According to SyrianShuhada.com, one of the key initiatives dedicated to documenting and verifying the human cost of the Syrian revolution, 18,408 have been martyred as of July 1, 2012 since the uprising began in March 2011.
In the nation of ~23 million people, the number is staggering and upon deeper analysis it becomes quickly apparent that every corner of Syria has suffered from the Assad regime onslaught – across all 14 provinces, all walks of life, all sects.
Geographical Distribution of Martyrs:
- Homs province, the heart of the revolution, is hardest hit with 6,681 (36%) martyrs
- Idleb province has suffered heavily for their freedom with 3,095 (17%) martyrs
- Damascus (360) & ‘Reef Dimashq’ (1,976) provinces, combined, have lost 13% of the martyrs in Syria – so much for the myth that Damascenes haven’t risen up!
- Hama province, continues to bleed for Syria, is third on the list with 2,103 (11%) martyrs
- Daraa province – the sparkplug for the revolution has 1,802 (10%) martyrs
- Deir Ezzour province, which Assad forces haven’t been able to suppress, has 884 (5%) martyrs
- Aleppo (Halab) province, with revolutionary momentum building, is slipping away slowly from Assad and has 744 (4%) martyrs
- Latakia 388, Qunaitra 118, AlHasakeh 101, AlRaqqah 85, Tartous 64, and AlSuwaida 7, all have tasted the brutality of the regime’s response to dissent
Sadly, we all know the number of those murdered is much higher – hundreds of thousands are detained and missing – many of those people are victims of torture and only God knows how many are already dead.
Trauma of the Living
The number of martyrs does not alone accurately reflect the level of the brutality inflicted on the population. There are countless wounded whose injuries may heal over time for some, never for others (thousands are now permanently disabled); and for the tens of thousands of survivors of torture, for the thousands of Syrian women (and men) who have been raped by Assad forces, their emotional scars will never heal. There are also over 1 million internally displaced refugees in addition to the 200,000 externally displaced refugees whose lives, families and communities have been forever torn apart.
Popular Uprising and Collective Punishment
What can be assessed, however, from the sacrifices of 18,408 martyrs is how widespread the revolution is, and how the regime collectively punishes all those who stand against them – regardless of background or geography.
While the Assad regime continues to burn the country, the popular uprising continues to grow with every martyr. And what began as a revolution for ‘dignity’ is now a personal struggle for millions of Syrians whose lives are directly impacted by regime repression.
Visit SyrianShuhada.com for daily updates on Syria’s martyrs.
To the highest heavens…RIP.