Friday, 6 May 2016

“Pray for Palmyra”, concert conducted by Gergiev, in Palmyra

Thank you Syria and Russia for the beautiful concert that took place today in Palmyra. I confess I watched it with tears in my eyes but my heart was levitating with the supernatural and magical power. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart. (‘The Old Sniper‘)

The concert “Pray for Palmyra. Music revives ancient remains” by Russian conductor Valeri Gergiev is scheduled to go ahead in Palmyra, Syria on Thursday, May 5. It will open with a welcome address by the conductor. Russian President Vladimir Putin will also make an appearance via video link. Consecutive translation from Russian to English and Arabic will be provided for both.
The date of the concert coincides with the handover for burial of the remains of special forces officer Aleksander Prokhorenko, dubbed the ‘Russian Rambo,’ who died after ordering an airstrike on his own position after he was surrounded by IS fighters. His remains will depart Moscow for his home village of Gorodky, Orenburg Region, where they will be buried in a ceremony with military honours.
In April, Palmyra was recaptured by the Syrian Army from the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL). Russian air strikes provided support to the Syrian armed forces in their re-taking of the town.

by Stephen Lendman

On May 5 at 5:00PM Moscow time, renowned Russian conductor Valery Gergiev with musicians from St. Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theater orchestra performed a moving concert amidst the ruins of Palmyra’s ancient theater in remembrance of its US-sponsored terrorist victims.

Syrian forces greatly aided by Russian air power and intelligence liberated the historic city in March, ISIS suffering a strategic defeat.

Putin spoke by videoconference, expressing thanks “for this wonderful humanitarian event today, this concert in Palmyra, now liberated from the terrorists. I see this event as a symbol of gratitude, memory and hope.”

“It expresses gratitude to all who fight terrorism at the cost of even their own lives, memory for all victims of terror, no matter where or when these crimes against humanity are committed, and, of course, hope, hope not only to restore Palmyra as part of humanity’s heritage, but to free today’s world from this terrible scourge of international terrorism.”
“To do this, each and every one of us must look at any success in the fight against terrorism as a common victory, and always, everywhere, must see any victim of terror as a personal loss and sorrow. Only with this attitude to this absolute evil will we be able to defeat it once and for all.”

“I know that today’s event involves great inconveniences and dangers for all taking part, the dangers associated with being in a country at war, and with military operations still going on not so far away. This demands great strength and effort on your part and certainly great courage.”

Titled With a Prayer from Palmyra: Music Revives the Ancient Walls, maestro Gergiev was joined by cellist Sergei Roldugin, St. Petersburg’s House of Music artistic director.

Works by Prokofiev, Bach and Schedrin were performed. Audience members included Syrian and Russian soldiers, invited dignitaries, along with area residents including children. Gergiev addressed them, saying:

“We protest against barbarians who destroyed wonderful monuments of world culture. We protest against the execution of people here on this great stage.”

The memory of Senior Russian Lieutenant Alexander Prokhorenko was honored. Surrounded by ISIS terrorists in Homs governorate in mid-March, he called in an airstrike on himself to help eliminate them.

He was posthumously awarded the title of Hero of the Russian Federation, the nation’s highest honor, for exceptional courage and heroism. He gave his life to save others.

The concert can be heard through the following link:

The deeply moving event on hallowed ground in a war zone had special significance. Russian media deservedly gave it extensive coverage. In America, it got short shrift.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”

Visit his blog site at

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