The March 15 editorial “Syria’s bloody anniversary” correctly identified the heightened national security threat that has developed as the Syrian crisis, which began as a peaceful pro-democracy movement, spirals further into violent conflict.
Two years into this conflict, a number of countries aside from Russia continue to provide the Assad regime with the weapons, fuel, finance and political cover it needs for President Bashar al-Assad to continue his bloody assaults. While influence on Russia has proved ineffective, the United States and foreign governments still can take immediate action to prevent these resources from reaching the regime by using their diplomatic influence on the commercial actors along the supply chain, entities that rely heavily on access to Western markets to do business.
If policymakers are seriously working toward a swift solution, action to cut off Mr. Assad’s lifelines is required now. The tools to do so are in place. The Syrian people just need us to act.
Sadia Hameed, Washington
The writer is director of the crimes against humanity program at Human Rights First.