Sunday, March 20, 2005

Commander of People's Army demands End to Baath Pan Arab Leadership

New bits added at end (21 March 2005)
Andrew Tabler of Syria Today, just alterted me to this interesting new development announced by Ayman Abdulnour's "All for Syria," newsletter.

Syria: an investigation committee with leader of the people's armySyria, Politics, 3/19/2005

The Syrian "all for Syria" website said that the regional leadership of the Baath party has formed a committee to investigate the leader of the People's Army lt. gen. Ibrahim al-Ali. General al-Ali, during an interview on Syrian TV, called for the abrogation of the Baath Party Pan Arab national leadership of the Baath Party, which has two leaderships: the Regional and National.

The website said on Friday that "the Regional Leadership of the Baath Arab Socialist Party issued a decision to form an investigative committee to look into the remarks of Lt. gen. Ibrahim al-Ali (the commander of the people's army, who also has the rank of Minister, a title confered on the position when the Baath party assumed power in Syria in 1963). Al-Ali's statement was made during an interview on the popular TV show, "Madarat" ( circles), a program hosted by Nidal Zaghbour who is also a secretary for the Baath party group in the Syria Radio and TV station.

The news bulletin "all for Syria" added that the investigative committee is composed of the chairman of the party's military committee Lt. Gen. Mustafa Tlass, chairman of the party regional party preparatory committee Ahmad Dargham and the chairman of the regional organizational office Ghayyath Barakat.

Al-Ali, who is also member of the Party's central committee, not only demanded the abrogation of the party's pan Arab Leadership, but also accused the party's regional leadership of being frozen.

It is not clear whether this is important. The People's Army is some militia group of doubious importance. We shall see if this is a tempest in a tea pot or more.

Ibrahim Hamidi writes in Al-Hayat (20 March 2005) that the exicitement caused al-Ali is a sign of tension caused by the Lebanon debacle. He points out that the substance of al-Ali's remarks are nothing new. Information Minister Dakhlallah called for the elimination of the "National Leadership" of the Baath before he became minister. some thought his remarks would lead to his being removed as editor-in-chief of the Baath newspaper, his position at the time. Instead he was appointed Minister.

Evidently, the Baath Party confress is still due to be held in June, according to Hamidi's article. Party elections should begin "next month." As I reported in an earlier article, the Baath Party hold two tiers of free elections, each of which takes aproximately three weeks to complete, before the new Regional Baath Leadership Council is appointed from the winners, by the President.


At 3/20/2005 07:00:00 AM, Anonymous Ghassan said...

Bashar and his cronies are following the same steps that another dictator (Saddam) followed! Killing or imprisoning anybody that criticizes a dictator does not work and never worked! Sooner or later, the statues of the dictator will fall and he will be found hidden in a hole! Dictators and their cronies are the only beneficiaries of oppression. No wonder more than a million Syrian go to Lebanon for work!

At 3/20/2005 01:08:00 PM, Anonymous NeoDude said...

And I wonder what type of theater would be needed to produce your entertainment hole of freedom?

War Propaganda and the Capture of Saddam Hussein

At 3/21/2005 08:38:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cool down, man. The Syrian authorities have ordered an investigation. They may actually find that Al-Ali is right, and send a message to the Baath Party, with a mandate for radical changes at the upcoming big meeting. I am old enough to recommend the return of the no-nonsense National Bloc of Quwwatly to the Syrian political scene, and I predict that the National Bloc can beat an improved Baath Party hands down.
But, the way Josh is reporting, I do not see that Bashar is planning to keep the old system going.

PS: NeoDude, excellent info through your links.

At 3/21/2005 07:01:00 PM, Blogger KNL said...

I wish somebody would call for an end to pan Dictator visits and summits too.


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