Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Opinion: Syria is dying | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Civilians receive free food for their first iftar, or breaking fast, during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan in Raqqa province, eastern Syria July 10, 2013. (REUTERS/Nour Fourat.)

The awful humanitarian crisis gripping all Syrian villages and cities has been overshadowed by the political and military aspects of the Syrian revolution that, for more than two years, has killed over 100,000 people. All attention has been given to conferences, coalitions, rebels, mercenary battalions, funding, international polarization, and mad sectarian obsession.

In Homs, an important city, for example, some Muslim scholars have issued a fatwa to permit eating cat meat in emergencies, in a clear sign to the seriously deteriorating humanitarian situation in the city and all over Syria.

There are tens of thousands of people injured amid unbelievable shortages of medical supplies. What is more dangerous, however, is the fact that Assad regime deliberately targets all hospitals and clinics, murdering medical doctors and nursing staff.

Health conditions cannot be worse. Some health aid workers who have been to Syria have talked about experiences and scenes beyond belief. They said they performed operations without sterilization, anesthesia or lighting, using primitive medical techniques despite the terrible injuries, and deformities, in a definite sign to the atrocities committed by the Syrian regime.

Furthermore, the food situation is just as bad. Despite being an agricultural country, Syria suffers from severe shortages in vegetables, fruits and wheat. In fact, most crops cannot be gathered or distributed, leading the country towards a catastrophe which saw the most basic of commodities hitting record prices. This has led the Syrian currency to collapse against the US dollar in a manner that made it difficult for people to afford the rare commodities which are smuggled to the points of sale.

Education in Syria poses an enormous challenge. Due to absence of schools, books and teachers, more than two millions and a half million children in Syria are denied the right to education. This will have serious repercussions which will be more tangible with the passage of time.

This is not to mention the ever-deteriorating situation of refugees which, according to several political organizations, has the potential for being the worst in history. Charity aid is in a state of disorder because the criminal regime forcibly blocks all commodities and equipment from Syrians and instead gives them to its supporters and shabeeha.

There is an urgent need for a state of emergency to be declared in the rebel-held areas. The deafening silence of international aid organizations, such as the United Nations, Red Cross, Red Crescent and Doctors Without Borders is something bizarre and suspicious. It seems that the silence of the international community is something deliberate to allow the criminal regime achieve as many gains as possible on the ground. Moreover, this seems to be in line with efforts made by the pro-Israel lobby in the US congress, which is still convinced that the survival of Assad ensures the security and protection of Israel. In fact, it managed to persuade the congress to overrule Obama’s decision to arm the rebels.

The humanitarian situation in Syria remains to be a different story. Unfortunately, those who never cease to praise humanitarian aid seem to have no pang of conscience. To put it simply, Syria is dying!