Naji Arwashan | Syrian Consul Michigan
August 25th, 2007

Re: ‘Syrian expatriates

I welcome this invitation from Creative Syria to participate in the discussion on the role of Syrian expatriates in building a better Syria. Being an expatriate myself for the last 20 years, and serving as Honorary Consul of Syria in Detroit since 2001 working on expatriates issues and concerns on daily basis, and being involved with a variety of cultural exchange programs made the topic presented by Creative Syria of a particular interest to me.

First, one should give credit to the Syrian leadership for recognizing the potential treasure of the Syrian expatriates, and for taking the initiative of issuing the necessary legislatives to keep the expatriates in touch with their homeland. This has been demonstrated by the creation of the Ministry of Expatriates, the military service ‚??badal‚?Ě decrees, and the continuous support by the government to expatriates conferences and organizations.

The response of the Syrian expatriates to the government overture has been very warm and very encouraging. When the Minster of Expatriates, Dr. Buthaina Shabaan, did a tour in U.S in 2003 we were overwhelmed in Michigan by the number of people who wanted to come to her reception. They showered her with their love and support, and many presented to her ideas for projects they would like to start in Syria. When we founded NOSSTIA (Network of Syrian Scientists and Technologist Abroad) six years ago, we were so pleased by the enthusiastic response of the Syrian scientists who were invited to the founding conference. Some of them had been away from Syria for over 30 years, and were just waiting for the opportunity to share their talents and expertise with their home-country. Also one should mention with pride the recent initiatives taken by expatriates to promote the image of Syria on the internet. The quality, the richness, and amount of volunteer work put in developing certain websites are simply inspirational. Creative Syria is certainly a bright example of what I am referring to here.

One general observation about Syrian expatriates is their desire to work independently from government bureaucracy. In the last expatriates conference organized in Damascus last May, the session that received most attention from expatriates was the one when Syrian NGOs presented their work. Conference participants wanted to hear more from independent non-government speakers, and to learn more about the NGOs activities and to find and identify ways of cooperation with them. We have seen this also in our experience with NOSSTIA where the board of trustees always values and maintains its independence from any government influence.

The Ministry of Expatriates is putting a lot of effort reaching to Syrian expatriates all over the world. But in my opinion, communication with expatriates is an area where more investment can be done. Unfortunately, there are still many expatriates who are not in the loop! Large number of them didn‚??t know about the expatriate‚??s conference or about the activities and services provided by the ministry. I would suggest here to the Ministry of Expatriates to commission to an NGO the task of starting an electronic newsletter dedicated to the affaires and news of the expatriates. The Ministry should put a big effort distributing such newsletter to all Syrian expatriates in the world (with the definite understanding that unsubscribing can be done by a click of a mouse). This certainly requires also an effort from our diplomatic missions to build and share their email lists. The newsletter would focus solely on expatriate‚??s news and would be a forum to address their questions and concerns, and also to explain new legislatives of interest to them.
The Syrian satellite channel is doing excellent work reaching out to expatriates and creating programs tailored to their need. But here we take this opportunity to advise the Syrian TV to join the league of Al-Jazeera, ART and the other prominent Arabic channels by migrating to subscription-based satellite where far more expatriate audience can be reached.

The unfortunate events of 9/11 created in the west a huge interest to learn more about the culture, religion and language of the Middle East. And here the Syrian expatriates can play an important role, on individual basis or on collective basis as clubs and associations, educating their neighbors, friends and colleagues about the richness of our culture and history. However expatriates need to take advantage of the tools available to them. The Ministry of Tourism is putting excellent publications and producing excellent CDs and DVDs about Syria that any expatriate can freely use but might not be aware of! That is another example where better communication with the expatriates can be of a great value. Sponsoring Syrian musical group to perform outside Syria is an excellent venue where Syrian expatriates can contribute. Syria has some very well established musical groups but also new talents and new groups are emerging every day. It is our experience that a good musical performance can be very effective in enhancing our image abroad. Two years ago when we sponsored Hamzeh Chacour and the Dervishes of Damascus to perform in Michigan, we were very pleased to see the Michigan theatre in Ann Arbor overbooked by American audience who were enchanted and delighted by the concert.

Second generation Syrian expatriates is a huge resource waiting to be cultivated. The national feeling of our youths and their pride of their cultural heritage is phenomenal. Private universities in neighboring countries in the Middle East have very successful summer programs created to attract their second and third generation expatriates from around the world. I believe our Syrian private schools and universities can and should start similar programs. Especially that Syria has the reputation for being the best place for learning Arabic!

