October 20, 2013, Beirut, Lebanon — More than 700,000 Syrian civilians have crossed into Lebanon to seek refuge from the conflict that is raging in their country. In addition, hundreds of Syrian fighters have come to get professional medical care. Raed Rafei and Jane Teeling visited a clandestine clinic for wounded Syrian fighters in the Bekaa Valley, near the border with Syria. Their video shows a glimpse of the daily life of three young fighters.
All three are from Homs. All three are in limbo. Their journeys were marked by perilous delays and near-escapes. Undeterred by their injuries, they are waiting to recover in order to go back and start fighting again.
Though a safe haven for now, the clinic’s future is uncertain. Funds are running low, and the doctors are finding it increasingly difficult to meet their patients’ medical needs. Security for them is precarious in the Bekaa region, where Hezbollah, a staunch enemy of the Syrian opposition, has a strong presence.
But for now, the three roommates must wait. They pass the time by watching TV shows, phoning their families, praying, and trying to keep their spirits up.