Flashback Moments
Samer Majzoub

It was Tuesday morning on that sunny day of Sep. 11 2001 when one of the teachers at my school in Montreal stormed into my office. “ Did you hear what happened?!!!”, “one of the World Trade Centers Tower Twins in New York city was hit by a commercial aircraft”. I turned on the TV. , in few minutes my office was packed with the teachers and some of the students. Is it an accident? Or a deliberate act? The answer was so fast to come; another passenger jet struck the second twin tower of the World Trade Center. Our eyes were glued to the small screen, is it another American movie or is this real?!!!

Here, we are witnessing the most powerful nation in the world experiencing the unimaginable destruction, death and misery. In these very counted minutes, the one super power nation that is equipped with the most sophisticated kind of weapons that could destroy the whole world in few hours, and that has the strongest secret intelligence agency was overpowered with small knives and box cutters.

While I was still physically in my office with others watching the indescribable collapse of the Twin Towers in NY, and my feelings were in high alert, the tape of my memory rolled years back to the days I was living in Beirut under the Israeli invasion of 1982. The roars of the Israeli jet fighters flying over spreading death and devastation in every corner of the city. Thousands of innocent residents and whole families perished under rubbles and ruins of tumbled buildings that were hit by huge rockets made, unfortunately, in USA.

The sound of the phone ringing woke me up. Concerned parents worried, the media is reporting Muslims and Arabs, all the Muslims and the Arabs, are accused of being behind the tragedy of NY. The campaign of “Islamphobia” is on almost every TV and Radio channel. I was bombarded by questions from the students, what is going on? How could this happen in North America? Why is the media accusing Arabs and Muslims of being the “Terrorists”? Why is the media focusing on the religion and the ethnicity of the “suspects”? What kind of reaction will we be subjected to? etc. Many question marks with no satisfactory answers.

“Flashback” moments insisted on coming back to my head. This time it was Palestine. Fifty-Three years of suffering and anguish of the whole Palestinian population under continuous occupation. A population that has being subjected to all kinds of atrocities, economic hardship, massacres and destruction of the fundamental nature of its humanity. The images of the massacre of Sabra and Shatila refugees’ camps will never fade away. Justice should be served for the victims of NY, moreover, the same kind of justice should be served to other innocent people as well, who are the victims of occupation and oppression for decades, the Palestinians.

In this unfortunate period of our lives, we as Muslim Community in Montreal join our society at large in their grieving for the loss of those innocent people that were killed in NY and other cities. It is rare moments in our modern history where the innocent people have to perish from Palestine, Chechnya, Iraq, North Ireland, Rwanda to USA and other places of the World will join the list in the short coming days if any kind of war is declared as the media is reporting. It is regrettable to have this kind of human unity only in blood shedding and misery.