Jo Cox: A fallen shero

I just found out that the British MP Jo Cox succumbed to her injuries. And this reminds me all too much about the similar fate the Swedish minister for foreign affairs Anna Lindh met. She was stabbed in broad daylight and later succumbed to her injuries. This was during the referendum regarding adopting the Euro.

I was in 7th grade at the time I believe, but her death is seared into my memory. I remember our Swedish teacher bursting into our classroom during a science class and telling us that she died. We were all hoping she’d pull through.

She was the last in a group of truth warriors for lack of a better word. She followed in the steps of Olof Palme who was also assassinated for his fiery revolutionary spirit ; his champion of the revolutionaries of Cuba and Cambodia, his no holds barred criticism of the neo-imperialist agendas of the Western powers, his sweeping reforms of the Swedish constitution that still stand till this day, though they are starting to wither away.

And like Anna Lindh, Jo Cox was a renowned humanitarian and she fought relentlessly for the Syrian refugees and was a resolute idealist who fought for humanity and championed for women.

Here’s an excerpt  from a recent HuffPost op-ed she wrote about her reason for abstaining from the vote on UK military intervention in Syria to fight ISIS. Note her conscientious approach and moral uprightness;

” As someone who cares deeply about Syria, who has campaigned on the issue before entering parliament, who has pushed for more resolute action at every stage, it is with regret that I feel I have no other option but to abstain on this evening’s vote. 

I say regret because I’ve always thought abstaining on key debates was due to one of three things; a cowardly opt out designed to avoid accountability, a case of chronic and unacceptable indecision or the judgement to place political positioning over conviction.

So I have thought long and hard before deciding that I have no other choice. The reason is simple, I’m not against airstrikes in principle. In fact as part of an integrated strategy for Syria they are almost certainly a necessary part. But airstrikes are a tactic not a strategy and outside a strategy I fear they will fail.

[…] I have long argued that Isis and Assad are not separate problems to be chosen between, but are action and reaction, cause and symptom, chicken and egg, impossible to untangle no matter how much we might like to. The brutality of Assad (who has killed seven times the number of civilians as Isis) has helped nurture Isis and been its main recruiting sergeant. As such they can only be addressed together, as part of a coherent strategy.

The Prime Minister has compounded this for me by positioning the strategy as “Isis first”, like we are picking from a menu of independent variables. First we’ll deal with Isis and then we’ll come back to Assad. Wars don’t work like this. Indeed, by refusing to tackle Assad’s brutality we may actively alienate more of the Sunni population, driving them towards Isis.”

End of.

I honestly did not know of her before today but seeing an honest revolutionary depart aches my heart because now there’s more room for the echoes of evil and egos to reverberate.

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