Gathering reliable information on Syria, which remains off-limits to most journalists and human rights workers, remains a challenge. On Nov. 8, a spokesman for the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights said that more than 3,500 people had been killed in Syria since the unrest broke out in March.
The data used here was taken from the Violations Documenting Center in Syria, which is affiliated with the activist Local Coordination Committees inside the country. While different organizations’ data may vary slightly on a given day, the broad trends of the information are accurate, and provide a useful sense of how the revolt is evolving.
For a sense of scale, Foreign Policy looked at the Arab Spring uprisings and other violent protest movements. The death toll from Bahrain is taken from the Bahrain Center for Human Rights; the Tunisian death toll is an estimate from the U.N. special rapporteur; the Egyptian death toll is from an Egyptian fact-finding committee; the death toll for Israelis and Palestinians during the Second Intifada is from the Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem (and covers from September 2000 to January 2005); the death toll for U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan is taken from the independent casualty-counting website iCasualties; and the death toll estimate for the Libyan conflict is a range cited by U.S. Ambassador to Libya Gene Cretz.
Colum Lynch is Foreign Policy's award-winning U.N.-based senior diplomatic reporter. Lynch previously wrote Foreign Policy's Turtle Bay blog, for which he was awarded the 2011 National Magazine Award for best reporting in digital media. He is also a recipient of the 2013 Elizabeth Neuffer Memorial Silver Prize for his coverage of the United Nations.
Before moving to Foreign Policy, Lynch reported on diplomacy and national security for the Washington Post for more than a decade. As the Washington Post's United Nations reporter, Lynch had been involved in the paper's diplomatic coverage of crises in Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon, Sudan, and Somalia, as well as the nuclear standoffs with Iran and North Korea. He also played a key part in the Post's diplomatic reporting on the Iraq war, the International Criminal Court, the spread of weapons of mass destruction, and U.S. counterterrorism strategy. Lynch's enterprise reporting has explored the underside of international diplomacy. His investigations have uncovered a U.S. spying operation in Iraq, Dick Cheney's former company's financial links to Saddam Hussein, and documented numerous sexual misconduct and corruption scandals.
Lynch has appeared frequently on the Lehrer News Hour, MSNBC, NPR radio, and the BBC. He has also moderated public discussions on foreign policy, including interviews with Susan E. Rice, the U.S. National Security Advisor, Gerard Araud, France's U.N. ambassador, and other senior diplomatic leaders.
Born in Los Angeles, California, Lynch received a bachelor's degree from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1985 and a master's degree from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism in 1987. He previously worked for the Boston Globe.| Turtle Bay |