The New Face of the Syrian Civil War


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To those who know about the traumas of war, it is ‘the thousand-yard stare’ — that blank look from unfocused eyes that have seen too much but cannot comprehend the horror they have witnessed.

The phrase was coined in World War II to describe the haunted faces of shell-shocked soldiers coming out of battle. An artist who captured it back then asked plaintively: ‘How much can a human stand?’

And here it is again, on the face of a five-year-old boy, an innocent pulled from the rubble of the battle-ravaged Syrian city of Aleppo after an air strike by government forces, just the latest casualty in that benighted country’s blood-soaked civil war.

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