Hama in Ruins as Syrian Forces Withdraw

Vehicles burnt, shell casings everywhere in west Syrian town
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 12, 2011 6:41 AM CDT

After a week-long assault on Hama, the Syrian town has been left full of blackened, burned-out vehicles and uncollected garbage, with spent shell casings from all sizes of weapons strewn everywhere, reports the Telegraph in a rare first-hand look at what it calls "evidence of a ferocious, one-sided assault." Although the heaviest armored vehicles were withdrawn from Hama two days ago, few people brave the streets and most shops remain closed.

"Soldiers fired in every direction. Many houses were assaulted in our neighborhood," said one man, pointing to the bullet holes that riddle his home. Despite months of unrest that have killed more than 2,000 people—200 dead this month in Hama alone, and another 14 reportedly killed in Syria yesterday—few journalists have been allowed in to witness the fighting directly; a small group of reporters were given an escorted tour yesterday. "The soldiers and security forces destroyed everything, they didn't leave anything. We are in God's hands," another resident told them. (More Syria stories.)

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