This week marks two years since thousands of civilians and rebel fighters were displaced from Syria’s Eastern Ghouta. A writer based there at the time profiles one fighter, and how he chose between leaving his hometown and staying under Assad’s ruthless rule.
Beaten, humiliated, then sent as cannon fodder to the ISIS frontlines: A former defector recounts his experience of “reconciliation” with the Assad regime, which appears more interested in punishing its defeated opponents than making peace with them.
Russia told south Syria’s rebel commanders it would protect them if they agreed to “reconcile” with the regime last summer. Dozens have since been killed or arrested.