We have had an Assad in office since 1971, starting with Hafez al-Assad, and then his son, Bashar al-Assad since 2000. Going on fifty years, the al-Assad family has ruled as brutal dictators.
The Assad family seems to compete to see who can commit the bloodiest, most atrocious crimes against the civilians in Syria. Hafez infamously ordered the Hama Massacre in 1982, where somewhere between 10,000 to 40,000 civilians were slaughtered, and 100,000 expelled, and 15,000 disappeared.
Bashar has outdone his father at brutality, murdering between 384,000 and 577,660 civilians since 2011; and displacing 5.6 million children, women, and men. These counts don’t include the disappeared and currently detained.
As Syrians, we crave this type of democracy that the US enjoys. The ability to cast a free vote on actual decent candidates who will care for the people, not commit genocide against them and displace them.
I hope one day to live in any democratic country, anywhere, with the right and freedom to elect the president, like everyone else does.