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Syria’s ‘Figurative’ President!

Syria’s ‘Figurative’ President!

Sunday, 1 January, 2023 - 08:45
Tariq Al-Homayed
Saudi journalist and writer, and former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper

Sooner or later, days and events will prove that the key to clipping Iran’s nails in the region and taking back the confrontation with Iran inside Iran is Syria, not any other country, whether it is Iraq or Lebanon.

What brought about this introduction was a story published by our newspaper about Iranian expansion in Syria and plans to create another southern suburb in Damascus, like the one in Beirut.

Beirut’s southern suburb, a destructive stronghold for “Hezbollah,” acts as headquarters for destabilizing our region and Mediterranean nations.

Establishing a new suburb in Syria will be more devastating and influential.

Since Khomeini’s days in power, Tehran has been seeking an anchor in the Mediterranean that enables it to promote the lie of “opposition and resistance.” It also sought false legitimacy by claiming confrontation with Israel to propagate animosity against the countries of the region.

By pursuing a view of the Mediterranean, Iran wants to find a place for itself with the West, because any disturbance in the security of the Mediterranean means a refugee crisis and the export of terrorism.

Syria also represents supply lines from Tehran to Lebanon, via Iraq.

Since the alleged Arab Spring, and the real revolution in Syria, I have been saying that striking Iran in Syria means cutting off the tentacles of the Iranian octopus in the region and exposing its head inside Iran.

At that time, Tehran will be forced to face its internal obligations. Former US President Obama neglected this and missed the opportunity.

The story in Syria is not sectarian. The statement of “there is no war without Egypt and there is no peace without Syria” is also a lie. Moreover, what is happening in Syria is not necessarily targeting his excellency the “figurative” President Bashar al-Assad. Rather, it is a story of stability and cutting off Iran’s supply lines.

What is important is to stop the project of exporting the Iranian revolution. Spreading Iran’s agenda and ideology would be impossible if the Iranians lose Syria.

Since Assad’s accession to power in Syria, there have been false hopes that he would move away from Iran and make Syria an independent state.

Here I am not talking about Arabism or sectarianism, and perhaps those aspirations were acceptable at the time, to some, but it was a big lie.

Time has proven this, and it is not wise now to repeat past experiences. Assad has traded this story until he deservedly became the “figurative” president, not the Syrian.

Today, there are several occupiers in Syria, not just one.

The Russians, the US, the Turks, and the Israelis are all found in Syria, and Iran now wants to finish off what is left.

Iran does not want to deal with Syria as a proper state of influence, but rather as a state that is effectively ruled by Tehran.

Such a model would be worse than that of Lebanon, where there is at least resistance to Iranian influence. Meanwhile, Syria has been destroyed, and its people were exposed to abhorrent sectarian violence and the presence of about 60,000 fighters from Iranian militias.

Recent news and reports talk about Yemen’s Houthis training in Syria to launch drones.

Therefore, the advice here to the Arabs and the West, and specifically to Washington, is that Syria will stay an arena of conflict, and that the solution to the crisis there, and before that the crisis with Iran, will be through overthrowing the Iranian project in Syria.

This will not happen without a political solution that results in toppling the “figurative” president, so that Syria will be ruled by a Syrian who does not belong to Iran.

Then the region will change.

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