Chemical attacks and genetic re-engineering

Chemical attacks and genetic re-engineering

Opinion_10_1

By Dr. Khaled M. Batarfi

 

 

AN Algerian follower on Twitter criticized my statements on Sky News regarding Arab governments’ varying positions over the American strike on the Syrian air base from where chemical attacks on the town of Khan Sheikun were launched. In the said interview, I explained that Saudi Arabia, the GCC and most Arab governments, along with Turkey, supported the punitive strike against the Syrian regime and called for greater steps. Required actions include the establishment of safe areas on the Turkish border, no fly zones, and providing US-supported resistance with anti-aircraft missiles.

 
The Arab countries in support of the US move had expressed their disappointment when the Obama administration pledged similar punitive strikes in response to the Ghouta chemical attack, in 2013, then retreated and accepted the Russian offer to transfer and destroy all government chemical weapons, materials and factories, and ensure that they wont be used again. The agreement was broken in 2015, as several attacks were UN-documented. The Obama administration, however, failed the test. It only gave us political protests and diplomatic condemnation. As expected, such weak and coward response has encouraged more attacks and violations.

 
Today’s Arab support for American strike comes in continuation of the previous positions and in the hope of more firm and resolute actions against a criminal regime. Bashar Assad’s policies have been responsible for the death of half a million Syrians, the displacement of eleven millions from their homes and towns, in addition to seven million refugees in neighboring countries and around the world. All thanks to the direct help and support of Russia, Iran, and terrorist groups such as Hezbollah, Al-Qaeda and Daesh (the so-called IS).

 
The Arab countries that remained silent after the latest chemical attack and the US response, such as Algeria, Iraq and Lebanon, have always been confused between their special relationship with the Syrian regime and their solidarity with Arab countries. The most confused of them is Egypt. Its government has issued statements with little relevance to reality and current events. They called “for everyone to put aside the growing differences and strife and focus on ways to get out of the Syrian maze and to push for peace — seriously, objectively and unconditionally!”
The statement, however, did not condemn the Syrian chemical attack or object to the US punitive strike. Such non-committal neutrality goes in line with previous diplomatic positions that meant to please all parties at once — the West and the US, as well as, Russia and Iran, while avoiding criticism of allied Syrian regime.

 
My Algerian critic feels that her country’s position is an enlightening model of wisdom, deliberation and Arabism. She advises Arab governments, “that hastened to support the beating of a fellow Arab country by a foreign government, to re-engineer their Arab genes and enroll in the Algerian political school to benefit from its diplomatic skills.”

 
In my response, I told her that Algeria is a great Arab country devoted to Arab causes and Arab nation. Therefore, the choice should have been clear between the Arab victim and the foreign executioner. We hoped that true Arabs would not fall deaf, blind and mute over the killings of Arab people and the destruction of their country by a foreign-enslaved regime and its foreign allies. The Russian and Iranians have been bombarding cities and their residents for years, while helping and allowing their agent regime to use weapons of mass destruction, and deceiving the world by guaranteeing it won’t.
What is happening in Syria is no longer an Arab affair. Crimes against humanity are of interest to the entire civilized world. The Arab world’s failure in protecting its lands and people has opened the door wide to foreign intervention from all sides. And the support of some Arab governments for a regime that sponsors and uses terrorism against its own people is what brought us to this misery and humiliating weakness.

 
If we, Arabs and Muslims, stood united and obeyed Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who commanded us to support our brethren right or wrong, by helping them when their cause is just, and preventing them from committing injustice, we wouldn’t have needed to doubt our Arabism or reengineer our genes, as my Twitter follower recommended!

 
Dr. Khaled M. Batarfi is a Saudi writer based in Jeddah. He can be reached at kbatarfi@gmail.com. Follow him at Twitter:@kbatarfi