Author Archives: Ahmad Hashemi

About Ahmad Hashemi

احمد هاشمی در سال 1356 خورشیدی برابر با سال۱۹۷۷ میلادی در شهر قم متولد شد. او مدرک کارشناسی خود را در علوم سیاسی از دانشگاه تهران اخذ نمود و در مقطع کارشناسی ارشد در مطالعات آمریکا از دانشکده روابط بین الملل وزارت امور خارجه فارغ التحصیل شد. او در ژانویه ۲۰۰۸ (اواخر سال 1386) به عنوان کارشناس اداره کل تشریفات و مترجم زبانهایانگلیسی، ترکی و بعضاً عربی به استخدام وزارت امور خارجه درآمد. به هنگام اوج گیری حرکتهای اعتراضی مردم در سال ۲۰۰۹ (سال 1388) او به طور فعالانه در اعتراضات دمکراسی طلبانه جنبش سبز شرکت کرد. احمد هاشمی در انتخابات پارلمانی سال ۲۰۱۲ (سال 1391) برای نمایندگی مجلس ثبت نام نمود ولی پس از اعتراض به رد صلاحیت خود توسط شورای نگهبان، با مشکلات عدیده ای روبرو شد. وی به همین دلیل و مسایل دیگر در ماه مه ۲۰۱۲ از کار خود اخراج گردید. از اوایل ماه مه ۲۰۱۲ او شروع به همکاری با روزنامه های اصلاح طلب نظیر شرق و اعتماد نمود. به دلیل داشتن اطلاعات طبقه بندی شده در مورد برنامه های تسلیحاتی رژیم، او به طور مستمر مورد تهدید، شکنجه روانی و محدودیت هایی قرار گرفته و نهایتا با دریافت تهدید به مرگ از ایران گریخت و اکنون به عنوان پناهنده سیاسی در ترکیه به سر می برد. وی هم اکنون به عنوان نویسنده و روزنامه نگار با رسانه های فارسی زبان و بین المللی همکاری می کند. Ahmad Hashemi, was born in extremely conservative city of Qom in 1977. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Tehran and has a Master’s Degree in American Studies from the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s School of International Relations. In January 2008, he joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairsas an English, Turkish and occasionally Arabic interpreter. When the popular uprising began in 2009, he was actively involved in the pro-democracy Green Movement protests. In early 2012 he nominated to run for parliamentary election but was disqualified by the Guardians Council. For this and other reasons, he was summoned and dismissed from his job in May 2012. From early May 2012, he began to contribute articles for the leading reformist dailies such as Shargh and Etemaad newspapers. Because of his classified information with regard to some of the regime’s proliferation programs, Ahmad Hashemi was subject to constant threats, mental torture and restrictions. He fled his country and currently is seeking political asylum in Turkey. In his work as a writer and freelance journalist, he contributes to Persian-language and international media. Ahmad Hashemi can be reached at: AHMADHASH@GMAIL.COM

My take on the U.S. Syria policy and why the U.S. Must Stop Supporting Kurdish Forces In Syria: مقاله ام در ارتباط با سیاست آمریکا در قبال سوریه و شش دلیلی که برای دولت ترامپ باید از حمایت از کردها دست بردارد:

Why The U.S. Must Stop Supporting Kurdish Forces In Syria

مقاله ام در ارتباط با سیاست آمریکا در قبال سوریه و شش دلیلی که برای دولت ترامپ باید از حمایت از کردها دست بردارد:

BY: AHMAD HASHEMI

When the Syrian uprising began about seven years ago, two measures were taken by the former U.S. Administration that further complicated the situation in Syria.

First, former President Barack Obama’s drawing of a “red line” concerning the regime of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria and backing away from it after the Assad forces used chemical weapons in August 2013.

Second, and equally damaging, was Washington’s decision to exclusively rely on and align with the Kurdish-dominated forces including People’s Protection Units (YPG) and Syrian Democratic Force (SDF) fighters in its Syrian policy. The problem with this alignment is that Syrian Kurdish forces closely associate with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) guerrilla fighters in Turkey who are considered a terrorist organization by the EU and the US.

The new US Administration has tried to reverse some of the ill-planned policies of its predecessor. The Trump Administration, with its words and actions, has made it clear that the Syrian regime’s efforts to cross the Obama-era red line of chemical weapons use will not remain unanswered. However, the Trump Administration not only has not altered the policy of relying on one ally but has exacerbated the situation with the risk of confronting its NATO ally, Turkey.

