The United States State Department says that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has been responsible for killing 2,000 Syrians since last March for opposing his rule.
Last week, at least 45 Syrians were killed in the city of Hama, as shelling by tanks and their machine guns could be heard for several days. Water and electricity have been shut off, and security forces have confiscated food in some cities.
Several nations -- including the United States, France, and Germany -- have condemned the barbaric tactics being used by the Syrian government against its tens of thousands of opponents.
To add fuel to the fire, these killings have prevailed in the month of August -- the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. Assad considers himself to be a Muslim -- 87 percent of Syria's population of 22 million people are Muslims -- but one would never know it from the barbaric atrocities he has been responsible for during Ramadan.
The fact is that Assad has developed an obsession with political power as the dictator of Syria, and he will do anything necessary -- including mowing down Syrian opponents with tanks -- in a die-hard effort to retain his totalitarian rule.
The United States extended its sanctions against Syria last week, while Italy ended its diplomatic relations with Syria.
We can expect more international action to be taken against Assad in the ensuing days. A persistent bombing of Syrian key government targets by NATO -- as was the case with Libya -- is a realistic option.
In any event, the Syrian crisis will not end until Assad is replaced as president of Syria -- and the sooner he is replaced, the better for humanity.