THE BLOG
11/04/2014 08:14 am ET Updated Jan 04, 2015

Can the Helpless Bet on Journalists?

A decade and few years working as a journalist taught me few good things. Few but enough to help me pave my way to the truth whenever it's a bit clear for someone like me to see. I went to Libya, Somalia, Syria, Iran, Egypt, Gaza, Sierra Leone, Venezuela, London, Davos, etc... I met heads of states that have everything under their feet, military commanders who drank blood to survive, normal people with simple dreams, victims of wars, and children like Rahma, a 10 yrs old girl in Somalia who had to bury her mother, and continue her walk with her younger sisters from Kismayo to Daddab, the world largest refugee camp located in Kenya. This is the world we are living at, this is the world we journalists are reporting, or maybe on certain occasions covering up for certain reason.

People surviving under certain circumstances, like war, famine, disasters, depend on us to make their stories known by the world, most of them don't really care if they are going to be on TV or quoted by their name on a newspaper or a website, what they are after is their stories to be told. It's the only hope of the helpless, for they still believe that on this universe there might be someone who might care, not for them in person, but maybe for their children, families, community, whoever. Those believe in us, they convinced themselves that we, the journalists, are truthful and that our articles or reports are the best campaign for their just causes, or their dire suffering.

This is what many of us felt when covering stories that are related to people's sufferings, it's maybe a revenge they seek by saying the truth, a compensation for the severe loss they had to pay , a message of hope from the tongue of the hopeless to the ears of a world that is overwhelmed by money, power, and blood.

A couple of years ago I visited Sierra Leone, the country that is nowadays engraved by the Ebola disease. I was there to do some reports on the country's wealth and poverty, power and democracy, the smiling faces of cocoa farmers who never tasted chocolate and the angry behavior of money tycoons who seek more wealth each and everyday. I'm not a stranger in the west African country, I was raised there, and lived more than half my life on its soil, yet I saw what I've never seen before.

Once at a slum shooting for a TV report people's main concern wasn't who i work for, or what kind of TV material i'm to produce, it was only the camera with my crew that drew their attention, they wanted their voiced to be head, it was enough for them to shout and say "We are suffering, help us."

Few thousand kilometers away, on the Lebanese Syrian borders, i met Syrian refugees who shared the same need to shout and scream, it was as if we the journalists are messengers they believed in, even if they knew in the bottom of their mind that their messages might not be aired. They were women and children shouting and screaming for help, with less care towards who'll win or lose in their war struck country, and why should they care anymore as far as they lack security, food, and healthcare, and the most important is that they know that at the end, if an end came to their dilemma, they might fail to survive to witness any parties' glory.
It's the same story wherever, the story of the girl from Somalia, the families at the slum, and the Syrian refugees, they all care less for the political or military outcome, it's all about surviving the moment at its minimum.