Tag Archives: Obama

Suckered into Authoritarian Tactics: How Obama and Sarkozy Got Syria Wrong

Commentary by Tamer Mallat – 8 May, 2011

The year 2008 marked a shift in US and French foreign policy strategies with Syria. From a policy of complete isolation, to cautious inclusion, the US and France hoped to lure the Syrian regime out of the Iranian sphere of influence in the region. They believed that unlike his father, the Western educated Bashar al-Assad had the potential to become a credible and reliable partner in the Middle East. When the Arab uprisings first began to spread from country to country, Bashar, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, boasted that Syria would not house the scene of a revolution. On March 15, protests began in the southern border-town of Deraa spreading soon after from city to city. The repressive machine was unleashed, but despite massive killings and arrests, the French and American governments remain attached to ‘behavioral change’ over ‘regime change.’ Continue reading

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