Home Page - Gulf in the Media
HomePoliticsEconomy                               Set Gulfinthemedia.com as home page
Opinions
"Postings of opinions published in the Gulf and international newspapers
 Print  Send This Page
Save Listen to this Article
Retreat, Victory and Suicide   

Al Hayat - 28 February, 2012
Author: Ghassan Charbel

Observers sense that Syria is headed for more calamities. The regime is no longer able to retreat in the wake of the damage done to its image, the ruling party, the army, the security services and its economy. Nor is the opposition able to retreat with thousands of victims having perished, and with many cities and villages devastated. Both sides consider retreat to be suicide. The opposition can offer more sacrifices, and the regime more cruelties. Perhaps Syria itself will collapse before either party admits its defeat. This would mean Syria may be drawn into a protracted civil war which will inevitably be a regional civil war.

It is clear that change in Syria, if it happens, will be more significant than the overthrow of the regime of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad. It will be a momentous change at the regional level. It will be a change that affects the size of the Iranian role, the Russian role and the balance of power in the Arab world. It will also impact the Arab-Israeli conflict, the Sunni-Shiite rift, and the freedom of movement for Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. The change will also leave its mark on the fragile situation in Iraq, and this is perhaps why the conflict in Syria has turned into the forerunner of a major confrontation.

There are those who believe that the current situation in Syria is the result of a series of mistakes or lost opportunities that can be summed up as follows:

- The Damascus spring at the beginning of the last decade was a message demanding President Bashar al-Assad to rein in oppression and interference by the ruling party and the security services in people’s lives. Back then, the President had the popularity that allowed him to make breakthroughs. However, the web made of the security services and the ruling party rushed to warn against the danger of the return of Islamists, and squandered an opportunity wherein the opposition was not demanding more than reforms under the roof of stability and the regime.

- On the eve of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, Damascus and Tehran agreed to work together to thwart the invasion by all means. Thus, Syria opened its borders to the ‘Mujahideen’ wishing to cross to Iraq to fight the Americans. Now, Syria is suffering the repercussions of that role.

- The Syrian authorities did not learn the lesson from the deterioration that afflicted Sunni-Shiite relations, as a result of the assassination of Prime Minister Rafik Hariri and the execution of Saddam Hussein, and the manner and timing of the execution.

- Following the assassination of Hariri and the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon, and following the war of July 2006, it seemed that the balance in the Iranian-Syrian relations was tipped in favor of Tehran, giving pundits the impression that Syria had become hostage to Iranian decisions. This impression was then further reinforced with the return of Nuri al-Maliki to office, and the ouster of Saad Hariri from his office as prime minister.

- The Syrian regime came to believe for some time that the Syrian-Qatari-Turkish triangle can replace the Syrian-Saudi-Egyptian triangle that President Hafez al-Assad was keen not to undercut, despite differences and disagreements.

- The Syrian authorities dealt with the reengagement of Syria pursued by Arab and international sides, with Saudi, Qatari, Turkish and French efforts, as though it were an acknowledgement of its role and its choices. It therefore refused to absorb the fact that this reengagement practically required Syria to at least not completely identify with Iranian policies in the region.

- The Syrian authorities spent most of their energies on foreign battles, believing that the policy of resistance offers them immunity against any unrest. The regime in Syria did not pay attention to the fact that the fruits of economic openness had not spread beyond some of Damascus and Aleppo, and into the countryside which only grew poorer, and that therefore, the role of the ruling party had increasingly waned in the regions that once constituted its popular base. Nor did the regime pay heed to a new generation that the information revolution equipped with abilities to communicate and criticize, and demand participation or change.

The regime could have taken advantage of the incidents in Daraa to drop the eighth article of the Constitution, and form a government of national unity headed by a trusted figure from outside the ruling party. But it is now too late for that opportunity.

The inability to retreat portends further calamities. There are some who fear that Syria itself will collapse before any of the two parties is defeated. Indeed, the dream of a knockout victory may be nothing but a large stride on the path of destruction and suicide.
 
