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by Janice Kortkamp

Well, actually Christmas is BIG in Syria, a roughly 85-90% Muslim country, Muslims of many sects/groups that hold often widely varying traditions: Sunnis, Alawites, Shiites, Druze, Ismaili, etc. Syria was at least 10% Christian before the war now almost half are gone. There are also many atheists, pagans, deists, agnostics, etc.

Yet Christmas is one of the most popular holidays there as people from all those different beliefs enjoy the celebrations together, the parties, the church services, special concerts and events.

Can’t you just tell these poor, oppressed people are fearful that any moment their ‘brutal dictator’ will launch a chemical weapons attack on them? Hopefully you can detect my irony.

Every person in these photos has suffered. They’ve all lost loved ones, all were many times just hoping to survive the days. Loss of hopes and dreams for their futures too. Loss of their homes, businesses, schools. Loss of comfort and prosperity as they experienced power outages lasting days-weeks-months-years sometimes with only an hour of power each day or less; also shortage of food and medicines. These everyday necessities and more they had in plenty before the US/UK/France – working primarily on behalf of Israeli, Saudi Arabian, and Qatari interests (greedy, violent, malignant, expansionist interests) and the interests of oil/gas companies and weapons makers – decided to try to rip their country apart.

It’s all been lies folks.

The hearts of many here in the US are so hardened by fake news and propaganda that as I’ve shared images like these they protest – “are they dancing and singing over the graves of those killed?” I wonder if those evil-hearted ones would have said the same as Paris was celebrating its liberation in 1944.

The truth is that Syrians have chosen life and joy and happiness however and whenever they could.Now they are celebrating life and renewed hope. And so many of us around the world have fallen in love with their spirit and heart.

So Merry Christmas Syria! And may every new year from now on be better than the last. Our tears have come many times as we’ve seen you mourn and suffer. Our cheers have come many times as we’ve seen your victories.

How I wish, as so many of us Syria Lovers do, I could be there to toast and dance and sing with you all! ❤️

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