Yesterday we where met with information that the Syrian regime had accepted the terms of the Arab League (and here). But today the killing continues. What are we to make of this? Well, it is not the first time that Bashar al-Assad promised to stop shooting at protesters. It is most likely that the increasingly isolated regime, pressured by economic sanctions is playing for time.
If the Syrian regime would accept and implement the terms laid out by the Arab League this would most likely spell the end of the regime. Inside the regime this could only be seen as weakness, opening up for a coup d’etat from those hardliners that have pushed for more and harder action against the protests. Protesters would see this, the withdrawal of tanks and troops, the end of violence and freeing of political prisoners as a victory. A victory would energize them. A victory would open up for more demonstrations and the possibility of the spreading of protests to Damascus and Aleppo. A victory, an end of violence would urge more people to take to the streets demanding the end of the regime.
This is why the Assad regimes acceptance of the demands of the Arab League is as credible as all those reforms the regime has promised and those they claim they have ‘implemented’. Window dressing. For the Arab League this will be a loss of face. The only why to remedy this is to do to Syria what the Arab League did to Libya – suspension as have been recommended by the Arab Parliament on 20 september 2011. If such a move is implemented the support of Russia and China would likely start to crumble. This is why the Arab League proposal either why is the beginning of the end for the regime of Bashar al-Assad.