The Arab Spring
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T he more Bashar Assad butchers Syrian dissidents, the more the world community expresses outrage — while it does little to stop the bloodletting. Why? Ironies on top of ironies
With recent events in Syria capturing headlines around the world, we have been bombarded with reports and statistics provided by the opposition forces fighting President Bashar al-Assad’s Syrian army. Social media reports from the opposition use terminology guaranteed to capture our attention: massacre, genocide, torture, child rape and beheading, to list but a few. Estimates of those killed in any one attack regularly vary by a factor of up to 10 and are always biased to solicit sympathy and concern for the side in the conflict providing them. With no way to confirm the actual facts, it’s not surprising that each country’s media coverage, including Canada’s, reinforces the natural bias of that country’s attitude toward Syria.
T he surrender is complete now. The Hindu reports that the Obama administration has turned to Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the Muslim Brotherhood’s leading jurist, to mediate secret negotiations between the United States and the Taliban. I wrote about Qaradawi at length in The Grand Jihad and, here at NRO, have regularly catalogued his activities (see, e.g., here , here , here , here , and here ; see also Andrew Bostom’s “ Qaradawi’s Odious Vision ”). For those who may be unfamiliar with him, he is the most influential Sunni Islamist in the world, thanks to such ventures as his al-Jazeera TV program ( Sharia and Life ) and website (IslamOnline.net). In 2003, he issued a fatwa calling for the killing of American troops in Iraq. As he put it ,
Rabat , Morocco — A little over a year ago, a young fruit vendor in Tunisia poured gasoline on himself, struck a match, and committed suicide. He was protesting thuggish policemen who had confiscated his goods, but his self-immolation helped ignite a series of uprisings across the Arab world in 2011. One by one, the people of Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya toppled their rulers. In Syria, Pres. Bashar al-Assad is struggling to suppress a growing popular revolt, and has even earned the ire of the normally spineless Arab League.