On 10th Anniversary of Syrian Uprising, US Holocaust Museum Calls Out International ‘Failure’ to Apply ‘Never Again’ Principle
In a sharply-worded statement to mark the tenth anniversary of the uprising against Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) asserted that the world’s failure to stop the mass atrocities committed by pro-Assad forces, Islamist terror groups and pro-Turkish militias showed that it had “failed to fulfill the promise of ‘Never Again.'”
In the intervening decade, more than 500,000 Syrian civilians have been killed, and more than 12 million — half the country’s population— have been forced to flee their homes. Numerous war crimes and crimes against humanity, including rape, mass executions and the use of proscribed chemical weapons, have been documented by international organizations.
“We continue to stand in solidarity with the Syrian people at this somber moment — they have not been forgotten,” said Naomi Kikoler, director of the USHMM’s Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide. “We honor the brave Syrians who have risked so much to come forward, bear witness to these horrific crimes, provide life-saving care, and advocate tirelessly for justice, accountability and an end to the killing. Their heroism has tragically been met with the abject failure of the international community to protect them, contributing to the devastating consequences that continue today.”
The USHMM statement further noted that the international response to Syria’s ongoing agony “continues to be impeded by the politicization of humanitarian norms, contributing to an ongoing paralysis in the UN Security Council.”
It continued: “These crimes demand justice. Both formal criminal prosecutions and broader transitional justice are needed to repair the fractured Syrian mosaic, restore dignity to victims and communities, and provide the opportunity to build trust and collective memory.”