A Chance For Peace

We don’t hear much talk on whether there are any possibility left for a peaceful settlement of the Syria crisis in the United Stats these days. There were some street demonstrations against the U.S going to war with Syria, but their voices had been drawn out by the sound of drumbeat for a surgical strike and the “macho” talk of shooting missile into Syria to punish the Syrian leader who was accused of using chemical weapons against its people on August 21. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon seemed to be the lone voice that ask the Obama Government to give peace a chance and to wait for the result of the UN investigation team. Today, I am happy to hear another voice for peace from Former U.S.President Jimmy Carter who called for ending of hostilities. The Carter Foundation made a proposal to hold a Peace Conference and to work with the United Nations in finding a political solution to the crisis in Syria. Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan gave a press interview today saying that there is no military solution to the crisis in Syria . He spoke on behalf of the “Group of Elders” formed in 2007 by the former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela. Members of the group includes former President of Finland, Martti Ahtisaari, former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, former Brazilian President Henrique Cardoso, former Irish President Mary Robinson, former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo and former President Jimmy Carter. They condemned the use of chemical weapon against the people in Syria as inhumane and criminal act. They said that those responsible must be held accountable both individually and collectively. As a road to peace, they also proposed holding a Peace Conference called Geneva II as one non-violent possibility available to help in resolving the conflict which should include women in the process. Another action proposed by the Nobel laureates Jody Williams (U.S.), Shirin Ebadi (Iran), Tawakkol Karman (Yemen), Mairead Maguire (Ireland), Leymah Gbowee (Liberia) and Rigoberta Menchu Tum (Guatemala) is to ask the U.N. Security Council to refer the case of the chemical weapons attack of civilian population to the ICC. These venues to a peaceful way for conflict resolution should at least be tried out before consideration of taking any military action that will end up killing and harming more people. It surely will expand the dimension of the war but I don’t think will end a regional conflict of this kind.

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