Text of speech introducing President Bush at Freedom Collection launch in D.C.

Good morning. My name is Ammar Abdulhamid. I am a Syrian dissident. In September 2005, I was forced to leave my country for criticizing President Bashar Al-Assad.

In exile I have lived in Washington with my loving family: my wife, Khawla, our daughter, Oula, and our son, Mouhanad. Together, with help from our friends here and in Syria, and with funding from the Middle East Partnership Initiative, a program established by President George W. Bush, we launched a foundation dedicated to supporting pro-democracy activists in Syria and across the Middle East. Continue reading

The Good Boycott!

The boycott against Danish goods by righteous believing Muslims all over the world, albeit hardly justifiable on any logical ground in this case, does, nonetheless, signal an interesting development that should in principle be encouraged.

For while we need to point out that resort to this procedure in this case may not be correct, the method itself, we should notes, is a very legitimate, effective and downright civilized manner for expressing discontent – one that is far superior morally and tactically to rioting and arson. Continue reading

Reform starts with a Lebanon withdrawal

Special to The Daily Star

The Syrian regime did not have to find itself in the precarious position it is in today, maligned by all for its behavior. It did not have to find itself facing sanctions imposed by the United States. It did not have to face United Nations Security Council Resolution 1559, calling for a Syrian pullout from Lebanon. And it did not have to face the outrage expressed after the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Continue reading

Muslims Against the Ideology of Terror

Voice of America – ON THE LINE  / Host: Eric Felten 

Host: Muslims against the ideology of terror. Next, On the Line.

Host: Leaders of a dozen groups representing Muslim Americans and Arab Americans of other faiths met in Washington to speak out against terrorism and in favor of democratic freedoms. Zainab Al-Suwaij is the executive director of the American Islamic Congress. She said the conference was an effort to confront the fact that Many people use Islam as a reason to kill innocent people. One of the speakers at the conference was Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, a physician in Phoenix, Arizona. Continue reading

Muslims Against Terrorism

Voice of America – ON THE LINE  / Host: Eric Felten 

Host: Muslims Against Terrorism. Next, On the Line.

Host: From the murder of school children in Beslan, Russia, to the beheading of foreign workers in Iraq, Islamic terrorists continue to kill innocent people in what they say is a holy war against the U-S and the West. But an increasing number of Muslims are speaking out against this terrorism. Abdel Rahman al-Rashed is the general manager of the Arab satellite television station Al-Arabiya. He wrote in the London daily newspaper Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, that it is “shameful and degrading” that Muslims commit acts of terrorism. Pointing out that, quote, “The majority of those who carried out suicide operations against buses, schools, houses, and buildings around the world in the last ten years are Muslims,” Mr. Rashed said that Islam “has suffered an injustice” at the hands of those who preach violence. Continue reading

Arab Liberals: the last hope for reform

Special to The Daily Star

An interesting phenomenon has been taking place of late: coverage in the international media of the activities of Arab and Muslim terrorists has given way, for a short while at least, to a consideration of Arab liberal intellectuals and activists and their potential role in the longed-for reform process in the Arab world.  Continue reading