Just when you thought that mainstream media coverage of the Syrian civil war had reached its lowest ebb, things took a drastic turn for the worse.
This was seen in the media’s salivating over a meeting between a 7 year old girl from Aleppo famous for her tweeting about the Syrian conflict, and the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Obviously, no person could criticize the 7 year old girl, who after growing up in war torn Syria appears to be an honest yet naive messenger.
But the fact that media coverage was intent on showing off the Turkish President loathsomely hugging the 7 year old girl, is of legitimate concern.
Because this presentation paints Edrogan as being some sort of Middle Eastern hero, valiantly battling against the evils of the ‘Assad regime’.
Such a narrative could not be further from the truth.
Bashar al- Assad, regardless of whether he is a particularly pleasant person or leader, is fighting to keep his country united and disparate to the unmitigated disasters of Iraq, Egypt and Libya.
Assad is not my favourite world leader, but if anything, this girl should be meeting and rewarding the efforts of the Syrian President. For under his leadership, Syria has remained a secular nation which maintains rights for women. And should Assad’s mission fail, Syria seems destined to plunge into the 7th century rule of Islamic State, under which no such rights can be spared. Clearly, there is no moral equivalency between the actions of Assad and the enemy that could replace him, Islamic State. None whatsoever.
On the other hand, Erdogan has fought on the side that led to the initial instability in Syria, and the ensuing civil war that has killed hundreds of thousands.
Erdogan has also waged war against the Kurds whom have efficiently combated the Islamic State.
Likewise, Turkey’s Erdogan has been accused of freely allowing the flow of IS fighters through its territory, exchanged in oil sales with the terror group, and has domestically pursued a path along increasingly Islamist lines.
And this is who the mainstream media deems a great saviour for the Middle East?
Luckily for the world, Russia, Iran and Syria appear to be gaining momentum in this war.
For if this biased media had it their way and their desired policies were taken, the failures of the past 15 years in the Middle East, would be replicated for another 50 in pro- democracy and nation- building crusades, which would ultimately amount to nothing.