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.
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 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.
In response to Vicken Cheterian, Yassin al-Haj Saleh argues the link between the Armenian genocide and today’s mass murder of Syrians is tenuous at best—and that both the killing in Syria and genocide in general are better understood in terms of state power than as ethnic or religious conflicts.