Bashar al-Assad
President of Syria
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Bashar al-Assad (born 11 September, 1965) has been president of the Syrian Arab Republic since 2000.
I'm not a puppet. I wasn't made by the west to go to the west or any other country. I'm Syrian. I'm made in Syria. I have to live in Syria and die in Syria.
Quotes
Whatever Amos or any other official or any organization say something against us doesn't mean it's real. We have to verify what they say and is it the part of propaganda? is it politicized? or what...
[The Jews] tried to kill the principles of all religions with the same mentality in which they betrayed Jesus Christ and the same way they tried to betray and kill the Prophet Muhammad.
As quoted in "The disappearance of the Jews", The Economist (May 10, 2001)
There is no such things as "Islamic terrorism," because terrorism differs from Islam. There's just terrorism, not Islamic terrorism. But the term "Islamic terrorism" has become widespread.
"If Sanctions Are Imposed on Syria, the Entire World Will Pay the Price", MEMRI (Dec. 2005)
They are not my forces. They are military forces that belong to the government.… I don't own them. I am president. I don't own the country so they are not my forces.
Interview with Barbara Walters (7 Dec. 2011) on the military escalation of the Syrian conflict
The army is engaged in a crucial and heroic battle... on which the destiny of the nation and its people rests. The enemy is among us today, using agents to destabilise the country, the security of its citizens... and continues to exhaust our economic and scientific resources. They (the enemy) wanted to deprive the people of their national decision... but they were astonished to see these proud people, who confronted their plans and defeated them. You men of the country... you have demonstrated, in dealing with the war waged against our country by the terrorist gangs, that you possess an iron will and a keen awareness. Our military remains the backbone of the motherland.
"Syria Army in Crucial and Heroic Battle says Bashar Al Assad", Daily Telegraph (1 August 2012)
I'm not a puppet. I wasn't made by the west to go to the west or any other country. I'm Syrian. I'm made in Syria. I have to live in Syria and die in Syria.
Interview with RT, (November 2012)
[Enemies of Syria] are the enemies of the people and the enemies of God. And the enemies of God will go to hell.
As quoted by Holly Yan et. al. Al-Assad touts plan for resolution, says enemies of Syria 'will go to hell', CNN (Jan. 17, 2013)
We are facing an external attack against us, which is more dangerous than any other previous wars... We are dealing with those who are extremists, who only know the language of killing and criminality.
As quoted by Holly Yan et. al. Al-Assad touts plan for resolution, says enemies of Syria 'will go to hell', CNN (Jan. 17, 2013)
With every treacherous shell that had fallen, the enemies’ hopes would grow that Aleppo would become another Aleppo, one that never existed throughout history, an Aleppo that does not constitute with its twin Damascus the wings by which the homeland soars; rather an Aleppo whose people would stand with traitors in front of masters, kneeling and prostrating themselves before them, begging for a few dollars and much disgrace. That was in their dreams; but in our real world, with every shell that fell, fear fell and the will to challenge grew. With every martyr, nationalist spirit grew and faith in the homeland became stronger. In our real world, it remained the real Aleppo, the Aleppo of history, nobility, and authenticity. And because it is so, its people did not settle for steadfastness just in the sense of bearing of pain and suffering and acceptance of the status quo; but rather in the sense of work and production that persisted throughout the years of the siege despite the conditions that contradict any economic sense.
Assad Says Aleppo Had to Pay a Great Price, The Syrian Observer (Feb. 19, 2020)
When we talk about "clean war," when there is no casualties, no civilians, no innocent people to be killed, that doesn't exist, no one could make it, no war in the world...
The most important factor is how long are the supporters of those terrorists are keep going to keep supporting them, especially Turkey, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, with endorsements of some Western countries including United States, if you don't have that support it won't take more than a few months....That depends on how much the support of terrorist have in Turkey, in Saudi money to have more terrorists coming to Syria, their aim is to prolong the war, so they can prolong it if they want, they've already succeeded in that. That depends on that. If you're talking about how much is going to take as only Syrian conflict, isolated conflict, this is what it won't take for a few months but if it is not isolated conflict as it is the case today, with the interferences of many regional and international powers, it will be going to take some time, and no one has the answer as we have, of course, nobody knows how the war is going to develop...
