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Shabbiha: Assad’s Paramilitaries and Mass Violence in Syria
A public lecture by Dr. Uğur Ümit Üngör (Utrecht University, Department of History, and NIOD Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Amsterdam)
October 03, 2019 @ 4:00 pm - October 03, 2019 @ 5:30 pm

This lecture offers an examination of pro-state paramilitary violence in the Syrian conflict. It analyzes the emergence and transformation of pro-state paramilitarism in Syria in the context of the uprising and civil war. It focuses on the Syrian government’s deployment of the Shabbiha (later renamed ‘National Defense Forces’), irregular paramilitaries dressed in civilian gear and committing a broad spectrum of violence, including torture, kidnapping, assassination, sexual violence, and a string of massacres across the country. Based on 7 years of ethnographic fieldwork including 80+ interviews with victims, perpetrators, and other eye witnesses, I argue that the Shabbiha phenomenon manifests a fundamental complexity in its appearance, identity, motives, cleavage, and regional varieties. To unravel some of these complexities, the paper looks at the micro-dynamics of Shabbiha violence in the city of Homs as a particularly instructive example of pro-state paramilitarism.

Cosponsored by the USC Department of Middle East Studies.

Refreshments will be served.

"Shabbiha: Assad’s Paramilitaries and Mass Violence in Syria" - Public lecture by Uğur Ümit Üngör is Associate Professor at the Department of History at Utrecht University Uğur Ümit Üngör (Associate Professor of History, Utrecht University)

This lecture offered an examination of pro-state paramilitary violence in the Syrian conflict. It analyzed the emergence and transformation of pro-state paramilitarism in Syria in the context of the uprising and civil war. 

Language: English

Details:
Start: October 03, 2019 / 4:00 PM
End: October 03, 2019 / 5:30 PM
Where: Doheny Memorial Library, Room 240 , Los Angeles
Venue:
Doheny Memorial Library, Room 240
3550 Trousdale Parkway , Los Angeles United States