Israel attacks Syria: A Night on Twitter

The Israeli rocket strikes on Mount Qasioun last night produced an almost immediate explosion of Twitter commentary, despite the wee hours when the action took place. Those opposed to the Syrian opposition – whether for fear of the Jihadists or Syria falling into the hands of a Saudi-Israeli-US axis – were sort of triumphant at seeing the rebels exposed on the same battlefield as the Israelis, while there was perhaps some embarrassment dressed up as bravura from the other side. Either way, the massacred civilians of Banias have fallen off the news cycle, not that global media attention has really made any difference to anything, despite the intense glare directed at this most horrific of conflicts.*

This is what set people off – rebels in the main video footage that went viral muttering Allahu akbar as the bombs rained down and fire clouds rose:

There was some online debate about whether that was really meant as a celebratory statement, but it seems likely from the way it’s said that it was; it wasn’t clear at this stage who was conducting the attacks (though it was hardly FSA standard fare). Anyway, the image of Syrian rebels cheering on the Israeli military has already seered itself in people’s minds.

Which led to:


And analysis from journalists, such as:


On the other side, there was an attempt to bring the discussion back to the war on the ground:*

While some stated boldly that:

Or suggested that “the Israeli raids on Syria mean that the United States and Israel have chosen to carry out surgical operations here and there rather than engage with the revolutionaries”, so it wasn’t support for the rebels at all:

And a number of observers picked up on Egyptian-Palestinian poet Tamim al-Barghouti’s comments on Saturday, after an earlier Israeli attack on what appeared to be a convoy of weaponry heading into Lebanon for Hizbullah. Barghouti insisted on according Hizbullah the respect of a “resistance” movement that the Syrian opposition rejects (tweeting, “He who fires shots at Hizbullah fires them with Israel”):*

Meanwhile, the Israeli report that Assad’s regime used chemical weaponry against its opponents – which provoked a week of debate over whether Obama’s infamous “red line” had been crossed – may have been intended as the requisite fig leaf Israel sought to take major action against Assad and/or his weaponry, some suggested.

But wait – maybe the red line was never intended to be as red as that after all:


* disclosure! – I tweeted too:

* mumana3a = resistance

* takhween = to accuse of treachery

2 thoughts on “Israel attacks Syria: A Night on Twitter”

  1. It’ll be interesting to see how it develops. I can’t say that I side with the Syrians (but I also don’t agree that Israel needed to bomb Syria as a result).

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