Yarmouk: Who’s Really Starving the Palestinians?

According to mainstream media Assad is starving every man, woman and child in Yarmouk, but is he really?

It was no accident that led Yarmouk and its residents to be embroiled in the Syrian crisis. The Palestinians living in Yarmouk have found themselves to be pawns in the dirty war against Assad.

The mainstream narrative is one replete with inaccuracies and bias against the Syrian government. Their version of events is black and white while deeply playing on the emotions of naïve audiences who peddle their narrative.

Assad and his army are deliberately besieging the camp and blocking aid from reaching the impoverished residents. Why? Because he’s using hunger as a tool of war to torment the people. This version of events has certainly fuelled the human rights dimension of the conflict, which is often used as a pretext for intervention.

However, when Sharmine Narwani, an academic and specialist in Arab affairs visited the Yarmouk camp the story she was privy to after speaking to the residents was compelling!

In 2012 residents in the camp rebelled against the governing body, whose position of neutrality was disliked. Some of the rebels who are alleged to be loyal to Hamas opened the door to the Islamists. Once the gangs infiltrated the camp what followed was Armageddon.

The Islamists began to loot the camp, they stole medical supplies, food, and anything they could get their hands on, systematically destroying the camp, including the hospital.

Would the Syrian government tolerate this in an area of Damascus, home to the seat of the government? I think not.

When the Free Syrian Army entered the camp, the Syrian army began to encircle the camp, but keeping to their promise that would not enter unless the governing Palestinian Front for Liberation allowed.

The Syria army via sms asked the Palestinians to evacuate the area, offering them accommodation in surrounding hotels, schools and gyms. The lucky ones managed to escape and some chose to flee to Lebanon.

The Syrian army then attacked the camp ejecting the FSA. However, the ordeal with the residents did not end there. Since the siege, the area has become a haven for Al Nusra and ISIS militants who have been making a great deal of profit by developing a stockpile of aid and selling it at threefold prices.

Those who dare to defy the militants are sniped at!
Food for thought?

Needless to say the tragedy of Yarmouk had fuelled the propaganda machine against Assad and the army. Those jumping on the bandwagon don’t hesitate to remind everyone of what a monster Assad is by starving the Palestinians, when in reality it’s the NATO backed death squads.

For those who are blowing the trumpet against Assad, including Palestinians I would like to challenge them by asking which Arab country championed the Palestinian cause and stood by the resistance by arming them, so they could fight back? Yes, it’s Syria.

I would also like to ask, which Arab country took in millions of Palestinian refugees and gave them equal rights bar citizenship? Yes, it’s Syria. Palestinians in Syria were entitled to everything Syrians were, while their counterparts in the West Bank, Gaza and other Arab countries were persecuted.

In fact, to even label Yarmouk as a camp is somewhat incorrect.

The sad reality is that the coerced involvement of the Yarmouk camp has been part of a strategy to dissolve the Palestinian cause by taking out one of its staunchest supporters, Syria.

I guess the proxy death squads in Syria should be proud that they are carrying out the wishes of the late Ariel Sharon of Israel: “Sharon only died after he was assured that someone in Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp is continuing what he started in Sabra and Shatila!”

Written by Sara Yasmin Anwar

Sara is a freelance journalist specialising in politics of the Middle East and Arab affairs.

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