Thursday, September 13, 2012

Senseless Violence

As I moved my legs and arms on the elliptical machine at Planet Fitness this morning I saw our Secretary of State appear on the television in front of me with a breaking news banner below her. As I switched my ear buds from my mp3 player to the television I listened in horror to what she had to say. As she told me and the nation about the savage attack on the US embassy in Libya I couldn't believe what I was hearing. It got worse when she informed us that the slain ambassador fell in love with the Middle East while he served as a volunteer in Peace Corps Morocco.

Chris Stevens helped save Libya's eastern city of Benghazi during last year's revolution. He died there Tuesday night, along with another diplomat and two State Department security officers.

My first thoughts went to my friend Peter Kitlas, who served with me in Peace Corps Morocco. Who is now is at the beginning of a masters degree in Middle Eastern studies, on a similar path as Chris Stevens was. Also several other friends I served with, ones whose lives are headed to similar places where Chris lost his and how I could have been hearing about the passing of a colleague of mine.  

This incident struck a strong chord with me because of my love for Muslim people and the damage, on many levels that this has caused. Not only is the rest of the Muslim world upset over what some of their own did but they now have even more reasons to be frowned upon among those still living in ignorance.

We all suffer when things like this happen and it only proves Secretary Clinton's words that our fight is not yet over.  My hope is that Libya can continue to grow and strengthen as a more free nation and that more senseless acts of violence do not continue to be included in this plight. 

Take a look at a explanation of why the video "The Innocence of Muslims", with its depiction of the prophet Mohammed, was so negatively viewed.