Syria Forces Shell Restive Daraa
Tank fire reported in contested town
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 1, 2011 10:45 AM CDT
In this citizen journalism image made on a mobile phone, taken on Saturday, April 30, 2011, Syrian protesters carry candles during a night gathering in the coastal city of Banias.   (AP Photo)

(Newser) – Syrian army tanks today shelled the old quarter of Daraa, a city at the heart of the country's six-week-old uprising and rolled in more reinforcements to the area, which has been under siege for nearly a week, said an eyewitness. Residents have remained defiant: Unable to leave their homes, they have chanted "God is Great!" to each other from their windows in the evenings, infuriating security forces and raising each other's spirits. Daraa has been without water, fuel or electricity since Monday, when the regime sent in troops backed by tanks and snipers to crush protests seeking an end to President Bashar Assad's authoritarian rule.

Tanks fired shells into the heart of Daraa's ancient Roman quarter Sunday, said a resident who lives on the outskirts of the city. He said he could identify the weaponry because he was a former soldier. The death toll has soared to 545 nationwide from government forces firing on demonstrators—action that has drawn international condemnation and US financial penalties on top figures in his regime.

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May 1, 2011 6:40 PM CDT
Sounds like another war. WWII made this country rich. If we un-outsourced our manufacturing jobs we could at least profit from playing World Police everywhere from Afghanistan to Libya.
May 1, 2011 1:49 PM CDT
Jeez, can't the Syrian citizenry defend themselves? Why not? Oh, they've all been disarmed just like they want to do the citizens here in the good 'ol USA- Can anyone guess why now? Only reason Libyan rebels have been able to defend themselves is some of them ARE ARMED- the military that have defected IF there'd been NO MILITARY to defect in Libya, you can bet Libyan citizens would be crushed too-