Monday, May 31, 2004

Dallas Morning News Article

Last Friday, I received a phone call from Rod Dreher at The Dallas Morning News to write an article about the Iraqi bloggers. I gladly did so. You can find the newspaper article on page 11A of the main section in Viewpoints on Tuesday, June 1, 2004. I tried to keep it short even though I was offered more space.

I'm not sure they'll publish it at If they do, I'll link it to this post.

Arabic Word of The Post:

newspaper  : جريدة - / je-ree-DA /
newspapers : جرائد - / je-RA-'ed /

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day everyone.

I never understood the meaning of this day to the American people till this year. I think this year feels more special to me, or maybe America is replacing Australia as my country. I've been here for three years. During the first few years, these national holidays meant nothing to me. I had to search and learn about them as I did with the Australian national holidays. By the time I learned Australia's holidays, I moved to another country.

I've been really good adjusting to the continuous changes in my life during the last 10 years. I hope I don't have to do it again. I love this country. It's not a perfect country. But, its people keep trying to improve it. They've been working on building their democratic system for the last 200 years. That tells me Iraq has a long way to go before it could form the type of democracy which may suit its culture and ethnic groups.

One reader told me "Democracy is a mess but it's fun." I have to agree with him. I think Iraqis have learned the messy part. I hope they reach the joy and fun part on their way to achieve it.

Have I given up on Iraqis? No. I still think they can create a political system to fit their needs. I hope I'm right.

Arabic Word of The Post:
day  : يوم - / yowm /
days : أيام - / ay-YAm /

Saturday, May 29, 2004

You're Fired

We've heard lately about Jack Vergis, a the French lawyer who would represent Saddam in his trial. Seems like even Raghad, Saddam Hussein's eldest daughter, doesn't want to deal with the French anymore. She said in a statement from Amman, Jordan:
Vergis does not represent the father because his way and policy in defending does not comply with us and the defendant committee we had formed.

Vergis, you're fired!

Honestly, I have no hard feeling toward Saddam's daughters. They were victims as any other Iraqi who lived under Saddam's regime. I hope the best for them.

My husband likes to make fun of me for saying everyone is nice and beautiful in my eyes. And yes, I like France too. It's a very beautiful country. I've been to it twice and would love to visit again. I also worked with few Frenchmen during my last job. They were nice and helpful. I guess I'm a lucky person, or I'm having a good day. I think the world became a better place after I watched Disney's cartoon movie "Beauty and The Beast: The Enchanted Christmas" this afternoon.

Arabic Word of The Post:

beautiful : جميل - / 'je-meel /

Seven Iraqis Given Gift of Humanity - Update II

The story of the seven Iraqi men, who had their hands amputated by Saddam's orders in 1995, is gaining momentum in the media. C-SPAN dedicated a 38 minutes segment to an interview with Don North, the producer of "Remembering Saddam." The documentary "Remembering Saddam" tells the story of those seven Iraqi men. Unfortunately, Don North can't find an American TV channel willing to discuss broadcasting it.

Don North is a freelance journalist who covered many war zones since the Vietnam war. He spent $100,000 to cover the Iraq war and produce this documentary. He said he used his son's education money to cover the expenses. He made fun of himself during the interview by saying he's not a good marketer. This problem faces many talented people in any profession.

You could watch "Remembering Saddam" and Q & A session with the seven Iraqi men at this link. Thanks Jason for the link.

Arabic Word of The Post:

problem  : مشكلة - / moosh-keela /
problems : مشاكل - / meshA-kil /

Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Ways To Help The Iraqi People

I frequently receive e-mails from readers asking me how to help the Iraqi people. I'm trying to assemble a list of organizations that can help deliver your gifts and donations. If you know of any other organizations, please let me know about them. I'll list them here.

  • Operation Iraqi Children - The program was founded by actor Gary Sinise (Forrest Gump, Apollo 13) and author Laura Hillenbrand (Seabiscuit: An American Legend). It will enable Americans to send school supply kits to Iraqi children.

