The Monarch!

So I was wrong. I admit. However moronic Bashar had been at one point, he has now very much proven to be his father’s son. Or, at least, as it might be easier for some of us to believe, “fate” seems to have conspired to make him so. Still, no matter how about we put it, the end result is the same: Bashar is now a full-fledged autocrat, worthy of our full-fledged contempt.

The trials of the past seven years were not centered on reform, as some have imagined, but on the consolidation of power, with the specific purpose of continuing the transformation of Syria into a virtual family estate, as evidenced by the activities of the regime’s new business elite.

The trials of the past four years to be specific also serve to demonstrate that unless there is a consistent long-term international consensus for isolating such rogue regimes, the situation will almost always end in their favor, for managing external crises is a skill that these regimes have had plenty of time to develop and hone. Meanwhile, the situation can always be used as an excuse for a continuing internal crackdown on basic liberties, and all signs of dissent. 

So, and as the US gradually turns its attention inward and gets immersed again with the usual partisan politics of the elections, the belligerence of the Syrian regime, and all others in the region, just look at the continuing crackdown against bloggers in Egypt and Bahrain and the arrest of Haleh Esfandiari in Iran, will only increase. The lion will continue to devour the flock, with an appetite rendered more voracious with rage.

Do all dictators have to look like Saddam or Ahmadinejad to be convincing? Isn’t their record of misdeeds enough, especially when it reads more like a rap sheet?

No. Not in partisan America, where image is everything. So long as the voracious lion looks like a lanky smiling gentle-looking giraffe, who is often accompanied by an equally lanky smiling gentle-looking wife, the American public can be allowed to be fooled. The pundits have spoken.

It is clear now that Bashar is going to have a joyride though the American media over the next few months, and will receive a kiddy glove treatment by most pundits even while his goons deliver stiff jail terms to dissidents in contravention to all international norms in this regard.

And why should they not behave with such impunity, they have just been “engaged?”

Anwar, Kamal and soon Michel, are the first casualties of engagement. And that’s only the beginning.

But this is only a crashing wave, and it will have to break against upon our resistance for it. For, in the final analysis, it all boils down to one thing: there is a group of ravenous predators on the prowl, and we have to protect ourselves, our children and our homes from it. This is an existential battle. It is either us or them, they have made that quite clear now. So, we now have to plan for a confrontation at one point, and let’s see who will this time around (no violence intended or suggested, on my part).


Kamal_labwaniTo Kamal

I can see you smiling even now

in your dark prison cell

laughing in the face of your tormentors

and their promises of hell to come,

yes, an even more hellish hell

than the one they put you through


before you became a symbol for us

all, that is,   

a living symbol,

immersed in that special aura

uniquely reserved

for those who took it upon themselves

to show us the way.

Statement by the Spokesman Sean McCormack

Syria: Sentencing of Kamal Labwani

The United States condemns the government of Syria for its harsh and unjust sentencing of political prisoner Kamal Labwani.  This action against Mr. Labwani reflects the Syrian regime’s contempt for human rights and a legal system devoid of legitimate legal standards. We are also concerned by reports that Mr. Labwani has been subjected to inhumane treatment during his imprisonment.  We call upon the Syrian government to live up to its obligations under the Arab Charter for Human Rights, which it ratified in February 2007, and immediately and unconditionally release all prisoners of conscience.

Kamal was sentenced to 12 years in prison just as the Grand Asshole was delivering his speech to the People’s Assembly vowing not to cooperate with the international tribunal should such cooperation demand a concession on sovereignty. “The abandonment of sovereignty,” he said, “means that Syrian law no longer protects Syrian citizens.” A friend of mine just wrote wondering whether Syrian law does indeed protect Syrian citizens. For as we just observed, Kamal, and before him Anwar, were really given the full protection that Syrian law can afford, which did them a lot of good.

7 thoughts on “The Monarch!

