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Terrorists vs the educated: A tragic, growing trend

Very depressing news came out of Kenya, this week. On Thursday, islamic militants of the al-Shabaab group invaded Kenya’s Garissa University and killed 147 students – most of whom can be assumed were Christians, as the main targets of the attack were people of the Christian faith. Graphic photos have emerged from Thursday’s massacre and they are beyond heartbreaking.

The attack on Garissa University is a reminder that terrorists are scared of children and youths who possess a book and a pen. This is not the first time that news has emerged about terrorists attacking a school. Last year, in the Chibok village of Borno state (Nigeria), over 200 schoolgirls were abducted from their school. Malala Yousafzai was shot in an attempt to silence her calls for girls’ rights to education. Oh, and there was that time when a suicide bomber dressed as a student, killed 47 people at a secondary school in Yobe state, Nigeria. Malala Yousafzai stated that “One child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world.”. This is a fact and this reality makes terrorists very afraid.

Students go to school and learn about team work, love, the value of diversity and the importance of social justice. Terrorists coerce to differ on such tenets of education and would rather kill, try to divide the Christian from the Muslim, cause children to become orphans and cause youths with big dreams to be terrified. A young person who has access to books, a pen and a classroom is the greatest threat to a terrorist. So, the latter will try to silence youths and put fear in the hearts of many who want to change the world, you want to foster a world that gives no comfort to people with barbaric desires.

A recurring occurrence is that after every attack, after every threat to our freedoms, our resilience grows stronger – the message of love echoes louder around the world, the realization that education is so powerful that it makes terrorists scared causes people to jubilate and makes us raise the awareness even more. See, the good in humanity stays winning.

The world is filled with so much love and extreme levels of hate. Governments around the world need to put in place security measures that will ensure that the public is protected and stays safe, if unexpected attacks on their freedoms occur. There should be sound security and surveillance systems put in place. The defence departments and agencies must be adequately funded. So many are families are being put into mourning, several dreams of a bright future have been shot away, fear is being instilled in many youths who want to better their lives by getting an education. Governments have a role to play in reducing the death tolls amongst youths who are armed with nothing but knowledge, books and pens – overall, armed with a voice that can change the world.

My heart goes out to the families of the 147 students who lost their lives in the Garissa massacre. I am pained at this occurrence and I encourage world leaders to tighten their security and give terrorists no chance of coming in contact with the future leaders of our world.

May the victims’ souls rest in eternal peace.

Love,

Chiamaka.

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