    In a special message to Operation Iraqi Children donors, from founders Gary Sinise and Laura Hillenbrand, they both state:
    When we first got together and began talking about founding a program to support Iraqi children, we didn't know what to expect. As dedicated as we were to our mission, we knew that no matter how hard we worked, the success of our program would depend entirely upon the will of the American public to support it. From our research, we knew that there was a wellspring of citizens who were searching for a way to reach out to Iraqi children, but we had no idea if that wellspring was deep and broad enough to bring the kind of massive support that the children of Iraq would need to have the opportunity to thrive. We decided to gamble on the idea that we would find that support, and we created Operation Iraqi Children.

    I'm a big fan of Gary Sinise, which make me very happy to see him helping the Iraqi children and schools.

  • Iraqi Schools - Their Web site is very organized and easy to browse.

  • Operation Give - I'm sure many of you heard of Chief Wiggles and his campaign to deliver toys to the Iraqi children. Even though he's back in the United States, his project still continues.

  • Help Iraqi Higher Education - Thanks ManInTheShadow for your help.

Since I gave you a headache going through the above links, here's a baklava recipe you may like to try. It's delicious.

Arabic Word of The Post:

project  : مشروع - / mesh-roo'A /
projects : مشاريع - / meshA-ree'a /

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Thank You Buckeye State

An Iraqi infant girl with a possibly fatal growth in her neck, has arrived in Columbus, Ohio for free treatment.

The story as reported by the Associated Press takes these lines:
Fatemah was blue when she arrived at the base last month, and it took doctors three days to stabilize her, The Columbus Dispatch reported.

One doctor, Lt. Col. Todd Fredricks of Ohio, contacted Children's Hospital in Columbus, which decided it would treat Fatemah at no cost if she could get there.

Rep. Ted Strickland, D-Ohio, and Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., helped with visas for the infant and her 21-year-old mother, Beyda'a Amir Abdul Jabar.

The 445th Airlift Wing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base arranged travel to Columbus.

They arrived late Wednesday aboard a converted military cargo plane and spent the night at the hospital.

As I always say, please pray for the success of the surgery to remove the baby's tumor.

Again, thank you Buckeye State for your help. Thanks Brad for the hint.

Arabic Word of The Post:

hospital  : مستشفى - / mus-tesh-fA /
hospitals : مستشفيات - / mus-tesh-fayat /

Thursday, May 20, 2004

Free To Dream

If you've started reading the Iraqi blogs since Salam PAX started his war dairy, you probably read Gaith's blog too. Gaith stopped writing in his blog in August of 2003. BUT, he's back writing a biweekly column for The Guardian.

I'm so happy to see him writing again as I'm a big fan of Gaith. I read what has been published so far on The Guardian. The column I liked the most is titled "We wanted this war so desperately." He starts this column by saying:
Lying in bed, I was planning my suicide. I had only one dream in my life - to travel, to walk, to see different people and different cultures - and nothing seemed more impossible than this dream in the Iraq of our beloved leader, Saddam Hussein. I was the world's most underpaid architect, doing ugly work for ugly people who had money to build ugly houses. Dodging military service for almost six years meant that I had no documents in a country where you had to submit five different types of papers to get yourself a food ration. Apart from walking the old streets of Baghdad, getting drunk with my friend and reading, there was no way to free myself. I was trapped in this small room with no exit, not even a light at the end of the tunnel.

Then he takes us into a trip into his life after the collapse of Saddam's regime.

He ends this column by saying:
Do I regret the war, especially now that things seem to be moving towards chaos here? Not at all. I still think we are much better off than under Saddam. At least now we are free to dream.

We can dream. You read or feel these three words on Firas, Ays, the three brothers and other Iraqi blogs. You can feel the energy flowing when reading these blogs.

