From Governance to Refugees


This issue contains articles spanning the spectrum from Syria’s pre 2011 politics and governance to the role and impact of refugees during the Syrian Uprising. First, Ahmad Mamoun explores the role of the military in politics in the 1954-58 period, when there was a unique interaction—a duality of power--between military activism and semi-democratic politics in the country. This paper provides an exceptionally rich insight into the complexities of Syrian politics. Equally nuanced is the penetrating analysis by Armenak Tokmajyan of “authoritarian conflict management” i.e. the “mechanisms of domination” deployed by the Syrian Ba’th regime, which he shows to be a subtle combination of threat of violence, co-optation and use of local intermediaries. In the third contribution, Line Khatib analyses how the regime has sharply centralized and institutionalized its mechanisms of control over the Sunni religious field since the Uprising and Iranian intervention. In their paper, Umut Ozkaleli and Sean Byrne examine opposition governance under Local Councils and the Syrian Interim Government through the lens of the perceptions of Syrian refugees of their performance.  Finally Ahmad Barakat continues the focus on refugees, specifically critiquing perceptions in Europe of a security risk from them by looking at the experience of Syrian refugees in Germany.   

Published: 2024-03-21