Obama's speech on the Middle East:

*Samih Touqan tweets, "nothing new in Obama's speech except that the Arab people and their revolutions are in control and settling old accounts."

*Shady al-Mahmoudi says, "A summary of Obama's speech: love, longing, revolution, money and Salam Alaykum good-bye."

*Jad Hammoud heard in Obama's speech that "we America are with Assad forever. We are with the man who kills people in the streets."

May 19, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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