Today, the most remembered anniversary is the tragic bombing of the World Trade Center, New York, in 2001, by Al Qaeda fanatic activists. Since then, our already complicated reactions towards the Middle Eastern conflicts have never been the same. It is easy to remember this day as the one that proved “the other” is really extremely dangerous, treacherous and we have to fear them.
The main issues, obviously, were the conflicts in the Middle East. But it raised our awareness that they are “the other”.
Let’s be honest: even the most liberal and relativistic among us do. I won’t travel to a Muslim country. I can preach on cultural tolerance, but I am scared shitless of all types of conservative, sexist and political fanatics. It doesn’t have to be in the Middle East: as soon as I learn I will be among irrational sexist and political fanatics, I’m out. I just won’t go.
Dear reader, please take a few moments to browse the aniversaries in Wikipedia’s list.
You will see this is also the anniversary of Chile’s coup d’Etat, that killed democratically elected president Salvador Allende and established the bloody dictatorship led by Pinochet until 1990.
In one, the people of the United States were victimized by a terrorist attack. In the other, the people of Chile were victimized by the allies of the United States.
In the links bellow, most of the historical marks are dates of battles and all in all, we have no way of establishing a line between “the good guys” and “the bad guys”. That is circumstantial and historically contextualized.
All I suggest for today is that we ponder on the horrors of war itself and the ways we may devise to prevent it, to promote tolerance and transparent dialogue, of opposing fanaticism and hate.