We Must Highlight The Syrian Tragedy More In 2014
06 January 2014
By Diana Moukalled
Diana Moukalled is a prominent and well-respected
TV journalist in the Arab world thanks to her
phenomenal show Bil Ayn Al-Mojarada (By The Naked
Eye), a series of documentaries on controversial areas
and topics which airs on Lebanon's leading local and
satelite channel, Future Television. Diana also is a
veteran war correspondent, having covered both the
wars in Iraq and in Afghanistan, as well as the
Isreali "Grapes of Wrath" massacre in southern
Lebanon. Ms. Moukalled has gained world wide
recognition and was named one of the most influential
women in a special feature that ran in Time Magazine
In my last op-ed of the year, allow me to take the
opportunity to resist colluding with the rest of the
world regarding what is happening in Syria. There is a
vital need to undertake creative and exceptional
efforts to ensure that the situation in Syria returns
to the headlines. The situation in the country is not
only intimidating to the Syrian people themselves but
also the rest of the world as atrocities continue to
take place on the ground.
The media, myself included, must resist the Syrians'
forced complacency towards the presupposition that
their deaths no longer stirs international uproar.
The regime's missiles, barrel bombs, and chemical
weapons, not to mention their massacres' and torture,
are no longer news. Not even Syrian children dying of
hunger or cold is news. The images of this now only
reaches those who desire to frustrate themselves by
witnessing scenes that many others appear to have
The Syrians have now realized that the footage they
shot during the first and second years of the
revolution no longer affect public opinion as much as
they did in the past. In the meantime, there's a
universal antipathy towards the deaths in Syria.
This apathy is political, moral and journalistic.
It is as if there's been a global decision that we
have had enough of Syrian news, despite all the death,
destruction and suffering. It is enough to look at the
reaction, or rather lack of reaction, to the images of
the victims of the barrel bombs in Aleppo over the
past two weeks.
It's true that the slaughter carried out by the
Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and other
terrorists still stirs attention. Those who are
shocked by ISIS's atrocities, but who remain apathetic
to the regime's horrifying acts, appear to hold the
repugnant idea that the Assad regime, despite its
bloodthirstiness, remains the best option for regional
The Syrian regime has exerted significant efforts to
promote its version of the events in Syria. Or rather,
shall we say that it has exerted efforts to promote
its lies? Damascus has only worked to spread the word
about ISIS and other similar groups in order to draw
attention away from the Syrians being killed by their
"secular" barrel bombs.
Despite all this, the Syrian people have not given up.
Over the past year, many cameras have recorded Syrian
deaths. 2013 was the toughest year as the Syrian
regime's brutality has only increased. Cameras became
the most important factor during moments of violence
and murder. Sometimes, murder was even carried out for
the sole purpose of videotaping it and broadcasting it
to the world at large.
So who is responsible for the general disregard of the
painful deaths in Syria?
Is it simple human nature which can become accustomed
to anything, even heinous murder? Or is this due to a
political and journalistic inability to keep the
Syrian people's cause alive?
We must make sure that the Syrian tragedy is not
forgotten in 2014.