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.
Co-director of prize-winning film Still Recording tells Al-Jumhuriya about filming under chemical attacks in Eastern Ghouta, and the untold stories of life in revolutionary Syria.
Following the collapse of Jaysh al-Islam’s rule in Douma, Yassin al-Haj Saleh traveled to Turkey to seek answers from the city’s displaced residents about his wife, Samira, and three other activists abducted with her there in 2013.
Animals have not fared well at militants’ hands in Syria over the past seven years, though civilians have been kinder. Dr. Uğur Ümit Üngör traces the shifting role and symbolism of animals in Syria’s recent history.
While generally well-intentioned, the concept of solidarity involves an unequal power relationship between those offering and receiving it. A preferable state of affairs would be partnership, placing Western activists and their counterparts elsewhere on equal footing.
Will there still be lemons on the tree of our house in Douma next year? wonders this displaced resident. If so, who will eat them?
For over 100,000 civilians expelled from Eastern Ghouta, their new homes in official shelters bear striking resemblance to the regime’s fearsome detention centers.
In his ninth letter to his missing wife Samira al-Khalil, abducted in Douma in 2013, Yassin al-Haj Saleh writes that “a crack in the wall of your dark prison” may now have opened.
With Eastern Ghouta’s remaining residents in peril like never before, friends and relatives of four renowned civil society activists abducted there in 2013 appeal for their long-overdue release.
In Iraq in the 1990s, the UN came up with an “oil for food” program. In Eastern Ghouta today, the international community is sponsoring a new formula: water in exchange for dignity, writes Osama Nassar from the besieged enclave.
From besieged Douma, the last remaining pocket of opposition-held Eastern Ghouta, Osama Nassar reflects on the fate awaiting him and his fellow residents as Russia and the Assad regime impose their “settlement” on the region’s starved and battered population.
Yassin al-Haj Saleh's eighth letter to his missing wife Samira al-Khalil, abducted in Douma in 2013.