One of the great problems regarding media coverage of war is that we tend to get numb to it. Over time, we can become conditioned to seeing violent images from combat zones, and these pictures no longer stir our emotions.

But the Feb. 21 edition of The New York Times had a front-page photo from war-torn Syria that shook us awake. The photograph showed a little girl, perhaps 8 or 9 years old, who had returned from school to find that her home had been destroyed in an air strike by the Syrian government. Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad has authorized air strikes against his own people in an effort to quash a popular uprising against his brutal regime. In the picture, the little girl’s eyes well with tears as she bears the news of her home’s destruction. We were moved to see that the little girl was wearing a strand of bright beads around her neck that looked like Mardi Gras beads. She would have easily fit in with local carnival celebrations, but her anguish seemed a million miles removed from the frivolity of the recently completed carnival season.

We hope and pray for peace in the Middle East and everywhere around the world. And we look forward to a day in which all children can have lives touched by fun and frivolity, without the shadow of war.