Sometimes Better the Devil You Know
by VICTOR SHARPE
September 15, 2012
According to 71-year-old French surgeon, Jacques Beres, who co-founded Doctors without Borders and who has recently returned to France from two weeks in the city of Aleppo, Syria's main commercial center, the rebels there are determined to usher in a worldwide Islamic caliphate:
"It's really something strange to see," he said. "They (the besieged residents) are directly saying that they aren't interested in Bashar al-Assad's fall, but are thinking about how to take power afterwards and set up an Islamic state with Shari'a law in order to become part of a hoped for worldwide Caliphate."
In the Arab world, where internecine slaughter is a routine and regular fact of life, the belief that fate transcends everything (or, as Muslims utter, "InshAllah" - it is Allah's will) is illustrative of this depressing conviction.
The following statement from an Israeli Arab source, who spoke about the slaughter in Syria to Israel National News on condition of anonymity, expresses it starkly:
"So what! So far, only 23,000 are dead. Assad's father killed even more - 40,000. It never bothered him in the slightest. This can go on for months. The Russians are involved, and Syria is their only gateway to the Middle East. Bashar al-Assad knows he cannot lose with their backing."
In the last few days, Bashar Assad's air force using attack helicopters has leveled entire blocks of residential apartment buildings in the town of Hanano. Large numbers of civilians have been killed there as Syrian army heavy artillery began shelling the town and in Aleppo itself, the main water supply has been destroyed.
And it is no surprise that the Iranian regime, Assad's ally, continues to send its Revolutionary Guards into Syria (most recently a further contingent of 150 Iranian officers) who joined earlier units in a murderous rampage against mostly civilians while operating on behalf of Syrian government forces.
But Bashar Assad insists that Al Qaeda terrorists and Islamists have infiltrated Syria and have been cooperating with the rebel forces. This may well be true.
Just as in Libya, the so-called rebels have predictably morphed into Islamist apparatchik's intent on creating a Sharia compliant Islamic republic, which they too hope will be wed into an Islamic Caliphate. And now the true but predictable face of these "rebels" is there for all to see as they gloat over the murdered US Ambassador and two marines - done to death on the eleventh anniversary of the Muslim atrocity perpetrated against America on 9/11.
It is too soon to tell if and when Assad will fall. But he may well survive, helped as he is by Russia and China in the Security Council.
What we could well see - some would submit as a near possibility - is that if he did fall from power the road would be open to an Islamist takeover such as happened in Egypt when President Obama betrayed Mubarak and ushered in a Muslim Brotherhood regime or when the European Union bombed Muammar Gaddafi.
And now we see - in a coordinated outrage - Egyptian Muslim mobs attacking the US embassy in Cairo even as Obama sends another $1 billion in US aid to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood regime.
According to the Syrian army general in charge of operations in west Aleppo:
"There are some Syrians from the north and the countryside near Aleppo (among the rebels), but many are foreigners - Chechens, Turks, Afghans, Libyans and Tunisians." He showed identity papers that appeared to be Turkish. "All these are Islamists fighting alongside the rebels," he added.
The general was contemptuous of Western, and particularly European Union, attitudes to the battles within Syria.
Those who fear what may come after the regime of Bashar Assad crumbles can find support in his words of disbelief at Western and European gullibility and naivety:
"Don't they understand that we are the last dam that is holding back the flood of Islamists in Europe," he asked. "What blindness."
If the Islamists wrest control of Syria it is more than likely they would continue to ally with the Iranian Mullahocracy just as Assad's secular regime has done. But then the question of Syria's chemical and biological arsenal becomes paramount as they could fall into the hands of Hezb'Allah in Lebanon or Al Qaida or Palestinian terrorist gangs, with terrifying implications for the Middle East, Europe and the US.
According to diplomatic sources quoted in an interview published in the Kuwaiti Al-Rai newspaper, the Assad regime is moving its arsenal to the Mediterranean port city of Tartus. According to the reports, Syria is believed to possess "several tons" of chemical weapons-grade material, including Sarin gas.
In a recent Washington Post report, these weapons are apparently stored in some 20 separate sites around Syria, but there may well be many other sites whose whereabouts are as yet unknown.
Russia and North Korea are two countries which have been accused of helping develop Syria's deadly chemical and biological tipped missile arsenal whose predictable target is Israel.
But it was also reported in the Debka Intelligence file on September 6, 2012 that US personnel are training the rebels from areas adjacent to the Turkish-Syrian border. This may turn out to be a grave tactical error as the battles taking place are also an ongoing tribal, clan related and religious conflict.
These intra-communal struggles have raged intermittently for centuries between Sunni and Shia Muslims, Alawites, Turks, Kurds, Circassians and Christians.
Indeed Christians, who make up 10% of the Syrian population, are now fleeing Syria for Lebanon and beyond. Sunnis hate them and are already targeting churches - just as Sunnis are doing against the Christian Copts in Muslim Brotherhood Egypt - and the goal may well be the expulsion of all Christians from an Islamized Syria.
Any western intervention would thus drag the West into an endless and blood soaked morass. Yet Britain and France are continuing to aid the same rebels with war material.
The fear now is that if Assad believes that the US and the European Union are adding greatly to the pressure upon him to step down, he will unleash his deadly chemical and biological tipped missiles at Israeli cities and civilian targets thus ushering in a conflagration that has no limit.
The Syrian dictator, Basher al-Assad, is a typical product of a failed Arab and Muslim society in which the worst of the worst rise through terror and barbarism to the top of the heap and assume bloody and repressive control.
But with his demise, a hideous Pandora's Box may well open as Islamists with their inhuman ideology wrapped in a religion take power and befoul the entire region and the world.
Sad as it is to even suggest allowing Assad to remain in power, the alternative may be too frightful to contemplate.
Sometimes it is better the devil you know.
Victor Sharpe is a freelance writer and author of several books including The Blue Hour, a collection of short stories, and Volumes One and Two of Politicide: The attempted murder of the Jewish state.