A Conversation with Yasser Munif: Inside the Syrian Revolution and What the Left Must Do
Dr. Yasser Munif, professor at Emerson College, has recently visited Syria, witnessed the revolution there, and has spoken and written about it (including an interview with scholar Nigel Gibson at Jadaliyya.) He talks about what he saw, the troubles facing revolutionaries in Syria, the very oppositional distinction between revolutionaries and jihadists, and more. And he talked about the Left’s perception of what’s going on, and how so many are getting it wrong on Syria.
Listen to the interview on the following link:
A passage from the interview:
“Yasser Munif: This summer I actually spent two months in Syria, in northern Syria, the liberated area, and it was a very humbling experience. I learned a lot and I saw a popular revolution, an ongoing popular revolution. People are rebuilding institutions, they are managing their cities after the fall of the state and the regime, and it is a very challenging task to do because there are no resources, there is no funding, and there are permanent attacks by the regime. Those areas I’m talking about in the north are liberated: there are no clashes on the ground. But there are constant airstrikes and missiles are launched on these cities.
So people are coming up with creative solutions: they are creating political institutions. There are local councils in each one of those cities and they meet on a weekly basis. They discuss everything in the city and they try to solve their problems.
And so there are millions of people who hear the media in the West and elsewhere talking about civil war and so on, and most of these people reject those labels. They believe there is a popular revolution in Syria. It’s true that it’s at a critical period and there are challenging tasks ahead of them, and there are jihadists who are trying to undermine their work, and obviously the regime… “