Syrian President Bashar Assad
Photo: AP
Protests in Syria
Photo: Reuters
Embrace Syrian revolution
Op-ed: Israelis should shun ‘better the devil you know’ mentality, endorse anti-Assad uprising
On March 15, 2011 the Syrian Revolution started. Emboldened by other Arabs seeking freedom and better economic conditions, Syrians decided they too had enough of Assad. It started in Deraa, not far from the Jordanian border and spread quickly to other regions of the country. Since then, Assad has spilled the blood of Syrians in many towns, but more so in Deraa and Latakya, supposedly two Assad strongholds.


The Syrian Revolution is being recorded aptly on cell phone cameras by subscribers to Assad's SyriaTel. His tools of corruption have become our tools of freedom. There is no escaping the bloody videos streaming on YouTube shot by Syrians determined to let the world know who Assad is. If you wish to see mothers cry, fathers fall, and young men shot through the head, then head to Assad's world on YouTube.


Not just our mothers are mourning but Israeli mothers have mourned too, and Lebanese mothers, and Iraqi mothers, and American mothers whose tears have drained the beating sound of their hearts; they all wish to see the end of Assad's criminality and his history buried forever. Yet there are those, in the US and Israel, who continue to pretend that lost lives can be sacrificed for a small sliver of hope called peace. But no one seems to bother to ask how peace will materialize from a man whose hands drip with the blood of so many in such a short period of time. What chance do Israelis have to trust their future to a killer who massacres his own people?


The people of Israel are beyond trusting Assad certainly; however, it is almost impossible not to read, once in a while, few articles written in the Israeli press asking the question: "What's the alternative?" and "The devil we know" suppositions.


But consider the facts: Assad arms Hezbollah to kidnap your soldiers; he empowers Hamas to strike fear in the hearts of your children; he protects every known terrorist organization, many of whom have scorched your earth and set the hearts of your crying mothers, daughters, and wives ablaze. Yet the world still reads "The devil you know...” statements in Israeli press. It almost borders on masochism after all the terror Assad rained on Israel to suggest he is a "devil" you are willing to accept.


Syrians seek freedom, not religion

The Syrian Revolution is about the haves and the have-nots. It is about economic empowerment, halting uncontrollable corruption, and the arrogance of a half-witted man. The average age in Syria is 21.7; a Syrian first accessed the Internet around the age of 13 - so is it a wonder freedom is his aim and not religion? In watching your TV sets, has anyone witnessed a Syrian plastering pictures of an unknown Islamist leader as they did for Khomeini in the 1979 Iranian Revolution? Or shouting the name of one? We know of many Hip-Hop songs written against Assad but not one poem written for any Syrian Islamist leader.


The alternative to Assad is freedom. The alternative to the single party rule is democracy.


In a democracy, politicians are held accountable by the people; Syrians died, in this Revolution, for a better life and I dare any Muslim Brotherhood member to take the podium and speak about Israel or some other cause. That will be the end of them.


Syrian politicians, in a new Syria, will turn inward to provide for their people’s security and comfort. Ever since Iraq gained its freedom, has any Scud missile been fired on Israel? The country is too busy building and so will Syria when we are free.


Syrians are far from being perfect. Many, in fact, have been educated in the art of hate. Jews? Throw them to the sea. Jerusalem? Ours to the last drop of blood. Holocaust? A hoax. Do not blame them because their words are meant to protect Assad, their master of fear. Instead, look at the revolution going on now. Hear the words Syrians shout. It is not about you or your country. It is about Assad and his shortcomings. After Assad, comes the difficult task of rebuilding a torn and poor nation.


So do not be afraid to embrace our revolution. There are too many good Syrians aspiring to look inward to build a nation the Assads destroyed. Not only will we build Syria, we will stand in the face of those who seek to ever exercise again the art of hate, enmity and exclusion. We are not asking you to bet your future on our words, but we are asking you to understand this revolution and to question those who keep repeating “What’s the alternative?” like a parrot repeats the words of his master long after he is gone.



פרסום ראשון: 04.02.11, 18:47
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