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"A handkerchief to wipe away tears"

Via seldear, a post-9/11 story I don't think I'd run across before.

As America looked inward in the days, weeks and months after September 11, 2001, others around the world made extraordinary gestures toward the United States. 
We were all so focused on ourselves – understandably so – that many probably missed the fact that Iran’s President Mohammad Khatami condemned the attacks, that Ireland and Israel held full national days of mourning, that the Afghan Taliban told “American children [that] Afghanistan feels your pain”.

You are even less likely to have heard what could be one of the most touching reactions of all. This is the story of how a destitute Kenyan boy turned Stanford student rallied his Masai tribe to offer its most precious gift to America in its time of need.

I do, however, get a lump in my throat every time I think of one article I read not long after. I can't remember who the reporter was or the main thrust of the piece, but will never forget the bit where he described rural women in Afghanistan telling him they'd heard 10,000 people were killed "in a village in New York," and pressing gifts of milk and eggs on him for the widows and orphans.

Human beings are awesome. Never doubt it.


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 13th, 2011 12:21 pm (UTC)
There's a children's book about it: 14 cows for America. (The book has a website that includes some of the beautiful illustrations.)

Edited at 2011-09-13 04:22 pm (UTC)
Sep. 13th, 2011 12:25 pm (UTC)
Thank you! It's mentioned near the bottom of the linked post, but it's easy to miss.
Sep. 13th, 2011 04:18 pm (UTC)
That is truly amazing. Our species is such a puzzle - capable of such brutality, but simultaneously capable of such depths of compassion. There may be hope for us yet.
Sep. 13th, 2011 04:20 pm (UTC)
Always. :-)
Sep. 14th, 2011 01:07 am (UTC)
Oh geez. Now we feel kind of extra like assholes for bombing all their roads. :-/

(Okay, that's a really simplistic statement, but it's how I felt reading your beautiful post. I need to go send them some milk and eggs now. I just. The tears.)
Sep. 14th, 2011 07:53 am (UTC)
{{{hugs}}} I know exactly what you mean. I remember when I first read it, I had just been sitting there going "Oh, great, we're bombing Chulak." (I flew to Vancouver for Gatecon on 9/18. The whole thing is inextricably bound up with SG-1 fandom in my head.)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


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