Person 1: It’s tragic what’s happened in Paris
Person 2: Yeah, totally insane. All these innocent people.
Person 1: Yes. I have a couple of French friends so I was up all night trying to make sure they were fine.
Person 2: Oh, I hope they were safe.
Person 1: Yes, thank God. I couldn’t know what to say except to express my deep sympathy and my apologies.
Person 2: Wait, what were you apologizing for?
Person 1: The bombings, you know.
Person 2: I’m sorry, I’m not following. What did you have to do with the bombings?
Person 1: Not me, but you know, because those were our people who did it,
Person 2: “Our people”, person 1, when did you join ISIS?
Person 1: I didn’t, it’s just that they are from here and they are Muslims
Person 2: They call themselves Muslims, that doesn’t make them our people and doesn’t make us responsible for their heinous acts.
Person 1: Well, we share something.
Person 2: Really? Tell me now because I don’t get it, as a Muslim living in the Middle East, who has never been to France, never incited against non-Muslims, never committed any discriminatory acts or promoted self-supremacy and have always spoken against terrorism, how am I supposed to be held responsible for the acts of some lunatics miles away who were created by certain powers for the sake of their own political agendas and then they were made to believe that killing people gives an express trip to Heaven? How am I supposed to be put in the same circle as these criminals just because at face value we seem to share the same beliefs?
Person 1: But people in the West don’t know that.
Person 2: Well then they need to educate themselves about it. You know what else they need to know? They need to know that ISIS kills many more Muslims that it does None-Muslims. How many people in the West know that? How many people heard about the bombings at the Mosque in Beirut one night before the Paris bombings where scores of people were killed? How about all the others slaughtered by ISIS in Syria? How about the bombings in the mosques in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait perpetrated by none other than ISIS? How about the Jordanian pilot who was burned to death by ISIS, that was a devout Muslim by the way. How can we be held accountable when we are victims ourselves?
Person 1: Well, for them those ISIS members came from amongst us
Person 2: Every society has its deluded bunch, and extremism can thrive wherever it finds fertile soil. As there are Islamic extremists there are right wing extremists in Europe and America, Jewish extremists in Israel, extremism isn’t confined to one religion or nationality. Heck, there are even extremist Buddhist killing Muslims in Burma by the hundreds, did the world know about that? No, because they only see what the media shows them. So, instead of blaming a whole religion or people, go blame those who are funding terrorist groups and funding the war in Syria and the Middle East.
Person 1: That’s true, but perhaps they feel they have the right to demand an apology.
Person 2: Look, I understand what happened was horrendous, and they have the right to be angry, but we’re not the people they should be angry at, nor are we the ones who need to be making apologies. You don’t see Arabs going around demanding apology from every Jew in the world because of the Israeli on-slaughter of the Palestinians, and we surely didn’t demand an apology from every Christian in the world after Bush invaded Iraq killing hundreds of thousands while calling it a crusade. In fact, we Arabs, Muslims, the French people, the Latino people and everyone suffering from these wars all over the world have one common enemy. The powers that be who work in the shadows to serve their own political and fiscal agendas. Those may claim to belong to different religions, but in the end they all share the same values of greed and thirst for power. Those are the ones who pin us against each other, those are the ones whose interest lies in spreading hatred and discrimination, the ones who divide to rule. Those are the ones we should look out for, and the ones who should be making apologies.
Don’t be naïve, Person 1, this is much bigger than you and me, much bigger than all of us.