Biggest protests in Syria to date - 12 dead

Can Assad survive? He still has his clique of Alawite army officers loyal to him. And there appear to be enough units still willing to carry out his shoot to kill orders on protestors. But for how long? Reuters: Syrian security forces shot dead at least 12 protesters on Friday as hundreds of thousands of people took to the streets across the country in the biggest protests so far against President Bashar al-Assad. Assad, facing the greatest challenge to 40 years of Baath Party rule, has sought to crush demonstrations. But although rights groups say some 1,400 civilians have been killed since March, the protests have continued unabated and swelled in size. "These are the biggest demonstrations so far. It is a clear challenge to the authorities, especially when we see all these numbers coming out from Damascus for the first time," said Rami Abdelrahman, head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Police fired live ammunition and teargas in the capital Damascus, killing five...(Read Full Post)