"Autocracy" Vs. "Democracy": Stunning Before And After Pictures Of Syria's Largest City

Tyler Durden's picture

As we documented last autumn in “Syria Showdown: Russia, Iran Rally Forces, US Rearms Rebels As ‘Promised’ Battle For Aleppo Begins,” Syria’s largest city has been among the hardest hit of the country’s urban centers over the course of the last five years.

Newsweek documented the destruction in a series of stark and profoundly indelible images in 2012, perhaps the most striking of which was this:

Recapturing the city is critical to restoring Bashar al-Assad’s grip on power.

If Aleppo is liberated, the rebellion will be all but crushed. The Alawite government would once again control the country’s urban backbone in the west and, more importantly from a big picture perspective, Iran would have scored a major victory in the effort to preserve the Shiite crescent not to mention its supply lines to Hezbollah.

Likewise, a victory at Aleppo would invalidate US claims that Vladimir Putin was destined to get Moscow into a “quagmire” in Syria and the Russians would score a major geopolitical coup by effectively replacing the US as Mid-East superpower puppet master.

As for the Gulf monarchies, the demise of the Sunni insurgency in Syria would be a bitter blow. The effort to roll back Iranian influence would be forever remembered as an abject failure and Tehran would score sectarian bragging rights over Riyadh just as international sanctions are lifted and Iran ramps up crude production.

So important is the battle for the city that Quds commander Qassem Soleimani himself supervised the initial stages of the push north from Latakia before disappearing into thin air in November only to resurface two days ago at a rally celebrating the Islamic Revolution. 

Now that the eyes of the world are on Aleppo which may well go down in history as the site where World War III began, we thought it an opportune time to bring you the following before and after images which depict what life was like in the city under the "brutal dictatorship" of Bashar al-Assad and what life is like now that the US has exported democracy to Syria.

Autocracy:

Democracy:

Autocracy:

Democracy:

Autocracy:

Democracy:

Autocracy:

Democracy:

Autocracy: 

Democracy:

"Yes we can"... destroy the entire Middle East...

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