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Friday, May 13, 2005 

Syrian opposition: 'no' to regime change

"We refuse a forced change of the regime by a foreign power...This is a red line", says Hasan Abdul-Azim, the head of a Syrian coalition of banned opposition parties.

Their battle is now against American threats towards Syria. The irony for Washington is that their hostility towards Syria has actually increased support for the government. It has also entrenched the government, and made reform more difficult.

However, diplomats and analysts believe that the President will finally usher in radical change to Syria at this June's party conference. Reformist President Bashar Al-Assad has already crossed one of Syria's so-called red-lines by withdrawing from Lebanon.

Some have suggested a degree of political pluralilty will be allowed - with independent parties allowed. Others suggest that independent newspapers will be allowed to operated freely (they were allowed in 2000, but the last one 'Ad-Domari, recently closed under government pressure). There are also hopes that the emergency law will fianlly be lifted.

Despite a healthy and hopeful Syrian-based opposition, there was universal condemnation for parties with no local support, like the US-based 'Reform Party of Syria'. The party's leader, Farid Ghadry, is derided as a war salesman, of the Ahmed Chalabi/Michel Aoun school of politics.

thnk god there are people in the opposition who haveloyalty to the counrty more thsn their own self interest.

Most of the opposition have always been most loyal to Syria, specially when it comes to threats from Israel and USA.. They are after all taking great risks, and suffering,just for existing as opposition and critisizing what is going on. Al Ghadri is just a strange US invented alien, and an exception.

You oppose any change ot the current regime sponsored by a foreign country! In the current global dynamics there will be no meaningful change if not blessed by a big power. I am not saying this will be ideal but as far as I am concerned, this is the only way to proceed and achieve any change.

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