Interview with Bill Neely (July 2016) on "NBC: Exclusive Interview with Bashar al-Assad"
Talk about the reality, about the facts, when to talk about children being killed, children of who? where? how? you're talking about propaganda, about media campaign, about sometimes fake pictures on the internet, we cannot talk but ones of the facts. We can talk about the facts, I cannot talk about allegations.
Interview with Bill Neely (July 2016) on "NBC: Exclusive Interview with Bashar al-Assad"
When we talk about "clean war," when there is no casualties, no civilians, no innocent people to be killed, that doesn't exist, no one could make it, no war in the world...
Interview with Bill Neely (July 2016) on "NBC: Exclusive Interview with Bashar al-Assad"
Since the beginning of this crisis, we have the same motto "Assad must go" many times from nearly every Western officials in different level whether leader or foreign minister and other officials...we never cared about it...we never, so you cannot talk about this threat, this is an interference in our internal issues; we're not going to respond to, as long as i have the support of Syrian people, I don't care about whether...including the President of United States himself, anyone, so it's same for us, that's why...say Clinton and Trump and what Obama said, for me nothing, we don't put it on our political map; we don't waste our time with those rhetorics or even 'demands'
Interview with Bill Neely (July 2016) on "NBC: Exclusive Interview with Bashar al-Assad"
Whatever (Valerie) Amos or any other official or any organization say something against us doesn't mean it's real. We have to verify what they say and is it the part of propaganda? is it politicized? or what...
Interview with Jeremy Bowen (9 February 2015) on "Syria conflict: BBC exclusive interview with President Bashar al-Assad"
Every 'brute reaction' was by an individual, not by an institution, that's what you have to know, There is a difference between having a policy to crackdown and between having some mistakes committed by some officials. There is a big difference, We don't kill our people… no government in the world kills its people, unless it's led by a crazy person, There was no command to kill or be brutal.
Interview with Barbara Walters (December 2011) ABC News
we have 1100 soldiers and policemen killed, who killed them? "peaceful demonstrators"? this is not logical
You are mixing between the protesters and the killings, it's different, now we are having terrorists in many places...killing, not only now, from the very beginning, now it's recognized by the media that's the difference, that from the very first few weeks we had those terrorists they are getting more and more, more aggressive, they have been killing. we have 1100 soldiers and policemen killed, who killed them? "peaceful demonstrators"? this is not logical, this is unpalatable...
Interview with Barbara Walters (December 2011) ABC News
When, but you, to be frank with you, Barbara, I, you don't live here...how did you know all this? you have to be here to see. We don't see this. So it cannot depend on what you hear in the United States.
Interview with Barbara Walters (December 2011) ABC News
Where is the 'alleged' zeal and passion that they showed towards Syria or the Syrian people? Why haven't they supported Gaza with money and arms? Where are their jihadists and why didn't they send jihadists to defend our people in Palestine?
Had this 'Spring' been genuine, it would've started in the backward Arab countries. Were it a call for freedom, democracy, justice, it would've began in the most oppressive and tyrannical states. The states behind every hardship that befell this nation, and every war against it. States behind the intellectual and religious deviation and moral decline. Their existence is the best success for the west and the main reason for Israel's continued existence. There is no clearer evidence than their current stand regarding the Israeli aggression against Gaza. Where is the 'alleged' zeal and passion that they showed towards Syria or the Syrian people? Why haven't they supported Gaza with money and arms? Where are their jihadists and why didn't they send jihadists to defend our people in Palestine?
