Two Moms (video)

Phyllis Rodriguez' son was killed in the World Trade Center attacks; Aicha el-Wafi's son was convicted of having a role in those attacks. Now, these two mothers have come together in their shared loss to spread a powerful message of compassion. 

In this moving TED Talk video, Phyllis Rodriguez and Aicha el-Wafi tell the story of how their lives intersected over their shared grief, and how they have since united in friendship. Theirs is a message of true compassion and understanding that is an example for us all.

"Our suffering is equal. Yet I'm treated with sympathy; she is treated with hostility." –  Rodriguez on el-Wafi

About the video From

Phyllis Rodriguez is an artist, a teacher and a social justice activist. On September 11, 2001, her son Greg died in the attacks on the World Trade Center. Rodriguez and her husband wrote an open letter, "Not in Our Son's Name," calling on President Bush to oppose a military response in Afghanistan.

Aicha el-Wafi is an activist with the French feminist group Ni Putes Ni Soumise, working with Muslim women. Her son, Zacarias Moussaoui, was tried in relation to the attacks on U.S. soil, and faced the possibility of execution if convicted.

In November 2002, Phyllis Rodriguez and several other relatives of victims of the attacks were invited to meet Aicha el-Wafi. Rodriguez and el-Wafi have since appeared together throughout Europe and the U.S., telling their story of reconciliation and forgiveness.