Syrians are organizing campaigns on Facebook and Twitter that call for a “day of rage” in Damascus this week, taking inspiration from Egypt and Tunisia in using social networking sites to rally their followers for sweeping political reforms.Syria's also had no problem crushing any dissent. Let's see how much coverage this gets. Something tells me Bashar Assad won't be heeding international calls to step aside.
Like Egypt and Tunisia, Syria suffers from corruption, poverty and unemployment. All three nations have seen subsidy cuts on staples like bread and oil. Syria’s authoritarian president has resisted calls for political freedoms and jailed critics of his regime.
The main Syrian protest page on Facebook is urging people to protest in Damascus on Feb. 4 and 5 for “a day of rage.” It says the goal is to “end the state of emergency in Syria and end corruption.” The number of people who have joined Facebook and Twitter pages calling for protests on Friday and Saturday is still relatively small, and some are believed to live outside the country.Gee, I wonder why? They may also have a little trouble getting the word out.
President Bashar Assad said in an interview published Monday that his nation is immune from the kind of unrest roiling Tunisia and Egypt.
Facebook is banned in Syria, which makes organizing more difficult — even though many Syrians manage to access the social networking site anyway. More than 2,500 people have joined the page calling for protests on Feb. 4-5, with another 850 joining a page in favor of President Assad.One thing in Assad's favor, at least with the left and the media, is his hatred of Israel. So he'll be portrayed sympathetically.
He is seen by many Arabs, however, as one of the few leaders in the region willing to stand up to arch enemy Israel. And his support for Palestinian and Lebanese militant groups opposed to the Jewish state as well as his opposition to the US invasion of Iraq has won him more support among his people than other Arab rulers.