Syrian Ceasefire
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Syrian Ceasefire

Why it won't last.

Syrian Ceasefire

Recently, the latest of the ceasefires in Syria was declared. The deal was brokered by the United States, Russia, and Jordan. The Trump administration has praised the ceasefire as a great opportunity to cooperate with Syria in the region. However, the agreement definitely comes with issues that will make it difficult for the agreement to hold (though I hope it does.)

The biggest problem with the agreement is that neither the Syrian government, nor the Syrian opposition, was an actual party to the discussion. Although there are guarantees from Russia that the Syrian government will abide by the ceasefire, there is no true guarantee. Additionally, the United States still maintains the position that the Assad regime must be toppled, though defeating ISIL is a much higher priority. The whole goal of the Syrian ceasefire is to try to temporarily draw U.S.-backed rebels and the Russian-backed Syrian government away from each other so that both can respectively focus on fighting ISIL. Still, without actually bringing the Syrian government or the Syrian opposition to the table themselves, their support for the ceasefire cannot be guaranteed. Additionally, it casts aside the only parties the actually matter in the conflict and demonstrates a callous attitude towards the needs of Syria and the Syrian people.

Another big problem with the deal is that it has left out Iran as a party. Iran, not Russia, is the Assad regime's biggest supporter. Iran currently has many security advisers and forces in Syria to provide support to Assad. As Assad is one the few Shia leaders left in the region, it is in Iran's interest that Assad remain in power. The deal forbids Iranian troops from being near Syrian borders, but did so without their input. By ignoring Iran's role in the conflict, this ceasefire is ignoring the reality of the conflict and is guaranteeing that the Iranian government will be opposed to this deal.

Nearly all of the previous ceasefires have fallen apart in the past. Both the Syrian government and the Syrian opposition claim that it is the other side that violates it. A big issue is the fact that Russia will not be able to effectively punish Assad for not holding up his end. If Assad violates the agreement and Russia protests, it hurts their position as an ally of Assad.

Although most parties involved in the Syrian conflict want to see ISIL eradicated, there are way too many competing parties with differing goals for a stable, workable agreement to be reached. Unlike other Arab Spring conflicts, like Libya, there are too many differing interests in the country and nearly every major country is taking a side on the issue. A workable agreement may be possible at some point, but the current is certainly too weak to hold together.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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