A former VFP board member writes:
No doubt Assad is a scumbag and a murderer. But those against him (Al Nusra and ISIS) are too. So why do you keep harping on this? What is it you think VFP should do about this? In my view we need to get the US the hell out of there, since US bombing only fuels the fire. Every day you harp on this, and it gets tiresome.Andy responds:
- Thanks for saying that Assad is a “scumbag and murderer.” Several who post on vfp-all are overt supporters of the fascist dictator. We see a lot of forwarded posts here from a group called the “Syria Solidarity Network”. That group explicitly supports the scumbag-murderer. You can see that easily at their website. At the recent UNAC conference, which our vice-president reported so positively on, there were several speakers from groups that openly support the scumbag-murderer, including the Syrian-American Forum, ANSWER, IAC, FRSO.org and others. Some of these folks have travelled to Syria to endorse the fraudulent elections last year or otherwise try to legitimize Assad. You are right. Assad is a tyrannical bastard. VFP should be clear about that. Code Pink has denounced Assad’s war crimes. We should too. We do not have to choose between Assad and US Imperialism.
- You ask what should VFP do about Syria, the bloodiest war on the planet. Here’s what I think we should be doing: We often issue VFP Position Statements. We should issue a position statement that includes the following:
- VFP urges the resumption of an international conference on Syria, including the parties to the conflict, Russia, Iran, and the US, and others, following the guidelines of the Geneva I protocol, which calls for a transitional government, a ceasefire, and a withdrawal of all foreign fighters.
- VFP urges the United Nations Security Council to put enforcement mechanisms in place to support the existing Security Council resolutions for full access by international aid agencies bringing food and medical aid to all parts of Syria and its resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons in Syria including chlorine gas.
- VFP urges the US government to conduct serious bilateral discussions with Russia and Iran seeking to find a negotiated end to the war. We recognize that the US still has considerable bargaining power with Russia over issues of NATO expansion and economic re-integration, and considerable common interest in stopping the spread of fanatical ideologies. We recognize that the pending multiparty nuclear agreement with Iran could lead to normalization of US-Iran relations, including a settlement of the Syrian war.