Wretched Syria – Part II

BY Tariq Mushtaq

A synonym for hell

The Russian military warned the US against striking the Syrian army, stressing that Russian air defense weapons in Syria stand ready to fend off any attack. The range of Russian S-300 and S-400 air defense missile systems would “surprise” any country operating its aircraft over Syria

The United States, since long, is involved in the obliteration of international peace, especially his involvement in Middle East region is disgusted and getting alarming and more horrible with every passing day.

The American establishment and intelligence agencies too crookedly twisted Muslims against Muslims, to fight and kill each other. It took them forty years to achieve this target.

Way back in 1973, when all the Arab countries were fighting jointly against Israel, the American intelligence agencies out of some unknown fear started forming strategy to make Muslims fight against Muslims. Differences between the two main factions were managed to grow to a level of “no return”. In the first phase, they managed to kill Saudi Ruler, Shah Faisal bin Abdul Aziz in 1975, who was considered the strongest pillar of the Muslim alliance. Disturbance in Pakistani politics, ousting and then “managing murder” of ZA Bhutto in 1979, overthrowing and castigation of Shah of Iran was also a conspiracy and a step against the Muslim alliance. These three were considered the strongest pillars of the Islamic Alliance. Basically, all this was designed for the safe existence of Israel.

Now, Muslims are fighting against Muslims. Fighting for President Bashar al-Assad are Syrian soldiers, the Hezbollah militant group from Lebanon, and other Shi’a militias from Iraq and elsewhere. They receive support from Iran and Russia, which has been launching air strikes on insurgent communities.

On the other side is a patchwork of Sunni rebel militias, including some extremists, who have received support from the United States, Turkey and Persian Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Nearly six years into the war, both sides have resorted to siege tactics, surrounding communities populated by their foes and bombarding them.

On 19 December 2016, Reuters reported that convoys of evacuees traveled from a rebel-held area of Aleppo and from two Shi’a villages besieged by insurgents after a days-long stand-off.

Dozens of buses carrying thousands of people from Aleppo’s tiny rebel zone reached insurgent areas to the west of the city, according to a United Nations official and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group.

At the same time, 10 buses left the Shi’a Muslim villages of al-Foua and Kefraya, north of Idlib, for government lines in Aleppo.

The evacuation of civilians, including wounded people, from the two villages which have been besieged by rebels for years, was a condition for the Syrian army and its allies to allow thousands of fighters and civilians trapped in Aleppo to depart.

On 18 December 2016, some of the buses sent to al-Foua and Kefraya to carry evacuees out were attacked and torched by armed men who shouted “Allah O Akbar” and brandished their weapons in front of the burning vehicles. It was a very sad situation, killing brothers and shouting “Allah O Akbar”.

That incident threatened to derail the evacuations, the result of intense negotiations between Russia, the main supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and Turkey, which backs some large rebel groups.

At stake is the fate of thousands of people still stuck in the last rebel bastion in Aleppo after a series of sudden advances by the Syrian army and allied Shi’a militias under an intense bombardment that pulverised large sections of the city.

They have been waiting for the chance to leave Aleppo since the ceasefire and evacuation deal was agreed. The weather in Aleppo has been wet and very cold and there is little shelter and few services in the tiny rebel zone.

Assad is backed in the war by Russian air power and Shi’a militias including Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement and Iraq’s Harakat al-Nujaba. The mostly Sunni rebels include groups supported by Turkey, the United States and Gulf monarchies.

For four years the city was split between a rebel-held eastern sector and the government-held western districts. During the summer, the army and its allies managed to besiege the rebel sector before using intense bombardment and ground assaults to retake it in recent months.

A Reuters reporter who visited recaptured districts of Aleppo in recent days saw large swathes reduced to ruins, with rubble and other debris clogging the streets and sections of the famous Old City all but destroyed. Earlier, the removal of residents from besieged communities in Syria bogged down again after rebels opposed to the agreement set fire to buses that were supposed to carry evacuees, while Security Council diplomats signaled that they had reached a compromise deal to send United Nations monitors to oversee the evacuations.

