Syrians Ignore Assad's 'Peace Plan' Speech
And it could turn off UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Jan 7, 2013 1:21 PM CST
Syrian President Bashar Assad gestures as he speaks, at the Opera House in central Damascus, Syria, Jan. 6, 2013.   (AP Photo/SANA)

(Newser) – Syria's civil war raged on today, without the slightest pause of acknowledgement for yesterday's rare Bashar al-Assad speech. It was billed as the unveiling of a "peace plan," but Assad offered essentially no concessions and spent much of the speech justifying his bloody crackdown. And there may be repercussions: In it, he dismissed the work of UN envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, saying, "Everyone who comes to Syria knows that Syria accepts advice, but not orders," and the New York Times predicts such remarks might cause Brahimi to wash his hands of the conflict. That would present the US and other "Friends of Syria" with a quandary: Get more involved, or potentially watch the conflict continue indefinitely.

And though celebratory gunfire rang out afterward, even some loyalists were unimpressed. "It sounded more like gloating than making promises," one Assad supporter tells Reuters. "Everything he suggests now, it is too late. The rebels aren't going to stop." Indeed, hours after the speech, fresh clashes broke out along the road to Damascus' international airport, and regime artillery reportedly hit a district just three miles from where Assad spoke. One Assad critic in a hard-hit district agreed that the speech meant little. "Here, no one cares about this speech. They care about food and electricity."

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Jan 8, 2013 2:24 PM CST
azzend is a nut! 1 he has all the money he and his fimily could ever spend. 2 he has about a mill or so people who want to kill him on sight. 3 he still has a place to go. 4 he is just to dumb to get out of town! mr darwin please do your thing soon!!!!!!
Jan 8, 2013 5:25 AM CST
"Syrians Ignore Assad's 'Peace Plan' Speech" And by "Syrians" you mean the criminals, yes? "but Assad offered essentially no concessions and spent much of the speech justifying his bloody crackdown." What about the "bloody" aggression of the Western-backed criminal mean, the "rebels"?
Jan 7, 2013 11:56 PM CST
Syrian dictator Bashar Assad must be removed from power. Assad is a threat to world peace. We, as Americans must not remain quiet while Assad kills innocent people in Syria. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. The United States, NATO, Turkey, Israel, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Israel, the E.U., an the U.N. must invade Syria by land, sea and air and remove Assad from power. I pray that President Obama liberates Syria. Even Jesus does not like Assad. Assad is pure evil.