“The future of Syria must be determined by its people, but President Bashar al-Assad is standing in their way.” These words spoken by United States President Barack Obama reflect not only the sentiment of many nations around the world about the leadership of Syria’s president, but also the essence of Chapter eight: the difference between democracy and nondemocracy. Democracy is characterized by the connection between the government and its people in terms of input like the ideas and interests of the people, and output such as laws and policy. This differs from nondemocracy. Many elements contribute to a country being labeled nondemocratic. Ellen Grigsby asserts that nondemocratic governments are antipaticipatory, suppressive of some groups
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The supremacy of this party in regulating the three branches of government is legitimized by the Syrian constitution. This exemplifies antiparticipation in that the election of leaders is insignificant if they do not have the power to act independently of a single party. A final example of antiparticipation in the Syrian government is the stipulation in Syria’s constitution that the president must be Muslim and that interpretations of Islam must be the driving force in law making. This limits the scope of people who can lead the country and thusly represents antiparticipation.
The Syrian government has historically suppressed many groups within its society. These people have mostly been those in opposition to the government’s leader or policies. An example of this is the arrest and detention of Syrian citizens who are suspected to be members of a banned organization known as the Muslim Brotherhood. Another example is the treatment of the ethnic minority within the country, the Kurds. Kurdish people are not allowed to speak their native language and are not allowed citizenship within Syria. There have been several recent attempts to suppress the voices of the proponents and supporters of the 2011 Syrian uprising. These attempts include killing and torturing protestors and attacks by the Syrian Army. The Syrian government’s suppression of political opposition and the Kurdish portray its nondemocratic makeup.
From 1963-2011 Syria was been