Hallowed soul on hollow earth

by Adel Ahmed

023Fatherhood is the greatest gift that a man can have in this world. Nothing compares to the feeling when a man holds his offspring for the first time and gaze into the eyes of his newborn child. So, it’s natural to have all those instincts, built in, to protect, nurture, raise and have the best interest in one’s heart regarding one’s child.
Aylan’s father, Abdullah Kurdi was no different from the next man. He wanted to have the best for his family, he wanted to raise his sons in a land, free of strife and terror. Unfortunately, that was not going to be the case. He was from a land that was torn and broken with civil war and ruled by terror groups. So, he tried to escape his fate and took his family from Syria to Turkey and from there to the Greek Island of Kos.
Their ultimate destination was Canada through Europe. However, fate was not so kind to Aylan and his family. While travelling to Kos, their boat capsized and the three year old toddler Aylan, his five year old brother Galip and their mother Rehan all drowned. In one single cruel twist his entire family perished and his father Abdullah was the only survivor. Abdullah’s only wish now is to return to Kobane, Syria and bury his family – and then be buried alongside them, according to his family in Vancouver.
Nothing in life is more tragic than to see your sons and family die and you are left to bury them in the cold, unforgiving earth. Nothing is colder than to return to an empty home, void of warmth and laughter and constantly be haunted by echoes that are ghosts of a weeping past. Such is the fate of Abdullah.
024The world is in a flux and many parts of the world, especially the middle-east has been the crucible of too many tragedies. Aylan Kurdi and his family are not the only casualty, there will be many more sad and tragic deaths, if the world and its leaders don’t change their attitude and if they don’t get back in touch with their basic humanity.
The sad truth is, Aylan and his brother did not need to die such pointless deaths, they could have lived, gone to Canada and grown up to be strong men and maybe one day have their own family. This would have been possible if UN had not refused to register them as refugees. If Canada and Turkey were not at loggerheads over the bottleneck blocking Syrian refugees in Turkey from finding their way to Canada. If Turkish government had not refused to give them exit visa because they were unregistered refugees with no valid passport.
There are too many if’s that we can think of but the fact of the matter is Aylan and his family needed to die. We all know and hear about the tragedies taking place and thousands of refugees being stranded and refused asylum. We know their plights and can imagine their hardships, but we still needed to see the body of the three year old wash ashore, dead and lifeless, before we could acknowledge our collective conscience.
Aylan needed to die for the world to start talking about the plights of the Syrians and other refugees all over the world. Aylan needed to die before Europe would open their gates and welcome the refugees with open arms. Aylan needed to die and that image had to burn a hole in our psyche before we could cry for him.
Through his death, Aylan has left us with a gift. He has given us back our humanity and maybe has shown us the way back to righteousness. Maybe, now we will finally rise up and break the shackles of indifference and apathy that binds us and create a world where children like Aylan can grow up and live a life to its fullest.

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