Hands Off Syria!

Reprinted from The Worker, newspaper of the Workers Party, USA, June 9, 2011

The Obama administration is stepping up its threats and pressure against Syria.

On May 18, Obama issued an executive order freezing financial assets of the Syrian President, Vice President, Prime Minister and 4 other Syrian citizens. The order also makes it illegal for Americans to do business with them.

In issuing the order, Obama said that Syria's actions, "constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States and declared a national emergency to deal with that threat."

Obama accuses Syria of "escalation of violence against the people of Syria including through attacks on protestors, arrests and harassment of protestors and political activists, and repression of democratic change."

The day after issuing the executive order Obama declared, "President Assad now has a choice: He can lead that transition (to reform) or get out of the way."

The executive order implements the mandate of the Syria Accountability and Lebanese Sovereignty Restoration Act passed by Congress the fall of 2003 in a nearly unanimous vote.

The "Syrian Accountability Act" follows the same Big Lie logic which the U.S. used to prepare its war against Iraq. Syria is branded as a "supporter of terrorism" because it does not accept U.S. dictates and domination and because it speaks out in defense of the Palestinian liberation struggle. Syria is accused of building "weapons of mass destruction" to cover over the reality that it is the U.S. government which has militarized the Middle East, flooded it with hundreds of thousands of troops, carried out the savage bombardments of Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya, threatened nuclear-first strikes against Syria, etc.

The latest sanctions and threats against Syria are dangerous steps on the road to yet another U.S. war. On May 10, Senator John Kerry (D), head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee warned that any "chance to engage" President Assad is now "lost and that’s the end of it.”

Make no mistake about it. The U.S. government is preparing yet more wars in the Middle East and Syria is one of its next targets. U.S. imperialism aims at nothing less than recolonizing the entire region.

The American people must be active and resolute in opposing every aggressive step taken by the U.S. government so as to thwart its war plans against Syria.

Hands Off Syria!

U.S. Out of the Middle East!