[Marxism] Geneva Conference

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Tue May 21 07:56:21 MDT 2013

On 5/20/13 11:29 PM, Peggy Dobbins wrote:
> Interesting FT today reports Qatar and Saudis competing to pour
> support to Assad's opposition. So guess its more about competing for
> profits from pipelining than demo-crat (people rule, which people?)vs
> anti-imperial ideologies

This is very likely the article referred to above:


However, there is no mention of "competing for profits". Qatar in fact 
was favorably disposed to al-Assad until it appeared that he was in 
danger of being toppled.

"For Sheikh Hamad, the 61-year-old emir who has ruled Qatar since 1995 
after deposing his father, the road to Damascus has involved a 
spectacular U-turn. It wasn’t long ago that Bashar al-Assad and his wife 
Asma were regular visitors to Doha, as guests of the emir and his second 
wife, Sheikha Moza. Qatari institutions were big investors in Syria, 
with a $5bn joint holding company set up in 2008 to develop everything 
from power stations to hotels. The emir also championed the 
international rehabilitation of Assad during his gradual ostracisation 
by the US, Europe and his Arab peers; Sheikh Hamad was instrumental in 
restoring Syrian relations with France in the years before the uprising, 
when he counted the former president Nicolas Sarkozy as a friend. Back 
then Syria was part of an alliance – with Iran and Lebanon’s Hizbollah – 
that seemed on the ascendant, and Qatar, with typical pragmatism and 
opportunism, saw a chance to ride the wave as well as to moderate 
Assad’s policies."

All of these outside powers from Russia to Qatar are looking at Syria 
from the standpoint of Metternichian "interest". I find it singularly 
depressing to see the "anti-imperialist" left making common cause with a 
pig like Putin as if this was "defending the USSR" in 1941.

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