Allegations of abandoning Syrians |
Arab News - 24 July, 2012
Author: Abdul Rahman Al-Rashed
Nobody would deny what is happening in Syria is extremely horrifying. Every day gunships, tanks and artilleries pound residential neighborhoods in many cities and the victims are mostly old men, women and children.
Observers, organizations and governments throughout the world are aware of these horrors. The massacres have continued for more than a year, yet the international community does nothing to stop it.
On the other hand, those at the center and fringe of the revolution are making a mistake when they provoke its supporters with allegations of abandoning Syrians.
Perhaps the revolution would not have advanced to its present level but for the diplomatic, moral and material support it received from the outside world.
Countries such as Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey and France have supported the revolution since its inception.
Turkey’s act of hosting the Free Syrian Army has undoubtedly made the opposition's endeavors easier. The National Council operates on Turkish territories as a political movement. Turkish borders have been used to smuggle weapons, people, fighters and media over the past year.
The Gulf countries have also extended behind-the-scenes resources and diplomatic support to the revolutionaries.
France is striving to unite the opposition, arranging political actions and the diplomatic confrontation of the regime.
Even the Americans, who have a clear interest in the fall of the Assad regime, provide intelligence to help fighters make effective ground moves.
It is true we do not see foreign warplanes roaring across Syrian skies like we saw in Libya and no NATO bombers strike and immobilize the regime’s forces. The present support is no doubt little, but that little is indispensable for the revolutionaries.
Outside world support has enabled the revolutionaries to move strategically and the media to operate and host opposition leaders.
Without the sympathy of the international community, the Syrian people would be silenced by the regime and face a situation similar to the people of Darfur under the Bashir regime in Sudan.
No one should think bringing down the Assad regime, which enjoys full Russian and Iranian support, would be an easy task.
In the past, human tragedies like this were settled with international interference and only after drawn-out debates in the lobbies of the United Nations and other peacekeeping organizations. It took no less than two years for NATO to interfere in Bosnia and unseat Slobodan Milosevic.
The world knew about the butchery in Sierra Leone, Cambodia, Liberia, Rwanda, and many other countries, yet no actions were taken to stop them until the last body was buried.
We are aware of evil regimes and rarely does the UN rescue the victims. I do not refer to the issue of the Palestinian people who have suffered injustice over the past 70 years. There is limited intervention in Syria, unlike Kuwait or Libya where the flow of oil contributed to international concern. The Syrian issue is complicated however, as it is part of a geo-political dispute between major world powers.
When asked why Russia used its veto power against halting the butchery in Syria, a Russian representative in the UN said, “The whole issue is targeting Iran.” In other words the ambassador looks at the Syrian uprising as a ruse to bring down Iran. Writers such as Fahmi Howaidi also repeat the same mistake. “The report of conspiracy against Syria is a fact no one can deny. No one can further deny the humbling of the Syrian regime has paved the way for conspiracy plots,” he added. Of course this is just idle talk.
Are the atrocities of Deraa part of the conspiracy? The truth is all acts of the Assad regime in the past were criminal. There are no conspirators in the Syrian revolution, but some countries that want to assist the revolutionaries may have their own interests.
The revolutionaries need to take the help they are offered — no matter how little it may be and speed up the end of the regime. Meanwhile, the role of the international community is to protect the integrity of the Syrian territories and the unity of its forces.