US Student Killed While Filming Violence in Syria
Just five months ago, Bassel Shahade, a film student at Syracuse University, was explaining to the hosts of Democracy Now! that he had to speak quietly. He had hunkered down in an apartment in Damascus, Syria and worried that soldiers outside could hear him.
“Thousands of detainees are still in the prisons,” Shahade said in a low voice. “Among them are tens of my friends. They are not terrorists. They are filmmakers, journalists, doctors, lawyers. They are very high intellectual people and activists.”
In the studio, host Amy Goodman worried for Shahade’s safety. “We can hear you just fine, Bassel, but we want you to be very careful,” Goodman said. “You can tell us you can’t talk. That is fine.”
Shahade, 28, was killed Monday while filming the aftermath of attacks by government security forces. The United Nations believes that 9,000 people, most of them civilians, have been killed during the 14-month uprising against President Bashar Assad.