Only once Western democracies have committed their resources to ending the atrocities in Syria can they turn inward to rid their societies of the hate and bigotry that plagues them.
By Ilan Manor
Words matter. Words help us understand the world we inhabit and shape our response to events far and near. Some refer to the events unfolding in Syria with the words “civil war.” These words, carefully selected by policymakers and politicians aim to prevent us from crying out against the atrocities in Aleppo and Homs.
Civil wars are internal matters. So why should the UK or the U.S. or France intervene in an internal matter? Civil wars are also, by nature, violent and bloody. They see brother pitted against brother, father pitted against son and national leaders pitted against their own people. So what are we to expect but more bloodshed and more anguish? Lastly, civil wars can culminate in the re-birth of nations, as was the case in England and America. So why should we act to end civil wars when they are but transitional moments in a greater plot?
Carnage. Slaughter. These are words that more amply describe that which is occurring in Syria. A madman is throwing barrels of fire from the sky. A fanatical movement in enslaving women and beheading young men and an army devoid of reason is starving its own population by bombing aid conveys making their way to besieged cities.
And the enlightened world watches in apathy and boredom. Its leaders stand on the world stage and proclaim their commitment to end the carnage and slaughter. Yet only from the sky and only from high altitudes.
The problem with high altitudes is that from such heights all men seem like ants and all misery remains hidden.
By allowing this onslaught to continue for more than four years, Western democracies such as the UK, France and the U.S. have reached the final stop in what has been decade long journey — a journey that has seen these nations abandon their moral compass. Life, liberty, and equality are now but slogans carved in stone atop national assemblies or written on the back of bank notes.
It should not be surprising that these are the very countries that have witnessed the emergence of isolationism, populism, xenophobia and Trumpism, for nations that abandon their morals abroad will soon find these moral contested at home. The road to Brexit...Read More