chatter of clouds

The old town of Maamloula in Syria, one of the oldest christian towns in the world , and one of the only three towns whose inhabitants still speak the language of Christ;s language has been taken over by Al Qaeda factions who have kicked out the christian inhabitants after slaughering some, threatening others to convert to islam (as if these terrorists had anything to do with islam)  or else die. 12 nuns have been abducted as well 7 innocent young men. Historic and ancient houses and churches (mar thakla, mar tooma and many others) as well as historic icons have been burnt. It is a beautiful unique town whose buildings abut and carve into the mountain cliffs, your very gateway into the town is through a narrow crevice between cliffs. 

Dec 4, 13 1:03 am
chatter of clouds

Sorry, its Maa'loula (my own transcription). 

Dec 4, 13 1:05 am
Non Sequitur

Christ never existed and people should stop holding on to insulting philosophies and superstitions from all forms of "ism".

Dec 4, 13 8:05 am

Most historians agree that Christ existed.

Dec 4, 13 10:18 am

Whether Christ existed or not is irrelevant. The important issue here is a bunch of cannibals destroying a world heritage site and murdering its residents. Some of the buildings in Maaloula date all the way back to the 4th century.

Dec 4, 13 10:38 am

The abrahamic relgions were all created by esoteric secret societies (and probably reptiles).  Lots of beautiful culture but too much hate.  Shame that people see each other's differences rather than similarites.  Divid & conquer?  Sorry, christians, jews, & muslims but you've all been played, playerz!

Dec 4, 13 11:51 am
chatter of clouds

Per Parad0xx86, its irrelevant what is thought of christianity or religion, the point is the destruction of a unique town, historic architecture and the muder and abduction of innocent people.

Dec 4, 13 11:54 am

Truly barbaric to go into this town and do this sort of thing.

I like the way it's wedged into the mountainside.  I also like the vegetation, or lack thereof.  It makes the town all that more prominent.

In a way, though not exactly, it reminds me of this, though the access is not as precarious as this (in Greece):

It would be interesting to see how the houses were brought up to date to provide water and sanitation, if that was done.  I wonder about that whenever I see old houses around the Mediterranean basin.

It also reminds me of the opening scene of "The Exorcist" where the older priest is involved in an archaeological dig in this area (actually northern Iraq) and comes upon a carved specimen giving him the premonition that a fight with something evil was forthcoming, and he returned to the U.S. to attend to such a fight.

Christ existed in my book.  Christ was cool.  Gandhi once said something like 'I like your Christ.  I'm not so sure about your Christians.  They are nothing like your Christ.'  No need to evaluate this.  Just something for those from a Christian belief system to think about.

Dec 4, 13 11:59 am
chatter of clouds

more images (the narrow entry to the town between cliffs)

Dec 4, 13 12:14 pm
chatter of clouds

many historic building you see in the pcitures have been burnt down according to the inhabitants of the town.

Dec 4, 13 12:15 pm

What a shame.  Those pics are beautiful.  Its very sad how something that stood for so long fighting against and working with the forces of nature (gravity, weather, etc.)  is being destroyed in such a short time frame by the most destructive force of nature (humans). 

On a side note....

This would fall into James Corners definition of "fit structure."  There is something about these "fit structures" that is so powerful.  This absolute symbiosis/harmony with the terrain is something that is seldom achieved in the modern world.  I have done a lot of research  into pueblo cliff dwellings and I am always amazed when I imagine the mentality of the people who built them and how it relates to the contemporary mentality behind some landscape urbanism projects.  This sensitivity to the natural terrain has been lost for a long time and is now just starting to re emerge.  These "fit structures" are so beautiful because they are simultaneously monumental and humble...There are very few things that exist within that paradox.  In my opinion, achieving that paradox is the ultimate goal in architecture.  

Dec 4, 13 1:31 pm

Simultaneously monumental and humble, I like that.  Michael Benedikt would say they aren't embarrassed to be themselves, but they also aren't boastful.

The city does look beautiful.

