Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Syria's cultural revolution

In their peaceful uprising young people have found art, comedy and music to be weapons Assad fears

Salwa Ismail
guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 21 June 2011

"....For the young activists, some of whom I interviewed recently in Damascus, the uprising has been about reclaiming the country from the ruling clique; transcending ethnic and sectarian divisions that the regime has manipulated to maintain its power; and forging a national identity tied to rights and obligations of citizenship. The movement includes many who, at a very young age, took part in the civil forums of the Damascus spring of 2000, or have political activists or prisoners of conscience in their families. It began with small acts of solidarity with Egypt and Tunisia, in particular candlelight vigils in which a few dared to gather in public places despite the menacing presence of security personnel.

This movement has spread geographically and gained in numbers. Throughout the country, small acts of resistance – evening protests, sit-ins in public squares and women-only home sit-ins – build up every week to the outpouring of anti-regime sentiment after Friday prayers. Participants and leaders come from all sects and include men and women. They maintain regular communication, exchange experiences of local organising and hold virtual debriefing sessions to assess their methods and approach.

In addition to organising and co-ordinating protests, young people have expressed resistance to the regime through an extensive body of artistic work and an expanding counter-culture. In posters, slogans, songs, animation and comedy, they have sought to provide an alternative to the regime's monopoly of the media and its aggressive occupation of the public space.....

Indeed, a new map of Syria drawn up to mark the protests on Fridays shows the remaking of the geography and the politics of the country. In this sense, the uprising could be viewed as the second coming of the Syrian nation."

أغنية المندسين - غناء وأداء فرقة المندسين السوريين

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