Here are six reasons why it is necessary for Washington to amend its policy in Syria and abandon its exclusive partnership with the Kurds:

  1. To weaken the Assad regime

Washington should change its alliance with the Kurdish-dominated militia because Kurds are not interested in countering the Syrian regime as well as its foreign backers including Lebanese Hezbollah and Iraqi and Afghan Shiite fighters. By focusing on expanding territory and fighting Syrian anti-Assad forces, including extremist as well as moderate rebels, Kurds have helped the Bashar al-Assad regime appear strong. Assad-Kurdish cooperation has recently entered a new phase as the Damascus Government has allowed Kurdish YPG militia to use government-controlled territories to cross into the enclave of Afrin to fight Turkish and Turkey-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) fighters. Kurds have also asked the Assad forces and other pro-Assad militia groups to take control of the Afrin border. Thus, for this and other similar reasons, Kurds by their actions and their stance, are strengthening the Syrian regime, Iran, and Russia. This is weakening the opposition forces as well as evaporating US plans to contain the Assad regime.

  1. To bring Turkey back to the Western alliance

Turkey has a dynamic role in the Syrian civil war. The country hosts nearly 4 million Syrian refugees and is an important US and NATO ally in a troubled region. Washington cannot afford to lose this key ally to supporting Ankara’s main foes, the Kurdish Militia, which Turkey perceives as their greatest security threat. The US support of Kurdish forces in Syria is alienating Turkey and increasing the possibility of a consequential US military confrontation in northern Syria with Turkish forces. Turkey shares a 900-kilometer (559 miles) border with Syria, and Ankara’s consent and inclusion is central in mitigating the dire situation in Syria. Turkey has legitimate concerns concerning the US-backed Kurdish forces in northern Syria who share the same structure, goals, and worldview with the PKK terrorist organization. Ankara is willing to offer logistical and military support to the Syrian rebels as it is keen to see the Assad regime overthrown or at least weakened. Turkey has the second-largest NATO army, and the U.S. should view this as an opportunity.

  1. To keep sectarianism at bay

By backing Kurds and solely relying on them, Washington adds fuel to ethnic sectarianism in Syria, which is a major driver in perpetuating civil war in this multi-ethnic and multi-faith country. The US support of the Kurds, a tiny minority in Syria, and helping them dominate over Arab majority territories, such as Tal Abyad, Manbij, and Raqqa will only perpetuate the ethnic hostility and sectarian division. Some circles in D.C. might argue Kurds are the best option to fight ISIS and other terrorist organizations in Syria and Iraq, suggesting the US should support their expansionist ambitions at the expense of losing its Turkish and Arab allies. However, now that the war against ISIS is almost over, Washington can help Kurds integrate into a more inclusive, democratic Arab-led infrastructure in northern Syria, focusing on creating a unified opposition front against the regime in Damascus.

  1. To reconstruct northern Syria

Kurds lack the infrastructural capacity to help Americans in rebuilding post-war Syria. The US needs strong partners and firm commitments to reconstruct Syria, prevent the reemergence of extremist groups, and confine the Assad regime. In turn, this would help stop the mass exodus of Syrian refugees that has intensified xenophobia giving rise to the far-right populist politics, and providing ISIS an opportunity to infiltrate the West and conduct terrorist attacks. US Kurdish support makes the goal of reconstruction complicated by estranging key allies, such as Turkey, and escalating ethnic strife in Syria. Any initiative based on minority Kurdish empowerment would be interpreted as a foreign plot by Arabs and a security threat by Turkey. Accordingly, an infuriated Turkey would neutralize all U.S. efforts to build peace and security in Syria and further bring Turkey, Iran, and Russia closer on anti-American common ground. Washington does not need YPG Kurdish sectarianism, which does not include other Syrian Kurdish parties. What the U.S. needs is a majority local Sunni Arab approval, Turkish logistic support, and oil-rich Gulf states’ financial commitment to rebuild Syria.