2014 Presidential Inauguration Speech (2014)
It is an integrated chain of events: from the occupation of Palestine, to the invasion of Iraq and trying to divide it now and the division of the Sudan all planned by Israel and the West and always executed by the states of tyranny and backwardness in our Arab world. Was it not Abdul Aziz Ibn Abdul Rahman al-Faisal [Ibn Saud] who conceded to Britain that he does not object to giving Palestine to the ‘poor’ Jews in 1915? Did those states not incite the 1967 war, whose price we are still paying today, in order to get rid of the Abul Naser ‘phenomenon’? Did those states not support Iran under the Shah, only to stand against it when it decided to support the Palestinian people and turn the Israeli embassy into a Palestinian embassy after the revolution? Those are the countries which made the ‘King Fahd Peace Initiative’ in 1981 and threatened the Palestinians with rivers of blood if they don’t accept it. When the Palestinian factions rejected it, and in less than a year, there was the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and the ejection of the PLO from Lebanon, not out of concern for Lebanon, but for Israel. Those same states surprised us in 2002 with their greatest concession: ‘normalization in return for peace,’which was later modified to become the ‘Arab Peace Initiative’in the Beirut summit. When Israel attacked Lebanon in 2006, it was those same countries that encouraged Israel and the West not to accept a cease-fire until the Lebanese resistance was destroyed, describing them as ‘adventurous.’ Because these satellite countries succeeded in their tasks, they were charged with funding chaos under the name of the ‘Arab spring,’ and with leading the Arab League after other Arab countries abandoned their roles. The Arab League itself was reduced to summoning NATO and imposing a siege on the Arab states that refused to comply. All of these events constitute a strongly linked chain aimed at liquidating the Palestinian cause; all the money spent by those countries since their creation has been for this purpose. And here they are today playing the same role: in Gaza through Israeli terrorism, and in Syria through terrorism belonging to 83 nationalities. The methods may differ but their objective is the same.
2014 Presidential Inauguration Speech (2014)
They’re just pictures of a head, for example, with some skulls. Who said this is done by the government, not by the rebels?
None of these allegations you mentioned are concrete, all of them are allegations. You can bring photos from anyone and say this is torture. Who took the pictures? Who is he? Nobody knows. There is no verification of any of this evidence, so it’s all allegations without evidence... It’s funded by Qatar, and they say it’s an anonymous source. So nothing is clear or proven. The pictures are not clear which person they show. They’re just pictures of a head, for example, with some skulls. Who said this is done by the government, not by the rebels? Who said this is a Syrian victim, not someone else? For example, photos published at the beginning of the crisis were from Iraq and Yemen.
President al-Assad Interview with Foreign Affairs Magazine (27 January 2015)
You don't live here...how did you know all this? you have to be here to see. We don't see this. So it cannot depend on what you hear in the United States
You have to convince your audiences, you cannot mention such a picture without verifying who are those and where and everything about, just to put it in front of the audience, tell them “they’ve been killed by the Syrian soldiers.” At the end, these are allegations. We have to talk about concrete evidence, at the end. That’s how you can base your judgment. Anyone can say whatever he wants.
Interview with Yahoo News, (2017)
Interview with Jeremy Bowen (2015)
Bowen: You've been very harsh on your criticism on the Saudi, now the Saudis say they are against Islamic State, they are afraid of Islamic State because Islamic State do not want royal family in Saudi Arabia, so is that logical that they want to wipe them out?
Assad: First of all, the sources of the Islamic State (IS) ideology and other al-Qaeda affiliate groups are the Wahabbi that has been supported by the royal family in Saudi Arabia, so just to say that we do and we don't, it doesn't matter, it's what you do, what the action that you are taking in order to prove that what you are saying is correct.
Bowen: So, you are saying then that Saudi Arabia bear high degree of responsibility to the emergence of this ideologies and this armed groups?
Assad: Definitely, definitely, there is no question...
Interview with Bill Neely (2016)
How can you blame now Bush for the one million Iraqi deaths since the war in Iraq in 2003?...He attacked sovereign country while we are defending our country, he killed Iraqi people on their land, we are defending mainly against terrorists coming from different places in that world.
