Assad’s Response to Demands He Must Go
by Stephen Lendman
In June 2014, he was overwhelmingly reelected Syria’s president - through a democratic process international observers called open, free and fair.
Syrians want no one else leading them. They alone have the right to decide, not foreign powers. He’s their legitimate president.
Given his popularity, he could serve as long as he wishes. On numerous occasions, he said he’ll step aside if Syrians want another leader.
Following the April 4 Kahn Sheikhoun CW attack, falsely blamed on Syria’s military, Secretary of State Tillerson said there’s “no role for (Assad) to govern the Syrian people.”
US UN envoy Haley said “(w)hen the United Nations consistently fails in its duty to act collectively, there are times in the life of states that we are compelled to take our own action.”
On Sunday, she said “(w)e know that there is not any sort of option were a political solution is going to happen with Assad at the head of the regime.”
The same day National Security Advisor McMaster said “it’s very difficult to understand how a political solution (is possible with) the continuation of the Assad regime” - clearly calling for his removal, naked aggression on the phony pretext of humanitarian intervention America’s policy of choice.
In September 2015, Assad said “(a)s for the president, he comes to power with the people’s assent through elections, and if he leaves, he leaves if the people demand it, not because of the judgment of the United States, the UN Security Council, the Geneva Conference or the Geneva Communique.”
“If the people want him to stay the president stays. In the opposite case, he should swiftly step down.”
A month later, he said “I would like to be very clear. No foreign officials might decide the future of Syria, the future of Syria’s political system or the individuals who should govern Syria. This is the Syrian people’s decision. That’s why these statements mean nothing to us.”
Last February, he blasted EU countries for obeying “the American master” on Syria and other geopolitical issues, explaining his leadership and government have popular support.
“…If you don’t have public support, you cannot achieve anything in Syria, especially in a war. In a war…you need - the most important thing - to have public support in order to restore your country, to restore stability and security. Without (it) you cannot achieve anything,” he stressed.
Achieving peace and stability involves more than negotiations. “How can we stop the flow of the terrorists toward Syria or in Syria,” he asked?
“How can we stop the support from regional countries like Turkey, Gulf States, or from Europe, like France and UK, or from the US during the Obama administration?”
“If we deal with that (issue), this is where we can talk about the rest, about the political procedure.”
He’s waiting for Trump to fulfill his pledge to combat terrorism, not support it like Obama - so far seeing no change in US policy.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.