[youtube http://youtu.be/i5Mko4Yzmls?]

Ali Ferzat, Syria’s most loved cartoonist was beaten by mukhabarat and thrown out of a car. His most recent cartoon was of Qaddafi stopping in his Jeed to pick up Bashar al-Assad, who was hitching a ride. The cartoon and Ali’s site is no longer available on the internet….

Two opposing views of Syria’s economy. One claims Syria can tough out the economic hit for quite a bit longer. The other, by Carnegie, says no. Master Card in Syria is down. More top Syrians are sanctioned by the EU. Gulf Sands, the oil company partly owned by Rami Makhlouf is hit with more troubles and the West is chiseling away at the Syrian economy.

Gulf countries, in an apparent reversal of position, seem to be distancing themselves from the US effort to strangle Assad’s regime. Saudi arrested anti-Assad demonstrators and Qatar has backed away from its anti-Syria diplomacy as its leader heads for a visit to Iran.

Syria’s Opposition woes are cataloged by Reuters. Here is a photo of Ali Ferzat.