This blog is intended to go along with Population: An Introduction to Concepts and Issues, by John R. Weeks, published by Cengage Learning. The latest edition is the 13th (it will be out in January 2020), but this blog is meant to complement any edition of the book by showing the way in which demographic issues are regularly in the news.

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Deaths Continue to Mount in Syria

Media attention in the Middle East has recently focused especially on ISIS and its brutal murder of an American journalist, attempted genocide of the Yazidis in northern Iraq, among many other atrocities. All this time, however, people also continue to die in Syria. The United Nations estimated this week that nearly 200,000 people have died in the Syrian conflict. Of course, millions more are now refugees. Richard Engel of NBC News, who was himself kidnapped for a few days in Syria, was talking this evening about the fact that life in Syria is simply awful. Furthermore, even if the conflict ended today, it is not clear what kind of society would emerge in these places. The very rapid population growth in this part of the world--despite death and hardship--assures that a lot of people are going to be in a huge need of assistance for a long time to come. Engel's point was that no one seems to have yet given much thought to that future. At the moment, the demographic picture suggests a young population, with relatively limited educational attainment and few resources upon which to build. 


  1. In other words ... the demographics suggest that Syria is am IDEAL breeding ground for new social movements (i.e. terrorist groups) which are more sociopathic than anything we have seen before. And really - isnt that exactly what ISIS is? It's all very well for Americans to open the pages of their newspapers (proverbially speaking) and be shocked about a beheading. But Syria has devolved into a horrow show of human rights atrocities over sevral years - and th world barely lifted a finger. So who are we kidding??

    Dr P, Redondo Beach

    1. Yes, regrettably, that is my conclusion, as well.