WHAT’S IT LIKE TO LIVE IN A WAR ZONE?

Write about what you love to read but that doesn’t mean you have to LIVE there!
Life imitates Art.
In 2019 I sold everything I owned and began a journey to visit places I’d read and written about. I started in the city known around the world as the place they assassinated John F. Kennedy. Who could forget the book on the Warren Commission? I traveled across the ocean to the home of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. And relaxing on the beaches of Goa, India I read Paulo Coehlo’s Hippie. I celebrated my birthday in a country that’s home to a master spy the great art restorer Gabriel Allon, the covert operative who came in from the cold to run the Office, Israeli Intelligence.  I thought I might live and write in Bali, so after Thailand, I had no return ticket!  But nothing had prepared me for a quick layover in the mysterious historical city of Istanbul exactly one year ago. Instead of Bali, I returned to Istanbul and wrote my own my own mystery,  Code Raven 7,THE ISTANBUL CONSPIRACY. 

   Did you know that part of Istanbul is in Europe but the majority of the city is in Asia? I thought I was living in Europe, and technically geographically, I am. But to make it even more confusing, Turkey is actually in the Middle East! My friends and readers should no longer be surprised by my lifestyle. Somehow I knew that I might find one of the most vibrant cities of the world too intriguing to pass up. So here I am. Coronavirus has hit Iran with a bang, and the border between Turkey and Iran is closed indefinately. Refugees are surging along the highways to get to Europe via the border entry for Greece. And an additional one million frightened and displaced men, women, and children are desperate to escape the violence of war in Syria. The foreign aid can’t begin to cover the poor souls living in appalling conditions along the Syrian/Turkish border. And two days ago Turkey raided and arrested 105 Feto Terrorists in a secretive co-ordinated sweep through the country. How did I find out? Social Media was blocked for several hours. I had a strange feeling about it–I remember reading that Turkey blocked social media during the Coup attempt of 2016. At first, there was no announcement or anything. We all thought our networks were down. But then I found a notice on some obscure news service. I thought blackout might have to do with Turkey’s military action in Syria. But now I’m certain the block was done so communications could not transpire between terrorist groups while Turkey swooped in and grabbed them. So what’s it like living in Istanbul with the COVID-19  border closure on the Iranian side, an angry tear-gas-shooting Border Patrol on the Greek side, and Syria slaughtering its own people in the worst humanitarian crisis since WWII? It’s surreal. To top things off, I live one block from the Bosphorus Strait and I witnessed this two days ago: Russian Warships coming through the strait!! Wait a minute, didn’t the Russian backed Syrian Regime just kill 33 Turkish soldiers in Syria? Just another day in the life of an author when the truth is stranger than fiction. 
Russian Warships passing through the Bosphorus Strait Feb. 28 2020
The ISTANBUL CONSPIRACY free to read on KINDLE UNLIMITED Amazon

Human Rights. Who will speak for those in the caravan?

Screen Shot 2018-11-10 at 8.43.57 AM

Puebla Mexico.

Someone has to speak out for the peoples in the caravans escaping from war-torn brutal violent countries only to find themselves, victims, once more. Yes, call me a bleeding heart; I don’t give a damn! They are human beings just like you and I. The main difference is we get to sit in the comfort of our homes or internet cafes and read about them from a distance.

It’s so easy to ignore their plight, or worse, as in the case of many in the US Administration, to claim they are all rapists and murderers.

But here is what is really happening to those whom no one cares if they live or die:

Reprinted from HP Mexico.com today:

The case of the massive kidnapping of migrants that occurred on November 3 in Veracruz, and that were later turned over to members of organized crime in an unknown place in Puebla, is no longer just the saying of a state ombudsman. Now, it is a case officially investigated by the Attorney General of Puebla, which has evidence of the crime.

In the case file, the Ombudsman for Human Rights of the People of Oaxaca (DDHPO) -a public autonomous body- turned over the testimonies of three witnesses to the kidnapping. One of those people, whose identity remains unknown for their safety, revealed in a sentence the magnitude of what those Central Americans deprived of their freedom in Mexico would be living: “65 children and seven women were sold”.

The new details of the kidnapping suggest that the criminals took advantage of the fact that on the afternoon of November 3, the governor of Veracruz, Miguel Ángel Yunes Linares, withdrew his offer of 150 free trucks so that the caravan would not have to walk to Mexico City. a territory where hundreds have disappeared, a product of the corruption of the municipal police besieged by the war between Los Zetas and the Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generación.

The late announcement of the governor, almost at nightfall, anguished the migrants who would be left out in the open in this dangerous area. Coincidentally, three vehicles arrived to “assist them”: a truck with orange, plate KY 88 765 of the State of Mexico; another, GX 3391C plate from Guerrero; and a truck, plate KXC 7906, according to the investigation.

Unlike the drivers who help the migrants and who use vehicles with the open tray, the box of those trucks was closed with padlocks so that from the outside you could not see what or who was transporting.

We wanted to get to Mexico City quickly, said a woman who is currently in the Ciudad Deportiva shelter in the Mexican capital. A boy dressed in black, chubby, told us that we had to pay 150 pesos. Already by Tierra Blanca, he told us that we had to pay 50 pesos more. We told him that we no longer had money. Passing a bridge and there were eight hooded men. One entered the truck and said that we were all sold. All said: the 65 children and seven women were sold.

These statements coincide with those published today by the veteran journalist Blanche Petrich in the newspaper La Jornada, about the number of children victims of mass kidnapping.

Arturo Peimbert, head of the Ombudsman for Human Rights of the People of Oaxaca, who originally told this story, told HuffPost Mexico on Thursday that he insisted that no one gets into those vehicles, but the desperation and fear of being stranded won to several migrants.

The details of how the witness escaped are not clear. The fear is silenced by some parts of the story, which tomorrow could reach the Attorney General’s Office in the form of a federal complaint.

A second witness of the DDHPO adds more details of what happened that night and says that those responsible would be part of a heavily armed group. The area where they would have been kidnapped is a territory once dominated by Los Zetas.

“We had to walk in front of Tierra Blanca, we usually ordered raite (a free ride) and this is what we did.” A truck stopped, one of those cars was closed and men got out, they were armed and forced many to get on. They went up to about 50, “the statement read.

According to the witnesses, the perpetrators carried long weapons and guarded them all the way to Puebla. Somewhere, near an installation of the Federal Police, the armed commando wanted to change the vehicle victims and there several took the opportunity to flee.

So far, said the ombudsman Arturo Peimbert, nothing is known about the children and women who would be in the power of organized crime. Their fear is that they are victims of illegal activities such as forced labor and sexual exploitation.

Screen Shot 2018-11-10 at 8.44.50 AM

Screen Shot 2018-11-10 at 8.44.10 AM

 


 

About Lynda Filler writes fast-paced page-turners that are based on real-life events happening in the world today. This week she will be in Miami to receive a book award for Contemporary Fiction-Social Issues Lie To Me an exposé on sex for money.

You can find her novels and her memoir on Amazon.

This is the last day for VANISHED in the Sun on sale at .99 cents. It’d dedicated to the Missing 43 Students who commandeered a bus to take part in a march in Mexico City in 2014 and have never been seen since! The UNHRC is still trying to find where their bodies are buried but it’s assumed the bodies have been cremated.