In January 2011 President Bashar al-Assad told the Wall Street Journal that Syria was 'stable' and immune from revolt. In the months that followed, and as regimes fell in Egypt and Tunisia, thousands of Syrians took to the streets calling for freedom, with many dying at the hands of the regime. Stephen Starr delves deep into the lives of Syrians whose destiny has been shaped by the state for almost fifty years. In conversations with people from all strata of Syrian society, Starr draws together and makes sense of perspectives illustrating why Syria, with its numerous sects and religions, was so prone to violence and civil strife. Through his unique access to a country largely cut off from the international media during the unrest, Starr delivers compelling first hand testimony from both those who suffered and benefited most at the hands of the regime. Revolt in Syria details why many Syrians wanted Assad's government to stay as the threat of civil war loomed large, the long-standing gap between the state apparatus and its people and why the country's youth stood up decisively for freedom.Starr also sets out the positions adhered to by the country's minorities and explains why many Syrians believe that enforced regime change might precipitate a region-wide conflict. This revised and updated edition contains a chapter bringing it up to the end of 2013, and examines the experiences of those who have fled the fighting to Turkey and elsewhere.
STEPHEN STARR is a freelance Irish journalist who has been reporting from Damascus since 2007. He covered the Syrian uprising for some of the world's leading newspapers and his work has been published in The Washington Post, Financial Times, The Times and Sunday Times, The Los Angeles Times and The Irish Times. He is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Near East Quarterly.