Hey guys. All fashion and beauty aside today, I’m sharing a very personal note that I was debating in my mind on whether or not I should publically address. This is partly due to the fact that this is a personal fashion blog and not a political forum. I hope this post does not offend anyone. In my career working in digital, I have witnessed the power of the internet and how something can go viral overnight and help spread awareness for a cause. So here I go. (Please note these words are my own. I am simply expressing my personal opinion and am not here to share every detail of what’s happening. I am just using my platform to echo a society’s cry for help.)
I’m not someone who sits and talks about politics – it’s just not my thing. I’ll never understand, however, why people kill other people for “power”. It’s been happening since B.C. and it’s an ugly trend that never seems to go out of “style.” Today’s post was scheduled to feature my Kurdistan recap video/trip photos but I felt God put something bigger on my heart to share that needs all of our attention. As many of you have been keeping up with the news over the past few months (or maybe you haven’t), things have not been looking so great in Iraq with the IS terrorist group (or ISIS as the U.S media calls it) doing whatever it takes to seize power/control of Iraq to make it an Islamic-militant state. At what cost? They are literally kidnapping and slaughtering innocent lives in brutal ways that I literally cannot type into words. This includes small children. And for those who have escaped the terror, they face a new daily terror trying to survive as refugees in a scorching-hot summer with no place to go. Many of you followed my recent journey to Kurdistan and saw a peek inside my so-called ‘Kurdish life’. I wanted to focus on the positive and beautiful things around Kurdistan but that doesn’t mean I forgot about the terror happening outside our border. Although Kurdistan is a protected region that IS has not dared to cross, the KRG (Kurdish Regional Government) is working over-time to ensure the public’s safety as well as those they feel responsible to protect in surrounding regions that are suffering.
The closest I got to seeing the reality of how critical this situation is was when I visited Erbil and spotted a refugee camp of people who escaped the IS terror. There tents were there homes. I could tell many of these families felt blessed that they escaped IS but there was still this look of terror and fear in their eyes. It was a sad sight to see but it opened my eyes.
As the death toll increases, so has the silence around the world. Pres. Barzani (we are not blood-related so stay with me here) recently put out a statement addressing the current situation and Kurdistan’s desperate cry for international help. This situation takes me back to the time when even the United States needed ground-support in Iraq to get rid of Saddam. They couldn’t do it alone. The Kurdistan Regional Government had a key role in helping the US troops by providing their military aid when everybody else in the Middle-east did not want to intervene. The Peshmergas (Kurdish army) were on the ground fighting terror with U.S troops and now, those same Peshmerga troops are back in their uniforms fighting on the grounds alone desperate for international support. Who has Kurdistan’s back? We must spread the word to help get this issue out in anyway that we can. I may be just one voice, but together we can be a louder voice echoing the need for assistance from international officials and rescue teams.
Right now the Yezidi Kurds of Shengal are suffering and need our prayers the most. In less than one day more than 2,000 Yazidi’s were killed in Sinjar. They are being tortured and killed by IS for absolutely no good reason and those who have survived are dying refugees now without food, water and a safe shelter. Tens of thousands of Yezidi refugees are left fighting for survival on Shingal Mountain. Today we learn that people are eating leaves as three more have died trying to survive. This number is only going to increase. We also need to support and send our prayers to the Peshmerga troops who are the only defense on the grounds fighting to protect the people and many have already lost their lives early in this battle. Their families need our prayers. Just two days ago I also learned 8 Christians were crucified by IS for simply being Christian and refusing to convert. As a Christian myself, I will stand firm with my fellow Christian brothers and sisters to defend our faith. Hundreds of women have been kidnapped and raped after having to witness their husbands and children being murdered by IS. They need our prayers. I used to sit back and think that only the government could fix things. That was until I realized that God is bigger than the government. IS may be out to kill and destroy, but God is out to save and heal. I pray for those suffering to find comfort in knowing that God has not turned his back even though it seems like everyone else has. I pray that my fellow Kurdish community continues to stand strong for their country and their people. I feel like the image of Iraq right now in my mind is it being possessed by the devil and we must stand in faith not fear. Instead of telling God how big are problems are, we will tell our problems how BIG our God is!!
Our voices are more powerful than you may think or believe during this time my friends. We all have a platform to help spread awareness and love. Regardless if this affects you or not, we have to help humanity. You don’t have to be a celebrity with a large following or a fashion blogger to help make a difference. It can be as simple as starting a group text with a hand full of your friends, sharing a powerful article link on your social media to get the conversation going. Simply help GET THE WORD OUT. Just because CNN may stop reporting on this issue, that doesn’t mean we have to. Choose wisely what you read and be thoughtful of what you say. I’ve been keeping up with the news through this trusted Kurdish media outlet (English version) and hope you will stay updated: Rudaw.net/english
There is so much more I can obviously add to this novel that I have written, but I’ll let you continue the story by helping spread the word for help. This is a genocide that needs to stop. I really appreciate you guys letting me open up in this way and I hope you receive this well. This blog has truly been a blessing in my life and I know God gave me this platform for a reason. As we pray that God bless and protect each and every single victim, our brothers and sisters in Sinjar, and those who are suffering in the attacks, let’s not forget the power of God and our voice. No matter where you are or who you are – take a second to share what you can because anything is better than nothing.
Get in on the conversation on social media: #PrayForShingal #PrayForShengal #PrayForYezidis #PrayForPeace #FreeKurdistan (if there any other I’m missing, please comment and share!) I hope you will be encouraged to take a moment to spread the word and share this article. <3
God bless our world my friends.