Ausama Monajed

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Conventional wisdom suggests that Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, like Moammar Gaddafi in Libya, will weather the Arab Spring by brutality alone. But the Assad regime’s days are numbered.

Assad’s latest speech, on June 20, and his admission that the government may no longer control some cities suggest that even he foresees his eventual departure. The Syrian regime is a classic “police state” — its most essential and significant assets are its security forces. But these forces are more limited than is widely known: They are based on certain Alawite clans, a minority that comprises about 10 percent of the population.

The regime is also hard-pressed to expand its forces beyond its own usual circles to keep up with the number of protesters.…  Seguir leyendo »