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My response to this is that it is too bad that this is happening, both because of the human toll that this sort of oppression will have and because it seems to mean that it is less likely that Syria will go the way of the North African countries.
There had been hopes that Assad and his government would be the next to fall after Libya. However, with this crushing of opposition, it seems less likely that this will happen. That is a shame because Assad's government, which is a very repressive government with little regard for its people, really deserves to fall.
With any luck, the protests will bring down the Assad government, although there is always the danger that it may be replaced by something worse. As of this writing, Assad's grip on power seems to be weakening.
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