Seth J. Frantzman – May 20, 2018
Amid scenes labeled “apocalyptic” and a “crime against humanity,” the Syrian regime continued its offensive on Sunday to retake the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk, a neighborhood in south Damascus.
Most of the area is held by Islamic State and tens of thousands of Palestinian residents fled years ago, but thousands remain under a brutal siege.
The scenes from Yarmouk on Sunday looked like Stalingrad in 1942 or Berlin in 1945, during the Second World War: bombed-out buildings as far as the eye can see; roads turned to rubble; alleyways turned into canyons of destruction, gutted, gray and slumping from air strikes. There doesn’t appear to be anything left of many city blocks that were once a thriving community, the home of more than 200,000 people in 2011 when the Syrian civil war broke out. Now only a few thousand remain. Those who do are reported to be starving under the regime’s siege.