vicenews:

Meet the Kurdish Motorcycle Gang Helping Syrian Refugees in Iraq

vicenews:

Meet the Kurdish Motorcycle Gang Helping Syrian Refugees in Iraq

vicenews:

Last time we checked in on British Jihadists, they were posting snaps of themselves messing about in swimming pools, hoarding Cadbury’s chocolates from home, and generally having a good time. Everything has changed.

"Behead first, ask questions later"

vicenews:

Last time we checked in on British Jihadists, they were posting snaps of themselves messing about in swimming pools, hoarding Cadbury’s chocolates from home, and generally having a good time. Everything has changed.

"Behead first, ask questions later"

The Syrian War Keeps Getting Worse for the People of Aleppo
A year ago, almost to the day, I watched a graffiti artist named Khalifa paint a huge smiley face onto a wall. The wall was pretty much all that remained of the house it had been part of, and every other house on the street was in a similarly bad state. The day before, the street had been hit by a Scud missile: That was Aleppo, Syria, in 2013.
Khalifa had sprayed a slogan next to the smiley face. It read, in Arabic, “Tomorrow this will be beautiful.”
He was wrong.

The Syrian War Keeps Getting Worse for the People of Aleppo

A year ago, almost to the day, I watched a graffiti artist named Khalifa paint a huge smiley face onto a wall. The wall was pretty much all that remained of the house it had been part of, and every other house on the street was in a similarly bad state. The day before, the street had been hit by a Scud missile: That was Aleppo, Syria, in 2013.

Khalifa had sprayed a slogan next to the smiley face. It read, in Arabic, “Tomorrow this will be beautiful.”

He was wrong.

vicenews:

Eric Harroun, the US Army vet who went to Syria to fight with the Free Syrian Army, has died at 31.

vicenews:

Eric Harroun, the US Army vet who went to Syria to fight with the Free Syrian Army, has died at 31.

motherboardtv:

Climate Change-Fueled Droughts Are About to Make Syria Even More Hellish

motherboardtv:

Climate Change-Fueled Droughts Are About to Make Syria Even More Hellish

Syrian Children Are Drawing to Heal the Trauma from War 
In an upscale district of Downtown Beirut, two pre-teen boys rapped in Arabic during an exhibit showcasing the artwork of Syrian refugee children. Ramzi, a 12-year-old originally from Daraa, Syria, beatboxed as his friend Ayham, who is also from Daraa, spit rhymes. Guests watched quietly, impressed, as the two boys recalled life before the uprising-turned-civil war wreaked havoc on their country.
This was part of an exhibit, called “Light Against Darkness,” the result of a three month art workshop that focused on helping children overcome the trauma of war through creative expression. Forty-three children produced about 166 works of drawings and clay sculptures, many of which depicted colorful renditions of schools, kids playing together, and families bonding.
Others, however, were not so cheery. Suha Wanous, a young girl originally from Latakia but who arrived to Lebanon from Damascus, the Syrian capital, drew a daughter holding her mother’s hand while a gun is pressed to her head point-blank. In the background of the picture, it’s raining and a helicopter is opening fire on a home while two small children lay on the grass bleeding, presumably dead. The organizers of the exhibit explained how Suha used to pass an army checkpoint daily before going to school back in Syria. She used to greet the soldiers Assalamu Alaykum (meaning “peace be upon you” in Arabic.)
Continue

Syrian Children Are Drawing to Heal the Trauma from War 

In an upscale district of Downtown Beirut, two pre-teen boys rapped in Arabic during an exhibit showcasing the artwork of Syrian refugee children. Ramzi, a 12-year-old originally from Daraa, Syria, beatboxed as his friend Ayham, who is also from Daraa, spit rhymes. Guests watched quietly, impressed, as the two boys recalled life before the uprising-turned-civil war wreaked havoc on their country.

This was part of an exhibit, called “Light Against Darkness,” the result of a three month art workshop that focused on helping children overcome the trauma of war through creative expression. Forty-three children produced about 166 works of drawings and clay sculptures, many of which depicted colorful renditions of schools, kids playing together, and families bonding.

Others, however, were not so cheery. Suha Wanous, a young girl originally from Latakia but who arrived to Lebanon from Damascus, the Syrian capital, drew a daughter holding her mother’s hand while a gun is pressed to her head point-blank. In the background of the picture, it’s raining and a helicopter is opening fire on a home while two small children lay on the grass bleeding, presumably dead. The organizers of the exhibit explained how Suha used to pass an army checkpoint daily before going to school back in Syria. She used to greet the soldiers Assalamu Alaykum (meaning “peace be upon you” in Arabic.)

Continue

Recuperating Memories in Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp
Above: Photo by Nina Berman/NOOR
Four photographers from the distinguished Amsterdam-based photojournalism collective NOOR spent New Years in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Located 18 miles from the Syrian border, the camp opened with just 100 families in July 2012. It now hosts around 120,000 residents, making it the second-largest refugee camp in the world. VICE’s Robert King documented life in this camp last fall, just 72 hours after the sarin gas attack in Damascus forced even more Syrians out of their homes. One of the many challenges that residents of Zaatari face is the lack of any physical evidence of memory. In most cases refugees arrive at Zaatari with just the clothes on their back, leaving behind photographs of family and loved ones. Now, these photographers are attempting to recuperate those memories and give them permanence. 
 
