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In Damascus, Syrians express a surprising level of optimism

In Damascus, Syrians express a surprising level of optimism

Amid the din of Hamidiya market, Isahak Kraymeen took a break from slinging cups of tamarind juice from a magic lantern-style brass cooler to reflect on the future of his wounded homeland.

"I have hope now that a new sun will soon rise to cover all the destruction," declared the juice man, decked out in a red fez and ballooned pants, a throwback to a time when tourists thronged the storied souk and posed for snapshots with the Ottoman-era-like figure.

Across Old Damascus, in the labyrinthine alleys of the Bab Touma district, Juman Edilbi said he sensed rising confidence among fellow residents of the Syrian capital.

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