Assad’s best quotes

3 Mar

President Bachar al Assad gave an interview to Sunday Times sunday 3rd march 2013. One can try to read the full transcript released on SANA website, the official Syrian news agency. We selected the best quotes so the genius of the man can appear in its fullness

You cannot make a plan that is based on dialogue with somebody who does not believe in dialogue.

A normal life

The other aspect of the dialogue is that it opens the door for militants to surrender their weapons and we have granted many amnesties to facilitate this. (…) some have surrendered their weapons and they live now their normal life.

If you want to talk about the opposition, there is another misconception in the West. They put all the entities even if they are not homogeneous in one basket – as if everything against the government is opposition.

This one is a bit hard to understand without the context of Assad’s policy. See, Assad has at his disposal some “opposition” who are ready to dialogue with him and to keep him in power. He also released djihadists from his prison so they can infiltrate the opposition together with Mukhabarat and Shabihas and make them look like genuine terrorists. This is how Assad can actually implies that everyone against the government are not opposition and every “opposition” is not necessarily against the government.

We can engage in dialogue with the opposition but we cannot engage in dialogue with terrorists

Opposition groups should be loyal and patriotic to Syria

It’s called democracy

The events of 11th of September were not committed by lethal aids. It was the application of non-lethal technology and training which caused the atrocities.

Clearly Assad is not aware that 9/11 was an elaborated plan created by the CIA to invade Iraq (although US invaded Afghanistan instead)

What is beyond hypocrisy is when you talk about freedom of expression and ban Syrian TV channels from the European broadcasting satellites;

Would they broadcast “Homeland”?

Beyond hypocrisy is when you talk about democracy and your closest allies are the worst autocratic regimes in the world that belong to the medieval centuries. This is hypocrisy!

(Or speaking about secular Syria when you are allied with Islamic Iran and Hizbullah party of God)

Having legitimate needs does not make your weapons legitimate.

Hopefully Assad is not going to say that in a meeting with Hizbullah leaders.

As with any other sovereign state, we will not negotiate with terrorists.

(Sarkozy may have said that… or was it Bruce Willis?)

Sunday Times: Critics say real and genuine negotiations may be the cause of your downfall and that of your government or regime, and that you know this, hence you offer practically impossible scenarios for dialogue and negotiations?

President Assad: Actually, I don’t know this, I know the opposite. To be logical and realistic, if this is the case, then these foes, adversaries or opponents should push for the dialogue because in their view it will bring my downfall.

One has to admit this one is pretty good. Some killers do have logic

Friendship:

We have friends and we discuss our issues with friends, we listen to their advice but at the end it is our decision as Syrians to think or to make what’s good for our country.

Only Syrian people can tell the President: stay or leave, come or go. I am just saying this clearly in order not to waste the time of others to know where to focus.

The problem with this government is that their shallow and immature rhetoric only highlight this tradition of bullying and hegemony. (…) This government is acting in a naïve, confused and unrealistic manner. If they want to play a role, they have to change this; they have to act in a more reasonable and responsible way, till then we do not expect from an arsonist to be a firefighter!

(Assad was here speaking about the British government)

Since day one in this crisis nearly two years ago, we have said we are ready for dialogue; nothing has changed. We have a very consistent position towards the dialogue.

Actually this is kind of true: Assad is calling for dialogue since 2001, looking for someone to dialogue with since that date

When you have a product that fails in the market, they withdraw the product, change the name, change the packing and they rerelease it again – but it is still faulty.

Assad is giving a lecture to 1st year business school students (or he is drafting a new constitution)

When you talk about thousands of victims, we see thousands of families who have lost loved ones and who unfortunately will grieve for many years to come. Nobody can feel this pain more than us.

We cannot talk about the numbers without their names. People who are killed have names.

And people who have names are killed (Mukhabarat laughing)

Milk Shake

President Assad: why did they die? Where and how were they killed? Who killed them? Armed gangs, terrorist groups, criminals, kidnappers, the army, who?

Sunday Times: It is a mix.

I’m not in the blame business

Terrorists are.

I have a constitutional responsibility to keep Syria and her people safe from terrorists and radical groups

Actually, he does not as no such thing appear in the 2012 Syrian constitution.

You have to worry about the Middle East because we are the last bastion of secularism in the region.

Lol

We were the first in the region to deal with such terrorists who have been assuming the mantle of Islam. We have consistently been warning of this, especially in the last decade during the invasion and occupation of Afghanistan and Iraq. The West is only reacting to the situation not acting. We need to act by dealing with the ideology first. A war on terror without dealing with the ideology will lead you nowhere and will only make things worse.

Assad tried to warn but Bush would not listen

I am sure they know what I mean

Sunday Times: What is your message to Israel following its air strikes on Syria? Will you retaliate? How will you respond to any future attacks by Israel especially that Israel has said that we will do it again if it has to?

President Assad: Every time Syria did retaliate, but in its own way, not tit for tat. We retaliated in our own way and only the Israelis know what we mean.

Sunday Times: Can you expand?

President Assad: Yes. Retaliation does not mean missile for missile or bullet for bullet. Our own way does not have to be announced; only the Israelis will know what I mean.

Sunday Times: Can you tell us how?

President Assad: We do not announce that.

Maybe I know him

Sunday Times: I met a seven year old boy in Jordan.

President Assad: A Syrian boy? 

Sunday Times: A Syrian boy who had lost an arm and a leg to a missile strike in Herak. Five children in his family had been killed in that explosion. As a father, what can you say to that little boy? Why have so many innocent civilians died in air strikes, army shelling and sometimes, I quote, ‘Shabiha shootings?’

President Assad: What is his name?

Sunday Times: I have his name…I will bring it to you later.

As a father of young children, I know the meaning of having a child harmed by something very simple.

Assad clearely cares for his children, just like his father

Whenever you have conflicts, you have these painful stories that affect any society.

War is such a horrible thing

So instead of worrying about yourself and your family, you should be worried about every citizen and every family in your country. So it’s a mutual relationship.

It’s a relationship, it’s mutual… it’s a mutual relationship!

We have never, and will never, discuss our armaments with anyone. What the world should worry about is chemical materials reaching the hands of terrorists. Video material has already been broadcast showing toxic material being tried on animals with threats to the Syrian people that they will die in the same way. We have shared this material with other countries.

Israeli style

Sunday Times: I know you are not saying whether [the chemical weapons] are safe or not. There is concern if they are safe or no one can get to them.

President Assad: This is constructive ambiguity.

Political answering

Do not expect a politician to only say yes or no in the absolute meaning.

The man with a plan

We have a plan and whoever wants to deal with us, can deal with us through our plan. This is very clear in order not to waste time.

Decision making

In Syria, we took two decisions. The first is to make dialogue; the second is to fight terrorism.

Placing the Nation above the family

Sunday Times: How shaken you were you by the bomb that killed some of your most senior generals last summer, including your brother-in-law?

President Assad: You mentioned my brother-in-law but it is not a family affair. When high-ranking officials are being assassinated it is a national affair.

President Assad: There was the case of the British journalist who managed to escape.

Sunday Times: Alex Thompson?

President Assad: Yes. He was lead into a death trap by the terrorists in order to accuse the Syrian Army of his death.

Thanks Alex for the propaganda material. (Alex is already familiar with this blog as we analysed his story before: Alex Thomson claims he was trapped by Syrian rebels: an ideology that is named negationism)

That’s why it is important to enter countries legally, to have a visa. This was not the case for Marie Colvin. We don’t know why and it’s not clear.

Informed sources say she did not like the visa colour

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