The American Interest
The Middle East & Beyond
Published on February 27, 2013
Map Humor

In the February 24th Washington Post, in accompaniment to an article by Karen DeYoung and Elizabeth Sly entitled “In Syria, new influx of weapons to rebels tilts the battle against Assad”, there appeared a genuinely hilarious map. I laughed so hard I nearly dropped my morning bagel. Here it is:

Knowing a little bit about how newspapers operate, I am reasonably sure that the authors of the article had nothing to do with the map, and probably saw it only when they saw their story laid out for public consumption.
Obviously, humor is a relative thing. In this case, it is relative to what a person knows about Syria.  Now here is a population density map of Syria, which I was able to find in about ten seconds on the internet:

You will see the “fit”, nearly exact, right away. Inescapable conclusion: There are areas of conflict in Syria wherever there are people. Well like duh, Washington Post editor dudes. Not many people live in the vastness of the Syrian desert… go figure.
If you don’t think this is funny, well, as I say, humor is highly idiosyncratic. I count myself fortunate that a laugh has little difficulty attaching itself to my smile.