Eight Years into the Syrian Revolution: Understanding the Complex Dynamics

9 juin 2018 | معتمد Imperialism, Solidarity, Revolution, Syria

Syria_2013_29_Tariq al-Bab, Aleppo_Ali Mustafa

Photo credit: Ali Mustafa

Roundtable discussion with Yasser Munif, Ashley Smith, Oula Hajjar and Brian Aboud

    Wednesday June 20, 2018
    6 pm to 8:30 pm
    La Maisonnette des parents
    6651, boul. Saint-Laurent
    Tionni’tiotiah:ke, Kanien’kehá:ka territory
    H2S 3C5
    (Metro de Castelnau or bus 55)
    Facebook event

Eight years into the Syrian uprising, the grassroots movement, the local councils and the ongoing revolutionary struggle are misunderstood or denied outright by many (even on the left). The military strikes carried out in April by the US, the UK and France against Syrian state targets were cynical and opportunistic actions. They must rightly be condemned. Not, as some do, on strict anti-imperialist grounds, opposing only western intervention in Syria, or, from another standpoint, in blind, apologetic support of the dictatorial Syrian regime, and its allies, Russia and Iran. Such perspectives go hand in hand with a denial of the Syrian popular revolt where, in current debates, support for the brutal Asad regime is justified due to the presence of Al-Qaeda, ISIS and other reactionary groups. Rather, a position on Syria, and on political actions in the Syrian conflict, must start with a recognition of the people’s struggle and the violent repression to which it has been subject at the hands of regime forces (responsible for the overwhelming majority of the hundreds of thousands of civilian deaths). It must also listen to the voices from the Syrian uprising calling for dignity and freedom and respect and support the revolutionary agency and autonomy of the people of Syria.

The current conjuncture in Syria is complex and calls for an in-depth analysis and for building of a narrative that is cognizant of the complexity of the situation and the various revolutionary, counter-revolutionary and reactionary forces involved.

The roundtable discussion will address some key elements of the immediate dynamics, conditions and determinants of the current situation in Syria. The discussion will also highlight how solidarity with Syrian and Palestinian people is intertwined, and why and how solidarity with one should mean that for the other.


Yasser Munif (via Skype): Yasser Munif is a Syrian-American activist who was in Syria at the beginning of the revolution and is studying the Arab revolutions. He is writing a book about micropolitics and everyday resistance in Syria.

Ashley Smith: Ashley Smith is a member of the editorial board of the International Socialist Review (ISR). He has written extensively about the US imperialism, Syria and US politics for the ISR as well as Socialist Worker, ZNet, Jacobin, New Politics and other online and print publications. Most recently he authored an article in the ISR entitled, “Illiberal Hegemony: Trump’s Imperial Strategy.” He is currently working on a book for Haymarket Books on Socialism and Anti-Imperialism.

Oula Hajjar: Oula Hajjar, a community organizer and activist, has worked on several campaigns for social justice in the Middle East as a member of the Montreal-based solidarity group Tadamon!. Recently, she has worked directly supporting Syrian refugees in Berlin and Montreal. She is currently working at McGill university on a research project about the integration of Syrian refugees in Canada.

Brian Aboud: Brian Aboud works as an academic and as a researcher on immigration history in Montreal and is involved in solidarity activism in relation, especially, to the Syrian and Palestinian questions.

Accessibility Information:
* The venue is wheelchair-accessible, entrance via ramp in the back and an accessible washroom.
* Childcare will be provided.
* Whisper translation (English to French) will be available.

For any questions relating to accessibility, please don’t hesitate to contact us at info@tadamon.ca

For more information:
* Tadamon!

Photo: Tariq al-Bab in Aleppo, Syria. 20/4/2013. Credit: Ali Mustafa/SIPA Press

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