Sunday October 18, 2015
Seven Important Points:
1) While Hafez Al-Assad was indisputably in power, his son was not groomed for succession, and was basically parachuted out of his London Ophthalmologist practice into Damascus. There he immediately became a puppet of the Alawite Mukhabarak, something he eventually managed to partially minimize.
2) In the original protests, Assad initially attempted negotiations, but, partly due to ingrained behavior and partly due to the quite considerably regime casualties even in the "peaceful" phase, supporters of a "forceful" approach within Syrian security won out, and attempted to solve the issue by force.
3) Temporarily, this put Assad himself between all chairs. The opposition viewed him as a traitor (due to the security organization being very violent despite orders to the contrary) and the security state himself viewed him as a weakling due to his non-violent orders.
The American assistance that "Assad must go", as a precondition of entering any negotiations was, under that background, seen as sheer bad faith by the Russians. Assad could be utilized as a tool to rein in the Syrian Mukhabarat, and he was/is certainly more controllable/civilized then the people actually running the various Mukhabarats, removing him would achieve nothing, other then the Mukhabarat fighting completely gloves off for its own survival.