  1. To stop Russian adventurism

Kurds are a vulnerable regional actor in Syria who are not able to counter powers, such as Russia, and prefer to cope and align with different realities in Syria even if that means U.S. involvement. But, at the same time, Kurds accepted Russia’s and Damascus’ presence in their territory as it was the case in the Afrin enclave before Turkey started an incursion. A strong US leadership in northern Syria coupled with Sunni Arab empowerment would deny Russia, Iran, and the Syrian regime, as well as Iranian backed foreign Shiite fighters, access to northern Syria.

  1. To counter Iranian expansionism

Countering Iran’s destructive influence is key in de-escalating conflicts in the entire Middle East. Kurdish forces in both Iraq and Syria, most evident in Iraq, are not willing or able to take on Iranian influence in the Kurdistan region and sometimes see Iran’s presence as a balancing force. Kurds in Syria are not willing to counter Syrian regime forces and Iranian-backed militias. Only an Arab-led alliance of local Arab and non-Arab forces, such as Kurds, Christians, Turkmens, etc., would be able to prevent Iran and its ally, Assad, from penetrating and advancing into northern Syria as the last bastion of hope for defying Syrian regime domination and tyranny.

The U.S. Administration needs to reset its ties with the Kurdish-dominated forces and incorporate them into an Arab as well as NATO ally through a Turkish-led alliance. Only after the establishment of this new coalition, it would be possible to create a no-fly-zone containing the northern part of Syria. Establishment of such a buffer zone – advocated by Turkey since the beginning of the Syrian civil war- has the capacity to prevent consequential Turkish-American confrontation. A buffer zone would deter the Syrian regime from further expanding in the north, deny its allies, Russia, Iran and Hezbollah access, help bring Syrian refugees home and resettle them in secured areas, and abate popular support for Sunni extremism. Washington needs to display quality leadership not necessarily further military presence, and not further Kurdish support and training.


Ahmad Hashemi is an Iranian freelance journalist. He is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in the Missouri State University’s Department of Defense and Strategic Studies, located in Washington D.C. metropolitan area. On Twitter: @MrAhmadHashemi

 

https://politicalinsights.org/2018/04/03/why-the-u-s-must-stop-supporting-kurdish-forces-in-syria/

What Tillerson departure means for Iran. My take on Kalemeh TV (In Farsi). بررسی پیامدهای برکناری تیلرسون از وزارت خارجه آمریکا بر ایران در مصاحبه ام با تلویزیون کلمه

What Tillerson departure means for Iran. 
My take on Kalemeh TV (In Farsi).

بررسی پیامدهای برکناری تیلرسون از وزارت خارجه آمریکا بر ایران در مصاحبه ام با تلویزیون کلمه

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DVokak9zIIE

With Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, (right), Former Iranian Foreign Ministry’s certified Interpreter, Ahmad Hashemi (center) and  the Grand Mufti and the head of office of Caucasus Muslims affairs Allahshukur Pashazade, on the sidelines of 5th International Conference on Palestinian Intifada.president-ahmadinejad-meets-azerbaijani-official

Date: October 1, 2011

Venue: Tehran’s Islamic Summit Conference Hall (Velenjak-Tehran-Iran)

In my near 5 years experience as Iranian Foreign Ministry employee, I attended many high level meetings participated by senior Iranian officials and their foreign counterparts. Some of my consecutive interpretation experiences include sessions with the presence of former Iranian Vice President and former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan.

Fore more photos with high resolution, click link below:

https://ahmadhashemi.net/photos/

 

“İran’daki Azerbaycan Türkleri ve Uygulanan Politikalar”

“İran’daki Azerbaycan Türkleri ve Uygulanan Politikalar”

Oldukça yeni ama etkin ve saygın düşünce kuruluşlarınından “Ankara Strateji İnstitüsü”nün yayımladığı “İran’daki Azerbaycan Türkleri ve Uygulanan Politikalar” başlıklı raporda benimle yapılan söyleşiye de yer verilmiştir.
در گزارشی که موسسه تحقیقاتی “انستیتو استراتژی آنکارا” تحت عنوان “ترک های آذربایجانی در ایران و سیاست های اعمالی” منتشر کرده، مصاحبه با بنده هم گنجانده شده است. در این مصاحبه که بعد از چندین ماه از زمان انجام آن، منتشر می شود از آریایی گری و پارسی گرایی عصر پهلوی گرفته تا شیعه گری دوران جمهوری اسلامی و از جمله تاکید آقایان ادیب برومند (رئیس شورای مرکزی جبهه ملی ایران) و مسعود بهنود بر شیعه گرایی در ناسیونالیسم ایرانی تا تغییر نسبی در رویکرد برخی رسانه های فارسی زبان در اذعان بر هویت ترکی آذربایجان از جمله جایگزین کردن واژه “آذری” با عبارت “ترک های ایران” توسط بی بی سی فارسی در وقایع مربوط به برنامه فیتیله سخن گفته ام.

