Post #9

Syrian Refugees Fighting for Freedom & Finding Peace between Islam & the West

The Dispossessed article did a great job of explaining why these people were leaving, the desperation to get out of their home countries with the use of the comic strip and the storyline of firsthand reports and real events that happened gathered by journalist Alia Malek. It was also interesting to hear the perspective of the countries who have to take in the refugees. Many of the countries can’t house or feed so many refugees. They talked about how wealthier countries (U.S., China) need to help out with supporting the refugees. I especially liked this quote- “Today’s world is too small to allow a part- any part- of it to sink into chaos and despair” (Caryl, 2015).

I think the comic did a good job of depicting the emotions of uncertainty in the middle- will they open the boarders in Budapest? Will we take a boat, train, walk, what will we do??  It showed the hardship of traveling to safety and the overwhelming relief when they finally make it to safety after worrying if they’ll get caught, sleeping outside, trying to avoid being fingerprinted/checked for I.D. and passport, trying to find enough money to pay for travel and hotels, etc. Of course it was only a few people’s story so it’s hard to do complete justice to the refugee situation, but I think it did the best it could!

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“Migrants traveling from Turkey to Greece.” Carillon, Joel. 

Photo retrieved from: http://joelcarillet.photoshelter.com/image/I0000JctPLBArHZ

I thought the film My Escape was a really great film that depicted the emotions, fears and horribleness of fleeing for safety. I am not a big news person and I probably need to change that because by not staying informed, it’s easy to ignore problems that are happening globally. This film showed me the terror, uncertainty and loss that many refugees had to face. It was eye-opening and heart wrenching. Three things in particular caught my attention in the film. First, was the fact that people had to walk through the desert to escape. Especially since there was the guy’s little nephew with him too. The young boy said it was one of the hardest walks he’s done and his feet kept sinking into the sand. The second was how scary it was for the refugees to feel like they’re fate is in the hands of the smugglers. Some had tried to escape over 5 times and failed. The third was when the one man filmed himself inside a closed car with about 30 other people to hide from police. He said that just weeks early a whole van full of people died.

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“Syrian refugee child sleeps in his father’s arms waiting to board bus to Greece.” 2015. 

Photo retrieved from: http://www.jordantimes.com/news/world/us-administration-defends-syria-refugee-programme

The story of intercultural confrontation depicts how the U.S. and the Middle East see each other in negative ways, in dehumanizing stereotypes and do not see anything in common with one another. The West associates the Middle East with images of desert oases, sword-bearing Arabs, veiled women and belly dancers, etc. “These images are united by the same idea of “otherness” that has haunted Europe’s relations with the Eastern Mediterranean” (Funk & Said, 2004). Middle Eastern images of the West are colored simultaneously by envy and fear, admiration and suspicion. Western technological, economic, and political achievements are appealing, while the assertion of Western military, political, and economic power creates feelings of distrust and resentment (Funk & Said, 2004). The Middle East also think negatively about the West in terms of sexual immorality, family life, crime and public safety. With this continual dichotomy of “otherness,” cultural differences are exaggerated and distorted- furthering each other from peace with one another. The story of intercultural compatibility showed ways in which the West and Middle East could find values they have in common that would provide a basis for understanding and cooperation. These values include respect for learning, desire for peace, esteem for toleration, and partisanship on behalf of human dignity. We can also stop ourselves from reiterating stories that exaggerate our differences, instill fear and inflame conflict. This new perspective offers hope for improved relations. The story of compatibility seeks to counteract misperceptions and double standards,and to bolster cultural empathy and mutual respect with one another.

 


Work Cited

Caryl, C. (2015). Refugees are flooding countries that can’t protect them. Will the levies break? The Dispossessed Issue. Retrieved from: https://bblearn.missouri.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-3161662-dt-content-rid-31263792_1/courses/SP2017.GERMAN.4810.01/The%20Dispossessed.pdf

Funk, N. & Said, A. (2004). Islam and the West: Narratives of Conflict and Conflict Transformation. Retrieved from: https://bblearn.missouri.edu/bbcswebdav/pid-3161661-dt-content-rid-31263465_1/courses/SP2017.GERMAN.4810.01/Funk%26Said_91IJPS.pdf

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