Community Post: How Syria’s Dictator Creates An Alternate Reality On Facebook

Assad likes himself as a politician and public figure.

Even as horrifying images, news and footage continue to spill out of Syria’s civil war, Bashar Al-Assad’s Facebook page, about 325,000 supporters strong, insists that all is well in Syria and that rumors of terror in Syria are spawned by “masonic” western media and “terrorist” Free Syrian Army.

Assad’s Facebook page is a shocking look into what a leader’s social media presence looks like in a time of national chaos. It is boldly focused on dispensing a collected, positive image of Syria — one in which the rebels are terrorists and the will of the people is drowned out by Western interests. It is a Facebook that mirrors many of Assad’s most resounding real-life criticisms.

3. “[This video] shows that Syria is still fine… The image is in front of you, and the judgment is for you.”

This video, posted on Assad’s Facebook page, is a bucolic tour of Syria, featuring singing Assad-supporters and swans on a river; not featured are the landscapes scarred by a civil war that has taken an estimated 17,000 lives.

4. “ّWhen you see the moon: the leader Bashar al-Assad.”

Dorrah Ibrahim: “Confirmed proof of the holiday.”
Mira Murmura: “May God protect your country.”
Monif al-Ahmad: “Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha”

6. The rebel army is often referred to as irhabiin, or terrorists. “The arrest of several terrorists in the Andan countryside, trying to enter Aleppo.”

7. From a Wednesday afternoon post: “the victory is near, and tell the Syrian National Army that ‘it is your time for victory and pride.’”

Meanwhile, sources confirm that Assad’s cabinet has rebuffed international advisory to surrender power, as rebel forces gain stronger footing in Aleppo and seize control of state military missiles and vehicles.

8. “For your eyes, all the love, Mr. President.”

Ayman Bla Wla Shi: “The highest one protects you.”
Garine Izmirlian: “God protect you from death.”
Abdu Al-Sumati: “And I’m with you, may our God protect you and Syria.”
Roya Naser: “God protect you.”

10. The proposed constitutional referendum has been posted as a Facebook note:

11. The Facebook feed features a number of cartoons attributing blame for national issues to the West and the media: “This here is the situation…”

Ali H Ali: “Of course.”
Youssef Akram: “Sir, the most telling picture of the Arab situation.”
Enas Elias: “Correct, this is the bitter truth.”

13. “Only and exclusively on the screens of the masonic media…”

The cartoon depicts a Syrian rebel shooting from a protective bunker of media outlets that have spoken out against Assad. The soldier is saying “God is the greatest.”

Sanaa Hasan: “And God’s curses on them and their screens.”
Hashem Ramadan: “God protect you Mr. President.”
Seba Slovei: “God’s the greatest.”
Abou Zelzal: “Mercenaries”
Hani Ali: “Just because they are the scum of their God!”

15. Meanwhile, as the situation in Damascus grows tenuous, Assad keeps picking up Facebook fans. At 10:20 AM EST:

16. About 6 hours later, he has 100 more fans.

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