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“You make eye contact. And he blows you away.”
When Reddit user bk533 posted a photo of a Free Syrian Army fighter carrying an rocket-propelled grenade and looking like a general badass to the social news site Tuesday, he or she didn’t intend for the soldier to become yet another new meme.
The redditor just wanted “this good looking bastard to get some attention in case he gets killed by an authoritative dictator using chemical weapons in a last ditch effort to hang onto what little semblance of power he has left.”
“All the ladies want him.
All the guys want to be him.
All the Syrian Army want to kill him.
Ridiculously Photogenic Rebel
in cinemas 2013.” —ceph3us
The name of the meme is a play off of a photo taken of 25-year-old Zeddie “Watkins” Little jogging during a marathon in March. The random photo of Little flashing a bright smile found its way to Reddit, where it exploded with image macros, unabashed bromancing, and eventually landed Little on Good Morning America.
“The good looking jogger guy will be around for probably 80 more years,” bk533 added. “This [Syrian] guy might not make it till Friday.”
The Syrian uprising has gripped the Middle East for over a year. In total, about 15,000 people have been killed in protests against President Bashar al-Assad and his regime.
The following is a Storify with some of the best illustrations of the Syrian to emerge thus far.
Photo remix by the_television
Fernando Alfonso III served as an early Reddit and 4chan reporter and the Daily Dot’s first art director until 2016. He’s gone on to report at Lexington’s Herald-Leader and at the Houston Chronicle.