I have to admit, first of all, I have been half-paying attention to the escalating situation in Syria. A lot of foreign affairs are far beyond my grasp (for whatever reason, I'm a reasonably intelligent girl) so I just don't even try to follow them. I are American. I shop at Wal-Mart sometimes (sometimes).
But it's been getting enough exposure on the news- whatever news pond I choose to drink from*, that it's really become impossible for me to ignore. And it should be impossible for you- or anyone checking this website from whatever cushy pad they happen to be in- to ignore, as well. YES, gas prices are going up. YES, Whitney Houston is very dead ( :/ ). Yes, every Republican candidate is....WELL LET'S NOT OPEN THAT CAN OF WARMS (Sarah Palin: why aren't you running? you were, at best, gently alarming...or naturally amusing!) But Syria has as every right to be as important as any of these topics, possibly even moreso.
In a nutshell: as has been happening in the recent past, the people of Syria (a select division of them, I should say) are rising up against their government. The opposition. And what is the government doing? Why, killing them, in response. Shelling homes where women and children are hiding.
The president of Syria is this dude. Yes he's ugly; that is besides the point.
Did I mention Syria's biggest ally is Russia? ...
SO. In this conflicts so far, there's been an unfortunate amount of journalist casualties. In addition to the countless other civilian deaths....it's troubling, very troubling. And also troubling we seem to be turning a blind eye to the chaos in question, which will ONLY GET WORSE.
The latest journalists to fall in this have included Marie Colvin, the American foreign correspondent for the British Sunday Times, as well as French photojournalist Remi Ochlik. They were killed during a shelling in the city of Homs. Do you see that eyepatch? That is another war injury. This woman was TOUGH and she didn't back down. To me, she really is the definition of a journalist. Sure some people would call her (and the other journalists in such zones) "foolish" but she was quite the opposite of that. She knew what she was doing and she needed to do it.
I don't consider myself a journalist really....this woman was a journalist. She died among the people she was trying to bring to the world's attention: women and children caught in the conflict.
Hopefully, the deaths of her and others just as brave (New York Times reporter Anthony Shadid) will help send some desperately needed spotlight on what's going on in Syria. And hopefully, and perhaps this is an iota of idealism*, something potentially like "good" will come of it.
(and you have to wonder, at what price?)
SO! educate yourself. pay attention, and not to any of the unoriginal ideas stumbling out of Mitt Romney's mouth or scary ideologies being spurted by Rick Santorum.
RIP, Marie and Remi.
* bad metaphor 1
* bad alliteration 1
"I watched a little baby die today, absolutely horrific, a two year old - found the shrapnel had gone into the left chest and the doctor said: 'I can't do anything,' and his little tummy just kept heaving until he died. That is happening over and over and over." - Marie Colvin