We are in Sagaponack, NY. Nina, Leo and Mia went to see the Southampton 4th of July parade. I am sick in bed with a bad summer flu.  I stayed in bed watching a Game of Thrones marathon. I am on Season 2 Episode 4. I almost never watch TV but I do enjoy TV series.  I watch them mostly during flights off my iPad. And now because I am sick and can’t stop coughing I watch them in bed.  By now, I have probably watched over 10 hours of Game of Thrones over the last 3 days. 

Game of Thrones has a great deal of sex and people talk about that, but sex is nothing compared to the amount of violence it depicts. A violence that it is at the limit of what I can stomach, as when they kill a baby off a woman’s arm. But the story is good and I am hooked. At this point anything that makes me forget my flu is welcome. Still, I suffer as I watch the most violent scenes. When I watch these horrors, I remember the child in myself saying, this is just a movie, this is just a movie.  But then, during a break I read the news. The real news.  And I see this.  A very Game of Thrones real life story going on right now in Syria as Bashar Al Assad tries to stay on his throne and goes on a killing rampage. Reuters reports.

Video clips showed rotting corpses lying in dried pools of blood in dark hallways, their faces covered with flies. One showed a woman and her child prone in a living room. The activist narrating the video said they had been stabbed.

A third video displayed pieces of charred flesh which activists said were severed genitals.

“There was more here yesterday,” said a man wearing plastic gloves.” “But the dogs were taking them.”

So now my defenses stopped working.  I think about what is going on in Syria, a country I visited in 2003 and found it quite attractive.  Here are my pictures of that trip. I can’t imagine how those who appear in them are doing now in this horrible civil war.  Why would Bashar al Assad, a man who trained to be an ophtalmologist in London and his wife Asma al-Assad who was born and raised in the UK and has a degree in computer science go on murder rampages to stay in power?

There is still a lot of Game of Thrones around us. The middle ages are still here.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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