Analyst: De Mistura’s Syria Plan Risks ‘Another Srebrenica’
"The outside backers of the rebel forces are not interested in dealing any military blow to Assad because their whole strategy is to keep the status quo as much as they can. The best example of that is the city of Daraa. These backers never supported any potential rebel move to take over the city although it could have been the first capital city of a governorate to fall into the hands of the FSA, which could have made of Daraa a model and built an alternative administration.
The downfall of Daraa would have undercut Assad’s prestige and claim of military prowess but the powers supporting the opposition in the south – mainly the United States, Jordan and the Gulf Arab states are satisfied with the status quo. Since the beginning of the revolt, the West has made statements on the need for Assad to go without taking any serious steps to act on these words, and that was before the emergence of Al-Qaeda and the so-called Islamic State. Now containing the militant jihadists have become the priority, covering up for lack of strategy to deal with Assad in the first place. At the same time, Russia has ensured that Assad’s military machine is well supplied through Syria’s Mediterranean ports and the regime has had a clear strategy of targeting civilian areas to subdue the opposition."