Follow Us

Follow on Twitter    Follow on Facebook    YouTube Channel    Vimeo Channel    Tumblr    SoundCloud Channel    iPhone App    iPhone App

Syria Media Roundup (November 28)

[Image of a Syrian child standing in Aleppo with a simple red balloon. Image by Hasan Almossa via flickr] [Image of a Syrian child standing in Aleppo with a simple red balloon. Image by Hasan Almossa via flickr]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Syria and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Syria Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to by Monday night of every week.]


Inside Syria

Pixels of War: One Student’s Path to Photography in Eastern Aleppo In the second installment of “Pixels of War,” Yehya Alrejjo recounts how the Syrian uprising and war transformed him from a student of chemistry to a photographer with the opposition in the besieged and fiercely contested city of Aleppo.

A message from the people of Aleppo to the world In a rare video message in English, this group of Syrian doctors and civil servants in Aleppo issues a desperate plea for humanitarian aid.

Damascus Diary: A Syrian City Filled With Life, and Hints of Brutal Death Anne Barnard writes about her stay in Damascus early this month and the new ways that war has wounded and warped the city.

One of the few doctors left in Aleppo speaks to CNN Fewer than three dozen doctors remain in rebel-held eastern Aleppo, risking their lives in a city under siege. Dr. Hamza al-Khatib shares his thoughts with CNN.

Besieged by silence: a letter to the world “This is a letter from those who are besieged—over one million civilians in Syria—who are being starved to death right now.” 

Foreign fighters pour into Syria to bolster Assad regime This article claims that Shia fighters from Lebanon, Iraq, Iran and beyond join to fight alongside Syrian regime forces.

Role Reversal: Children Caring for Parents "In 2011 and 2012 the conflict in Syria has forced many university students to leave their studies in order to join the workforce. Due to the effects of the conflict, many find themselves assuming the role of the breadwinner. Since then, it is not uncommon for teenagers and young adults to work in order to support their families." 

Syrian government forces take biggest rebel-held district of Aleppo Syrian government forces have taken "full control" of the rebel-held district of Masaken Hanano in the northern battlefield city of Aleppo, state media said on Saturday (26 November). 

Inside east Aleppo's last hospital: 'No space to walk' East Aleppo's 'only hospital' struggles with damaged equipment, lack of space and an insufficient amount of supplies.

Syrian rebels' resistance 'waning' as thousands of people flee Aleppo Rebel fighters retreated on Sunday (27 November) as advancing Syrian troops threatened to split them in two. Thousands of people fled to areas under government control, either due to starvation, the continued air assault or the advance of Syrian troops.

Syrian army captures second rebel district in Aleppo Assad forces capture Jabal Badro and intensify air raids in and around the city, killing 15 civilians in Anjara village on 27 November.


Regional and International Perspectives

Shia militia law adds to the challenges in Iraq Iraq’s parliament has recently passed a law that formally integrated the volunteer paramilitary organization known as Hashed Al Shaabi into the security forces. According to the law, the militia will be an “independent military entity” operating within the country’s armed forces.

Analysis: Trump Is the U.S. President Assad Has Been Waiting For The new U.S. president wants his Syrian counterpart to stay. Journalist Annia Ciezadlo explains what that’s going to mean for the nearly half of Syrian civilians who are stranded by war. 

Militant Islamist groups believe Trump's rhetoric will help recruitment From Afghanistan to Algeria, jihadists plan to use Donald Trump's shocking U.S. presidential victory as a propaganda tool to bring new fighters to their battlefields.

Donald Trump Jr. Held Talks on Syria With Russia Supporters Disclosure of the Paris meetings in October could heighten focus on the president-elect’s desire to cooperate with the Kremlin. 

Turkey advances on Islamic State capital of Raqqa as U.S.-backed coalition crumbles Carlo Muñoz writes "While the U.S.-backed campaign to retake the city of Mosul from the Islamic State in Iraq makes slow but steady progress, the battle for Raqqa, Syria, the “capital” of the group’s self-styled caliphate, has gotten off to a much shakier start, with various factions of the U.S.-backed coalition already at odds."

