Putin calls for cooperation with Assad

Russian President Vladimir Putin appealed once again to the international community on Wednesday to forge an alliance with the Assad regime to fight the IS in Syria. Some commentators urge the West to cooperate with the Syrian president, arguing that only he can stabilise the country. Others warn against an immoral alliance.

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Kurier (AT) /

The world must work together on Syria solution

Russia, the US and the rest of the world must get their act together and tackle the causes of war, exodus and terror in Syria, demands the liberal daily Kurier: "Now we are paying the price for the West not having a dialogue with Vladimir Putin. We are paying the price for the alleged willingness of the Russians to have Assad step aside three years ago. And for the one-dimensional accusations that the US caused the chaos in the Middle East long ago (cue: Iraq). Or the less one-dimensional realisation that the West's naïve euphoria about the 'Arab Spring' in the Arab world has served no purpose. … We would like to see the world leaders sit down at a table after five years and find a solution to end the madness in Syria. As quickly as possible."

Le Temps (CH) /

West can hardly refuse Russia's proposal

Moscow's proposal for an international alliance against the IS terrorist organisation that would include the Assad regime is dangerously tempting, the liberal daily Le Temps comments: "The West has no other plan up its sleeve. It could be tempted by this project which would also, perhaps, allow it to put an end to the almost-Cold-War in Europe. After all, was it not thanks to this same Russia that a solution was finally found on the question of chemical weapons in Syria, leading Bashar al-Assad to back down? The problem is that the Syrian army is responsible for roughly 80 percent of the 250,000 deaths so far in the war in Syria. Sooner or later it will be necessary to come to terms with this army: there are no other options. But in fighting against the jihad must we also absolve its murderous general staff, which has committed crimes against humanity? The combined threat of all the Islamic States in the world does not make this prospect any more moral."

24 Chasa (BG) /

Assad clearly the lesser evil

Europe must back Assad's war against the IS militarily if it wants to stop the flood of Syrian refugees, the daily 24 Chasa contends: "Regardless of whether he's good or evil, Assad is the only one who can establish a centrally administrated secular state. At the moment half the population lives in areas controlled by him, because they've chosen to side with the lesser evil. Assad is also the only one who can live in peace with the roughly two million Kurds. ... What would happen if his army suddenly gave up? In no time at all the cutthroats from the IS and al-Nusra would come and kill all the Christians and Shiites, after which they'd take their revenge on the Sunnis who cooperated with Satan. ... If Europe wants to prevent the refugee tsunami that would ensue, it will have to make the US, Turkey and Saudi Arabia reconsider their policies in the region."

Berlingske (DK) /

IS and Assad regime must go

Both the IS and the Assad regime must be defeated in order to tackle the evil that is causing the Syrians to flee at its root, the centre-left daily Berlingske urges: "The EU isn't the only structure that has had enough of this great wave of migration the likes of which we haven't seen since World War II. But unlike back then, we could now slide into a permanent crisis if the international community refuses to cooperate. In eight days' time the leaders of the world will meet at the UN General Assembly. There is much speculation about what will happen. We hope the US and Russia will join forces with the Arab countries and Turkey, first of all to establish a secure zone in Syria, but also to defeat both the IS and the Syrian regime in Damascus. Ground troops will be needed for that. But it's hard to imagine any other solution at present."