In his third inauguration speech, Syrian dictator Bashar Assad blasted the West and the Sunni Gulf States and promised to wrest all of Syria back from the various rebel factions that have revolted against him. Last month, Assad was "re-elected" for a third seven-year term in an contest that was almost universally considered a sham.
Over 170,000 people have died since the Syrian civil war started over three years ago. As Reuters noted, the United Nations estimates that nearly 11 million Syrians are in need of dire aid.
Assad family values RT @LizSly Assad is saying the Syrian revolt is the fault of parents who didn't raise their children right.— Mike Doran (@Doranimated) July 16, 2014
According to reports, Assad seemed confident and unfazed as he spoke about his plans to defeat the Islamist insurgents that have seized swaths of Syria from government.
Soon we will see the Arab, regional and Western states that supported terrorism pay a high price."
As mea culpas go, well there wasn't much in the offing:
I repeat my call today to those who were misled to put down their guns, because we will not stop fighting terrorism and striking it wherever it is until we restore security to every spot of Syria."
Assad was gracious too, thanking his allies for keeping him afloat.
Remember when Assad & Nasrallah denied that Hizbollah was present in Syria? Now Assad acknowledges & thanks them in his speeches.— The 47th (@THE_47th) July 16, 2014
For those keeping score, his father Hafez Assad took power in 1971 before power was passed to his son following the elder Assad's death in 2000. By the end of Bashar Assad's third term, Syria will have been under Assad rule for 50 years.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.