Bloodshed continues to rise in Syria since the 10-month uprising began last March.
After a month of sending 165 monitors to Syria, the League of Arab States imposed more sanctions on 22 Syrian officials and eight entities that support the Assad regime and has demanded President Bashar Al Assad step down and peacefully transfer all power to a Syrian Vice President.
Stripping the current President from all power does not resolve the Syrian conflict and will not place an end to the violence. The League of Arab States needs to make decisions based on what the monitors witnessed during their stay in Syria and acknowledge the progress the Syrian government has made since the entrance of the monitors.
According to Human Rights Watch, the death toll since the crackdown has reached 5,000 because of the government “crackdown” on peaceful, unarmed citizens. They do not distinguish the armed groups from the civilians or from the military forces and do not keep violent opposition groups, gangs or terrorists accountable for the violence as well.
Since the Arab League monitors entered Syria there has been a noticeable rise in bombs and terrorist acts in big industrial cities like Damascus and Aleppo. On Dec. 23 terrorists attacked the Syrian National Security in the capital, Damascus, using car bombs, leading to more than 40 deaths and 100 injuries. That attack was followed by two other bombings during the next two weeks, including an explosive which detonated on a military bus transferring forces to the center of the capital.
The sanctions placed on Syria are also negatively impacting the people, not the government. The United Nations, European Union, and the League ignore this impact on the civilians.
“It is only destroying us as people,” said Diana Daher, Medical student at the University of Aleppo. “We are not even able to enjoy our private lives because everyone now lives in fear.”
“Syria has always been known for its safety and peaceful lifestyle but now we don’t even want food, we just want to feel safe again knowing that we don’t have to wake up the next morning to hear about another bombing or another death.”
What the League is doing to Syria is not for the best for the Syrian civilians. They need to sustain some kind of system before they think of removing the whole system. President Al Assad has been a foundation for a peaceful, secure and secular country, and once he is removed, the nation will crumble.
Until the “revolution” began, Assad maintained high security in Syria, where women were safe to be out until late, foreigners felt safe regardless of any language barriers and where no terrorism threatened the country. For the past century, civilians have not been concerned about bombs exploding or shooting as a leading cause of death.
Although the Assad regime has used military forces against protesters, this action was taken based upon the request of the majority of civilians. In the case of Syria, there are armed groups who take advantage of the political unrest and the gathering of protesters to create chaos. Civilians continued to call for the aid of the Syrian military to secure them after a month’s worth of violence since the uprising started. The Syrian Government aimed to ensure the security needs of the civilians and did not cater to outside demands from the west.
Improvements in ending the violence have been made by Assad. According to the most recent report presented to the League by the monitors, the Syrian government released thousands of prisoners and pulled back the number of military forces and tanks from the streets since the league sent the observers to Syria.
International intervention within the Middle East should be treated with suspicion. Because President Al Assad is the only Arab president who continues to support Iran, Palestine, and Hezbollah, it makes it obvious why many governments globally want to remove him from power.
Qatar’s Foreign Minister Hamad bin Jassim al Thani, who coordinates the Syrian sanctions and is one of the main characters in the Syrian conflict said there needs to be, “a total revision of the mission.” Before he gets concerned with the Syrian people and their safety, it is not a bad idea for him to look over his neighboring country of Bahrain where security forces are killing protesters with the help Saudi Arabia’s of army.
In April the U.S. forced the Syrian government to remove its Emergency Law, which permits the government to make arrests without reasoning. Ironically, the U.S. government recently adopted the National Defense Authorization Act, which gives the president the power to hold U.S. citizens suspected of Terrorism in indefinite detention in the “land of the free.”
According to President Obama in his State of the Union address on Tuesday, he said President Assad cannot continue for long under his rule as, “the forces of change cannot be reversed and human dignity cannot be denied.”
However, President Obama supports Israel with “an iron clad commitment” although Israel kills Palestinians on a daily basis.
The world needs to recognize that the “Arab Spring” has not been positive for the Middle East, and should not tamper with the politics of Syria. Although Tunisia celebrated its one-year anniversary of overthrowing the regime, the country continues to deal with unrest and violence. Egypt and Libya are also further examples of unsuccessful revolutions, and their instability continues to cause daily deaths. Syria will end up in shambles if the world continues to mess around with its future.