Six must-read opinions on Syria’s sixth war anniversary

On the day of the sixth anniversary of the civil war, here are the opinions that shed light on what happened in Syria.

Activists gather to mark fourth anniversary of Syrian unrest
Lebanese and Syrian activists mark the fourth anniversary of the Syrian revolution against the regime of Bashar al-Assad, in Martyrs Square, downtown Beirut, Lebanon, on March 15, 2015 [Reuters]
The Assad conundrum, by John Bell

Some argued that without his rule, radical Islamists such as ISIL would take over Syria.

[SANA handout/Reuters][SANA handout/Reuters]

It's the deeper societal and cultural work, not the Assad conundrum, that's required to move Syria slowly, but surely, towards health.

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Aleppo: The guilt, the resentment, the indifference, by Riham Alkousaa

On the schizophrenia of celebrating and mourning Aleppo.

[Omar Sanadiki/Reuters][Omar Sanadiki/Reuters]

What is happening in Aleppo is truly historic, as Assad said the other day. It is the spectacular tearing apart of a once united nation, to the point that its people can no longer agree on basic principles of humanity.

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The ‘Palestinisation’ of the Syrian people, by Robin Yassin-Kassab

Or how Aleppo and Syria were abandoned by the world.


Victory for Assad is also a victory for ISIL.

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And who are we to say the Syrian revolution is dead? by Malak Chabkoun

The spirit of the revolution in Syria persists, even as Assad’s forces advance.

[Mohammed Badra/EPA][Mohammed Badra/EPA]

Declaring the Syrian revolution dead reduces it - and all the sacrifices Syrians have made - to a military conflict, and once again plays directly into the narratives of despots and dictators in the Arab world who treated the Arab Spring as their personal invitation to further destroy their own peoples.

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What the Spanish civil war can reveal about Syria, by Ibrahim al-Marashi

The Spanish civil war spanned three years – why has the Syrian conflict endured so much longer?

[FPG/Hulton Archive/Getty Images][FPG/Hulton Archive/Getty Images]

Both civil wars involved fighting for two major urban centres, the capitals, Madrid and Damascus, and two rebellious urban centres, Barcelona and Aleppo. The Republicans, like the Syrian rebels, suffered from infighting that ultimately weakened its ranks.

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Inside Bashar al-Assad’s mind, by James Denselow

Syria is a conflict with no breaks and Assad himself is insulated in its cockpit.

[SANA handout/EPA][SANA handout/EPA]

Simply calling Assad evil and leaving it at that abrogates a responsibility to better investigate what powers and influence he does and doesn't hold and to reveal the political science that has kept his regime in power.

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