The Syrian Refugee Crisis and an Image that has Shocked the World…..

By | on 3rd September 2015 | 2 Comments

Back in 2011 I wrote about the Syrian Crisis, I wrote then about the wonderful people helping those displaced by the war in Syria. 4 years on and nothing has changed. The war may have changed it’s face and before we heard about Assad and the terrors he has put on his own people. Now there are rebel factions creating just as much terror in the country as Assad.

Warning uncensored picture in the article, may cause you to be upset…… but so may my words…..

Syrian Boy Dead Beach Drawing
(if anyone knows who the original artist please can you let me know so I can credit thanks)

Entire cities have been destroyed, people have been killed en mass by barrel bombs, shelling and massacre. Rebels have taken over Villages and Towns and kill and create terror.

Yet I see little empathy for the People of Syria, those who are fleeing their country and home, because of the terrors they are faced, to protect their families. They don’t want to leave but what choice do they have….. death, death of a child or loved one….

In 2011 I wrote: Can you imagine this being you?

How would you feel if suddenly your life which was secure and happy changed in a matter of days to fleeing for you life not able to take your precious belongings leaving behind family and friends to their own fate, arriving in a foreign country where you do not speak the language and only known that possibly you are safe. It’s a frightening thought and yet it could happen to any of us. But can you imagine if your child had to do this alone travel miles to another country alone and scared?

The same still applies, but Can you Imagine, walking 1000’s of miles, sometimes getting transport, but having to pay a heavy price to traffickers, to head to the Coast, to pay more people money to help you make the dangerous short crossing from Turkey’s Coast to one of the Greek Islands…..

Because in 4 long years nothing has change and you need to make a life for your family…….

To knowingly taking your precious child on a small inflatable dingy, perhaps you are lucky and get life jackets, perhaps you are not so lucky or don’t have any money left to buy them, you travel to the beach in the day, hiding out till you get given a signal to head to the beach in total darkness, you climb aboard, the small dingy, maybe even a boat, you are sent out onto the dark waters, perhaps even the first time you have seen the sea, perhaps you can’t even swim…. You hold tight to your precious child and then the worst happens, this small light weight boat flips and your in the dark treacherous waters holding on to your child praying you can make it, that you are saved…. but the water is so powerful, it drags you down and the last thought is you have killed your child, that you where not strong enough to save him….. and the last sound you hear is his cries….

Yesterday an image broke, of a young boy not that much different age to my Son, lying dead on a beach in Turkey. Here in Turkey we got the full horror of the images, yet I notice in the UK news it is censored. But we need to look full on, face the horror these people are facing, we have to stop censoring things so our delicate and sheltered lives don’t get disrupted, we have to understand the full horror that is happening right in front of us.


I’ve seen first hand this summer, the refugees, the People, heading to the Coast, I watched as the Coastguard in Dikili left them, on the harbour with no shade in 30 degree heat after been what they call captured out at sea. What I then read was how they are taken back, some choose to be processed and sent to the camps but most don’t, they get released and try again to cross…. On our daily walks we came across kids clothes and shoes, life jackets and pumps to inflate dingy, signs of where they had slept……

You feel helpless, when you see these sights, the worst for me was standing there Coke in hand out with my husband and son enjoying our holiday, looking on to the Syrian People, held at the Coastguard office, while directly next to them over the wall, holidaymakers on the beach, sunbathing, playing in the sea, laughing and enjoying life, totally unaware of the horrors the People on the other side of the wall had faced! It shocked me to my core, I will never forget that image, I couldn’t even take a picture I felt so ashamed.

The International Community needs to stand up and take responsibility, they need to remember these are just People, People who need help, they aren’t out to over run us or take our jobs. They just want safety and a way to start there lives over and make a living for themselves. Because for the majority they are proud and good people who just want to have what you and I have.

A roof over their heads, food on the table, work and to go to bed at night and know they are safe and their family is safe.

Its not longer good enough to give money or food or clothes (they do help!) but now and this should have happened years ago, we need to make a noise a lot of noise and to help these people to stop more innocent lives being lost. We need to make the Governments do something rather than talking about, we need to make the press stop making them out to be criminals, but people who are suffering. These are not Migrants….. These are Refugees needing safety from a war torn country!!

My heart has been broken for a long time now over this and all I can say is that I hope this poor child didn’t die in vane that his image, that is being broadcast for you around the World, on Social Media and being talked about will make you and those in Power pay attention and take action.

© 2015, Kerry Arslan. All rights reserved.

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2 Responses to “The Syrian Refugee Crisis and an Image that has Shocked the World…..”

  1. 15th December 2015

    Espera Reply

    What is truly sad is this family didn’t have to die. They had a job and apartment in Istanbul but did not want to wait for Canada to admit them through the proper channels. Their lives weren’t threatened the father was just impatient. Now his whole family is gone because of greed. That is what is sad !!!!

  2. 13th January 2016

    Kim Reply

    Espera, many people in desperate and panicked circumstances are impatient, and their judgment becomes impaired — this does not mean they planned their own deaths, as you imply.

    Some of the Syrians I meet here in Turkey (or Samos) are not sure where to turn or what to do, some do not want to passively accept the plans for their fate that other people (government officials, for example), make for them, and want to be agents of their own futures.
    Is that something to blame them for?

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