Omran Daqneesh’s bloodied face is the haunting image that first struck me. The face of the dazed boy, 5 years old, has now become a symbol of the tragedy raging across Syria to this day. Though he himself doesn’t speak a word, his figure has clearly hit people across the world and brought home the brutality we only ever hear of in terms of numbers and statistics.
It’s heartbreaking that Omran’s case is neither unique nor infrequent. Syria has constantly been bombarded with airstrikes, with the latest being from Russia, which launched airstrikes from Iran. While Syria remains embroiled in a seemingly unending conflict, the thing I am constantly reminded of is Omran’s silence, as he almost dazedly tries to rub the blood off his face, only to realise it is probably futile. If there is one image now that will constantly remind me of what war actually means, it will be that of Omran Daqneesh.
The horrors of war may be easily forgotten when we are far away and safe behind computer screens, but if the silent image of a bloodied little boy, just rescued from a destroyed building, isn’t enough to rouse us to bring change, then nothing will.