No deal without Assad


    Comment by S.R.H. Hashmi:

    What happened to Iraq and Iraqis after the removal of strongman Saddam Hussain – who had given his people a fair degree of stability and peace – is right before us. And after seeing that, any state or group that removed Libyan strongman Col. Moammar Qaddafi and is now trying to remove Bashar al-Assad of Syria can not be a well-wisher of mankind, much less a friend of Muslims..

    And this leaves no doubt in my mind in which category to place the US President Barack Obama, his poodles who start barking –and biting – at anyone their masters points a finger at, and indeed Saudi Arabia and Turkey, who have gone too far in their hatred of, and animosity towards Shias.

    And what makes it even more painful is that in their endeavour to remove Shia leader Bashar al-Assad, they have wrecked Syria where Sunnis are in majority, and whom they claim to support. It is shocking to see women and children who were well off once, now reduced to begging in the streets of neighbouring states and even searching dustbins to find something to eat.

    Yet others have fled to Europe and while the European public and some governments have accepted them, and in isolated cases even given them a warm welcome, they still are facing many problems. Just a few days back, there were reports of up to ten thousand unaccompanied teenagers among the refugees in Europe having disappeared, and feared to have fallen into the hands of criminals involved in sex trade.

    And in addition to grave harm that it has already done, Saudi Arabia has now announced its intention to send ground troops to fight Syrian government troops. Mind you, the Saudis never spared any forces to fight against Israel. In fact, Saudis have imposed sanctions against Hezbollah which is one force that fought Israel valiantly and forced it to drop its plans to re-occupy part of Lebanon. There were even reports that the Saudis were planning to collaborate with Israel in attacking Iran. They are annoyed with Hezbollah, as also Iran and Russia for siding with Bashar al-Assad.

    If Bashar is still standing five years after the combined onslaught by them, it is about time for Saudi Arabia, Turkey and the Western governments accepted, even if grudgingly, that he is there to stay, and that that he is the only person who can restore peace to Syria and keep the country together. However, an unfortunate combination of hatred of Shias and/or stupidity and arrogance forces them not to accept the reality of the situation. And additionally for Western powers, anything that helps them in implementing their map-change plan in the region is most welcome.

    It is with a heavy heart that I criticize Saudi Arabia and Turkey, because both have been Pakistan’s friends and have come to our rescue in times of need. I wish they did not bring matters to this stage.

    And if Saudis are not careful, Muslims will start calling them ‘Barbarians wearing too holy masks’ instead of “Custodians of the two Holy Mosques’ a title which they take pride in claiming, and not without justification, as they have done, and continue doing wonderful development work to make the life of the pilgrims easier.

    I may add here that I speak as a Sunni Muslim, a strong believer in unity among Muslims, and malice towards none.