First posted on my short-lived blog Tharwalizations.
In the year 2000, it took the Syrian parliament, the so-called People’s Assembly, less than 30 minutes to amend the country’s long-standing constitution in order to make way for Bashar al-Assad to succeed his recently deceased father, Hafiz al-Assad, as the country’s new president. Not a single voice of dissention was heard. But one MP did have the bravery to suggest that the debate should last longer and that the process of amending the constitution needs to be elaborate somehow in order to safeguard the country’s image, not to mention that to the upcoming president. The brave MP was severely rebuked for even thinking that. MPs in Baathist Syria were not meant to think, period. Continue reading