Under Saddam, we had no dreams. We only had nightmares of wars, which still haunt me even though I left Iraq 10 years ago.

After Saddam, everyone could dream. When you dream, you know you are alive. When you dream, every moment of life is worth a fortune.

Under Saddam, we had no tongues. We were silent ghosts. We couldn't trust the people around us including us, who live thousands of miles away from Iraq.

After Saddam, we have tongues. We have freedom of speech. We have scores of newspapers. We have more than 40 blogs that range from extreme left to extreme right.

Under Saddam, salaries were so little that many people had to sell their jewelry, furniture and any other item of value to bring food to the table. If you had a family member with a heart living outside Iraq, then you could count on them to send you money that would help with your living expenses.

After Saddam, most people are paid so well where they don't need to find an extra job to feed their families.

The only thing missing is security. That will improve when Iraqi police forces put Iraqis' lives before their clans ties.

Things get worse before they get better. I hope everyone can see the light at the end of the tunnel. These days, the road looks darker even for the most optimistic people in Iraq and America.

Let's pray for a better future for the Iraqis who could dream and live up to their dreams.

Arabic Word of The Post:

dream  : حلم - / 'Hilm /
dreams : أحلام - / a'H-laam /

Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Talented Iraqi Artists

I know everyone is nervous lately. That's normal. There are less than 50 days left for the hand over of sovereignty to the Iraqi people. There are six months left until the American election. These two things are making everyone nervous including myself.

So, let's have a break and look at some of the Iraqi sites I've discovered lately.

Elite Porcelain Art - This is a beautiful site of Sundus, an Iraqi woman artist. Sundus immigrated to Canada in 1990 with her husband and kids. She has achieved recognition for her contribution to the international art communities in Italy, Germany and Saudi Arabia. Her site includes examples of her porcelain work. It also lists her awards in this field. Thanks Hani for the link.

ayagallery - This gallery is located in London, UK. It hosts the art work of many known Iraqi artists. If you're into art, you would like the photos of their art pieces on the Web site.

Ala Bashir - If you're an Iraqi you probably recognized the name. Ala Bashir is the No. 1 cosmetic surgeon in Iraq. He also happens to be an artist who won many national and international awards for his art work. The Web site is under construction. Hopefully, it will be complete very soon.

I hope you enjoyed this refreshing break.

Arabic Word of The Post:

Art  - فن - / feN /
Arts - فنون - / 'f-noon /

Monday, May 17, 2004

The Price of Freedom

I woke this morning to news of the assassination of the chief of Iraqi Governing Council. First thing I did was check the Iraqi bloggers inside Iraq. Omar had already posted on this subject. He said what every freedom-loving Iraqi person would say. Here's the best part of his post:
Are we sad? Yes of course, but we're absolutely not discouraged because we know our enemies and we know their ways and we decided to go in this battle to the end. They think they can force us to give up but they're totally mistaken. I've tasted freedom, my friends and I'd rather die fighting to preserve my freedom before I find myself trapped in another nightmare of blood and oppression.

During the last few days, I came to the conclusion that the new Iraq worries many parties in the Middle East. If "Operation Iraqi Freedom" was a failure, why are we seeing all these terrorist groups trying to destroy the new Iraq?

More interesting news is the nerve agent sarin found in a shell that exploded in Iraq. I know many people want to believe there were NO WMD in Iraq as this would disprove their pessimistic theories. I still believe we need to look inside Iraq's neighboring countries. We need to find what weapons were moved there before March 2003. Otherwise how does anyone explain the truck found in Jordan a few weeks ago, which was carrying 20 tons of chemical explosives?

Arabic Word of The Post:

weapon : سلاح - / see-LAA'H /
weapons: أسلحة - / es-lee-'HAA /

Saturday, May 15, 2004

Seven Iraqis Given Gift of Humanity - Update I

You may remember the story of the seven Iraqi guys, who had their hands amputated. Their foreheads were also scarred between their eyebrows. What is the reason? One of these silly reasons Iraqi people would be arrested for during Saddam's era.

