US says Syrian regime is doomed

A US official has said the Assad regime is doomed and has urged Syria’s opposition to prepare to take control. Meanwhile the UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon has called on the international community to take action to stop the violence.

The US State Department official, Frederic Hof, compared the regime of President Bashar Assad to a “dead man walking,” and said it was difficult to determine how much time Assad has left in power but stressed “I do not see this regime surviving.”

Hof said Assad has “signed his own political obituary” by cracking down on civilians and urged other nations to back UN sanctions against Damascus.

According to the UN estimates, at least 5,000 people have been killed since protests began in March. Speaking at an end of year briefing at UN headquarters on Wednesday, UN secretary-general Ban Ki-moon called for action to stop the continued bloodshed in the country.

In Syria more than 5,000 people are dead. This cannot go on. In the name of humanity it is time for the international community to act,” he said.

But Damascus disputes the death toll, saying the figure is biased and based only on the word of rebels.

Meanwhile, the number of the dead continues to mount with activists saying at least 25 people have been reported dead in recent clashes, including eight soldiers gunned down by army defectors.

Permanent Security Council members Russia and China continue to oppose sanctions against Syria and insist on a peaceful solution to the crisis. They also criticize the West for ignoring the violence coming from the Syrian opposition.

Pepe Escobar, Asia Times correspondent, believes the US and its allies are trying to use the conflict to fuel civil war in the country.

The stakes in Syria are so much higher compared to Libya because first of all they will have to fight a real army. They’ve been to wars in the Middle East,” he told RT.

It’s a smaller country, there is more population. A land invasion is out of the question because it would go all over the place.”