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Slaughter or Liberation?: A Debate on Russia's Role in the Syrian War & the Fall of Aleppo


With the aid of Russian airstrikes, Syria has taken near full control of the city of Aleppo in a major defeat for forces hoping to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Before fighting began in 2012, Aleppo was Syria’s largest city with a population of over 2 million. Some of the first major peaceful protests against Assad’s rule broke out in Aleppo in March 2011. But today the city is in shambles after four years of fighting between Syria and rebel groups. A turning point in the battle of Aleppo occurred in September 2015, when Russia began carrying out airstrikes to aid the Syrian government. Russia described the fall of Aleppo as a victory against terrorists and jihadists. But the United States has decried the Russian-backed offensive. We host a debate between Kenneth Roth, executive director of Human Rights Watch, and Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at New York University and Princeton University.

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Last modified on Thursday, 15 December 2016 10:33

Comments (1)

  1. Roland Q. Regos

Ahh, what a debate. It's very interesting that their positions are not necessarily in opposition of one another. I understood Mr. Roth protesting the brutal methods for which the Assad regime is fighting the war. On the other hand, Mr. Cohen is...

Ahh, what a debate. It's very interesting that their positions are not necessarily in opposition of one another. I understood Mr. Roth protesting the brutal methods for which the Assad regime is fighting the war. On the other hand, Mr. Cohen is just saying that the anti-Russia narrative is dangerous, and that the US' intentions are nefarious as well... To me, they both seem right.... I love knowledge LOL!

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