Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Counting our blessings after the Boston bombing

Every time there's a major attack of some kind in America, whether it be 9/11, or Newtown, or yesterday's bombing in Boston, we as a nation are instantly traumatized. We personalize it, as if it had happened to us no matter how remote our connection. Not to minimize the tragedy of the these events, but these are small horrors in the greater world.

In the Middle East this sort of violence is part of their "normal" lives. I mean, while we were all glued to the media yesterday, watching in disbelief, this was happening in Iraq:
Officials said more than 30 bombings and a shooting hit 12 different areas of Iraq, leaving 50 people dead and nearly 300 injured, making Monday the country's deadliest day since March 19.

The deadliest attacks were in Baghdad, where eight bombings struck in seven neighbourhoods across the capital despite tougher checkpoint searches and heightened security.

Among them was a car bomb in a parking area used by vehicles making their way to Baghdad's heavily guarded airport, a rare bombing on the road famously known as "Route Irish".

In Tuz Khurmatu, 175 kilometres north of Baghdad, six people were killed and 67 wounded by three near-simultaneous car bombs, and in Kirkuk, five people were killed and 44 wounded by six more car bombs.

Attacks elsewhere killed nine people and wounded 92 others.

A total of 14 election hopefuls have already been murdered and just 12 of the country's 18 provinces will be taking part in this weekend's vote.
The worst part is, for Iraqis, this is an improvement over the years of terror they suffered during the war when the stench of death was never absent from the streets, not for a single day. These horrors happen to innocent men, women and children regularly, all over the world. So while we obsess over our own trauma about the senseless violence in Copley Square, we might also take a moment to remember how lucky we are that it doesn't happen more often.

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