The Wall Street Journal published more details of their story. Thanks to Dave for the link.

I wonder how many torture stories will unfold in the future. Everyday I discover a new cannibalism behavior by Saddam. Here's the latest from the WSJ report:
The imputations were performed, over two days, by a Baghdad anesthesiologist, a surgeon and medical staff. We know this because Saddam had a videotape made of each procedure. He had the hands brought to him in formalin and then returned to Abu Ghraib. Oh, one more thing: The surgeon carved an X of shame into the forehead of each man. And the authorities charged the men $50.

What kind of movies did Saddam watch? If not, what kind of mind did he have? He would have made a fortune writing scripts for Halloween movies.

Now to the sad part of the story. TV news producer Don North made every effort to bring these guys to the United States for treatment. He managed to bring them for treatment in the United States. He also made a documentary film on their story, BUT he can't find any broadcast or network station willing to air his film.

TV Stations have time to air daily talk shows about Michael Jackson, Robert Blake and other Hollywood stars, but can't find a slot for this documentary. That's really sad.

Arabic Word of The Post:

Hand : يد   -  yed  / yed /
Hands: أيادي   -  'aYAdee  / 'a-YA-dee /

Thursday, May 13, 2004

Who Is The Enemy?

I guess many people want to know my reaction to the murder of Nick Berg. I wanted to cool down before I wrote. I may seem more American than Australian or Middle Eastern because I am. I can't find enough words to say. I didn't want to watch the video from that Islamic Web site. I told my husband just going to that Web site and giving them another hit would make them feel more powerful. A feeling I don't want them to enjoy.

We're fighting an enemy who want to see many of us dead. You must believe it. See what they're doing in Iraq to the Muslim Iraqis. I have Muslim friends, and I could tell you that these criminals don't represent Islam. They represent a psycho cult. They deeply believe their sick acts are right.

For those who want to understand death and bravery, I couldn't find a better piece than the one written by Gibran Kahlil Gibran describing death. It's from Gibran Kahlil Gibran's book "The Prophet."

I extend my condolences to his family and hope Nick rests in peace.

Arabic Word of The Post:

criminal : مجرم - mojrim / moj-rim /
criminals: مجرمين - mojrimeen / moj-ri-meen /

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Iraqi Soccer Team Qualifies For Athens Olympics

We have more good news today. The Iraqi soccer team qualified for the Athens Olympics.

Olympic games are about participation. If the Iraqi Olympic team comes back with a medal, it would be great. If they don't come back with any medal, we're still happy for their participation in this international sports event.

Hey, they don't need to worry about Uday's torture if they come back with empty hands. Isn't this one more reason to be happy for them?

Arabic Word of The Post:

team : فريق - feree'que / fe-ree'que /

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Injured Basrawi Students And Other News

Today, I called my aunt who lives in Basrah. I asked her about the female students who were injured during the last terror attack in Basrah. She told me they're doing well. The girls left the hospital. She told me a few of them may need cosmetic surgeries for the scars on their faces. Otherwise, they're in a good shape.

So, thanks for everyone's prayers for these girls. Our prayers were answered.

I asked my cousin, "How are the fundamentalists doing these days?" She said they're still trying to control the city and Al-Sistani photos are all over the city. I asked her jokingly if she has to wear a hijab when leaving the house. She said, "Not yet. But hey, if things go the way they're going now, then I'll have to wear one in the future."

When I asked them whom they think is responsible for these acts of terror. They were certain most of the terror acts are carried out by foreigners from Syria, Iran and other countries.

I'm sure there are Iraqis involved in these terror operations. But, it's obvious to everyone that foreigners are playing a big role in boiling the security situation in Iraq.

