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Friday, Oct 22, 2021
Outlook.com

Syriana Unshrouded

How the West has interfered selectively in the name of democracy

Syriana Unshrouded
Illustration by Sorit
Syriana Unshrouded
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

With apologies to T.S. Eliot, let me twist his words around a bit and say, “Between the media and the reality falls the shadow.” Bouthaina Shabaan, the sharp political advisor to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, had her finger on the shadow when she told visiting Indian journalists in October, “Neither we nor the BBC knows what’s happening in Homs.” The candour belied the image of a secretive and blustering regime. After moving around Damascus, Aleppo and Latakia, we suspected that western diplomacy and the western media were tinkering with reality in depicting a complex Syrian situation.

But Homs was an eye-opener. We reached a spot barely 20 minutes after a three-hour (2-5 pm) gunfight. But it wasn’t security forces that opened indiscriminate fire on opposition demonstrators, as day after day, big media outlets had us believe about Homs. The dead, and the injured in a hospital we visited, were largely women and children. But they’d died from bullets fired by the opposition, not the...

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