The Assad regime has new rules for its citizens wishing to obtain new passports. It won’t ask any of the 17 intelligence services for a review of their files before granting their wish. Gee wiz, should we erect a statue of Assad next to Einstein’s on Constitution Avenue?
Why it won’t ask its intelligence services? Because all Syrian refugees are on one list or another having left the country without the permission of one intelligence service or another. Humorous, is it not?
This new Assad passport ploy is aimed at all the refugees who were forced out of the country now living in abhorrent conditions in Turkey, Jordan, and Lebanon. Why such generosity? Because the fees have been doubled to $400 per passport, and the regime is looking to fill its coffers in order to barrel bomb those remaining and send more refugees abroad.
Get the irony? Call the new Assad passport ploy the Assad Refugee Carousel.
Where would poor and hapless Syrians get each $400 per passport when they hardly have enough for their daily needs? Maybe the regime thinks that some of the $3.8 billion recently raised through a donor conference can be earmarked to help people return home. If so, Assad wants his cut.
Moreover, this new Assad passport ploy apply to non-refugee Syrians who had the means to live abroad. They are being asked to return or to visit in order to snarl them to fight for the regime. Far fetched? Think again.
We believe both Europe and the U.S. should place a ban on the use of international aid that may end up lining Assad’s pockets. It will be the ultimate foolish act if the west falls for this ploy only to find out Assad has used the funds to send even more refugees, with his Chlorine Gas and barrel bombs, scrambling again to Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan.
As for Syrians, they should all boycott such ploys. If Syrians do not recognize the Assad regime as the legitimate government, they shoukl also boycott anything emanating from this government.