|Written by Aldo Sauda y Sara Ajliakin|
|Sunday, 01 September 2013 21:25|
Once again, heaps of corpses of Syrian civilians filled the news of the week. The power of the images, especially the high proportion of children among the dead, caused an impact on the world. The lungs of the small victims, with low capacity of abortion of oxygen made them easy prey of chemical weapons of dictator Bashar Al Assad.
On August 21, the rebel zones of Damascus were victims of the most brutal gas attack in the last 25 years. Such brutality has never been seen since the crimes committed by the Iraqi dictators, Saddam Hussein against the Kurds. This is not the first time that the Syrian dictatorship uses toxics against their own population but they have not yet been used in such a generalised manner in urban areas. Faced with the crisis spawned by the massacre, the Syrian dictator tried to appear disassociated from the crime. After all this could cost him the power.
Materially, Assad’s arguments that rebels bombed themselves just do not hold up. The amount of missiles as well as their uniform character and serial numbers show that these weapons could not be the outcome of the rebels’ handcrafted production as the official press of the government claims.
Additionally, there is the fact that the local guerrillas of the region of Greater Damascus are mainly local inhabitants. Unlike the northern region of the country, there are few ultra radical Islamists from outside the community. The military strategy of these fighters consists in the quest of support from their social grassroots, many of who have relatives among the rebels. The idea that they might bomb their own families with lethal gas can be sited not so much within the rational scope of logic scope as with the conspirator theories.
The arguments spread by some that the attack is senseless, is also false. Contrary to what Assad claims, the regime has had few significant victories in the country. In recent weeks, one of the main air bases of the dictatorship in the northern region of Syria fell under the control of the rebels and so opened the gates for Aleppo to be totally liberated by the forces of the Revolution. There were some of Assad’s victories in the central region of the country but they only occurred because of the direct intervention of the dictator’s allies from abroad, such as Hezbollah, Lebanese militia, and armed Iraqi groups – both acting with the logistic support from Iran.
In the Damascus region, most important arena of the war, the regime has been losing grounds constantly, especially in the zones attacked by gas. These regions have suffered intensive bombings during the entire last month, mainly after the attacks with gas on the 21st. Even with the heavy intervention of the armed forces of the dictatorship in the capital city, there is a tendency towards territorial unification of the different zones controlled by the Syrian guerrilla. To sum up, from the military point of view, Assad has plenty of good reasons for wanting to poison the rebels.
The political argument quoted by the dictator, may be regarded as more solid. He should not be interested in joining the whole world against his barbarism. Gas attacks, according to the supporters of the regime, would backfire. This argument is logical, but it is fragile. It is a well known fact that since the beginning of the war, Bashar Al Assad has been gradually losing control over his army and his information service. Increasingly dependant on paramilitary militias (“shabiha) and foreign troops, the hierarchy of the national military HQ has all but lost its meaning.
Even if Assad did not personally command the attack, he is directly responsible for it. The “military anarchy” reigning today in Syria and the end of joint and disciplined chain of command that responds to the Head of State was a political option of the regime to confront the popular uprising. Regardless of whether Assad was personally involved in the massacre, there can be no doubt that the gas raid was the work of his regime.
Opening the gates of hell
Assad’s crime is not restricted to the casualties of his chemical attack; it has another dimension as well. Assad is also directly liable for getting American and European imperialisms is likely to bomb his country. While Americans have been delivering speeches throughout the recent period of time for the fall of Assad, ever since May 2013, they have repeatedly intended – together with the Russian regime – to arrange a negotiated solution for the confrontation. American sponsorship of the alleged Geneva conference never stepped out of the role: it was an attempt by the world’s powers to solve from the summit the political problems of the country. However Geneva was a failure, not because the imperialist powers wanted it to tail by merely because Assad refused to assume any commitment with the opposition.
The reason for which Americans do not want the dictator to fall is simple. A future free Syria is a greater jeopardy for their strategic interests that a Syria weakened by the bloodbath of a constant civil war.
The words of imperialism
The anti-Assad American discourse in the early stage of the revolution pretended to remain within the scope of spoken words. But in international politics words have their weight. On August 12th, in the belief that Assad would not challenge him, Obama announced that if the regime used chemical weapons, they will have crossed a “red line” delimited by him. Even so, this “red line” was constantly flexibilized to suit the demands of the dictator. On the 19th March 2013 he used chemical weapons against the revolutionaries in the north of the country; American pretended that they had seen nothing. These attacks were duly documented by international organisms, but Washington hid behind technicalities so as not to have to challenge the dictator. According to White House, there were merely some “indications” of the crime but no evidence.
In spite of all the efforts, American flexibility with Assad has its limitations. Having massively bombed his capital city with chemical weapons, for all practical purposes the dictator disobeyed his master. No problem if you wish to drop bombs far from camera lenses, but this latest Syrian attack crossed the limits allowed by Obama.
No to imperialist intervention
The crimes of the dictator opened the gates for imperialist intervention in Syria. And yet this intervention has little to do with the popular revolution that has been underway in the country for the past two years and half. Americans will attack Assad in order not to overthrow him but to maintain their reputation of “policeman” in the region and to boost war industry. The death merchants, fundamental as they are for American capitalism, make good profit with bloodshed.
Public statements of the USA emphasize that any measure will be an answer to the use of chemical weapons, however, it is no support for the military camp of the rebels. While they are preparing the attack, Americans are still ready to negotiate a solution for the civil war that would imply an agreement between both sides but without the figure of Assad in the presidency of the nation. By means of the bombs, they want to make the Syrian regime to hand over the ring so as to save the finger.
American bombs will not mitigate the grief caused by Assad on to his people; they will make it more intense. Americans can destroy the dictator’s air force and some military structures of the regime from the air, but not the militias such as “shabiha”, main culprits of the murder of oppositionists against the regime in the country will remain unhurt. The same think can be said of Assad’s artillery. The same stands true for Assad’s artillery. American proposal to destroy the dictator’s tanks stationed in the urban centres. Unless Americans are prepared to destroy entire neighbourhoods, something that would cause much more pain than relief for the people, artillery of the regime will not be eliminated.
In order to defeat the tyrant without annihilating the country, it is necessary to arm the rebels. Not surprisingly at all, imperialism has given no signals of willingness to do so.
More than ever, it is necessary to make our standpoint of support for the Revolution clear, as well as support for the weapons for the rebels and firm opposition against imperialist intervention in the country. Topple Assad, yes; destroy Damascus from the air, no. People’s uprising for democracy and social justice is surrounded by enemies: from Stalinism to imperialism and Islamic fanatics, all together against the struggle of Syrian people. More than ever there is task pose for the international working class: proclaim loudly: Long live the Revolution! No to imperialist attack! Arms, not bombs!