A Letter to the Children of Syria

You are ours too and we belong to each other and to the earth and to all the stars in the universe. Sadly, not all of us here know that, some people think we are strangers even though it is so easy to make friends with children just like you.

War becomes a kinaesthetic experience. I feel the bombs dropping in and around my body.

Does this insult you? I speak metaphorically when it is actually you who gets the literal experience. Your tiny body is where the bombs explode.

I try to express my empathy with you and I want you to know if I were there I would cover your body with mine as a shield.

I have nightmares about nuclear bombs and surviving. I am unlucky enough to live through the agony and suffering of nuclear fall out. In the dream I am covered in a toxic ash, like from an Icelandic volcano eruption.

Somehow we are all responsible for the decision in parliament today. The lucky ones (in my dream), were vapourised at ground zero, but not me, I got covered in the post apocalyptic guilt, where the cliché ‘it seemed like a good idea at the time’, ‘simply does not cut it’ and I am so sorry, really sorry for endangering your life with the metal of the British Empire and an old historical document signed by the United Nation before you were even born. It was signed before we could even conceptualise the kind of terrorism that exists today with Daesh.

You can not understand why your street and house and possibly school must be dessimated. I am not even sure if you will ever recover from the military action. I can only ask that you forgive us our trespasses. As indeed we should forgive too, only forgiveness is not profitable. Forgiveness is for fools.

I want you to know I abhor any decision founded by profit that hurts you. I apologise for the men in power who immorally profit from war. I am sorry that we didn’t ask for a peace agreement first and I am so sorry that we didn’t sanction the countries selling arms to the extremists with whom you have a civil war.

We mean well. We aim to create a safer world. Sadly I believe we are misguided. If you grow up with hatred in your heart then we are to blame too and history has even more reason to repeat itself, again and again.

Tonight I apologise to the people of Syria, to your mothers and fathers, aunts and uncles, grandparents, because I believe the air strikes will not make them safe and perhaps the only consolation, is that it will not make any of us safe and this pitiful offer, is all the solace I have to offer you right now.

A miserable attempt a Solidarity, becuse I will wake up from my nightmares, whereas you are living in one right now.

Writing this here is all the power I have to say that I truly hope peace will prevail and I am truly sorry for the violence we are subjecting you to. Your young life is very precious and I am sorry that my government has not found another way.

Please forgive us.


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