Hope Against Hope

It was a fine Sunday morning. I was in high spirits as I had just got done with my exams and had the whole Sunday entirely tomyself. I switched on the TV and was flipping through channels as I poured myself freshly brewed coffee. The channel search cameto a halt as I came across a famous news channel. My heart started pounding as my breath hitched. The TV screen filled with gruesome images of blood and dead bodies and high pitched screams emitted from the speakers. I did not have to read the tickers to associate this oh-so-very similar scene to the pandemonium of a bomb attack, my mind automatically did it for me.

Horrified, I gazed at the screen, only to find out that a terrorist attack had taken place at the populated place of Qissa Khwani Bazar, Peshawar. Had it been only a week, when a similar attack took place at All Saints Church, a local church of Peshawar blasting off about 80 people? Has the vicious series of attacks started once again?

A terrorist attack every Sunday, will that become a bloody ritual?

My head swam with these questions as I switched off the TV and placed a hand around my now cold cup of coffee. The day was ruined anyway.

One of my teachers once said that Pakistanis, as a nation, have become accustomed to violence . We have seen so much bloodshed around us that it has made us prone to it. Now any number of deaths fails to make an impact on us unless they come in the form of three digits. Other than that, our response to causalities has now become a mere ‘meh’.

We have suffered so much as a nation.

When I look at my country, I do not see a single part of it that has not been injured. Together we have suffered at the hands of terrorism, foreign encroachment, natural disasters, self-induced disasters. Together we have died and cried. They have killed us despite religion, caste, creed and color. No discrimination there. But, oh the irony of it! None of the tragedies have brought us together and merged us as one. We fight on the basis of color, caste, creed, religion and unbelievably petty things. None of the sufferings have brought us together. Instead we continue to fight and disagree.

Albeit the times are bad and the crisis doesn’t seem to end, I hope against hope that there would be an end to it. I look forward to the times when we’ll emerge as one and will get over our futile issues for the sake of a greater good.

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