Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘city of Daraa

Step Up in Syria, Mr. President

It’s not just about chemical weapons

It’s about stopping a brutal dictator’s war.

Written by a Lebanese politician, confirmed Israeli spy/agent? (see note and link)

Fuad (Fouad) Seniora, former Lebanon PM, published in Foreign Policy this Sept. 10, 2013

As the United States contemplates whether to intervene in Syria, one cannot but look back and wonder how a brutal despot managed to turn a peaceful revolution into one of the ugliest civil wars of this generation.

We all know how it started. (Not many do know in the western States)

The people of the southern city of Daraa spontaneously took to the streets in March 2011, asking for retribution after their children were tortured by the regime’s internal security forces.

And for over 6 months, as demonstrations spread across the country, Syrians kept peacefully protesting for justice and systemic reforms. The regime’s excessive use of force reflected its brutal nature, but Syrians were equally stubborn in seeking a life of freedom, justice, and dignity.

This did not begin as a violent uprising. As Syrians faced bullets with their bare chests in those early days, the demonstrators kept chanting “peaceful, peaceful” and “the Syrian people are one.”

But the atrocities of the regime and its supporting gangs, the shabiha, eventually forced the Syrian people to take up arms.

The United States now faces a critical decision about whether it will make Bashar al-Assad’s regime pay for its latest atrocity — the use of chemical weapons on a Damascus suburb, which killed hundreds of innocent people.

If the United States and the international community fail to deal with the ongoing war — and in particular the latest chemical attack — it will send a disastrous message to tyrants across the globe that the world will stand idly by while they slaughter their citizens.

The West should do more than deal with this single attack: It needs to lead a new process to protect Syria and the broader Arab world from fragmentation.

It can do so by supporting the forces of moderation, harnessing the spirit of those Syrian protesters who took to the streets early in the revolution calling for peaceful change.

The current strategy has led to results directly opposed to Western interests: It has kept the Syrian regime alive and capable of wreaking havoc across the region, radicalized the opposition, and allowed larger Iranian involvement in the Middle East. It is time to change course.

There has already been international intervention in Syria — on the side of the regime. (And far many more support to the foreign mercenaries on the side of the extremist  jihadist takfiri Nusra Front)

In stark contrast to the many countries that expressed moral sympathy with the Syrian people, Russia, Iran, and Hezbollah have not hesitated to bolster Assad’s killing machine. They have provided financial aid, heavy weapons, and military personnel to better assist Assad in killing his own people.

Even as Assad used long-range rockets and modern fighter jets to demolish whole neighborhoods, he cynically portrayed his brutal campaign as a battle against Islamic extremists.

Bashar invited the world to choose him as the lesser of two evils, with some success. With the help of Iran and Hezbollah, he continued to deliberately transform a revolution that seeks liberation from a brutal regime into a sectarian conflict — provoking dangerous spillover violence in a region already wracked by religious tensions, especially with the Palestinian issue still unresolved.

At the beginning of the revolution, top figures of the Syrian regime clearly threatened to burn the country to the ground in order to stay in power.

More than two years later, it is clear they have made good on their promise: Over 100,000 lives have been lost, over 200,000 people (usually, the injured are 4 folds those who are killed) have been injured and many more are imprisoned, and almost a third of the Syrian population is displaced either inside or outside the country.

The number of Syrians who have sought shelter in Lebanon now constitutes a quarter of the Lebanese population. And even as Assad fulfills his promise, with the help of Iran and Hezbollah, the world simply watches.

(Compared to the total population of Lebanon, the number of displaced Syrians into Lebanon amount to all the British immigrating to the USA, or in the case of Jordan, all the Polish people fleeing to the USA)

It is inconceivable that Assad would accept the kind of political transition envisioned in the Geneva process, given this state of affairs. In fact, if the current situation is allowed to continue, there is every reason to believe that the tragedy in Syria will continue unabated.

The world — and the West in particular — has a great moral obligation to stop Assad’s hateful campaign. (Moral obligation my ass: the civil war has been going on for 3 years)

In the 21st century, no government should be allowed to use such horrible weapons against its own citizens. The recent, horrific chemical weapons attack is the direct result of the impunity that the Syrian regime is enjoying. Assad has proved that he is willing to slaughter Syrians by the thousands and destroy millennia-old cities to maintain his grip on power. He is a danger to the Syrian people — and to the entire globe.

