Performance politics

Hundreds of protesters came under fire as they advanced towards the fenced ceasefire line separating undisputed Syrian territory from the Golan Heights, occupied by Israel in the Six Day War of 1967.

The march, led by refugees intent on reclaiming their homes lost to Israel in an earlier war in 1948, was the second of its kind in just over three weeks. Four protesters were killed last month after they breached the border fence.

So, you\’re an opthalmologist who has inherited a bloody and blooded dictatorship from your father.

You\’ve got riots, massacres, going on, your security forces are torturing people to death as a result of the protests for greater freedom.

So, what do you do?

Yup, that\’s right, let\’s have a little go at the foreigners, shall we?

What\’s right and what\’s wrong about the Golan Heights is as nothing compared to the benefits to Assad of having people playing there rather than in the streets of Damascus.

4 thoughts on “Performance politics”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Perhaps. But it is more likely they always wanted to do this but the regime’s thugs were holding them back. Or if not more likely, at least as likely.

    After all, not protecting them, not ramping up the threat of war, not deterring Israel, just makes Asad Junior look weak. The Syrian Army can do nothing because there is nothing they can do. Humiliating for all concerned.

  2. @SMFS – you seem to completely misunderstand the nature of a fear society. Looking weak is exactly what Assad needs right now.

    He is under internal pressure with many of his people becoming dissidents and demanding democracy. He must crush this dissent. But he must also make the case for why he must remain in power and encouraging or creating tension with Israel is how he does this.

    To the people inside his country he points to Israel and warns that if his position is weakened then his country are at risk from Israel. To the outside world he points to the escalation and warns that if his position is weakened then Israel will be at danger from the people of Syria.

    Looking weak while crushing dissent is exactly what Assad needs to survive. I suggest you read “The Case for Democracy” by Natan Sharansky (who knows a thing or two about fear societies).

  3. When the regime turns out ‘spontaneous’ protesters like this, they burn US, UK and Israeli flags and march to the Golan Heights. When they protest against the regime they burn Russian, Iranian and Hezbollah flags.

  4. MikeinAppalachia

    So the latest march to the fence was by those who “lost their homes” in the 1948 attack on Israel? Those shown in the video certainly do not look to be old enough for that.

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