What are Syria’s minorities so afraid of?
Time and again, we have been told that Syria’s minorities have, for the most part, either sided with the dictatorship of Bashar Assad, or are trying to stay above the fray; motivated, we are told, by a fear of an unknown future, and what the collapse of the regime might entail for them in a post-Assad Syria.
Putting aside the very apt analogy of a man who finds himself in the path of a sudden avalanche, and frozen in his place by indecisive fear (“jump left or right? do I jump left or right??? LEFT OR —” *crunch*), one has to ask, in very specific terms, just what are Syria’s minorities afraid of? The questions and answers must be specific, far too much time has passed for the vague fear of an “hardline Salafi state” to continue to serve as an adequate explanation for the way most of Syria’s minorities have tried to sit the fence.
Are Syrian Kurds and Christians afraid that villages with Christian or Kurdish majorities will be blockaded, water and communications cut off, and then invaded by tanks and militias?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that they will be attacked by knife wielding thugs as they come out of their places of worship?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that their funerals will become bloodbaths, with funeral goers brutalized by thugs?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that massive walls will be build around their neighborhoods?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that they will be arrested at checkpoints, if the thug manning the checkpoint doesn’t like the town or village on their ID cards?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that a post-Assad Syria will discriminate against then politically, and ban them from holding the country’s highest office?
Are Syrian minorities afraid that their homes will be attacked, and their possessions, which they accumulated over the course of a lifetime, stolen and sold in Shabiha bazaars?
Protection for the rights of minorities? In Syria, seems more like it’s the majority that need protection from the tyranny of the minority.