Dignity and human rights

There is a general impression that the Syrian crisis is an “Uprising of Dignity”, for the starting point of the revolution in city of Dara’a had symbols that show the correlation between tyranny, dignity and human rights. In spite of the complications of the Syrian crisis, which showed quite early, the majority of details during the past two years presented the question of “Dignity” as a key issue. Thus, Syrians who suffered from one type of tyranny, primarily political, got to know other types during the crisis, such as humiliation due to the intensified conflict, humiliation due to the economic deterioration and another humiliation later, with the armed groups practicing kidnapping, torture, violence and killing, which was based in some cases on religious identity, in addition to threats and insults to those who didn’t support the rebels/ or “the revolution”. Moreover, due to forced migration and displacement that both fighting parties were responsible for, not to mention the continuation of violating human rights by political authorities.

Some may view the Syrian crisis as a “Revolution of Dignity” due to practices that Syrian citizens were subject to for decades. These would see that such violations played a large role in the development of events. However, the Syrian citizen’s dignity and human rights require a new position, now, that goes at the heart of building the citizen for the post crisis phases.

Practically speaking, some opinions among the Syrian opposition are of the view that the explanation of what took place in Syria lies in a accumulative mechanism that reached a peak in the Dara’a incident, which historically marks the start of the Syrian uprising, perhaps in a simple way. What is most significant in the Dar’a incident, even if its details are yet to become clear, is that Syrians of various acceptance levels towards the regime, were and still are ready to easily believe the humiliating tale of the students’ parents.  Why? Because many of us could easily recall similar insults that we suffered from by government officials who actually represent the regime.

A narrative emerged for this approach through analyses in the press talking about a “Rural Uprising”, which was supported, on the other hand, by an economic analysis. The humiliation was not solely confined to one incident but rather to economic marginalization and impoverishment, which created an explosive reality.

Dignity had to appear as integral part of the Syrian event because what happened in Syrian surroundings woke up the society to many possibilities, and perhaps to the need to look at human dignity from various angles. And despite the fact that the developments of the Syrian issue brought further violations of human rights, this issue became a key component of a socio-political package that is in need in Syria and that is linked to strict laws that are applicable to all.

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