The Arab Awakening
"To Democratise is
This month we lead with the above insight from
Dmitri Tremin, Director of the Carnegie Moscow
Center, on the events in the Arab Awakening, which
regrettably also reflects our view. This is based
on the fact that for eight years we have been
producing monthly analytical reports on SYRIA.
This March 1st issue is no.97.
We have reports on all of the following countries
involved in the 'Arab Awakening':
Syria, Libya, Egypt, Turkey,
Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Iraq - and
Iran - although the
latter is neither Arab, nor in revolt, but always
things are happening there!
We also take a look at 'The
Arab League' in the context of its role and
qualifications for democratising Syria. We analyse
the credentials for this of the League's members -
sadly, it is apparent that it's a poor joke.
'Newnations' are out of step it seems, with much
of the western media and the foreign ministers of
the US, France and UK, who call for al Assad to
resign and stand down as his country’s president.
We ask in favour of whom?
It's a fair question isn’t it: On which Arab
country should a made-over Syria model itself?
We quote the BBC's excellent "Guide to the Syrian
Opposition," showing that there are at least four
distinct rebel groups with leaderships who cannot
agree on uniting, or on anything much at all.
This, even after the rather embarrassing
conference in Tunisia, where 'statespersons'
declaimed, and condemned, demonstrating their
Our take is that this is a full-on civil war,
nothing less - but still not in every part of the
country. The capital Damascus, apart from certain
suburbs appears to be pro-Assad. The largest city,
The powers have taken sides, we suspect, because
for the US; UK; France; Turkey, it's a great
opportunity to stick it to Iran, and to perhaps
separate them from their only ally. How
embarrassing it must be to find that they and al
Qaeda are on the same side and share the same
objective, to overthrow this secular government
and restore the only other option: Sunni
There is a lot to cover with the MENA states, and
perhaps it isn't everybody's area of interest. So,
our OVERVIEW this month allows for readers who
want to follow the Russian election, due on Sunday
next, 4th March, to go directly to
Russia, as well as
followers of events in:
India, North Korea, Philippines, Taiwan, Vietnam,
Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Bosnia, Serbia
We decided editorially years ago, that apart
from Romania and Bulgaria, nations accepted into
the EU had achieved the democracy we had hoped for
them. We would no longer consider them to be 'in
transition'…but then Hungary’s bad behaviour
demanded some attention.