The future of democracy in Syria is the subject of many concerns: people are worried about the treatment of minorities and women, possible acts of revenge, and the likelihood of transitional justice. Some ask about universal human rights. Others exaggerate fears of religious tyranny.
But ultimately all these anxieties – intentionally or unintentionally – only serve the interests of the rapists and child killers of Bashar al-Assad's regime.
We believe the position to take on Assad and his cabal is essentially a moral one. It is no longer a matter of political debate. Syrians must put their case to the court of global public opinion in the following direct manner: Assad, are you prepared to accept thousands of documented crimes, the torture of children and the rape of women by the state apparatus that should protect them?… Seguir leyendo »
When President Bashar al-Assad came to power all the international, regional and national communities were willing to give him a chance to start a process of gradual political reform. But 11 years on, and five months since the start of Syria's youthful, peaceful, nationalist popular uprising, Assad's regime remains unreformed.
The regime's promised programme of "reforms" – including repealing the state of emergency, licensing public demonstrations, the formation of political parties and the regulation of elections – has proven to be simply cosmetic.
The Syrian people, of all political persuasions, believe that the crimes committed by the regime's forces – which they continue to perpetrate in Dara'a, Doma, Homs, Rastan, Banyas, Baydah, al-Marqab, Jisr al-Shaghur, Hama, Bukamal and Dir al-Zur – have not met an appropriate reaction from the international community.… Seguir leyendo »
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal in January, Syria's president, Bashar al-Assad, said that his main objective was to address his people's "closed-mindedness". He made it clear that this alone impeded reform, and it might be another generation before Syria is ready for real change.
Dictators (including Assad's father, Hafez) have long presented themselves as suppressors of extremism in the region generally, and Syria in particular. They said democracy would usher in fundamentalists inherently opposed to modernity, civil dialogue, international community legitimacy and civilised human political and economic relations.
Perhaps because of this fear, the whole world was silent when Syria was passed from father to son; there were even some approving statements about the new "young and modern" president.… Seguir leyendo »