Monday, 25 August 2014

Bashar al-Assad

How Assad helped the rise of his 'foe' Isil

"By 2013, Isil had managed to capture oilfields in eastern Syria. But to profit from these assets, they needed to find a customer for the oil. Mr Assad's regime stepped in and began buying oil from Isil, thereby helping to fund the movement, according to Western and Middle Eastern governments.
Having provided Isil with talented commanders, courtesy of his prison amnesties, and filled its coffers with oil money, Mr Assad then chose to focus his military campaign on the non-Islamist rebels. Every town and suburb held by the Free Syrian Army was relentlessly pounded from the air and ground. A year ago, the regime even used poison gas against insurgent strongholds in Damascus.
Like many Middle Eastern dictators before him, Mr Assad hopes that the West will accept him as the only available bulwark against the very fanatics who he has helped and protected. Put bluntly, he wants to be an arsonist and a fireman at the same time. The question is whether he will get away with this time-honoured ploy."

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