Syria – from revolution, to chaos, to show and tell


By: Octavia Nasr


How difficult it must be for Syria and the Syrians at this juncture. It is hard not to feel depressed, desperate and unbelievably sorrowful at how the situation has escalated so quickly and dramatically.

How pitiful it is for a nation to become broken overnight, its people scattered, poor and hungry in tents waiting for donations, giveaways, or anyone who is willing to give attention to their plight.

Syrians are today at the mercy of the rich and famous — or not so rich and hoping to be famous —  and those searching for a “cause” to embrace or those looking for a photo opportunity with devastation in the backdrop.

Sadly, Syria’s refugee plight has become so redundant that even media organizations are tired of reporting on it. Evil, death and destruction have become so routine, reporters have run out of descriptions. Syria has become the alln too common story of a failed revolution and a relentless dictator.

Terrorists, victims, violence and utter misery and destitution are every day’s headlines. Celebrities now show up on the scene and become the story, overshadowing the real harrowing story of suffering and despair.

Syria fatigue

I’ll purposefully avoid mentioning names, but when high profile visits take place in refugee camps, the media drool for coverage. Meanwhile, humanitarian organizations never stop denouncing the violence and condemning the perpetrators.

Then, what happens? Absolutely nothing. The numbness sets in again. Depression takes hold again. The suffering of the Syrian people never stops. It continues and it becomes even more pronounced as celebrities move on to their next cause, next target, and next spot in the world.

With many other concerned individuals, we do not have a solution, nor do we have a way out to offer the parties. The “Syria fatigue” that the region and the world is experiencing is the reason why the country will fall in the hands of those most patient and with the least to lose. They are the ones who will remain until the end. They are the ones who will continue to fight even if no one is left standing.

In three years, Syria has turned from being the story of hope in true people’s power to a symbol of how to lose a revolution. As sad as this reality is, the harder story that the future generations will learn is even more dispiriting: That there are people who will lose everything to gain nothing at all is probably the saddest story of all.



Multi-award-winning journalist Octavia Nasr served as CNN’s senior editor of Middle Eastern affairs, and is regarded as one of the pioneers of the use of social media in traditional media. She moved to CNN in 1990, but was dismissed in 2010 after tweeting her sorrow at the death of Hezbollah’s Mohammed Fadlallah. Nasr now runs her own firm, Bridges Media Consulting, whose main aim is to help companies better leverage the use of social networks. This article was first published in al-Nahar.

Opinions do not necessarily reflect ARA News’ policy.


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