AHMAD HASHEMI’s Resume

 

 

AHMAD HASHEMI

Vienna, VA 22182

ahmadhash@gmail.com

 

Objectives:
I am seeking a position in translation bureaus, private businesses, international organizations and think-tanks where I can use my talent and skills on translation, simultaneous interpretation, journalism and Middle East studies.

 

 

Educational background
2003 – 2006 M.A. in American Studies

School of International Relations

 

1999 – 2003

 

B.A. in political Sciences

University of Tehran

 

 

 

WORK EXPERIENCE
06/12– 12/15 Freelance Journalist, columnist, News producer

Newspapers and TV

Published Op-Ed articles at different Iranian newspapers as well as contributed to the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Journal of Foreign Policy. Expanded journalism career, after leaving Iran in 2012, by contributing to the Persian-language and international media, and in the last two years, produced news stories for the newsroom of the most popular Persian TV channel, MANOTO TV.

 

01/08 – 06/2012

 

Translator, Interpreter, Protocol Department Expert

Foreign Ministry, I.R. Iran

Accompanied dignitaries, attended meetings and took minutes in official sessions attended by the Diplomatic Corps, translated different official letters and other international documents and performed simultaneous translations at different conferences as Foreign Ministry’s certified interpreter.

 

03/10—05/10 News Writer, Web Producer

Press TV

Was primarily responsible for publishing content and, as one of the writers of news stories at Press TV was obliged to produce 5-7 news stories per day.

 

12/06—03/07 Consultant, Expert

Imam Khomeini Relief Foundation (IKRF)

Dealt with foreign guests at IKRF and was responsible for international calls as well as correspondences.

 

07/06—01/08 Guide, Translator, protocol Expert

International- Iranian Hamayesh Afarinan Group

AND

Ivan Sahar-Foreign Media Service Center in Iran

Accompanied international pressmen and senior researchers and dealt with various guests of Iran’s different organizations and also offered services to international delegations, attending conferences in Iran.

 

09/06—12/06 Researcher

Iranian Institute for Human Peace Security (IIPHS)

Done research and analysis on international events as well as submitted weekly reports to the president of the IIPHS, who now serves as the head of Iranian foreign ministry’s Institute for Political and International Studies (IPIS).

 

11/05—01/06 Consultant, researcher

Sanaray Software Exporting Corp.

As a consultant on international affairs and marketing, accomplished web-based research on global marketing opportunities in the IT field.

 

03/03—02/04 Journalist, reporter, Translator

Young Journalists Club

As a Journalist, translator, and reporter at The Young Journalists Club, conducted interviews and also produced and translated news stories.

 

01/03—01/04 Translator

Parham Translation House

In ‘Parham Translation House’ translated a variety of texts and documents from English, Turkish and occasionally Arabic into Farsi and vice versa.

 

 

LANGUAGE SKILLS
English Fluent, written and spoken
Arabic Working knowledge
Turkish Fluent, written and spoken
Azerbaijani/Persian Native languages

 

آخرین مقالاتی که در داخل ایران و در روزنامه های شرق و اعتماد منتشر کردم ——- My Latest Pieces while in Iran

MY LATEST ARTICLES- ETEMAAD NEWSPAPER -MAY 12, 2012 

معمای طارق عزیز در عراق- روزنامه اعتماد

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MY LATEST ARTICLES- ETEMAAD NEWSPAPER-MAY 17, 2012

همگرایی همسایگان جنوبی از توهم تا رویا- روزنامه اعتماد

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MY LATEST ARTICLES- SHARGH

همه راه ها به اقتصاد ختم می شود- روزنامه شرق

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MY LATEST ARTICLES- SHARGH NEWSPAPER- APRIL 21, 2012

انتخابات برمه، شکاف در سد دیکتاتوری- روزنامه شرق

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MY LATEST ARTICLES- SHARGH NEWSPAPER-MAY 6, 2012

سرنوشت “اليزه” در دست اين سه نفر

 

EXTREMISTS AND CONQUERORS OF SYRIA’S WAR?

