National Geographic : 2014 Mar
40 national geographic • march 2014 Patriotism and support for the president’s regime are instilled at an early age. At a government-run elemen- tary school, students salute, sing, and march in place as the national anthem plays over a loudspeaker. Many children now living in Damascus come from elsewhere and were displaced by the war. In the heart of the Old City (below) boys idly chase the pigeons that flock to the square outside the Umayyad Mosque.