In April on Detroit Today we discussed the horrifying chemical attacks in Syria, and we heard from a couple of listeners who are native to the Ghouta region where the attacks took place.
The listeners we heard from still have friends and family living in Douma, riding out a civil war in the most desperate of circumstances with little to no options other than to wait, hope, and pray.
Producer Laura Weber-Davis spoke with one of those listeners, Mouhammad, a physician who moved to southeast Michigan after doing his residency in the American south. Mouhammad learned about the strong Syrian and Arab-American population in southeast Michigan, and was drawn to move here. Now he has no option of returning to Syria, though most of his family is still there.
Laura asked Mouhammad to come in and share his personal story of growing up in Douma and watching a civil war unfold. We heard from Mouhammad about the early days of the Arab Spring in 2011, and that he had been arrested and held blindfolded and naked in a jail cell for casually mentioning to friends that he disagreed with decisions made by Bashar al Assad’s government.
For the sake of his safety we agreed not to use Mouhammad’s last name. To hear the conversation with Mouhammad, click on the audio player above.