ANNA-News continues with the publication of eyewitness reports, which the team has made on their trip to Al-Hula (al-Houla) and in the region of Al-Hula. This new interview is with a rebel , who has been on the side of the attackers in Taldou and thus he delivers a lot of place and personal names about the terrible incident of 25 May.
While one is not able to recheck the street names (hardly) by using “conventional means” (like Google Maps), it is possible to understand the certain geographical and structural features of Taldou / al-Houla quite well by the descriptions below.
In the video report, one can see that the individual places of the armed forces/insurgents and the Syrian army are demonstrated on the basis of satellite imagery by Google Earth.
The “Setup” (a former rebel fighter, who calls his former cronies “terrorists“ and “bandits” and who is also asking rhetorical questions to the individual objectives of this attack) may seem questionable, but in reading one should not forget that this is the transcript of a video documentary and beyond, this is the translation of a translation.
This report provides a lot of tactical details of the attack on Taldou / Al-Hula and includes a lot of concrete details that speak in turn for authenticity.
ANNA-News has some notes about the circumstances of the interview:
“The person in this interview is a rebel who has forwarded himself to the authorities. We know who this person is and also know his name, but for reasons of the safety of his family, we do not bring it to the public. We vouch for the fact that he talks about things, which he has seen with his own eyes. We know, however, not the motives behind his self-denunciation.”
Here is the translation of the text from ANNA-News (source).
Underneath the article, there is the video (at minute 2:09, one can see the demonstration of the positions of rebels and the Syrian army).
A witness from among the armed rebels
“Two or three days before the massacre, there was talk about the fact, that the terrorists are preparing themselves for something. I was constantly with these bands there and really learned everything about every step, what is happening, I always was with them.
On Friday, after the prayers, a unit of the fighters gathered in the northern district of the village, which is located beyond the checkpoint, next to the place with the clock.
Larger units of rebels gathered on the Tripoli road that leads to water storage, more (units) also in the district Al-Nasiriyah, on the Satto-road and on the road that leads to the confectionery factory.
The northern units opened fire to distract the attention of the military post (checkpoint) on the place with the clock. I was with a unit on the Tripoli road, which operated in conjunction with other units.
This was the Salafi unit of Khaled Abdul Wakhed, the unity of Abdul Malek, the unit under Saleh Nidal Bakki, even more under the command of Haysam Al-Hassan, as well as units from Ikrim Akrab, Kafr Laha and also a unit of the valley in Dahab.
Besides these (units), there were still a large amount of armed strangers.
These units opened fire on the building of the military intelligence. The bullets hit the building, but also neighboring houses. One of the armed rebels fired from a bazooka, but missed the target.
He has hit the house next door, killing two members of the family Al-Zegahi, which, as it is said, just have been sitting down and peacefully drunk tea. Most of the victims of the massacre were families who were loyal to the government, and the family of a secretary of the Syrian Parliament.
The families were wealthy, but the bandits assumed them as traitors, because these families have never supported the armed rebels through donations. They were mainly killed from the unit of the Al-Hassan clan – these are people from a large family who are in our area since long time and also known as common bandits.
Next to the house of the family Al-Said Okba, there is a house of Al-Bakkur family. What do you think, why the first family was assassinated and why the second one was no hair curved by anybody? (First killed, second alive) In the neighborhood of the victims lived many people. Why was none of them molested? Because it was a target-oriented action.
This is the place with the clock in Taldou [in the video at 2:09 - apxwn]. To the right is the road that leads to the tower. To the north, there is the road towards Qasr, at the left, the road goes to Kafr Laha.
The house on the northern corner of the square belongs to the family Abbara. Further back, there is the building of the local department of the Baath Party. On the top of this building there was an observation post of the security forces, whose position was secured by sandbags. Farther north, about 50 meters behind the Baath building, there is the Al-Nouri-bridge.
And here is the street, where the units of the bandits have gathered at the day of the massacre, and from there they took the checkpoints at the place with the clock under fire, to distract the attention of the soldiers from the assault, which should happen from the east.
The main road from Al-Hula [Taldou - apxwn] runs from south to north. Here you can see the corner of Satto Street, where the unit of the Al-Hassan clan has gathered. Further south there is a left turn; this road leads to the water tank. Further south down the main street, we see an arch over the entrance to the city.
The Department of Military Intelligence was located just north of this arch, on the left side of the main road, and also on the roof of this building there was an observation post. Had the security forces opened fire towards the north, they would have hit (injured) their own comrades.
On the right side of the main road, in the south of the archway, there is the home of th family Okba Al-Said (which was wiped out as the first family by the bandits).
The second family, who was killed by the bandits, lived in the northwest. Even there, the family Abdul Rasak has a house, and this family has become a victim of the bandits. So what is all this talk about the Schabiha or the army, which would have been between these two points, in a region, which was entirely controlled by the rebels.
Another fact is that these families were completely murdered, including the children, while in the immediate vicinity; there are many other families with children. Why were some killed, and the others had no problems?
Very close to the house of the family of Al-Okba, the family of Al-Bakkur has a house, the brother of the family head is one of the most influential bandit chief in the region. Why did nothing happen to the family of Al-Hassan, where many family members belong to the bandits?
Why do you think, were the families of Al-Said and Abdul Rasak completely murdered, while their respective neighbors – Al-Hassan and Al-Bakkur – have remained completely untouched?
They moved targeted to the house of the family Al-Rasak, penetrated, and then they killed all there, afterwards they moved on.”