You are here

US-NATO policy on Syria

Direct from Aleppo, Syria: The Ceasefire, Interventionist policy, and Aleppo news

[Article received from Aleppo, 9 March 2016, 19.20 Brisbane time]: This whole crisis, destruction, cleansing, uprooting people from their homes, poverty, the refugee problem, systematic destruction of infrastructure, raping women, beheading innocents, looting, erasing priceless heritage and historical and sacred buildings and architecture, creating all the zombie-like trash criminals that have invaded us from all over the world..... All that and a lot more, had been made in the name of gaining perhaps 3% more rights than the 80% of rights that Syrians already had. As result, Syrians have lost 80% of what they had before, and have not gained the 3% they were promised that foreign intervention would bring them. [Candobetter.net Editor: There has been some minor editing for clarity.]

Does Bashar al-Assad really have to go? Cartoonist Bruce Petty talks to Dr Jeremy Salt.

Video & transcript: Bruce Petty interviews Dr Jeremy Salt, Middle Eastern scholar. Bruce Petty is a highly regarded political satirist and cartoonist as well as an award-winning film maker.

"There always has to be a 'madman' in the Middle East," explains Jeremy Salt, when asked why we constantly hear that 'Bashar al-Assad has to go'? Of course Bashar al-Assad is not really mad. Jeremy explains how the west, in its long exploitation of the Middle East, has invented crises that it then pretends to help with, and these tend to feature a 'madman' whom the people have to be saved from. In reaction Middle Eastern governments tend to be defensive and authoritarian, in order to survive constant foreign interference. Even if Bashar went, the Syrian state would remain the same. Salt gives a fluent history of how the west has used the Middle East, and how western politicians expected to knock Syria over easily, but underestimated it. All they have done is weaken it and assorted armed and dangerous groups including ISIS have risen up through the cracks they have created. But many Syrians really like Bashar al-Assad and think he is their best chance for reform. (See the third part in this series, "Has the Syrian president killed more than ISIS and other questions," to hear about how al-Assad is actually legally elected and had brought in reforms prior to the current crisis.) Petty asks about beheading and the role of religion and Islam in today's crisis. Salt agrees that Islam has been taken over by conservatives and extremists, but precises that this is a political ideological take-over that has little to do with Islamic religious base.

Subscribe to RSS - US-NATO policy on Syria