Sunday, June 03, 2012

The Warsaw Ghetto, Rwanda, Bosnia, Syria: "Why Have They Forgotten About Us?"

Michael Weiss on the frontier:
I. Sons of Idlib: “Now there is no more Harmoush family,” Mahmoud told me later. “They killed everyone back home. Even babies."
II. Sons of Idlib, Part 2: “One sniper, he killed seven or eight people. So the people from my village went to the origin of the shooting and found an Iranian. They threw him off the building.” 
III. Camp Life: At the entrance to the Boynuyogun camp for Syrian refugees stood a tall man I’d been told was a former solider in the Syrian army. His right hand was encased in a wool glove, and the ring and pinky fingers were noticeably empty. What happened? Mahmoud, my Syrian-American translator and guide on this trip to Turkey’s Hatay province, explained: “When he defected, the regime cut his hand.”
 IV. Camp Life, Part 2:“Why have they forgotten about us?” Rachid asked. “If George Bush was president, Assad would be finished,” another said in what was also a common refrain among the stranded Syrians of Hatay.

Mike Petrou, in sum: “The idea that we don’t want to get involved because we don’t want to heighten the chances of civil war is a ludicrous argument, because civil war is upon us,” says Michael Young of Beirut's Daily Star. “The proxy war is there. Civil, sectarian conflict is already there. At this point, to simply sit back and say we don’t want to make this worse is behaving like an ostrich. It’s going to get worse. It’s not going to get better.”

Next time you feel inclined to whimper "Why do they hate us?", remember this.  


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