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My Role in the Syrian Revolution

4 March 2013 One Comment

Dr. Rufaida Al Habash

Dr. Rufaida Al Habash
Hama, Syria

“I am looking for a job, for a house, for freedom in my home, Syria.”


Married at the age of 18, I moved from Damascus to Hama in 1976. Religious freedom was in the city of Hama on its height, which encouraged me to start my work in my house, and actually began educating girls and interpreting Quran for them. Because of the bloody massacre and incidents of deadly violence that occurred in Hama in 1982, all religious activities stopped in mosques, all the lessons, and I stopped working for years.

After a while I went back to meet girls again, and because of this I was imprisoned for 12 hours and I was asked to stop my activities in homes. Due to this and to the increase in the number of students, I decided to get an official permission from the government for opening a licensed Institute.

In those days the city was still suffering from the effects of the massacre, which reflected badly on the people of the city and on the religion and the preachers.

In fact, the reason that helped me to have an institute in such difficult circumstances is that I’m not from the city of Hama originally, and I am a schoolgirl to Sheikh Ahmad Kuftaro, who was a friend of power, and who taught us always not to interfere in politics.

Before the revolution, I had a hard time with the regime and I had to be questioned monthly by the FBI. Finally, I was fired from the institute because of my extra activities and dialogues I held in the institute. And during the revolution, Al-Andaluse Institute for Islamic Studies has been burnt.

At the beginning of the revolution, I incited the protesters to march peacefully to claim their rights. I was thinking it is time to change the years of oppression and suppression but in a non-violent way. Violence will only generate greater violence. Also, I had the chance to reach greater audiences at international conferences; I tried to get the opportunity to speak and to collect donations, but in a very careful and secret way.

The donations were distributed with the help of my students whose families, relatives, and neighbors had suffered a lot from the negative effects of the revolution, which turned to be a bloody one. Donations were allocated to buy the basic needs for the families whose living supporters were arrested or even killed. Also, some of the donations were spent to buy medicine and to help in private home hospitals.

The image of the suffering girls in my country inspired me to write this poem:

What bothers me … a voice ringing in my ears!
On the threshold of her demolished home

A Syrian girl cries….. I hear her words:

Oh! My wound is bleeding
Where are you, my mum?
Mum … I am glad you are dead
Glad you did not know,
About my four brothers…Scattered…Dead
About fire fragments that distorted my soft cheeks …
About the bloody head of my father on my shoulder’s rest
I will stay here…and will not run away…

My ground is Here
My nation is Here
My home is Here
My doll is Here
And one day victory will be Here…

Building of Al Andaluse Institute for Islamic Studies in Hama, Syria

The pain in my heart emerged in words of a provocative song that can be watched here.

During the last Ramadan I had been to Egypt with my son as I have TV recording program on Iqraa Channel. However, we were not able to go back home because my son (28 years old) was wanted to join the Syrian Military forces. We could not go back as my son will be taken from the airport to join the Syrian forces to help in the battle of killing Syrian people.

In Egypt I get the chance to speak on different satellite channels about the brutality of the regime; I tried to uncover the truth about the Syrian media lies and about the brutality and violence going on Syria led by the Syrian forces.

Now I am in Qatar with my two sons. The eldest son’s wife and three children are still in Damascus with no means to bring them here. I am looking for a job, for a house, for freedom in my home, Syria.

Dr. Rufaida Al Habash is an Islamic Studies professor, lecturer, and leadership trainer. She established the Al Andalus Institute, the largest Quranic studies institute for women in Syria.


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One Comments to “My Role in the Syrian Revolution”
  1. Daniel S. Moskowitz says:

    When I posted an Article from the Christian Science Monitor on what is going on on the Syrian/Lebanese Border, I was told by someone in a Facebook Group to “Chill Out and Go Have a Drink”. Unfortunately, I don’t Drink Alcohol. So, I am forced to Face the Reality of the HORROR occuring in Syria along with the APATHY of most of my Fellow Citizens of the United States about this Genocide. Nevertheless, I do believe that We are ultimately rewarded for COURAGE….not for Cowardice, and this Situation in Syria is forcing me to REAPPRAISE my Perspective towards the World and towards many People in my Life. Sometimes, we avoid Facing up to What is Going On in the World because we also want to Avoid FACING OURSELVES!

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