Extremists and conquerors of Syria’s war?

First published at: JERUSALEM POST

مقاله ام در رابطه با ضرورت مداخله موثر و غیر مستقیم خارجی در سوریه. استدلال این نوشتار بر این محور متمرکز  است که تعلل در مداخله بشردوستانه هوشمندانه می تواند تنها یک برنده داشته باشد: بنیادگرایان
Extremists and conquerors of Syria’s war?
By: Ahmad Hashemi
After 11 months of conflict and despite recent progress made by the rebels, most parts of Syria are still under Assad’s rule. It is true that the Free Syrian Army (FSA) is gaining increasing recognition, and military and diplomatic strength, promising that a regime collapse is nearing, yet, for a plenty of reasons, neither party is able to radically change the current equation on the ground.
Although the rebels have been closing in on the outskirts of Aleppo and Damascus, the real battle for the capital city has barely begun, and the hard inner circle of the regime’s power has yet to be fully engaged. To win the war, the rebels have to conquer the capital and remove Assad from power, and the battle for Damascus could take months of fierce street-to-street fighting before the rebels reach their final goal.
The European Union has almost recognized Syria’s National Coalition, consisting of major opposition groups, as the “legitimate representative” of the Syrian people, and the US, excluding extremists such as al-Nusra Front, has done the same. Even Russia doesn’t rule out the possibility of the rebels toppling Assad anymore. But all this doesn’t necessarily mean the demise of Bashar Assad is imminent, smooth and easy.
As pressure on Assad mounts, the possibility of dramatic surprises can also clearly not be excluded. Pushed into a corner, Assad and his loyal army, mostly from the Alawite sect, could be convinced that, for the sake of their community, it is time to use their last option and resort to the use of WMDs, and this is why international intervention matters.
The world needs to financially and militarily support the moderate factions within the opposition, and the current lack of resolute determination to take action is horrendous because what is going on in the battlefield is simply a futile war of attrition, and if no foreign concrete assistance comes in favor of the opposition, it can’t win the war.
Exploiting this stalemate, religious extremists would emerge as the sole winners of prolonged fighting, which has the potential to turn into an all-out civil war. Recent indications of al-Qaida linked al- Nusra extremists making progress and winning hearts and minds should be taken seriously by the region and the world.
DESPITE HAVING made some significant advances, the rebels lack the heavy weaponry required to launch an effective assault, and the current impasse fuels the growth of extremist factions and jihadi groups within the FSA, which are detrimental to regional stability and hostile to freedom and democracy. Therefore, while a direct ground invasion needs to be strictly avoided, a quick international intervention, coordinated with the FSA, consisting of an effective and massive air strike to destroy government infrastructure and disable Syria’s war machine, is imperative.
Such and intervention will serve several purposes:
1. To deter Assad’s air force from using its partially ready WMDs against rebels and even civilians. Only an effective and crushing air strike targeting the Syrian air force can cripple its ability to act. According to several sources, the Syrian air force is one of the largest in the Middle East, composed of aircraft provided by Russia and missiles acquired from Iran and North Korea. The Syrian military – believed to having one of the largest arsenals of chemical weapons in the world – has loaded chemical weapons into bombs and is preparing for orders from President Bashar Assad to use them.
2. To thwart the ambitions of religious extremists such as al-Qaida affiliate al-Nusra to take advantage of the chaos created after the uprising to gain the upper hand by showing themselves to be the real warriors on the ground.
3. To reduce anti-Western pessimism, rife among the Syrian people and in the region as a whole, which escalated following the indifference displayed by the US and EU vis-àvis the massacre of Syrian civilians.
4. To set up a role model for other democracy-thirsty nations in the Middle East, with Iran in the lead. This support will, in particular, encourage Iranians to take to the streets and boost their morale to defy despotism and tyranny and claim their democratic and civil rights, dealing a blow to the ayatollah’s regime and its nuclear ambitions.
Encouraged by North Korea’s defiance of international warnings, the Islamic Republic is adamant about producing its Islamic nuclear bomb – a term borrowed from Mohsen Rezaee, Iran’s former Revolutionary Guards Corps commander, who coined the phrase in a private meeting back in 2005 – in violation of its so-called IAEA obligations, as its negotiating team buys time in reaching out to the world.
