Tag Archives: Hama

Syria’s Winds of Radical Change

Commentary by @LeShaque  – 8 June 2011

The winds of change have been blowing throughout the Middle East in what has become known as the Arab Spring. In a region that has known little change over the past few decades, people are taking to the streets demanding improvement of their living standards. Not surprisingly, as their lives are more or less the same as they were in the 1950s. These hopes for change came into direct conflict with the regimes’ desire to maintain the status quo that has kept them in power all this time. Continue reading

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From Hama to Deraa: How a Barbaric Episode in History Repeats Itself

Commentary by Tamer Mallat & Antoine Alhéritière – 9 May 2011

This week, reports portraying the consequences of Bashar al-Assad’s crackdown on the March 15 movement have begun to reveal the extent of the bloodbath being produced in Syria. The iconic border-town of Deraa, which has become the symbol of Syria’s fledgling opposition movement, has been under siege by the Syrian army for more than ten days now. The death count for the past few days, just released by The Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies (DCHRS), numbers in the hundreds. From children to army officers and conscripts shot in the back – most likely because they refused to fire on unarmed protestors – no segment of the Syrian population appears to be spared from the sordid picture that is being drawn. Dubbed a “massacre”, the repression in Deraa evokes memories of an all-too similar event that occurred in 1982 when Hama suffered one of the most brutal crackdowns in Arab history, with the number of deaths estimated at being well over 20,000. Continue reading

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