Three years ago, your were born .. Little Aylan Kurdi.
You were born on a land known for its generous people, for its rich culture, for its beautiful nature.. Brown eyes, brown hair, little brother to Galip, son to Abdullah and Rehan. You never saw the land we called Syria, you never felt that fresh breeze brushing off the Syrian mountains and the smell of the Mediterranean coast on a hot summer day. You never heard the numerous stories about your ancestors, about the generosity of your people, you never tasted the incredibly delicious shami cuisine.
Instead, you were born in the midst of a vicious cycle of violence, a bloody civil war. You saw nothing but human hatred.. you felt nothing but fear… you smelt nothing but blood.. you heard nothing but the brutal sound of killing … you tasted nothing but betrayal and revenge.
Syria, Oh Syria… What has happened to you ? We grew up learning about your rich history .. We grew up listening to stories about your educated, hard-working citizens.. we grew up watching your shows… Watching you vanish into rubble, watching your thousands of years of history disappear, watching your people being called ‘refugees’ and ‘asylum seekers’ walking bare foot in foreign countries aches my heart.. And for what reason? Who is responsible for this? Who is benefitting from this?
Little Aylan, your picture defines the human catastrophe we live in today.. You were neglected, you were abandoned and forgotten.. And for that I have no words to describe to you how sorry I am, how much I wish I could have held you in my arms just as I hold my own children .. I wish I could have blocked away the sound of bombs dropping around you.. Ya habibi, how I wish I could have caught you when you slipped away from your father’s arms into the cold and bitter sea ..
Little Aylan, washed ashore off of the Mediterranean, you drowned while we drowned in tears and shame for the state that we as humans have reached. How could we have watched you drown while we sat on our comfortable couches, how could we have seen your innocence stripped away from you like that?
Little Aylan, your father risked his life to cross the sees and bring you to safety after the world washed their hands from your problem and pretended your problem is not theirs… Today he goes back to the very same place he escaped from, alone, empty handed, broken hearted, to burry you, your brother and your mother.. The sea was just as cruel as the land..
Little Aylan, you are the symbol of today’s inhumane crisis… You are the Handala of the Syrian people.. You are our consciousness that has died.. You are our dignity that we gave up .. You are the innocent scream of thousands that have drowned in the Mediterranean trying to escape .. You are the cry for freedom.. you are my child…
You are Aylan Kurdi, the three year old that drowned, searching for safety.. You are not just another refugee..
No.. You are Aylan Kurdi ..