Beyond the humanitarian case, the United States has a strategic interest in ending the conflict in Syria.

The continuation of the war is breeding terrorism and leading to the expansion of Iranian hegemony in the region. (Is that the main US strategic interest?)These results are contrary to U.S. strategic interests, and the idea that a continuation of the war is somehow in the interests of Washington is absurd.

The continuation of the war and this humanitarian tragedy is but an invitation for problems to fester and spread — not just in Syria, but in the Middle East and beyond.

(Lebanon is a NON State: Otherwise, Seniora should face court martial for inciting a foreign nation to bomb a neighboring State)

Note: Israeli dailies let out that former Lebanon PM Seniora is an Israeli agent since 1974

What’s going on in Syria? Any insider pieces of intelligence? Part two

That may have been the longest and most terrifying week for the Syrian president Bashar Assad.  External interventions could not scare the Syrian regime, but vast internal unrest is another different story to consider very seriously.

For example, since 2005, the French president Jacques Chirac had a priority and a fixation to dismantle the one-party rule in Syria, especially the Assad oligarchy that ruled Syria since 1971.

Chirac blamed Syria for the assassination of ex-prime Minister Rafic Hariri and did his best to condemn Syria via the International Court on Lebanon.

US President Bush Jr. also wanted this occurrence as Syria initially refused to support the unilateral US invasion of Iraq in 2003, until Bush discovered that he badly needs the cooperation of Syria with the open vast borders with Iraq.

France Sarkozy and Obama  are no longer interested in exercising any seriuos pressures on Syria: Syria is entirely off the hook from the International Court on Lebanon.

Obviously, Israel relied on the Assad family and did its best convincing rhetorics for that clan to remain in power:  The Israeli occupied Golan Heights were the most secure and safest place on earth since 1973.

Information on the two-week long uprising and demonstrations in several Syrian cities and the Capital Damascus are controversial and not covered in details.  There are intended blackout by most media channels, western, and Arab States for disseminating useful intelligent pieces.

A few cable news mention over 100 killed, particularly in the southern city of Daraa, on the borders with Jordan.  The Syrian media displayed arms stocked in the Daraa mosque and denunciation of violent infiltrated elements.

The Syrian dictatorial regime responded with promises of vast reforms from instant increase in wages, the release of  political prisoners, laws on forming political parties to be reviewed, and more freedom of expressions… The Syrian Baath party faction is to meet today for critical analysis of the situations and considering alternative reforms.

Bashar Assad is a young dictator and serious about development reforms, as all young dictators think.  For example, Qadhafi, Abdel Nasser, Abdallah Saleh of Yemen…were very promising figures of their period.

It would be tough for Bashar to reconsider giving away the oligarchic interests of the Assad extended family.

Most probably, the Syrian people want a moratorium on dictators, oligarchy, and absolute monarchies.  Sort of it is okay, a decade later, for these forms of governance to return to the front scene?

For the time being, most people are exhausted with decades of dictatorial regimes and want some fresh air to blowing away layers of technocrats that were trained to be amoral and unethical by serving the enduring power-to-be.

The steadfast and determined mass protests are the result of the population knowing full well the vengeful tribal mentality of their rulers:  The masses know that if they relent before the entire structure is gone and that any reprieve to the oligarchic system means the reorganization and launching of mass arrests, summarily executions, humiliation tactics, and an open climate of terror.

The Determination of the masses is the result of innate survival process:  Either they win or they are massacred.

Do you think that the Ben Ali and Mubarak would have learned the lesson of respecting their people desires and wants? In Yemen, the people are not relinquishing their marches since the uprising started a month ago:  They know the reactions of the kinds of Abdullah Salef if he is given a breathing space.  Anyone doubt that Qadhafi would not have wiped out a third of the Libyan population if the UN postponed indefinitely any resolution for imposing a “No fly zone”?

You have an excellent demonstration of what’s happening in Bahrain:  The King has arrested all the leaders of the uprising, is readying to hire one thousand Pakistani soldiers, cut diplomatic relations with Iran and Lebanon on the basis that Hezbollah denounced the strong arm tactics of this monarchy, and prohibited the Lebanese immigrants, legally working in Bahrain, from returning home and considering every Lebanese as enemy to their stupid monarchy, and on… Do not be surprised when you hear news of blatant atrocities and crimes against humanity are perpetrated openly in Bahrain.