Europe can stop Syria's suffering Shiyar Khaleal writes about his visit to Brussels, on 16 November, with a delegation of Syrian human rights lawyers and former detainees to meet with senior EU diplomats.

The Time for Leadership to Protect All Civilians Across Syria Hind Kabawat writes: "The protection of civilians remains paramount to ending this crisis. As a member of the High Negotiations Committee I strongly believe in the political solution, and front and center of our vision for a future Syria is the protection of civilians, including all minorities in Syria. There is a myth that the Assad regime is the ‘protector’ of these minorities."

First U.S. service member killed in Syria was a bomb disposal technician A U.S. Navy bomb disposal technician was killed by an improvised explosive device in northern Syria on Thursday (24 November), the Pentagon announced in a statement. 

The State Department's Wrongheaded Push for War With Syria Representative Tulsi Gabbard tells The Nation ‎why US intervention will only worsen Syria’s humanitarian crisis.

Tulsi Gabbard Agrees with Donald Trump on Syria Riad Alarian writes: "Gabbard was not joking when she said “put our country first.” A closer inspection of Gabbard’s statements on Syria reveal that she is not exactly an “advocate for peace,” and is, indeed, playing politics with the lives of Syrians as an “advocate for America.”

Could Trump Make Things Even Worse in Syria? Joshua Keating writes: "As for the Syrian civil war: Trump seems intent on getting the U.S. out of it, with the exception of killing terrorists."

America's Assad Quandary An excruciating fact confronts us: it does not necessarily follow that Bashar al-Assad’s departure would improve the situation in Syria.

Media Blackout As Millions Of Muslims March Against ISIS In Iraq The Iraqi city of Karbala, where the holy shrine of the third Shia Imam -Imam Hussein- is located, is swarming with millions of devoted Muslims, both Shiites and Sunnis, for mourning rituals marking Arbaeen, known as the largest religious gathering in the world.

France to convene Syria talks, accuses Assad, allies of waging 'total war' France accused Syria and its allies on Wednesday (23 November) of using political uncertainty in the United States to launch "total war" against rebel-held areas in the country and said states opposed to President Bashar al-Assad would meet in Paris soon.

Women on the Frontline in Syria November 25, 2016 marks the beginning of the global 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign. In the context of this year’s campaign, Women on the Frontline will bring to the fore the work being done by the Women on the Frontline members in Syria to end violence against Syrian women and to stipulate the elimination of this violence as a precondition for rebuilding a peaceful Syria.

ISIS: A catastrophe for Sunnis Many have suffered under the Islamic State, but the misery inflicted on Sunnis will resonate for generations.

MPs demand Theresa May permits aid drops to Aleppo More than 120 MPs – including former Tory cabinet ministers Michael Gove and Andrew Mitchell – call on Theresa May, on Saturday 26 November, to authorise immediate airdrops of food and medicine to ease the desperate plight of adults and children trapped in besieged areas of Syria.


Policy and Reports

A Voice From the Shadows The head of Syria’s Air Force Intelligence Directorate says Bashar al-Assad has shown too much restraint in Syria.

Children of the Caliphate What to Do About Kids Born Under ISIS Nadim Houry address the problem of children who were born in the self-proclaimed “caliphate” of the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) and have no citizenship and have not been able to enroll in school in Iraq. Houry says "If nothing is done to address the situation, a new group of stateless children living on the margins of already fragile and fragmented states such as Iraq, Syria, and Libya will emerge." 

Ankara-PKK divisions could have major impact on Raqqa battle As the operation to clear Raqqa from IS continues, tensions are rising in the al-Bab region to the north of Aleppo, where a clash between Free Syrian Army forces supported by Turkey and local fighters backed by the People's Protection Units is becoming more likely. 

A brief history of war and drugs: From Vikings to Nazis From World War II to Vietnam and Syria, drugs are often as much a part of conflict as bombs and bullets.


Syria Conflict Mapping Project Reports

Aleppo: Who controls what Aleppo, once Syria's largest city, is an important battleground in the war with at least 250,000 besieged in the east.

