Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
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Pundicity: Informed Opinion and Review

Latest Articles and Blog Posts

An Account of the Jisr al-Shughur Massacre in 2011

May 16, 2024  •  Substack

In an earlier post, I made reference to the Jisr al-Shughur massacre in 2011, which was committed by Syrian insurgents against the personnel of a unit of the military intelligence (aka "military security") stationed in the town of Jisr al-Shughur in Idlib province in northwest Syria. The massacre was falsely portrayed to the outside world at the time as the Syrian government's killing of supposed military defectors. In fact, what happened was that insurgents overwhelmed and wiped out a military intelligence unit in the town. The incident itself, which took place in June 2011, is noteworthy in that it illustrates that there was already an active insurgency within the first few months of the uprising.

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The Life of Hamdi Ahmad Hajj Ali

May 15, 2024

While internal developments and news from Syria's southern province of Deraa on the border with Jordan and the Golan Heights may attract less interest and attention than before, there are still regular security incidents in the province in the form of assassinations with gunfire and IED attacks. These incidents can kill civilians, local government employees, criminals and local militiamen, and security and military personnel. At least some of these attacks have been and likely still are the work of the Islamic State. These incidents do not mean that the collapse of formal Syrian government control over Deraa is imminent, but rather only that there is a persistent, chronic instability.

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Israel and Eurovision

May 12, 2024

Israel's strong performance in this year's Eurovision, which primarily came down to the huge number of points the country received in the popular vote as opposed to the vote of national juries, prompted me to write on X that a "considerable amount of the passionate pro-Palestine sentiment on social media and in demonstrations is an echo chamber." Since these remarks went viral and X is not the best platform for elaborating one's thoughts, I decided it would be better to go into more depth here.

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The Reported Israeli Strike on Harakat al-Nujaba' in Syria

May 10, 2024

The unprecedented exchange of fire between Israel and Iran last month, triggered by Israel's bombing of the Iranian consulate in Damascus, does not mean that Israel will stop trying to disrupt and damage what it sees as Iran's proxy networks. On the northern front with Lebanon, Israel continues to engage in tit-for-tat exchanges with Hezbollah and target Hezbollah personnel and assets in airstrikes. In the Syria arena, during the early hours of yesterday morning (early morning of 9 May), a rather surprising announcement came from the Iranian-aligned Iraqi faction Harakat al-Nujaba', which maintains a presence in Syria and has been known to be active in the country since at least 2013. Specifically, the group accused Israel of targeting its cultural and media centre in Syria. This announcement matches Syrian military reporting that at around 3:20 a.m., "the Israeli enemy launched an air attack from the direction of the occupied Syrian Golan, targeting one of the buildings in Damascus countryside."

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"Allahu Akbar"

May 6, 2024 at 5:30 pm

On both sides of the Atlantic, controversy over the call of 'Allahu Akbar' ('God is greater') is in the news again. As part of the coverage of the wider movement of U.S. campus protests against Israel's military campaign in Gaza and American support for Israel, there has been some debate about a four-second clip of a group of protestors shouting "Allahu Akbar" at UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles). Over in the UK, a newly elected Leeds city councillor for the Green Party- Mothin Ali- was filmed shouting "Allahu Akbar" after vowing that he and his supporters would "raise the voice" of Gaza and Palestine. For some, the call is seemingly portrayed as inherently sinister, while others seem to view it as entirely benign. To quote the sarcasm of Washington Post editorial board member Shadi Hamid: "Oh my, students are saying 'God is great' in Arabic. The horror."

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