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When the Violence Breaks You

Abdul Bassit after surviving an explosion in Syria that took both his legs (Twitter)

There is a video of an 8-year-old boy in Syria lying on the ground, moments after an alleged airstrike. His legs are gone, blown off at the knees.  

His mother is dead. His sister is dead.

I watched yesterday… and as shocking as it was, I could almost handle it. Until he started crying, “Pick me up, daddy. Pick me up.”

A Look Inside the Aleppo Kitchen Where You are Feeding Thousands

At this point, there are few people on earth who don’t know there’s a crisis in Syria.

Swipe your screen for a front row seat to years of Syrian families running, wailing, suffering. Then, when it surely couldn’t get worse, the crisis reached a horrible apex: hundreds of thousands fled a burning Aleppo, and the world seemed to wake up—if just for a few minutes—to the fact that “their” crisis “over there” is somehow ours, too.

“We Must Teach Our Children to Hate Weapons” - One Mosul Father’s Plea

“Most of the children, when ISIS ruled, they loved weapons. They saw weapons. We saw too many kids carrying weapons. It’s heartbreaking, believe me.”

As I listened to this man, sipping tea in his home deep inside Mosul, gunfire and falling bombs in the background, I remember the sounds around me more than anything. The sofa creaked, tiny spoons clinked against teacups, and the unsettling thunder of war a few blocks away.

Bringing Peace and Healing to Families' Hearts

Every mama’s heart aches when her child is sick. It’s so hard to see them suffer and not know what’s going on, or how to help.

For some mamas, it’s extra hard. When Yossef came down with the flu at two months old, he was taken to see a doctor in Iraq. The doctor diagnosed not only the flu but something much more concerning—there was a serious problem with his heart.

They Can't Escape Mosul, So Your Love Is Reaching Them

If you’ve been with us awhile, chances are you’ve read those words before: you just provided food for thousands of families on the front lines!

And it’s true, you did.

Families in Aleppo, Fallujah, and Mosul are dining today because you helped cover the bill. You heard them, came alongside them in their suffering, you gave—and our teams used that money to buy aid in bulk, load trucks, slog through checkpoints, and then deliver that food to thousands of families.

It’s exciting, right?

But what about when it isn’t?

The Girl Who Escaped Death Twice

Jobs disappeared.

That’s what drove Yaqin’s family from Mosul, Iraq. It was 2014 and the early days of ISIS in the city. Life was beginning to get difficult—the rules for living changed, tightened, but it was still manageable, except for the fact that paid work became scarce. Yaqin’s father couldn’t support his family, so they made the decision to leave.

It was a decision that saved Yaqin’s life.

4 Things You Should Know About Refugees and Terrorism

The debate over refugees is showing no signs of letting up.

This week, the courts temporarily suspended President Trump’s executive order, while the White House mulled a range of options, from a Supreme Court challenge to writing a new order. In these situations, it can be so easy to talk past one another. But the reality is that the issues are often more nuanced—and far more complex—than sound bites and 140-character limits allow for.

ISIS Attacks Kill 9 in Mosul Neighborhoods Where You're Providing Food and Medical Care

Iraqi soldier in eastern Mosul, near a medical clinic you're helping refurbish. Today, ISIS launched suicide attacks in this part of the city.

From Rudaw Media Network: 

Two suicide bombings have struck the left bank [eastern side] of Mosul, killing at least nine, including an Iraqi army officer, and injuring others, an intelligence source with the Iraqi army told Rudaw.

The Uncomfortable, Controversial Reality of Loving Across Enemy Lines

It's no secret that the U.S. is extraordinarily divided at this moment in history and that many of us wish for greater unity. But lately, there seems to be a rash of people calling for unity while using inflammatory language about those who disagree with them.

And it made me wonder: Do we really want unity? Or do we just want everyone to agree with us?

Because unity doesn’t require agreement.

From Heart Surgery Patient to Future Pilot: Falah's Story

This week is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week. In addition to serving refugees on the front lines of conflict, you've helped provide lifesaving cardiac care for hundreds kids in Iraq, Libya, and other countries—kids who have no other way of getting the care they need. Recently, your love showed up in southern Iraq for kids like Falah. 

When Falah closes his eyes, he sees himself high above the clouds, in the cockpit of a fighter jet. When he imagines his future self, he is a pilot who helps to defend his country from the forces which seek to destroy.

But the last time we met Falah, he was lying in a hospital bed, recovering from the surgery that saved his life.

Read the blog at Preemptive Love Coalition
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