The guns of Bashar al-Assad continue to sound in Syrian cities and there is scant sign he has decided to give in to demands for democratic reforms. Tanks surrounded several cities in which there are reports that dozens of soldiers left the ranks and decided enough was enough. In Homs, dozens of members of the military simply walked off their posts and melded into the population only to be confronted by their comrades blasting away at the local population.
We suspect it is simply too late for Assad to actually implement reforms. The vast majority of Syrians hate him and if he grants democratic elections they will vote into power those ready to place him on trial as a war criminal. He can not go back, he can not go forward so he is a man paralyzed with inaction and lacking any idea of how to retain power without killing thousands.
His close ally Turkey has turned on him. Even Iran is giving him advice to listen to the people, but he is unable to do anything other than kill. Of course, this means, he will suffer the fate of Saddam Hussein.