` With Little Choice, Syrians Look to Ancient Olive Groves for Firewood


With Little Choice, Syrians Look to Ancient Olive Groves for Firewood

Dec. 1, 2014
By Aldo Pesce

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Olive groves in Syria

In the coun­try­side near Idlib, in North­ern Syria, peo­ple are cut­ting their olive trees to heat their makeshift shel­ters.

In this area where that has pro­duces olive oil for cen­turies — the ear­li­est writ­ten men­tion of it was found in Ebla, Syria — this crop still rep­re­sents one of the most impor­tant sources of liveli­hood. But with the cold win­ter com­ing, the fuel short­age and its high cost is push­ing locals to cut their beloved trees.

The out­break of rev­o­lu­tion four years ago, and polit­i­cal insta­bil­ity con­demned peo­ple from Idlib to suf­fer for the scarcity of just about every­thing they need. More­over, the lack of secu­rity and spec­u­la­tion led to an increase in the price of fuel plac­ing it out of the reach of the mostly unem­ployed locals. Although olive trees have both an eco­nom­i­cal and a sen­ti­men­tal value, they are forced to cut and use their wood to sur­vive.

SEE ALSO: Olive Trees Face Death by Saw’ in Greece

In Idlib, as reported by Aljazeera, some com­plain against the regime while oth­ers accuse rebel forces, but every­one is feel­ing great sor­row cut­ting the silent sym­bol of peace and pros­per­ity in the Idlib coun­try­side, a bat­tle­field of a war that seems end­less.


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