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Sunday, July 03, 2011

Obama trying to save Assad regime

As an American citizen, I am ashamed of the President of the United States. Barack Hussein Obama is not only refusing to help the Syrian uprising, he has also given Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad a way out.
The US is pushing the Syrian opposition to maintain dialogue with Bashar al-Assad's regime as details emerge of a controversial "roadmap" for reforms that would leave him in power for now despite demands for his overthrow during the country's bloody three-month uprising.

Syrian opposition sources say US state department officials have been discreetly encouraging discussion of the unpublished draft document, which is currently in circulation. But Washington flatly denies backing it, and organisers of an unprecedented opposition conference held on Monday in Damascus say it was not discussed there.

Assad would oversee what the roadmap calls "a secure and peaceful transition to civil democracy". It calls for tighter control over the security forces, the disbanding of "shabiha" gangs accused of atrocities, the legal right to peaceful demonstrations, extensive media freedoms, and the appointment of a transitional assembly.

The carefully phrased 3,000-word document demands a "clear and frank apology" and accountability for organisations and individuals who "failed to accommodate legitimate protests", and compensation for the families of victims. The opposition says 1,400 people have been killed since mid-March. The government says 500 members of the security forces have died.

It calls for the ruling Ba'ath party to be subject to a new law on political parties – though the party would still provide 30 of 100 members for a proposed transitional national assembly. Seventy others would be appointed by the president in consultation with opposition nominees.

Several of the proposed measures have already been mentioned in public by Assad, fuelling speculation that he is at least partially following through on some of the document's recommendations.

The roadmap is signed by Louay Hussein and Maan Abdelsalam, leading secular intellectuals in a group called the National Action Committee. Hussein met the vice-president, Farouk al-Sharaa, before Assad's most recent speech, diplomats said. On Monday they were involved in the Damascus conference, which had official permission, was attended by 150 people – and was publicly welcomed by the US.
Here's the English language version of the program - more below the fold.

A Road Map for Syria (in English)

Michael Rubin comments:
There could be no worse signal the Obama administration could send to the Syrian people and broader Arab population elsewhere than to throw a lifeline to a disgraced dictator who has lost all legitimacy at home and abroad. Nor is maintaining Assad in power in U.S. national interests: Assad cannot be trusted; he is a serial violator of agreements. He appears personally involved in the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Premier Rafik Hariri, has embraced and sponsored numerous terrorist groups which target civilians and seek to undermine Middle East peace; transformed Syria into a highway for terrorists targeting Iraqis and Americans working to rebuild that shattered country; and has become an extension of Iranian interests along the Mediterranean. It is time the man occupying the Oval Office begin to ground American policy in U.S. national interests, not in the moral compromises which his top advisers might believe sophisticated but which undercut American interests among Syrians and others struggling to be free.

So why is Obama backing Assad? What if Assad were replaced by someone who was more interested in rebuilding the Syrian economy than in 'recovering' the Golan Heights? (Yes, I am answering a question with a question).

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At 3:23 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But Obama needs Assad to be in power so he can dismember Israel by forcing her to give the Golan Heights away.


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