Politicians in denial as death toll in Aleppo rises

By Marwa Benahmed-Ali

Wounded civilians arrive at a hospital in Aleppo during the Syrian civil war, October 2012. Photo courtesy of Voice of America News

Since the spark of civil war in 2011, Syria has experienced devastating casualties and the displacement of millions. More recently, both the Syrian and Russian army are constantly bombarding Aleppo, the largest city in Syria.

Russian and Syrian forces believe they are fighting ISIS and recapturing Aleppo. Reality tells a different story. Graphic videos and images of dying families on the web have caused a ripple of shock and heartbreak internationally.

The people of Aleppo are being torn apart by Russia’s constant air raids. Russia has been striking civilian neighborhoods with cluster bombs, incendiary bombs, chlorine bombs, bunker burst bombs, and other destructive warheads.

In their so-called efforts to “combat ISIS,” Russia has killed thousands of civilians and has destroyed 90 percent of east Aleppo. The Russians are deliberately attacking rescue workers and dropping bombs on them.

Nearly all of the hospitals in eastern Aleppo were destroyed and only a few doctors are left. Severely injured civilians who are seeking medical help have no choice but to suffer or die.

The situation in Aleppo has become so dire that doctors in neighboring cities are begging Russia and Assad to help civilians. Yet Russia, and the Syrian regime are not allowing domestic and international human aid workers to enter the city.

A representative from UNICEF has also called for a dire humanitarian and psychological intervention.

Worst of all, ISIS, who is the real villains, is continuing to pursue territorial expansion and the genocide of minorities.

The United Nations Security Council has demanded a ceasefire but Russia vetoed it. The UN Security Council is continuing to pressure Russia but efforts to provide relief in Aleppo are still on standby.

What is even more heartbreaking is the fact that American politicians are clueless about the situation.

When asked during an MSNBC Morning Joe interview about Aleppo, Libertarian presidential candidate, Gary Johnson did not even know what Aleppo is.

The nightmare isn’t over. GOP candidate Donald Trump stated during the second presidential debate that he is supporting Russia and the regime in fighting ISIS. If we vote for Trump Aleppo will most likely cease to exist.

Aleppo is burning and nothing is being done to save both civilians and the historical city of Aleppo. With ruthless and ignorant leaders, Aleppo will continue to burn until it is annihilated.

Contact Marwa Benahmed-Ali at communitarian@mail.dccc. edu

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