Cities are bombed and people are forced to leave their homes. On one side is Bashar al-Assad and the Baath regime, one of the most savage regimes in the world. On the other side are various armed groups that have a shadowy identity. In addition to the fact that these criminal groups have been infiltrated by the al-Qaeda terrorist organization, they are also involved in the regime’s continued killings, helping to terrorize the public.
While the regime is taking advantage of this situation and trying to mark its opponents as al-Qaeda terrorists, the true opposition is also guilty of disseminating misinformation from time to time, broadcasting incorrect data and misleading videos.
However, what really causes anxiety regarding those who have a dirty history and are trying to solve the crisis is the fact that they aren’t sincere.
Let’s have a look at the leading actors that allege that they are trying to solve the crisis: the US, France, England, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
Western countries are known for their dirty and exploitative histories. Most of the dictatorships in the Middle East are products of Western involvement in the region’s politics. All dictators, from Saddam Hussein to Hosni Mubarak, from the Assads to other dictators in the Gulf region, are the puppets of the US, France and England.
A couple of years ago Condoleezza Rice, then-secretary of state, confessed to this state of affairs and admitted that the US made a big mistake by supporting dictatorships. For years these countries were called moderate regimes. They are still described like this. The only reason for this is the fact that they are for the West. But they are not for the public.
We all know why the US recently entered Iraq and Afghanistan. So what is the conclusion? Two ruined countries later, the US still holds much power in the Gulf region. Does it keep its power to protect the public against dictatorial regimes? No, it doesn’t. On the contrary, the reason is to defend the regimes against the public. In other words, the US wants the dictatorships to remain.
What about France? The entire world knows what kind of an attitude France -- maybe one of the countries with the dirtiest and darkest histories -- maintained when the uprisings started in Tunisia. When the events kicked off, France blatantly offered help to Zine El Abidine Ben Ali if necessary, to keep him in power. France’s true reason for attacking Libya with England later came out, when France stepped in to get a share of oil.
Let’s consider Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the countries that, on the other hand, make a great effort and even demand an international intervention to oust Assad. Do they display a significant political difference from the Assad regime?
It is evident that the aim of these two countries isn’t taking sides with the public. Their aim is to spread wahabism and Salafism on one hand, and to become a subcontractor of the US, on the other. And most importantly, they aim to form a front against Iran.
Under these circumstances the solution to the Syria crisis is being delayed, as nobody is sincere.
As for the position of Turkey: within Turkish media and talk shows, the argument set forth is, “We wish Turkey had come to the table with Iran and Russia and sought a solution.”
“Coming to the table” sounds really nice but I wonder what kind of an agreement they would have come up with.
The attitude of Turkey is 180 degrees contrary to that of Iran and Russia. How could they reach an agreement under these circumstances? They discuss peace and cease-fires. But such empty rhetoric will not yield results, except to allow the al-Assad regime to gain more time and shed more blood.
The policy Turkey pursues on the Syria issue is a correct one in general terms, but it was a big mistake for Turkey to get involved by totally siding against the Assad regime. One significant factor that influenced Turkey’s stance was the fact that Turkey felt like a failure in Libya for getting involved so late.
In terms of Libya, Turkey mentioned diplomacy and reconciliation for a long time, but failed to act in a timely fashion, when the group led by France and England first took the initiative. Because of this, Turkey became involved in the issue late. Afterwards, in order to compensate for this situation, Turkey donated $300 million to the National Transitional Council of Libya.
The situation with which Libya was faced in the aftermath of the intervention really caused anxiety. If Syria is faced with a similar situation, this would mean a disaster for the Middle East. But unfortunately, the powers that played a leading role in Libya are now leading actors in Syria. In this manner, the means by which to solve the Syrian crisis have turned into a serious problem. Every day that passes without a solution means that danger is on the rise for the other countries in the region, especially Turkey.
The conclusion of the Friends of Syria meeting, to be held in İstanbul on April 2, will be very important. But it isn’t possible to come up with any conclusion in a meeting that China and Russia don’t attend. Turkey needs to push more for a solution by making Iran, as well as Russia and China, come to the table.