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The Battle for SyriaInternational Rivalry in the New Middle East$
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Christopher Phillips

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780300217179

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300217179.001.0001

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Assad must stand aside? The international community’s ambivalent response

Assad must stand aside? The international community’s ambivalent response

Chapter:
(p.59) Chapter Three Assad must stand aside? The international community’s ambivalent response
Source:
The Battle for Syria
Author(s):

Christopher Phillips

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300217179.003.0004

This chapter examines the positions of the main political actors over the course of May–August 2011. It charts how loose stances on Assad evolved into two camps for and against him, with Turkey's sudden turn on its former ally particularly profiled. With the violence escalating, patience with Assad quickly expired. Over two crucial months, July–August 2011, Assad's allies Qatar and Turkey abandoned him, and several western states, led by Barack Obama, called for him to stand aside. Similarly, in what would prove a key dividing line for the coming civil war, Russia and Iran stood by Assad. While moral considerations may have justified these policymakers' stances, a range of factors, including domestic concerns, personal opinion, ideology, and regional ambition, actually drove their actions.

Keywords:   Bashar al-Assad, Turkey, Qatar, Barack Obama, western states, Russia, Iran, Syrian civil war

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