Hassan Hassan writes: Aleppo is a microcosm of the Syrian conflict. It is also a microcosm of the failures of American policy in this war-torn country.
The country’s second largest city has come to define everything that is wrong with the Syrian war: Indiscriminate violence, a siege, starvation, rising extremism, and crippling regional and international rivalries. In the midst of this mess, Washington is a bystander — even a contributor — to the worsening situation.
On Thursday, Aleppo’s last remaining doctors wrote an open letter to President Barack Obama highlighting a similar message: “We have seen no effort on behalf of the United States to lift the siege or even use its influence to push the parties to protect civilians,” the doctors, 15 in total, wrote.
The humanitarian crisis in Aleppo continues to make headlines as regime and Russian airstrikes often target the city’s infrastructure and provision of basic services. Each time, the lives of an estimated 300,000 civilians get worse in what CNN correspondent Clarissa Ward described as an “apocalyptic wasteland.”
But instead of responding to the worst disaster of our times, US policy is vindicating one of the most critical mantras of extremists: That the international community is not a friend to the Syrian people. [Continue reading…]