Repeated threats by PM Erdogan did not work, nor didÂ repeatedÂ retaliatory strikes byÂ TurkeyÂ against Syrian positions stopÂ AssadÂ from targeting Turkish territories through cross border mortar attacks.
Given a set of risks and rewards being contemplated byÂ AssadÂ in a desperate move toÂ saveÂ his faltering, on life support regime, I believeÂ AssadÂ intentionally wantsÂ TurkeyÂ to engage his regime militarily in order to drawÂ RussiaÂ into this regional conflict on the basis of a war between secularism and Islamic extremism but whose purpose is to confront NATO. As America enteredÂ AfghanistanÂ to fight Islamic terror,Â AssadÂ wantsÂ RussiaÂ to enterÂ SyriaÂ to save secularism by fighting Islamic extremism, one he has conveniently created through acts of extreme barbarism and for which his regime was never shy about YouTubing for the world to witness.
The apathy of theÂ ObamaÂ administration towardsÂ SyriaÂ is not only compounding the problems on a regional level but it may also lead to the direct involvement of Russian troops in theÂ Middle EastÂ for the first time in our history. RussiaÂ has been confrontational towards NATO and Assad wantsÂ RussiaÂ to turn Syria into an anti-NATO shield for the East. By drawingÂ TurkeyÂ intoÂ Syria, Assad is calculatingÂ RussiaÂ will have no choice, given the high-value it placed on its SyrianÂ interestsÂ through repeated vetoing of any sanctions againstÂ SyriaÂ at the UN, but to act to defendÂ AssadÂ from an angry Islamist leader who also happens to be securing NATO”™s interests in the region. Whether Assad succeeds or not remains to be seen. But I can almost imagine the twinkle in Putin”™s eyes as he contemplates this huge vacuum left behind by an errant and naive President of the United States.
As the apathy of the Obama administration in Libya led to the tragedy resulting in the death of four US diplomats, so is his neglect of Syria leading to erode further America”™s interests in the Middle East.
Surely, the West must see the danger facing the region as it continues to deny the Syrian people unfettered aid to defeat Assad. Surely the West must see the consequences of this fast developing regional conflict. Surely the West must understand who will fill the vacuum left by the United States. The multilateral UN approach was but a trap the naivetÃ© of Obama was a perfect fit for and 30 days left to US elections, the axis of evil understands Obama well enough to know he will not act under any circumstances because he is more focused onÂ winningÂ this election than protecting US interests.
I have never seen the West lacking in leadership this way before. The free world today is a hostage to a community organizer more interested in cocooning US exceptionalism than in protecting what traditionally has been a responsibility shared by the few for the benefit of all humanity. If Assad succeeds with his plan, Obama would be the first US President to lose the region to a cocktail of traditional US enemies bent on eroding US power globally each in his own way, thus providing the impetus for US enemies to occupy the Middle East as he retreats from the region using one pretext or another.Â Europe must surely understand Obama has become a danger to its own interests as well.
What should worry everyone today though is the American public totally unaware of what is at stakes here if Obama wins this election.
(Farid Ghadry is the President of the US-based Reform Party of Syria. Blog:Â http://reform4syria.org)