World View: Russia Relationship with Syria Deepens as West Dithers

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com.

  • Hundreds of thousands protest in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt
  • Convinced that West won't intervene, Russia's involvement with Syria deepens
  • Nicolas Sarkozy faces reelection battle in France on Sunday

Hundreds of thousands protest in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt

Hundreds of thousands of protesters filled Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, on Friday, in the biggest demonstration in many months. When the "Egyptian Revolution" began in January of last year, protesters were united in wanting the ouster of president Hosni Mubarak. After Mubarak was deposed, the opposition groups began to splinter into groups -- the Muslim Brotherhood, Salafists, Liberals and 6 April Youth Movement -- with differing agendas, with each group holding demonstrations from time to time. But now all the groups are united again, after it's becoming increasingly clear that the ruling Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) has no apparent intention of giving up power. Their common demand is the SCAF give up control to a civilian government. Bikya Masr (Cairo) and Al-Ahram (Cairo)

Convinced that West won't intervene, Russia's involvement with Syria deepens

Russia has become the principal defender and supporter of Syria's president Bashar al-Assad, as he continues to massacre his own innocent Arab people after signing a "peace agreement" to buy time. Russia's motives are becoming clearer, now that they've become increasingly convinced that the West will do nothing to intervene in the slaughter. Safe from Western intervention, Moscow is now deploying naval warships on the Syrian coast on a permanent basis. Moscow has exacted a big economic price from al-Assad in return for its full-throated support. In particular, Russia's state-owned energy firm Gazprom is taking control of Syrian oil and gas fields worth billions of dollars. By cynically demanding economic favors in exchange for supporting al-Assad's massacre, Russia is showing contempt for Saudi Arabia and Qatar, who are quite vocal in saying that al-Assad must step down to stop the massacre. Jamestown

Nicolas Sarkozy faces reelection battle in France on Sunday

Polls are indicating that Socialist candidate François Hollande is likely to defeat the incumbent right-of-center Nicolas Sarkozy for the Presidency of France. However, it's not completely clear how the two-part election will turn out. Voters will be able to select from ten different candidates on Sunday, making it very unlikely that any one candidate will get a majority of the vote. The two candidates who get the most votes -- almost certainly Nicolas Sarkozy and François Hollande -- will stand in a runoff election on May 6, to decide the final victor. Sarkozy is complaining that his poll ratings have suffered because all nine of the other candidates are attacking him, and he believes that he'll do better in the runoff election, when only one other candidate is attacking him. France 24


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