Mark Boothroyd has gathered together news sites, analysis, cultural archives and links to a number of the best short films and documentaries to help in understanding the situation in Syria.
The Syrian revolution has generated an immense amount of written coverage, analysis and culture. It can be hard to separate truth from propaganda given the competing world powers, complex situation and vicious regime waging war against the Syrian people. Gathered here are trusted and reliable sources, which report truthfully and accurately about events on the ground in Syria in English. There is a mixture of news sites, analysis, cultural archives and links to a number of the best short films and documentaries produced about the Syrian revolt.
News and information
- EA Worldview
http://eaworldview.com/A news and analysis website, with a focus on the Syrian conflict and the wider Middle East. Edited by Scott Lucas, Professor of International Politics at the University of Birmingham.
- Syria Deeply
http://www.syriadeeply.org/An independent ditigal media site provided news and analysis on the Syrian revolt.
- Syria Direct
http://syriadirect.org/Syria Direct a non-profit journalism organization that produces timely, credible coverage of Syria. Founded in 2013, Syria Direct publishes original news reports, interviews ,and newsworthy photographs and videos from inside Syria along with a daily newsletter.
- ANA Press
www.facebook.com/ANAPRESS.ENANA PRESS is a news organisation that is open source on providing various forms of news reporting and solutions in media repressed areas. Provides on the ground reporting inside Syria.
Syrian Civil Society and campaigns
- The Syrian Campaign
diary.thesyriacampaign.org/A global advocacy group standing in solidarity with non-violent Syrians and their struggle for a peaceful and dignified future.
“We take action targeting people around the world whose decisions can make a difference. We support leaders who champion the needs of the Syrian people, and pressure those who fail to act. We’ve protested outside company offices, petitioned political leaders and helped get non-violent Syrians heard at the highest levels.”
- The White Helmets
www.whitehelmets.orgSyria Civil Defence are the volunteer rescue workers who provide services and rescue people from the rubble of air strikes and barrel bombs. The White Helmets is an international campaign to support their work in Syria.
- Planet Syria
A joint campaign by Syrian non-violent civil society organisations.
- Kesh Malek – Checkmate
http://en.keshmalek.org/Kesh Malek is a Syrian revolutionary civil society organization that was founded in late 2011. Most of its field activities are concentrated in the province of Aleppo, Syria. It is an independent and non-profit organization. The group believes that the Syrian revolution is the way to achieve democratic changes in Syria and to pass from an authoritarian rule to a pluralistic democratic state, which respects Human Rights and is free from all forms of tyranny and dictatorship.
https://dawlaty.org/enDawlaty is a Syrian organization committed to democracy, human rights, non-violent activism and gender equality. We produce print and audiovisual materials on these topics, hold trainings and conferences.
http://bidayyat.org/Bidayyat for Audiovisual Arts is a Syrian non-profit organization, launched in early 2013, to support and produce Syrian documentaries and short and experimental films, and to organize specialized training courses on documentary filmmaking.
Human Rights Documentation
- Violations Documentation Centre
www.vdc-sy.info/index.php/en/Violation Documentation Center in Syria is an independent, civil non-profit, non-governmental organization that started its work of monitoring and documenting the violations of human rights in Syria since April 2011.VDC monitors and documents crimes and violations against human rights in Syria, and attempts at the same time to protect and enhance these rights in the culture of Syrians. The VDC periodically publishes statistics on the database it has in the form of weekly, monthly and yearly reports in the form of percentages and illustrations, in addition to the release of dozens of human rights reports on different topics and violations in Syria
- Syrian Network for Human Rights
http://sn4hr.org/The Syrian Network for Human Rights is an independent human rights organisation that investigates and documents all violations committed by all parties involved in the Syrian conflict since 2011. It publishes regular reports and infographics on its website and facebook page.
Analysis and Advocacy
- Razan Ghazzawi
http://razanghazzawi.org/Razan Ghazzawi is a Syrian writer and activist who has participated in the revolution and written extensively about the struggle.
