Sunday, October 23, 2005

"100% innocent!": Syria and OJ Simpson

100% not guilty! said OJ Simpson after being arrested for the savage murder of his wife.

"We are 100% innocent!" said Syrian dictator Bashar Assad after being accused of assassination by the UN.

The New York Times lays out the plot by which the Syrian dictator Assad masterminded the assassination of Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri.

The assassination of Hariri in February of 2005 sent shock waves through the region. Emboldened by democratic elections in Iraq, the people of Lebanon identified Syria as the culprit, and demanded the immediate withdrawal of the Syrians from their country.

The Syrian government began to tremble. For the strategy in going to war with Iraq in the spring of 2003 was not merely bring down Saddam Hussein. The strategy was to lay the foundation for democratic revolutions throughout the Middle East. No one feared that strategy more than dictator Assad of Syria, whose Baathist party was Saddam Hussein's closest ally.

Since the invasion of Iraq, Syria has played a double game, outwardly professing cooperation with the West while secretly allowing Syria to be a basing ground for the terrorists in Iraq. The administration has been slow to confront the Syrians with anything except diplomatic protests and polite requests for more help.

Now the UN's official report, accusing the Syrians of assassination has dealt a further blow the Syrian dictator. Syrian dissident Ammar Abdulhamid reports: "the Syrian regime has been on the verge of implosion for quite a while now, and it appears that many people are now taking notice of that."

The Syrians have been threatening Abdulhamid and other dissidents for months:

So, “do you want to be a hero, Ammar?” He asked. Why, “do you want to make me into one, General?”

Blogroll this brave man now.

Professor Josh Landis over at Syria Comment argues that the US is committed to a policy of regime change. If so, action on that policy is long overdue.

President Bush in his heroic inaugural address of January 2005 pledged this country to a forward strategy of democratization and freedom. In Syria, the time to act is now.