Finally certain Syrian expatriates are regular visitors to Syria but some other might not be. An expatriate who has not been to Syria for a long time will be pleasantly surprised to see all the activities and animation that is taking place in Syria especially in the old quarters of Damascus and Aleppo. I strongly suggest that any expatriate can be proud if he brings a non-Syrian family member or a friend to show them round in Syria. Last year we arranged for the Consular Corps in Michigan to visit Syria. These are people who have traveled around the world. In Syria, they were impressed by the warm welcome of the Syrian people, the good food, the richness of our historical and religious sites, and by the degree to which the Roman ruins are preserved, and how close they can get to and touch those ruins. At the end of their stay, they told me with total amazement ‚??Syria is a very well kept secret!‚?Ě
I strongly believe that, we Syrian expatriates have an important role to reveal this good secret to the rest of the world!

Dr. Naji Arwashan
Honorary Consul General of Syria in Detroit

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (12 votes, average: 2.25 out of 5)
Loading ... Loading ...

129 Responses to the Article

John Bennett Says:

massage table, professional massage tables, massage tables
http://massagetoolsreview.blogspot.com
I consider Massage-Tools to be one of the leaders of The massage table industry. They only sell the same tables they use at their own spa insuring only the best for you and your clients.
click here, Massage Tools

Elizabeth Taylor Says:

video production, video production company Charlotte, LensFlare
http://lenflarecreation.tumblr.com
LensFlare Creations is a brand-new upcoming video production business based in Charlotte, NC they are focused on offering the greatest quality innovative media possible. The group at LensFlare Creations are incredibly passionate about exactly what they do.
Click Here, Charlotte Video Production Company

Anna Young Says:

video production company Charlotte, LensFlare, Click Here
LensFlare Creations is a brand-new upcoming video production business based in Charlotte, NC they are focused on offering the greatest quality innovative media possible. The group at LensFlare Creations are incredibly passionate about exactly what they do.
http://www.zimbio.com/Video+Production/articles/vmundQckalP/LensFlare+Creations+Review?add=True
video production, Charlotte Video Production Company

Douglas Clark Says:

LensFlare, Charlotte Video Production Company, Click Here
LensFlare Creations is a brand-new upcoming video production business based in Charlotte, NC they are focused on offering the greatest quality innovative media possible. The group at LensFlare Creations are incredibly passionate about exactly what they do.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZcURYlp-NE
video production company Charlotte, video production

Antonio Thomas Says:

lensflare creations, jonathan andrews, mcdonalds fish mcbites, fish mcbites commercial
http://www.newswire.net/newsroom/pr/71285-mcdonalds_fish_mcbites_bear_commercial.html
What happened during the filming of Charlotte, NC based LensFlare Creations McDonald’s√Į¬Ņ¬Ĺ Fish McBites latest commercial shoot? Well, the “bear” actually became the star of the commercial. You have to see it to believe it.
joseph robba, fish mcbites bear, fish mcbites

William Wilson Says:

lawn service leesburg va, leesburg lawn care, lawn care services leesburg va
Leesburg Lawn Care: For a beautiful lawn and garden, call Brodie Outdoor Solutions. Full lawn care service for homes and businesses in the Leesburg, VA area. Over 23 years of landscaping experience. Seasonal Special 10% discount. Satisfaction guaranteed. Call us for a free estimate: (703) 475-8795
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qp9WYlaPrxM
lawn care leesburg va, lawn care leesburg va

Barbara Garcia Says:

big idea mastermind, bim
This 100% Automated System Brought In $710,000 In 28 Days. Recently we tested a brand new marketing idea, basically doing the polar opposite of what everybody else is doing online. Results were mind blowing to say the least: First 28 days = over $710,000 net profit. First 2.5 months = almost $1.2 Million! Right now this pulls $12,485 per DAY on average.
http://bimtopteam.com
Vick Strizheus, big idea mastermind Vick Strizheus

Janice Brooks Says:

popular movies, movies and TV, most popular movies
Your #1 Source for inspiration about Movies & TV Shows in DVD, Blu-ray & Instant Videos that you can watch Anytime and Anywhere!
http://most-popular-movies.com/
new movies, best movies

John Ramirez Says:

DirecTV, Hi-Speed Internet, Dish Satellite, Excede Internet, Lynnwood
http://washington-satellite-sales-service-installation-repair.com
1-800-949-4663 HOME SATELLITE is your city’s TOP local choice for installation of both DirectTV and Dish Network television as well as Excede Internet systems. We serve all of King, Skagit, Snohomish and Whatcom Counties in Washington state.
Seattle, Hi-Def Satellite TV, Bellevue, Bellingham, Monroe

Bobby Phillips Says:

home remodeling arlington va, home renovations arlington va, general contractors arlington va
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BYJ-LuSpQ5I
Vass Construction are trusted, residential & commercial general contractors in Arlington, VA. For the past 15 years We have specialized in designing and building new homes and home remodeling in the Northern Virginia area. Call us today for all your new home construction and home renovation projects. Mention coupon code: PDQ1 to save. Call: (703) 391-1256
home builders arlington va, general contractor arlington va

Scott Thomas Says:

healthy dinner recipes, paleo diet, cooking recipes, paleo recipes
Paleo Cookbooks that show how to cook tasty meals using the most nutritious, robust and tastiest elements in the world!

