Assad is becoming an enigma. On the surface he seems an unlikely candidate for dictator of the year. He seems in some ways at least urbane. Of course appearances can be deceptive but at first sight at any rate he doesn’t particularly malevolent. He looks like the sort of man who would listen to reason instead of which he seems to have been listening to siren voices encouraging him to cling onto power at all costs. I mean, who is he, what makes him tick? Does he hear voices from God? Is he so much in love with being the leader of a great nation that he can’t let go of power? Is he afraid of the consequences of going into exile? There will certainly be a reckoning. As a doctor, which say h is what he is, he would have taken the Hippocratic Oath which would bind him (if he believed in it & if he meant it, to strive to save life) not to take it. Death is so final, I just can’t understand the lack of empathy with people ruining others’ lives, let alone taking lives. Possibly Assad justifies his actions on the grounds that without him being in charge of the country, it, the country would fall into chaos. If that is the case, he may be right. But he cannot believe, can he, that he is going last as long as Gaddafi? King Abdullah of Jordan has urged him to step down. That’s a strange one coming from him. He is in an almost identical position. He inherited power from his father. I must say were I ruling Syria or Jordan, having inherited power, I would do anything to rid myself of it & instead do something which really did do some good, something on a more personal scale. Being a doctor, it would have not been difficult for Assad to do meaningful & good work. All Middle East States seem to maintain expensive armies, very few of them do much with the vast amounts of oil money at their disposal apart from vast engineering projects, prestige projects. Israel is an ever present threat but Arab armies have not really fared all that well against Israel anyway, which has the latest armaments from America including bunker bombs which can penetrate deep into the ground.
Assad cannot last forever, one would have thought. But then it is surprising that he is still there. With all the other events in the region one would think that in the next month or so he, Assad would step down. One can only hope so. And one can only hope that after he has gone, the new rulers will be more accountable & will hold elections in the long run, even if not within weeks.