Caged Humanity?

Nehla-Al-Othman

While scrolling through the New York Times a few days back, I noticed a heartwrenching article that highlighted the bizzare conditions of Syrian Refugee camps. It was about Nehla-Al-Othman, a 6 year old girl who choked to death while eating too quickly, being hungry for days . She had been deprived of minimum care which led her to catch hepatitis and other deadly diseases; she suffered from lack of food and most importantly, mistreatment by her father who used to shackle her with metal chains.

All of us know that these gruesome scenarios are not just seen in Syrian camps but actually in numerous locations around the world. Most of us would recall that the most infamous forced detention of people was seen in Nazi concentration camps from 1933 to 1945, beginning with Adolf Hitler becoming the Chancellor of Germany. Those camps mostly held Jews, as a result of the Holocaust, but also included Gypsies, Slavs, homosexuals and others.

I was really surprised to find out that the deadliest concentration camp was considered to be Auschwitz complex, which not only contained poison-gas chambers, but was also known for incinerating people each day. The detainees were also subjected to barbaric research experiments.Some of the inhumane experiments included Joseph Mengele’s effort to study eye colour, wherein he injected substances into the eyeballs of dozens of children, which caused them excruciating pain. He is also notorious for injecting chloroform into twins’ hearts to see if both of them would die at the same time and in the same manner or not.

Another startling fact that I came across was that Tadeus Sobolewicz, a polish actor and author, was the person who survived the most number of such cruelties. He went through 6 Nazi concentration camps, a Gestapo prison (Gestapo was the official secret police of Nazi Germany), and a 9-day death march (death marches were massive forced transfers of prisoners from one Nazi camp to the other, which involved walking incredibly long distances which usually led to deaths of numerous weakened people).

And it is heartbreaking to know that such camps did not end with the Nazis, however. The Saydnaya military prison complex in Syria, also referred to as “the President’s hellish torture house” by ‘the Guardian’ is Syria’s most notorious jail, marked as a black spot on the human rights map. Nothing has been known about what goes inside since many years, until now…

Inmates were constantly blindfolded when guards entered their cells. The prison is like an echo chamber, where one person being tortured is like everyone being tortured, since the sound travels through water pipes, air vents, literally everywhere, such that you cannot escape it. Thus, the inmates developed an acute aural sensitivity.

I also came across an article by Reuters, wherein their reporters interviewed the workers and contractors at a construction site in Goalpara district of Assam, India, which is suspected to be a detention centre for “illegal migrants”, i.e. those people who have not made it on the citizenship list as a result of NRC.

A UN special rapporteur to Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, also claimed that the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar are living in encampments with conditions eerily similar to the Nazi concentration camps.

All these highlighted articles raise an important concern, i.e. it is critical to ensure the protection of human rights around the world. People need to be treated well with atleast bare minimum facilities.

au revoir,

stay tuned for more.

12 Comments Add yours

  1. Harish Alreja says:

    Very nicely explained..

    Thought provoking!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ashoo Sofat says:

    Well written, keep it up!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thankyou ma’am!!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. omg thankyou! you’re literally the inspiration

      Liked by 1 person

  3. systemcandidatewe says:

    Nice

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Neharika says:

    Really painful…but it’s important to know about such things..being aware is important..thanks for the information.. written and explained v well..

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thankyou very much!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Quite resourceful and devastating information. Good job. Keep it up.

        Liked by 1 person

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