During the last two weeks I have received almost 800 friend requests on Facebook and about 1000 new followers. It’s overwhelming and warms my heart beyond words.
Many many thanks for your trust and support – and for not only thinking it but taking time to tell it.
I can only assume that it is all because of my visit to Damascus and Aleppo. Literally thousands have thanked me for my short texts and photos from there – and for taking the risk going there.
Lots of people go to difficult places, be they humanitarian workers, journalists, photographers, UN people, other diplomats or civil society organisations. But – regrettably, I would say – it is not often I’ve met other researchers in war zones.
Those of us who go, go because we feel we have a duty, because we are curious and must see for ourselves and because a visit opens doors to people, to the suffering and to natural human solidarity.
Media focus on all those with weapons in their hands – the warlords. I’ve always felt enriched and grateful to all the others one can meet, wonderful people who stand up and stand together, struggle, help their neighbours – and survive the other main type of people present, the murderers who get all the fame.
I’m no hero. Just that you know. Many (more) could do what I do.
But back to the social media boom, I’ve just experienced. Continue reading