Youth, liberalism ascend in Syria

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Since the death of President Hafez al-Assad last year, the Syrian government has embarked on a major push for democratization, according to FEED. And this isn’t an isolated case: A handful of Middle Eastern countries have been swept along in this recent tide of liberalization led by youthful new leaders.

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Hafez al-Assad’s son, Bashar, has already brought significant reforms both personal and economic in his short term. Under his administration, the nation has relaxed rules limiting freedom of the press, released hundreds of political prisoners, privatized the banking system, and approved the creation of a stock exchange.

While Syria seems to be moving towards a Western-style liberal democracy, the drift hasn’t brought Damascus any closer to Washington. The younger al-Assad has spurned US requests to drop demands on territory occupied by Israel and has moved to open up trade with Iraq.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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