  1. why mincing the word Ammar just say it : he is fully fledged Dictator
    and very soon we will have no ather way but to call for popular revolution

  2. I think and think about your posts…For the life of me I don’t know what the citizens of the U.S. can do to alleviate the situation in Syria.Yes, U.S. foreign policy is now turning toward “realpolitic” again, something that you don’t seem to favor but, revolution and democracy seem to be the greater of evils in international circles.
    The thing about realpolitic is that it isn’t messy in an international way. The fact that it leaves millions under opression is, of course, a side effect. One that can be conveniently ignored by the western press and western gov’ts.
    The rest of the world and, internally in the U.S., many politicians say we should “talk” to Assad, we should “talk” to the mullahs of Iran. After all, they have the best interest of their own people at heart… You and I know this isn’t true but, it is a nice fantasy, no?
    So, on and on we go. The people of Syria not able to realize their own potential, Lebannon hanging in the balance, “dress police” roaming the streets of Tehran but, the U.S. is the evil one…
    Yes, we went into Iraq and broke things, drove Saddam to a hidey hole and filmed him getting his hair checked for bugs… As a U.S. citizen, I would never have guessed that the citizens of Iraq were willing to live with thugs roaming their streets, foreign fighters crazed by religious ideology teaming across their borders, harbored by fellow religionists in country, blowing up women and children at the market or attending school. This was way beyond our understanding.
    So, if the U.S. was naieve about the extent of barbarity willing to be perpetrated on a civilian population by actors inside and outside the country of Iraq; if we were unwilling to believe the extent that neighboring countries would go to throttle a free society then count me guilty…
    Now that the “Iraq experiment” is in its end game with a sure failure for the U.S., democracy, and secular law (and given the many missteps by the U.S. is a granted) we will see quite a bit more opression in neighboring police states, er, countries.
    So, for all of you that thought the U.S. invasion of Iraq was illegal, unwarranted, outrageous, you will now reap what you have sown. I do not say this with any pleasure but, I really must say that it effects me a lot less than it does you… I pay for it at the pump, you pay for it in blood.

  3. Well put Babs. In the final analysis, the modernization and democratization is our responsibiity, and we do and will have to pay for it in blood. For even if we, the liberal few, reject violence, the others won’t.
    But, I believe that the price on your end as well Babs, might be more than just a few more dollars at the pump, as the events of 9/11 showed.
    Be that as it may, indeed, none of us can afford to gloat. We are all getting screwed, one way or another.

  4. Babs,
    It looks like you are Ignorant in addition to your Arrogance; it was always some body’s blood for your pump charges!
    The fact that some peoples level of education democratization or culture, might not be as developed as others societies in the fucking Free World, doesn’t make an excuse to further fuck their already miserable lives in search of few less cents on your fuel bills!
    Perhaps you need to read a little before your start lecturing others how they are solely responsible for what is happening to them, and I am referring you to the history of supporting dictator ships all around the “Other” inferior not-USA world, by the most of the successive US administrations, including the support of Sadam Husain him self!!
    It is the responsibility of the powerful to lend a hand to the weak. But we don’t get this yet, we prefer to beat the hell out of him, then lecture him about how he should help him self.
    But in case of the US of A, what’s really happening is perusing now and all the time its own interests! Democracy… Freedom!! …Please, am about to throw up.
    If you stop spreading your arms candy-gifts to the TALIBANS of the world, maybe people will have some time to think their way out.
    Turn off your TV a couple of hours every week, and try to get some real education.

  5. Well Hammam, I hope that made you feel better!
    The “history of supporting dictatorships all around the world” is also known as Realpolitic! Go along and get along and the hell with who suffers.
    If you re-read my comment you might discern that I do not support it…
    And BTW, why debate when you can just insult? Your anger is certainly palpable but does nothing to further your point of view.
    If you were to take the time to actually read what I wrote, you would understand that I am accusing myself of being ignorant along with the rest of the American people.
    “Count me guilty” is what I said. What part of that didn’t you get?
    Did you hear the one about the guy that walked into the hotel restaurant in Pakistan yesterday? He blew himself up taking with him 23 others including the Pakistani owner and several of his family members? Attached to the bomber’s leg (which was completely severed from his body) was a note “warning” others of their fate should they become “American Spies”. That is one hell of a way to deliver the mail. I am completely disgusted by the random carnage. If that makes me “arrogant” in your eyes then you need glasses.

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