The First Genocide of the 21st Century is a War on Children

We can not continue to turn away from the children of Syria. We must look the beast in the eyes. We must help. To the UN, I beseech you. To NATO, I beseech you. Pope Francis, I beseech you. President Obama, I beseech you. To the EU, I beseech you. China, I beseech you. Vladimir Putin, I beseech you. Assad, I beseech you. Donald Trump, I beseech you. ISIS, I beseech you. Stop this wholesale slaughter of children. They are being erased from the earth like fleas brushed away from the collar of a rabid dog called war. (Naplam Used on Playground.)
In 2016, the United Nations identified 13.5 million Syrians requiring humanitarian assistance, of which more than 6 million are internally displaced within Syria, and over 4.8 million are refugees outside of Syria. Along with government-backed assaults, air strikes and independent killings led by rebel forces, at least 463 civilians, including 62 children, were killed in eastern Aleppo since mid-November, according to data collected by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.(Refugee Crisis.)
The U.N. estimates about 400,000 people have been killed in Aleppo since the battle first started back in March 2011. Terrifyingly, the UN no longer keeps track of the death toll due to the inaccessibility of many areas and the complications of navigating conflicting statistics put forward by the Syrian government and armed opposition groups.(Syrian Death Toll.)
The world is witnessing a holocaust. Complicit in this crime against humanity, we all have become bystanders to the century’s first genocide. How much longer can this insane assault on the innocent go on?
Make no mistake, until the children are liberated from the battle zones of Syria, we are their judge, jury, and executioner. All of us. No one is guiltless. Every last baby which has been incinerated by the flames of kerosene and napalm, and every baby who has been ripped to soft shreds by the shrapnel of grenades, are our responsibility. Every baby that is choked to death by the purple haze of chemical gases, and for every baby that is pinned to the basement floor by falling asphalt and bombarded bricks, we are responsible. This is the world that we have created for these children. This is the world that we have allowed to become so sedated, empty, vicious, and wasteful. This is the world that brought these babies to the torture chamber and walked away like sulking cowards into the twilight of forgetfulness.
If not for the omnipresence of God’s love-even in those moments I am describing above-I would not be able to look at myself in the mirror. God help us all. God, I beseech you. Stop this war. Stop this war. Stop this war.
Even today we raise our hand against our brother… We have perfected our weapons, our conscience has fallen asleep, and we have sharpened our ideas to justify ourselves as if it were normal we continue to sow destruction, pain, death. Violence and war lead only to death.
Pope Francis





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