Can Al-Assad be like Saleh?
The New York Times revealed a plan that shows that the US President Barack Obama is seeking to remove Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad from power similar to what happened in Yemen, in an attempt to stop the blood bath in Syria that has been taking place for more than a year. But Syria is not Yemen, so will this work?
Obama’s plan requires political negotiations in Syria that would satisfy the opposition by resigning the president while keeping some of the Assad regime in power. It allows the transfer of power in the same way that moved the Yemeni ousted president Ali Abdullah Saleh.
The plan’s success depends on Russia, which is described as one of the strongest allies to the Syrian regime. Moscow had previously prevented any international sanctions on the Syrian regime, through using the Veto in the UN Security Council. Russia stood against any tough sanctions on the Al-Assad regime for fear that it would force the Syrian president to fall, and thus face a similar fate as the Libyan Colonel Mummar Gaddafi, who was killed, or the Egyptian Ousted President Hosni Mubarak, who is imprisoned and facing trial.
The New York Times also pointed out that there is an international pressure on Russia to force it to use its influence to oust Assad, due to the continued killings in Syria, like the attack on the town of Hula Homs Syria, which killed more than ninety people. Officials in the American administration said that Obama will announce the US plan along with the Russian President Vladimir Putin by the coming month, during the first meeting between the two presidents since Putin assumed presidency on the 7th of May.
The delay in resolving the situation in Syria, makes the solution very expensive, maybe more than any part can afford. In the Syrian case we’re not talking about the president’s son, his nephews and a group of his family like Yemen, but we’re talking about a significant number of military leaders at all levels, between one hundred to one-hundred thousand at the very least. They are all involved in the people’s bloodshed and won’t accept the resignation of Al-Assad to face an unknown fate.
This huge number is much bigger than any immunity can cover, and we also should not forget the different players who have deep interests with the current regime, especially Iran. Russia might prefer the transfer of power under its supervision, but it’s really important that Al-Assad won’t just use the proposal to gain more time, so any approach should be considered carefully before making any step forward.