A Peace Protest Interrupted with Violence

As many of you are aware, two bomb blasts disrupted a peaceful protest this morning near the train station in Ankara, the capital of Turkey.  Now ten hours later, the death toll has risen to 86 with close to 200 people injured.  The senselessness of this action makes me wonder why people try to get a message across in this manner.  Interesting to read and listen to responses to the violence this afternoon; many commenters feel that government officials, high-ranking ones especially, are behind the bombings.  Others say it was the work of the PKK or political parties such as the AKP or the CHP.  With the November 1st general election just three weeks away, I am not surprised at the violence in Ankara.  Honestly, I don’t have any idea who is to blame for what occurred today in my home away from home; I do know that the lives of many families have been affected by today’s violence.  Will this event sway voters in the elections, if the blasts were indeed motivated by the desire for a change in government?  If caused by an organization that either supports or does not support Turkey’s views and actions regarding ISIS in Syria or Kurds in Turkey and Iraq, will the government change policies that relate to those issues?

When you have a moment of quiet today, say a prayer or send positive thoughts for the Turkish people.  Yes, the Turks as a group, because these proud people are feeling the pain of having their country and in Ankara, their city, torn apart by differing opinions.  Today’s incident hits a little close to home and I will admit to being a bit edgy since learning of the blasts this morning.  Am not packing my bags for Seattle but also am not going to live in fear.  I’m a realist but I do hope for a better future than what we saw today.

BTW–you may be horrified by video coverage of today’s blasts but what you have seen are sanitized versions.  I have an entirely different perspective after seeing a YouTube video showing bodies in various states of life, blood-soaked sidewalks, and dazed individuals sobbing.  The video is age-restricted and no commenting is allowed; it contains very graphic images of the blast’s aftermath.  If you are ok with these images, you might want to check out that video entitled, “10 Ekim 2015 Ankara” by F. Pinar.  Another video has a very similar name and almost exactly the same footage but many of the images are blurred.  Again–there is graphic footage on the video so mentally prepare yourself or do not watch it.  Take care, my friends; hug those you love and smile at those you do not.  Tomorrow will be  a new day.

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