Author: Sarah Aziza

Sarah Aziza is an Arab-American writer, graduate student and activist based in NYC. She has previously worked among refugee populations in North Africa, Jordan and the West Bank. Her areas of focus include immigration, human rights, international politics, feminism and mental health. She is a lover of the story-less-told. Find her on Twitter @SarahAziza1 or

A courageous Syrian collective challenges both ISIS and Assad in Raqqa


Just hours after Secretary of Defense Ash Carter announced that the United States is preparing to launch an offensive against the Syrian city of Raqqa, Abdalaziz Alhamza, a 25-year-old Raqqa native, spoke to a New York City audience about his hometown. Before the Islamic State captured the city in 2014, he recalled, few people outside of Syria had heard of Raqqa, “but now, most people hear about our city as the capital of ISIS.” Alhamza, an activist-journalist and founding member of the resistance group Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently, or RBSS, has risked his life for the past several years in order to tell a different story. “Almost no one there has joined ISIS. We should be known as the capital of resistance.”