The American Interest
Analysis by Walter Russell Mead & Staff
Assad Embraces Human Life, Environmentalism?

Since the beginning of Syria’s civil war last year, observers from around the world have been wringing their hands about the violence and loss of life in the country, where over 30,000 have already died as a result of the conflict. Now it looks like Assad may have been paying attention, as he has just announced an important new measure to address the loss of human lives: Banning¬†genetically¬†modified foods (GMOs). AFP¬†reports (h/t Marginal Revolution):

Assad, whose forces are locked in a bloody confrontation with armed rebels opposed to his rule, “has approved a law on the health security of genetically modified organisms… to regulate their use and production,” SANA reported.

The law is meant “to preserve the health of human beings, animals, vegetables and the environment,” the agency added.

Assad’s embrace of health-conscious environmentalism is certainly a surprise, but it is also misguided; GMOs are currently one of the best things going for the environment, and may be healthier to eat as well.

This would concern us more, yet for some reason, we feel that Assad’s newfound appreciation for human life may be less than meets the eye. Call it a hunch.

Published on October 21, 2012 12:00 pm