Dec 4, 13 1:44 pm
chatter of clouds

Maa'loula is emblematic in that the whole town is historically preserved (up to the Al Qaeda invasions) and has a significant spiritual valour . Syrian Christians and other minorities are being killed and evicted, ancient churches and other places of worship are being destroyed by so called  'Rebels'. 

However, this is not merely "human nature". Human nature does not point out who is doing what. "Human nature" also is depressed watching what is happening to these poor people. 

These same inhumani takfiri forces behind the pillages have been supported - logistically tactically, financially, media-wise, morally and so on- by the US administration (at least up to the turn in foreign policy- it is said that the support is ongoing from the base in Jordan), Saudi Arabia, Qatar, other GCC countries, Turkey, Israel, France, Jordan. The forces unleashed against the regime to gain tactical privileges in Syria are the same used in Iraq where nearly everyday 10's to people die in car bombs. The roots of these terrorists are to be found in the CIA nourished Jihaddists of Afghanistan and Central Asian countries used against the Soviet Union and now subcontracted for a different reason. 

These forces are changing the demographics, cultures and variegated multi-denominational nature of the region. However, without support, these forces would dwindle down to nothing. The town is not suffering from a storm or "human nature"; it is suffering the consequence of active manipulation in support of these terrorists on the part of the above-mentioned actors. 

Dec 4, 13 7:59 pm

^^^ Agreed. Syria is not like Egypt. The muslims and Christians lived peacefully together in Syria and they still continue to do so. The cockroaches coming from outside are messing things up.

We have hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees in Turkey and now they began migrating to Istanbul and other big cities. Somehow they find rented accommodation outside the camps. The AKP administration is giving them jobs, money. Not that there is anything wrong with that but the administration will give them Turkish citizenship or a similar legal status so that they can vote for AKP, the very people who feed Al Nusra.

Perhaps Lebanon can take the Christians as refugees if/when things get worse.

Dec 5, 13 9:48 am

Inhuman forces?  See, I've been telling you all that reptiles controll the world.  Finally some vindication!

Dec 5, 13 10:00 am
chatter of clouds


Right from the get go, the terrorists' motto was this: " Christians to Beirut, Alawaites to the coffin"

Which is to say, this would be exactly what they wish, for Christians to be driven out of Syria to Lebanon. In due course - and we can see it self actualizing in Lebanon - they hold the same ambition for Lebanon, targetting minorities and moderates. These are not forces that can be contained. This is exactly why many lebanese are now fighting against the terrorists in Syria proper on the side of the regime. They're coming for us as well - and Lebanon is of course the country of minorities in the area as well as being traditionally liberal and moderate in outlook (although rife with greed, corruption and the rest). It'll transform into a blood bath.

Also, Lebanon has already taken on board a huge number of syrians, moslems of all sects and christians.  They might now well constitute a third to a half of the resident population in Lebanon. Its a tiny country already iincapacitated by its own internal power struggles, a dire lack of appropriate social/economic security and its diverse involvement on the Syrian stage, on both sides of the struggle. Lebanon, unfotunately, has its share of terrorists and the northern boundering region forms a breeding ground and a geographical bridge to the Syrian terrotiries. Naturally, its a two way traffic for terrorists arriving from Syria as well.

Should you visit Beirut, you'll find a huge number of Syrians many of whom have no lodging.

The Syrian regime is now getting the better of the terrorists' lot. Thus things should get better (or might get worse before getting better - especially in Lebanon with indirect-declaration-of-war on it by the Saudi authorities).  So we might see a more significant  inverse influx of Syrians back into Syria (there are some people returning back). And this is rightfully so.

What all this proves is that what is bad for Syrians, is bad for Lebanese, Turks (I don't mean the Turkish government) and all other neighbouring countries. It is even bad for the Gulf countries in the long run, Its about time to stop the idiotic skirmish with Iran/Syria and focus on who really is pulling the puyppet strings in the region. Unfortunately, there is no reasoning with fanatics and the corrupted hypocrites in the Gulf area,.. so it seems.

Lets see what happens apropos the US shift in policy towards Iran.

Dec 5, 13 12:34 pm

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