Ground Zero: Syria

Ground Zero: Syria

2012, Military and War  -   53 Comments
Ratings: 7.32/10 from 50 users.

Ground Zero: Syria is a compiled photojournalist and videographer Robert King's footage into a series of raw, largely unedited vignettes that present a snapshot of the ancient city as it crumbles and burns while its citizens are killed indiscriminately.

Amid a fierce battle between Assad's security forces and Free Syrian Army insurgents, fire swept through the old Souk of Aleppo, a historic covered market and World Heritage site.

Rebel fighters and activists have reported that the blaze was sparked by the use of incendiary mortar rounds by Assad's forces. The atrocities and war crimes currently ripping Syria apart are evident inside a field hospital in Aleppo, the country's largest city. Inside the hospital exhausted doctors indiscriminately treat civilians, members of the Free Syrian Army, and captured Syrian Army troops alike.

Every day the men, women, and children, must risk their lives to stand in line and hope that they can buy a kilo of bread to survive another day. Many of the bread factories have been destroyed amid fighting between the Free Syrian Army and Assad's troops. The few that remain are staffed by brave souls who risk their lives every day to ensure the local population has basic sustenance.

During his time in Syria throughout much of 2012, videographer Robert KIng followed Aleppo's Al-Tawhid Brigade as he dodged bullets and rocket fire to learn more about the largest brigade of the Free Syrian Army.

Warning: Contains scenes which some viewers may find disturbing.

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53 Comments / User Reviews

  1. Eric Lawson

    I have tried i still do not understand this war or revolution . FAS seems to be legitimate. But one never knows. Good Documentary the snipers bothered me when they say it is not them pulling the trigger. Rather it is Allah who pulls the trigger. With that kind of mind set. I loose all respect for this FSA sniper groups. This is certainly not a well organized force . I do feel sorry for the children and women in this conflict. It makes one happy to live in a peaceful and free country !!Assad should be dealt with by the international community !! I think him a heartless criminal. The bully in the school yard !!

  2. tom horn

    FSA is a fraud, they tell how noble their cause is but they lie ,cheat steal,kill,rape, extort money from kidnapping people. Assad is not the problem the islamist rebels are. Look how they distroy everything then blame it all on Assad, They show childern suffer i hope you dont fall for that lie again but you will. If america had armed thugs fighting would you join them to flight for( freedom)? The rebels kill anyone who is not supporting sunni Islam as Christians, Alawite,shia people. They burn Christian Churches force people from their homes. Almost everything they tell you in this video is untrue. Look at how they eat hearts&livers out of Assads men. Did you see that video?God help you to wake up to overthrow Assad is not the answer. Do we need another violent Islamic state in the world? Sure lets all became radicals for Islam ok if it will help the childern right? Yes we have freedom in Libya,Egypt ,Iraq now thanks freedom fighters -England,france U.S.A-keep up the good work-kill Christians,Jews,anyone who is a (unbeliever) Its for democracy! The Mob rules! (Most of the rebel fighters are not even Syrians) If Assad was so evil he would have been overthrown long ago. So how would i know anthing about Syria ? I was there to visit family there the summer of 2012.Most people support Assad!

    1. jason bourne

      Can you or anyone you know that lives in Syria speak of change.????

  3. rufusclyde

    The period wherein the United States has been the most powerful actor in the world is coming to an end. The monopoly capitalist system has resulted in the reduction in the standard of living for most Americans, and the US war machine cannot be supported much longer in this system. In an attempt to maintain the status quo, the US state apparatus is being used to corner China and Russia, and that is why a war has been started in Syria. There is no alternative explanation.

  4. Name irrelevant

    Personally... I am surprised at how many people are still shocked at any of this stuff.
    Huge prediction... Ready?
    All this sh????t will continue... till mans demise.
    Think I'm right?
    Love u all... Mwah!

  5. korydk

    If you ever wondered what a hero looks like... They look like those Syrian doctors. Godspeed honorable men, you give hope for the human race.

  6. N

    All because of the ignorance of ALL religion

  7. N

    This should be seen by all. To hell with the human race !

  8. Tanzanos Eleytheros

    War is the mark of a failed society! Asaad is a war criminal! The only people who are happy with war are the weapons manufacturers!

  9. Skajadulf

    If there was oil in Syria Uk & Us would of went in Syria the first week this started.

  10. Master Yoda


  11. Lawrence Kouju

    I agree with War Dog 666 - U that war is totally a waste of human lives ... innocent and those involved in the fighting. The present age is supposed to be a civilised age if I may say so but look what is happening all over the world, war ... killing here and there, since the beginning of humanity. I bet humans will continue to kill one another for a long, long time. Come to think of it nature has a way of preventing over population of the earth ... otherwise there would be mass extinction of human beings.

  12. War Dog 666 - U

    I have viewed many videos containing acts of violence, this particular video is the worse I've ever seen. . War in our modern age has to stop, enough is enough. Those poor innocent children, it's heartbreaking.

    1. RobGR

      You think this happened only this war?????? Children and the innocent are the first to die in any and every war. What planet are you from that you don't know this.