Neely: He (Donald Trump) has made very few comments about Syria or the Middle East, but he described you as a 'bad guy.' Does that worry you?
Assad: That is his opinion, It's his personal opinion. He doesn't have to see me as a good guy. The question for me, Do Syrians see me as a good guy or bad guy? not American person or president or nominee, I don't care about it...
Neely: It's not just Russia attack your enemies, it's the United States, do you welcome American airstrikes against ISIS?
Assad: No, because it's not legal, first of all, it's not legal...
Neely: It's not legal for Russia to do it, is it?
Assad: No, They are invited legally and formally by the Syrian government, it's the right of any government to invite any other country to help in any issue, so they are legal in Syria while the American are not legal with their allies, of course all of them are not legal...
Assad: How can you blame now [George W] Bush for the one million Iraqi deaths since the war in Iraq in 2003?......
Neely: I am not talking about President Bush, I am here to ask you...
Assad: I'm talking about the principle now, it's about the principle, the same principle, he attacked a sovereign country while I defend my country. If you want to use one standard it's one thing but if you want to do a double standard that's another thing.
Neely: You're still not giving me the impression that actually you care very much.
Assad: I talk to American audiences, so there must be analogy between the two things because it's about the logic that you used to explain something, it's not only about my answer. He (Bush) attacked sovereign country while we are defending our country, he killed Iraqi people on their land, we are defending mainly against terrorists coming from different places in that world. This is our right.
Neely: How do you think history will remember you?
Assad: How I hope the history remember me, I cannot think, I cannot foretell, I am not fortune-teller, I hope that the history would see me as the man who protected his country from the terrorism and from the intervention and save its sovereignty and the integrity of its land.
Neely: Because you know what the first draft of history is saying that you are a brutal dictator, you're a man with blood on your hands, more blood on your hands than even on your father's...
Assad: No, again I would draw an example, If you have a doctor who cut the head because of a gangrene to save the patient, you don't say he's a brutal doctor, he is doing his job in order to save the rest of the body, so when you protect your country from the terrorists and you kill terrorists and you defeat terrorists you are not a brutal, you are a patriot. That's how you look at yourself and that's how the people want to look at you...
Neely: That's how you see yourself, as a patriot...
Assad: I cannot be objective about looking at myself, the most important thing how the Syrians look at me, that's the real and objective opinion, not my opinion, I cannot be objective about myself...
Quotes about Bashar al-Assad
Academicians and scientists
Activists
Artists
He represents the case of stubbornness.
Nicole Saba
Journalists
His assaults killed seven times more civilians than IS has.
Kristin Helberg
Jurists and lawyers
We should not allow ourselves to be collectively hypnotized into believing the media hype that would portray murderers as heroes, and the Syrian people and government struggling to expel them from their country as the villains. Author Janine Di Giovanni, another vehement supporter of NATO-backed regime change in Syria, recently penned an article in the New York Times entitled “In Syria Even the Hospitals are not Safe.” Di Giovanni claims that “Bashar Al Assad [personally] attacks medical facilities to break the will of the people — and to destroy evidence of his war crimes.” Di Giovanni fails to mention the rebuilding and restoration of the hospitals in areas of Syria that were previously occupied by the multi-faceted armed groups, which had either destroyed or systematically taken over hospitals and schools before converting them into detention centers, sharia courtrooms, and torture chambers... Di Giovanni dismisses Syrian government claims that targeted hospitals are occupied by the terrorists and armed groups, without addressing the evidence that hospitals and schools were occupied by militant factions in East Aleppo, Eastern Ghouta, Quneitra, Daraa, Homs, and across Syria. Di Giovanni persists in the unequivocal defense of the U.K.-manufactured White Helmets accused by Syrian civilians of child abduction, organ trafficking, participation in executions of civilians and prisoners of war, and the faking of “chemical weapon” events in Douma, Eastern Ghouta, April 2018. Events that fraudulently facilitated the unlawful bombing of Syrian territory by the U.S Coalition on 13th April 2018....
