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Geopolitics

Syrian Rebels Move Underground, Turn To Tunnel Warfare

Rebel fighters are no match for Bashar al-Assad's superior military might. But underground, they use tunnels to travel safely and plant bombs close to the president's seats of power.

A Member of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) carries a homemade rocket in Aleppo.
A Member of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) carries a homemade rocket in Aleppo.
Mohammed al-Khatieb

ALEPPO In this city, where battles to control each square block are often fought hand-to-hand, rebel factions are reverting to one of the oldest means of strategic warfare: underground tunnels. Above ground, rebels are exposed to the superior military power of President Bashar al-Assad"s forces. But in the tunnels, they say they are safe and can travel through them freely, without fear of regime bombs and snipers.

During the course of Syria's conflict, tunnels have been used strategically in a range of scenarios. They helped the rebels of Homs survive the regime’s two-year siege of the city. They used the narrow, dark crawl spaces to transport food and medical aid into the old city. In time, the tunnels were discovered and sealed off by the regime.

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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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