I consider this agreement among the members of the UN Security Council to be positive, even brilliant, and to offer a golden opportunity for political dialogue to replace blood-shedding as the center of gravity for forging an acceptable future for Syria.
Those who choose to reject this opportunity for a peaceful resolution of the war in Syria will now be singled out and identified in the eyes of the world as the people of Fasad (i.e., the evil people of corruption and destruction).
The time has come for the Syrian Sunni ‘Ulama to reach out to the Syrian Shia ‘Ulama, as well as to the leaders of the Syrian Christian and other Syrian communities and groups, for political dialogue to reach an agreement among themselves on the basis of which they can enter into dialogue with the Syrian government.
It is the Syrian people, and not the dangerously misguided Turkish President, who should determine Syria’s future.
On what must they negotiate and decide?
1. They need to forge a united Syrian front with which to confront those who persist with fighting and with bloodshed in Syria.
2. They must adopt a firm common Syrian position of continued resistance to Israeli oppression.
3. They need to forge a political agreement for a plural model of a State in Syria that will accommodate the vital interests of both Sunni and Shia Islam, both Orthodox and Western Christianity, as well as that of other communities and groups in Syria. Syrian Sunni and Shia Islamic scholars and leaders, both in and out of Syria at this time, should take the initiative to reach out to Syrian Orthodox Christians to build a common bond between themselves, preparatory to engaging others in political dialogue.
4. They must accept that had it not been for Russia, Syria would have already become another Libya. Hence whatever be the future for Syria, it must recognize Russia’s role in saving Syria from becoming another Libya. There can be no agreement for peace between those who want Syria to become another Libya, and those who resist such a future for Syria.