Syrian Social Media Buzz: Massacres, Finger Pointing, and Russian Backlash

Millions of Syrians are using social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Skype to disseminate and discuss the conflict. Each week Syria Deeply monitors the online conversation in English and Arabic, pulling out the highlights in a feature called the Social Media Buzz.

Syrians have experienced practically every imaginable form of killing over the past two years. But last week Aleppo was introduced to a new type of massacre. At least 80 men, most between the ages of 20 and 40, were executed and dumped en masse in the Qweik River on Jan. 29, demonstrating that war still has some unrevealed horrors.

Corpses bobbed in the river until they were retrieved, in the Bustan Al Qasr neighborhood in the rebel-controlled section of Aleppo. Activists and fighters dragged the dead men from the water and placed them on the river bank, a scene captured in a widely shared photo (right).

Graphic videos of what became known as the “River Massacre” were quickly disseminated across social media networks. Foreign journalists and photographers were able to access the site and confirm the activists’ reports.

But well before the dead were identified and buried, the battle of narratives began…



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