The NAM group of 120 countries has expressed concern of unilateral sanctions imposed on Syria by the US and has condemned Israel’s illegal policies.
Press TV has interviewed Jamal Wakim, professor at the Lebanese International University in Beirut about US sanctions on Syria and about the larger geo-political agenda of a US regime takeover that lies behind the Syrian opposition’s call for democracy in Syria. What follows is an approximate transcript of the interview.
Press TV: The NAM (Non-Aligned Movement) member states are saying that they’re against the US-imposed sanctions on Syria and they are for the peace plan. First of all, why do you think they’ve voiced this opposition to the sanctions?
Wakim: Sanctions are not something new imposed by the US on Syria. There were sanctions throughout the 1980s; less sanctions in the1990s; with further sanctions imposed after 2005.
So, Syria is used to these sanctions and used to dealing with these sanctions because its common partnership isn’t to the US, it barely has any economic relations with the US. It has some economic relationships with Europe, but mainly its most important economic partner now is Iran and Iraq.
So, I don’t believe that these sanctions will affect much on the Syrian economy, which is already suffering because of the security situation in Syria now.
Press TV: Also a voice of support from NAM for the peace plan that’s been put forward by Kofi Annan. We are seeing the violence that is intensifying in Syria.
We heard Mr. Bashar Jaafar (Syrian official) earlier on saying just a couple of days that these attacks on Syria have – although they have not been very much or numerous – but the quality of these attacks has intensified in the sense that we’re seeing bomb attacks and roadside bombs, he said suicide bombings – so basically, what are your hopes for this peace plan that is also being supported by NAM?
Wakim: This peace plan is blackmail bombarded by attacks led by groups supported by allies of the US and its aimed at destabilizing Syria and mainly toppling the regime after causing an erosion of its bases of support.
So, there is an ongoing struggle between the regime on one hand and its opponents on the other hand. This is not a local crisis, it has its regional and international dimensions and it is a part of a bigger struggle between the US and its allies on one hand and Russia, Iran and China on the other. So this is how we should understand this.
Press TV: The thing is, when we are looking at the situation in Syria… we are seeing accusations made about the role of foreign countries from outside of Syria getting involved in this, so basically what can an organization like NAM for instance do in this case to help quiet down the Syrian crisis, if there is an effort by some foreign countries as Syria says, to impede in the peace plan?
Wakim: Western countries will keep on trying to destabilize the situation in Syria and it will not stop until either the Syrian regime is able to repel all of these attacks – and this is not the duty of the Syrian regime alone, but it is also the duty of other allies of the Syrian regime because what is being targeted here is not just the Syrian regime by itself, but as I said before, it is part of a bigger struggle, a global struggle between the US and its allies and Russia, Iran and China on the other hand who are allied to the Syrian regime.
So, it’s a geo-political struggle and we need to see it in this way to better understand it. I don’t see it as the opposition calling for democracy. It’s an opposition calling for a new regime that cuts its relations with Iran, with Russia, with China and by the US to redraw the geo-political map of the whole of the globe and the new century. At the core of the crisis now, at the core of this struggle lies in Syria.