OVERVIEW OF MILITARY SITUATION IN ALEPPO CITY ON NOVEMBER 25, 2016 Syrian government forces are developing momentum in eastern Aleppo. 


Documentaries, Special Reports, and Other Media

The Free Syrian Army: A Decentralized Insurgent Brand A new 44-page report by Charles Lister published by the Brookings Institute.

Syrian Art – Narratives of Hope, Despair and Resilience In this introductory piece about a new series on Syrian art, Nathalie Rosa Bucher writes: "Nearly six years after coming to Beirut in significant numbers, many Syrian artists have claimed new segments of the city’s artscape, although they have always been part of the Lebanese art scene, especially visual artists."

Piecing back together an Iraqi archaeological gem blown sky-high by Isis The ancient Assyrian city of Kalhu fascinated tourists until extremists set about erasing it because it pre-dates Islam.

How this Montreal photographer is empowering young Canadian newcomers to process their past Amina Jalabi is teaching a group of young women and men from Syria to document their experiences. 

Fleeing Assad, Syrian actor finds new hope for his dreams in Hollywood Omar Al Muqdad interviews Syrian American actor Jihad Abdo about his journey from Syria to Hollywood.

Syria's refugee cooks Syrians, driven abroad by war, are introducing their cuisine to the rest of the world. Food has always been at the heart of Syrian identity, and for nearly a million refugees that is true in a new, sharper way.


Arabic Links:

التعليم في الرقة، نتائج الحرب وتعدد السلطات Ahmed Mohamed explores the situation of education in Al-Raqqah Governorate after the Syrian regime lost control of the area on 4 March, 2016. 

الموصل- حلب- الرقة: معارك متزامنة لها ما بعدها This is an analysis of three battles that are going on in Aleppo, Al-Raqqah, and Mosul and their potential regional and international impacts.

خطة تعليمية جديدة للطلاب السوريين في تركيا! The Ministry of National Education in Turkey issued a new educational plan for Syrians learning schools in Turkey to increase the number of classes that are taught in Turkish language.

هل سيتجه الحشد الشعبي الى سورية بعد تحرير الموصل؟ As the liberation of Mosul nears, the Popular Mobilization Units announced that they have received an invitation from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to fight in Syria.

After Mosul battle, is Syria next for PMU?

The English version of this article can be found here:

دي ميستورا لـ «الحياة»: هزيمة «داعش» تتطلب حلاً سياسياً ... ومشاركة الغالبية السُنّية Ibrahim Hamidi interviews Staffan de Mistura who denies his intention to resign from his post and emphasizes that defeating ISIS needs not only a military alliance but also a comprehensive political solution.

صوتٌ من الظل Aron Lund comments on the interview that a Russian news site conducted with head of Syria’s Air Force Intelligence, Lieutenant General Jamil al-Hassan.

The English version of this article can be found here: A Voice From the Shadows

12 ضابطاً سورياً توعّدتهم واشنطن كمجرمي حرب Samantha Power affirms that at least 12 military and security leaders in the Syrian al-Assad regime will be held accountable for their war crimes.

مؤلفة "هاري بوتر" ترسل كتاباً لطفلة محاصرة بحلب! J. K. Rowling sent eBooks of the entire Harry Potter fantasy series to Bana Alabed a young Syrian girl with over 100,000 followers on Twitter who says she likes to read "to forget the war." 

وثيقة أوروبية عن مستقبل سورية: نظام لامركزي وحصص للأقليات والعلويين An official European document--prepared by Federica Mogherinithe the current High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy--suggests four elements to reach future Syria: political system of accountability, decentralization, reconciliation, and reconstruction. 

If you prefer, email your comments to




Apply for an ASI Internship now!


Political Economy Project

Issues a

Call for Letters of Interest


Jadaliyya Launches its

Political Economy




F O R    T H E    C L A S S R O O M 

Roundtable: Harold Wolpe’s Intellectual Agenda and Writing on Palestine


The 1967 Defeat and the Conditions of the Now: A Roundtable


E N G A G E M E N T