In revolution, the camera becomes a weapon no less important than any other. The camera puts its photographer in danger of being arrested or shot by snipers. One of the most famous photographs from the Syrian revolution is an image of a camera lying in a pool of its martyred photographer’s blood.
Photography plays a significant role in the revolution, as it has circumvented the regime’s media policy since demonstrations began. The regime’s policy is based on three elements: blocking the media from conflict zones, monopolization of information by security forces so that nothing unauthorized is disclosed, and reiteration of one specific perspective to prevent the emergence of new and different ones.
The eyewitness was the first breach of this policy, but the photograph would soon after communicate what speech could not: tangible, visual documentation. Hundreds of words could never fully convey the destruction in devastated cities. Likewise words could never adequately express the poignant image of a child lamenting his or her family.
The role of photography isn’t limited by its function in the media; many professional photographers engage in the fine arts. These photographers use outstanding artistic techniques to express the revolution and its defining moments.