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December 18, 2006

Comments

howie

Ammar-

I am likely one of the least of the Assad fans on this channel. However, what really can be done, given the revolution is not coming tomorrow?

Can the world just ignore these guys or should talks begin, but with strong pressues for reform, which could then be rewarded once or rather IF results are seen?

Ammar

I understand the logic beyond wanting to talks to the Assads, all I am saying is that it's not going to go anywhere: the Assads won’t flip, for reasons that I have explained on so occasions before: starting from their internal difference as a ruling family, their minoritarian background, their corruption, their ineptness, their growing dependence on Iran and Hezbollah, etc.

So, what can be done, you might ask? The only thing that can be done, I guess, when you are dealing with a cancerous cell (or a hemorrhoidal growth): isolate then remove. The World should do the isolation, the opposition should take care of the removal. No, this will not be immediate or easy, and the Assads will continue to try to muscle their way out of isolation, as they are doing at this stage. It's only natural, after all, it’s their very survival, personal both in the dynastic and the physical personal sense, that is at stake here. But allowing the Assads to have their way, treating them as a legitimate presence in our midst, will make many situations in the region fester, and I have argued why before. Anyway, this is the argument of so many of us in the opposition, made on the basis of direct assessment of the situation. But different states will have to choose the position most suitable to their particular set of priorities and interests, and on the basis of their own particular experiences of the Assads. That much is clear.

One good thing that the Assads have had going for them for a while, as one US official once told me at the time, was that, no matter what they did, they remained too small a nuisance in the overall scheme of things to warrant any serious response by this administration. But, ever since the HISH Alliance was formed, and ever since they began threatening to topple down the Siniora government and the prospects of a manufactured civil war in Lebanon began to loom, and ever since this partisan game began to heat up again, that official began signing a much different tune. While the Democrats are busy playing the usual partisan politics in the region, I sense that the pendulum is swinging against the Assads in this administration, contrary to what many people might believe.

howie

Ammar-

Yes you have explained it, but sometimes I am as thick as elephant hemmoriods...and Alex always gets mad at me when I say I think the Assads are unsalvagable reprobate.

Ammar

Elephants' Hemorrhoids, now there's a scary thought. I actually did not mean you specifically when I said I explained this before, it was just a general reminder for those just now getting familiar with the blog. I do seem to be attracting a new audience, and I really need to make some of my often repeated stands on issues more accessible. I have to add a few more links to the site I guess, when I have the time.

Don Cox

It is hard to see the point in talking to them. We know already what they want - complete control in Lebanon and a free hand to assassinate whoever they please. What is there to discuss? And could anyone believe a word they uttered anyway?

howie

Ammar-

"I actually did not mean you specifically when I said I explained this before, it was just a general"

Yes...I know...but even I need reminding because I am one of those folks that forever believes..."hey, maybe this time around".

I have never learned my lesson and it has cost me dearly many times.

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