The Syrian young man sat in a corner of his room weeping while telling his fiancée why they have to go their separate ways; torture and sexual abuse in the regime’s prison has rendered him impotent. The ordeal has left him feeling so ashamed and violated; he cannot even look his fiancée in the eye.
Another young man says: "If I do not leave the country soon, I will kill myself, I cannot live anymore in the country where I’ve lost 14 friends, I have no friends left here, I hate the university… how I'm going to go back to the university without them?"
The lives of thousands of young Syrians have been systematically destroyed, leaving them with deep psychological scars. Hundreds, perhaps thousands were tortured, their dignity insulted, and their basic rights violated. Many of them were raped and sexually abused and they cannot even talk about their ordeals for fear of social ramifications. Thousands of Syrian students have been forced to leave their studies either because they were expelled because of their political activism, or to join the army and the opposition armed groups. Thousands of Syrians have been displaced with their families, to start an endless journey to seek asylum far away from the madness of war. Thousands of Syrians in are hunted, living undercover fearing for their lives. That not to mention the countless numbers of young men and women kidnapped, tortured and detained by the new tyrants in some of the areas outside the regime control, where strange extremist groups are taking over and persecuting people in the name of religion and moralityز
This impossible trap between the oppression of the regime and the extremism of some of the opposition armed groups has made it impossible for thousands of Syrians to continue living in the country. The only thing they can aspire to now is to leave and seek asylum or any other form of immigration elsewhere, with no intention whatsoever to go back to their country.But even when they leave, Syrians are hunted by tragedy wherever they are. The political instability in the host countries has made Syrian refugees a target of harassment and threats with deportation. The lucky ones who are not deported or harassed are under a constant pressure in the find jobs and provide for their families, in an increasingly difficult economic situation, without any support from any organization or government.
A lot of ink has been spilled on the plight of the fragile segments of the Syrian population, i.e. children, women, the sick and the elderly, but almost nothing on the real tragedy an entire generation of young men and women who find themselves facing an uncertain future. Rescuing and helping this lost and severely traumatized generation should be the priority of the political opposition, the civil society organizations, and any Syrian able to help in any possible way. We need to make a difference in the lives of those young men and women for they are the ones who are going to rebuild the country and heal the torn and fragmented community. Rather than leaving them waiting endlessly for an asylum or immigration visa, it is our duty to provide them with real educational and professional opportunities, and all possible forms of psychological and social support we can afford as organizations, groups, and individuals.
**Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Rozana Radio.