January 8, 2015

Shocked to the core

France is respecting a National day of mourning today in honour of the 10 journalists and 2 policemen who were killed yesterday at their work place of a satirical newspaper.

The Parisians are in shock and horrified that the pillar of their Nation's motto "Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité" has been rattled to the core. The terrorist attack, on the newspaper Charlie Hebdo, was among the deadliest in postwar France, sending shock waves through the population and setting the Nation and Europe on edge. Matteo Renzi and John Kerry are giving their declarations in French, the Pope is calling to oppose violence.

Nobody has dared ask the question: "Have they gone too far?" The media is vowing to defend the right for free speech without ever mentioning religion in the same sentence.

There is a feeling of solidarity in Paris that is most unusual and watching the local news stations you detect a singleness of purpose to fight terrorism, condemning these kind of acts.

I am overwhelmed by the reaction of people around the globe in public as well as in private. During lunch with friends yesterday, each of our phones had started receiving texts and messages around the same time. The calls were from friends and family abroad, all wondering if we were safe and wanting to know what was going on. The news had travelled to their part of the world before it hit us.

Today, France's journalists are adamant about freedom of speech. Yesterday, two terrorists attempted to silence some of the country's greatest creative and iconoclastic talents, today the world is reading their cartoons. Newspaper front pages around the planet are paying tribute to Charlie.

Charb's last cartoon published Wednesday morning, January 7th, 2015
(I decided to avoid publishing Charlie Hebdo cartoons after this morning's second incident and therefore have edited my visual.)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...