Step carefully in Syria
A protester in the flashpoint Syrian city of Homs throws a tear gas bomb back toward security forces last week
January 4th, 2012
04:00 AM ET

Step carefully in Syria

By Robert G. Rabil, Special to CNN

Editor's note: Robert G. Rabil is associate professor of political science at Florida Atlantic University.

The popular uprising in Syria against the Alawi-led minority regime of Bashar al-Assad poses a serious challenge to U.S. national security in the Middle East.

As it fights for its survival amid escalating violence, the Syrian regime risks not only the deepening of civil strife in the country, but also provoking sectarian strife in the region, potentially drawing in U.S. military involvement. Washington has thus far been cautious in dealing with Syria, favoring strong words and sanctions against the regime and supporting Arab efforts to stop the violent military crackdown. But this could change as conditions in Syria deteriorate.

The recent arrival in Syria of Arab observers, as part of a Syrian-endorsed Arab League plan to stop the violence, has been met with mixed emotions. Syrian opposition members rejected the plan, which was mediated by Iraq, on the grounds that it will give the bestial regime another chance to continue its brutal policies.

Read Rabil's full opinion piece in CNN's Opinion section

Filed under: Assad • Diplomacy • Foreign Policy • Opinion • Syria
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Cleeland

    killing your own people only fans the flames of hatred.

    Revenge leads to hatred and hatred leads to suffering.

    January 5, 2012 at 8:32 am | Reply
  2. henrycavill

    Your protestors are drugged! That's why they are showing behaviors of hyperactivity, negative behavior and aggression. These are chemical tools used by Mican companies to induce their desired behaviors. Read more:

    You will learn know how to control the protests in your country and initiate a democratic peaceful process from

    January 4, 2012 at 4:50 am | Reply

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