by Zafar Bangash (Editorials, Crescent International Vol. 44, No. 11, Rabi' al-Awwal, 1437)
Have the warmongers realized that their plot to overthrow Bashar al Asad by military means is untenable especially in the wake of Russia’s bombing campaign? A series of meetings on Syria’s future give rise to some hope for peace.
Developments in recent weeks have kindled hopes, however faint, that the long nightmare of the Syrian people may be nearing its end. There are unmistakable signs that the Americans — the principal instigators of the mayhem in Syria at the behest of their Zionist agitators — have seen the futility of their adventure and have perhaps concluded that a different approach is needed. This is evident from the series of meetings on Syria that culminated in the adoption on December 18 of a unanimous resolution at the Security Council (No: 2254).
The salient features of the resolution are: 1) ceasefire in Syria; 2) peace talks between the government of President Bashar al-Asad and the opposition; 3) establishment of a transitional government to begin this month; and 4) elections in 18 months that would include all political groups. The resolution says a “credible, inclusive and non-sectarian” government should be established in Syria within six months and UN-supervised “free and fair elections” should be held within 18 months.
The Security Council resolution is significant for both what it says and what it omits. It stresses that the transition process should be Syrian-led and Syrian-owned. The resolution is clear: only the “Syrian people will decide the future of Syria.” This is quite a change in the attitude of Western warmongers that have hitherto been repeating the mantra that “al-Asad must go.” Although President Barack Obama again parroted this line the day the resolution was passed, events have superseded him. Speaking during the Security Council meeting, US Secretary of State John Kerry had to eat crow when he admitted the resolution puts the future of Syria in the hands of its people. “For this to work, the process has to be led and shaped and decided by the men and women of Syria,” he said.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also rubbed it in when he said the resolution “is a clear response to attempts to impose a solution from the outside on Syrians on any issues, including those regarding its president, Bashar al-Asad.” It must have been painful for the Americans and their regional puppets — Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar, Jordan and the illegitimate Zionist entity — to admit that their plot for regime change through terrorism has failed. Lavrov alluded to this when he praised the text’s potential for creating a united front against terrorism. “Today’s unanimous vote in the council should pave the way for the formation of a broad front against terrorism on the basis of the UN Charter,” he said.
Unlike America’s European allies — France, Germany, Britain et al. — that still cling to the notion that al-Asad must go even though they had just voted for Resolution 2254, which stipulates the process should be Syrian-led and owned, China has adopted a positive attitude. On December 21, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi announced Beijing will invite representatives of the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Asad and opposition figures to the Chinese capital in an effort to help resolve the nearly five-year-long crisis. This, Wang said, was part of China’s efforts to play a constructive role in promoting a political resolution to the crisis. He said the two most important issues are launching political negotiations among Syrian parties and implementing a UN-monitored ceasefire. “Without peace talks, the ceasefire cannot be sustained. Without a ceasefire, peace talks cannot continue to produce results,” he said.
Arriving at the Security Council resolution has been a long and painful process. Much innocent blood has been spilled that the warmongers have blamed on Bashar al-Asad totally ignoring the head-chopping organ-eating monsters the West and its regional puppets have unleashed on the Syrian people. The Syrian army has suffered more than 60,000 of the estimated 200,000 deaths in the course of war. A similar number of terrorist mercenaries have also been killed. And not all civilian deaths can be attributed to the Syrian army. The foreign mercenaries that have flooded into Syria are responsible for far more civilian deaths.
Al-Asad has survived because the Syrian military and political establishment did not collapse. Further, his friends and allies led by Iran and Hizbullah, more recently joined by Russia, have refused to allow another imperialist-Zionist plot to succeed. Early on in the war, both China and Russia blocked Western attempts to impose, through the UN, a no-fly zone on Syria à la Libya, which resulted in the destruction of the North African country and the public lynching of Muammar Qaddafi in October 2011.
There have been a series of conferences on Syria: Geneva I (June 30, 2012); Geneva II (January 19, 2014); Vienna (November 14, 2015); and finally New York (December 18, 2015) culminating in the UN resolution. Preceding the December 18 meeting in New York, there was also a gathering of Syrian opposition groups in Riyadh on December 9–10 where a lot of typical Arabian hot air was expended. The most nonsensical statement was made by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir who said the Syrians wanted a system that respected all people irrespective of their religion, ethnicity, or political views. As one perceptive observer noted, were he to say that about his own country, he would have a quick date with the executioner’s sword!
The balance, however, was tipped by Russia’s decision to get involved directly in bombing the terrorists in Syria. This caused panic in Western and Arabian capitals. Their game plan was unravelling. The terrorists were being hit hard and seriously degraded. The Russians also exposed the criminal syndicate involved in smuggling Syrian oil. Turkey, the Kurdistan Provisional Government in Northern Iraq, and Israel are all involved in facilitating the transportation of oil on behalf of the terrorists.
Having failed militarily in overthrowing al-Asad’s government and their smuggling conspiracy exposed, the West and its regional puppets sued for peace. It would, however, be wrong to assume that peace is at hand. Much could go wrong but for now there is a faint glimmer of hope that there may be, just may be, a chance for peace.