Nytt

Det brer seg en stemning blant syrere om at opprørerne ikke vil vinne. Hva mer er: de vil heller ha Assad fremfor ISIS, den mest ekstreme al-Qaida-gruppen som holder til i nord.  Den organiserte politiske opposisjonen er ved  å spille seg selv ut over sidelinjen.

Så sent som for få dager siden sa opposisjonen at den nektet å dra til forhandlinger i Geneve hvis ikke Assad lovet å gå av. Et slikt krav røper manglende kontakt med virkeligheten. Assad er sterkere enn på lenge. Hvorfor skulle han kapitulere før forhandlinger?

The critics say there is no indication that Mr. Assad is headed for imminent defeat; indeed, he seems to be increasing his grip on parts of the country. So they are reluctantly embracing a scaled-down goal of a transitional government that in the medium term includes Mr. Assad.

The best hope, they say, is to gradually blunt the violence in a Syria that will long remain divided among areas dominated by jihadist fighters, more-moderate elements of the opposition and a transitional government.

Changing course is urgent, the critics say, because as the prospects for the peace talks in Geneva recede, Syria is falling apart. In the north, extremist jihadist groups are terrorizing residents, clashing with rival rebels and establishing a base that poses threats beyond Syria’s borders. Hunger and disease are on the rise. Polio is resurgent. More than nine million Syrians have been displaced from their homes,

Anne Bernard fra New York Times sier det har oppstått et grått sentrum: syrere av ulike avskygninger som er enig om at krigen er blitt selvgående og må stanses. Nesten for enhver pris.

Dozens of interviews with a broad spectrum of Syrians across the country bear out the growth of such a group, who often call themselves the “gray” middle. Many complain that no one represents them in what has become, like the Lebanese civil war that dragged on for 15 years, an international proxy war that extremists and profiteers on both sides have a vested interest in prolonging.

USA synes ikke å være på høyde med denne utviklingen. I stedet for å lede har ikke USA noe svar.

“There is a sense of surreality” to United States policy, said Ryan C. Crocker, a former ambassador to Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan and now the dean of the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. “ ’Assad must go.’ Well, Assad isn’t going to go.”

Mr. Crocker and others say the current approach fails to capitalize on a growing center of Syrians exhausted by the war who have lost their enthusiasm for either side and fear that Syria is becoming a failed state.

Representanter for opposisjonen og regimet møtes på mellomnivå i utlandet. Nylig møttes 170 representanter i Libanon.

Hva slags scenario ser man for seg? Det snakkes om en overgangsregjering. Noen er villig til å godta at Assad blir sittende en periode, før han fader ut. Han kan da stå tilbake som den som reddet Syria fra jihadister.

Andre mener at sikkerhetsapparatet må renses ut. Det er det som er regimets sjel. Skal Syria reddes må det reformeres. Drastisk.

Den organiserte opposisjonen sliter med å bli enig om noe som helst. Russerne utnytter den fastlåste situasjonen rundt Geneve til å fremme Moskva som møteplass.

In the meantime, others are stepping into the vacuum. Russia is moving forward with plans to host the meeting in Moscow with a broader array of opposition figures — some of them controversial — than just the coalition.

In a sign that the Obama administration’s strategy may be shifting, however, a spokeswoman for the exile opposition group, the Syrian National Coalition, Bayan al-Khatib, said Wednesday that American officials had encouraged the coalition to attend, and that some members were considering it. They were apparently overruled.

For mange i opposisjonen er det utenkelig å snakke med Assad. Men man forhandler med fienden, ikke venner. Dette sitter langt inne. Crocker mener USA burde være den som leder an og snakker med folk innen regimet.

“My view, which causes fear and loathing throughout Washington,” Mr. Crocker, the former ambassador, said, “is we really need to be making more of an effort to talk to regime people,” as well as to form direct contacts with insurgents and their supporters inside Syria.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/09/world/middleeast/syrians-and-observers-increasingly-see-assad-as-likely-to-stay.html?pagewanted=2