It may well be your turn tomorrow
Really, I cannot believe my ears. I was able to imagine the situation of our jails and detention houses, but I had assumed that they had been modernized and upgraded to offer a humane life.
It seems that the situation is exactly the opposite. I am listening with astonishment to what our colleagues who have just been released from Silivri are saying.
Okay, the prison does not have the comfort of a hotel. And those who are managing those places cannot be considered trained managers, but really? What is this cruelty? What kind of a treatment is that?
Compared to Western standards, Silivri has almost become a torture house. Moreover, Silivri is right in front of our eyes, imagine what other prisons are like?
There is nobody in charge of health, there is no food distributed, and there are no measures for helping people to keep their sanity.
It is a shameful situation.
Calculations about al-Assad proven wrong
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has shown that he is not “a leader who would be toppled in a few months.” He has been able to use his cards very efficiently and “for the moment” he has been able to turn the situation to his favor.
He leaned on the trio Iran-Russia-China and he was able to deflect, to “some” extent, both the internal opposition and external pressure. Other important gains of al-Assad were domestic based. One of them was that because the opposition groups were scattered and could not move in a unified way, they were consequently unable to gain external support. Another one is the support provided by Kurdish and Christian segments. The fear of both segments is that radical religionists will take power after al-Assad. To tell the truth, al-Assad for them is “the lesser of two evils.”
It is no small deal that first Kofi Annan and then the CIA chief have come to Ankara. Also it is no small deal that many calls from European capitals to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan are coming, asking, “What do you plan to do?” Turkey is the key country on the topic of Syria.
But somehow, with Turkey leading, those who want the al-Assad administration to go are in a difficult situation. Because the Syrian opposition proved to be more scattered and segmented than expected. When they were not reliable enough, they were not able to obtain the necessary arms and financial support. And in this case, al-Assad is slowly sweeping away the internal resistance. He is taking back one by one the cities the opposition had captured. Nowadays, its fifth major operation is almost coming to an end and soon there will be almost no resistance point left. Well, what will happen next?
It is an extremely difficult situation for al-Assad. It is impossible for him to be at ease from now on. He is bound to rule a Syria that is constantly stirred up. A Syria in which there will be attempted provocations from all sides, in which there will be attempts to smuggle in weapons. In the past, the life expectancy of the al-Assad government was a few months, now it has become a few years.
Ankara is in a difficult situation also. Turkey does not want to be in a position where it is helping topple a neighboring country’s government. For this reason alone, it has not provided weapons and financial aid to the opposition. For this reason, opposition forces criticize Turkey fiercely. Washington, on the other hand, wants to use Turkish soil at all costs.
Turkey is looking for a new approach now. There is a thin, long road ahead of us. Al-Assad will go one day, but how this will happen is unknown.