On November 24th, Egyptians in the town of al Rawda were left picking up the pieces and searching for answers in the aftermath of the deadliest terrorist attack in modern Egyptian history. The attack, which took the lives of 305 innocent civilians, occurred during the midday prayers at the al Rawda mosque, which is located in the northern Sinai peninsula of Egypt. ISIS is believed to have been behind the attack.
When news of the attack broke, I was devastated by the horrific, senseless act of violence. I was left in shock, yet in some way, I felt distant from the situation that was unfolding. I felt sympathy and grief for the victims, but there was still a part of me that could not comprehend the attack. It was in this moment that I realized the bubble of security and ignorance that I was in.
Oftentimes, when news of these horrific, heart-breaking attacks emerge we are outraged, but days later we seem to move on, forgetting about those whose lives were majorly impacted by the deadly attack. One of the reasons for this inaction is that we feel far away and removed from these attacks. We feel as if we are powerless to do anything, because of the distance between us and those affected, and therefore we let this feeling dictate how we respond. It is not that we do not care for those affected, it is that we do not believe there is anything we can do to help those affected. However, we must realize that the truth is that we are not powerless and that we can make a difference if we come together to help those affected.
There are several things we can do help those who have been affected by this senseless act of violence. One of the things we can do is support organizations, in the region, working to help survivors overcome the challenges that come with consequences of the attack. Another thing that we can do is send support to refugee camps in the region who are giving sanctuary to civilians fleeing the violence that is spreading throughout the region.
Although these attacks can be frightening and shocking, we must not let feelings of powerlessness dictate our actions. We must stand strong in the face of injustice. We must remember that when we come together as one people, regardless of race or country of origin, we can overcome the challenges of these dark times.