With These Recipes In Your Hands, You Can Achieve The Top Health Of Your Life, Be In The Best Shape Of Your Life And Endure More Energy Than Ever Before.
http://www.specialaire.com
breakfast recipes, weight loss, healthy eating

Patrick Adams Says:

cure back pain, back pain remedies, chronic lower back pain, back pain acupuncture, relieve back pain, exercises for low back pain
http://www.relievebackpaininfo.com
Articles, Videos and Tips To Relieve Chronic Low Back Pain!
help back pain, treatment low back pain, low back pain treatment, back pain therapy, back pain problems, how to relieve back pain

Harold Lewis Says:

diamond, showing, daily, chart
Learn more about Forex Technical Analysis Techniques
http://www.automatedforextradingnews.com/forex-education-video-showing-dxy-daily-diamond-chart-pattern/
pattern, video, forex, education

Melissa Johnson Says:

guitar teacher Bakersfield, learn the guitar in Bakersfield
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qaUkvz6PpAE
Bakersfield Music lessons – learn the guitar and more today! Skilled and patient teachers Call Today – (661) 247-7435 – http://thefamilymusiccenter.com/
guitar lessons Bakersfield, music lessons bakersfield ca

Ronald Brown Says:

landscaping leesburg, landscape design leesburg va, landscaping leesburg va
Brodie Outdoor Solutions is an experienced Landscaping Leesburg, VA company with over 23 years of landscaping experience. Fully licensed & insured. 10% discount & 24 hour Emergency Services. Satisfaction guaranteed. Call us today for your free estimate: (703) 475-8795
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qp9WYlaPrxM
landscapers leesburg va, landscaping company leesburg va

Dorothy Clark Says:

landscapers loudoun county vA, landscapers loudoun county, loudoun county landscapers
Brodie Outdoor Solutions: quality Loudoun County Landscapers. Over 23 years of landscaping experience. Fully licensed & insured. Complete landscaping services: Landscape design, Irrigation and Sprinklers, Patios & Decks, Plant design & Installation, Walls and Grading Drainage. 10% discount, 24 hour Emergency Services and emergency storm clean up & tree removal. Your satisfaction is always guaranteed. Call us for a free estimate: (703) 475-8795
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHiUYZ5p8QY
loudoun county landscaping, landscaping companies loudoun county

Albert Miller Says:

patient billing software, patient billing, patient billing system
Patient Billing Solutions for healthcare providers and hospitals to effectively manage patient payments. Medical Pay Solutions helps providers implement the most effective and proven systems that increase profitability. Call us today for a free, no obligation demo: √ā¬†386-492-6174√ā¬†.
http://www.patientbillingsolutions.net
patient solutions, patient solution

Robert Sanchez Says:

sprinkler repair northern virginia, lawn sprinkler systems northern virginia, lawn sprinkler companies in northern virginia
Brodie Outdoor Solutions installs and repairs lawn irrigation and sprinkler systems in the Northern Virginia area. Fully licensed and insured professional landscapers with over 23 years of landscaping experience. we specialize in irrigation and sprinkler systems for both residential and commercial properties. Ask us about our seasonal special 10% discount. Satisfaction is 100% guaranteed. Call us today for your Free Estimate: (703) 475-8795
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=abVlldoAW3c
northern virginia irrigation systems, lawn irrigation systems northern virginia

Julie Robinson Says:

heating and cooling charlotte, charlotte heating and cooling, heating and air charlotte nc
Charlotte Heating and Cooling same day service and 24/7 emergancy service, free second opinions and free estimates on replacement systems. 100% satisfaction guarantee. Call Penguin Air Cooling and Heating: (704) 243-8877
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Tr_gbbkOm4
charlotte hvac, penguin air cooling and heating

Daniel King Says:

los angeles general contractor, Roger Perron Design and Construction
Los Angeles General Contractor, Roger Perron, Design and Construction, has been a trusted custom home builder in Los Angeles for the past 32 years. Exceptional designs, first rate service, affordable excellence, quality materials and meticulous workmanship. Call us for a Free Design consultation and complimentary design ideas! (323) 284-7543
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6ikFjd8YXk
general contractor los angeles

