Warning * Graphic Photos *
On January 20th, twitter went “ringing off the hook” with people talking about 55,000 photos that were smuggled out of Syria by a Military Police Officer who worked for Assad’s prisons where Syrian dissidents were held. This individual, using the code name “Caesar,” was a photographer for the regime. According to CNN, he said he photographed up to 50 dead detainees per day once the war broke out.
An internationally renowned war crimes research and prosecution team was put together by Carter-Ruck and Co. Solicitors of London, to review and comment on the photos. According to CNN’s report, “Caesar” was reimbursed by Qatar for the photos.
The inquiry team completed an extensive review of the photos provided and reported that they were satisfied that upon review of the material provided “there is clear evidence, capable of being believed by a tribunal of fact in a court of law, of systematic torture and killing of detained persons by the agents of the Syrian government.”
The finding by the inquiry team further stated, “Such evidence would support findings of crimes against humanity [war crimes] against the current Syrian regime.”
Syrians have been screaming since the beginning of the Revolution that Assad has been torturing detainees. Hundreds, maybe thousands of videos and photos have been released by Syrian activists throughout the Revolution showing varying examples of the Assad regime torturing prisoners, women, even children. However, the impact of one picture on its own has not had the impact like 55,000 photos showing the unimaginable degradation of human beings all at once.
It should be said that not one human being should ever have to suffer torture, especially the torture of the Human Monster [Assad].
Assad has not limited the arrests and torture to men. He has often arrested women and children, sometimes very young children in the hopes that he can use them to leverage a parent to turn themselves in.
Think for a minute about how the revolution got started. In the city of Daraa, some boys led by Tarek Algorhani painted graffiti on a wall and grain silo “As-Shaab / Yoreed / Eskaat el nizam!” “The people want to topple the regime!” According to CBS news, on March 6, 2011 “the slogan of the revolutions in Cairo and Tunis … came flying from their paint cans.” The regime secret police came to arrest 15 boys between the ages of 10 and 15 and detained them under the control of Gen. Atef Najeeb, a cousin of President Bashar al-Assad. These children were “beaten and bloodied, burned and had their fingernails pulled out by grown men working for the regime.”
When asked what happens if the security forces catch you tagging (or painting graffiti) walls? Tarek Algorhani said, “The best possible scenario is that they kill you on the spot. If they detain you, you’ll go to political prison where you’re tortured and will eventually die a slower, more painful death. You’ll die either way, but dying immediately while you’re tagging something is definitely preferable to losing your mind while getting tortured.”
In another incident in 2013, a child was detained at a Syrian Army checkpoint. He was returned to his family dead. The child was 15 years old, beaten and bloodied.
In an exclusive video interview for Al-Arabiya Arabic, a member of ISIS divulged some expected but disturbing information about the relationship between the Assad regime and Daash (aka al-Qaeda in English). This ISIS man who was sharing information, stated:
“Daash dealt with the Syrians in their controlled areas very harsh.” “Daash [he] does not know the reason for their fight with the FSA in Syria, but it is in compliance with the orders of the organization.” “The Daash organization ordered elements of the FSA and any other dissidents [activists] to be turned over to the regime.” He detailed the process and bombing the train station in Raqqa He spoke of a Daash objective to kidnap and arrest leaders of the FSA He clearly defined the funding source of the Daash as the Syrain Regime.
Based on the evidence provided in the report above, it is fair to say that any FSA or other dissidents turned over to the regime at this point of the Syrian war, are in grave danger of losing their life. This has been recently come to light in the case of Dr. Khan Abbas who was held by the Syrian regime for over a year and promised a release date. However, just four days before this British physician was to be sent home he suddenly died, purportedly by suicide. The general belief though is he was murdered before his release date so his family and the British government could not see or hear about the horrific torture he was subjected to.
The Assad regime must be held accountable for their Crimes Against Humanity. It obvious based on the collection of photos, videos and eye witness testimony that Bashar al-Assad is unfit to lead a country.