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April 26th, 2011
09:42 AM ET

U.S. interest in Libya different from Syria

(CNN) – The crackdown on anti-government protesters by Syrian forces escalated in recent days as demonstrators, emboldened by weeks of protests, called for the ouster of President Bashar al-Assad. The crackdown culminated with the raid in Daraa where thousands of troops reportedly stormed the city and opened fire on demonstrators.

The United States is lobbying the United Nations to address Syria's human rights abuses. On Tuesday, the United Nations Security Council is expected to take up the issue, and Washington is seeking to block Syria's efforts to join the  U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva, where members are meeting Friday.

How will the United States react to Syria, and why is President Obama handling the Syria situation differently than Libya?

Ambassador Marc Ginsberg, a former U.S. Ambassador to Morocco and presidential advisor on the Middle East, talks to AM’s Christine Romans and Ali Velshi about U.S. foreign policy response to unrest in the Middle East.

Filed under: Libya • Middle East • U.S. • World
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Dani

    when it comes to Syria Obama chickens out, I think we need Bush back
    to finish this.

    April 27, 2011 at 12:35 am |
  2. Doctor Strangelove

    Who cares? Move on. This is all about our so-called NATO allies [Turkey and Azerbiajan] attempting to extort more money, power and influence. These are the same people who brought you the Armenian/Assyrian/Pontian/Chaldean and etc...Genocides. They were also the masterminds for the terrorist organization called "Ergenekon" ["Mujahadeen aka Taliban aka Al Queada]. 
    These people haven't even come to grips with their past. And, we want them to do what now? 


    If they really want to bring democracy to these countries, then they should read Sir Arthur C. Clarke's book titled "The Last Theorem." That is the perfect instruction manual, suggestion guide etc....

    April 26, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  3. Tony

    Since the dawn of Christianity, Christians lived in the Middle East, the original place from which the prophets and Christ himself came.

    The Assad regime, which is brutal, repressive, and backwards, is however based on a secular system, the Baath ideology. A secular system, such as the Baath regime, ensures the protection of such minorities as the Christians and Shias in countries like Syria and Lebanon. The Iraqi Baath protected the Christians. After the fall of Saddam Hussein, Christians were targeted by Muslim extremists. The number of Iraqi Christians is now negligible.

    The Arab countries have a Sunni majority. The Sunnis in Lebanon are already well financed by Saudi Arabia to create a Sunni Muslim state out of what was once Christian Lebanon. The Sunnis in Syria are the majority amounting to 74% of the total population. Since Syria has always played a significant role in Lebanese politics due to the country's geography and the history of the political system, the fall of the Assad regime and its overtake by a Wahabi Saudi-backed Sunni regime would mean that minorities such as Christians and Shia Muslims would become 10th class citizens. This would lead to an even higher immigration rate from the Christian side, leaving the Levant, which was once the home of Christianity, without any Christians. This would be indeed unprecedented in human history.

    April 26, 2011 at 11:58 am |
  4. waynebernard

    Syria is among the least free nations in the world when measured in terms of both civil and political freedoms according to Freedom House, an American think-tank. Freedom House states that "...there is a growing chasm between the Islamic community and the rest of world. While most Western and non-western countries are moving towards greater levels of freedom, the Islamic world is lagging behind."

    Here's the rest of what Freedom House had to say about freedom in the Middle East in comparison to the rest of the world:

    April 26, 2011 at 11:46 am |