February 16, 2012

Tribal Bonds Give Arabs an Edge in Syria

Hassan Hassan, The National

AP Photo

Much has been said about the Gulf states' interest in regime change in Syria to steer Damascus away from Tehran and bolster their regional standing. The prevailing narrative is that Syria is a Sunni-majority country and will therefore ally itself with Gulf Sunni Arabs after the overthrow of the Baathist regime. But such an alliance is not a surety. Turkey, a Sunni-majority country and a neighbour, has established strong business relations with the commercial cities of Aleppo and Damascus and hosts prominent opposition figures; it is also bound to seek and assert influence in Syria.

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February 12, 2012
Pressuring Russia & China Is Key to Ousting Assad
Suzanne Nossel, TNR
By deciding to stand with the Syrian people, these governments have isolated Russia and China, training an uneasy spotlight on what may be behind the vetoes. Their lone stance underscores that even those most staunchly... more ››
February 12, 2012
Is Assad Preparing an Alawite Mini-State?
Michael Young, NOW Lebanon
The regime from the outset appeared to be working on two fronts simultaneously: paving the way for a prospective communal fallback plan by securing the northern and southern hinges of the Alawite area, at Kfar Kalakh and Jisr... more ››
February 11, 2012
Let's Not Make Things Worse in Syria
Daniel Byman, Washington Post
There are many ways a Western intervention could make things much worse in Syria. more ››
February 12, 2012
Syrian Rebels Plot Their Next Moves
Rania Abouzeid, Time
While the civil war in Syria has been, for the most part, fearsomely asymmetrical to the regime's advantage, the government has been hit by shadowy elements, including the assassination of a general in Damascus on Saturday and... more ››
February 12, 2012
U.S. Must Avoid the Syria Trap
Los Angeles Times
Military action could enmesh the U.S. in a civil war. Diplomacy is the best option. more ››