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How Syria Sees the War

John on March 24, 2006 at 1:09 pm

Syrian political analyst Sami Moubayed writes a piece for the Asia Times criticizing the war. No surprise there. What is consistently amazing (at least to me) is how his piece represents a perfect distillation of anti-war tropes put forward in the US by Move On and Daily Kos. A few examples:

Apart from the downfall of Saddam, not a single achievement in Iraq is noteworthy. The country today is a “democracy” in civil war – a democracy where human life is being wasted, along with the dreams and security of the Iraqi people. Inasmuch as free elections are a great asset of which all oppressed people dream, they mean nothing if security is lacking.

Free elections are a great asset, not that Syrians would know. He continues election bashing…

History will not remember the free elections that took place in January and December 2005 as much as it will remember the notorious pictures of the torture at Abu Ghraib prison. The killings and the death squads that haunt the streets of Iraq will live much longer in the minds of Iraqi people than the image of Saddam’s statue falling in Baghdad.

Sounds like this guy could be an editor at the NY Times. His next paragraph makes explicit what is often implicit in liberal demagoguery, i.e. Iraqi’s were better off under Saddam:

Inasmuch as some Arabs want democracy, they will always vote for stability as a high priority. It would be great if they could achieve both, but if it is a choice between a democracy with no stability and a dictatorship with stability, they will chose the latter option.

Under Saddam, an Iraqi citizen who minded his own business, who did not involve himself in politics, and who cared only for the livelihood of his family could live a secure life.

I really hope Michael Moore is getting royalties for all the copies of Farenheit 9/11 owned by Middle-Easter dictators. But wait! Here’s one more from the Moore playbook:

The United States went to war with many interests…unannounced objectives were to control a new revenue of Arab oil, further establish itself in the Arab world and the Persian Gulf, obtain reconstruction contracts for giants such as Halliburton and Bechtel…

Halliburton! What a relief he was able to squeeze that into the “additional miscellaneous criticisms” section of the piece. Also in this section:

  1. The Zogby Poll
  2. Iraq Body Count
  3. The need for 450,000 troops (recently mentioned by Begala on CNN)

Again, anyone think this guy is in line for the job at ABC once they fire the current BDS casualty? There is one notable difference, however, between Syrian totalitarians and US liberals. Unlike his Kos counterparts, Mr.Moubayed has a workable solution:

They need a strong man…not a Saddam, but a powerful man who has the will and ability to be forceful on all sects and bring everybody under the strict authority of the central government. This is a concept that must be accepted by Iraqi politicians and the US administration.

Yes, I can see that now…a kinder, gentler dictator. Someone nearby perhaps. Someone who knows how to maintain control with only the occasional assasination. Someone like Syria’s own dear leader Bashar al-asad. Now why didn’t I think of that?

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Category: Foreign Affairs |

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