Kassem Eid grew up in the small town of Moadamiya on the outskirts of Damascus. He excelled at school, and had a natural gift for languages. But it didn't take long for Kassem to realise that he was treated differently at school because of his family's resistance to the brutal government regime. When the 2011 Arab Spring protests in Syria were met with extreme violence, it was yet another blow - and as Kassem reached young adulthood, life in Syria became intolerable. Then, on the 21st of August 2013, Kassem nearly died in a gas attack that killed hundreds of civilians. Later that day, he would pick up a gun and join the Free Syrian Army as they fought government forces.

My Country: A Syrian Memoir