Could the Assad regime be crumbling in Syria?

Jeff Stacklin
The Envoy
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This image made from amateur video released by Ugarit News, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows a Syrian rebel firing his weapon in Damascus, Syria, Friday, June 21, 2013. The commander of Syria's rebels confirms they have received new weapons, giving his forces more power in battles against government troops and Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon. Gen. Salim Idris refused to say in an interview with Al-Jazeera TV Friday where the weapons came from. (AP Photo/Ugarit News via AP video)

Syria's regime is showing signs that it is weakening, according to reports from newspapers in the United Kingdom and Israel.

Syrian President Bashar Assad has sought asylum for himself, his family, and associates in Latin America if his regime falls and he is forced to flee Damascus, reported Haaretz, an Israeli daily paper.

The report indicates that nation's deputy foreign minister met with leaders in Cuba, Ecuador, and Venezuela, and brought personal letters from Assad to local leaders.

Meanwhile, The Guardian reported Tuesday that former Syrian foreign ministry spokesman, Jihad Makdissi, is traveling to the United States after apparently defecting. Makdissi, the newspaper notes, is the most senior Christian official who hasn't abandoned Assad's regime. He arrived Monday in London, where he previously served in the Syrian embassy.