Is it time for a United Nation resolution on Syria? Whilst world attention has invariably been focused on Libya, the Assad Baathist Regime has been busy murdering its own citizens all around the country. In March, security forces fired on protesters, including at a funeral in Dara. A few days ago, in the City of Homa, thousands of demonstrators were attacked by armed forces. So far, human rights groups suggest that up to 200 people have been killed by the Regime, with hundreds more imprisoned.
This reaction to demonstrators is not new. The Assads have ruthlessly crushed any challenge to their rule. President Assad's predecessor, (his father), Hafez al-Assad, carried out the most horrendous genocide in 1982, when (according to the Syrian Human rights committee), up to 40,000 Sunni Muslims were killed in the city of Hama, in order to crush a rebellion against the Assad family. One commentator described the events at Hama, "as among "the single deadliest acts by any Arab government against its own people in the modern Middle East".
Syria remains a totalitarian state. Its Baathist regime mirrors that of Saddam Hussein's Iraq, with its emphasis on Arab nationalism, expansionism and dictatorship. Dissenters are routinely imprisoned, tortured and sometimes executed.
The regime has funded and sent weapons to terrorist groups around the world - as well as hosted some of the most extreme Palestinian terrorists. Abu Daoud for example, the mastermind behind the massacre of the Israeli Athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics, spent his final years in the country.
Bashir Assad has also formed a close strategic alliance with Iran (Iranian advisers are thought to be in Syria at present, advising the leadership on dealing with the opposition movement).
Like Gadaffi, President Assad will stop at nothing to protect his regime and all it stands for. The desire from thousands of Syrians for liberation from the Baathists – is regarded as treason against the State. Whilst the Syrian Government have pledged to end the 48 year old 'emergency law' (a kind of Assad-Baathist Magna Carta), the reality is that it has been used to deal with protesters – even in recent days.
The United Nations acted at ten minutes to midnight on Libya It now needs to take action to ensure that the Assad regime knows that murdering their way out of this crisis is not an option.