International mass media paint the situation in Syria as a never-ending Sunni-Shia feud and hatred towards President Assad. But somehow they keep silent on how thousands of Sunnis have found friends in the Shia-dominated Lebanese regions.
Instead, they say Sunni support for Syrian government is a result of Assad propaganda.
The Sunni refugees from Syria prove the international media wrong. Their experience shows that the Shia treat Sunnis as friends, while foreign militants stoke religious hatred and bring along nothing but devastation.
None of the refugees I talked to was a civil servant. All these people’s homes and lives were destroyed by the war.
Some had initially sympathized with the revolution, but as things went on, they changed their minds. Propaganda tells them to despise the Syrian government and the Shia, and to welcome the rebels, their liberators. But these people see the Syrian army as liberators and they are thankful to the Shia.
“Of course our relations with the Shia are good – how else can it be given that we have fled to join them?”
Nine months ago Khadijah Zahra, 35, fled from Bustan al-Qasr, an Aleppo suburb, with four kids. Her husband was waiting for her in Lebanon, in the north of Bekaa village, a Shia territory.
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