Saturday, February 25, 2012

The new Cold War has already started – in Syria

By Robert Fisk

".....No, we are not going to involve ourselves in Syria, thank you very much. Because the new Cold War in the region which Hague was blathering on about has already started over Syria, not Iran. The Russians are lined up against us there, supporting Assad and denouncing us. Just what reaction Putin expects from any Assad replacement is a mystery. Nor will a "new" Syria necessarily be the pro-Western democracy that Hague-Hague and others would like to see.

The Syrians, after all, will not forget the way in which the Brits and the Americans silently approved of the infinitely more terrible massacre of 10,000 Syrian Sunni Muslims at Hama in 1982. Indeed, today marks the 30th anniversary of that onslaught, staged by the Defence Brigades of Bashar al-Assad's Uncle Rifaat.

But, like Hague-Hague, Rifaat also has a doppelgänger. Far from being the killer of Hama – a term he fiercely disputes – he is now a friendly and retired gentleman, living in style and protection quite close to Hague-Hague's desk. Indeed, if Hague-Hague turns left outside the Foreign Office and nips through Horseguards Parade, he can drop by and meet the man himself in – where else would he live? – Mayfair. Now that would be a disaster in world affairs, wouldn't it?"

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