Vanessa Beeley inSyria War Diary: In the Western Media Narrative, SAA-Targeted Underground Bunkers and Terrorist-Run Prisons Become “Hospitals”, Mintpress news, (10 June 2019)
War is destructive and during a war, it is sadly inevitable that civilians will die or be injured. They are caught up in its ferocity and their lives are devastated. What Di Giovanni fails to do is to explain who created the cycle of violence that has ravaged Syria for eight years. Di Giovanni fails to express outrage over the fact that the United States and its allies in the U.K., European Union, the Gulf States, Turkey and Israel have been equipping, arming, financing and promoting extremist armed factions that have laid waste to cities, historical heritage sites, and civilization across Syria.... The Syrian government has no choice but to liberate Idlib from the terrorist infestation it endures because Syrian civilians will keep dying if these groups are allowed to expand and put down deeper sectarian roots in the region... No other government in the world would tolerate such an invasion of its territory and persecution of its people by foreign mercenaries and hardcore radical factions among its own society.
Vanessa Beeley inSyria War Diary: In the Western Media Narrative, SAA-Targeted Underground Bunkers and Terrorist-Run Prisons Become “Hospitals”, Mintpress news, (10 June 2019)
After years of brutal fighting along purportedly confessional lines, the complex Syrian conflict has become a regional and international proxy war. What began as a peaceful popular uprising against the brutal tyranny of the Assad clan is now a global conflict.
Loay Mudhoon, 14 November 2015 en.qantara.de
Poets
Dear Bashar al-Assad Apologists: Your Hero Is a War Criminal Even If He Didn’t Gas Syrians.
Marah Bukai, 20 April 2018 twitter.com
Politicians and diplomats
It’s sickening to hear these clowns repeatedly claim that “Assad murdered 500,000 of his people,” as though the U.S.-backed terrorists have played no role in the killings. I’ve viewed hundreds of beheadings and crucifixions online but none committed by Syria troops – all were proudly posted by the hellish filth that we’ve recruited, armed and trained for the past eight years. Major war crimes, like beheading 250 Syrian soldiers after running them across the desert in their underpants, were scarcely mentioned by the MSM.
Virginia State Senator Dick Black in Has Trump Been Outmaneuvered on Syria Troop Withdrawal? Consortium News, (3 January 2019)
The reason is not simply because of my opinion of him. It is because it is unimaginable that you can stop the civil war there when the overwhelming majority of people in Syria consider him to be a brutal, murderous dictator.
Barack Obama, when he said that Assad must leave office to end Syria crisis [1]
My patience ran out on President Assad a long time ago. The reason why is because he houses Hamas, he facilitates Hezbollah, suiciders go from his country into Iraq, and he destabilises Lebanon.
George W Bush, as quoted in Bush 'loses patience' with Syria, BBC News (20 December 2007)
There’s a different leader in Syria now. Many of the members of Congress of both parties who have gone to Syria in recent months have said they believe he’s a reformer.
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, CBS Face The Nation interview (27 March 2011).[1]
For me he is the last Arab ruler, and Syria is the last Arab country. It is the fortress of the remaining dignity of the Arabs, and that's why I'm proud to be here.
British MP George Galloway in a speech at the University of Damascus. The speech aired on Al-Jazeera TV on November 13, 2005. [2]
There is considerable evidence that Bashar al-Assad is actually supported by a large majority of the Syrian people, even among those who would welcome more democracy, because they know the alternative to him is chaos... Washington... clearly would like to see a solution that involves a fragmentation of the state enabling containment and rollback of Iranian influence there while also satisfying both its clients Israel and the Saudis as well as creating a possible mini-state for the Kurds. The destruction of Syria and the Syrian people will just be regarded as collateral damage while building a new Middle East. Hopefully the Syrians, backed by Iran, Russia and China will prevent that from happening and as the U.S. did not directly engage in much of the hard fighting that destroyed ISIS, it thankfully has little leverage over what comes next.
