* Extracts from an exclusive interview given to internationalnewsandviews.com, your 24/7 online news and film service.
“Khaled al-Hamad leaned against the side of his battered car and lit a cigarette.
“He invited me to take a drag, which I declined.
“’Everyone refuses to understand. But you seem reasonable. Will you let me explain?’
“’My so-called ‘cannibalism’ was not just about war. It was not merely about blood and honour or even the humiliation of a woman and her two daughters, all fully naked. This conflict is eating the heart of my people.
“’Let me illustrate,’ he said, gobbing the words so hard his spittle hit the ground in bullets. ‘I love Syria much more than I loathe our Jewish pig neighbours in Israel. So when I discovered that the dead dog’s mobile phone contained images of children being murdered along with rapes, torture and dismemberment, I gave him a taste of his own medicine.
“’Believe me’, continued the Syrian rebel fighter also known as Abu Sakkar, ’if the bloodshed in Syria continues at this rate, the few people left will behave like I do now.
“’It is Bashar al-Assad and his cohorts who are the true cannibals, not me. I may have eviscerated and consumed the heart and liver of one of their men but they have violated - laid to waste - the soul of our beloved country. You can see the result for yourself. I’ll never regret my action. Indeed, I’ll be happy to do it again and over until the end.
“’I hope to slaughter all the Alawites,’” added Hamad. ‘Maybe,’ he added eagerly, ‘you’d like to see another video clip showing me ‘sawing’ a member of the pro-regime Shabiha militia with the same axe I use to saw trees? I hacked him in small pieces and in large ones. It gave me as much pleasure as seeing a pilot’s head cut off and roasted on a grill. I can smell the aroma even now. Then I and the others drank the corpse’s health with his own blood. It was most noble; quite simply, a life-changing moment.
“’Are you sure you don’t want to share my cigarette?’”
(Copyright, Natalie Irene Wood – 24 May 2013)