In 1980, Hafez Assad encircled the city of Hama with his special troops, entered the city, and never ever left the city.

There were no serious coverage of what happened.  Every now and then, when the US is unhappy with the regime of Hafez, innuendos would circulate that Assad slaughtered 20,000 Syrians living in Hama.  It is an unbelievable number to take seriously:  Just disposing of the bodies of a number of that magnitude in a short time would overthrow any regime, even Hitler and Stalin.

In any case, many Sunni Moslems in Hama, expressing dislike for the Alawi regime, disappeared.  No international court or any indictment by the UN ever materialized.  Nobody know, even today, the number of casualties:  Not the exact number but the scale; is it in the dozen, hundreds, or thousands…?

On Friday of last week, mass upheavals were spreading in Syria; from the city of Daraa by the borders with Jordan, to Banyas, Tartous, Homs, and way to the north in the Kurdish region.  Last week, there were a couple of shy demonstrations localized in Damascus demanding the liberation of political prisoners.  Four demonstrators were killed in Daraa.

President Bashar Assad sent two official delegates to pay condolence to the bereaved families of the dead citizens.  As they finished their visit, the two delegates had three more casualties on hand.

The Syrian government blamed “infiltrators” disguised in internal security outfit to ordering live ammunition shooting on peaceful marchers.  The infiltrators also burned the headquarter of the one-party Baath regime and the court of justice in the city.  You have to admit that the “infiltrators” are awfully skilled:  The government security specialists have proven to be no match to infiltrators.

The President Bashar Assad had decreed last week the liberation of most prisoners, political and non political, those over 70 years and the terminally sick…Maybe it was just a promise?  As all promises that the people have been hearing for decades?

I guess Bashar forgot to mention that the political system needed to be reformed and that the Assad regime, father to son, since 1971, has to make rooms for democratic succession and away from a “one-party” rule.

Syria has grown to 20 million in population.  Amid the turmoil in the Middle-East, Syria of the Assad socialist regime managed to bring sort of stability and security; it maintained a steady currency and invested in decent infrastructure and schooling for all.  Invariably, oligarchic regimes ends up getting involved in widespread corruptions and considering the State Treasury as family holdings.

Bashar succeeded to his father in 2000.  Israel unilaterally retreated from south Lebanon in 2000, quickly and never turning back to facing the deadly blows of the Lebanese resistance forces.  Instead of announcing a timetable for the retreat of Syrian troops from Lebanon, the new Syrian President got immersed resolving side problems and affirming his power, until Hariri was assassinated in 2005 and the Syrian troops felt it wise to retreat from all Lebanon.

The Assad regime is based on the minority Alawi sect, a kind of Shia sect, and most of the sensitive positions in the army and internal security system are in the hands of the extended family members.  The Syria Baath party made alliance with a few political parties for the Parliament, but there is a deep sense that the structure of this regime is fundamentally an oligarchic system.

The Syrian regime masterfully kept diplomatic dialogue with the US  Administrations and reached many tacit agreements in cooperating with the US in Iraq, even though Syria is included in the “black list” as a “rogue State” not entirely supporting the US policies.

Syria maintained a strong alliance with Iran for three decades and currently extended firm alliance with Turkey.  The regimes of Mubarak of Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan kept the squeeze on Syria by orders from the USA for two decades.  Syria had close ties with Libya of Qadhafi and is still supporting Qadhafi with jet pilots, until the “No Fly Zone” was established.

Two days ago, Syria announced its support to the expeditionary Saudi forces in Bahrain on the premises that these forces were legitimate since they were demanded by the King of Bahrain!  In the meanwhile, Iran vehemently denounced these incursions into Bahrain and is against Qadhafi.  Thus, Syria flaunted Iran’s policies in the region twice in less than two days.  Syria is wooing the alliance of Egypt and Saudi Arabia in order to ward off the current mass Arab uprising everywhere.  Maybe Syria made a hasty move away from Iran before securing its internal stability with new political reforms.

It is obvious that no foreign alliances can withstand the new wrath of the people for everlasting regimes of dictators, one-party regimes, and absolute monarchies.

Lebanon youth have been demonstrating for a secular political structure.

The monarchy in Morocco is witnessing mass upheavals in 40 cities.

Time for outraged is not going to subside any time soon.




March 2023

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