Philip Giraldi in Destroying Syria. Why does Washington hate Bashar al-Assad? The Unz Review (23 January 2018)
Although Americans are starting to wake up, many people are still caught up in the mainstream narrative regarding the Syrian war.... Starting in 2011, tens of thousands of foreigners – Al Qaeda and other jihadists – were sent into Syria to overthrow Assad. The U.S. and its allies – Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey & Jordan – assisted in buying and transporting weapons to the “insurgents.” Special forces from the U.S., U.K., France and Israel also spent billions of dollars arming and training the terrorists, a.k.a “moderate rebels.” What’s happening in Syria is not a civil war – it’s a proxy war. Assad has been fighting the Islamic terrorists for seven years. It’s cynical and Orwellian for the West to shed crocodile tears for the Syrians and blame Assad for this brutal war. While the presstitutes make it look like Assad is fighting women and children, fact is that the rebels have highly sophisticated weapons – million-dollar tanks, U.S.-made anti-tank missiles that cost $250,000 etc..
Chris Kanthan in Debunking 10 lies about Syria and Assad, NationofChange, (17 April 2018)
Assad protects Christians and other minorities. There’s no Sharia Law in Syria, and religious minorities have full freedom. The only group that’s “oppressed” in Syria is the violent Muslim Brotherhood, which has been banned for many decades. The Syrian opposition consists of Sunni extremists who have been persecuting and killing Shiites and Christians for the last seven years.
Chris Kanthan in Debunking 10 lies about Syria and Assad, NationofChange, (17 April 2018)
File:AP18127513994957.jpg
... the biggest criminal of our time.
Saad Hariri

... Assad’s survival—if Saddam Hussein’s murderous rampage in 1991 is any indication—will without a shadow of a doubt translate into hundreds of thousands of Syrian dead, mostly butchered after his victory has been assured. The comparison comes to mind because the two Ba’thi regimes of Saddam Hussein and Bashar Assad bear an unmistakable resemblance—they are mirror images of one another, one might say. Both are minority dominated, single party regimes originating in the same quasi-fascist pan-Arab ideology built on the principle that any form of disagreement is an act of “betrayal” to the “revolution.”
Kanan Makiya, "Intervention In Syria is a Moral and Human Imperative", New Republican (February 24, 2012)
Assad as President has actively tried to kill his own people. He has bombed them with barrel bombs in a most terrible way. He has brought untold suffering over his people -- if you look at Aleppo and other places. When you talk to the many Syrian refugees who have fled here to Germany, they will be able to tell you their own personal story, and the majority of them -- the great majority of them -- fled from Assad, and most of them not even fled the IS. So I don’t see him as an ally.
Angela Merkel, Remarks by President Obama and Chancellor Merkel of Germany in a Joint Press Conference (November 17, 2016)
The truth about the US presence in Syria has rarely been told. But one can be sure that the US has had no scruples about democracy in Syria or elsewhere in the region, as its warm embrace of Saudi Arabia amply demonstrates. The US decided to promote an insurgency to overthrow Bashar al-Assad in 2011 not because the US and allies like Saudi Arabia longed for Syrian democracy, but because they decided that Assad was a hindrance to US regional interests. Assad’s sins were clear: he allied with Russia, and he received support from Iran.
Jeffrey Sachs in Trump’s Syria Withdrawal is a Chance for Peace, Project Syndicate (2 January 2019)
Today, Bashar Al-Assad is playing the role of the son of the Levanter, offering his services to any would-be buyer through interviews with whoever passes through the corner of Damascus where he is hiding. At first glance, the Levanter may appear attractive to those engaged in sordid games. In the end, however, the Levanter must betray his existing paymaster in order to begin serving a new one. Four years ago, Bashar switched to the Tehran-Moscow axis and is now trying to switch back to the Tel-Aviv-Washington one that he and his father served for decades. However, if the story has one lesson to teach, it is that the Levanter is always the source of the problem, rather than part of the solution. ISIS is there because almost half a century of repression by the Assads produced the conditions for its emergence. What is needed is a policy based on the truth of the situation in which both Assad and ISIS are parts of the same problem.
