The U.N.’s Syria Ceasefire at Work

The six-point plan for peace, love and Assad hits a few glitches.

Syrian passions are high on the streets near Homs, and bomb rates are down. (Photo: Shaam News Network/Reuters)

Apr 13, 2012
Allan MacDonell is TakePart’s News + Opinion editor, with a focus on social justice.

A comprehensive, six-point Syrian peace plan took effect Tuesday. Reported results have been mixed. The one constant is messaging that full-fledged violence is only one trigger incident away.

Insurgent sources claim that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s military has stalled on withdrawing heavy weapons from population centers and continues to kill people, albeit at a slower rate than as of Monday. Syrian state news, on the other hand, claims that rebels have bombed a military bus and slain an army officer. Assad spokesmen are lobbing the phrase “aggression from terrorists,” three words that have accompanied heavy artillery bombardments on residential areas during the past year.

And Twitter, in keeping with the 12 months leading up to the ceasefire, is a-chatter with eyewitness claims of shelling, snipers and vehicular mayhem from Assad’s forces.

Is this week’s semi-peace pause a baby step to civil coexistence in Syria? Is the ceasefire an opportunity for Assad to stall and regroup? What, if anything, should the U.S. be doing to influence this highly explosive situation? Leave it in comments.

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