World
Dmitriy Sedov
July 28, 2012
© Photo: Public domain

The events in Libya once more speak out in favor of the old truth – a local mutiny fuelled from outside threatens to spread and become an all out revolt if not quelled timely in a tough way without any hesitation. For instance, many former Libya opposition activists look back and ask themselves about the outcome of the events: is it what we were striving for? The country is devastated, the first rate social security system is gone, the groups that came to power are plunged in internal squabbles, no prospect is sight…

By and large the same thing is taking place in Syria, the rebellion is on the rise instigated by permanent subversive activities against the Syrian government. Being confused and lost more and more people take side of the opposition, especially the young ones. As in Libya we see the pictures of capturedcombat weapons systems operated by students, the number of army defectors is growing (or the people who give themselves out as defectors in front of TV cameras – a tried and true method of waging an information war), many fall prey to hostile media and render support to the armed groupings. Step by step more and more peopleget involved into the rebellion.

Still there is a specific feature of the Syrian situation. There is no powerful anti-dictator drive that gave impetus to many of those who supported the opposition efforts in Libya. In the case of Muammar Gaddafi forty years in power was too much for the psychological tolerance of the most active part of population, it was a factor fuelling the anti-government fight.

The Assad clan led Baath party in Syria is flexible enough to meet the new challenges of time. The ongoing political reform appears to open the way for political dialogue. It has not happened due to the efforts of those who oppose peaceful outcome. They see the close ties with Iran as a great ”vice” of the ruling regime, added by the factor the ruling Alawites are seen as a branch of Shia denomination of Islam.

Those who influence the scenario development from abroad are right, till the Alawits rulethe country it’ll remain an Iranian ally. The growing influence of the Shias in the region is an indisputable fact Saudi Arabia is mostly concerned about: the Shiites make up a tangible part (though a minority) of its population and they launch a struggle for their rights, something threatening the foundations of the ruling regime. In November 2011 four men were killed in the Saudi governorate Qatif , an urban area located in Eastern Province. A formal statement said the killed were armed and “acted upon orders given from abroad”. One should think they were Iranian agents. At the beginning of January the Saudi authorities named twenty three men who were suspected of inciting disorder in Qatif, illegal arms trafficking and opening fire against military and civilians. In the March and July Qatif, mainly populated by Shiites, became again an epicenter of protests. The Shiites demanded the release of political prisoners, reforms and cessation of discrimination. The protests were resolutely put down. There were human casualties, 400 men were put under arrest. 70 of them are still behind bars including a well known human rights activist Fadelal-Munasif. It’s even more tense in Bahrain and Qatar where the Shiites are a majority. In the last spring the Shiites protests in Bahrain were quelled by the Saudi Arabia and Qatar armed forces.

The decisive feature of the staged rebellion is the fact that the Persian Gulf Sunni regimesact as the major sponsors of the Syrian events. These regimes are not influenced by Western democratic ideology, they don’t pull the strings of puppets acting under the guise of fight for democracy. They rely on Muslim terrorists hired in different countries of the world. No surprise, there are so many Al Qaeda militants in the ranks of mercenaries, the organization is an vanguard of extremism of the Sunni Islam. Today international terrorists from all corners of the worldfightthe legally elected President and acting government of Syria. The major part of them are hired by Saudi emissaries in Tunisia. Algiers, Yemen, the number of Iraqis and Afghans is also on the rise. It’s a deterring factor in the process of moral degradation of the pro-Presidential majority of the Syrian population. Foreign hirelings don’t and cannot have a prevailing mass support inside the country. The traditionally hostile Sunny dominated areas like Homs and Hama and some rural areas to greater extent vulnerable to information assault of the opposition continue to be the pillars of the opposition efforts in Syria. That’s why the combat actions between government forces and rebels resemble fire fight. The role of the West is quite different in comparison with Libya. This time the West ceded the initiative to Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar hoping their efforts would lead to Assad’s overthrow and establishment of a pro-Western regime in Damascus.

Today the West is shaping a diplomatic and information background for toppling the Syrian leadership, but it’s not inclined to be part of armed aggression in case the situation creep would lead to this stage. The significance of the mentioned diplomatic and information warfare effort shouldn’t be diminished. Washington, London and Paris have skillfully used the results of their allies terrorist activities in Syria to their advantage and pushed the situation to the point of political turning point. They have created the atmosphere of  “the last chance” for Assad in the United Nations. Missing the chance  opens the way to the further aggravation of situation. The technical prolongation of the UN observers’ mission is limited by thirty days only, not three months likeit had been envisaged before. After the Syrian top military leaders were physically eliminated as a result of terror act the country’s leadership is actually faced with an ultimatum: it has one month to normalize the situation  (even less now). Then preparatory actions for direct intervention will be launched. They in Damascus under stand well what is implied.

That’s why the Syrian air force planes and military helicopters appeared in the sky over Aleppo. They are conducting “mopping up” operations to clean one of the country’s biggest cities of rebels. The general assault is under way, all means will be used except chemical weapons. One should expect the Western media to present dire pictures of Aleppo cleansing while highlighting the events. But at present it has lost any significance for Syrian leadership. It faces the last ditchdecisive battle.The military mission is clear – the rebellious gangs should run to the Turkey’s border. The following “putting out the fire” should have the terrorists squeezed out of the country as a result. Thenext three weeks the world is going to see a decisive battle between the terrorist international and the Syrian government forces. Perhaps one day the historians will call “the battle for Syria”.

Perhaps. It all depends onw howins and if Syria stays.
 

