Hints of U.S. shift toward rebels fall on deaf Syrian ears

February 27, 2013

by Nuha Shabaan and Jacob Wirtschafter

Secretary of State John Kerry’s message that the United States is determined to “accelerate change” in Damascus has yet to be absorbed by at least some supporters of the rebellion in Syria.

“You’ve promised us to support us politically and buy arms, but we haven’t got anything from you,” said Maher al-Hamwi, a spokesman for the FSA in Hama.

When asked what he would say to the Secretary of State on his listening tour of the region, Mamoun al-Kasem, a self-described moderate Islamist in Homs, amplified the skeptical tone prevalent in the Syrian opposition.

“Stop supporting al-Assad; your silence is killing us. Don’t you realize that the people will always win because they have the rights,” said the 28-year-old member of the local revolutionary council.