“Blood, Sweat and Tears”
The writer talks about their life changing experiences as they visit a country troubled by war
By: Fasih Taqvi
Date: 28 October 2019
How? Why? That’s what I thought to myself as I crossed the once shanty towns that had now burned to the ground. War I knew, was something not to take something lightly. But what I saw was something I could never prepare myself for. Horrors of such sorts that I thought never existed. Sights that have forever etched itself in my mind. But moving on, I will now tell you what I saw and how it changed my overall attitude towards life itself.
When I entered what was once the country’s capital all I saw were hundreds of lean, hungry, terrified faces all betrayed by their country and government. There was no life to be found. Yet if there was, it would be wound festering bodies, laying their helplessly, struggling with every breath they took. To weak to find food, to weak to find help. Despite how sick it sounds, the need for shocking material is like a another hit of morphine, each more nerve racking and brain shattering than before.
Conversely, there was a small village in the middle of nowhere, a place we had yet to reach. After a tedious 2 hour journey our group of journalists reached. The roads surrounding the area were unpaved dirt roads, untouched by mankind, preserved by nature. The first thing I saw there were a group of small girls huddled together. Their bodies were as thin as a stick, their skin as sunken in as a raisin. Death was around the corner for them. You could see it in their yellow eyes, you could detect it in the putrid air that surrounded them. But there was nothing that could be done, nothing you could do. These young girls, so fragile, had been robbed of all the happiness in the world only to pass away with a small whimper.
My reaction and attitude to everything that day was a mixture of fear, disgust and sorrow. I mean, without a doubt who wouldn’t be sickened by such terrors. Right? The revulsion to see nature taking it heed to themselves to decide the fate of others. Having to see living bodies slowly fading away is painful to watch. How could someone be so cruel? Who could treat another person in such a manner? That’s what I constantly thought to myself; and to see no international organization or source of foreign aid made me angry. You would be too.
Furthermore, to see humanity being lowered to such standards is appalling. To see that; along with the old woman I met, who had been unfortunately shot in the leg. It shook me to my core. It really illustrated how horrific war is. We can all go back to the comfort of our homes, whilst their suffering never ends. I felt pity, sympathy for them. From hearing the death of two young teens, Habiba and Ayesha, to the young man shot dead right dead in front of my eyes, those emotions never left my side. What was it that caused these feelings? That is something I might never answer.
As a result, this brings me to my final point. What did I learn? Well as one wise man said,” Life has so many great opportunities for everyone to experience and to learn in the best of ways.” Indeed, it reflected how if anything manifests itself in its purest form, whether it be war or peace, can change our perspective to life. Moreover, being there helped me to understand not everyone is born with a silver spoon in their mouth, not everyone gets the same opportunities I got. Finally, war taught me that actions has consequences; and as one person said, “Every action has a reaction.”
It connoted to me how careless actions of certain people can ruin the lives of others around them. So, what I observed there convinced me that I would share my story with all the purpose and power I had. War was a seminal, climatic moment for me as a journalist. To make the known unknown. To make sure that you guys, my dear audience, know what’s happening. So, I end my story on a high note and I hope you have been inspired by what has been said.