A video uploaded to YouTube this week purports to show captured members of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s shabiha militia, with their mustaches half-shaven off, chanting “Allah bless the Free [Syrian] Army.”
The enforced shaving of the ostensible Assad loyalists, a mark of disgrace and humiliation in Arab culture, presumably took place after they were captured by Free Syrian Army forces.
It was not clear under what circumstances the pro-regime men were captured, nor could the authenticity of the video’s contents be confirmed.
The incident would hardly be the first case of retaliatory humiliation by either side in the Syrian conflict. Numerous videos uploaded to YouTube over the 16-month uprising against Assad have purported to show one side or the other mutilating or defiling the bodies of their opponents.