As U.S. lawmakers and leaders from around the world continue to weigh in on possible retaliatory strike against the Syrian government for its reported use of chemical weapons on civilians, images posted on President Bashar Assad's Instagram feed show no signs of an impending crisis.
Among the most recent photos uploaded in Damascus, were pictures of Assad meeting with a group of professors and academics who trained the Syrian Scientific Team for an international competition and Assad shaking hands with Syrian troops.
There are also pictures of Assad's British-born wife, Asma, posing with Syria's top students in the National Baccalaureate and serving food to "internally displaced families."
Assad began using the three-year-old photo sharing service early last month, apparently to help create an image of a normalcy and compassion even as the country is being torn apart by civil war. He already had a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and a YouTube channel as well.
"These are all dismal and useless attempts at polishing up his image," Mamdouh, a Syrian activist based in the northern province of Idlib, told The New York Daily News
"I wish he would turn his attention to more important things, such as saving the country," he added Mamdouh, who refused to give his last name to the newspaper for fear of reprisals.
Some of the explicit comments by Instagram users tended to agree with Mamdouh's take on the Syrian crisis.
"Crazy s*** how you act like nothing is happening!" wrote one in response to the Assad regime's postings.
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