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About A Boy: How Syria's 13-Year-Old Martyr Will Haunt The Cruel Regime That Murdered Him

Essay: Hamzah al-Khatib, the 13-year-old boy who was tortured and killed by Bashar Al-Assad’s regime, has become a potent symbol of the revolution. Moroccan writer Tahar Ben Jelloun meditation on how the victim's soul holds the power to bring dow

People carrying the photo of Hamzah al-Khatib during a solidarity march with the Syrian people in Montreal.
People carrying the photo of Hamzah al-Khatib during a solidarity march with the Syrian people in Montreal.
Tahar Ben Jelloun

Light is what makes a man, Victor Hugo once said. Hamzah al-Khatib was just a 13-year-old boy. He died taking with him that part of light which springs from courage and dignity. As Abou Dib, a journalist for the Lebanese daily L'Orient-Le Jour wrote on June 2, "For Syria, Hamzah was not tortured. He was just slightly killed."

Hamzah was arrested on April 29 in Deraa for having sung "down with the regime!" He was tortured. His tormentors applied electric shocks, burned his feet, elbows and knees, cut his penis and lacerated his face. And when they'd finsihed, they fired three bullets into his body - one right in the chest. His body was returned to his family on May 31. At the same time, Hamzah's father was arrested and forced to publicly accuse Salafists of having martyred his son.

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Ideas

García Márquez And Truth: How Journalism Fed The Novelist's Fantasy

In his early journalistic writings, the Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez showed he had an eye for factual details, in which he found the absurdity and 'magic' that would in time be the stuff and style of his fiction.

Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez reads his book

J. D. Torres Duarte

BOGOTÁ — In short stories written in the 1940s and early 50s and later compiled in Eyes of a Blue Dog, the late Gabriel García Márquez, Colombia's Nobel Prize-winning novelist, shows he is as yet a young writer, with a style and subjects that can be atypical.

Stylistically, García Márquez came into his own in the celebrated One Hundred Years of Solitude. Until then both his style and substance took an erratic course: touching the brevity of film scripts in Nobody Writes to the Colonel, technical experimentation in Leaf Storm, the anecdotal short novel in In Evil Hour or exploring politics in Big Mama's Funeral. Throughout, the skills he displayed were rather of a precocious juggler.

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