Is Syria turning into Iran-lite in terms of oppression and persecution of its opposition masses? Is Syria’s case going to prepare the way for the free world to approach the Islamic regime in Iran? And are we seeing the hands of the IRGC and repressive command of the Islamic republic in Syrian authorities and security apparatus’ dealing with street protests and the growing rebellion – be it through direct participation of personnel at various levels, which is not highly likely or through indirect strategic aping of the brutal IRGC/basiji tactics to clamp down.
Parallels are abound as with each passing day and with escalation of the volatile situation in Syria. From the over the top and brutal handling of the street protests to mass arrests of protesters, to persecution of the families of these prisoners. Even the reprehensible acts of collection and arrest of the wounded from hospitals which was a new low seen done by basij thugs in Tehran and other cities in Iran.
We may not reach any concrete answers at the moment. But what’s apparent is many believe the Islamic regime’s fate is tangled with the fate of Bashar Al-Assad and his government. What is certain is that Assad has learned some very valuable lessons in its neighborhood. From how the Tunisians and Egyptians were able to overturn their governments which must have added to his anxiety and also from two other cases where the rulers and people in power vehemently resisted their people’s will and resorted to animalistic crack down. Khamenei’s and his illegitimate government’s acts may not overtly and on the surface appear in the same level of Gaddafi’s stand in Lybia’s case. But this regime has done far worse behind the walls of prisons and detention centers of its intelligence ministry and revolutionary guards.
Perhaps seeing how Gaddafi and Khamenei/Ahmadinejad are still clinging onto power after resolutely shedding much blood has become Assad’s preferred modus operandi in dealing with the situation at home. Little do these petty dictators know that their day is fast approaching and that no government willing to kill its own citizens will have much to stand on and is surely on its last days.
Perhaps the west, willing to deal with the Syrian situation, can develop a template through which it can apply to the other similar barbaric regime in Iran.