Lavrov, 'ISIS': Solutions Which Spare Bloodshed By Putting An End To The Assad Killing Machine
23 July 2016
By Tariq Alhomayed
Even though U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry speaks on bolstering
cooperation between his country and Russia to take on extremist groups in
Syria, namely ISIS, his counterpart Russia's Sergey Lavrov continues to blame
the U.S. 2003 invasion of Iraq for the group's rise.
In his speech to a youth forum Lavrov said that the West's policy in the
Middle East is what had led to the current dilemma faced by the region, Russia
Today (RT) reported.
Lavrov argues that Washington by agreeing to sack military officers who had
served in Saddam Hussein's administration had directly caused the sidelining
of the Sunni population in Iraq, and forced many of the officers to join ISIS
and other hard-line armed groups.
Moreover, Lavrov said there are no guarantees on the Libya scenario not being
repeated in Libya in case the regime head Bashar al-Assad is removed from
Assad's Russian allies call on removing him from authority before any
counter-terrorism takes place, however, Moscow only sees Assad's leave
possible through elections!
Contradicting notes call on the true question; is the Russian FM Lavrov really
looking into a possible solution, or is he looking to buy time as to defend
Assad? If Lavrov seeks solutions, most of them lie in learning from previous
experiences and not in blaming others.
Before ISIS was established, al-Qaeda appeared in Iraq, and it was defeated.
ISIS being Qaeda's worse, had only emerged as a result of the lack of serious
political resolution in Iraq— no real political action managed to halt
sectarian-based cleansing in Iraq or to eradicate Iranian interference. When
U.S. President Obama decided on swiftly pulling out of Iraq, the political
state was far from stabilized.
Should Russia's Lavrov truly seek serious solutions, and preventing such
ultra-hardline groups from reemerging, then he should draw wisdom from the
Soviet Union's experience on invading Afghanistan in December 1978, which is
quite similar to what Russia shares with Assad today.
After the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the Taliban group was established,
further fortified presence, and later annexed what was then known by the
''Arab Jihadists'' who later gave birth to Qaeda movement. The rest of the
story is known well.
What Lavrov says on Assad and the U.S. shapes well for debates to be held by
journalists- not decision making politicians.
What is needed today is the presentation of solutions which spare bloodshed by
putting an end to the Assad killing machine that has taken the lives of half a
million of Syrians and displaced other millions. Assad's regime has proven to
be today's source of terrorism and the spring to all lurking dangers facing
the region and the West.
Which brings us to the conclusion that Lavrov's statements prove one thing
alone, it remains difficult for us to trust in the Russians, or to believe
that an understanding can be reached with them.
Maybe the Russians really do wish to arrive at an agreement somehow; however,
it will not be materialized through political negotiations and persuasions, it
is only realized when Russians witness a serious U.S. and western action taken
for Syria, especially on the battlefield itself. Other than that it is all but
a waste of time and souls.
Tariq Alhomayed is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat. Mr.
Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current
affair programs, and during his distinguished career has held numerous
positions at Asharq Al-Awsat, amongst other newspapers. Notably, he was the
first journalist to interview Osama Bin Ladin's mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a
bachelor's degree in media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah.
He is based in London.