Kuwait's humanitarian identity
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-08-28
Author : Labeed Abdal
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) lauded the outstanding role of HH the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al- Jaber Al-Sabah in improving the organization’s programs associated with urgent humanitarian crisis....
Thoughtful strategy must to end IS
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-08-28
Author :
The Islamic State (IS) has been wounded. While the video of the execution of reporter James Foley displayed the group's depravity, its timing also suggests that recent counterattacks are having...
An open letter to Iraq's PM-designate Abadi
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Mohammed Fahad Al-Harthi
Firstly, we congratulate you on your new mission and pray to God to help you take on difficult responsibilities in this critical phase in history. The legacy of your predecessor,...
James Foley's death pushes Syria into the shadows
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Diana Mukkaled
Many Arab and Islamic voices condemned the barbaric murder of American journalist James Foley at the hands of the murderers known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). However,...
ISIS wants a five-star ticket to publicity. It gets it.
Source : Al Arabiya TV  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Chris Doyle
Surf around the web and there is no shortage of charming decapitation videos. But you may or may not be surprised to learn that many of them have nothing to...
Terrorism combating efforts
Source : Kuwait Times  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Shamlan Al-Essa
The Security Council unanimously adopted the British resolution to sanction six extremists from Al-Qaeda, IS and Nusra, who were condemned by the resolution in both Iraq and Syria because of...
Is There Such a Thing as Terrorism-Lite?
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Ali Ibrahim
If we look at the classification of fizzy drinks, those that claim to be "lite" contain less sugar. But is it possible to also apply this to the classification of...
Assad's ISIS Gambit II
Source : Asharq Al-Awsat  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Tariq Alhomayed
As was expected, and as I predicted in an article last week, the Assad regime rushed to try and exploit the war on the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria...
What next for Iraq?
Source : Gulf Daily News  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Yenus S
The man who led Iraq to its devastation, destruction and sectarian abyss has now left office in disgrace and humiliation....
Cameron must not give IS the conflict it wants
Source : The Peninsula  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Emile Simpson
Last week's murder of US journalist James Foley was shocking – as Islamic State (IS) no doubt intended it to be. The risk is that UK policy, while right in...
The US in black and white
Source : Khaleej Times  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Mahir Ali
A post-racial society under Obama remains like a dream deferred...
A new Berlin Wall
Source : Khaleej Times  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Dr Adil Rasheed
Germans are still divided in the Cold War redux...
Pros and cons of implementing the Sanid unemployment insurance scheme
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Dr. Ali Al-Ghamdi
The Sanid (support) unemployment insurance scheme is one of the social insurance programs recently approved by the government of Saudi Arabia. Under this social integration program, which will soon be...
A quest for superlatives
Source : Saudi Gazette  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Tariq A. Al-Maeena
The city of Jeddah, often referred to as the Bride of the Red Sea, reminds one of a maiden all decked out in fine livery on the outside, but carrying...
The Middle East crack-up
Source : Arab News  
Date : 2014-08-27
Author : Shlomo Avineri
The horror stories emerging from northern Iraq, as well as the continuing slaughter in Syria's civil war, point to a tectonic shift in the Middle East. Almost 100 years after...
Total 200 Results in 14 Pages
  3 
For more news, views and reports about this topic, please subscribe
to GRC website: www.grc.net
Sun Aug 31, 2014| 05-ذو القعدة-1435هـ
KSA 'does not fund or support IS murderers'
Flourishing Saudi economy driving Tadawul performance
No invitation to expelled US official, says Bahrain
Illegal real estate appraisers influencing prices amid boom
Iranian FM hopes for nuclear accord ahead of deadline
KFH maintains positive outlook for construction industry
US sees no IS threat to homeland
Yemeni delegation in France to solve dispute with Canadian Nexen
Yemen welcomes Security Council statement
Iran inaugurates its biggest solar power plant
Prince Salman and Hollande to discuss Middle East security
US Congress, Shurooq find
 investment opportunities
Jihadists behead Iraq Kurdish fighter
Foreign investors buy Dh2.5 billion shares on DFM
US imposes curbs on networks linked to Iran
GCC visitors throng Salalah Tourism Festival
    Newspaper Editorials
New government spells little policy shift in Turkey
Unheard cries of syrian refugees
More>>  
    Opinions
Sliding toward catastrophe
Islamist gains in Syria alarm some Assad allies
More>>  
    GCC Press Agencies
Day's main stories from the GCC Press Agencies
    Reports
Dispute Resolution and Justice Provision in Yemen's Transition
Iran's Nuclear Impasse – Breaking the Deadlock
More>>  
    Bank Reports
GCC Markets Performance – May 2014
Saudi Arabia: Baseline Macroeconomic Forecast 2014-16
More>>  
    GRC Analysis
Saudi-Vietnam Relations
Saudi-Philippines Relations
Enhancing Saudi-Japan Relations
    GRC Commentary
On Relations between Rulers and Citizens: The Need for a New Social/Political Contract in the GCC States
Key Issue Facing the Saudi Ruling House.
    GRC Book Review
Beyond Regionalism? Regional Cooperation, Regionalism and Regionalization in the Middle East
India, GCC and the Global Energy Regime: Exploring Interdependence and Outlook for Collaboration.
    GRC Press Release
Gulf Research Center press releases to the media
    GRC Publications
The Potential for Gulf Energy Integration
Transforming GCC’s Oil and Gas Industry in the 21st Century: Opportunities and Challenges
Demography, Migration, and Labour Market in Qatar
    GRC Newsletters/Bulletins

Enter your email to get the Newsletter
Go
      
Privacy Policy | Contact Us | Terms & Conditions | About Us |
Weather | Qibla Directions | Hijri Date Conversion Tool
Full Page :total time:0  |   58-- 58 Middle Page :0  --   | Right : 58 - 58--en--sess-enreq-en-coming