Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Syria: From Geneva 2 Montreux

As some Swiss watch maker's convention took precedence today, forcing Geneva II to open in Montreux, it sort of put into perspective the chances of anything meaningful coming out of this long awaited event.

Yet, after Ban ki-moon laid out the terms and guidelines for good conduct in anticipation of a day that would surely see much heated and direct discourse, it was hard not feel a measure of optimism as Sergei Lavrov made his opening address.

His conciliatory tone and talk of allowing the Syrian people to decide Syria's future, although expected, seemed both honest and heartfelt, could this really be a turning point?

But then up stepped John Kerry, whose preconditions and blame-ridden finger pointing laid no doubt as to how little chance there is for peace or reconciliation at this time.

It reminded me of the early days of the 'Arab Spring', when the fatuous quipped that it would all end in tears, because 'the Arabs just don't do Democracy'. Prophetic as that may appear, it seems now that the middle East must descend even further into chaos and bloodshed, because the West no longer does Diplomacy.