SOHR exclusive | “The Syrian Revolution is the victim of Syria’s strategic geopolitical position,” say Syrian politicians
Some Syrians have become too depressed to commemorate the anniversary of the Syrian Revolution which they had thought it would be the first step towards getting rid of a tyrant and placing Syria in better position, where the Syrians expected that they could enjoy democracy, obtain peace and reach decent standards of living. No one expected that the peaceful uprising would turn into the most violent war in the 21st century ever, which has been raging for over 11 years, or that their country might have witnessed intervention of foreign and regional powers leading to the division of Syria, destroying its infrastructure, killing and displacing millions of innocent Syrian civilians and dominating the country’s resources.
Despite all plights, pain and sufferings Syrian people have endured for these years, many have never given up hope and look forward to reaching a settlement in Syria based on the UN decisions and resolutions.
In an exclusive SOHR interview with a member of the political committee of the Syrian National Coalition (SNC), Abdullah Kado says, “Syrian people launched their peaceful revolution, motivated by their revolutionary spontaneity and their unlimited yearning for obtaining freedom and regaining their dignity, given that they were deprived, for more than half a century, from their rights to practice politics and freedom of expression and to form parties. That situation created a state of political desertification which has not enabled the Syrians to gather politicians with sufficient experience to decipher the difficult political equation and reach regional and international balances in light of the varying tensions in terms of the geopolitical importance of Syria. The Syrian people thought that their revolution would be victorious within months, but influential regional and international parties, including those which have defined themselves as ‘friends’ of the Syrian people, failed to continue providing material and moral support under the pretext of ‘militarisation and Islamisation’ of the revolution. Those parties did not provide support even to the Syrian movements rejecting militarism and Islamism; this confirms that the policy of immediate political interests and balances has remained dominant. It is not about respecting human rights or exerting efforts to reach a stable security situation in the long run.”
Kado continues, “it seems that many factors, including the geographical location of Syria, on the border with Palestine, the Russian interests in Syria, which was one of the areas dominated by the Soviet Union and then by Russia, especially at the levels of the military and political situations, and Iran’s intervention in the cultural, sectarian, political and economic affairs since the beginning of Khomeini’s rule, have left a tangible effect on complicating the situation in Syria, as all influential parties involved in the Syrian conflict have turned the crisis into a bargaining chip to use in various negotiations.
The Syrian crisis, addressed by opposition parties, has become an axis of dispute among various parties which are waiting for reaching a middle ground to meet their narrow interests in light of lack of a tangible influence by the United Nations, although the Syrian regime was found involved in using internationally prohibited weapons and committing crimes, including the killing of 11,000 prisoners under torture, the crime known as ‘Caesar Victims’ photos.”
Commenting on the role of the Syrian opposition recently, Mr. Kado stated, “the Syrian revolutionary and opposition bodies have kept clinging to the slogan that demonstrators chanted since the first spark of the Syrian Revolution, ‘people want the toppling of the regime,’ However, they were unable to overcome the stalemate caused by the inaction of international and regional powers and disagreements among them, where these bodies remained waiting for the end of that state of stalemate manifested in the failure to apply international decisions. These bodies also failed to bring the head of the Syrian regime, ‘parasites’ and cronies close to the ruling class to international courts, renew uprising in Syria, or carry out any other changes.”
On the other hand, Brigadier General Ahmed Hamada told SOHR, “11 years have passed since the beginning of the Syrian Revolution against an oppressive and tyrant regime which killed people and sold the country to occupying powers. During these years Syrian people have experienced nothing but poverty, hunger and oppression. Syrians took to the streets to get rid of injustice, oppression, corruption and tyranny, but they were met with extreme violence and deadly weapons. These weapons were used against innocent civilians, including chemical weapons, phosphorous and barrel bombs.”
Mr. Ahmed criticised the international community’s “mishandling” of the crisis which it has failed so far to put an end to, as it withheld weapons from Syrian people, allowing Russian, Iranian and regime forces to continue their atrocities without resistance or deterrence. He also stated that the United Nations resolutions were met with 16 Russian vetoes, and the Geneva outcomes remained on hold. Moreover, these outcomes were dwarfed and wrapped around by Russia and Iran.
Mr. Hamada pointed out that “Obama had abandoned the red line and agreed on the entry of the Russians who dreamed of imposing influence on the region without a time limit, and this was confirmed by the former French Prime Minister De Villepin. In addition, Iran and its proxy sectarian militias were allowed to intervene militarily in Syria in return for settling the file of the nuclear agreement. Accordingly, the blood and pain of the Syrian people, who gave a million martyrs, 12 million displaced people, and 260,000 people of unknown fate in Assad’s regime prisons, was turned into an auction within the international game.”
Meanwhile, the writer and regime opponent journalist, Ahmed Sa’dou told SOHR, “the current crisis in Syria has turned the Syrian reality into a complete stagnation and vicious circle, in a state of relative decline geographically as well as politically and at all levels, and retreated to a secondary issue among the majority of the Syrian opposition in all shades of the political and military spectrum.
“one of the factors which has led to the current disastrous situation in Syria is the fact that the Syrian opposition have relied mainly on international and regional powers and placed the decision in their hands. While the globalised abandonment is also another major reason behind the current situation, and it has contributed to placing further obstacles impeding the political settlement in Syria. The reason behind keeping the international resolutions unfulfilled is that the international community has turned a blind eye to Putin’s ambitions and reprehensible practices by Russia and Iran, allowing the Russian Federation to carry on with other tracks, such notorious conference in Astana, to evade United Nations resolutions and Geneva Conventions, where Astana conference has enabled the Syrian regime and its supporters to regain nearly two thirds of Syria’s geography. Russia later turned to Sochi track and the Constitutional Committee to waste more time without making any significant progress. The Syrian crisis therefore has been ignored at a time when Syrian people are struggling with the toughest living conditions ever in Syria.”
“The weak and dispersed Syrian opposition seems disinterested in Syrian affairs and has contributed to the disruption of many institutions, including the negotiation commission, which has been inactive for more than two years with no ability to even hold a meeting in light of disagreements among opposition parties themselves, with each party following different international agendas and being unable to has independent national decision. Accordingly, the Syrian opposition has failed so far to revive the power of the Syrian Revolution and reach a ‘Syrian social contract’ with the participation of all ethnicities.”
11 years have passed after the first spark of the Syrian revolution, during which Syrian people experienced nothing but death and displacement over a “crazy” war defined as the most violent and dramatic conflict since the World War II. Meanwhile, Syria’s destiny will remain unclear as long as international resolutions are on hold.