Friday, June 02, 2006


As the Assads try frantically to maneuver public opinion back into an 80s frame of mind, with some degree of success one has to admit (albeit the knack of Islamists terrorist cells allegedly working in the country to attack empty buildings is stretching the boundaries of credulity of even the most naïve observer), they are also helping create an environment where all sorts of sensationalist and cockamamie rumors tend to flourish, both in Syria and beyond. Just check out his latest piece of stupidity pointed out by Joshua (please note the two telling “maybes” in the above paragraph):
"Russia is dredging the Syrian port of Tartus, where a maintenance station for the Russian Navy is located. That station has been there since Soviet times. Kommersant learned of this work from Vladimir Zimin, senior economic advisor at the Russian embassy in Syria. Russia is also widening the port at Latakia. That may be evidence that Russia is considering Syria as a base from which to expand its influence in the Middle East. In that case, the maintenance station at Tartus may be converted into a naval base in the future for Black Sea Fleet warships when they are withdrawn from Sevastopol."
Oh yeah, this is so true. Russia is really going to risk confrontation with the US and France over anything related to Syria at this stage. The best that the Assads can get out of Russians, and even the Chinese, these days is their vote at the UNSC, and even this will depend on the strength of the upcoming report by Brammertz. Marwan Kabalan was right in this regard, and Joshua was right in highlighting his article immediately after referring to the above ludicrous report. Marwan is definitely one of the best analysts of the Syrian situation out there.