It has become clear that those manipulating our nation and its future are intent on passing the draft law of "partitioning Syria, degrading its women, raping its daughters"! The Council of Ministers has recently decided to form another secret commission "inlaid" with several different names with the sole aim of carrying out "several revisions" to the sectarian draft law named "The Personal Statutes Law", and passing it as fast as possible! These "several revisions" are worse and even more extreme than what is currently in the law, indeed worse than what someone intent on destroying this country in the fastest way possible could ever imagine!

This draft law is a sectarian law that nullifies the state from its very foundations and raises in its place a Medieval regime run by supposed religious leaders who are uninterested in actual religion (especially Islam, because they are called its representatives!), but rather filling their own pockets and increasing their own wealth and investments and power over people's lives and bodies. There is no way this draft law, even with revisions, could fit with any of the foundations of the state. For when the Personal Statutes Law comes into effect it will force each citizen to identify with a specific sect, a specific religion, and be dealt with on this basis, leaving the state no meaningful existence, even if the word "the State" filled every page of paper in the world. This, even after the box stating "religion" was omitted from personal identification cards (and who knows if the Princes of Darkness will come out later with a new law for ID cards including one's religion, sect, or even one's clan within the sect!! For this fits perfectly with their draft law which has begun to seem like the partition of Syria into emirates and sectarian enclaves!).
This draft law also openly legislates the degradation of Syrian women and considers them creatures to be "married off" by males (males here being those degraded shells which are unable to raise to the level of manhood in terms of humanity and partnership and equality), with her dowry divided into a "pre- and post-" payments, and based on this the law prescribes for every male the right to act as he sees fit with anyone who pays "the marriage price for her"! Starting with prohibiting her from visiting her family, and moving on to prohibiting her from marrying herself off regardless of her age or education or competency or position, and not ending with depriving her of work and education and a social life and any other facet of partnership or equality! For those who have proposed this vision still live in a world like the state of nature, believing that he who is the most ferocious is the strongest and ought to rule!
This draft law blatantly authorizes the rape of young girls by allowing those designated as "judges" to marry off teenage girls when they have reached age 13, or, rather, when "she is said" to have reached this age! (and it is the judge's responsibility to confirm this fact!! Even the geniuses of the Middle Ages can't tell us how to "confirm" a girl's age and her physical maturity!) The law also clearly authorizes the child labor for those over the age of 13!
Not only that, but the draft law degrades men in Syria too, and turns them into "male animals" with no concern or dignity other than to bow their heads to kiss the feet of the defenders of religiosity, to allow them to make the decisions according to their creeds and their psychological disorders what is
"in accord with religious law" and what is "opposed to it"! And he can do anything he wants in order to force his family to bow their heads to kiss his feet! Thereby he deprives his family in the name of "religious law" of any of the true values of "manhood"!
We reject this draft law utterly and completely. We reject the continuation of this crime against Syrian society under the name of "amendments". We reject any attempt by the "Princes of Darkness" to continue this criminal law by amending some of the words within it, because it is completely un-amendable. He who re-drafts this law knows the crime he is committing against every man woman and child in Syria, and thus brings out the most vile arrow in his quiver so that what remains is an exceptionally destructive law even if more than 80% was amended. The only place for this draft is a waste-bin buried under seven layers of earth so that the people forget what degradation was in store for them, what sectarian and religious strife, what vile violence, what life governed by beastly struggles with pretty-sounding names.
Did the Council of Ministers have any compunction about limiting to only 3 days the period by which the rest of the ministries and government bodies could submit comments about the proposed law ("if any were found")? They consider that the crime which they plan to commit against Syria through this law is already agreed upon, and only a draft to the extent of pointing out that comments "might be found!" Indeed, in making the committee and the draft law secret for two whole years, during which it took on the most vile formulation imaginable, those responsible are carrying out the most extreme form of violence against Syrian society, as if the Syrian people were their own private herd to be let out to pasture as they see fit.
And now planners of this crime have grown wary of the reactions which have begun to appear in Syria as the threads of their plot have been revealed, and so they once again form a secret committee which we totally reject.
We reject this committee first of all because the immoral draft law cannot be amended. Even if 80% of it was omitted and the remaining 20% was amended it will remain an immoral sectarian law that legitimizes violence against men (by making them submit to clerical rule) and women (by making her submit to male rule) and children (by considering them animals to be bred as fast as possible as new religious subjects.)
And there is no purpose for the formation of this committee, especially this rapidly, except to cut off the reactions which have begun to appear in Syrian society which have revealed honestly the nature of the crime being planned not just against them but against the Syrian state by way of substituting concepts and mechanisms of "Warrior-Princes " for the concepts and mechanisms of the modern state.
This committee is unacceptable because any committee that takes up this important issue without disclosing the names of its members is more properly called "a conspiracy." Don't the people have the right to know who is dragging the country into sectarian strife, legitimizing violence against women and the rape of their daughters? Who is trampling our social contracts underfoot as long as we are proud of them and as long as others envy us for them? Don't they have the right to know who is responsible for this crime which could be the worst in Syrian history against religions and especially Islam, seeing as how they invoke Islamic law, by making it appear as a discriminatory and racist and violent and backwards faith?
We also reject this committee because, since the foundation of the Syrian Commission for Family affairs in 2003, among the most prominent justifications for the committee's basic existence (in keeping with its founding law) has become working on draft laws related to the family in all its aspects. In reality this secret committee was formed in the past 2 years completely outside of the knowledge of the Commission for Family Affairs, deliberately and blatantly in order to block the work of anyone striving for a better community. Those who pushed for the creation of this committee knew that they had the obligation to disclose their work, and yet they resisted with all of "their authority" any change which would improve the condition of women and children in Syria, even to the slightest perceptible degree.
In all honesty and clarity, we hold the Syrian government and especially but not exclusively the Presidency of the Council of Ministers and the Ministries of Justice and Religious Endowment completely responsible for the strife which they are sowing in our country, and for all of the subsequent effects of this draft law merely by allowing it to be issued by the aforementioned secret committee. Their responsibility is continually compounded by the adoption of this criminal draft law alone, so what about their attempts now to let it overturn the bases of the modern state in Syria?
The attempts to legitimize the immoral vision of those who want to drag our country into strife and degradation in the name of religion, by way of calling for the creation of a new committee to amend the law—these attempts are transparent and completely self-defeating. We reject completely any result produced by this committee, which we demand publishes the names of its members publicly, as they are responsible before us and before all history.
We at the "Syrian Women Observatory" are committed to opposing this draft law in its entirety and every immoral, divisive idea which lies behind it regardless of the results, until it is banished once and for all and we can move on to live in a civilized, open, and egalitarian society free of violence and discrimination. We have always asserted that this is completely consistent with the creed of all the Semitic faiths, whether in heaven or on earth. Discrimination and violence are the law of the jungle, and are never a part of any religious law despite what this one or that one might say—those who are starting to multiply like a plague of locusts devouring all the life around it…Leaving behind nothing but ruins on which it builds an imaginary throne.

By: Bassam AlKadi, 7/6/2009, (To Whom It May Concern: Stop the "Princes of Darkness" Manipulation of Our Nation and Its Future!)

Translated by Tyler Golson

source in Arabic..