The Syrian uprising is now a full-blown civil war. As the conflict surges, the Assad government is constantly losing support, both from its nationals as well as on the international platforms. The violence has increased in the recent weeks, and both the rebels and the government seem unwilling to relent in the near future.
The opposition’s and rebels’ efforts to portray a united and strong leadership in Syria have been dismal as well as insufficient till now. As there are extending regional links being formed, the conflict has a sectarian hue to it. And with only a few defections among the higher rank of the government, the top structure of the government has been holding strong.
The Assad government is being supported by Iran and Lebanon, while the rebels have the backing of the Sunni Muslim states of Qatar, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. With an international slowdown going on, it seems probable that Syria is on the verge of a significant turning point that may prove to be historically important.
The international community has expressed its discontent over the situation by means of imposing several sanctions on Syria, which have further attributed to the country’s worsening economical condition. The Syrian president, Bashar al-Assad, has clearly stated in a recent interview that he does not think that a no-fly zone can ever be imposed on Syria. Further, he said that international pressure could do little to end the ongoing conflict in the country.
In September this year (2012), Iran’s foreign minister asked the Syrian president to resolve the civil war, stating that the solution to the 18-month long tension lies only within Syria and the Syrian family. In August of this year, the United Nations had withdrawn its observers from the country after the government and the rebel forces failed in implementing a ceasefire in April to which both the sides had expressed their consent. Lakhdar Brahimi, the new UN-Arab League envoy in Syria, visited the country in September and confessed that the increasing violence and conflict in Syria ‘posed a global danger.’
Major General Adnan Sillu, Syria’s chemical arsenal’s former chief, has been quoted by The Times that he felt the government might in due course use chemical weapons against general public. With the death toll increasing dramatically, it would be a horrific situation if such a thing happens.
Even if the Syrian President, Bashar al-Assad quits, his leaving the office would deem futile as he is only the leader of the war that is being fought by Syria’s Alawite community and other minority groups. In case of his resignation or flight, it is likely that some other leader would take up control in their hands and dictate terms.
The way the scenes are unfolding, the end does not seem near. However, whichever side the camel may turn eventually, the global threat that the ongoing Syrian crisis poses cannot be underestimated.