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They cannot simply step down, as the family mafia is inextricably intertwinedwith all elements of Syrian political and economic power.
These are some of the inner circle individuals responsible for the brutalrepression:
Maher Al-Assad – Bashar’s brother and commander of thearmed forces, specifically republican guard and 4
Rami Makhlouf – Bashar’s cousin, and the regime fianancier.They call him “Mr. 10%” as he take a cut out of every industry/business deal in the country
Anisa Makhlouf – Bashar’s mother, and key advisor. She hasbeen firm in advising Bashar to crush the revolution, in thesame manner as his father Hafez did
Assef Shawkat – Married to Bashar’s sister, Bushra, deputychief-of-staff of the armed forces
Abdulfattah Qudsiyeh – head of military intelligence andresponsible for loyalty of the armed forces
Jamil Hassan – head of Air force intelligence, one of the keysecurity forces carrying out the brutality
Ali Mamlouk – head of General Security
Rustum Ghazali – head of military intelligence (Dimashq)
Dhu AL-Himma Shalish – cousin of Bashar and head of security
Muhammad Nasif Kheirbek - Deputy vice-president for securityaffair sand a close Assad confidante
Decisions are made as a group and these individuals are the tip of the icebergof those who are responsible for the brutality in Syria.
But doesn't Bashar al-Assad need time to reform the country?
This regime had 11 years to deliver reforms, yet provided onlycosmetic reforms until demonstrations started in March 2011. In fact,even the little relaxation of the police state that occurred after Basharal-Assad’s “inheritance” of the throne (in a republic) was followed byserious repression, imprisonment, and torture of peaceful activists (theDamascus Spring).The regime is a de facto continuation of the one Bashar al-Assadinherited from his father, Hafez Al-Assad. While the president himself changed, the inner circle and the “mafia” running the nation has not.
Even putting 11 years aside, Assad could have complied with therequirements he signed up for in the December 2011 Arab LeagueProtocol. In that protocol, Assad committed to withdrawing troops andmilitary equipment from cities, putting an end to the killing, releasingall political prisoners, and allowing foreign media immediate access toSyria. Assad has failed to compy with a single requirement.
Didn’t Bashar improve the nation?