My other cousin -- from a different aunt --, whose husband is a doctor in Falluja for the last 15 to 20 years, has bought a house in Dehuk. They are moving to live in Dehuk for safety reasons. It wasn't her choice to live in Falluja. Her husband was transferred to the city under Saddam's regime. They left the city after last month's siege on the city. It seems like the Kurdish part of Iraq is the best place to live these days. I have an interesting family, don't I?

Another peculiar piece of news from Iraq. My friend's aunt, who was fired from her job during the 80s and temporarily jailed for her political views, has returned to her job. Not only returned to her job, the new government added those years to her service. Now, she has a well paid job after many years of suffering.

The only common complaint is about the security situation. Otherwise, people have good salaries, which enables them to buy new appliances and furniture for their homes. Yes, many people had to sell their furniture, home appliances and gold to make a living during the last 20 years.

Would some Iraqis see the bright side of Iraq's future? I hope so.

Arabic Word of The Post:

terror : إرهاب - irhAb / ir-hAb /

Saddam's Trial

America will hand over Saddam, Chemical Ali and others to America before June 30th, 2004. This is the good news of the day.

Since I heard that Salem Chalabi will run the special tribunal hearing the cases, I couldn't help but laugh. This is like Christina Aguilera judging Britney Spears performance in public. I'm not a big fan of Chalabi family, but the trials will be fun to watch.

I have no sympathy for Saddam, Chemical Ali or the others. I hope they all go to hell. I wish the trials would be made public. I wish Iraqis could watch them live on TV. That's the least Iraqis could get after 33 years of torture by Saddam and his henchmen.

I watched Van Helsing on Monday. Since then I can't help but wish I could send some vampires to suck the blood from Saddam and his buddies.

I really have no sympathy for these people.

Arabic Word of The Post:

trial  : محاكمة - / moo-'HA-kema /
trials : محاكمات - / moo-'HA-kemAt /

Friday, May 07, 2004

The Third World And America

I often receive e-mails from readers asking me why Arabs hate Americans. I'd like to share one of these e-mails with everyone. I'm sure after reading the e-mail, many of you will say "That's exactly what I've been asking myself". Here's the e-mail:

  • I really don't think Iraqis would ever like Americans, no matter what. No one likes Americans on the planet, but they'd like to come here of course. I work in an office with an Ethiopian, a Turkish woman, a Norwegian, a Philipino, a Mexican, a Dominican and myself am a combination of German, Welsh, Scot-Irish and Cherokee Indian.

    Why are we all here (except my Cherokee grandmother for obvious reasons) in America? We wanted freedom (or our ancestors did) and freedom from religious persecution. As a result, Americans are just crazy about freedom (regular Americans - not corporations), and nothing gets their blood pumping like trying to bring it to someone else. I think we all here felt a tremendous sense of pride that we were doing something good in Iraq. Freeing the Iraqis from that nut-case Sadam Hussain. But we weren't the good guys for long. The America that people see in the movies (ourselves included) doesn't really work that clean or fast. The electricity, water didn't come on right away. It was worse than we thought. There was looting too, and government offices were unusable . All of a sudden a lot of people didn't have jobs, that always gets things heated up. ( I remember Watts in Los Angeles in the 60's). We had only an army and they weren't trained in running towns & villages, and the Iraq police force was gone along with Sadam and had to be recruited. Then the thugs and criminals start terrorizing the Iraqi citizens. Sadam's favored group (Sunni) was understandably pissed off having lost their positions and without much hope for the future. And we didn't help that either. A hot summer with no air conditioning and moods get really bad. Throw in an ambitious religious guy who can use all this to really stir things up and get his career going and voila! The good guys are the bad guys. I feel bad that so many of our sons and daughters (who thought they were doing a noble thing) had to lose their lives. It's not easy being the Satan of the world.

