Video: Even Syrian regime forces like to dance to Usher

February 7, 2013

In one of the few non-soul-shattering videos to emerge from the Syrian conflict, a local outfit called Ugarit News has posted what purportedly shows a group of regime troops dancing to Usher's hit 2004 single, "Yeah!"

Put aside for a moment that troops loyal to Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad have done some truly horrific things in the two years of fighting. (Babak Dehghanpisheh profiled some of the victims in a moving July story.) The video, which is goofy and at points even a little disarming, is a reminder that these young men are human as well, whatever their reasons for fighting.

After about a minute and a half of dancing, someone fires a gun into the air. The smiling faces turn serious and they chant, "With our souls, with our blood, we sacrifice for you, Bashar." That's when the camera pans back and you can see the black smoke rising out of the houses.

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Max Fisher | February 7, 2013