Friday, October 16, 2015

Understanding The Syrian Conflict, Could It Lead To World War III ?

After enduring decades of authoritarian governments the people of several middle- eastern countries raised their voices in protest.[See Article] This uprising of discontent was called the " Arab Spring."

Syrian Conflict
Image From via flickr
In Egypt and Tunisia, the revolutions were quick and decisive. In Libya, the protest led to an immediate " Civil War." which ended with the death of Moammar Gadhafi.


Syria Is Another Story!

 Bashir Al-Assad 
This is Bashir Al-Assad president of Syria. Assad father Hafez Al-Assad ruled Syria for 30 years before him. Assad father did modernize Syria. However, he did so at a cost of a brutal repression.  Bashir Al-Assad came into power after his father's death in 2000. At first it appeared that Bashir Al-Assad would be a different kind of leader than his father. But, this honeymoon with the Syrian people did not last. With the first signs of dissent, Assad tightened the rights of free speech in Syria isolated its economy and let it be known very precisely that Democratic rule was not in his plans. After 12 years of repression had passed thousands of people following the examples of the Egyptians and Tunisians took to the streets demanding reforms. At first Assad stance was conciliatory. However, the Syrian government under Assad continued to repress the Syrian people that in turn multiplied protest around the country. Things came to boil when the"Syrian Army" opened fire on the protesters. Hundreds of people were killed, and thousands more were arrested. 

Any chance of a peaceful solution died with the death of the protesters  Small groups of armed rebels formed quickly all over Syria. Since then government and rebels have been fighting in a brutal Civil War.

"More than 250,000 Syrians have lost their lives in four-and-a-half years of armed conflict, which began with anti-government protests before escalating into a full-scale civil war. More than 11 million others have been forced from their homes by forces loyal to President Bashir Al-Assad and those opposed to his rule battle each other."[See Source]

What Are the Roots Of The Conflict?

Syrian Conflict
Syrian Rebel
After World War I the French and the British established borders of the middle-eastern countries. In doing so, they grouped many ethnic groups in the same territories. One of them[Enthic Groups] the Alawites has been in command of Syria since the 1970's The Alawites make up about 12% of the Syrian population. Under the ideology of keeping the country out of the hands of extremist Assad sect, the Alawites by military force have crushed any who would challenge their authority. 

Why Has The Syrian Conflict Extended For So Long?

Since the outset of the war, it was clear that this conflict would last a long time. Mainly, because these "Rebel Groups" don't have the numbers, weapons, and a unifying ideology. The only real thing these groups of rebels have in common is a deep hate for Assad. Over The weeks, months, and now years the numbers and weapons of the Rebel groups have increased but not enough to topple Assad. Also, the Assad government is now being supported by Iran. Moreover, many of these "Rebel Groups," have abused, killed, and displaced civilians in the name of the revolution.  Which begs the question is the "cure worse than the disease.

Why Isn't The U.S., Europe Or The United Nations Doing Anything?

On of the main reasons is that both Russia and China blocked any UN sanctions that could have been effective against Syria at the beginning of the conflict. Russia and China have an interest in Syria. Also, the leaders in Russia and China believe that the " Arab Spring." has not brought security or stability to the region. The Untied States has not intervened because there is a mistrust of these "Rebel Groups," and their ideologies and by aiding these Rebels would strengthen radical Islamic groups. 

Many experts have predicted that the Assad regime will fall eventually. The $64,000 question is how long will it take? Although the main "Rebel Groups" have joined an alliance against Assad this alliance could crumble once Assad is removed from power. Which could result in a struggle for power that would make the conditions in Syria even worse? 
Also, as we already see now, the conflict could extend to other countries like Turkey, Lebanon, and Iraq. The Middle-East region has been unstable since anyone reading this article can remember. Anyone with half a brain cell knows this area is fragile, and World War III could very well start from this part of the world.

Syrian Conflict

No matter the outcome whoever assumes power in Syria will inherit a country in ruins with an economy in shambles and a deeply divided population. All this will provide a severe challenge to fulfill the narrative of the Arab Spring. The Syrian Conflict is a very complex problem for the leaders of this world. It has brought both misery and death on a scale seldom ever seen before. 

Syria's war: Who is fighting and why? 

Written By: Johnny Hill

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