U.S. Seeks a New Opposition in Syria

Quoted in TIME.com.

Indeed, many feel that Clinton’s reorganization is too little too late. “The opposition Secretary Clinton is trying to unify has become largely irrelevant, even infusing it with elements from inside may not be sufficient,” says Ammar Abdulhamid, a Syrian exile who is active in the opposition in Washington. “Syria’s current fragmentation necessitates working with local groups, that is, the rebels and whatever political forces are coalescing around them.”

In announcing it the way she did, Clinton also alienated one of the few friends the U.S. has amongst the Syrian opposition, the SNC, which announced it would hold its own meeting just prior to the Doha gathering as a snub to the U.S. “The SNC will fight for its survival, many opportunists will fight for inclusion, seeing a window in Clinton’s announcement,” Abdulhamid says. “It’s going to be a free for all and a freakshow in Doha. The U.S. should have worked on this quietly.”

 

Doha’s Four Seasons Hotel Tea Lounge a painful exile for Syrians in Qatar

Quoted in The National

To Ammar Abdulhamid – a prominent opposition member in the United States who is adjunct fellow at the Foundation for Defence of Democracies – exile is the wrong place to look for Syrians around whose charisma, political ingenuity and force of intellect an opposition will somehow coalesce.

“Syria’s future leaders are in Syria,” he says. “The political process will be determined by Syrian actors, despite all the dabblers and the dabbling taking place.”

 

Rebels With a Cause, But Not Much Consensus

Syrian opposition fighters are committed to Bashar al-Assad’s ouster, but disagree on just about everything else.

BY AMMAR ABDULHAMID | OCTOBER 1, 2012

As President Bashar al-Assad’s forces disintegrate, the Syrian civil war is devolving into a battle between Sunni rebel groups and Alawite-dominated militias fighting in support of the old regime. This may increase the rebels’ chances of victory, but it also means that the work to rebuild Syria after Assad falls will be even more challenging. Continue reading

The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly About the Syrian Civil War

Interviewed by Barry Rubin, PJ Media

Ammar Abdulhamid may know more about Syria’s civil war than anyone else in the world. That’s no exaggeration. An pro-democratic oppositionist living abroad, Abdulhamid has functioned on a virtual 24/7 basis as the source of news and analysis about events within Syria, always trying to be honest and accurate in his assessments regardless of his own preferences. Barry Rubin, PJMedia Middle East editor, interviewed Abdulhamid on the latest developments and trends. Continue reading

After Assad: What’s Next for the Future of Syria?

Quoted in the Time:

If Syria is allowed to fracture, each ethnic group hunkering down, says Ammar Abdulhamid, an exiled Syria opposition leader in Washington, “it won’t be easy to put humpty dumpty back together again. It would take decades of instability and violence to sort itself out. And that is what we’re most worried about.”

How Secure Is the Assads Regime, Really?

To many observers of Syrian affairs, especially in the aftermath of the vaguely-worded report by Brammertz and in view of the growing alliance with Iran,the Assads regime must seem more secure than it has been in many months now, international criticism of its policies notwithstanding. Whether it is the Assads strategy that is working here or whether it is their luck that is holding, it doesn’t really matter, the end result is the same, the Assads seem practically untouchable. Continue reading