It’s quite despairing that we have to start 2015 with such a tragedy. The attack on Charlie Hebdo is not the first of its kind, but it was so violent and unexpected that it left the world in shocked unity. The attackers, who cried Allahu Akbar and that they have avenged the Prophet Mohamad PBUH, were said to be Muslim.
This attack came at a time when the Muslim community of France is facing an all-time high level of discrimination and dissent. You can believe what you want about the attackers, but whatever their ulterior agenda was, their plan has backfired. One of their victims, Ahmed Merabet, was a Muslim police officer.
How ironic is it that they came to kill people who made fun of their Prophet, only to be faced with a Muslim who was called Ahmed of all names?
People can blame Islam and Muslims all they want, but this incident has shown that terrorism has no religion, it does not discriminate. It is simply an act of hateful violence committed by people who have sold their humanity. Their goal is to divide and flourish on the hate that they create. Officer Ahmed’s death should not go in vain, his death is proof that now is not the time to fight against each other, but to stand together against hatred and violence. His death is a message that we have one enemy: Extremism.
Is it idealistic? Maybe. But if we lose hope, it would mean that terrorism has won. Pointing fingers and spewing abhorrence will only serve to ostracize the Muslim community. This is what the terrorists want, they want to feed on that dark energy, and this is how extremism rises and manages to influence vulnerable souls, giving them the illusion of a rightly cause.
May Officer Ahmed and any one who dies fighting extremism and violence rest in peace.