SYRIA - Part 4 - The Decision Makers.The decision makers in Syria entered the Internet time In the early days of the public Internet, Internet time referred to the breakneck speed with which companies scrambled to gain traffic and market share on the Web. A new business could come and go within a matter of weeks. zone in March 2000 when, three months before his death, President Hafez Al Assad got his son Bashar to play the key role in forming a new government. After Hafez died in June 2000, the transition to Bashar was smooth. The transition was possible thanks to a system of informal checks and balances established by the old man, rather than to a reformed regime which Bashar had promised months earlier.
There are still two layers of authority in Syria, one visible and formal - which has a website glorifying the country's ruler - and a far more powerful one which is invisible. From the prime minister down, many among the visible decision makers are technocrats.
In reality, however, the technocrats are takers of decisions which originate from the invisible layer. The technocrats have freedom in the way decisions should be executed but, in return, they are responsible for their actions. They will be severely punished if their actions endanger en·dan·ger
tr.v. en·dan·gered, en·dan·ger·ing, en·dan·gers
1. To expose to harm or danger; imperil.
2. To threaten with extinction. the security of the regime.
The real decision makers for the petroleum sector, excluding those of the formal layer, belong to the invisible group. Both layers are controlled nominally by President Bashar Al Assad but invisibly by a small elite of figures who took over hours after Hafez Al Assad died on June 10, 2000 (see the political leadership in Gas Market Trends).
Some of the technocrats in the visible layer are close to President Assad. After passing certain tests over the years, they may become part of the invisible layer. But it is very difficult for an outsider to identify and take advantage of them. An outsider looking in would find Syria to be one of the most inscrutable in·scru·ta·ble
Difficult to fathom or understand; impenetrable. See Synonyms at mysterious.
[Middle English, from Old French, from Late Latin countries in the world.
While there are threads of similarity among the Syrians as a whole, this country's negotiators are largely the product of their regional and tribal or family background. This is despite indoctrinations by the ruling Arab Baath Socialist Party Socialist party, in U.S. history, political party formed to promote public control of the means of production and distribution. In 1898 the Social Democratic party was formed by a group led by Eugene V. Debs and Victor Berger. since the early 1960s.
A Syrian negotiator from Damascus would be quite different from one from Aleppo, or one from the mountainous moun·tain·ous
1. Having many mountains.
2. Resembling a mountain in size; huge: mountainous waves.
1. Alawite region, one from the Druze area, or one from the Al Jazeera This article is about the TV network and channel. For other uses, see Jazira.
Al Jazeera (Arabic: الجزيرة, al-ğazīrä region, etc. But even among Damascenes, one negotiator would be quite different from one belonging to another clan clan, social group based on actual or alleged unilineal descent from a common ancestor. Such groups have been known in all parts of the world and include some that claim the parentage or special protection of an animal, plant, or other object (see totem). . The same is true of the Alawites and other tribal or ethnic groups.