A Picture, Worth a Thousand Worlds!

Seven years have passed, yet war hasn’t stopped knocking on Syria’s door. Houses went down turning the country into a land of ghost towns. Children were orphaned, and parents were left mourning the death of their beloved ones.

The devastation that Syria has endured since 2011 was not enough to trigger the humanity of those who could help, until a painful image of the unseen truth mediated on the Internet for the whole world to see. It was none other than the picture of Aylan KURDI, a three-year-old asylum-seeking refugee, washed up on the shore by the waves of a mad ocean… motionless, dead!

It was only then that European countries opened their doors to the significantly increasing influx of refugees coming in from Syria and hoping to find peace on another land. And even though the rise of The Arab Spring resulted in the revolutionary changes of the regime in countries such as Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya, it has, however, turned the lives of Syrians into a living hell, with nothing but the image of a seeked freedom at an unknown horizon, dangerously deflatable rubber dinghies, and death.

In other words their arrival to some of Europe’s countries was not a joyful event to eyes that saw refugees as a threat, bombers, terrorists, and job opportunity thieves. And as a result to this irrational vision, countries such as the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland built a wall, similar to the one Trump wanted to rise between America and Mexico, a virtual wall of greed, racism, discrimination, and inhumanity. It was as if Europeans looked at Syrians through a lens of so-called fear, whereas Syrians, humiliated and deprived of their pride and dignity, could not even dare to look at Europeans, fearing bullying, harmful looks, and bullets that were not made of metal or steel but of words; heartless, cold, and lethal words.

Had it been the other way around, what would’ve happened? Can the world not forget that Lebanon, a country that had endured a violent and notoriously bloody war against Syria, was one of the first to take them in, set camps for them, and lend them the helping hand? How can selfishness replace humanity? How can humans replace their humanity with inhumanity?

It’s sad that nowadays, the world only revolves around social media, and the humanity of so many is triggered by a simple picture such as the screen turned on by a button. What makes this even worse is that populations are trying hard to save their own lands by letting go of their humanity and declaring themselves “People of That Nation” instead of “Children of This World”.

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