Syrian Christians quietly celebrate Christmas as the nation's war enters its forth year, marking a death toll of more than 100,000 people and the displacement of millions to neighboring countries seeking shelter.
With shelter, came a stark winter and a prayer of return, according to an Al Jazeera report.
This year, Syria witnessed a great deal of havoc, death, and a tremendous amount of kidnappings that left most of its citizens hopeless. This hopelessness can be seen in the works of artists who, at times, express a nation's distress in a single artwork better than a million words.
Depictions of Santa in Syrian Artworks
Emulating kidnappings in Syria, Jawad painted an abducted Santa in ragged clothes, kneeling on his knees at gunpoint:In another artwork by Anas Salameh, Santa's corpse is being carried out of Syria's Al Yarmouk Refugee Camp for Palestinians: Santa is also seen in tears as his gifts arrived a little too late for Syria's martyred children: Here, he sits alongside their graves in mourning: The Holiday Spirit: Jingles, Christmas Trees, and Ornaments
A skit playing off the Jingle Bills Christmas song calls for freedom and the ousting of Bashar Al-Assad. The creator, known as Mogwli Mowgli, has died under torture:
Anwar Al Eissa paints a metaphoric ornament soaked in blood, hanging in a freezer, as if depicting the dire freezing conditions many Syrians are going through this Christmas:Amjad Wardeh paints a Christmas tree out of an explosion's aftermath:
— رهام (@Rehambo) December 24, 2013
Whereas Hani Abbas creates it out of refugee tents:Aleppian artist Mohamad Alweis writes “Merry Christmas” with a snowflake made of mortar shells and missiles, subtly commenting on the 100 barrels that fell over Aleppo this past week: However, with darkness arises a flicker of hope and belief in a better tomorrow. Watch as Syrian filmmaker Eyad Aljarod films Saraqeb's children, Muslims and Christians, celebrate Christmas and share their dreams: