The Boy Who Started the Syrian War

2017 ,    »  -   5 Comments
Ratings: 5.21/10 from 29 users.

As the constant stream of media headlines makes clear, the ongoing turmoil in Syria is growing more troubling by the day. Even after more than a half a million civilians have perished under the bombardment of barrel bombs, random gunfire and chemical gas attacks, there appears to be little hope for a resolution.

But that doesn't deter the opposition to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's oppressive government. Produced by Al-Jazeera, The Boy Who Started the Syrian War stands on the frontlines of this battle, and recounts the story of one opposition member who set the tone for this raging conflict with a simple juvenile prank.

In 2011, a 14-year old boy named Mouawiya grabbed a can of spray paint, and plastered a message of defiance against the Assad regime on his school wall. At the time, the boy regarded the graffiti as nothing more than an act of youthful rebellion. The authorities saw it differently. "They hung us up like chickens," Mouawiya says of he and his accomplices following their capture. A period of prolonged torture ensued, and soon sparked the outrage of protestors who began to crowd the streets. Security forces opened fire on the gathering masses under orders from the government, and ushered in an era of civil war that continues to this day.

Graffiti may have inspired the uprising, but the writing was already on the wall for many of its participants. Following the Arab Spring if 2010, the country was primed for a revolt against Assad's dictatorship, and a full-hearted embrace of democratic principles. The film features interviews with several key players in this pursuit, including an average accountant who now serves as a leader of the resistance and an educator who teaches defense techniques to the nation's most vulnerable children. The filmmakers also catch up with Mouawiya, who is now a politically conscientious adult who fights alongside the Free Syrian Army.

Featuring harrowing images of structural devastation and unbearable human loss, The Boy Who Started the Syrian War provides invaluable insight into a conflict that continues to threaten the lives of millions, and plague the promise of democratic relations around the globe.

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5 Comments / User Reviews

  1. satan

    I find it amusing that in the description of the documentary it states that more than half a million people perished from 'bombardment of barrel bombs, random gunfire and chemical gas attacks' all of which alluding to the idea that it is the government, i,e. Assad, is doing the killing, however there is no mention of death related to head chopping, repeated rapes or just simple genocide of Syriacs, Christians and yazidis by the good friends of the White Helmets (filth of the earth), and considering that this documentary is made by Jazeera (Qatari based news organization which immediately makes it a terrorist Wahhabi backer) i can tell you i am skipping this one. I would rather watch something closer to being impartial. Good day to you.

  2. Mack Niccolo

    I thought this was a very interesting documentary with a unique perspective. As an American I would especially recommend it to other Americans, if for anything that it is quite thought provoking to see. What I find especially interesting are the parts referencing to "normal" life ensuing even during times of such chaos right on their everyday doorstep.

  3. Bret Tutor

    Holy crap Mack are you for real about that? Listen to satan in the first comment as he sums it up. We will look back on these wars one day with utter regret for this low time in humanity.

  4. GunnarInLA

    ...I am totally with satan and Bret on this one...for those truly interested, it is perfectly well understood how all this originated...and so, this was an easy one to decide not to watch...

  5. Glenn

    Bury your heads in the sand if you choose but the hard facts are people who cherish freedom are being hunted down and murdered including women and children for defending their rights for democracy and a fair system, their's no freedom when you have murderous dictators at the wheel ready to quash any freedom they yearn.

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