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One Very Protracted Ordeal

Rightfully, our compassion tends to be with the victims of recent natural disasters, earthquakes, the civil disturbances in North Africa and the unrest in the Arab world and, lately, the tsunami and its subsequent radioactive contamination. Of course it is good that we are compassionate.

Sadly, though, compassion tends to have a short shelf life. Whilst we were emotionally involved with the dead and maimed victims of the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia, our attention quickly turned to the hundreds of casualties of the Egyptian Revolution, to be quickly replaced by our disquiet over brutal violations of Human Rights during the Libyan uprising at the hands of Moammar Gadhafi’s forces. Thankfully, we don’t have to take sides where Japan’s woes are concerned. The images of that deadly big wave will be engraved on our minds for, well, as long as it is until the next calamity takes place, sometime, somewhere, someplace.

At the same time our compassionate memories do not tend to reach back to the protracted ordeals that some peoples have been suffering for a much longer period of time. That of the Palestinian people for instance, or of the Western Saharan people. Representatives of the Poble Sahrauí (Western Sahara refugees) aim to remind us these days in Palma’s Passeig des Born of their plight which began in 1975 when Spain decided to pull out of the former Spanish Morocco and divested itself of its former colony. Some compassionate action would be needed, somehow, by Spain and rather, by all of us. If you can make it to Palma, go and sign up for some moral support, now. In exchange, you’ll be offered a glass of tea for your act of sympathy. And Japan will not suffer any more for your act of conscience, here and now. Thank you.

The photo was taken in Palma de Mallorca, Baleares, Spain. The date: March 15th, 2011. The time was 15:19:59.

1 reply »

  1. Good of you to remind people to consider the Palestinians as well as those of the Western Sahara (a subject, I’m afraid, I know nothing about). When I discuss the situation of Palestinian families I try to do so without mentioning Arab/Jew or Jew/Arab. I try to do so by simply by raising the subject of people disregarding the comfort of other people. As a tourist, I visited Gaza and Hebron and everyone I met was charming in the face of a terrible existence. All they wanted was food on the table and their children to be educated, their elderly parents to be safe etc., etc. Of course, it’s naive to expect people to not think in religious terms on this subject, but somehow we have to. People shouldn’t treat others with such disrespect.
    Very busy at work but having taken a few minutes to rush out this note, I will take more time to find out about the people of the Western Sahara.

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