Sunday, 4 October 2015

Occupation: Photographer of corpses

Operation Cesar: Syrian regime crimes exposed

 Al-Araby al-Jadeed publishes excerpts from the book Operation Caesar, the testimony of a dissident photographer who worked for the regime before defecting and leaking thousands of civilian torture photographs

 ' "My name is Caesar. I used to work for the Syrian regime. I was a photographer in the military police in Damascus. Before the revolution, I was responsible for taking photographs of crimes and accidents involving the military. This included suicides, drowning, and road and fire accidents.

 I had not seen anything like this before. Before the revolution the regime would torture detainees to extract information, but they were now doing so to kill. 

 I saw wax marks and I once saw a round mark from a small stove used to make tea that had burned the face and hair of one of the bodies. Some of them had deep wounds, gouged eyes, broken teeth and marks from being hit by electric cables used to start car batteries."

Caesar wanted to stop working and defect, but Sami talked him into staying, because he was the only one who could gather insider evidence against the regime. He promised to stand by him - no matter what happened.

For two years, and despite the risk, Caesar copied millions of pictures of prisoners, which can be seen today online and at the Holocaust Museum in Washington DC.'

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