Monday, August 15, 2011

Syria’s Revolution: A Bloodbath the West Cannot (Well, Should Not) Ignore

By Barry Rubin

There’s a real war going on with real massive human rights’ violations, real massacres, and real alternatives at stake. Yet the world slumbers about it. Oh sure, there are expressions of dismay at the lowest level of diplomatic language and cosmetic sanctions. Meanwhile, artillery and tanks are being used directly to kill as many civilian, nonviolent protestors as possible. Those captured are being tortured.

These events make Egypt’s revolution look like a picnic and Libya’s civil war look like a scrum. Yet where is the massive outpouring of Western demonstrators; the teach-ins; the outrage; the international resolutions; the humanitarian action on Syria?

It is a waste of time, mine and yours, to write about double standards. Double standards have become standard. Nor will I inform you by bewailing the front-page coverage, misplaced outrage, and outright slander devoted to the smallest incident in Israel-Palestinian frictions compared to these events. The same applies to the grilling of America for real and imagined sins.

And yet to keep things in proportion we must constantly remind ourselves and others that there are real bloodthirsty dictatorships in the world, willing to stop at nothing, bound by no rules that are either self-imposed by morality or restricted by free institutions. In comparison to these—the terrorist-supporting, the hate-inciting, the consistently torturing, the always lying—is the reason why democracy is the best system and our cause is as just as anything that’s going to be seen in this sad and tragic world.

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