The Syrian Refugee Crisis: More Than A War

By: William Larsen – October 6th 2015 – Civilians News – “News For All Views

Looking to help the 6.5 million Syrian Refugees? Go to …. UNICEF’s donation page and contribute to humanitarian relief efforts today.

Click here and make a donation today.  https://www.unicefusa.org/donate/help-syrian-children/

What Syria’s going through today, is one of the bloodiest civil insurgencies in Middle Eastern history.

On one hand, President Assad’s military police, have limited free speech and committed several, rather atrocious human rights violations, mostly against Syrian civilians. On the other hand, many of the Syrian rebels themselves, are linked with Al Qaeda and ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), groups also known for creating “disturbances” in the Middle East and abroad.

Meanwhile, the western world has become increasingly disturbed by both sides of the equation and one aspect simply cannot be ignored…..   Today, as I write this article…. 6.5 million refugees have left Syria, in hopes of fleeing the violence.

6.5 Million refugees have fled Syria due to the Syrian Refugee Crisis. Photo from; news.nationalpost.com TOPSHOTS A Syrian man walks amid destruction in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on April 10, 2013. The United States is mulling ways to step up support for the Syrian opposition, a top US official said, as US Secretary of State John Kerry and G8 ministers were to meet rebel leaders. AFP PHOTO / DIMITAR DILKOFFDIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP/Getty Images

Photo from; news.nationalpost.com
TOPSHOTS A Syrian man walks amid destruction in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on April 10, 2013. The United States is mulling ways to step up support for the Syrian opposition, a top US official said, as US Secretary of State John Kerry and G8 ministers were to meet rebel leaders. AFP PHOTO / DIMITAR DILKOFFDIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP/Getty Images

Making the situation more complex, many European nations have already reached a boiling point domestically, in regards to immigration issues. Countries like France, Britain and Greece, have large influx’s of immigrants from recent decades and many Europeans now feel as though their heritage is being washed away by new citizens, many of which are descending from Eur-Asian, African and Middle Eastern nations. The ex-President of France, Nikolas Sarkozy once said something along the lines of; “France is no longer going to be France anymore, if immigration is not quelled.” A cynical and pungent jab at the  immigration situation occurring in Europe today.

For more about the ex French Presidents stance on immigration click here….

The issue of immigration itself, is very polarizing abroad, particularly in countries like France, with a great deal of national heritage and many historical and cultural identities. Will an influx of immigrants from other nations, one day wash out European culture altogether? Many who disagree, may view this philosophy as ultra nationalist and neo-conservative….. also very scary ideals, in an ever changing world.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has maintained a distance from the Syrian Refugee Crisis…. yet, the crisis itself cannot be ignored. Today, 6.5 million Syrian refugees are struggling for their lives, struggling for the barest of human necessities, such as food, while many are unsure where to flea the fighting.

Furthermore, fighting in Syria should be considered a lesson for many nations,  currently dealing with similar issues domestically and abroad. In many ways, the Syrian civil war is simply a boiling point, a tip of the ice-burg so to speak, between many greater issues abroad. From my perspective, it seems that the Assad Regime and the guerrilla insurgents, have many long standing disagreements over cultural issues, such as woman’s rights and what many in the Middle East likely view as an exceedingly “Western World.”

For decades, hardcore extremists in the region have found the consumption of alcohol, the freedom of sexuality and even the concept of interest on loans, to stand in the face of Islamic beliefs (this is my westernized opinion, maybe I’m wrong).

This is how I view the motives of Islamic terrorist groups, in and around Syria. However, the ISIS militants are not merely a group of rag tag fighters. Obama labeled this group “Al Qaeda’s JV team,” last year, however this group has been said to control a landmass in the Middle East, larger than the United Kingdom. This area controlled by ISIS, is not vastly populated and lives according to the old ways of life. Many in the area are hermits and abide by strict religious tenure, regardless, ISIS continues to control a very important land mass, in a very turbulent and hostile region today. This is presumably, in my opinion, what has led to the conflict with the Syrian government today. *(As a Civilian of the US, I am slightly under-informed, but this is how I believe Americans view the conflict today.)

