September 15, 2013
The solution is to destroy the weapons. The Syrian opposition groups should recognise the value that the international community taking an interest in a catalogue of atrocities committed in what appears to be a very destructive and beyond horrific experience for the entire civilian population. Assad seems unable to release his iron grip on power but ultimately step by step the Russians can be entirely influential it seems. The instant agreement given by the Assad regime means it fears military intervention as it should from a potentially formidable foe (for example, NATO) if it does not comply with the humanist objective of removing the offending weapons from the equation. They could fall into the hands of the opposition groups and it is a strategic disadvantage in the endgame of this war to have them.
Consider the unlikely scenario that Assad is correct in saying that the opposition groups launched the multiple coordinated chemical weapons attacks that genocidal day a couple of weeks ago. Instant compliance is explained in that scenario. Now consider that even if Assad was in control of the chemical weapon attack the danger of such weapons, scattered around the country poses an existential threat to both sides. Removal of them return him to certain dominance.
September 10, 2013
The world is divided on the response to Syria and the use of chemical weapons there.
The Obama administration has done all the right things to launch a punishing response that does not seem an act of aggression, which clearly it is not. But although the moral dimension can be appreciated there are other ways to update our understanding of human social evolution. War is the death process for civilisations. Syria has been invaded, been at war, suffered military coups for centuries and of course more recently was defeated by and lost territory to Israel in 1967. Syria has been in the constant thrall of war and continues now to be at war with itself. It has one of the more brutal dictators who has fought a civil war against a rebellion that has been joined by Al Qaeda
The use of Chemical Weapons required a stockpile of them. Which side used them is the subject of Russia’s case against attacking Syria, the US seems to focus on the evidence of the scale of the attacks that it is only rationale to see the Government as the only party in control of that many weapons in a coordinated attack in over ten locations. Assad denies giving the order. That his generals would act independently is worse.
Does the country Syria deserve to suffer for the actions of its brutal leadership? Well, indeed most countries suffer somewhat the ineptitude of their political classes. Why we tend to want rule by the despotic is not a tendency on the part of the population. It is the very basic tendency we have to follow the leader. Democracy is a game of follow the leader.
Syria has generated its own internal frictions, another schism erupting away for centuries it seems between Shiite and Sunni. Would an attack stop the launch of more chemical weapons?