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Never forget - try to forgive
by Thanos Kalamidas
2011-09-11 09:16:37
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After been away for a while I was checking one of the usual social networks to see how my friends all around the world are doing and looking at their news I spotted one of them quoting words of Allah. The first thing it was a small red light that started flashing in the back of my mind, an alarm that it wasn’t the first time it had been flashing. The second thought immediately after the light started flashing was that the next time I talk with this friend to tell him that perhaps he should be more careful. The third thing that came stronger than any other is what a lot of stupid thoughts I have but the fact is that they were there and this is what Bin Laden has done to al of us and it is like twin towers are bombed inside our lives day after day for ten years now.

The certain person is a very nice; a very kind man that always enjoyed his company and our conversations about literature and life and religion has never become an issue me always knowing that he’s a Muslim and him always knowing that I’m an atheist. But here it was years after I first met him and years after socializing with him a new barrier appeared that we didn’t even put it or bothered with it for all the time we know each other.

The days to come there are going to be a lot of articles for the ten year anniversary and a lot of them will talk about all the things we lost or sacrificed defending ourselves from this new enemy that has hit the core of our society and we will all remember the day it happened. We will all remember for the rest of our lives the televised scenes and we will all remember the screams and the tears. Actually the media for all these years have manage to show us the most human side of the most inhuman act and they made sure that we will never forget. And we won’t but we must start working on forgiving. And forgiving Bin Laden is out from our hands any more but forgiving the prejudice that have overwhelmed us the last decade there is time and we have to do something about it soon.

There will be articles about the things we lost during those ten years including freedoms we sacrificed in order to defend our world from this ruthless enemy and I do agree that we have sacrificed things we actually pride of. We sometimes have voluntarily sacrificed what makes us different from all those messengers of terror and dangerously we have even touched the principal fundamentals of our democratic society. Still what has happened to our minds and our souls is much worst. Even the most progressive parts of our society feel this red alarm light flashing in the back of their mind sometimes and it is tragic because by definition it always flashes the wrong time for the wrong reason.

My father often used to say –and that was over thirty years ago – how easy it would have been if all the murderers, the paedophiles and the criminals in general were dirty men with one eye, wooden leg and a hook for hand but unfortunately most of them wear smart suits, have nice houses even nice families as background and they look just like us. Bin laden was NOT representing Islam and Islam is definitely NOT what Bin Laden represented and the same applies to Anders Breivik the Norwegian murderer and his Christian roots that he proudly promoted.

For the end I just hope my Muslim friend can forget my idiotic alarm flashes and work with me to wipe out all the prejudice terrorism has plant inside our souls and hearts without ever forgetting our dead.

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