“My message to the families of our martyrs and their loved ones is that we are your children, and brothers and sisters, your missed family will remain forever in our hearts, for they have perished so we may live, and exalt their sacrifice…I heartily apologize to those martyrs I could not find pictures of to archive….may mercy and glory be bestowed onto their blessed souls“
Tamer Turkmane was born in 1990 and hails from Homs. With the onset of the revolution, Tamer deserted his post in mandatory military service heading to Daraa, in southern Syria, to document the outbreak of protests there. Daraa is remembered for being the site of the onset of our holy revolution. He was to be injured seven month later by the regime whilst covering demonstrations.
After undergoing treatment, Turkmane headed to Jordan to aid in NGO efforts for salvation and rescuing those escaping from the regime’s war on Daraa and its environs.
Three years later, and with the ever increasing death toll brought about by the barbarous Baathist forces, Tamer came up with the idea to document the first 50,000 victims of the regime’s barbarous onslaught. Personal pictures of victims were collated and displayed in global campaigns to apply pressure on international actors.
He was to develop this project further to comprise an archive of the Syrian Revolution. Images, video footage of prominent events including massacres and war crimes, media interviews and reports have all been collated by Tamer to be a reference point for future generation of Syrians on what happened in our country, and the fearless courage of Syrians from all over coming together to demand their rights and a better tomorrow. As of February 2020, 1.7 million videos, 370 books, 185,000 martyrs (documented as of 2018) and thousands of reports have been archived by Tamer.
His work has taken on an even more crucial role in the past few years with pertinent activist footage being deleted from Youtube and Google by machine learning algorithms. Despite the toll taken on his mental health in his project, Tamer persists steadfastly. As such he not only preserves our history and revolutionaries but ensures the sacrifice of thousands of activists who made Syria the most documented international crisis so that justice may eventually be served.
In this paper, you will find Tamer’s testimony as well as a high quality update on several archiving initiatives of the Syrian Revolution: https://english.enabbaladi.net/archives/2021/03/remnants-of-truth-the-syrian-archive-as-a-tool-of-accountability/