Third-Wayers and Syrian oppositionists often cite Syria’s participation in the US-led coalition against Saddam during the Gulf War I /”Operation Desert Storm” as evidence of the Assad’s regime’s complicity with imperialism. What they are too strategically-short sighted to realize, is that in the context of a uni-polar world order, Hafez al-Assad’s rationale for ganging up against a regional rival (i.e. Saddam, who was hardly a beacon of resistance to imperialism at the time) was to prevent a similar fate from befalling Syria. The excerpt below is from Anoushiravan Ehteshami and Raymond A. Hinnebusch’s book, “Syria And Iran: Middle Powers In A Penetrated Regional System”, Routledge, 1997, pp. 80 and 83:
“Asad certainly feared that the Iraq invasion could unleash a wider war which Israel could exploit to attack Syria, and joining the coalition was a kind of insurance against that….The destruction of Iraq showed what Asad had spared Syria. Syrians grudgingly gave him credit for shrewdly preempting plots to make Syria the next victim of the “New World Order”.
I guess only relinquishing Palestine and the resistance can spare a country from regime change, civil war and dismemberment….