The Syrian Refugee Crisis: More Than A War

October 6th 2015 – By: William Larsen – Civilians News – “News For All Views” – The Syrian Refugee Crisis: More Than A War – 

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

On one hand, President Assad’s military has limited free speech and committed several human rights atrocities. Worse yet, these violations of human rights have routinely been carried out against Syrian civilians.

On the other hand, many of the Syrian rebels themselves are linked to Al Qaeda and ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). Conversely, these government opposition groups are 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. However, one aspect simply cannot be ignored…..   Today as I write this sentence…. 6.5 million Syrian refugees have escaped the violence in Syria, with no where to call home.

6.5 Million refugees have fled Syria due to the Syrian Refugee Crisis. Photo from; 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;
TOPSHOTS A Syrian man walks amid destruction in the northern Syrian city of Aleppo on April 10, 2013.

European Tension

To make this situation more complex, many European nations have already reached a boiling point in terms of immigration issues. Countries like France, Britain and Greece, have already accepted large influx’s of immigrants and many Europeans now feel as though their heritage is being washed away.

The ex-President of France, Nikolas Sarkozy once said something along the lines of this;

“France is no longer going to be France anymore, if our immigration is not quelled.” This was a cynical and pungent jab at the immigration occurring in Europe today.

For more information about the ex French President’s stance on immigration click here….

The issue of immigration itself, is very polarizing abroad, particularly in countries like France. This is especially true in nations with a great deal of heritage and historical identity.

So, 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….. These are also very scary ideals, in an ever changing world.

Simultaneously, America has avoided the conflict…

Yet, this crisis in and of itself, simply cannot be ignored.

So What About The Refugees?

Today, 6.5 million Syrian refugees are struggling for their lives. These poor individuals, fleeing both an oppressive regime and terrorist groups, are struggling for the barest of human necessities today.

From my perspective, it seems that the Assad Regime, as well as the guerrilla insurgents, have several long standing disagreements over cultural issues. These disagreements spill over into conflict with western ideals, such as religion, language, woman’s rights and an increasingly 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 what I view as the motives behind the Islamic terrorist groups, in and around Syria today.

So Who Are The Terrorists?

The ISIS militants are not merely a group of rag tag fighters. However, Obama himself labeled this group, “Al Qaeda’s JV team,” just last year. Nevertheless, this group has been in control of a landmass larger than the UK, for many years. This area, near Syria, is controlled by ISIS, however is not vastly populated.

In this area, people mostly live rural lifestyles according to the “old ways.”  Many in this area are hermits and abide by strict religious tenure. Nevertheless, this landmass does represent power controlled by ISIS and continues to be a very important land mass, in a very turbulent, hostile region.

In my opinion, this has presumably led to the conflict within Syria today.

*(As a Civilian of the US, I am slightly under-informed, but this is how I view the conflict from here in America.)

Syria Vs ISIS?

The ISIS platform is a dissension from Middle Eastern governments and a radical neo-conservative belief system. This group acts with the goal to stop the spread of Western culture in the Middle East. Also, this group is said to reign over their territories with strict religious laws and beliefs.

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has led ISIS since 2010 and appears to have labeled himself as the next Islamic “Caliph.” This is 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 this group within Syria. However, President Assad has done so, by denying this group free speech and using “barrel bombs” to horrifically kill many Islamic militants AND CIVILIANS……

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:

So why doesn’t Europe accept the 6 million refugees? 

This circumstance is particularly troubling for a variety of reasons. In particular, this situation is incredibly complicated due to recent terror attacks in France. These attacks, carried out by groups located in and around Syria include the recent killing of French journalist Charlie Hebdo. This attack particularly hurts immigrants looking to move east for political reasons. This is due to fear incited from terrorists in and around Syria. This is particularly troubling because Hebdo was killed simply for depicting Allah in a commercial publication……..

This situation puts Western leaders between a rock and a hard place, when dealing with Syrian immigrants.

Where on one hand, if the U.S. aids the Assad Regime they are taking the side of limiting free speech and siding with a Syrian government known for killing it’s own citizens…… However, on the other hand, if the U.S. aids the militants, then they will be empowering groups directly tied to ISIS and Al Qaeda.

Nevertheless, for many years human rights violations within Syria, have been notoriously disgusting among the international community.

From 1963, through 2011, Syrian officials have been given the power to arrest and detain citizens for any reason they so choose. This includes but is not limited to, speaking out against the Syrian government….. This apprehension of free speech stands against western beliefs.

Nevertheless, it is without a doubt that something must be done for the 6.4 million Syrian refugees.

In this way, this crisis represents a political boiling point in terms of; immigration, free of speech, woman’s rights and even religious discourse. Furthermore, if these issues are not soon resolved then perhaps another 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. photo from

What About The Future?

To make matters worse, in 50 to 100 years, Middle Eastern oil supplies will run dry……

When that time comes how will Middle Eastern governments react?

For this reason, the situation in Syria today could foreshadow a larger conflict down the road.

When hundreds of billions of dollars in annual oil revenue are no longer present, how will Middle Eastern governments react in the future? This issue, along with religious tensions, could create further fighting in the future….. Furthermore, without discussing these issues TODAY, these problems may lead to greater conflicts later on.

That is why Civilians News has tackled this issue head on today. It is essential that Americans begin these conversations today. Many mass media outlets in the West, strictly report about the extremist nature of ISIS and ISIL. However, often times these reports ignore the bigger picture. In turn this practice delays conversations about the future of this region and could contribute to further conflicts. In this way, the Syrian Refugee Crisis represent more than just war.

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

-William Larsen