The war in Syria and immigration have become hot-button issues in the U.S., but many Americans still don’t know about the devastation that’s rocking Syria as we speak.
The Syrian War was set into motion after the Arab Spring movement spread throughout many Arab League nations in 2011. Following protests associated with the movement, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad and his government publicly repressed protests challenging the man’s presidency. As violence and opposition increased, more and more opposition groups joined the fight.
For many Americans, the first real indication of this sorrow came in the form of a heartbreaking photo of little Omran Daqneesh, the bloodied Syrian boy who was pictured in an ambulance following an airstrike in Aleppo. Aleppo has quickly become the epicenter of the Syrian War, and while many adult victims are in peril, it is particularly saddening to see how children have fallen into the conflict’s crosshairs.
Nearly 6,500 Syrian schools have been closed or destroyed since 2011, putting more and more children on the streets. This makes them vulnerable.
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Since the beginning of the war, over 18,000 civilians have been killed in Aleppo, and of that number, almost 4,500 of those victims were children under 18.
“They’re trapped, and they have no way of escaping. That’s one reason we’re seeing such big numbers of child casualties,” said Save the Children spokesperson Alun McDonald.
Of the roughly 250,000 people still trapped in Aleppo, almost 100,000 of them are kids.
Trapped children run the risk of becoming weak and malnourished as the war wages on and depletes resources.
In September 2016, airstrikes and bombings in Aleppo increased, leaving many innocent little ones clinging to their lives amidst the rubble.
The medical field is drastically failing children and other civilians in the war-torn city.
A lack of medical supplies has kept victims from healing. Instead, these children are abandoned on hospital floors and left to die.
One out of every three hospitals in Aleppo is currently open for business, and the two major hospitals are hit with over 600 serious cases each day in government-held portions of the Syrian city.
There are an estimated 35 doctors left in the area, averaging one doctor for every 7,000 civilians. It’s an impossible ratio.
While some families have fled, others remain because global tensions have convinced them that life as a refugee would be even worse than staying. That’s how violent rhetoric surrounding the migrant crisis has become.
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It’s easy to politicize this issue. It’s easy to fear what you don’t understand. What we all need to do, however, is find compassion in our hearts for the millions of children worldwide who die at the hands of corruption and persecution.
(via CNN and The New York Times)
To find out how you can help aid those impacted by the Syrian Civil War, you can find a full list of charities and organizations here.