And here we go again: Building up a case for drone strikes, and for going back to doing business with Assad. I am not implying that the reports are false. On the contrary they are as true as those reports of Assad’s complicity in the chemical weapons attack and all the massacres perpetrated by his loyalist militias from the onset of this genocide to this very moment. But issuing an order for a drone attack is much easier for this administration than committing to a policy that can make a real difference on the ground. It creates the impression of doing something, while your main focus is to actually avoid entanglement. I am yet to hear a cogent argument showing how one can actually make a difference on the ground without being “entangled,” at least for a certain period of time, and for all the headaches that come with entanglement. Drone strikes against “certain rebels” while avoiding strikes against the Assad regime, even after they crossed all red lines, the one drawn by Obama and those delineated by international law, will only serve to make matters worse in Syria. Rebels are doing their best to combat extremists with no support from the U.S. But Assad has to go in order to really curtail spread of violence beyond borders of the country and the region.
And the world insists on using Syria as its new battleground. It seems like all “world leaders” are members of the same fucking terrorist organization, one that is far more deadly than a million Al-Qaeda or a Hezbollah. The moment we threatened one of them with removal (Assad), they all came to the rescue. A Fraternity of Genocidal Maniacs.
Whether it’s the massacres in Houla, Darya, Bayda, or the chemical weapons attack in Ghoutah, the evidence is overwhelming and the perpetrator known: the Assad regime and its militias. Yet, no one did anything, and world leaders keep speaking of a political solution, as though someone who commits such crimes can be induced to embrace politics, or have not gone beyond the pale. These crimes against humanity are enabled by the crimes perpetrated by world leaders against our sanity and decency. Knowing the truth makes little difference in a world intent on ignoring its responsibility towards it. So a genocide unfolds again, and people rush to bury their heads in the sand, again. Its timing was inconvenient, we are told. O Lord, when we will you grant us criminals who are more considerate? I am sure this is the essence of Obama’s nighttime prayers.
I have to apologize for not drawing a rosy picture in it or any of my recent writings, I prefer to describe reality and deal with it as it is in order to see what can be done to change it. For me, romantic notions don’t give me the necessary will or tools to do that. They might work for other people, but they don’t work for me. After all, I am not motivated by faith, but by a mixture of dutifulness and personal obsession, for better or worse.
As we approach the second anniversary of the Syrian Revolution, it’s important to remember a simple truth, if for no other reason than out of respect for all who have died or continue to suffer: Continue reading
Prepared for a briefing that took place in Washington on January 15, 2013.
MAP OF CONFLICT
The regime is continuing its policy of holding on to big cities and main roads while surrendering the surrounding countryside to rebels. However, it seems inevitable now that the regime might be forced to relinquish its control over the north and northeast soon, a process that could begin within the next 2 to 3 months. This move will include Aleppo City, and the provinces of Deir Ezzor, Raqqa and Hassakeh. Continue reading
The resignation of Syrian Foreign Ministry spokesman Jihad Makdissi on Monday is just one of a series of recent setbacks for the embattled regime of President Bashar al-Assad. The news follows a week of unprecedented military victories for rebel forces, including the shooting down of two regime aircraft in as many days, a pledge by NATO to deploy Patriot surface-to-air missiles along the Turkish-Syrian border, and a diplomatic breakthrough that could see European nations arming the opposition by March 2013. Continue reading
Quote in Businessweek:
Foreign fighters began trickling into Syria a few months after the uprising against Assad began in March 2011, according to Ammar Abdulhamid, a Syrian dissident who is a fellow at the Washington-based Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Most of the opposition is made up of Sunni Muslims while Assad belongs to the minority Alawite sect, an off-shoot of Shiite Islam. Not all the foreign fighters are extremist or al-Qaeda affiliates. Some are moderate Muslims or liberals, driven by romantic notions and a sense of Arab solidarity, Abdulhamid said. …
The overwhelming majority are considered “dead weight,” said Abdulhamid. Tensions between rebels and foreign fighters mean that “oftentimes, foreign fighters stay in separate camps with a few like-minded Syrian recruits who help them secure their basic needs from nearby villages.”