      This is the stuff they never show, this is why there was a ban showing US coffins returning home. This is why guys come back from Afghanistan and Iraq and take their lives, they can't live with what they have seen... in every war.

  13. JRushnik

    You think the Syrian people want another Taliban running their country? That's all that's going to happen once Assad, a secular and reluctant leader, is gone.

  14. JRushnik

    This is not as simple as it seems. I'm not saying Assad is good, but he's definitely no worse than than the leaders of most other countries. The real problem is that he isn't doing what the US wants him to do. Have a look at where the "rebels" are getting their weapons from, funny how they always seem to end up with NATO equipment. Funny also how the "freedom fighters" mainly consist of al-Qaeda and and the US is now arming them again, just like they did in the 70s and 80s in Afghanistan. All we are doing is creating a new bin Laden because Assad doesn't bend to the will of the US.

  15. Koke Pele

    Some of you would believe anything they throw at you in Audiovisual format...your MEDIA lie to you day in day out... how come western media are ONLY bringing us images of the so called "rebels" and their spokesmen???? What the **** does Al-Assad's have to say about this?, there are dissidents in every's funny how little importance we give to the power of semantics... "terrorist"..."regime"... I'm a Spanish ex-pat... just WHAT THE **** do you think there is in Spain if not a dictatorial REGIME??? Let someone flood the streets of Spain with weapons and we'll give the world a show to remember...just like in '36. THINK for yourselves people...

  16. Travis Dominguez

    Is there somewhere where i can actually watch this documentary?

    1. Achems_Razor

      try, click on lower right where it says youtube.

  17. Susan Ernst the children!

  18. Matt Kukowski

    This is the work of Satanic forces. Only time will tell, VISE should employ some low altitude camera/drone footage.

  19. nebra

    how stupid are we still....

  20. AllanA

    Thank you for a doc that doesn't really need any introduction. It's awful how this regime targets the hospitals and other civilian infrastructure. I hope the people end this a--hole's fight once and for all. I wish I was able to travel this country before. I hope I can some day.

    Thanks again VICE for yet another good doc. This really needs to be on TV instead of constant reports on holiday traffic.

  21. hernandayoleary

    Its a joke really, Syria has democracy and votes, they are secular and civilized and we hate them and are arming al qaeda? Yet we are friends with the dictatorship in Saudia Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, Jordan, Kuwait and all the other dictatorships were there isnt even a sham vote and they hate and bomb America. I am sorry, these policies are backwards, no one murders more people than the dictatorships in Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

    1. Pete Leclair

      A joke? This is no joke!

    2. sakib bari

      Your comment is a jokE..'Syria has democracy and votes"

      Syria is not a democratic country illiterate friend

    3. Jack1952

      I have discussed this with him once before. He seems to think that having one person on the ballot constitutes a democracy. Actually, it isn't an election. It is a poll which asks if the "voter" approves of the current administration. I guess he would be quite comfortable if the next American "election" was a ballot which questions if they approve Obama. If they approve he gets to stay President for another four years. Sounds quite democratic to me.

      He also believes that Canada is a dictatorship and our Prime Minister is appointed by that dictator the Queen of England. Our elections are meaningless even though there are a multitude of candidates on the ballot. I'm not sure what he thinks our elections are for or even if we have them.

    4. ebn el sham

      No it doesn't you i*iot, Bashar gained power through his father and maintains power through faulty elections. Your're an ignorant m*ron who thinks he knows hat he's talking about with 0 connections to syria, hell you probably don't even understand arabic.

  22. Carl Hendershot

    Women and children. WTF. War if not controlled is terrorism period.

  23. John

    The Arab League, United States, European Union, Arab Gulf States and other countries have condemned the use of violence against the protesters.

    What a F##ing world we are living in...I'm speechless.

  24. xxDarkSidexx

    middle east really need to sort there ****, far east just get on with it, west get along, but the middle east just keep blowing the shi* out of each other, thats all you hear, not gonna watch this because of the poor little dudes, but seriously, stop fighting over gods that dont exsist!

  25. Paul MacLeod

    What's so Civil about War anyway!?

  26. Mihai Dorcu

    Hugo...For their sake, let's end here, because you are right, I am right...nobody seems to gain from this discussion.
    Let's hope it will end soon.

    1. Hugo Salazar Sotelo

      Agree . Let´s.

      but ill take a secular Syria over a Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, or UAE any day of the week.

  27. Mihai Dorcu

    Hugo...I don't negate that in the shadows aren't some serious players, with something to gain from this, but when you say ''what does he have to gain by doing that?'' it means you don't know some Syrian history. His father killed 60000 men in 3 days, in the revolution that took place in '82, in Hama . Why? To prove a point... And from that massacre, nobody spoke against the regime, until 2011.

    When it's about power, everything is justifiable for the oppressors.
    I don't watch mainstream media.

  28. Mihai Dorcu

    @zatara ...I could send those videos, and they would reply that it doesn't mean that all Al-Assad army behaves like this.
    If somebody really wants to know the reality from there, it can be found on the internet, you just have to look harder.

