The pictures of the attack on and siege at the Westgate Mall have been on our TV screens for days now. Questions swirl through the media: Is it over? Just how many people were killed? Who are the perpetrators? Personal stories are surfacing, a pregnant mum-to-be and her husband were shot and died just two weeks before their baby was due. Tears spring to my eyes, and I can’t even begin to imagine the grief, devastation and suffering felt by their family and friends.
But hidden amongst the images of bleeding bodies, smoke and the sounds of gunfire are also tiny sprinklings of hope. Of people coming together to support and give to their fellow human beings, touched and moved by what is happening.
And yes, a story that demonstrates that the terrorists are not just evil, vicious and sub-human. A little boy called one a ‘very bad man’ and wasn’t shot but given chocolate and allowed to leave the shopping centre with his mum and sister and a message: ‘please forgive me, we are not monsters’.
I might not understand how the fanatical killing of innocent civilians furthers any cause. But even amidst this awful tragedy there really is hope. People coming together and supporting one another. People giving from the heart. And this is what I cling onto.
Links: 'You're a very bad man' - Huffington Post
'Those are our people'- New York Times