The ISIS platform is a dissension from many Middle Eastern governments and a radical neo-conservative approach, with the goal to stop the spread of Western culture in the Middle East, and reign over their territories with strictly religious laws and beliefs. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has led ISIS since 2010, and appears to have labeled himself as the next Islamic “Caliph” a term reserved for the highest leader of Islam, dating back to biblical times.

In opposition, it appears to me, that the Assad Regime has quelled the group within Syria, denying them free speech and even using “barrel bombs” to horrifically kill many Islamic militants…… This has created a rift, where on one hand the militants are being denied free speech and being attacked by the Syrian government, but on the other hand, Syria is harboring terrorist organizations responsible for horrific acts all around the world.

ISIS, the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq controls a landmass larger than the UK within Iraq and Syria. A known sanctuary for terrorist organizations.

ISIS, the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq controls a landmass larger than the UK within Iraq and Syria. A known sanctuary for terrorist organizations. Photo from: ktla.com

This situation in Syria today, is especially troubling however, in the wake of terrorist attacks in France and Europe, including the recent act of killing a French journalist simply for depicting Allah, in its commercial publication……..

This situation puts United States leaders between a rock and a hard place, so to speak. If the U.S. aids the Assad Regime, they are taking the side of limiting free speech and siding with a government known for killing it’s own citizens…… However, if the U.S. aids the militants, they will be helping groups directly associated with Al Qaeda and ISIS.

For many years, human rights violations within Syria, have been regarded as notoriously disgusting among the international community. From 1963-2011 government officials within Syria have been given the power to arrest and detain citizens, for any reason they so choose, including speaking against the Syrian government….. This apprehension of free speech stands against western beliefs and in my personal opinion, disgusts me. If Civilians News was born in Syria, there is a strong likelihood that I would have already been arrested…….

Regardless, it is without a doubt that something must be done, geo-politically. Recently Russian officials, also known at times for being more “authoritarian” in regards to matters of free speech….  Have taken the side of the Assad Regime, combating the ISIS militants. This past week, Russian forces dealt a vicious blow to the militants, through air strikes which one can assume, has all but crushed the ISIS forces…… Regardless, just last September, according to the Atlantic, ISIS leaders issued this chilling statement;

“Last September, Sheikh Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, the Islamic State’s chief spokesman, called on Muslims in Western countries such as France and Canada to find an infidel and “smash his head with a rock,” poison him, run him over with a car, or “destroy his crops.”

For these reasons, the Syrian Refugee crisis represents a chilling reminder of tensions between the Western and Islamic world….. A situation where ultimately, neo conservative beliefs on both sides, could cause harm in tempering down what has often felt like, “never ending violence, over religious and cultural disputes.”

This crisis represents a boiling point for issues such as; immigration, freedom of speech, woman’s rights and even religious discourse, whereby if these issues are not soon resolved, then perhaps further war is unavoidable.

The transition away from oil, could make these issues more important in the future in hopes of preventing future wars.... and secular aggression....

The transition away from oil, could make these issues more important in the future in hopes of preventing future wars…. and secular aggression…. photo from bakken.com.

Furthermore, it is said that in 50-100 years oil supplies in the Middle East will run out…… How will Middle Eastern governments react when hundreds of billions of dollars worth of annual oil revenue are no longer present? How will Middle Eastern civilizations transition towards a new global economy, when such an economically powerful resource is no longer available, in years to come? This issue, along with religious tensions, could create further fighting in the future….. and without discussing these issues TODAY, these problems may lead to more wars, in the future.

That is why, Civilians News has tackled the issue today, despite the Syrian Refugee Crisis being such a “hot button” and polarizing topic in the western world today. Many mass media outlets, simply report about the extremist nature of ISIS and ISIL, within the United States, however Civilians News is not a corporately controlled news outlet and has instead focused on the bigger picture, describing both sides of the conflict…..

Thank you for reading. Civilians News – “News For All Views

-William Larsen

PS: Please comment, I would love to hear feedback!