Will Assad Cry Wolf if Syrians Start Defending Themselves?

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Saudia Stirring

For those who missed the interview Imad Mustapha, Assad’s propaganda envoy to the US, gave to CNN, it is worth viewing it again against the background of another article recently published by Anthony Shadid at the NY Times entitled: “Syria”™s Protesters, Long Mostly Peaceful, Starting to Resort to Violence.

Mr. Mustapha is aware already of ambushes against several Syrian army units unleashing death and destruction upon unarmed civilians. The regime has, from the beginning, mounted a propaganda campaign to justify its terror by claiming it is fighting foreign-supported terrorists. No matter the lack of evidence, Assad’s words have been driven by the notion that if you repeat a lie often enough, it becomes a truth.

However, it is clear today that Assad’s propaganda is falling on deaf ears purified by the untold number of videos reaching the outside world showing the Assad’s terror machine against unarmed civilians, including women and children.

Now that the Syrian people are starting to defend themselves, Mustapha is crying wolf. The fact that his boss instigated the violence and killed at will for over six months matters not. All that matters now is the fear we are starting to see on the faces of the Assad regime men as their miscalculation over reforms vs. oppression is leading Syria into an abyss of sectarianism and violence to last at least a decade.

But more than anything, deserting Syrian soldiers who refused to fire on protestors and whose number is estimated to be around 2,000 (According to many sources inside Syria, Assad killed about 700 deserters) are playing the most important role in shaping a defensive posture by going on the offensive against the regime. Their expertise, as professional soldiers, provided the confidence and the Syrian people, suffering from mass killings, provided the motivation.

There are even rumors circulating in Homs that several mothers, whose children were killed by snipers and tank shells, were behind volunteering their remaining sons to stand-up and fight the army of Assad. Many of these mothers were quite young when they witnessed the destruction of Hama by another Assad and were intent on not letting Homs fall prey to the terror of this family.

Even if Assad wants to stop the violence today, it is too late for the regime and too late for Syria. This cauldron of fire, driven by hate on both sides, will burn for a long time.

RPS expects Mustapha to mount a media campaign to reinforce the earlier claims made by the regime; either to justify continued killing or to raise the bar of violence by unleashing terror on a larger scale. But given the regime has lost all credibility and given that many governments around the world are breathing a sigh of relief knowing that Syrians are solving their own problems without resorting to foreign aid or military assistance, I would say it would be better for Mustapha to put his energy to extract his boss from the hole he dug for all of them. Those violent men Mustapha speaks for still think they can rule Syria.

Now all we need is a Syrian Homer to write our own llyad. 


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