Syria, an exception?

The world is watching while Syria is burning. The Arab Spring that started in Tunisia on 18 December 2010 with Mohamed Bouazizi’s self-immolation has seen to the change in government in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. The self styled Brother Leader was captured and killed by opposition forces, largely with the aid of the US and France.

Now the Syrian people have been on this path for more than a year – to be free from what they consider the repressive regime of Al-Assad but despite the brutal force that the state is using to crush the opposition, none of the world powers have come to the aid of the people of this country to stop the killing, stop the war.

I frequently ask myself where the US is on this issue. A fair argument can be made by the US that this is not its war. Added to this, the US can also say that Syria is a sovereign nation that should solve its problems by itself. However, lest we forget, it was Ben Parker, Spiderman’s (Peter Parker) great uncle that succinctly define the responsibilities of power to the world in his saying that “With great power comes great responsibilities”. The size of responsibility that one carries is directly proportional to the powers that one wields, and the US wields great powers in our today’s world.

The US cannot continue to stand aloof and watch as thousands are being sent to their early grave. Many co-inhabitants of this planet earth see the inaction of the US as deplorable and sometimes could be described as the ultimate height of irresponsibility. Others ask whether an intervention in Syria by the US has been discussed on the investment analysis table and a conclusion made that there is not enough oil to guarantee a decent return on investment for the US.

The argument that China and Russia should take the lead on this one, as they are the one that have consistently been blocking the security council from acting, is weak and absolutely an excuse for inaction. Someone should help me to jiggle my memory of where these two nations have ever acted to interfere in cases of gross abuse of human rights to life in the world, I bet the answer is never. Whatever the issue is, the world is watching and the world considers the US as the only nation that is bequeathed with the resources to stop the genocide that Syria is fast becoming.

Let it be known that if the US doesn’t act and Syria goes down in history as a tyrant and despotic nation where the people are repressed continually, the US will have no moral grounds to preach democracy to anyone in the world. Maybe it would preach it but the world will not buy the thrash that such would be considered to be. The blood of those opposed to the ongoing repression of opposing views by the Bashir government would ever remain as a memory to our collective psyche – we can’t just choose to act only when it is convenient. We must ALWAYS act when the fundamentals of human freedom is being abused anywhere on this planet.

Will someone nudge our dear President Obama and his people to act?

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