Today marks the beginning of the Islamic month of Ramadan, and Ramadan is intended to teach Muslims the virtues of humility and patience. However this practice will be significantly tested by the current waves of protests throughout Syria. In fact, the onset of the holy month has created even more tension throughout the country, which has experienced divides and protest for several months. Sparked by the domino effect of uprisings throughout the Middle East, Syria’s situation appears to be either an outburst of sectarian strife or an undercurrent of pressure for freedom. Rating 127/178 on the BBC’s ‘corruption ranking,’ corruption within the Syrian regime, led by the Al-Assad family, is undeniably a great factor.
People are anxious for the overthrow of government and revolutionaries are restless, urging their compatriots to follow on and replicate the degrees of success seen in the Middle East this year. Syria’s experience of a massacre in Hama at the hands of President Assad’s father in 1982, in which tens of thousands were killed, remains a sore memory. It is arguably on the verge of repetition as the government attempts to suppress the emerging tension in its second day of siege on Hama, in which activists say that 130 people have been killed. The considerable level of government violence and intervention, which has been condemned by numerous countries and labelled by President Obama as ‘appalling,’ demonstrates the gridlock of the two opposing parties. Today witnessed the first day of Ramadan and the second day of brutality in Hama, as well as the entrance into the sixth month of protest. Although the future of the Syrian uprisings remains uncertain, it is evident that the stubbornness of both sides in the battle means that government violence and oppression will continue for another day in Hama, and more.