The Morning They Came For Us

Dispatches from Syria
May 4, 2016

Four years ago – in the infancy of Syria's civil war – Janine di Giovanni traveled to Syria on assignment for the New York Times. That trip became the first of many as conflict in the region escalated tragically, reaching far beyond borders and affecting millions of lives.

When di Giovanni, a seasoned war correspondent, first arrived in Damascus in 2012, she immediately recognized the familiar sight of a country trembling on the brink of war. Through the intimate stories of the ordinary civilians she encountered in places like Damascus, Homs, Darayya, and Aleppo, The Morning They Came For Us illuminates the harsh realities of warfare from all sides. What began with a handful of teenagers writing anti-government slogans rapidly turned into a full civil war, transforming a people in denial into a people in the midst of violence from which they have never recovered.

New America talked with International Security Program Fellow Janine di Giovanni and The New Yorker contributor Ben Taub on the devastating impacts of the Syria crisis and the ongoing realities of daily life in a war zone.