Are they different? - The case of Turkey and Iraq
Reading the news during the last few days, I saw in an article saying “In just over one year, almost 300 people have died in 17 bomb attacks and suicide bombings all over the country, and more than 1,000 have been injured”, while in another case just by accident i see in social media a video about a "bombing that killed more than 200". Without seeing the article or reading about today's bombing (04/07/16) I would say, “It is impossible, I would have seen it, heard about it somewhere in the news. Where can this happen and I am not aware of it?” The answer is easy. Not that far away. The place that is neglected of information by international media is Middle East and in this case Turkey and Iraq. Of course, someone might say. It is not Europe, "it’s far", they lack of democracy, protection of human rights. But what about human lives?
Indeed lives are important, but as it seems, also where those people live is important for some. #JeSuisParis or #JeSuisBXL, but where is #JeSuisIstanbul and #JeSuisBaghdad? Was it because of location, the form of terrorism, Russian Warlord / Chechen (case of Turkey) that makes it different? As Matt Ayton says in one article, “We are conditioned to feel content with a tepid reaction from our political leaders to atrocities in Turkey and the Middle East” asking why are things different when it comes to Turkey or even Iraq.
As a young person and activist, I feel the pain no matter where it comes from. This year, without having the need to, I became French, Belgian, Iraqi and even if it is hard to say -due to my “nationality”- I became Turkish as well. Labels are easy to put and easy to manipulate as well. People labeled Turkey and criticize the country for sharing hate and being non-democratic, while at the same time, I see Islamophobia, xenophobia and hate raise all over Europe and even the world. Don’t get me wrong. What they are saying is true, as I get to see and experience it. However, what about the people. What about the humans who live in Turkey, Iraq or other countires which have experienced terrorsism like Lebanon. What about them. Where is the solidarity towards these people. Seeing Turkey, as the closest of the region, we need to realize that people who live in this non-democratic country, are people who experience this hate every day and also get to experience terrorism and fear. Are they lower class humans? I experienced terrorism and as a human the only thing I can say is that fear is a feeling which is common to all humans.
As all this hate raise, we dehumanized ourselves. We became aliens to our own kind. We tend to pre-assume and make up our minds based on labels, forgetting the person behind. Orlando proved us that this is wrong. Behind that #LGBTI+ label, they were brothers, sisters, family and friends that the world came close to. This is the time that we are called to do the same. Act as our time calls us to. Reach a country that is in need, not for the country or its’ regime, but for the people. At end, I only worry about the people. People are the ones that keep any country alive. Bad or good, no matter as we label them, they are worth to live. To learn and become better as we did. And this time is the time that we have to remember. Turkey and Iraq were, are and will not be different. Middle East is not different. We will stand next to them after the attack and we will fight with people there to change things for better. It is not a different battle. It is the same, no matter the nation, the religion or anything else. The battle to make the world a better place for all, a world which protects humans and assures their rights.
“Diversity is what makes this world a beautiful place. Diversity is what makes humanity interesting. Those people who created those vicious attacks, those acts of terrorism; those people represent themselves, they do not represent a religion.” Macklemore
#JeSuisInstabul #JeSuisBaghdad and as some shared #JeSuisTiredofallthis.