Wednesday, December 20, 2006


We don't need no education !

The events of the last couple of weeks leave no doubts on who is actually running Iraq. Dreamers and chronic optimists may wish and dream, but reality is reality. Things are totally out of control.
What's up ? The usual ; workers were slaughtered, civilians were driven out of their homes , merchants were kidnapped by men in uniform, the red crescent employees were kidnapped in broad day light , bodies were found in the usual places “ alleys and dumpsters”, and in the usual quantities “20-100 every morning” . The novelty this time perhaps, is that schools are out in many areas. Not for Christmas holidays obviously, “I am sure you will be able to reach that deduction alone” .
A couple of weeks ago schools were threatened. Threats were taken seriously after a school in Bab AL Muadham was hit, as a result, thirteen kids were killed with their teacher. So, that did the job, and delivered the message to those reckless parents, who sent their kids to learn in spite of the threats.
Many parents reconsidered their bold attitudes and decided not to tempt fate further . A relative of mine did so, and prevented his kids from going to school .The younger two children were exultant with this decision, it was like a dream coming true for them . They get to stay at home and play endlessly, and Mom and Dad actually don’t mind!. Now how about that ? , but the older one understood that it is her future in stake here , She cried for two whole days, trying to convince her parents to let her go . You see “she has a dream” !!!
The school in our neighborhood was no exception. The kids were sent home at noon two weeks ago, following a panic attack after -as I heard- men in masks were seen heading to their school . The school guard ran to the headmistress, who tried to keep it a secret and deal with the issue calmly , but the guard was to fast for her, and he managed in a fraction of a second to spread the news all over the school . He was faster than fire spreading in dry leaves . The girls panicked and the teachers were even worse than the girls. So,the headmistress lost her temper and sent them all home , without even bothering to organize them . Just; ‘Go girls go!!!’ .
The next day a girl from next door told us that the "Zoros" were actually from some militia and had come with a proposition for the unfortunate headmistress . They offered her protection . She refused , and that was the last I heard, cause our young source never went to school again after that incident, Her parents thought "and I agree with them" , that if the militias were getting involved , things are grim already… Some schools resumed their schedule later, but with much less children. The position of the government, or whoever is in charge is clear on this matter ; If a child is willing to take a risk so let it be. He or she i.e. the children will be held fully responsible if something is to happen .
Also, at the beginning of last week , at about 3 o’clock in the morning , I woke up on loud speaker calls from the local mosque. I do not have to mention, that the electricity for the last two or three months has been limited to an hour every 24, and even during that hour there are cuts . Electricity, what a sweet word ….oh I remember what it felt like… God bless you Thomas Edison. I know you meant well , but it was a dark hour, when you invented it . I wish I never knew electricity in my life . It is better to never have known something, than know it and watch it being taken away from you. So I woke up and grabbed my torch light and directed it to the alarm clock , it wasn’t dawn so why the calls ?. Strange and spooky.
I peered out of my window. It was pitch dark, but there were no signs of the apocalypses. You see, my Grandmother used to tell me when I was a kid , that when the time of the apocalypses eventually comes, the call of Allah Akbar would be heard all over the universe , “even if it was not time for praying !”. And, that the angel Israfeel , would be seen in the sky , as big as the sky itself, blowing his horn announcing the end of the world . I could not hear no horn nor could I see Israfeel, so no Granny it won't be tonight I suppose . It was just the Imam’s angry voice, followed by loads of shots . It continued for about an hour. The next day I knew, that the police were trying to search the mosque, so the Imam was calling the locals for help, thinking that the militias were coming to get him . The locals came with guns, sticks and stones of course .
And at the beginning of this week I heard the same calls at the same time, cause some gang was shooting or something. I think the Imam liked what happened the last time a bit . This time his voice sounded more relaxed. So now what ? every time someone is just crossing the road in front of his mosque, or someone is coming for religious consultation , he will jump to his feet , wrap his cloak around himself , skip up to his pulpit , take his microphone and start. If I were him, I would not push it to far, or else, when there is real danger no one will turn up .
In fact many people in Baghdad have been resorting to these “peace preserving pacts”, according to which, neighbors agree to call each other in case of danger . Mostly by shooting from the roofs and shouting . But, since there is no electricity, and when I say no I mean no. I think these pacts should be modified , I suggest igniting a fire in the garden or on the roof, so your neighbors can actually find you .

I went to a shop the other day, and when I was waiting to be served the only thing I could hear people talking about was ; getting out of the country. The Topics of the day were ; immigration, one hundred and one ways to acquire humanitarian asylum, the shortest and the cheapest methods to clear off etc …. , and the issue here is not where to , but how to . I even heard that there are Iraqis in Chechnya, and in the north pole!. The big melt does not scare us, no Sir .

One of my friends called me and said : Are you still there ?, I can not believe you, what are you waiting for ? get out , there won't be anyone left soon , only you.
- Yeh , that is true, anyway don’t you worry. I’ll lock up behind me when I leave .


Blogger Sang J. Moon said...

And then we hear about children in Fallujah going to school with brand new backpacks and school supplies:

And then we hear that the Iraqi economy is booming:

Things are bad, but how much of it is fear and how much of it is reality? How much of the perceived fear will dissipate when people take the step to pursue hope? What will make people decide to be the ram instead of the sheep? But who are we Americans to talk. It only took two snipers to paralyze the entire city of Washington DC.

8:55 AM  
Anonymous Solo said...

You won't be the last one left I.R.It's the quiet strength that wins.

7:58 PM  
Anonymous The Iraqi Roulette said...

Sang J. Moon
Thanks for your comment .

I agree with you on the last part of your comment. You can never say that you really know a situation, unless you have lived in it . If Washington DC was paralyzed by two snipers , that may give you an idea, cause in Baghdad there is a sniper , a kidnapper and car bomb at every street turn .
Although, I can not say I agree that all this situation is a result of some mass hallucination, and every Iraqi is running around with imaginary ghosts chasing him . Every Iraqi, including yours truly has had a near death experience and has lost a relative or a friend. Of course , one can say that war is tough and bad things just happen , and also one may say that ends justify means , one can also draw a philosophic parallel and say, that wars are just like earth quakes and floods . Also I don't agree on blaming the people for not being a ram instead of a sheep , This is just like blaming the poor for being poor or blaming someone for getting cancer . Most of us here do not have a choice , I understand that there may be some divine or satanic plans, that just have to be carried out, and these plans are so complicated that we mortals just can not figure them out . But, until these plans are accomplished at least let me say that it hurts, not blaming anyone I am just saying that it hurts ,which should be interesting you know, cause individual experiences no matter how insignificant they may seem in the context of evolution, are actually what literature is all about .

Thanks for reading

Solo ,
Thanks for your comments . I really look forward to them :)

1:27 AM  
Anonymous Solo said...

I.R., well it is Christmas morning here. A time for peace, joy, and goodwill towards all. I can't send a gift except for wishes for peace in the coming year, a positive outlook for the future, growing friendships, and a smile :-)

8:38 AM  
Anonymous at the discretion of the soul said...

" big as the sky itself, blowing his horn announcing the end of the world." I like the visuals you evoke. What writers most inspire you?

10:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

تويتر شعر انستقرام ضحك انستقرام شيلات

10:19 AM  

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