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Artichoke: A wider story

By Melissa Hekkers

I’m probably not the only one sitting on the edge of my seat whilst I listen to political developments – not just in our neighbouring countries, but globally, as far as North Korea and America.

A break-out of war doesn’t seem so much impossible all of a sudden; I find myself debating where everything will begin more often these days. Will things erupt in Turkey, Iran, Syria or Iraq? Or will we be looking out further to North Korea and the US?

What’s for sure is that our little island is rather close to all this. Not that its proximity to Syria has ever been left unthought-of.

Just the other day I found myself on the shores of Larnaca thinking how fortunate we all were at the prospects of the Mediterranean sun going down on our golden beaches and the majesty this offers us – even as, some hundreds of kilometres across the sea, some of the most atrocious human atrocities were taking place.

I very recently had the fortune, if one may call it so, to watch Feras Fayyad’s documentary, Last Men in Aleppo. I say ‘fortune’ with unease, for although this explicit documentary of the current life in Aleppo should be a must-see for everyone, to get a sense of what is really going on across those few hundreds of kilometres, the reality explored is heartbreaking.

My eyes filled with tears on a couple of occasions, while a guilt I had nowhere to address overtook my thoughts. It is the pure representation of Aleppo and its people that drives the movie, and it’s fascinating how the director weaves in the stories and subtle words of his subjects, which almost effortlessly tell the wider story.

A wider story that could potentially be retold if our leaders are not super careful.

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