Is there a final tendril of hope?
Last week the Americans attacked Syrian troops.
This week Russian planes targeted the UN aid caravan.
The inability of these two major powers to come onto the same page has not only jeopardized the cease-fire and brought grave concerns that it is collapsing but also signposted another cruel and gross bout of fighting. With as high as 250,000 people killed over these five years, this was seen as the final chance of coming to the table and it is slipping away rapidly.
With the UN having no choice but to stop any more convoys on humanitarian grounds because of the intrinsic risk involved from every force in the area the beleaguered millions of civilians stranded in Aleppo will stay stranded. Life will get bleaker.
The attack on the convoy by either Russian or Syrian aircraft was obviously a massive misjudgment caused by intelligence that indicated that the area these vehicles were transiting through was a rebel-held stronghold. What makes it so incredible is that in this time and age of high-tech capability the military powers fighting against extremists were incapable of establishing adequate communications to mark the convoy as a Red Crescent initiative.
If these were rebels who had attacked the aid carrying vehicles and ransacked them one could have demanded higher security. But when politics is a barrier and even the UN is placed at risk by its own members and the protocol of movement of materials is worth nothing then the fear of there being a total discord becomes palpable.
Even as one writes this there are reports of aerial strikes on Aleppo and the guns are beginning to boom again. The US still hopes that the peace can be saved and the mortally wounded dove of peace put on life support.
Ruffled feathers are a thing of the past. It is now more a question of how to save Syria from becoming a page in history.
And the Russians must rise above their hostility to Washington and ask if it is really worth the survival of a nation for one man.
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