Thursday, January 17, 2008

The View from Baghdad

Since I've become a regular at Sunshine's site, her blog roll led me right to the home of another subversive Iraqi blogger, Mohammed. Grimly entitled, Last-Of-Iraqis, Mohammed's profile is enough to cause your heart to break:



I'm a 25 years old dentist [and] I live in Iraq (Baghdad). I was born and raised here but unfortunately I'm thinking that the Iraqis are going to [become] extinct. [S]o I made this blog wishing that I can make a difference or even share my grief with the whole world and give them an idea about what's happening here from the point of view of a civilian living in the war zone. [N]ot from the politicians nor people who get their benefits from the conditions.

After reading a few of Mohammed's blog entries, I was both moved by his raw candor and horrified as I could sense his deep anguish as he detailed the rapid disintegration of his country. In "Deterioration," Mohammed writes:

The most painful feeling you can have is when you see your neighborhood on the verge of destruction, the deepest sorrow is when you watch the place where you lived all your life and where you dreamed to live being raped by criminals!

I am honestly at a loss for words.

Living in the comfort of a Canadian, middle-class bubble, I watch the news at my own leisure and casually surf through the channels as Canada and America's version of the war appear as ubiquitously as those groovy I-Pod commercials. If I get sick of watching the men and women in combat shooting their M16s or rocket-propelled grenades, or seeing the catastrophic aftermath of yet another suicide bomber, my own trigger finger can just as easily allow me to escape to a world of CSI and American Idol....

But for Mohammed, their is NO escape. All he has to do is drive down his block to be confronted by the bullets and bombshells firsthand. Imagine, even just for a moment, that this is your life:


I was driving my car in my neighborhood streets while listening to the radio...I reached the side street and I saw the most horrible thing a man can see, there was a car(Kia minivan) escaping and two men shooting at us from it, half of their body was out of the window and they were shooting at us (me and the neighbors) and there were two men on the sidewalk, drowned in their blood, I wanted to follow them but then I remembered I don't have a gun or any weapon what will I do?
What would any of us do if faced with such unbelievable terror?

Meanwhile, CNN or MSNBC or FOX wave their euphemistic wands and let us know that "US-led forces continue to battle a determined insurgency" or when " U.S., Turkish Military Officials Try for Better Communications Following Weekend Bombing in Iraq." Remember the time when Bush insisted, "that to step back from Baghdad would have disastrous consequences in America"?? It's good to know that the war machine is just as strong at home as it is abroad....

While the American primaries are underway and each of the potential candidates spin their platforms on Iraq like it was Charlotte's Web, let me leave you with Mohammed's New Year's wish for 2008:

[A]s a new year begins, I wish peace will get back to the streets of Baghdad and Iraq in general, i wish that Iraqis could live like the rest of the world do, I wish that fanatics, terrorists, insurgents.....etc. call them whatever you want disappear, I just wish they disappear, I wish that anyone who wants to harm any human being disappear from the face of the earth, I wish the violence and the hatred in Iraq will go and be from the past....

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family, Mohammed.


4 comments:

Divinyl said...

Great post BB...sounds like a very thought-provoking blog and a eral reality trip.

It is another world isn't it? Or, at least, it is all too easy to believe it is! Sounds like we all should be reading these people's truths.

--Bamboo Blitz-- said...

Thanks for the kind props, divinyl! Yes, the "blogosphere" is definitely a powerful medium for expression, and it enables individuals (living under these horrific conditions) to tell THEIR stories....

obscurio said...

Is there an Iraq?
Is there an Iraqi people?
Your blog has raised many questions for me, thank you. i'd like to point you towards a documetary that i watched on bbc four. it is still available @ 'bbc.co.uk/iplayer' search for STORYVILLE Iraq in fragments. it's a moving portrait of the lives of real people that we call Iraqi. (((O)))

--Bamboo Blitz-- said...

Obsurio, thanks for spending time at my little ol' blog! I will make sure to check out the documentary you had mentioned....

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