'A sacrificed generation': the grim daily life of Syria's rebel brigades

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French sociologist Romain Huët has spent two years studying the lives of the fighters among the hundreds of small brigades that are part of the Syrian opposition movement fighting, against all odds, the regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. Huët has travelled four times to northern Syria where he shared the daily lives of the fighters, who are separate to the Islamic State or the al-Nusra Front but who are devout proponents of an Islamic republic. In this interview with Thomas Cantaloube, he offers a rare insight into the daily horrors of the three-year civil war and profiles these young rebels who, he says, have been transformed from revolutionaries into hardened warriors and who have largely lost the notion of both what was the past and the promise of the future.

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In 2012, Romain Huët, a lecturer in communication sciences at the University of Rennes in western France, set off for Syria for the first of what would become four visits, the last being in September this year, where he studied and shared the daily lives of groups of fighters in the Syrian opposition movement.