One thing I despise about the media is that they do one interview with a Sunni who divorced or is going to divorce his Sunni wife, then they make it look like its a trend. Well, you cannot do that. You need at least several observations to make a trend. Below is the Sunday Telegraph story on this defected major who is married to an Allawi, and they support the opposing sides. What I found interesting and illuminating is the fact that the city is divided between Allawis and Sunnis. I have heard in the past from many Sunnis, that the Allawis already had their neighbourhoods in Homs. They were already separate. Of course the regime deepened the sectarian divide that existed due to the French mandate and Ottoman empire's influence. Another reason for sectarian divides lies in the wars between different sects, starting from the Mogul invasions onwards (repression existed in the Umayyad and Abbasid eras. But these differences became more serious as a result of the Safavid-Ottoman divisive politics.
Here is the Sunday Telegraph article, a bad omen for sure:
As Major Haitham Emhammed prepared to return to Syria from his hiding place in Lebanon and fight for the overthrow of President Bashar al Assad's regime, his wife called him repeatedly on his mobile phone.
Mrs Emhammed, who is still inside Syria, wasn't calling to urge him to fight for freedom, or even to beg him to be careful. His wife, a member of the Alawite ethnic group that make up Mr Assad's hard-core of support, was calling her Sunni Muslim husband to lambast the rebel movement he has joined, and bemoan the fact that he had left his family.
"She calls me every two hours to tell me how awful it is that the protesters - the 'terrorists', are killing the Alawite soldiers," said Major Emhammed.