A Sadder Story of Syrian Celebrity

May 11, 2011 § Leave a comment

In a scenario only fit for a Syrian drama, Syrian drama stars are trading insults regarding who did or didn’t sign petitions expressing solidarity with Deraa (the town besieged by the Syrian Army).

There are a few petitions in question. The first, signed by actors Jamal Sulaiman and Basim Yakhour, called for an investigation into the events of Deraa and for mourning over martyrs.  Actor Zuhair Abdul Karim went on Syrian TV and called for these traitors to have their Syrian citizenship removed.

Then, actors circulated another petition that called for humanitarian aid for the children of Deraa. The cycle of denunciations for being traitors began. Shortly after the release of this petition, a few of the Syrian actors —  including Mona Wasif — who had supposedly signed the petition claimed they never signed anything. These actors then formed another petition recanting the previous petition, saying they had been influenced by instigators in the media. As if that weren’t enough petitions, Syrian producers drafted a petition stating that anyone who signed a petition about Deraa is a traitor to Syria.

The al-Akhbar article on the debacle ends on a somber note. They only position that is safe for Syrian artists, the author said, is that of silence.

In any situation, it seems the one solution for the Syrian actor these days is silence and to remain a spectator in these events, since any action will be met with a denunciation (literally: making a traitor of) campaign.

Al-Akhbar ends the piece with a bizarre account of a delegation of actors from the Syrian Artists Union visiting wounded soldiers in the Tishreen Military Hospital. Al-Akhbar reports that doctors started yelling at the actors, telling them to leave immediately. The doctors said that they were visiting the hospital only for the good of themselves.

Top Photo of Jamal Sulaiman from al-Sharq al-Awsat

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