The need for caution on Syria

This development is sequel to the work of the United Nations inspection team in Syria to ascertain the use of chemical weapons by government forces – an exercise perceived by analysts to have been arranged by western powers to justify military action against Al-Assad-led government.
The UN Security Council has been in limbo since the uprising against Assad regime began in 2011. The bloody conflict in Syria rumbles on with attacks by both sides. To date about 100,000 people have been killed and more than two million displaced as a result of the crisis. The past few days have witnessed an increased number of women and children crossing the Syrian border to flee from the war-torn country.
The resolve by the West to exonerate rebel groups and find government forces culpable for the use of chemical weapons even before the inspection team submits a report is not a fair judgment. Such would be a case of finding Al-Assad regime guilty before trial. It equally sounds unreasonable to assume that government in any country would use deadly weapons against its own citizens. The media propaganda by the West against Syria is only but a conspiracy to justify military intervention in that country. The allegation over the government’s use of chemical weapons in Syria could as well be as deceptive as the false claims over the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq for which America led other nations to wage war against Saddam Hussein’s regime. The same deceptive claims were advanced to convince China that the war against Libya was on humanitarian ground, when actually it was a grand design to make a regime change. Ever since the war against Iraq and Libya ended in the killing of their respective leaders and thousands of people, the two countries have not known peace. The agitation by western powers to declare war against Syria without any UN-backed resolution represents the desire of these countries to have a repeat of the colossal destruction of lives and property experienced in the past wars.
While the British Parliament has rejected Prime Minister David Cameron’s plans of engaging Al-Assad in war, President Barrack Obama of the US is yet to decide his country’s line of action. Indeed, one of the elements that has become clearer than ever is President Obama’s apparent reluctance to plunge into an embroilment that is likely to be hard to get out of.
Non-violent negotiations could have brought peace to Syria. However, the refusal by the West to encourage rebel forces to agree to negotiations is enough evidence that America and its allies are against the use of diplomatic measures to end the Syrian conflict. Over time, instigation from western powers has made the rebels bolder and stronger in their violent confrontation with government forces. But the strategic challenge faced by these war-thirsty nations is the reality that the opposition elements they have been trying to prop up have not proven cohesive, credible or effective on the ground. Instead, the running has largely been made by Islamist factions – many of them allegedly linked to al-Qaeda.
More worrisome is the fact that any attack on Syria backed by Britain, France or the US will anger Russia and China, both of which have stepped up warnings against military intervention in Syria, with Moscow saying any such actions would have “catastrophic consequences” for the region.
Countries that want to intervene militarily in Syria should know that neither war against Syria nor the killing of Assad or the overthrow of his regime will resolve the crisis in that country, just as military interventions in Iraq and Libya failed to do so. We therefore strongly reject the proposed military action against Syria. Yet, something has to be done to stop the war in Syria in order to bring peace to the country. The United Nations must insist on the use of international diplomacy and negotiations between the rebels and government to resolve the crisis.


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