Nancy Scott Says:

san jose ca general contractors, contractors san jose ca, general contractor san jose ca
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncki9dNukvA
Contractors in San Jose, CA custom design, build and remodel homes and commercial property in the San Jose, CA area. Free architectural design if you select us as your general contractor. Over 30 years of experience. Licensed, insured & bonded. Free competitive estimates. Call Red Road Construction today: (925) 271-0419
home builders san jose ca, remodeling san jose ca

Ruth Thomas Says:

Bella Custom Builders, Remodeling Contractors Melbourne FL
http://remodelingmelbournefl.com
Remodeling Contractors in Melbourne, FL specialize in home remodeling, custom homes and restoration. Bella Custom Builders are family owned & operated and are fully licensed, insured and bonded. Florida General Contractor license: CGC#1510808 and Florida Home Inspector’s License: HI3420 and Florida Insurance Adjuster. Call for a free, no-hassle, in-home estimate: (321) 622-3528
General Contractors Melbourne FL, General Contractor Melbourne FL

Jose King Says:

leather motorcycle jackets, leather motorcycle jackets for women, leather motorcycle jackets for men
Womens and Mens Leather Motorcycle Jackets at great prices. We carry a large inventory of quality leather motorcycle jackets for women and men. Order online and save: http://kickassleathers.com
http://kickassleathers.com
mens leather motorcycle jackets, womens leather motorcycle jackets

Barbara Brown Says:

Cincinnati Roofing Companies, Cincinnati Roofing Company, Roofing Company Cincinnati
http://roofingcompanies-cincinnati.com
Overhead Roofing, one of the most trusted & reliable roofing companies in Cincinnati for the past 19 years. A+ rated with the Better Business Bureau. Family owned & operated and fully licensed and insured. References available. Call for a free estimate: (513) 785-0603
Roofing Companies Cincinnati, Roofing Companies Cincinnati Ohio

Christina Moore Says:

home builders san jose ca, contractors san jose ca, general contractor san jose ca
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncki9dNukvA
Contractors in San Jose, CA custom design, build and remodel homes and commercial property in the San Jose, CA area. Free architectural design if you select us as your general contractor. Over 30 years of experience. Licensed, insured & bonded. Free competitive estimates. Call Red Road Construction today: (925) 271-0419
remodeling san jose ca, san jose ca general contractors

Joe Robinson Says:

bathroom remodeling bonita springs, fort myers bathroom remodeling, bathroom remodeling naples
Bathroom Remodeling Fort Myers, Naples, Cape Coral and Bonita Springs, FL for the past 30 years. Heape Construction is family owned & operated and fully licensed & insured. Satisfaction guaranteed. Call us today for a free estimate: (239) 676-0888
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0jwgrb8cIgw
bathroom remodel fort myers, bathroom remodeling fort myers

Charles Martinez Says:

remodeling contractors port st lucie fl, general contractors port st lucie
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKqMgXO20n0
Remodeling Contractors Port St Lucie, FL, are A+ rated with the Better Business Bureau since 1994. Florida State Certified General Contractor for past 23 years. Bathroom remodeling, room additions, kitchen remodeling, doors, window replacements, siding & custom trim and crown molding. Insurance restoration. Call Sand Dollar Development of Southern FL for a free no-hassle, in-home estimate: (772) 924-0887
bathroom remodeling port st lucie fl, remodeling contractor port st lucie

Joseph Williams Says:

camelbak hydrobak
The Camelbak HydroBak provides hands-free hydration on the road or trail for minimalist expeditions.
http://outdoor-survivalgear.com/camelbak-hydrobak-50-oz-hydration-pack/
hydration pack

http://user.handasa-konsultan.com Says:

In the right after 10 years desy proven itself as being a
facility of high quality with the growth and functioning of
large-electrical power accelerators. Olympus procedures the positron-proton to electron-proton cross section rate to exactly
establish the size of two-photon return in accommodating air scattering.
No matter what vistas, pedro albizu campos could be acknowledged with retaining and promoting puerto rican. The most prevalent belief
of a yorkshire person is becoming restricted with money: we have a uk on the
grounds that In .a yorkshireman is usually a scotsman together with the kind-heartedness constricted from
himIn, which referrals how scottish may also be stereotyped as snug but not as small
as yorkshire individuals. Virgilioanderson took over as secondly most popular trending subject on tweets on thursday 2 come july 1st 2009
along with the thoughts Half inchwho’s going to be virgilio anderson?In were being scribbled
within the grouting from the mosaic glass in a bathroom cubicle at the british isles
stockpile (the cubicle minute from the eventually left inside the
east side, first floor) on 16 come july 1st 2009.

Leave a Reply

« Return to Main Page