Source: (2014) Georgetown Journal of International Law. 45:557-587.

Speculation has swarmed regarding prospects for transitional justice in Syria, and international actors have been particularly insistent on the need for international criminal courts to hold the Asad regime and opposition militant groups accountable for the human rights violations and war crimes they are committing on a near daily basis. These early calls for accountability in Syia often presuppose that the conflict is sectarian in nature, rendering the Syians hopelessly divided by religion and ethnicity and in need of international assistance to bring about justice and reconciliation in their society. The historical experiences of Iraq and Lebanon caution against such a presupposition. They demonstrate how the fusing of sectarian discourse and international justice schemes has politicized international trials and entrenched ethno-religious divisions. In the Syrian context, this fusing obscures the political motivations of international actors, plays into the hands of the Asad regime's sectarian narrative, and ignores the non-violent democratic activism that underlies the Syrian uprising. While the appropriatet ransitionalju stice mechanism for Spia is a decision for Syrians to make, this Note posits that truth-telling informed by religion can play a role in fostering reconciliation and accountable governance in the Syria of tomorrow. (author's abstract)