03 June 2006

Syria discovers terrorism

It was a relatively low profile piece of news.

Syrian forces stop 'terrorist' attack, says MSNBC.

Damascus: Five dead as security forces foil 'terrorist' attack, says Albawaba

Notice how both headlines have the T-word in quotes. Probably the politically correct writers are not sure about the right term for this outstanding case. Anyway, the report itself is short and subdued:

DAMASCUS, Syria - Syrian security forces stopped an armed "“terrorist"” attack on Friday that targeted a building behind the premises of the state-run television, the official SANA news agency reported. State television said two gunmen and one guard were killed during the attack on the building near the Ummayad square in central Damascus. Three of the attackers were arrested. Authorities also arrested a group of 10 men who tried to storm the building, SANA reported without elaboration.

The Syrian officials do not mince words, however:

An official source in the interior ministry told SANA the "special security forces countered a fanatic terrorist group when raised suspicion in the region of Customs headquarters behind the Omayyad's square in the western entrance of Damascus."

"Fanatic terrorist group" - no more and no less.

Debkafile ascribes the whole shebang to Al Qaeda, but, as usual with Debkafile, this is neither here nor there. In any case, the people that are usually heroes and martyrs in Damascus lingo, have suddenly became "fanatic terrorists". Confusing, innit?

Where is that universal confusion sign?


Cross-posted on Yourish.com

Update: BBC also contributed its own take on the matter: it calls these nice folks "gunmen". Interesting how will Damascus view this?