( Published in World Tribune )
Over a hundred people, most of them children and women were bayoneted to a slow, systematic and horrific death by pro-Governmental forces in the Syrian city of Houla, a few days back. According to the UN Monitors, fewer than twenty people died from shelling, rest was all summarily executed by pro-Assad militia. The Assad government obviously denied that, and even though there is no reason to trust the Syrian Government as the voice of reason, truthfulness and democracy, the motive behind this brutality indeed seemed a bit shaky. What would the Government achieve by killing children, other than more isolation? Surely the planners of the Syrian Government are not that naïve to try to intimidate a whole sect with this brutality of slow torturous death. They could have just bombed them, and blame that on Al Qaeda. Was it then really a false flag operation by Jihadi elements among the revolutionaries? One can’t be hundred percent sure anymore that the revolutionaries are just peaceful protesters, after the Damascus bombing a few weeks back. The photos of tattered blood soaked body parts was signature Al Qaeda, and it was confirmed too after a few days. The brutal Assad was crooked enough to hijack the victim approach immediately. It is all very messed up on the ground, and no right minded analyst would try to predict accurately as to what is exactly happening, with the lines getting increasingly blurred, and the battle lines increasingly widened. Meanwhile, as civilians continue to be butchered by one side or the other, and the instability spreading to Lebanon, time is running out before it spreads to Gaza and forcing Israel to act, thereby bringing in a whole new equation.
For all that we know, diplomacy and multilateralism is failing in Syria. Kofi Annan did even worse than what he managed during his tenure in Rwanda and Balkans, and Susan Rice’s storming out after Russian Veto, for all the rage it signified, is almost forgotten. So, how would a planner or a mediator with Realist leanings try to work out from this situation? Here’s a thought. Invite Russian and Chinese peacekeepers in Syria. Better, invite both the countries. Let their boots be on ground this time. Before you discard me as a raving lunatic, here’re the reasons why. Continue reading