The feuding in Syria and at the United Nations underlined the complexity of the war in Syria, where coalitions of forces on the ground receive support from a range of opposing backers whose agendas clash.

At the United Nations, Russia threatened to block a Security Council resolution, drafted by France, that called for sending international observers to Aleppo. But after more than three hours of closed-door negotiations, diplomats emerged from the Council chambers saying that they had reached a compromise and that they would vote on it.

The deal would send United Nations monitors to observe the evacuation process after consultations with “interested parties,” which means that observers could in theory be turned down by soldiers and militias on the ground. Senior United Nations officials have repeatedly said that they have sought Syrian government permission to be present during the evacuation process, and that they have not received it.

This would give the tools to avoid another Srebrenica, the massacre of civilians in that besieged city in Bosnia in the Balkans war over 20 years ago. The measure demands that the warring parties provide these monitors with safe, immediate and unimpeded access.

Earlier in the day, before walking into negotiations, Vitaly I. Churkin, the Russian ambassador, had said United Nations staff members should not be told to “go wander around the ruins of Aleppo without proper preparation.” Mr Churkin told reporters on the way into the Security Council chambers: “It has disaster written all over it. This is a provocation.” He declined to answer questions after the consultations had wrapped up.

There are hundreds of United Nations civilian staff members stationed in government-held cities in Syria who could be deployed as monitors, the United Nations said. At the moment, only monitors from the International Committee of the Red Cross and their local partners with the Syrian Arab Red Crescent are on the ground. They do not report to the Security Council.

Carrying out the evacuations requires the cooperation not just of foreign powers but also of the loose coalitions of fighters in Syria.

Earlier, Russia’s parliament ratified a treaty with Syria that allows Russian troops to stay indefinitely in the Middle-East country, a show of support for embattled Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The development came against the backdrop of a Syrian army onslaught on the rebel-held eastern part of the city of Aleppo in northern Syria, which has been backed by Russian warplanes. Since the collapse of a US-Russia-brokered cease-fire last month, ties between Moscow and Washington have grown even more strained.

Russia’s air campaign in Syria, launched a year ago, has reversed the tide of the war and helped Assad’s forces regain some key ground. Moscow says the goal of its military operation is to assist the Syrian army in the fight against terrorism. It rejects accusations of targeting civilians.

Lawmakers in the Kremlin-controlled State Duma voted unanimously to approve the deal, which allows Russia to keep its forces at the Hemeimeem air base in Syria’s coastal province of Latakia, Assad’s Alawite heartland, for as long as it wants. The deal was signed in August 2015 in Damascus, a month before the Russian air campaign began.

Russia also has a naval base in Syria’s port of Tartus, the only such outpost outside the former Soviet Union. That base is not covered by the treaty, and some lawmakers say it could be the subject of a separate deal.

The Russian military warned the US against striking the Syrian army, stressing that Russian air defense weapons in Syria stand ready to fend off any attack. The range of Russian S-300 and S-400 air defense missile systems would “surprise” any country operating its aircraft over Syria.

Syria’s government depends on an array of foreign militias, elite Iranian fighters, as well as Russian military intelligence and air power to maintain its fight against the rebels, who also rely on foreign fighters.

How can Syria come out of the present destructive turmoil created by the chess game of the super powers? The only possible way is to divide Syria into two parts, one lead by Bashar al Assad and the other by the Sunni Muslims.

George W Bush had illegally invaded Iraq that triggered the whole destruction of the country. Obama criminally implicated Syria into civil war, Yemen is next in the row, and there’s no court on earth to punish these monsters.

An Islamic forum like “United Nations” is essentially needed, perhaps Pakistan can play a vital role to stop this blood shed that has engulfed the Muslim world. The present situation is a big threat for regional peace, but Muslim rulers have kept their eyes closed against for their personal gains or enmity or to keep their international masters happy. And where is humanity as claimed by the West? Humanity is in deep sleep somewhere in the mountains, because she is under custody of so called “Humanity Monsters”.

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