Accuracy • Independence • Integrity

March 19, 2018   |   Ithaca, NY

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Remembering the Syrian War

The Syrian War began seven years ago, and although it has been widely forgotten by the daily news cycle, the war seems to be getting exponentially worse.

On Feb. 6, at least 80 people were killed in Syrian government air and artillery strikes in Damascus. United Nations humanitarian officials even called the attack “extreme” in the midst of seven years of atrocities.

In the last few weeks, more hospitals have burned down thanks to airstrikes, there has been another suspected chlorine attack — one of five since January — and bombed apartment buildings have collapsed on civilians. At the same time, the government, with Russian aid, has increased their air war on major rebel-held areas in the north and south of the country.

United States involvement in the Syrian war is something that hasn’t been discussed outside of “morally correct” liberal arts school politics classes. It is always thrown as a hypothetical of humanitarian intervention for the U.S. to redeem itself as a superhero of the world seeing that its previous attempts have shattered the political bedrock of the Middle East.

The atrocities in Aleppo —- as well as in the rest of the country — have done little to catch the eye of anyone other than theoretical 20-something liberals who feel that they have something to prove by bringing a solution to the many layers of destruction in Syria. The problem is that they try to tackle the problem without genuinely addressing the root of it, or believe that a theoretical framework democracy and free markets being reigned in by military tanks or modern day “diplomacy” does not work everywhere. They fail to understand the complexities and layers of the Syrian Civil War, because frankly, who does?

Before being able to talk about solutions to the Syrian conflict, there needs to be more conversations about the conflict itself. There has been little to no coverage on the war save for death tolls and territorial overthrows; at the end of the day, most people do not know who the actors are or how they came about in the first place.

If news sources would give readers a more comprehensive idea of what is going on on the ground, then, maybe then, U.S. politics majors might stop trying to address symptoms without understanding the virus.

Just knowing that human rights atrocities are happening is not enough to make a caseandpoint argument to intervene and tackle the problem, “problem” being a very ambiguous term encapsulating decades worth of context.

Again, this is a very theoretical hypothesis that also counts on the U.S. to get off of its godly high horse.

Isabella Grullón Paz can be reached at or via Twitter: @isagp23