    I don't know if I'm the right person to advocate for them, I just reacted impulsively when seeing that this subject is so easily discussed, without the proper knowledge of the facts.

    I don't know what Vice Media is selling, but here they portrayed some of the reality, that could be shown.
    Peace to everyone.

  29. Mihai Dorcu

    No problem, if you can stand seeing a boy having his fingers cut with an razor blade,inch by inch, a man that is stabbed in his face, and having his ear cut off...then OK, but I don't think this is the point.
    Today the army of Al-Assad has bombed a baker's shop, killing 300 people...maybe that it will convince you.

    1. Hugo Salazar Sotelo

      says who? CNN? why would Assad bomb a BAKERY? now think hard ... and ask yourself what does he have to gain by doing that? if anything this would justify the NATO terrorist organization to increase their pressure against the Syrian Arab Army. this is a game of chess and the Wahhabis and the "FSA" are but mere PAWNS ready to be sacrificed to serve the NATO´s goals.

      if you dont believe me just look at Libya.

    2. Sweetnflow

      It's called total war. Kill doctors, bomb bakeries and hospitals and your enemy has no choice but to spend its resources on food, medical supplies, logistics (roads and buildings are either cut off or destroyed), housing for displaced people and a host of other things rather than on weapons, ammunition, fuel, body armor and other war fighting related necessities. Its attrition. Assad's remaining fighters and supporters are fiercely loyal and he is attempting to force his opponents into some sort of deal favorable to himself and his supporters by causing as much mayhem as possible to see if they will relent and sue for peace.

      I agree that you shouldn't believe everything you see in the media and the best way to moderately negate selection bias by reading on the same subjects from a variety of both foreign and domestic sources and, agreed again, formulate your own opinion.
      One should use more than this video to make an (albeit moderately) informed opinion on the subject. That being said, this video does accurately depict the tenacity of fighting, the catastrophic destruction and the human suffering this conflict continues to cause. This alone should compel all of us to, regardless of opinion, not let this issue remain silent in our respective national conversations.

  30. Mihai Dorcu

    First of all, Mr. Nutzack, please, for the sake of all the people that fight for their rights in Syria. apologize for your comment.
    My best friend is Syrian, and I receive all the "fresh" news directly from the front, and if you would like, I could send you dozens of videos showing Bashar's army slauthering children, women just for fun.

    After this revolution will end, they will have their hands full trying to build a new nation, but at least they will do it in a free manner, because this is all that is about, freedom.

    Syria is one of the few countries, that wasn't concerned with 21 December, because for them, it is daily like the end of the world.

    If we could just eliminate greed and lust for power, then everything else would be much more easier.
    Peace to everyone.

    Mihai Dorcu

    1. oQ

      I was watching a doc last night called "How To Start A Revolution" with Gene Sharp....quite extraordinary!

  31. eugene eugene

    dirty american propagandist bull****.. majority of FSA are foreign fighters according to founder of Medcine San Frontier after doing a six month stint at a Syrian field hospital... also credible stories know emerging, that credibly sugget that the first to fire on civilians, were Saudi agents(ie. working for the USA)

  32. Harry Nutzack

    what a blatant propaganda piece. is vice now a member of the fundraising arm of the FSA?

    1. Imightberiding

      Perhaps you can educate me and countless others who watch this doc. I mean no disrespect & honestly do not for a moment understand what this conflict is all about. We in the west all watch the news programs & carnage that is occurring in Syria. I for one admit that I don't have a clue what it is all about.

      All I can say from watching this horrific footage is that it seems absurd & senseless when I watch a doctor trying to save children from horrific injuries as the result of war & say that if he dies while trying to save these lives he is happy because he is a doctor & thus meant to save lives.

      How many high priced doctors living in grand houses from the profits of unnecessary plastic surgery procedures for the sake of shallow vanity are thriving in the west as this goes on every day? How much money is being spent on useless unappreciated gifts for christmas in the west? I personally don't get it, nor do I understand what this is all for.

      I don't see the connection of VICE being a part of the FSA, nor do I see this being a blatant propaganda piece.

      I just see this all as being entirely disturbing. Are you from there? Have you been there? Have you been there recently while all this is happening? If not, you are getting the same info as the rest of us in the west. Why do you know something I don't? Perhaps you are somehow in the loop or much more intuitive than the rest of us.

      I am not picking a fight or argument. I honestly want to know what this is about that you seem to know & I have been missing.

      In the meantime, merry christmas, happy holidays & all the best for you & yours in the new year.

    2. iStateOfMind3 iii

      Google 'What is Vice Media's Shane Smith really selling? It's hard to say, but everyone's buying' - Interesting read.

    3. xxDarkSidexx

      well said mate, boom!

    4. oQ

      And while you explain yourself, please (i don't mean to be rude) can you write it in paragraphs as it is very hard for a Frenchy to read you regular blocks.
      I have been to Syria travelling alone, spent more than a month but that was a while a ago, 2000.
      Lovely country with very nice people as i remember it.

    5. Spencer Ross Frame

      I question the intention behind the film, but this is incredibly wrong.