This week corporate news media have vigorously circulated the image of a three-year-old toddler whose corpse was found on a Turkish beach in an apparent effort to illustrate the tragic dimensions of Europe’s present refugee influx. Yet the same media have been largely absent throughout the US, Israeli and Saudi-led “war on terror” that has resulted in many millions of injuries and deaths over the past 14 years. In fact, the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Syrian families is a result of a covert Western campaign of regime change being waged against the Assad government.
Indeed, the present refugee crisis is a direct result of the Western war OF terror intensively visited upon the citizens of Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Palestine since September 11, 2001. The stories of these victims that might aid in providing crucial historical context to the broader campaign to reshape the Middle East–readily available for any capable and enterprising investigator–have been flagrantly overlooked as such “journalism” seeks to focus public attention on a single profound tragedy.
A sense of weary resignation at the plight of the Syrians— and hundreds of thousands of other refugees and migrants taking desperate risks to reach the safety of Europe — was briefly punctured by horrifying images of one of the young victims, a small boy whose body was discovered, face down in the sand, by a Turkish police officer. – New York Times, September 2, 2015.
The full horror of the human tragedy unfolding on the shores of Europe was brought home on Wednesday as images of the lifeless body of a young boy – one of at least 12 Syrians who drowned attempting to reach the Greek island of Kos – encapsulated the extraordinary risks refugees are taking to reach the west. – UK Guardian, Sept. 2, 2015.
The little boy on the beach had a name, and it was Aylan. Searing images of the Syrian toddler’s drowned body, washed ashore after the raft carrying his refugee family capsized off the Turkish coast, pricked consciences worldwide and galvanized passionate debate over the international response to the enormous tide of migrants arriving on Europe’s shores. – Los Angeles Times, Sept. 3, 2015.
His name was Aylan. Images of a drowned Syrian boy’s body washed ashore on a Turkish beach caught the world’s attention Wednesday and highlighted the tragic plight of thousands of migrants who are fleeing the war-torn region, and the brutality of Islamic terrorists, to seek safety and asylum. Three-year-old Aylan Kurdi was one of at least 12 Syrians who drowned trying to reach the Greek island of Kos. – Yahoo News, Sept. 3, 2015.
The 3-year-old found dead Wednesday along the shores of a Turkish resort town was named Aylan Kurdi. His family was trying to reach the Greek island of Kos when their boat capsized. His brother, Galip, 5, and mother, Rehan, 35, also died. Only the boys’ father, Abdullah, survived. – USA Today, September 3, 2015.
The image of a drowned little boy who washed up on a Turkish beach became the haunting symbol Wednesday of an unfolding humanitarian crisis that is shaking Europe. Dressed in a bright red shirt and blue shorts, the toddler identified as 3-year-old Aylan Kurdi was found face down in the surf near the resort town of Bodrum. Little Aylan was one of 17 refugees from war-torn Syria who set off in a dinghy in a desperate attempt to reach the Greek island of Kos and safety. – New York Daily News, September 3, 2015.
The numbers associated with today’s migration crisis are huge: 4 million Syrians fleeing their country; 3 million Iraqis displaced. But it was the image of a solitary child — a toddler in a red T-shirt, blue shorts and Velcro sneakers, found face-down on a Turkish beach — that shocked and haunted the world this week. – NPR, September 3, 2015.
Professor James F. Tracy is an Associate Professor of Media Studies at Florida Atlantic University. James Tracy’s work on media history, politics and culture has appeared in a wide variety of academic journals, edited volumes, and alternative news and opinion outlets. James is editor of Union for Democratic Communication’s Journal Democratic Communiqué and a contributor to Project Censored’s forthcoming publication Censored 2013: The Top Censored Stories and Media Analysis of 2011-2012. Additional writings and information are accessible at memoryholeblog.com..