Monday, June 4, 2012

H-U-M-A-N: Syrian tragedy

I have been watching the news about Syria.  Well, let me amend that, I have been listening and closing my eyes -- literally.  I cannot watch. I have children and there are certain things I cannot see without breaking down, because I see my children in the place of the dead or dying children on the screen. 

Now, President Assad is claiming that crackdown and massacre of over 100 people including children is similar to a "surgeon" who's just not neat.  !?!?!

"When a surgeon in an operating room ... cuts and cleans and amputates, and the wound bleeds, do we say to him your hands are stained with blood?" Assad said in a televised speech to parliament. "Or do we thank him for saving the patient?"

Saving the patient?!?! What kind of sadistic Mutha F---- is this?!?! The killing of tens of thousands of people is just like an intern in an emergency room trying to save a critically ill patient?!?!  If that is how you "save" a country, I think I would just want to try my chances with a a tablespoon of Robotussin.  Is he serious?!

More importantly, what are we going to do? The world is paralyzed because frankly, America is tired of war. We as a nation want to take the "S" off our chest and hand over our cape and tights to another country for a minute. The rest of the world is saying, we too are tired and if the US doesn't lead, we aren't gonna do anything either.  American's have war fatigue: one finally finished in Iraq, one winding down after 10 years in Afganistan, and one short, undeclared war in Libya. The Houla massacre, though brutal and awful, is just another in a long line of killings perpetrated by the Assad regime for the past 15 months. People were killed BEFORE when the demonstrations were entirely peaceful.  No one responded then either.

I wrote H-U-M-A-N because I was thinking about who gets access to full "human rights" - us or them? Rich or poor? Sick or healthy? First world or third? Who decides which set of human beings are ok to live and prosper? What factors go into making that decision? We Americans see death and destruction on large and small scales. In the Iraq war nearly 5000 american soldiers were killed, but hundreds of THOUSANDS of Iraqis were killed.  How do we justify our lack of feeling of scale? Is one American death equal to 100 non-American deaths because that's the way it seemed in news coverage and subsequent public response?

Are the Syrian people less deserving of rescue than the Bosnians, the Libyans, the Afganis….anyone?!  I understand that this is a very complicated situation politically, economically, and militarily for the US, but who deserves help? Who deserves to be treated like a human, and what does that mean….

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