A monumental human crisis had erupted in the region over past few years. Majority Islamic citizens of Bangladesh encouraged by central authority and military had begun an “ethnic cleansing” of minority Hindu citizens. Millions of people already escaped to neighboring India. Refugee camps had been bursting to seams. But more refugees were still coming. Along came the incessant rain of monsoon adding to misery. Dr. Wang consoled the crying child. She gave her name Krishna Paul.
On a flash, Dr. Wang’s memory of her youth visited her. She was born in Luang Prabang, Laos. In her early teenage years, the country got entangled in the politics of a cold war between two super-powers. Eventually the country was taken over by an ideology-based ruthless regime. Millions would disappear or be systematically massacred for their resistance. Finally fearing for lives, her family decided to flee to a neighboring country. Like Krishna, she would get separated in a moon-less night. An older couple took her under their wings. For next few years, they would move from country to country, finally getting asylum in the US, where the couple would adopt her legally. She flourished in academics in school and college, earning a doctorate degree in political science and eventually landing her current position. That night, Dr. Wang brought Krishna to her own tent. Next day, she handed her over to International Red Cross who flew her to Europe. Later a kind family in Sweden would adopt Krishna.
Recently, Dr. Wang was attending an UN-gala in Vienna honoring Ms. Saira Banu, a Saudi Arabian young woman. Three years ago, Ms. Banu, then a teenager bride had taken bullets in her head for standing against everyday violence imposed by her husband, a member of the royal family. Fortunately she survived. She was air-lifted to Germany where she had undergone extensive treatment and rehabilitation. Then she finished her education and started a global movement for women’s empowerment. To her delight, Dr. Wang noticed a new Krishna, full of self-confidence, was sitting in the front row with other dignitaries, representing her adopted country Sweden in this movement.
Dr. Wang came out of the auditorium, went to the balcony for some fresh air, and looked at the distant west. Across the Atlantic Ocean, the citizens of the US just selected a young lady, born to an Indian mother and a Jamaican father (both immigrants) as the first woman and non-Caucasian Vice President in the continent’s history.