The world was hit last week by the news of the war starting in Ukraine.
I woke up last Thursday and after finishing up my morning routine, the first thing that I did, like any self-respecting millennial, was to check out Facebook.
There, and to my utter horror, I learned about the Russian invasion of the capital Kyiv. In the span of a few hours, that invasion had killed dozens, injured hundreds, and traumatized millions.
I am not a political buff, nor do I have the slightest interest in ever becoming one. I don’t like listening to lies from power-hungry and corrupt leaders.
I also don’t enjoy following infuriating events that are outside my control. That is why I choose to block-off politics as best as I can.
Being from Lebanon myself, a country with its fair share of endless tragedies, I follow politics from as far as possible. That way, I maximize my chances of properly functioning while also staying informed.
During the days leading up to the war, I was aware of the tensions between Ukraine and Russia, especially since one of my dear friends is from Ukraine.
Although she left Ukraine years ago and is currently residing in another country, she still has family stuck there, suffering the terrible consequences of this horrific tragedy.
Before these events, my friend used to visit her birth country frequently. And on each one of her visits, she would bring back something from home.
I met her four years ago, and since then, we have quickly become friends. When I welcomed her into my life, I also unconsciously welcomed her country.
Thanks to her, I have tasted chocolate from Ukraine, pork sausages from Ukraine, and even had Ukrainian honey poured into my daily cup of coffee. All of them were delicious and — filled with alcohol, tasty, and super healthy — all in that order.
I would be transported to faraway lands I was yet to visit, with each new culinary experience.
I became close to Ukraine without even realizing it. After every trip, my friend would recount her endless adventures, and food experiences backed with mouth-watering pictures and family portraits, and I would travel to Ukraine, befriending people I had never met. Well, in my head at least.
One night, I even learned about their traditional outfit, since I was invited to a Ukrainian dinner, and was asked to dress the part. I was aware of their habits through her stories.
And because I liked my friend, I liked her country. I was even planning on maybe visiting it one day.
Although my friend left her country a long time ago, part of her is still there. But most importantly, her family is still there.
So for me, following the news about Ukraine was a little more personal than usual. But it’s not a necessity to have visited Ukraine or know someone from there, to care.
All that it takes is two cents’ worth of empathy to realize that the people living there do not deserve any of what is happening.
And yet, it is. War in our modern days has been categorized as some faraway notion that only affects people from different eras at best, or third world countries, such as ours, at worst.
But today, the reality is different. First and second-world countries have tasted the bitter truth that we, as Middle Easterns, have been spoon-fed since our infancy.
We know that, despite how long we have come, corrupt governments that do not necessarily echo the sentiments of the majority, are still in place.
Our fate as a human race is still dependent on the moods of the corrupt few, who by some sort of complex of grandeur have reached terrifying heights of power.
And it makes sense because no man in his right mind would want to be responsible for the fates of millions.
Any decent human will crumble under the pressure, and that is why only crazed and power-hungry narcissists ascend to the throne of power. This has not changed since the beginning of the world. Well, at least not in its essence, but its outside modality.
What is happening in Ukraine today, made first and second-world nations realize that no one is exempt from the greed and the blood-thirsty wrath of some countries.
Many of them have been changing their priorities and starting to take military precautions.
Now that the war is no longer a distant notion that affects only under-developed countries, they want to prevent a similar scenario.
They realized that the greed of absolutely all-powerful countries has no limit and that all they do is lie.
They know now that murderous ambition does not distinguish between color, the way that we have been so malevolently programmed to think.
What is the fate of the Ukrainians? No one knows. When will this madness stop? We can only hope that it will stop the soonest.
What is for sure though, is that it is high time for humanity to self-reflect on our failed political systems.
Nothing has been left whole at the hands of worldwide leaders, neither the hand of nature that feeds us nor the innocence of our youth. They even managed to put the fate of our entire race at risk.
Our political systems are proving their failures once again. What is the future? No one knows, but the desperate and urgent need for change at a global level remains undeniable.