On Tuesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that Russia and the USA would set up an international conference on Syria by the end of this month. He’s optimistic that it’d involve both the Syrian government and opposition forces. At a meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov, Kerry said that the conference would aim at facilitating a solution to the Syrian crisis through political dialogue. Lavrov added that the Syrian government assured Russia that it’s ready to participate in the conference, saying, “But, of course, so far, these are just words that have yet to be transformed into actions”. He went to say that the Syrian opposition hasn’t commented on the proposal. So far, opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad have refused to sit down for talks with the régime in the past, saying that Assad’s removal is a non-negotiable issue. Lavrov pointed up that the conference would be a follow-up to last year’s international meeting in Genève that drafted a peace roadmap for Syria.
The communiqué passed in Genève by the UN Action Group on Syria, which includes Syria’s neighbours and the permanent members of the UN Security Council, proposed to start with the creation of a transitional government drawn both from the opposition and Assad’s administration. Both Kerry and Lavrov stressed that Russia and the USA support the Genève roadmap, seeing political dialogue as the only solution for Syria. Kerry said that the alternative is increasing violence, a humanitarian crisis, and the country’s disintegration.
Moscow and Washington have clashed over Syria in the past; the USA put the responsibility for the civil war on Assad’s régime, whilst Russia insisted that the opposition should share the blame for the conflict. Russia blocked several UN Security Council resolutions on Syria, saying that they were biased in favour of the opposition. The USA supported the Syrian opposition, providing the motley coalition of forces (which includes many radical Islamists) with non-lethal military equipment. Recently, a bill filed with the US Senate proposed the supply of weapons to the Syrian insurgents. Kerry said the bill’s fate depended on the American inquiry in progress into reports that the rebels used chemical weapons, but added the matter may become a moot point if the government and the opposition begin dialogue. More than 70,000 have died in the two-year-long present conflict in Syria, according to the latest UN estimates.
8 May 2013
Let’s not put too fine a face on this. The USA has woken up to the fact that Islamist radicals would benefit from the toppling of Assad. Besides that, Russia and China are adamant… NO MORE BOMBS! To put the kybosh on the idea of “intervention”, it’s unaffordable (there ain’t nuttin’ in Motha Hubbard’s cupboard, kids… Bush wasted it all on the adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan) and it’d destabilise the entire region (the Gulf States are most jittery on that score, and they’re American allies). Look carefully at:
Recently, a bill filed with the US Senate proposed the supply of weapons to the Syrian insurgents. Kerry said the bill’s fate depended on the American inquiry in progress into reports that the rebels used chemical weapons, but added the matter may become a moot point if the government and the opposition begin dialogue.
That is, Kerry’s given the US government a face-saving fig-leaf. The opposition will refuse to sit down with Assad… then, the USA will piously (and hypocritically) withdraw its former offer of arms. “They won’t sit down for peace talks… they’re terrorists intent on mayhem”. Let’s not be coy, the Boston bombing incident makes it politically impossible for any American régime to cooperate with any group that even looks like it might have Islamic militants within it. Any road, most of Obama’s rhetoric on Syria was election-year hogwash, not meant to be taken seriously by mature adults. Reflect on this… Wet Willy would’ve gotten the USA involved in a very sticky wicket just to placate the Religious Right troglodytes in the GOP. God IS in His Heaven… the Old Master does it again (just like when he defused the claptrap over Iran)… hey, anybody who still chain-smokes, backs Spartak, plays the guitar, goes white-water rafting, and cusses when he wants to can’t be all bad.