Between Christmas and the fifth of January, Nina Berman, Andrea Bruce, Alixandra Fazzina, and Stanley Greene—supported by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and Japan Emergency NGOs (JEN)—turned a large tent into a photo booth where refugees could come and have their portraits made. Refugees were asked to bring an object they cherished or, if they didn’t have anything, to bring a person they loved. A boy came wrapped in his blanket. A man brought his shisha pipe. A mother posed with her five children. In all, about 300 portraits were printed on the spot and given to people to keep.  
Continue

Recuperating Memories in Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp

Above: Photo by Nina Berman/NOOR

Four photographers from the distinguished Amsterdam-based photojournalism collective NOOR spent New Years in the Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Located 18 miles from the Syrian border, the camp opened with just 100 families in July 2012. It now hosts around 120,000 residents, making it the second-largest refugee camp in the world. VICE’s Robert King documented life in this camp last fall, just 72 hours after the sarin gas attack in Damascus forced even more Syrians out of their homes. One of the many challenges that residents of Zaatari face is the lack of any physical evidence of memory. In most cases refugees arrive at Zaatari with just the clothes on their back, leaving behind photographs of family and loved ones. Now, these photographers are attempting to recuperate those memories and give them permanence. 
 
Between Christmas and the fifth of January, Nina BermanAndrea BruceAlixandra Fazzina, and Stanley Greene—supported by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and Japan Emergency NGOs (JEN)—turned a large tent into a photo booth where refugees could come and have their portraits made. Refugees were asked to bring an object they cherished or, if they didn’t have anything, to bring a person they loved. A boy came wrapped in his blanket. A man brought his shisha pipe. A mother posed with her five children. In all, about 300 portraits were printed on the spot and given to people to keep.  

Continue

vicenews:

VICE News Capsule, March 18 

The VICE News Capsule is a daily roundup that looks beyond the headlines. Today: Myanmar’s war on opium, the Taliban destroyed Pakistan’s silk industry, the UK pulls out of Afghanistan and serious starvation risk among Syrian refugee children.

Is Facebook Censoring the Syrian Opposition?
Last December, a woman from the Syrian community in Toronto reached out to me for help after a Syrian opposition Facebook page, for which she was an administrator, was expunged from the internet. She told me that Facebook had deleted the page, called Likes for Syria, in mid December, by which time it had garnered more than 80,000 “likes.” Several Syrian Canadians had organized the page shortly after the revolution in Syria began, back in 2011, and used it as a tool for posting news stories about the crisis, spreading messages of hope, and creating awareness in the Western world—something that many feel is desperately needed.
“We feel like our freedom of speech has been totally taken away,” said Faris Alshawaf, another administrator for Likes for Syria. “We have a right to talk about what is happening.” Facebook had removed the page once before but quickly republished it after administrators made an appeal. Just days later, Facebook deleted the page a second time.  
Yet Likes for Syria is hardly alone. In the past six months, Facebook has deleted dozens of opposition pages—including one started by Syrian youth roughly a month before the revolution begun—because they allegedly violate the company’s Community Standardspolicy and Terms of Use agreement. Two weeks ago, the Atlantic reported that Facebook opposition pages were disappearing. While I was doing more research about the issue, Facebook took down another page. This time, it erased the Syrian Coalition page, a move that shocked administrators and caused panic in the Syrian community, as it was seen as one of the most important and safe pages of the revolution. People from the Syrian community reached out to me again and sent me screenshot images of what had been reported to Facebook. It seemed clear that many of the images would have been very hard to take offense to and were not violent in nature.   
Continue

Is Facebook Censoring the Syrian Opposition?

Last December, a woman from the Syrian community in Toronto reached out to me for help after a Syrian opposition Facebook page, for which she was an administrator, was expunged from the internet. She told me that Facebook had deleted the page, called Likes for Syria, in mid December, by which time it had garnered more than 80,000 “likes.” Several Syrian Canadians had organized the page shortly after the revolution in Syria began, back in 2011, and used it as a tool for posting news stories about the crisis, spreading messages of hope, and creating awareness in the Western world—something that many feel is desperately needed.

“We feel like our freedom of speech has been totally taken away,” said Faris Alshawaf, another administrator for Likes for Syria. “We have a right to talk about what is happening.” Facebook had removed the page once before but quickly republished it after administrators made an appeal. Just days later, Facebook deleted the page a second time.  

Yet Likes for Syria is hardly alone. In the past six months, Facebook has deleted dozens of opposition pages—including one started by Syrian youth roughly a month before the revolution begun—because they allegedly violate the company’s Community Standardspolicy and Terms of Use agreement. Two weeks ago, the Atlantic reported that Facebook opposition pages were disappearing. While I was doing more research about the issue, Facebook took down another page. This time, it erased the Syrian Coalition page, a move that shocked administrators and caused panic in the Syrian community, as it was seen as one of the most important and safe pages of the revolution. People from the Syrian community reached out to me again and sent me screenshot images of what had been reported to Facebook. It seemed clear that many of the images would have been very hard to take offense to and were not violent in nature.   

Continue

vicenews:

The war in Syria is dragging neighbouring Lebanon to the edge of the abyss, and nowhere is the growing chaos more stark than in the second city of Tripoli. Watch Part 5 of our new video Warlords of Tripoli

(Source: Vice Magazine)

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