Friday, May 10, 2013
Syria - Is Russia Making Fools of the West Once More?
Tim Marshall, the Sky News chief correspondent on the ground in Syria, gave a rather stark live report today from the line separating rebels and al-Assad troops in central Syria. The topic - peace in Syria. His opinion - we don't know where the Syrian peace conference will be held, who will be there or what the agenda will be. His read in the situation is that we have heard positive commentary from the US, the UK and Europe about Russia's agreenent to participate in the conference, but until Russian president Vladimir Putin actually faces a TV camera and says that Bashar al-Assad has no role to play in Syria's future, there can be no breakthrough. Marshall said that when that happens, peace will be possible...and not before. Meanwhile, earlier today we learned that a Russian shipment of missiles to al-Assad is being completed "under a signed contract." ~~~~~ Dear readers, Oscar Wilde once said that "marriage is the triumph of hope over experience." Wilde was not a political expert, but that remark is spot on point in Syria. The West, naive even after almost a century of failed attempts at trying to negotiate with Russia in good faith, nevertheless continues. Russia is not the key to peace in Syria - Russia is the key to endless stalemate and civil war. The West and US President Obama have to understand this truth in real politik terms. Only when the Syria Free Army is armed and supported by the US and Europe in a way that makes it possible for the rebels to defeat al-Assad on the ground will Russia change its position. Until then, the civil war will achieve only a pushing back and forth of front lines, with more and more of the Syrian people becoming refugees in their own country. Is this really the best that Mr.Obama and the West can do?