This morning, ABC aired a Barbara Walters interview with Syrian “dictator by accident” Bashar el Assad, whom she found to be “not like Qadhafi.” (Crazy does come in different flavors, Barbara.) After an airy tour around Damascus, where Walters found that “life goes on,” she took off her tour guide outfit to grill Assad gently about his reign of terror.
Assad’s was a pathetic performance, Arab dictator 101. Apparently, the military killings are not his doing: “They are not my forces, they are military forces belonging to the government. There was no command to kill or be brutal.” The United Nations accusations about heinous crimes against the Syrian people prompted this question: “Who said that the United Nations is a credible institution?” The specifics elicited the usual demand to “send out the documents and the concrete evidences that you have.”
Asked about the murder of Syrian singer Ibrahim Kashoush, Assad claimed never to have heard of him. Here are the images of Kashoush’s death, if you can stomach them.
Helpfully, Assad affirmed that, “When I feel that the public support declined, I won’t be here,” going on to explain that “No government in the world kill its people [sic] unless it’s led by crazy person.” True.
After Assad closed with an embarrassing giggle after being asked whether he feels guilty, I turned to Charlie Rose’s 2010 interview with Assad for a reminder of how seriously the media elite and Obama administration took this SOB. Here’s Rose’s opener: “ I am not the only American who has been here recently. Senator John Kerry, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, was here on Saturday and recently as well. Is something happening in the relationship between Syria and the United States?”
Enjoy the whole thing here. Ugh.