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Time for a public-private trust to assist families of fallen soldiers

Aug 16,2018 - Last updated at Aug 16,2018

Winston Churchill once said: “Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.” Truer words have never been spoken.

The recent tragic events which struck in the cities of Fuheis and Salt are a constant reminder of the threats to our beloved people of Jordan, and of the sacrifices that are made on a daily basis by our men and women in uniform who serve our country. We mourn the loss of those brave Jordanians who made the ultimate sacrifice by giving their lives in the name of goodness and righteousness, with high honour. 

At this sad time, I wish to take a moment to remind the greater Jordanian family at large, as to the challenges that will now follow for the families of these fallen men in uniform. The subject is not foreign to me. For it was nearly 88 years ago that a young police officer of the newly created Arab Legion under Major General Frederick Peake, succumbed to his wounds while enforcing the law in southern Shouneh. That 24-year-old officer was killed while defending the new laws of the Hashemite Emirate of Trans-Jordan under His Majesty King Abdullah I. That young police officer was my grandfather, Subhi Abdullah Al Rashid, who was born and raised in the city of Salt. 

Like the fine young martyrs who recently paid the highest honour one can give for his country, my grandfather Subhi died in uniform. Twelve days later, my father Sabri was born, and when his time came, he too had the honour of serving in the Arab Legion. My father never forgot the honour that his father had paid in service of his beloved country, Jordan.

In these dangerous times, we must not forget the sacrifices that our men and women are making to keep Jordan safe and secure. As citizens, we must all share in the responsibility to assist the families of these martyrs, and by this, we should all reach-out to help the families that are left behind. The time has come for the creation of a public-private trust to be created to offer assistance to the families of our fallen men or women in uniform. Such a trust would allow citizens to offer financial assistance to these families with proper oversight, and this programme could receive seed funding from some of the larger corporations based in Jordan. A board of trustees should handle this account, and scholarships should be created by public and private schools, colleges and universities, free of charge, for the families of the martyrs. 

Make no mistake, financial assistance will never replace the loss that these families have faced and will face in the future. However, this financial assistance will help lessen the burdens that these families will surely face moving forwards. Furthermore, I challenge the Jordan Armed Forces to do more to educate the public about the heroes of our country that have made the ultimate sacrifice for Jordan since the earliest days. Surely, the names of these honourable men and women should be echoed in the halls of all schools, universities and office buildings throughout the land. Roads, schools, streets, airplanes and monuments, should all be named after the martyrs. We should always be reminded of their sacrifices and do what we can to help their families, now and in the future. And of equal importance, as citizens, we should not assume in any way, that someone else will take care of these families. It is our duty and I would encourage everyone to play an honourable role in this endeavour, one way or another. 

There is not a day that goes by that I do not think of my grandfather and the great honour I have to be able to say that he gave his life while wearing the uniform of the Arab Legion.

May God have mercy on the souls of our fallen heroes and give their families the strength needed heal in during this tragic time for our beloved country.

 

The writer is a global policy and business adviser with more than twenty years of experience. He contributed this article to The Jordan Times

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Comments

AN EXCELLENT IDEA AND THIS IDEA HAS ALREADY BEGAN IRBID. I DO SUGGEST THAT ALL COMPANIES IN JORDAN FROM SUPPER MARKETS TO MINISTRIES SHOULD ENCOURAGE VOLUNTARY CONTRIBUTIONS TO HELP THE CHILDREN AND FAMILIES OF THE FALLEN.
IF THIS OPTION IS POSSSIBLE THROUGH JORDAN TIMES, I WILL SURELY CONTRIBUTE.

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