If Russia can bomb to save Assad, US and West can also bomb to finish Assad26 September 2016 Editorial Desk
Syria is a stunning shame on humanity as the killing of civilians in besieged Syrian city of Aleppo escalated over the past two days. President Bashar al-Assad announced new military offensive to regain the eastern part of the city, which is in rebel hands. Russia have intensified air strikes using powerful incendiary weapons and bunker-busting bombs in the rebel held areas where shortage of food and water is poised to create the biggest human crisis from death and starvation. It appears that death of innocents become just excuses to inflict more deaths and there is a growing fear that as the world witnesses the tragedy in silence the international community is drawing closer to a new World War.
A ceasefire that was brokered by USA and Russia only two weeks ago essentially to open a humanitarian corridor to bring food to the besieged city immediately collapsed as Syria and Russia blamed the USA for failing to fulfil obligations. The flaming of an aid convoy last week, which was on move with big UN markings all over to Aleppo, gave the necessary excuse to Russia and Syria to return to war.
As it appears that Syria and its major allies -- Russia and Iran now believe that a military victory in Aleppo is possible when the USA has no appetite to intervene militarily in the ground. They believe a military victory in Aleppo will decide the fate of Syria war. It will evict rebels to countryside and allow Bashar al-Assad to strengthen his position in cities. The attack on the food convoy gave them the pretext to go on the new military offensive as the USA looks on helplessly with the clear sign that until November election there will be no change in US policy about Syria.
The USA is no more a trusted leader of the free world and more so to the Syrian people who see they have been betrayed by the Obama administration which had earlier inspired them to revolt against Bashar al-Assad and now abandoned. Now when Russia, the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and Hizbullah fighters are destroying the free Syrian Army and others, Washington is appeasing Moscow as the global community see a helpless Kerry is courting Lavrov.
More than 200 people died over the past two days. Food and water are now additional weapons. UNICEF sources said air strikes in Eastern Aleppo stopped the repair of a water pump, which supplies water to the residents. In reply rebels have stopped another pump, which supply water to government held areas. It appears diplomacy has hardly any chance now as the Syrian government and allies are out to end the war militarily.
It is clear that Russia is taking full advantage of the weakness of US and Western allies and bombing directly to save Assad who has no army strong enough to fight and save him. The US and the West should make clear that they will bomb to finish Assad. But unfortunately the US and the West playing safe although they feel strongly about killing going on in Syria. President Obama does not know how to deal with Russian bluff. Certainly there are ways for punishing Russia.