- Tahrir – International Collective Network
https://tahriricn.wordpress.com/A blog run by anti-authoritarian activists in the Middle East. Formed following the outbreak of the Arab Spring to provide a platform for libertarian and anti-authoritarian activists in the region. Extensive writings on Syria.
- Leila Al-Shami
https://leilashami.wordpress.com/A blog on popular struggles, human rights and social justice from an anti-authoritarian perspective by a British-Syrian activist.
- Yassin al-Haj Saleh
http://www.yassinhs.com/Saleh is a Syrian activist and Marxist, originally from Tal Abyad, in Raqqa province. Saleh spent 16 years locked up for anti-regime activism. Following the outbreak of the revolution he was part of the underground in Damascus before moving to Raqqa following its liberation. When ISIS grew in strength he was forced into exile in Turkey. Saleh has written extensively about the history, culture and politics of Syria.Help Syria now. Tomorrow it may be too late – Guardian article, published 2013
Forty Four months and Forty Four Years – A series of essays on Syria and the revolution
1 – Two Blindfolds
Syria and the Left: New Politics interview with Yassin al-Haj Saleh
- Pulse Media
http://pulsemedia.org/A collaborative political weblog featuring work by a variety of writers, activists and academics based in five continents. It is edited by Muhammad Idrees Ahmad, Robin Yassin-Kassab and Danny Postel.
- Syria Freedom Forever
https://syriafreedomforever.wordpress.com/This is the blog of Joseph Daher, a Syrian and member of the Revolutionary Left Current.
- Syrian Revolution Commentary and Analysis
- Michael Karadjis is a member of the Socialist Alliance in Australia and an academic and a deeply informed commentator on events taking place in Syria. His blog contains dozens of well researched articles and analysis of events in Syria.
- Peter Clifford Online
http://www.petercliffordonline.com/syria-iraq-news-5/Regular news and analysis on events in Iraq and Syria by Peter Clifford.
- Kyle Orton – The Syrian Intifada
https://kyleorton1991.wordpress.comNews and analysis from Kyle Orton, Middle East analyst, with a special focus on Syria, Iraq, and Iran. An Associate Fellow with the Henry Jackson Society, a foreign policy and security think tank, and a contributing editor at Left Foot Forward.
- Marcell Shehwaro
https://globalvoices.org/specialcoverage/2014-special-coverage/dispatches-from-syriamarcell-shehwaro-on-life-in-aleppo/Marcell Shehwaro is an activist from Aleppo who has written widely about the situation in Syria. She is part of the Kesh Malek, a group of activists and human rights defenders that –despite the war- keep on protesting and demonstrating against the Assad-regime and which main goal is to warrant freedoms – of press, of education, of justice – for example by providing people with revealing news and supporting projects with a similar goal.
- Jaddaliya Syria page
http://syria.jadaliyya.com/Jadaliyya is an independent ezine produced by ASI (Arab Studies Institute), the umbrella organization that produces Arab Studies Journal, Tadween Publishing, FAMA, and Quilting Point.
Jadaliyya is run and produced on a primarily voluntary basis by an editorial team and expanding pool of contributors committed to discussing the Arab world on its own terms. Where others see only a security threat, conflict, or data on a graph, we see a region inhabited by living communities and dynamic societies.
http://www.maysaloon.org/Blog of a Syrian activist
- News of the Revolution in Syria
http://notris.blogspot.co.uk/Blog covering events in Syria maintained by Dick Gregory. Contains regular updates and commentary.
- We Write What We Like
http://wewritewhatwelike.com/News and analysis on events in Syria in English and Italian. Regular translation of Arabic language pieces unavailable elsewhere on English language media.
- The Creative Memory of the Syrian Revolution
http://www.creativememory.org/?lang=enWebsite collecting culture generated by the Syrian revolt; pictures, films, songs and poetry produced by Syrians about their struggle are hosted here.
- Syria Untold
http://www.syriauntold.com/en/An independent digital media project exploring the storytelling of the Syrian struggle and the diverse forms of resistance. Run by a team of Syrian writers, journalists, programmers and designers living in the country and abroad trying to highlight the narrative of the Syrian revolution, which Syrian men and women are writing day by day.
