Mohammed al-Qasim - Idlib “Military Headquarters " is one of the games Syrian children are playing nowadays inspired by the ongoing battles they witness on daily basis. Children, regardless of the direness and difficulty of any situation, have a natural need to fill their free time with play and games, and Syrian children are not an exception.
These children have left their childhood toys behind to replace them with other toys to mimic the reality of their daily lives where the weapons of death and destruction are the most prevalent icons. Mohammed, a child from the countryside of Idlib tells us "We've created the headquarters game because there are no schools . We’re rebels and we’ll fight Bashar." Anti- aircraft has become a concern for the majority of Syrians, including children. One child imagines that he can bring down the planes bombing the houses with the wooden machine gun he made himself.
Ali tells us how they make their plastic machine guns from the scattered pieces of plastic and metal. "To follow the latest updates on the ground," they use plastic pieces shaped like wireless radios.
Children toys and games change and adapt according to the surrounding environment. Sadly, it seems that violence, killing and weapons have become recently the background of the lives of millions of Syrian children.