No. They would have been left to starve through Syria’s drought. No need to go on to global warming: the protests were motivated by economic suffering as much as or more than democratic sentiments.
Assad the Tyrant, using snipers to make his statement — and arresting school children to make it clear — turned a modest popular protest into possibly the most sadistic “civil war” on earth and in history. Unrivaled in its abuses of noncombatant Syrians, he managed to destroy his state, for all intents, and have it serve as a platform for Hezbollah, the Russian Army, and sundry attempts (impeded by Israel) at the manufacturing and delivery of advanced missiles for launching in southern Lebanon.
The Soviet Union collapsed in bankruptcy 26 years ago this December 25.
It turns out that Soviet / Post-Soviet Russia has become truly the “Mafia State” — Luke Harding’s term — and not the least reformed as an aggressive and barbarous monstrosity.
Prompt: the claim that had the west stayed out of Syria, Syrians would be happily alive and domiciled.