There is evil in every man. How it is expressed and what are its limitations differentiates one man from another.

Those with extreme evil though are a very rare species. When discovered, men with lesser evil but with more power will inevitably get attracted to it like a divorced rich man is attracted to a gun for hire to dispose of his alimony. That’s why the Assad regime existed for so long. Yes, it is evil many would argue privately but it serves a good purpose for the greater good of humanity.

The relationships between two democratic countries, who value life, while true to serving their mutual interests, are a time-tested concept. We witness it every day between France and Germany or the US and Britain. Their people enjoy strong rights based on thoughtful laws and their governments co-exist harmoniously in times of peace; and when wars strike, they patch their differences quickly for another long era of peace. In fact, they use the history of those wars to defend against them.

So are the relationships between autocratic countries like Syria and Sudan but with one minor difference: There are no laws that respect human dignity. Life to regimes of tyranny is cheaper than the bullet used to kill with. And because autocracies are generally evil, other countries with pressing needs take advantage of this weakness to conclude their affairs.

The Assad family with a run-away DNA of horrors has and remains a unique offering for countries around the world. It’s a resource that comes once every few hundred years and evil men elsewhere are not about to miss this grand opportunity to press further their interests. On that basis, Assad survived for as long as it had.

The KGB trained Assad to serve it and the CIA took advantage of its flexibility to expedite its business. The French DGSE and the British MI5 distanced themselves from its evil by playing nice and the Israeli Mossad distanced itself by playing tough when necessary. Everyone treated the regime as untouchable because to each it was a trough in the desert. But while everyone had their reasons, the Syrian people were always left to foot the bill. We served at the mercy of other countries and interests because our own region collectively does not value life.

We cannot blame the Europeans, the Americans or even the Russians; we are to blame for our own environment. You see, when the Arab League defends Bachir of Sudan, it opens the door wide open for human rights abuses with a global approach. If the Middle East was a shopping mall, our own human life would be  the “For Sale” sign. We are cheap and that’s why everyone comes shopping there. That’s why the Assad regime, a combination of extreme evil in an environment facilitating that evil, has been useful to many. The regime stands for “80% off” human life. Countries would be fools not to shop in the Assad store of horrors.

But with Assad about to go and the Arab League left intact with the same political disregard for human life, which country will serve the role Assad served? Which store will hold the “80% off” sign?

For that question, we need to poll the shoppers.

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