By Avi Lipkin
In a recent news report on Kol Israel Radio (July 9th, 2011) it was reported that over 60,000 Syrians have been detained by the Syrian government for questioning and probably torture. Much of the world is distressed to say the least at daily reports of army massacres of Syrian civilians, many of which are unarmed. And the question asked is: How much longer can Bashar Assad survive? Another question is: How long can the Alawite Shi’ite leadership survive? And what will come in its place?
There are three approaches to Syria, in my opinion: Israel’s approach, Turkey’s approach and US President Barack Obama’s approach.
Of course, Israel has made peace with Egypt and Jordan. Israel has also been negotiating with the Palestinians. Even though the relationship with Egypt, Jordan and the Palestinians leaves much to be desired from the Israeli perspective, the absence of real wars like 1948-9 and 1973-74 is, it would seem a valid justification for such agreements and continued negotiations.
There have been signs over the last few decades that former prime minister Rabin
and second-time Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have been close to agreement with Syria as well, but this northern neighbor has always been considered the most “hardline” of our Arab neighbors.
When looking at the Syrian regime, one sees a leadership representing 10% of Syria’s population, the Shi’ite Alawites, about 10% of the population which is Christian and the remaining 80% of the population which is Sunni Moslem. It was
Bashar’s father Hafez al-Assad who said: “The Arabs can lose 5 wars, 6 wars, 7 wars or 99 wars against the Jews. All we need is to win one war.” He also said, “There is no agreement without Jerusalem.” He also said, anyone who sacrifices one inch of Jerusalem is a traitor, and we know the fate of traitors in the Arab world.” It was also Hafez al-Assad who killed appoximately 30,000 Sunni’s in Hama in 1982 when the Syrian army used artillery, tanks and aircraft to completely wipe out a quarter in the city of Hama. And no one said anything about that massacre.
So it would seem to me that the Syrians are the most intransigent of our neighbors. For all the imperfections of our relations with the Egyptians, Jordanians and Palestinians, we have been living in relative peace with these neighbors since the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
So the Syrian leadership faces a problem with its approach to peace with Israel and an internal problem in which 10% of the population rules in partnership together with the Christians of Syria over 80% of the Syrian population which is
Sunni and waiting for its day of revenge over the ruthless suppression of the vast majority of the population. And by the way, if Bashar Assad were to make peace with Israel, he would be seen by the Sunnis has making an illegitimate peace with the Jewish/Zionist enemy, a peace that would be immediately revoked once the Sunnis come to power. So the logical conclusion is that the present regime cannot possibly make peace with Israel.
By the way, Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has said that should Syria or Hizbullah attack Israel, it would be the end of the “Alawites” in Syria, meaning that the Sunnis would annihilate the Alawites and probably the Christians as well, God-forbid.
Then there is Turkey. After the Ataturk secular traditions of Turkey were and are being overthrown by the fanatic Hamas-styled Moslem Brotherhood government of Rajjip Tayib Erdogan, the Turkish prime minister saw fit to end what was a de
facto military alliance with Israel and aim at a replacement alliance with Syria
and Iran. But in my opinion God, through the “Arab Spring” and the uprising in Syria “reshuffled the deck”. Turkey, as a Sunni Moslem country was unhappy, to say the least, with the massacre of Sunni co-religionist citizens of Syria and according to some sources threatened to invade Syria and create a “cordon-sanitaire” for Sunnis to flee to within Syria but abutting the Turkish border where they would be safe from the Alawite-led Syrian army. Again, according to reports I received, Turkey was placed on alert following threats from their erstwhile new allies, Syria and Iran, that Turkey would be hit by massive missile attacks if the Turks invaded Syria, even for humanitarian reasons.
Some people in Turkey, Israel and the US have even suggested that Turkey return to its former alliance to defend itself from Syria and Iran including receiving Iron Dome anti-missile defense systems to protect itself and its American bases in Turkey from such missile attacks.
Finally, there is President Barack Obama who has promised that he would never go to war against another Moslem country. But since Iran and its proxies Syria and
Lebanese Hizbullah are seen as a threat to Western interests, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia (and even little Israel!), the US would not be adverse to “democracy” happening in Syrian, ie. the Sunnis taking over in Syria and terminating the Shi’ite/Christian minority rule in Syria. The Sunnis, of course, would be assisted by Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
The overthrow of the Bashar al-Assad regime would by extension mean the eventual
termination of the fanatic Shi’ite Hizbullah domination of Lebanon, both tentacles of the Iranian regime. In turn, the writing would be on the wall for the Ayatollah regime in Teheran.
Many people say that the entire “Arab Spring” phenomenon throughout the Arab world would be dominated by the fanatic Sunni Moslem Brotherhood which, of course, seeks the termination of Shi’ite Islam, and this aim could be achieved without American intervention by the US President. The question then would be: Will this “caliphate” of Sunnis then seek to storm Israel by force in an “Armageddon” type invasion once the Shi’ite threat was terminated. Obama would prefer that proxies or in western terms “useful idiots” in the Moslem world would terminate the Bashar al-Assad regime, then the Hizbullah, and then Iran. The final remaining enemy to be dealt with later by these Moslem Brotherhood regimes would be Jewish Israel.
So does Bashar al-Assad have a Syrian “Samson’s Option” or will he leave the scene quietly? Will he decide to “bring the house down” by attacking Israel to deflect the Moslem world’s attention away from his predicament? In my opinion, one way or another, the eventual takeover of Syria by the Sunni’s led by the Turkish backed Moslem Brotherhood is inevitable. We mustn’t forget Turkey’s imperialist ambitionsand history. Syria was once the southern province of Ottoman Turkey, and that includes, Lebanon, Jordan and Israel. The Turks’ dream of the restoration of their empire from the heart of Europe to Mecca, from the Atlantic Ocean to China would then be realized.
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