    I asked the woman who sits across from me in the office, why didn't the Iraqi people just start rolling up their sleeves and start fixing things once Sadam was gone. I didn't understand that. And she said " third world, Donna." When you grow up in the third world, in school you are taught not to think for yourselves just to do whatever you need to do to survive, depending on who's in power. It's dangerous to be otherwise. She told me that people here in America are taught to be leaders, and not followers, that's the big difference. I don't know, that's what she told me. She and her husband and children had to escape with their lives from Ethiopia to live in Saudia Arabia for 20 years, then to London (where as immigrants it was almost impossible for them to get a business license), then finally to New York where she can have any business she wants.

    I really want the Iraqis to be free and have good lives. Make good livings, have good educations, take vacations and see the world. From what I remember, Iraq used to be known as a rather cosmopolitan country with very well educated people. I was glad that we got this Sadam out of their lives so they could speak their minds, print their newspapers and have conflicting viewpoints without fear. But we and the world thought (quite rightly), that we made this mess and we had to stay and clean it up. But all of a sudden this week we've become occupiers. Wonder if we'd be called something else if we'd managed to get it all fixed and everyone jobs sooner? Guess it doesn't matter. Or probably we should have left right away (or at least right after Sadam was caught), You would have figured something out and it would have been your own thing. Doesn't look like our leaders had their planning all together for sure.

    Just don't let these religious guys turn you into something like the Borg (from StarTrek). Oh, there I go ....... that's from a Hollywood movie.

Now that you read Donna's e-mail, how many of you think the way she does? I bet most of my American readers do. So, let's analyze the third world where I was born and raised.

In Iraq and many other countries in the Middle East, we are born to follow a specific path. We don't have many choices. Our life is like shopping from a no-frills supermarket.

There's probably one thing in common between Iraqis and Americans. Our parents choose our name and religion. At least you, as an American, can change your name or religion when you're an adult. You have a choice. We, as Iraqis, must follow other people's choices and stay happy.

Iraqi schools are different than yours. For us, it's not about understanding the subject we're studying. It's about memorizing the book we're studying -- except for math. Not only do we memorize the books, we actually learn LITTLE if ANYTHING by the year's end.

American schools are about choices and discussions. You involve the students with many activities at an early age. You help them think for themselves. You help them become independent thinkers and choosers.

An Iraqi's future depends on his/her scores in 12th grade. If we get sick during the final exams and don't do well, it's our problem. If we can't grasp some subjects because the material doesn't make sense to us, it's still our problem. The parents and the society want us to become doctors or engineers. It doesn't matter what we want. It's what other people want for us.

Americans futures depend on their overall performance during school. At an early age, you decide what you want to be. You work toward this goal at school. Your teachers will help you achieve your goal. BUT, you almost always choose for yourself.

Iraqis finish their under-graduate studies and would have few job options and modern cities as choices. Most of the time, we end up with a job that has nothing to do with our studies. If we want to continue our post-graduate studies, then we better have done very well at college and graduated with honors.

Americans finish their under-graduate studies and have 50 states, with modern cities, and hundreds of companies as potential employers. You don't think twice when moving from one city to another because most of your cities have the same services and life standards.
If you want to have another degree or continue with post-graduate studies, nothing would stop you as long as you have a decent study record.

When an Iraqi guy decides to get married, it's a family matter. Everyone in his family has a say in his marriage and choice of a bride. And due to the financial difficulties which face many newlywed couples, they end up living with the groom's family. But, if the groom is from a rich family, the couple may be lucky enough to have their own apartment or a very small house.

When an American guy meets the woman of his life, then it is his choice. His family would accept his choice. It's not about his family, it's about his choice not other people's decisions.

In Iraq, the work place is NOT about being creative. It's about being at the work place at 8 a.m. sharp. What we do with our time at work depends on how important our job is. It also depends on our willingness to take responsibility. If we take responsibilty, we would have a pile of work to do every day. If not, we could pretend to be working until the end of work day.

In America, the work place is about being creative. It's about how much you're able to think outside the box. And if you don't like your job, you could always look for another job -- maybe less so during the last few years.