Amir Taheri, Opinion: Like Father, Like Son , Ashraq Al-Awsat (Feb 20, 2015)
Those who urge an alliance with Assad cite the example of Joseph Stalin, the Soviet despot who became an ally of Western democracies against Nazi Germany. I never liked historical comparisons and like this one even less. To start with, the Western democracies did not choose Stalin as an ally; he was thrusted upon them by the turn of events. When the Second World War started Stalin was an ally of Hitler thanks to the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. The Soviet Union actively participated in the opening phase of the war by invading Poland from the east as the Germans came in from the West. Before that, Stalin had rendered Hitler a big service by eliminating thousands of Polish army officers in The Katyn massacre. Between September 1939 and June 1941, when Hitler invaded the Soviet Union, Stalin was an objective ally of Hitler. Stalin switched sides when he had no choice if he wanted to save his skin. The situation in Syria today is different. There is no alliance of democracies which, thanks to Obama’s enigmatic behavior, lack any strategy in the Middle East. Unlike Stalin, Assad has not switched sides if only because there is no side to switch to. Assad regards ISIS as a tactical ally against other armed opposition groups. This is why Russia is now focusing its air strikes against non-ISIS armed groups opposed to Assad. More importantly, Assad has none of the things that Stalin had to offer the Allies. To start with Stalin could offer the vast expanse of territory controlled by the Soviet Union and capable of swallowing countless German divisions without belching. Field Marshal von Paulus’ one-million man invasion force was but a drop in the ocean of the Soviet landmass. In contrast, Assad has no territorial depth to offer. According to the Iranian General Hossein Hamadani, who was killed in Aleppo, Assad is in nominal control of around 20 percent of the country. Stalin also had an endless supply of cannon fodder, able to ship in millions from the depths of the Urals, Central Asia and Siberia. In contrast, Assad has publicly declared he is running out of soldiers, relying on Hezbollah cannon fodder sent to him by Tehran. If Assad has managed to hang on to part of Syria, it is partly because he has an air force while his opponents do not. But even that advantage has been subject to the law of diminishing returns. Four years of bombing defenseless villages and towns has not changed the balance of power in Assad’s favor. This may be why his Russian backers decided to come and do the bombing themselves. Before, the planes were Russian, the pilots Syrian. Now both planes and pilots are Russian, underlining Assad’s increasing irrelevance. Stalin’s other card, which Assad lacks, consisted of the USSR’s immense natural resources, especially the Azerbaijan oilfields which made sure the Soviet tanks could continue to roll without running out of petrol. Assad in contrast has lost control of Syria’s oilfields and is forced to buy supplies from ISIS or smugglers operating from Turkey. There are other differences between Stalin then and Assad now. Adulated as “the Father of the Nation” Stalin had the last word on all issues. Assad is not in that position. In fact, again according to the late Hamadani in his last interview published by Iranian media, what is left of the Syrian Ba’athist regime is run by a star chamber of shadowy characters who regard Assad as nothing but a figurehead.
Amir Taheri, Opinion: No, Bashar Al-Assad is no Joseph Stalin, Ashraq Al-Awsat (16 Oct, 2015).
I am saying it loud and clear, Bashar al-Assad is actually a terrorist who has inflicted state terror.
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan
The future of Syria must be determined by its people, but President Bashar al-Assad is standing in their way. His calls for dialogue and reform have rung hollow while he is imprisoning, torturing and slaughtering his own people.
Barack Obama
President Assad, who is resorting to brutal military force against his own people and who is responsible for the situation, has lost all legitimacy and can no longer claim to lead the country.
David Cameron
Writers
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Syria crisis: Assad says no transition while 'terrorists' remain
Last edited on 26 May 2021, at 06:29
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