Fine Lines and Fine Liars

09 Dec 2011

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad speaking to Barbara Walters:

“Every ‘brute reaction’ was by an individual, not by an institution, that’s what you have to know. There is a difference between having a policy to crackdown and between having some mistakes committed by some officials. There is a big difference.”

The problem with such excuses is that the state must be held accountable for the actions of its police and military forces – even rogue actors – otherwise it becomes easy for corrupt leaders and democratic dictators to hide their misdeeds behind a body of lies.

This, I suspect, is a quandary that President al-Assad understands better than he would have others believe.