- It’s a revolution: the cultural outpouring fueled by Syrian war
- The Spirit of the Revolution
A series of short documentaries about Syria and the revolution hosted by revolutionary activist and journalist Hadi Al-Abdullah. Produced by Balagh for Media, subtitled in English.Episode 1
https://youtu.be/0ZmcSN1fjz0 – No English translation
- Homs: The Chant of Survival
https://youtu.be/O6H1kICgMM8Documentary about the revolution in Homs, made in August 2011.
- Syria: Inside the Secret Revolution
https://youtu.be/TcvShMq5hRQBBC Panorama documentary about the revolution in Daraa
- Syria’s Torture Machinehttp://www.channel4.com/programmes/syrias-torture-machineVictims, refugees and activists who have witnessed or experienced brutality at the hands of Syrian President’s Al-Assad forces speak out.
- The Disappeared
- An unprecedented and chilling investigation into the invisible weapon of Bashar al-Assad’s regime: the kidnapping, torture and murder of tens of thousands of Syrians. Teenagers rounded up in their schools, protesters sent in trucks to unknown destinations, arbitrarily arrested bystanders; those countless disappearances reveal the relentless killing machine secretly set up by Damascus.
- Syria: the horror of Homs, a city at war
https://youtu.be/SyQIv5wyYGEChannel 4 report on the situation in Homs, filmed February 2012.
- Homs: Journey into Hell
https://youtu.be/H_XdxvEBszEBBC Panorama documentary about the Assad regime’s assault on Homs in February/March 2012.
- Agony in Aleppo: a city abandoned by the world?
https://youtu.be/wbKIiR5pRvkChannel 4 documentary about the situation in Aleppo in March 2013.
- Iran’s Secret Army
https://youtu.be/ZI_88ChjQtUBBC Persia documentary about Iran’s military intervention in Syria.
- The Shebabs of Yarmouk
https://youtu.be/Mqrt1gDILzkFilm about the lives of young Palestinian activists in Yarmouk, and their role and participation in the revolt.
- Children on the Frontline
http://www.channel4.com/programmes/children-on-the-frontline/on-demandChannel 4 documentary on the impact of the war on Syria’s children
- Aleppo: Notes from the Dark
Part one: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x23vqpg_aleppo-notes-from-the-dark-part-one_news
Part two: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x23vqtm_aleppo-notes-from-the-dark-part-two_newsFilm about life in the liberated part of Aleppo, published mid-2014.Interview with the director: https://news.vice.com/article/filming-the-redefinition-of-evil-in-syria
- Ecos del desgarro: la historia de una revolución imposible.
Echoes of tears: the story of an impossible revolution.
English description: http://antidotezine.com/2015/06/21/ecos-del-desgarro/An important documentary by a Spanish libertarian film collective Camara Negra. which looks at the Syrian revolution and counter revolution, giving voices to the grassroot activists who continue to struggle for freedom from tyranny and opression.
In spanish with English subtitles.
- Not Anymore: A Story of Revolution
http://www.syrianrevolutionfilm.com/Documentary short film that features the story of the Syrian struggle for freedom as experienced by a 32 year old rebel fighter, Mowya, and a 24 year old female journalist, Nour, in Aleppo, Syria.
- Our Terrible Country
http://bidayyat.org/films_article.php?id=146#.VmYW73bhAjIDocumentary following Yassin al-Haj Saleh and photographer Ziad Homsi as they travel from Damascus to Raqqa, and are forced into exile in Turkey by Da’esh.
- Red Lines
https://youtu.be/Jr4BV2c1bDYA documentary about Syrian activists trying to secure US government support for the struggle against the Assad regime. Demonstrates their attempts to organise grassroots democracy in parts of Syria, alongside lobbying US
- Return to Homs
https://youtu.be/RhBPewcWZ1IFilm about revolutionary activist and guerilla fight Abdul Basset Saroot, and his comrades struggle against the regime in Homs.
- Silvered Water, Syria self-portrait
https://vimeo.com/125723927A film made from amateur footage shot by Syrians during the course of the revolution. Made by Kurdish and Arab filmmakers from Aleppo.