2020 Recap: From Pandemic to Protests, Tragedies to Triumphs

2020 was a year that will forever be etched in our memories. While it may have felt like an endless stretch of challenges and uncertainties, there were moments of resilience and hope that shone through the darkness. As we reflect on the events that unfolded, it becomes evident that amidst the overwhelming impact of Covid-19, there were other significant events that shaped the year.

The devastating wildfires that ravaged Australia brought a wave of sorrow as countless animals lost their lives, and the world mourned their tragic fate. Meanwhile, on the other side of the globe, Great Britain’s departure from the EU, known as Brexit, became a stark reality, leading to ongoing negotiations and debates over a new treaty.

In a surprising move, President Erdogan of Turkey opened the borders, allowing refugees to seek shelter in Europe. However, their journey was met with obstacles as they faced resistance from Frontex and the Greek coastguard. Those who managed to reach Europe found themselves confined to overcrowded and inhumane refugee camps, notably the notorious Moria camp on the Greek island of Lesbos. The conditions were dire, with limited resources, constant flooding, and a sense of despair that lingered in the air.

Even amidst a global pandemic, the world witnessed a tragic incident that sparked a movement for justice and equality. The killing of George Floyd by police officers in America sent shockwaves across the globe. The harrowing video of his last moments ignited the flames of the Black Lives Matter movement, prompting widespread protests against systemic racism and police brutality. Statues of historical figures linked to slavery and racism were torn down, and a united front of diverse individuals, especially the youth, raised their voices for change.

In Hong Kong, the implementation of a security law granted China increased control over the once-autonomous region. Despite months of persistent protests, the law remained in place, highlighting the struggle for freedom and autonomy. Meanwhile, in Belarus, allegations of election fraud led to widespread demonstrations against President Lukaschenko, who was accused of being the last dictator in Europe. The protesters faced violent suppression, yet their spirit remained unbroken as they continued to demand change.

Tragedy struck the city of Beirut, Lebanon, when a massive explosion at the port resulted in the loss of many lives and widespread devastation. The shocking video footage of the blast reverberated globally, leaving an indelible mark on our collective consciousness. In Russia, President Putin’s referendum granted him extended power and the potential for a lifetime presidency, raising concerns about democracy and the concentration of power.

In the midst of these tumultuous events, the world witnessed the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the United States, leaving a void in the fight for justice and equality. Additionally, conspiracy theories and anti-lockdown sentiments fueled the rise of anti-corona demonstrations worldwide, highlighting the deep divisions within society.

Amidst the chaos and despair, there were moments of hope. Joe Biden’s victory in the US presidential election brought a sense of relief and a renewed sense of possibility. While challenges and resistance remained, the election marked a turning point for many who yearned for change and progress.

In Scotland, a significant step forward was taken as the government provided free period products, addressing a long-standing issue of inequality and making strides toward a more inclusive society.

As we bid farewell to a year filled with hardship and trials, let us remember the resilience and strength that emerged in the face of adversity. It is through acknowledging the challenges and celebrating the victories that we can move forward with hope, unity, and a collective determination to shape a brighter future.

What have we learned?

2020 was shit, but somehow people still find the strength to get up and fight for their rights, for love for equality for freedom. Someone always helps you to standup, when you are lying on the ground.

What will await us?

We will have to solve the climate issue, real quick. By changing our individual lifestyles, but also the whole transportation-industry and of course the economy. We have to rethink and remodel our capitalistic view on the world and everything within it.

No rules are set in stones, that at least has shown 2020.

Everything is changeable.

I’m looking forward to 2021. I think we are going to change the world, because we have to.There is no plan(et) B, right?

Let the Revolution begin.

Photos by Yousif Al Shewaili