"The Syrian crisis may or may not have entered its final phase, but it undoubtedly has entered its most dangerous one to date," the International Crisis Group (includes Solana) said.
"Many in Syria and abroad are now banking on the regime's imminent collapse and wagering that all then will be for the better. That is a luxury and optimism they cannot afford."
Washington repeated an appeal on Wednesday for U.S. citizens to leave Syria: "The U.S. Embassy continues to urge U.S. citizens in Syria to depart immediately while commercial transportation is available," the embassy said on its website. LINK
"Damascus/Brussels | 24 Nov 2011
The Syrian crisis has entered its most dangerous stage, requiring urgent attention to issues that the international community and Syrian opposition have largely been ignoring.
The crisis may or may not be in its final phase, but it is now defined by an explosive mix of heightened strategic stakes tying into a regional and wider international competition on the one hand and emotionally charged attitudes, communal polarisation and political wishful thinking on the other. As dynamics in both Syria and the broader international arena turn squarely against the regime, reactions are ranging from hysterical defiance on the part of its supporters, optimism among protesters that a bloody stalemate finally might end, heightened fears of sectarian retribution and even civil war among many, to triumphalism among those who view the crisis as an historic opportunity to decisively tilt the regional balance of power. ..."
read full report here: UNCHARTED WATERS LINK
"This Wednesday could have been the turning point: The Syrian National SNC, in which the opposition groups have joined forces against President Bashar al-Assad, received the accolade. A spokesman for the European Union announced that the EU was "ready to engage in negotiations with the Syrian National Council" as long as he was working peacefully for change in the Arab State.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe called the Council on the same day as "legitimate partner, we want to work with." It was the first time that the chief diplomat of a Western country of the Syrian opposition fully signaled its confidence. And not only that Juppé also spoke out for the establishment of a security zone in northern Syria, in which civilians could find shelter and through which the supplies to the insurgents pursued by Assad should be brought. "This issue needs to be a part of the European Union and the Arab League on the other hand, studied," Juppe said after a meeting with leaders of the National Council in Paris.
The sympathy of Europeans and this means especially from France for a possible war, the Syrian dissidents critical stage win. Even in the case of Libya, it was France that the legitimacy of the rebels in Benghazi early recognized. The diplomatic formality then rang the end of Muammar Gaddafi's one. For the Parisian initiative sparked a maelstrom that gave the rebels political and military support and ultimately caused the downfall of the dictator.
Policy paper on the way toward a better future
It could now run in Syria, hope the dissidents. The next step is to overthrow Assad - again similar as in Libya - to be the foundation of a contact group in the Arab and Western policy makers and Council members meet regularly. The SNC could hope for the participation of France, Britain and Germany, by the Arabs of Saudi Arabia, Jordan , Qatar and Egypt to participate, said Anas Abdah, a member of the Central Committee of the National Council, told SPIEGEL ONLINE.
But before that want to meet in the next 60-100 days, representatives of the insurgents in Cairo to develop a policy paper that describes the path to a better future of Syria. "We will define the characteristics for the period of transition and work out, look how the principles of the future constitution," announces Abdah.This is urgently needed. Because the international community must be able to make a better picture of it, with whom she had to do it on the opposition side."We have plenty of late trying to show the world who we are."
End of August had met Syrian exiles in Istanbul and the Syrian National Council called into being. He sees himself as a "representative of the concerns and demands of the Syrian people". But only on 2 October, the Council adopted a constitution and elected an executive committee. Because of the grave struggle between opposition groups represented in the Council was: Some want to negotiate with Assad's regime, leaning the other strictly from. It even went so far that opponents of talks with Assad earlier this month threw the opposite side of the building before the Arab League in Cairo with eggs and tomatoes.
In the meantime seems to have been established by the Council. Time and again activists went to Syria with signs "The SNC represents me," filmed on the street, in the process and then the message sent abroad that the existing mainly exiles Council will support in the home. The price was high. "26 people were shot, so our advice is recognized as legitimate," says Abdah. He has traveled from the UK to Cairo on behalf of the Council to exert pressure on the Arab League, so this puts pressure on Assad.
Abdah warns of civil war in Syria."Then there will be chaos and a power vacuum. But we are an alternative to the current regime." A change in Syria is certain for him: "The question is, whether for good or bad with us, things will turn for the better.."
"If Syria slipping into civil war, the West must intervene"
Assad gives up or there is a protracted and bloody struggle to Damascus? "We still have a peaceful change of power. But that may change," says Abdah.The Council is in a dilemma: on the one hand, he supported the outdoors in the Syrian army deserters in their fight against organized Assad's troops. On the other hand, the West is currently demanding at least officially still a peaceful solution. The Council raised the specter of civil war trying to persuade the Europeans on this matter . "If Syria slipping into civil war, the West must intervene," says Abdah. The EU should not hinder the free Syrian army in the fight against the soldiers Assad. For if the dictator is eliminated because it was served to all.
Turkish President Abdullah Gul warned that the conflict in Syria, "the whole region into chaos and bloodshed" could draw. The Muslim world threatens "the darkness of the Middle Ages." Syria has reached a point of no return, so Gul. The Turks, once close allies of the regime in Damascus have broken in recent months with Assad . Prime Minister Erdogan wants to establish itself as the leader of the Muslim world and is now one of the sharpest critics of Assad. Refugees and Syrian dissidents give the Turks a shelter." source: SPIEGEL today, Link