US must be blamed for dialogue failure in Syria: Nabil Mikhail
Thu Feb 14, 2013 1:54PM
I think also that America is to be blamed for this because America should have looked at some elements in the Syrian opposition, whereby some reform, some dialogue, some initiative could have been submitted."An analyst recognizes the US as the puppet master behind proxy war inside Syria and because there is no coherent opposition, the Obama administration is blamed for the ongoing violence and failure of dialogue in the country. In the background of this Russia, Damascus and the Syrian opposition have expressed willingness to now hold talks inside Syria as a means to end the crisis. On Wednesday, the Syrian Foreign Ministry issued a statement saying talks will be based on political reforms outlined by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.. Many people, including large numbers of security personnel, civilians and a large number of foreign militants have been killed in the crisis, which has been ongoing since mid-March 2011. Press TV has conducted an interview with Nabil Mikhail, professor at the George Washington University to further discuss the issue at hand. What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview. Press TV: How are you feeling at this point about the prospects for these dialogues and their success? Mikhail: A little bit disappointed, a little bit pessimistic, I did not give up the hope yet. I hope some day sooner or later a solution, a settlement will be reached for the Syrian crisis. But after listening to Obama yesterday during his speech, the State of the Union address to the nation, it seems to me that Obama is very minimalist when it comes to Syria. John Kerry, his secretary of state, promises more activism; a different course; more interest than the attitude of Hillary Clinton. There is actually very much negligence of Syria so far. Unless the domestic and regional dialogue is backed by outside powers and by Moscow and Washington, I think the dialogue will not really get a swift conclusion or help remedy the crisis.
So much blood has been shed. I think as point of departure, there should be a concern for how to end the violence.You mentioned a number of potential diplomatic contacts, if this type of contact aims to stop the violence that can be a good beginning. Press TV: At the very least is this, in a sense, an admittance by the Syrian coalition. From day one President Assad has been calling for this sort of dialogue, finally after all these deaths and after all this time, are they finally admitting that he was right in a sense to call for this dialogue from the get-go? Mikhail: The opposition in Syria is very divided. You can hardly speak of a unified front.
I think it was last week when there were voices coming from Munich during the international conference and security issues that called for a dialogue with Damascus. At the same time there were elements from the Syrian opposition shelling big cities and other areas in Syria. So you can hardly categorize the opposition in Syria. I think also that America is to be blamed for this because America should have looked at some elements in the Syrian opposition, whereby some reform, some dialogue, some initiative could have been submitted.We are running out of time, more bloodshed is basically happening. So I think Obama should consider Syria a top strategic priority. If the regional powers involved in the Syrian crisis - and Moscow - help change Obama’s disposition towards Syria, I think we can speak of some progress. Unless this happens we have to acknowledge our failure. SC/JR