ON THE TURKISH-SYRIAN BORDER – Syrian refugees, who have gone to great lengths
to escape President Bashar Assad’s bombing campaign, attribute a large part of
the violence in their country to the regime’s allies.
In interviews at
refugee camps on the Turkish-Syrian border over the past week, the displaced
persons accused the Lebanese militia Hezbollah, the Islamic Republic of Iran and
Russia of enabling Assad’s regime to persevere and to inflict violence on
“We were deceived by these countries and Hezbollah,”
said a male refugee.
The identities of the refugees cannot be disclosed
because of fears of retaliation against family members remaining inside
He termed Hezbollah, which in Arabic means “the Party of God,” as
the “Party of Satan.”
When asked by The Jerusalem Post who benefits from
the Syrian war, a young male refugee said Russia, Iran and Hezbollah. He said
the Russians have helped Assad “because they sell weapons” to his
The first male refugee said the regime was providing Russian
weapons to the notorious Shabiha (“Ghost”) militia.
The Shabiha force
plays a big role in the campaign to crush opposition among the Syrian
population. Syrians say the militia is a brutal force of street gangsters who
have terrorized them since – and prior to – the outbreak of peaceful protests
against Assad’s rule.
Shabiha members “get weapons and power” and go to
regime-controlled areas, the refugee told the Post.
When the Shabiha
“know someone is Sunni, they capture him. Just two days ago they captured
Sunnis,” he continued.
A third male refugee said, “Iran, Iraq, Russia,
China and Hezbollah support the regime for their own benefit.”
down how the countries were advancing their interests in Syria.
to his analysis, Iran and Iraq are “protecting [Shi’ite] holy places in
Russia, he said, was “selling weapons to the regime.” China
exported goods to Syria, he added.
“They are not just killing people,
[they] insult the Koran, destroy mosques and torture religious people,” said the
A fourth male refugee said that Assad “used Hezbollah in
Syria to turn it into a sectarian” war.Benjamin Weinthal reports on
European affairs and is a fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
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