Syria Promises Response to Arab League Plan, Threatens ‘Volcano’ if Attacked

Syria said it would reply Monday to the proposal of the Arab League for ending the violence in that country.

Aljazera has video.

On Sunday, an interview appeared in the Telegraph with President Bashar al-Assad of Syria.

He said, “Syria is the hub now in this region . . . It is the fault line, and if you play with the ground you will cause an earthquake … Do you want to see another Afghanistan, or tens of Afghanistans?” He added, “Any problem in Syria will burn the whole region. If the plan is to divide Syria, that is to divide the whole region.”

Aljazeera Arabic reports on the threat:

There is something to Al-Assad’s sinister warning. If Syria went the way of Libya, it would likely be regionalized. Jordanian clans have ties to those in Deraa. Sunni and Shiite Iraqis have a stake in the outcome. Turkey and Iran have serious interests in Syria. It really could be a volcano. The question is whether it is worth it to risk such a parlous outcome. Many Syrians obviously think it is.

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6 Responses

  1. What I find interesting is the media coverage, even by NPR, iin that there are daily breathless reports on this conflict with Assad’s arguements dismissed, while the conflict in Bahrain is ignored and the same arguments used by Assad are to infer interference by Iran and subsequent destabilization of Saudi Arabia in that country.

    I’ve learned after watching the media for years, whenever NPR is producing highly polished reports on foreign affairs on a daily basis, special interest propagandists are at work.

    • while the conflict in Bahrain is ignored

      The conflict in Syria has killed thousands just in the past couple of months.

      The “conflict” in Bahrain has killed dozens in about 3/4 of a year.

      I don’t think we have to scout about for dark conspiracies to explain why the Syrian crisis is getting more press.

  2. (the links to the piece below are on my blog: link to tinyurl.com)

    There has been and will be a lot said about the content of Bashar Al-Asad’s latest interview with Russian TV and the Telegraph piece too, especially with regard to his comments on the earthquake that awaits if intervention takes place. But he had made precisely this kind of threat, perhaps more tacitly, in his previous interviews on Syrian TV and it would be well-known to all policy makers. These recent interactions by the regime with ‘Western’ journalists, even with the likes of Robert Fisk as shown in his latest, reflect Syria’s change in media policy of late – control of the message as or more crucial as/than levelling threats, re. both the more sympathetic Russian media and hostile Western sources.

    I haven’t seen the outrageous Reem Haddad about on TV lately and it seems as rather than seeing Westerners smuggled in from Lebanon, the regime wants to see if it can create that ‘balance’ that may earn it some space for its ‘side’ of the story to be told.

    Bashar’s interview was pretty lousy and boring though, and it seems Hassan Nasrallah does a much better job of articulating a defence of Syria, although his words were clearly directed at a sympathetic Arab audience. (I do agree with Hamid Dabashi that Hizbullah’s hypocricy has been exposed here, but I use the word better to mean it will convince or solidify existing convictions of many, and presents itself as coherent). One thing I wish As’ad Abu Khalil dealt with in depth in his coverage of Nasrallah’s speech was the argument that the majority of the population still support the regime, regardless of how grotesque it is. This, in Nasrallah’s opinion, makes it a totally different picture from Libya, Yemen, Bahrain etc. where such support for the regime is not in place.

    In any case, does this change of tack from the Syrian regime come from a position of strength or weakness? Will the threats threaten and the charming charm?

  3. The entire point of this is to weaken Syria so Israel can safely attack Hizballah in the Bekaa Valley. Also to break up Syria, as Assad clearly understands, just as Iraq was broken up and weakened.

    The goal is to set the stage for war with Iran.

    Today we learn from the New York Times that the US is going to take the troops out of Iraq and build up its ground and naval and air presence in the Gulf, forming according to a Guardian article a “mini-NATO” around the Gulf states.

    All of this is a clear buildup to a war with Iran.

  4. A year ago 44 Christians were massacred in a church in Iraq. Fear of this kind of violence is why many Syrian Christians support Assad. As bad as things have been in Syria, they could be made worse by careless intervention.
    I don’t understand the media’s obsession with Syria. In 2009, twenty thousand Tamils wre killed in Sri Lanka, and the media snoozed. There are troubles in numerous places, but the big media outlets don’t want to overburden us with information.

  5. US politicians today remind me of Cato the Elder who usually finished his speeches on any subject in the Roman Senate with the phrase: “Furthermore, it is my opinion that Carthage must be destroyed”

    Today it is:

    Iran delenda est.

    Yesterday it was Germany, Japan, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq ++++++

    What will be delenda next time?

    Cuba?

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