The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.
Fight for Aleppo

The events in Libya once more speak out in favor of the old truth – a local mutiny fuelled from outside threatens to spread and become an all out revolt if not quelled timely in a tough way without any hesitation. For instance, many former Libya opposition activists look back and ask themselves about the outcome of the events: is it what we were striving for? The country is devastated, the first rate social security system is gone, the groups that came to power are plunged in internal squabbles, no prospect is sight…

By and large the same thing is taking place in Syria, the rebellion is on the rise instigated by permanent subversive activities against the Syrian government. Being confused and lost more and more people take side of the opposition, especially the young ones. As in Libya we see the pictures of capturedcombat weapons systems operated by students, the number of army defectors is growing (or the people who give themselves out as defectors in front of TV cameras – a tried and true method of waging an information war), many fall prey to hostile media and render support to the armed groupings. Step by step more and more peopleget involved into the rebellion.

Still there is a specific feature of the Syrian situation. There is no powerful anti-dictator drive that gave impetus to many of those who supported the opposition efforts in Libya. In the case of Muammar Gaddafi forty years in power was too much for the psychological tolerance of the most active part of population, it was a factor fuelling the anti-government fight.

The Assad clan led Baath party in Syria is flexible enough to meet the new challenges of time. The ongoing political reform appears to open the way for political dialogue. It has not happened due to the efforts of those who oppose peaceful outcome. They see the close ties with Iran as a great ”vice” of the ruling regime, added by the factor the ruling Alawites are seen as a branch of Shia denomination of Islam.

Those who influence the scenario development from abroad are right, till the Alawits rulethe country it’ll remain an Iranian ally. The growing influence of the Shias in the region is an indisputable fact Saudi Arabia is mostly concerned about: the Shiites make up a tangible part (though a minority) of its population and they launch a struggle for their rights, something threatening the foundations of the ruling regime. In November 2011 four men were killed in the Saudi governorate Qatif , an urban area located in Eastern Province. A formal statement said the killed were armed and “acted upon orders given from abroad”. One should think they were Iranian agents. At the beginning of January the Saudi authorities named twenty three men who were suspected of inciting disorder in Qatif, illegal arms trafficking and opening fire against military and civilians. In the March and July Qatif, mainly populated by Shiites, became again an epicenter of protests. The Shiites demanded the release of political prisoners, reforms and cessation of discrimination. The protests were resolutely put down. There were human casualties, 400 men were put under arrest. 70 of them are still behind bars including a well known human rights activist Fadelal-Munasif. It’s even more tense in Bahrain and Qatar where the Shiites are a majority. In the last spring the Shiites protests in Bahrain were quelled by the Saudi Arabia and Qatar armed forces.

The decisive feature of the staged rebellion is the fact that the Persian Gulf Sunni regimesact as the major sponsors of the Syrian events. These regimes are not influenced by Western democratic ideology, they don’t pull the strings of puppets acting under the guise of fight for democracy. They rely on Muslim terrorists hired in different countries of the world. No surprise, there are so many Al Qaeda militants in the ranks of mercenaries, the organization is an vanguard of extremism of the Sunni Islam. Today international terrorists from all corners of the worldfightthe legally elected President and acting government of Syria. The major part of them are hired by Saudi emissaries in Tunisia. Algiers, Yemen, the number of Iraqis and Afghans is also on the rise. It’s a deterring factor in the process of moral degradation of the pro-Presidential majority of the Syrian population. Foreign hirelings don’t and cannot have a prevailing mass support inside the country. The traditionally hostile Sunny dominated areas like Homs and Hama and some rural areas to greater extent vulnerable to information assault of the opposition continue to be the pillars of the opposition efforts in Syria. That’s why the combat actions between government forces and rebels resemble fire fight. The role of the West is quite different in comparison with Libya. This time the West ceded the initiative to Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar hoping their efforts would lead to Assad’s overthrow and establishment of a pro-Western regime in Damascus.

Today the West is shaping a diplomatic and information background for toppling the Syrian leadership, but it’s not inclined to be part of armed aggression in case the situation creep would lead to this stage. The significance of the mentioned diplomatic and information warfare effort shouldn’t be diminished. Washington, London and Paris have skillfully used the results of their allies terrorist activities in Syria to their advantage and pushed the situation to the point of political turning point. They have created the atmosphere of  “the last chance” for Assad in the United Nations. Missing the chance  opens the way to the further aggravation of situation. The technical prolongation of the UN observers’ mission is limited by thirty days only, not three months likeit had been envisaged before. After the Syrian top military leaders were physically eliminated as a result of terror act the country’s leadership is actually faced with an ultimatum: it has one month to normalize the situation  (even less now). Then preparatory actions for direct intervention will be launched. They in Damascus under stand well what is implied.

That’s why the Syrian air force planes and military helicopters appeared in the sky over Aleppo. They are conducting “mopping up” operations to clean one of the country’s biggest cities of rebels. The general assault is under way, all means will be used except chemical weapons. One should expect the Western media to present dire pictures of Aleppo cleansing while highlighting the events. But at present it has lost any significance for Syrian leadership. It faces the last ditchdecisive battle.The military mission is clear – the rebellious gangs should run to the Turkey’s border. The following “putting out the fire” should have the terrorists squeezed out of the country as a result. Thenext three weeks the world is going to see a decisive battle between the terrorist international and the Syrian government forces. Perhaps one day the historians will call “the battle for Syria”.

Perhaps. It all depends onw howins and if Syria stays.