In comments today to reporters at the UN offices in Geneva, UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura publicly offered to go to eastern Aleppo and personally escort the fighters of the al-Qaeda-allied Nusra Front out of Aleppo and to safe territory.
Mistura presented the move as an opportunity to end the humanitarian disaster in Aleppo, and the offer is being heavily publicized as a challenge to Russia to stop cooperating in Syrian airstrikes against that part of the city, with the idea that this is an easy alternative. Mistura claimed that the ongoing war would destroy eastern Aleppo totally by Christmas.
At the same time, Mistura’s offer to lead the Nusra fighters out of Aleppo appears to be materially identical to Russian-backed offers from the Syrian government for Nusra to withdraw from the city and be given safe passage to other Nusra-held territory. The only real difference is that Mistura would go along with them.
Russian officials said they were interested in studying the proposal, but the big sticking point is Nusra itself, which has shown an unwillingness to consider withdrawing from the major city,. and seems to be holding out for another ceasefire they can use to launch a counter-attack.
4 thoughts on “UN Envoy Offers to Personally Escort Nusra Front Out of Aleppo”
We all need to thing about this. What can any government do — short of annihilating all life — to a terrorist group that takes control of a heavily urban areas with some useful geographic boundaries, like rivers, or hills that can be defended? What would a US government do in such a case? I remember when, in response to one group house called Africa, the Philadelphia police department bombed many blocks in the area — the residents were just told to move out. I wonder what will happen if Al-Nusra group tried to do the same in a major US city?
You really wonder what our (US) Government would do if Al Qaeda (Al Nusra) took control of a “heavily urban area” in New York City or Washington DC? Seriously? I’ll give you a hint: it wouldn’t be letting a UN representative enter New York City or Washington DC and escort Al Qaeda (Al Nusra) out to a “safe place.” And the only alternative to that scenario is surely not “annihilating all life.” Think about it.
I agree with you that there would be no safe heaven provided by UN. And I was being rather caustic in annihilating all life. But I still cannot help but wonder why are we so uncappable to put ourselves in the position of those demonised others — and think
how hard would it be to get the groups out while some other power is protecting them. Apropo the White Helmets — why bring food and then close eyes as Al-Nusra takes it from civilians? Why not report on the real goings on in the terrorist occupied Aleppo? Why not talked to parents whose girls have been kidnapped to become “wives” of terrorists and sons forced into military service. Why not talk od routine punishments that end up in head chopping just to scare the population into obedience. Or killing people randomly and yossing them into the slow and meandering river to be washed ashore downstream. The only purpose for fighting so hard for Aleppo is to prevent the population from getting out and speaking about their ordeal. So if the terrorist Aleppo is frizen in place with only the CIA White Helmets going in — Red Crescent was not allowed — then the story can be sanitized as the population staying in will not dare say anything that can have them killed. I am really wondering at the intelligence of people that brought the US policy in Syria into such dead end. That we have to now make our last stand to protect the tormentors — as the illusion was krpt alive for too long that we are protecting brave rebels with the citizens of Aleppo bravely standing by the barricades. Those who concoct these narratives watched too many bad movies.
And exactly where would a “safe area” for Al Qaeda (Al Nusra) be? As I recall it, our (US) Government has been telling us for the past 15 years that there is no place on the planet where Al Qaeda will be safe from immediate destruction by US armed forces. No “safe havens” anywhere. So now, our Government is okay with a UN-sponsored “safe haven” — provided that it is in Syria? Wonderful.
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