If Assad is ousted, radical Islamists will take over Syria – Russian MP
In a recent Web article, Aleksey Pushkov wrote that such a scenario would be almost certain to take place if Assad were ousted, as it is well-known that radical Muslim groups are operating inside Syria: “And instead the secular rational state that we had in Syria under Assad, where all ethnic and religious groups lived in peace and accord, we will get a second Iraq.”The Russian politician went on to argue that Russia had repeatedly warned Western states, who are blinded by “the narrowness of their minds” and political calculations, and are incapable of heeding such warnings. There are no guarantees that whoever replaced Asad would not immediately turn their guns against the United States, even though the Washington is actively aiding rebel forces, Pushkov said. He cited the current situation in Libya as an example, claiming that Libyans showed no gratitude for America’s role in the overthrow of the Muammar Gaddafi regime. “Yes, from Libya to Syria the insurgents can demand support, weapons, money, ground invasion and air force operations from the United States, they are ready to use all this to seize the power in the country, but the majority, if not the absolute majority of population in these countries have no good feelings whatsoever towards the US,” he wrote. He went on to explain that US officials mistook their connection with the small group that came to power in post-Gaddafi Libya for the backing of the country’s people. Those relationships have further frayed, with many Libyan families losing family members in US and NATO military actions, the Russian MP said.The parliamentarian also accused the West of a double standard in protecting activists and artists who attack Islam, as happened with the American-made film ‘Innocence of Muslims’ that recently sparked widespread protests and violence in the Muslim world. “This has nothing to do with freedom of speech. The freedom of speech is not covering a lot of other things that are considered banned in the West. Otherwise they would not be so eager in attempts to put Julian Assange in jail,” Pushkov said. “Attacks on Islam and its sacred things – this is not the freedom of speech but the freedom of hatred,” he wrote.