“i am sorry this world
could not keep you safe,
may your journey home
be a soft and peaceful one” – rupi kaur.
273 innocent lives have been lost in Turkey in the last 12 months.
This morning, we woke up mourning another tragic attack. On June 28th, 3 attackers opened fire and bombed Istanbul Ataturk Airport, killing 41 and injuring 239. This comes as the eighth attack in Turkey in the last year.
And like every other attack, when I woke up this morning, the attack was unspoken of. Only my Turkish friends were mourning the innocent lives that were taken. We were all Paris, we were all Brussels, we were all Orlando… but no one wants to be Istanbul.
In the past I blamed this on media exposure and the lack of information. But the Istanbul airport attack was the only thing on CNN or BBC all night, and it was the number one trending topic on Facebook and Twitter, but still, no one called, no one asked. And it wasn’t because they didn’t know.
It was because they didn’t care.
My best friend, Yasemin, posted a status on Facebook saying:
“…I am offended that you don’t care about my country. I am offended that you don’t care that yesterday, 41 innocent lives have been lost, and countless more will follow from the 239 injured. I am offended that you stand by Western countries when they are attacked, but you don’t stand by me. I am and will continue to be offended, but the saddest part is that we Turks have gotten used to it. We’ve gotten used to not being cared about as much as other nations. Doesn’t this sound so wrong? That some lives are worth more than others?”
And I could not agree with her more.
I woke up this morning with my heart irreparably broken. Disappointed, and devastated. Praying for Turkey. Praying for humanity in a world where attacks like this are frequent and expected, and where some lives simply don’t matter.
At what point did we decide that one life was worth more than another?
The people who have died in these attacks were brothers, sisters, girlfriends, daughters, husbands, mothers, fathers; they were people’s families and loved ones. Their lives matter. Or at least they should. Except it seems that, to most of the world, they don’t.
Imagine your country being attacked 8 times in the last 12 months.
28 June 2016 – Istanbul, 41 dead, 239 wounded
7 June 2016 – Istanbul, 12 dead, 51 wounded
19 March 2016 – Istanbul, 5 dead, 36 wounded
13 March 2016 – Ankara, 37 dead, 125 wounded
17 February 2016 – Ankara, 29 dead, 61 wounded
12 January 2016 – Istanbul, 13 dead, 14 wounded
10 October 2015 – Ankara, 107 dead, 400+ wounded
20 July 2015 – Suruc, 34 dead, 104 wounded
Imagine all the heartbreak, the sadness, the destruction.
Imagine all the lives lost.
The families mourning.
The lives that are changed forever.
Now imagine that no one cares.