A Land Torn from Within: A Glimpse of Syria

The story began on a hot Spring day of April 2010. Without my mother’s knowledge, I flew out of Austria and landed in one of the world’s oldest and continuously inhabited cities, where the roots of Moorish Spain were born: Damascus. For a first-time visitor in a Middle Eastern country, Syria had instantly left me in a euphoric state as I couldn’t get my eyes off a fascinating landscape that flashed before me. Damascus gave me a lasting impression of a harmonious coexistence between the three religions, which reminded me of what Al-Andalus was supposed to be like: a mosque standing next to a Catholic church and a Jewish synagogue. Traveling further West, I ended up in Palmyra, where I got to contemplate the ancient Roman ruins proudly standing all over the vast desert. I can still hear the noise of the markets and chaotic traffic that lingers in my ears and strongly recall every story behind the portraits I did with the people, even the time we almost got attacked by a pack of wolves in a cave. With the inviting aroma of shisha, I would always find myself sitting with strangers inhaling the smoke that filled up the air. Despite these experiences, I chose not to tell my mother about this journey, knowing that she would worry so much about me (I just sent her a post card that arrived a week after my return). However, it would bother her even more if I decided to go there these days. Returning to Syria may be out of the question, but, looking on the positive side, the least I can do is to pay a tribute to this country by taking another glimpse of the final year before its tumultuous period.

A Glimpse of a Land torn apart from within.

A Glimpse of a Land torn apart from within.

Damascus

A Catholic church in the city center_MG_6678_1 _MG_6677 _MG_6679-2 _MG_6493 _MG_6440 _MG_6448 _MG_6456 _MG_6481 _MG_6373 _MG_6367 _MG_6321 _MG_6313 _MG_6318 _MG_6320 _MG_6270 _MG_6214 _MG_6181 _MG_6182

Umayyad Mosque

Umayyad Mosque_MG_5893_MG_5881_MG_5868_MG_5844_MG_5843_MG_5711_MG_5730_MG_5736_MG_5765_MG_5832_MG_5837IMG_6282_MG_6767_MG_6728_MG_6587_MG_6583_MG_6389_MG_6382_MG_6332_MG_6325_MG_6324_MG_6383_MG_6361_MG_6311_MG_6294_MG_6276_MG_6218_MG_6227_MG_6213_MG_6214_MG_6209_MG_6201_MG_6192_MG_6264

 

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3 thoughts on “A Land Torn from Within: A Glimpse of Syria

  1. Michael Hodson

    Wow, gorgeous photos of Syria, I love the portraits, so sad about what’s happened recently. Thanks for sharing!

    1. enrique Post author

      thanks! It’s the least I can do to make others experience and appreciate a country that is now torn apart. it makes me somehow think if the people I photographed are doing fine. I’m a bit worried though.

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