‘They beheaded my son in front of my eyes’: Grief-stricken Syrians share chilling memories with RT
Yasser had four sons before the war began, and now he has only one. His wife died soon after their youngest child was born.
“There were not my sons, they were my friends, the eldest was 25 years old and I am 43 years old. They are always with me, their shadow always follows me, I didn’t forget any of them, especially Basel the youngest. He was always with me, wherever I go, whatever I do,” Yasser stops, his voice breaking with emotion.
As Yasser was sharing his story with RT’s Lizzie Phelan, she could hear and see the fight for the military academies in South Aleppo – the same offensive in which Basel had been killed several days ago.
Three of Yasser’s sons were in the army, and despite the national rule that one child in the family should remain with the parents, his son, the only one he has left now, has signed up to have his revenge for the killed brothers.
One of Yasser’s sons died a war hero: after Palmyra was retaken, Islamic State (IS, ISIS/ISIL) militants attacked the Arak oil field close to the city. All officers left, but Mohammed stayed, reportedly killing 70 terrorists. The army consequently retook the field.
Yasser’s third son was beheaded in front of his eyes: “I was 100 meters away. Then they threw him in car, and I couldn’t get his body.”
The Syrian’s family has lost 70 members to the ongoing bloody conflict. His cousin Mahmoud’s family also has only one child surviving the war.
“After my son was killed by a sniper while going to work, we had just finished the documents for his death, we got little money from the government, so we returned home and were happy we had some money. I was taking a shower and they were sitting together, the two girls. A homemade rocket came from the balcony, entered the first room and the second room,” Mahmoud’s wife Najiba says.
Mahmoud was also severely wounded in the same attack that saw his daughters killed, having lost his leg, and an arm injured.
“I am an ex-athlete and a boxer, so you can imagine how I am suffering now, from a sportsman to being disabled, I can only sit or sleep in my bed,” he told RT.
In yet another harrowing sign of war in the city, makeshift graves started appearing along the roads and even on the intersections all over Aleppo.
Yet the grief-stricken Syrians don’t see the end anywhere near in sight, and are prepared for more sacrifice.
“If I had four sons again, I would send them to the army because this is the homeland. Even if they ask me to go and serve in the army, I would go and serve, this is our homeland,” Yasser says.
Mothers find it harder to accept the dire reality of the war.
“The most valuable thing in life is your kids. It is really hard for me, every time I break down, I begin to cry and I don’t know what to do, they were next to me and in a second I lost them. There are so many mothers like me in this situation. Whenever I stop and sit I pray to God that he burns their hearts, as they burnt my heart after taking my daughters from me,” Najiba says, crying bitterly.