5. Prevent al-Qaida-linked foreign extremists, mostly Sunni Arabs from Iraq, the Persian Gulf region and North Africa from taking part at the war. A recent report by the United Nations Human Rights Council clearly admits this influx has the potential to create a full-fledged sectarian conflict in Syria. Iraqi Shi’ite militias and Hezbollah of Lebanon, in coordination with their big brother, Iran, are increasingly engaging on behalf of Assad. According to various sources, Lebanese and Iraqi Shi’ites and Sunnis are already fighting a proxy war in Syria.
UNDOUBTEDLY, SYRIA’s fate, and that of Bashar Assad should be decided through ballots, not bullets. Yet, fighting a 42-year-old dictatorship, the mainstream, moderate factions of the FSA need support, in the form of sophisticated anti-aircraft and anti-armor weaponry, to win the war. Otherwise, feeling abandoned by the world, the FSA will be forced to choose the only available alternative.
Although the Syrian people tend to practice a moderate form of Islam, living in peaceful coexistence within a framework of tolerance and relative freedom compared to other Arab nations in the region, there is no guarantee that they would not embrace radical Islam, if they have to, as a last resort. The extremists know very well how to exploit complicated and turbulent situations and display their lethal and inhumane ideology as a savior, as they did 34 years ago in Iran.
TO REDUCE the pro-Assad forces’ resistance, hearts and minds must be won. Besides Syria’s Christian minority, Alawites are the most educated and indeed, the most needed sector for reshaping and restructuring post-Assad Syria, and this sect needs to be ensured autonomy and guaranteed internationally-backed security, free from persecution and likely reprisals.
The world community should try to help Syria not to go from bad to worse by falling into hand of extremists, but rather, become a country like Libya – that is trying to observe democratic values – creating friendly ties with the West and Israel and practicing democracy.
Syria shouldn’t become a failed country like Somalia or another fundamentalist state sponsor of terrorism such as the clerical thugocracy of Iran, both of which would be a nightmare for the region and a hotbed for further violence, extremism, instability and terrorism in the already violence-stricken Middle East.
WHILE THE wealthy, oil-rich Arab states have the capacity and willingness to assume the costs of this regime change, they should be warned to render only their military and financial support, not their destructive Salafi and Wahabi ideology.
Israel needs to remain completely neutral, as its engagement, in whatever form, would be controversial and do more harm than good, giving the Syrian regime a pretext to turn the battle into an Arab-Israeli issue with Bashar as the Arab champion.
The world community has to put more pressure on Iraq, and tightly control and monitor the eastern Mediterranean region. Also, Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki needs to adopt a more collaborative approach in preventing the influx of weapons and jihadis into Syria. He needs to understand the importance of preventing Iran from using Iraqi territory as a transit route for Iranian weapons and IRGC members.
Turkey should be given a pivotal role, logistically and militarily, since its conservative leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan wishes to appear as another Caliph of the Muslim world in pursuit of his Neo-Ottoman policies by having a major role in removing his fierce enemy.
In addition, the Turkey-Syria border is the only practical route for any humanitarian intervention at least, because 1) Erdogan is ready to do whatever it takes to see a once-close ally, Bashar Assad, toppled and replaced with a likeminded Sunni-dominated conservative political structure, 2) northern Syria is mostly controlled by the FSA and 3) those areas are dominated by a Sunni population eager to establish a political structure laid upon ideals of the Muslim Brotherhood, 4) the An- Nusayriyah Mountains form a natural barrier running parellel to the coast between areas largely populated by Alawites who are ready to fight for their survival on the side of the regime, and the rest of Syria.
Therefore, the time has come to take appropriate action. Because with the continuation of the current settings, as the world watches this embarrassing tragedy, the radical jihadi groups are gradually outnumbering moderates among the rebels, suggesting a protracted and bloody struggle could well lie ahead, the final winner of which would be radicalism.
The influx of foreigners raises the risk of fighting spilling into neighboring countries riven by similar communal fault lines.
Only effective assistance to the moderate factions of the FSA rebels can reverse this gloomy process,
 
 
The writer is a former Iranian foreign ministry employee, translator/ interpreter. He is currently seeking political asylum in Turkey and works as a freelance journalist.