Work together to end violence

Pictou-Advocate-opinion

To the Editor:

During the years 2010-2012, there was a global movement of youthful change. Many protests took place around the world. There was the Occupy Movement. Elsewhere there was the Jasmine Revolution and Arab Spring. Each had varying degrees of impact. The protest in Halifax produced one of the most ironic statements of the global movement, “We have heard your plights now go home and be quiet”. In other parts of the world extreme violence broke out and rage on to this day. Syria, Yemen and Libya are the most known. Of these, Syria has taken a greatest grasp of the global stage.

As we seek solutions to ending the war in Syria there will always be counter solutions and, of course, history. For those who live in the towns and cities of Syria, an end to the violence can not come fast enough. It is at this point where finding blame needs to be put aside and focus on the ceasefire agreements. For those that disagree, they should truly understand that in all reality there is no one that is without blame.

Right now the world needs to look at what is taking place in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya as power vacuums are prolonging violence. Sadly the current government of Syria has a leader that has done an extraordinary amount of harm to the people of Syria. It is truly disheartening to see this man remain in power. To that reality we must ask who is to lead next? Now, if you think what is taking place in Syria is terrible, the power struggle will become even more chaotic when Assad is removed. Another Iraq or Afghanistan will be created.

The best way forward is to keep the current leadership structure in place until the people can peacefully vote him out. How is that done? The complexity is held within the mechanics, the building blocks, the melding of all that is or simply put — the how.

Every country needs to swallow a bit of bravado and take the monumental step of actually working together to end the violence. This will need to have the children as the absolute focal point of the solution. It will need a deep and heavy commitment of ground troops to enter Syria. Tighten the borders of Syria if not completely lock them down. Assad will have no choice but to listen to such a plan.

As for the legality of sovereignty, that issue is put to the side under the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) doctrine. This is the same doctrine that Canada used to bomb Libya. Next, people will ask how long will our troops be engaged in the battle. Well Canada did not leave the European theatre until 1992 so another 50 years is possible. Unless you do not have the courage to actually solve the Syrian war then continue on the path that is currently being taken. In all probability, after fifty years this war will still be raging on and the same solution will be needed.

There is no doubt that Assad must go. So does every leader at some point. Calling for Assad to leave now is not going to help the situation. What is more important is the world powers to actually work together and take control of this war. The capacity is there to accomplish peace fairly quickly. The missing element is the will to do what needs to be done.

What is taking place in Syria is simply the combatants fighting to hold power. We have gone down the path of destruction too far to not work with Assad now. As much as it pains us to do such a thing it must be done because it is the quickest path to peace — without complete and total destruction of the population and country.

As often happens in a dysfunctional and disgusting situation, we must deal with hidden agendas, back room deals, ego and power grabs. There is no lack of such elements as poor decisions are made one after the other. In the end the one who pay the ultimate price — the children.

David Porter
Pictou