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Three Years After, Have the Syrians Accomplished What They Set out to Do?

Source : | 17 March 2014 |  Opinion | 404 views

Washington D.C. - As the Syrian uprising passes its third year with no resolution in sight, there is no doubt that everything has changed rapidly and radically since the first year of the uprising that erupted in Daraa on March 18, 2011.  

I recorded this conversation with two activists from Daraa to see how they view the results after three years of continuous struggle against the most dynastic dictatorship in the 21st century.

The following is an interview with two political activists:  Muhammad, an activist from Daraa now in exile in Saudi Arabia, and Salem, an activist also from Daraa who now lives in Jordan, who has a different perspective.

Muhammad: There is no revolution left on the ground. The people who led the uprising the first year are now dead or outside the country. What you see right know is kind of proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran inside Syria, and it is only the Syrian people who have paid the price of this war.

Salem:  It is definitely true that everything has changed on the ground, but the revolution is still moving ahead and we cannot just simply say it’s over because some mistakes happened from time to time…

Mohammed (interrupting): It’s not mistakes, it’s crimes and there is a huge difference between crimes and mistakes. What do you call “beheading,” or following activists and taking them out of the scene?

Salem: Ok, let’s examine the “crimes” as you are calling them. And there are people supporting [them] from outside the country. Does that mean Assad has become good and that we should forget what he has done?

Mohammed: Absolutely not. But you should distinguish here between fighting against Assad as something different from using the fight against Assad for your own political gain and using civilians as human shields to give Assad the pretext for the actions he is taking on the ground against cities and people.

Salem:  No way, he was killing us when we  were peaceful.

Muhammad:  But it was nothing like what it is happening today. Before, the victims who fell were in very low numbers, because, back then, Assad had no lawful reason nor any good argument to justify all the shooting and killing of peaceful protesters, so he was in a serious trouble. Let’s put this in a different perspective: during the peaceful time Assad was very careful with his killing. During this peaceful time there were less than 2000 victims. Man, we are talking today about 200,000 casualties and more than 7 million refugees. Do you consider this a victory?

Salem: No but going to arms was a forced situation. We needed to defend ourselves, but with no support from the outside wewere not going to make it.  Assad was going to crush the uprising.

Mohammed: I disagree with you. First we did not give the matter of peaceful protest the time it needed. Second, the revolution was hijacked by the interests of foreign regional powers. What is going on today is a tragedy that must stop.

Salem: I agree with you, but how?

Mohammed:  Through mobilizing the Syrian public. We need to stop the intervention of others and accomplish our own struggle based on our own interests, and get back to our moral obligations.  This will require work, honesty, and stopping all the criminals who entered the scene under the umbrella of the revolution.

Salem: You are delusional. You don’t know what you are talking about. This kind of regime understands only one language: the arms language.

Muhammad: Exactly! And that’s why we are losing. Only because we have been talking to Assad in the language that he understands best and in which he’s most professional.

On March 18, 2011, an uprising started in Southern Syria. The people called for Bashar Assad to step down and allow change. The Syrian regime responded to it with deadly force and full violence.  Since then more than 7 million Syrians have left Syria, and more than two hundred thousand have been killed.

Edited by Elisabeth Myers. Photo by AFP

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Morocco World News’ editorial policy

© Morocco World News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed

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