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The crisis in Damascus

20 July 2012 06:30 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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The regime in Damascus has been dealt a major blow. The suicide blast on Wednesday that targeted the core of the Syrian regime and killed the top security brass, including several policy-makers, has certainly weakened President Bashar Al Assad.

That is squarely evident from the silence that has fallen on the regime and the president who, since then, not been seen or heard. It has been the biggest security breach and questions are being asked, the most crucial being: what happens next?

Though there have been statements from Damascus vowing to crush the opposition, which it believes is foreignfunded and loaded with terrorist elements, that is not going to address the issue in totality. The solution lies with Assad who has been unrelenting in his approach, and has failed to comprehend the consequences the 16-month uprising will have on the country. Moreover, the deadly clashes that are being r e p o r t e d from the capital in which indiscriminate force is being used by either parties is more than enough to unnerve hopes for a thaw. The use of heavy artillery and helicopters to crush dissent is inside an urban metropolis will only serve to escalate the violence. The conflict is said to have claimed more than 60 lives in Damascus on Wednesday and the situation is getting out of hand ,chaotic. An aspect that needs to be analysed at this point of time is how the plotters succeeded in planting the bomb inside a high security zone, and that too hours before the meeting. This also hints at defections and dissent at the highest order, and there may be elements who may have started looking beyond Assad. The question invariably, especially after the blast that killed the defence minister and the security chief, is not one of what ‘if’ the regime falls, but one of what if the civil strife prolongs indefinitely. Syrians are certainly in a fix, as nothing seems to be working either on the political or diplomatic front.

The uprising that has claimed more than 15,000 lives so far and is now being seen as a war in itself against the people of Syria. This is why voices are being raised to streamline an intervention, and the United States and the European Union are at the vanguard to ensure that there’s a smooth and quick democratics transition in Damascus. This would not have been in such a mess had Assad foreseen implementation of the Six-Point Peace plan — enabling a smooth transition of power to a broad-based government. The initiative is still not lost and could save the day if the regime gives the nod.
(Khaleej Times)
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