Why does Antoine Leiris' powerful tribute to his wife, killed by ISIS in the Paris attacks, bother me so much?

by nicolaou 37 Replies latest social current

  • nicolaou

    Here is the translation of Monsieur Leiris' words;

    “Friday night, you took an exceptional life - the love of my life, the mother of my son - but you will not have my hatred. I don't know who you are and I don't want to know, you are dead souls. If this God, for whom you kill blindly, made us in his image, every bullet in the body of my wife would have been one more wound in his heart.

    So, no, I will not grant you the gift of my hatred. You're asking for it, but responding to hatred with anger is falling victim to the same ignorance that has made you what you are. You want me to be scared, to view my countrymen with mistrust, to sacrifice my liberty for my security. You lost.

    I saw her this morning. Finally, after nights and days of waiting. She was just as beautiful as when she left on Friday night, just as beautiful as when I fell hopelessly in love over 12 years ago. Of course I am devastated by this pain, I give you this little victory, but the pain will be short-lived. I know that she will be with us every day and that we will find ourselves again in this paradise of free love to which you have no access.

    We are just two, my son and me, but we are stronger than all the armies in the world. I don't have any more time to devote to you, I have to join Melvil who is waking up from his nap. He is barely 17-months-old. He will eat his meals as usual, and then we are going to play as usual, and for his whole life this little boy will threaten you by being happy and free. Because no, you will not have his hatred either.”

    He is clearly articulate and caring. A devoted father and now a man who has tragically lost 'the love of his life'. You'd have to be a heartless monster not to admire him and applaud his determination to raise his son without anger.

    But I felt really uncomfortable with his absolute refusal to respond with hatred and anger. ISIS want to dehumanise us. To them, we are nothing but infidels and apostates, kafir who are deserving of death. If a man is neutered by events so horrific that he cannot feel rage at the slaughter of his beautiful wife what has he become?

    This is NOT a criticism of Antoine Leiris. How can I, from the comfort of my sofa with my wife and daughter safe upstairs possibly criticise or even comprehend what this poor man is going through? Yes, hatred and anger can be overwhelmingly negative but they are a part of our humanity, taking the scalpel to our emotions changes us forever.

    I stand with the brave man, Antoine Leiris and though he probably wouldn't ask for it I'll hate those truly inhuman killers of his wife twice as strongly on his behalf.


  • Miss Worldly
    Miss Worldly
    I cannot add to anything you have said. You said it very well Nic. This heart wrenching, desperately sad, anger provoking story is one that must be being relived 128 more times in France tonight. All I feel I can say, is that, Monsieur Leiris is a very brave man. He is not giving the 'people' that killed his wife what they want, which is the anger. They haven't made him angry. They have not made him fuel his life with hatred. They have made him fill his life with love, love for his wife and love for his son, in turn, his sons life will be full of love. They have failed. Failed to murder the love of a family. My thoughts are with all.
  • bennyk

    The opposite of love is not hatred; the opposite of love is indifference.

    This man loved his wife, but he cannot hate her killers. He is indifferent to them--

    because they are beneath contempt.

  • LoveUniHateExams

    Why does Antoine Leiris' powerful tribute to his wife, killed by ISIS in the Paris attacks, bother me so much?

    Because you're only human. Hatred, fear, outrage and disgust at the Paris massacre and at ISIS are perfectly natural, normal and acceptable. Don't let anyone kid you otherwise.

  • tim3l0rd
    I find his words inspiring. We can choose not to hate. Hate begets hate. I'm not saying that there shouldn't be a military response to those who are responsible, but hating them or living with hate will continue the cycle.
  • nicolaou
    Indifference should be reserved for things that don't matter.
  • Village Idiot
    Village Idiot


    "The opposite of love is not hatred; the opposite of love is indifference."

    I beg to differ. The opposite of love is hatred. Indifference, against the background of those two emotions, is a neutral emotion.

  • oppostate

    He is a better man than I am. All I have for these inhuman, murderous Mohammedans is disgust and loathing.

  • Viviane
    This man is part of the solution, if only there were more like him.
  • Diogenesister

    Nic he can't allow himself the luxury of hating because it would utterly destroy him.

    The problem with all these people is they believe in an after life. If isis knew the truth they would not kill. If Leiris knew the truth he would.

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