Friday, June 13, 2014

We will pay for doing nothing in Syria.

I've literally said these words to Mr S. more times than I can count over the past couple of years. His very understandable view was - this is their problem not ours. It's a horrible problem but there just isn't anything we can do to make it better. Which I totally agree with. It's probably why I haven't written about Syria more - because he's right. I can't think of anything we can do to make it better.

However - I've had a twitter feed on Syria for a couple of years now. At least since I wrote this post in early 2012. Just one week ago I said the following to Mr S. "You know I've been following Syria for a few years now. The past few months have been like radio silence there. My twitter feed has ground to a halt. Even I don't know what is going on over there now". Before at least I could say people were just too lazy to care. If they just took a minute they could easily see what was going on if they wanted to. Now that wasn't true anymore.

You see - I've had to wrestle over Syria quite a bit. I was for the Iraq war on humanitarian reasons. I didn't really care why we'd gone in. I only knew what they were doing to their people. The horrible atrocities that were being reported. I was sure if we had twitter before the Iraq war the average person would have supported it more because you could see the horrible things that were happening to people.

But year after year I watched the videos out of Syria. The first couple of years it was a lot of the hospitals posting videos trying to get the world to see the horror. Then it was the people committing the atrocities. Finally this year all of that stopped. In my mind I thought - they know no one is coming to help them. They've given up trying to get our attention. The world doesn't care. After a while I'd seen so many deeply horrible things I couldn't believe when I found a video that shocked me. I thought I'd seen some of the deepest depravity you could get. But the fighters continued to find even new ways to shock me. And I've watched the Daniel Perl video. I would say that getting your head cut off in Syria might not be the worst thing that could happen to you. If I were there - I'd hope that is the way they'd get me before they started getting more "creative". A few weeks ago I saw a cartoon where they joked it was harder to cut off the heads of bald men. That is how common it is over there!

The videos stopped not too many months after Syria started using barrel bombs. Oh yeah. I'm betting most of you have never heard of this - because I'd never heard of it before Syria. I've never heard the news once cover the fact that they were using barrel bombs there. You fill a barrel full of fuel and push it out of a plane. I don't know how this is worse than other bombs. It just seems more terrifying.

I once saw them drag a naked man for blocks by his feet through the streets of a city. On the concrete. As if dirt would have been that much better. He was awake the whole time. These were not easy images to see. But it was however reality. I feel  no matter how uncomfortable reality is - if you shield yourself from these things - that is not true reality. It's just a reality that makes you feel better.

I figured we pay in shame. Like the Holocaust or Kosovo. The Iraq thing surprised me - but all that much.

All I know is Syria is the place extremists went to learn how to become the most depraved humans on earth. Which is already saying a lot because they are extremists! Syria is just basically one terrorist group fighting another to best each other. If those people are spilling into Iraq - these are the most brutal of brutal sorts of people you can imagine. An unchecked Syria has been their playground for years. They've had a lot of time to practice whatever form of fighting they plan to use. Who knows what will happen, but I can only imagine it will be super ugly.

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