In Iraq, social life kills our private life. When I say social life, I mean our family, relatives, friends and neighbors. Most of the time, our decisions depend on what people would think of us. It's not about us, it's about them.

In America, your private life comes first. It doesn't mean you neglect your family or friends. It means there are limits to how much you let them influence your life. Your decisions are not influenced by what people would think of you. Your decisions are influenced by what you think of yourself.

In Iraq, overseas traveling is a fantasy for many people due to financial reasons. And if we have the money to travel, then we're limited to a few countries that accept our passport.

In America, most people have been at least to a country or two. If not, you at least have seen many parts of your beautiful country. And if you have a decent amount of money, your passport would take you to most of the countries on planet earth.

In Iraq and the third world, we have dictators ruling us for many years without being able to criticize them or change them. Saddam was a good example.

In America, you can change governments every four years if you are not satisfied with them. Not only that, you can criticize your government at anytime. You vote for your presidents. You vote for your senators. You vote for your city council. It's always your choice.

Iraqis learn not to make life-changing decisions. Americans are brought up to take risks and adventures.

I hope I answered your question.

Arabic Word of The Post:

school : مدرسه - medresa / med-resa /
schools: مدارس - medaris / meda-ris /

Thursday, May 06, 2004

Love Conquers All

In a week full of unpleasant news, it was nice to watch a love story. Sgt. Sean Blackwell, an American soldier, fell in love with Ehdaa, a young Iraqi doctor. They met in Baghdad last year while Sean was serving in Iraq. They got married, then separated when Sean was shipped back home. Their marriage was put on hold until Ehdaa was able to leave Iraq. She was finally reunited with her husband, who was waiting for her at the Jordanian border. It is a very cute love story.

Their love story gives hope to all of us. Enjoy reading it. The story tells it all.

Arabic Word of The Post:

marriage : زواج - zawaj - / za-waj /
marriages : زواجات - zawajat - / zawa-jat /

Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Ma'rwa's Treatment - Update

Thank you again to everyone who contributed to the Fund For Ma'rwa.

NSCIA, The National Spinal Cord Injury Association, has published an update on Ma'rwa's rehabilitation progress with more details on her situation. The girl is winning the hearts of everyone around her. Her story will be published in the May 10, 2004 issue of the People magazine. Sharon Cohen, an Associated Press reporter, is working on a story to be published in newspapers around the country after her return to Iraq.

Let's all pray for a better future to Ma'rwa Ahteemi.

On a different subject, I'm starting a new routine. I'll choose a word from each post and write its meaning in Arabic. It's the best way to learn a new language. I'm trying to learn Spanish language this way. It works for me.

Arabic Word of The Post:

magazine: مجله - mooje'la - / moo-je-'la /
magazines: مجلات - mooje'lat - / moo-je-'lat /

Sunday, May 02, 2004

Reaction To Detainees Abuse Photos

I couldn't comment on this subject when it hit the news channels a few days ago. I needed to study and take my final exam this weekend. Now, I'm done with my exams. I need to talk about it so I can get it out of my system.

First, the photos were disgusting. No human should be tortured or humilated the way these detainees were treated. I want to smash the face of the smiling "guard" in these photos. I want to see her on the Arabic and American news channels explaining her acts. I would like her to tell everyone how she would feel if she was one of these naked detainees.

Second, I believe in the American justice system. Those who perpetrated these acts will be brought to justice. That's what America is all about. No one is above the law -- even "guards" serving in war zones.

I have a blend of opinions, that I'd like you all to read.

Here's the angry opinion of a former soldier (my dear husband).

Here's Alaa's opinion, voice of wisdom, from Iraq. His opinion is the second post on the provided link.

Here's Mahmood's opinion from Bahrain. An earlier opinion could be found here.

Pat Tillman didn't die for his country so a few "guards" would act the way those weirdo, sick-minded group did act.

I feel better now that I wrote this post.