Question about Syria

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,715
SoCal
What do you think is going to happen in Syria in the event that what's left of the Syrian rebels will actually somehow manage to overthrow Assad? Is Syria going to make a smooth transition to Western-style democracy afterwards or is it going to descend into civil war just like Iraq, Libya, and Yemen did after they've experienced regime change? (To Iraq's credit, though, the worst for it already thankfully appears to be over. :))

For instance, do you think that Nassim Nicholas Taleb's analysis of the situation in regards to the Syrian Civil War is spot-on? :

The Syrian War Condensed: A more Rigorous Way to Look at the Conflict



Or do you think that Taleb is simply being a shill for Assad and doesn't actually believe in what he says in regards to this?
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,715
SoCal
Considering that we can discuss the Syrian Civil War here, I really do hope that we can discuss the political implications of this as well. I mean, we're allowed to talk about Hong Kong's politics here, aren't we?
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,715
SoCal
For what it's worth, I was hoping to keep personal political opinions out of this thread and instead merely speculate on what one thinks will happen if the Syrian rebels will actually win the Syrian Civil War. For instance, one might hate Assad on a personal level but still fear that his ouster is going to be even worse for Syria.
 
Mar 2019
1,801
Kansas
For what it's worth, I was hoping to keep personal political opinions out of this thread and instead merely speculate on what one thinks will happen if the Syrian rebels will actually win the Syrian Civil War. For instance, one might hate Assad on a personal level but still fear that his ouster is going to be even worse for Syria.
I think the Syrian people are screwed three ways to hell. No matter who wins they will bring a raft of negatives to the table. There really is no good guy in this conflict :(
 
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Aug 2019
271
United States
Bashar is a tyrant, he is the root of what is happening in Syria. Taleb's analysis is way off the mark - the alternative to a genocidal dictator isn't ISIS, that's just an excuse to keep him in power. I think Algeria is a model for Syria, it's far from ideal but they also came out of a civil war and now have peace and democracy and are pretty liberal country compared to the rest of the Arab world.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,715
SoCal
Bashar is a tyrant, he is the root of what is happening in Syria. Taleb's analysis is way off the mark - the alternative to a genocidal dictator isn't ISIS, that's just an excuse to keep him in power. I think Algeria is a model for Syria, it's far from ideal but they also came out of a civil war and now have peace and democracy and are pretty liberal country compared to the rest of the Arab world.
Democracy might work out well for Algeria nowadays (at least, let us hope so), but in the early 1990s, I fear that allowing democratic elections there would have simply resulted in Islamists winning power and subsequently creating an Islamist dictatorship and abolishing democracy. AFAIK, the Algerian Islamists didn't actually recognize democracy in the early 1990s (other than as a temporary tool for them to win power in Algeria).
 
Aug 2019
271
United States
Democracy might work out well for Algeria nowadays (at least, let us hope so), but in the early 1990s, I fear that allowing democratic elections there would have simply resulted in Islamists winning power and subsequently creating an Islamist dictatorship and abolishing democracy. AFAIK, the Algerian Islamists didn't actually recognize democracy in the early 1990s (other than as a temporary tool for them to win power in Algeria).
At least Algeria had elections, Syria doesn't even do that - if they do it's probably some one-party CCP type stunt. Even if Syria elected an Islamic party to power - that's democracy and they may even lose the following election, it takes many elections for a country to develop its institutions and a culture of democracy over time. That said, considering how religious and ethnically diverse Syria is, I believe an Islamic party (not Islamist) would not be able to come to power, if they do it'd be a weak minority government. If liberals and minorities fear repression under an Islamic-led govt, the way to avoid that is to draft a constitution that protects their rights and a strong judicial system independent of the executive.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
21,715
SoCal
At least Algeria had elections, Syria doesn't even do that - if they do it's probably some one-party CCP type stunt. Even if Syria elected an Islamic party to power - that's democracy and they may even lose the following election, it takes many elections for a country to develop its institutions and a culture of democracy over time. That said, considering how religious and ethnically diverse Syria is, I believe an Islamic party (not Islamist) would not be able to come to power, if they do it'd be a weak minority government. If liberals and minorities fear repression under an Islamic-led govt, the way to avoid that is to draft a constitution that protects their rights and a strong judicial system independent of the executive.
FWIW, I don't have a problem with Islamists democratically winning power in itself. What I do have a problem with is if they try to abolish democracy afterwards and create an Islamist dictatorship.
 

Nemowork

Ad Honorem
Jan 2011
8,459
South of the barcodes
So you dont have a problem with Islamists as long as they act like secular democrats but not if they act like Islamists?

Thats the entire point of their ideology.

Syria is utterly broken for at least the next generation. It wasnt in a good position democtratically in the first place, the complex social and political balance meant that an Alawite of the ruling family had to be chosen, Bashar Assad was chosen because he was a reforming liberal who was popular with the west.
He was doing a good job of reigning in the secret police and freeing up the economy a bit till the drought, the financial crash of 2008 and the war in Iraq stuffed things up.

With the Turks, Saudis and UAE all financing Jihadis to try and filter into Iraq who set up military and political bases in the east the Americans applying political pressure to borrow the secret police to detain and torture people theyd captured in Iraq the country was in a political juggling act trying not to offend either group.

Now the war has come the secret Police are back to having a prime government position, the army is a major political block again except theyre broken up so actual political power on the ground depends on local militias, warlords and Iranian backed groups, theres reconciled rebel enclaves under police government, its a mess.

Getting that lot unified into sensible control will probably take another civil war, trying to get the economy functioning without Russian support will be a Herculean task in itself, the idea of having the luxury of democracy is almost funny. It wont happen for at least a generation now.

The idea of the rebels doing it is hilarious, theres too many ethnic groups who would need to be ethnically cleansed before the rebels could set up a sunni 'ethnically diverse' democracy. Especiallly since Islamic state and whatever Al Nusra/HTS are calling themselves this week wont accept democracy and will slaughter anyone on the rebel side who suggests it.

Which reminds me this weeks Islamic state offensive against Deir Ez Zur seems to have faded out into more of a raid to take advantage of the SAA being distracted in Idlib.
 
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