Following are excerpts from an interview with defecting Syrian official Colonel ‘Inad Abbas, which aired on Al-Arabiya TV on October 16, 2012:
‘Inad Abbas: From the onset of the revolution, I had no excuse to remain in the government, yet I remained in it for a year – and for this I must pay the price to the citizens.
Interviewer: How do you think you will pay?
‘Inad Abbas: In my opinion, I, along with the other people who were late in defecting, should not work [in the government] in the coming period. The people should punish...
Sheds a tear, then pulls himself together
Civilians who were tortured, whose fingernails were pulled out... Some of the detainees were even impaled on a stake, like the Romans used to do before the Christian era. I, along with the other officers, heard about such things. True, I didn’t witness it myself, but I talked to some detainees from Salamiya, whose names I don’t recall, and they told me that they had been impaled on a stake. There were people over 70 years old who were hung by the feet from the ceiling. Many women were raped, and children were killed.
These horrifying images, which we see on our TV screens, and which shocked the world, did not shock the regime to which I belonged. Despite this, I remained there for a whole year. I should not be forgiven for this year – not by my brothers, nor by my countrymen. The future regime, the future Syria, should be free of the likes of us. It should be led by those young people, who were imprisoned once, twice, three times – yet persisted.