Thursday, February 9, 2012

Syria in surge

'[I]t is too shocking to ignore. That is why I am so appalled by the vetoing of the draft resolution, tabled by Morocco, which supported the Arab League efforts to resolve the crisis. The resolution did not impose any sanctions. It did not authorise military action. And at every stage we worked to accommodate the concerns of others. There was nothing in the draft to warrant opposition. Those opposed to it will have to account to the Syrian people for their actions and the horror of the unfolding tragedy.'
So writes Damascus-based British Ambassador Simon Collis (above left), in a post published today at the blog of the British Foreign & Commonwealth Office. (IntLawGrrls' prior posts on Syria are here.) Collis' dire post follows another in similar vein, published at the same website last September, which we also quoted.
Collis writes, of course, of the fact that last Saturday 2 of the U.N. Security Council's 5 permanent members, China and Russia, vetoed a resolution that would have ... would have ... well, at least expressed disapproval of the deaths of Syrian citizens occurring at the hands of its own government. As Collis said, it did not require sanctions, did not refer the matter to the International Criminal Court. (See this markup, courtesy of UN Dispatch.)
The double veto was followed by hundreds of civilian deaths in Syria over the weekend and since, and by the closing of the U.S. embassy in Damascus on Monday. (map credit)
The U.S.-funded Voice of America is running a poll asking this question -- intriguing, even astounding, given the source:
Should the veto power of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council be revoked?
At this writing, 60% of respondents say "yes." (Make sure to vote.)
Rumblings of military intervention are beginning to be detected in the blogosphere, leading one to wonder whether Syria soon will become Kosovo redux.

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