Arguably one of the worst places in the world to be right now is the Syrian city of Homs. The city has been pounded by rocket and mortar fire since February 3. Most estimates put the number of people killed at 500, but no one really knows the true figure. The government says they are trying to stem a rebellion, but the indiscriminate nature of the artillery fire suggests they are imposing collective punishment on neighborhoods considered to be hotbeds of anti-Assad activism. (See map above)
Foreign journalists are basically barred from the area, but amateur video that has been streaming out of the city for the past week paints a grim picture of a population under constant assault.
Here are five of the most compelling videos from the Siege of Homs.
1) A man known to YouTube as “Danny” surveys the destruction outside a medical clinic. An explosion jolts him as he appeals for international help.
2) CNN broadcast parts of this video throughout the day yesterday. You don’t need to speak Arabic to know what this doctor is saying.
3) Mortar fire rains down on residential buildings in the Baba Amr neighborhood.
4) In perfect English, “Danny” shows children injured in the assault in Baba Amr. He’s very clearly frustrated with the international community. (NB UNICEF issued a statement this week decrying how children have become victims in Syria.)
5) This video, uploaded today, purports to show the neighborhood of Baba Amr. You can see the rubble strewn streets and smoking buildings.