By sanctioning Assad, they won't pressure him personally. By doing this they are signaling to the Syrian people that even the President is vulnerable - and thus they will be going out for more demonstrations, and if the demonstrations continue and Assad feels that he and his regime is being threatend he will start another front to ease up the pressure - in other words, he will pour gasoline on Lebanon and light a fire, making Hezbollah do something to provocate Israel and in a matter of hours there will be a full fledged conflict and thousands will die. In the end of the day though - Assad will stay.
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Police arrest 18-year-old Palestinian suspected in Old City stabbing (Haaretz)
from the article: U.S. sanctions Syria's Assad for human rights abuses
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