Syrian human rights activist Ammar Abdulhamid, with the Washington-based Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, says his contacts in Syria tell him there is no evidence of a surge in aid to the rebels.
“I do not really see any intensification of these efforts. I see a lot of leaks, it seems to me, that were sort of primed to show that something is being done. But the reality is, so far on the ground, we have not detected any real involvement by the U.S. in the ongoing military operations in the country,” Abdulhamid said. Continue reading →
The accumulating criticism of Syria in the Arab world is “a moral boost to the protest movement in the country and the opposition groups outside,” said Ammar Abdulhamid, a Syrian human-rights activist at the Foundation for the Defence of Democracy in Washington. “But it will have no direct practical effect unless it is coupled with greater support to the Free Syrian Army, the establishment of safe zones inside Syrian territories and the imposition of a no-fly/no-go zone.” “The Assads are committed wholeheartedly to the ongoing militarized crackdown,” Mr. Abdulhamid said, “and they will not be moved and removed by mere symbolic gestures and diplomatic pressures.”
The Jordanian authorities are still moving adamantly with their case against Hamas and the Syrian regime. The recent televised confessions of a Hamas suspect may seem like a page out of an old and worn out book, but it does betray a serious commitment to taking this matter to its logical conclusion: a confrontation with the Assad regime. When the Jordanian monarch warned against the rise of the Shia crescent, he was not mincing words or sound-bites. Rather, he was speaking as a true believer in the ultimate necessity of seeing this unholy crescent collapse and fall apart. He is a Hashemite after all. Continue reading →
I am not sure what to make of the recent accusations streaming out of Amman against Hamas leaders in Damascus. Are they part of the Jordanian King’s attempt at cornering the Syrian regime as part of some containment plan against the Shia Crescent? Could be, I guess. But if there is any truth to the allegations being made, then the Syrian regime has just given the world one more reason for why regime change in Syria is necessary.
Rather than impose democracy on the Arab world, the United States seeks to support the building blocks for political and economic reform that already exist throughout the region. But as the first installment in AEI’s Dissent and Reform in the Arab World conference series has shown, the brave and bright reformers at the heart of democratic change have little political space with which to work and grow. Continue reading →