FS editorial – Syria: the barbarism of a doomed regime

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President Bashar al-Assad and the ruling elite of Syria are gaining global notoriety for their bloodthirsty efforts to quell the nine-month uprising against them. According to the U.N., the crackdown had caused the deaths of more than 3,500 people by early November 2011.

But the numbers only begin to tell the ugly story. The regime is pulling activists out of hospitals to be tortured and killed and launching full military assaults on dissidents.

Underlying the revolt in Syria, as in other countries where the Arab Spring has erupted, are the economic hardships and growing inequality accompanying neoliberal “reforms” of recent years.

The regime’s terror tactics have only broadened and deepened the anger against it throughout the country. An uprising primarily sparked by the young and the poorest is now drawing in or gaining sympathy from workers, small business owners, and thousands of other Syrians.

Military officers and soldiers are deserting or actively siding with the revolt in growing numbers. Medical workers have set up secret, makeshift hospitals around the country.

A widespread general strike on Oct. 26 was a critical step in forging working-class engagement in the rebellion.

The viciousness of the regime is not working. The revolution will not be denied.

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