Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Hope, Violence and The Iraqi Children

In late 90s, Australian newspapers ran the picture of a woman laying on a street in Cabramatta, a hotbed of drug dealers and shoppers, after she took a high dose of drugs. Her very young son saved her life by calling for help. She told the newspaper the electricity went off at her house a few days before. This prevented her from taking a hot shower or something similar. According to her statement, her depression/stress over losing electricity led her to one of the worst Sydney suburbs to relieve her stress with drugs.

I remember discussing this story with my Iraqi friends in Sydney. We concluded that if Australians or other Westerners are sent to Iraq to live like ordinary Iraqis, they'd commit suicide after a week or two. I always reference this story to show the strength of the Iraqi people who have suffered and still suffer from lack of electricity, water and other utilities Westerners take for granted.

Even with the continuous violence in Iraq, there are people who are trying to bring some normality to children's lives. Iraqi journalist Khalil Jalil reported from Baghdad:

Source: Middle East Online

A dozen pre-teen Iraqi girls in ballerina outfits twirl onto the stage as the audience applauds fiercely for the fragile performers, who are learning, all too well, the age-old axiom that the show must go on.

Two weeks ago, two of the actors in their theatre group, Fuad Radi, 20, and Haidar Jawad, 25, were ruthlessly gunned down by unknown assailants in the ongoing plague of shootings and bombings in Baghdad.

Despite the tragedy, the young dancers, aged nine to 12 from the Happy Family children's theatre group, were determined to press ahead with their play.
The 11-day variety show which ended Tuesday adopted the slogan "The Child Is As Sacred As The Country" in tribute to the spirit of its young actors and dancers who dared to perform despite Iraq's daily bloodshed.


Many people don't know that Iraq had one of the best Music and Ballet schools in the Middle East. Last year, The BBC News featured one of the school's female teachers on their site. Ballet teacher Ghada Monther Salim was determined to train the students amid war, violence and insecurity. I hope she's still alive and working with the students. She's another example of how Iraqi women can rock the world.

UPDATE April 19, 2006 11:06am

My condolences to fellow Iraqi bloggers The ITM brothers for the loss of their brother-in-law by another act of cowardice carried by the criminals running the show in Iraq. May his soul rest in peace. May his memory bring strength to the ITM sister, children and the rest of their family.

Where's the new Iraqi government? When would the Iraqi politicians get their sh*t together and form a new government? Enough of the useless negotiations while the country is bleeding to death.

UPDATE April 19, 2006
MSNBC News Agency reports:

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Separate groups of gunmen entered two primary schools in Baghdad on Wednesday and beheaded two teachers in front of their students, the Ministry of State for National Security said.

"Two terrorist groups beheaded two teachers in front of their students in the Amna and Shaheed Hamdi primary schools in Shaab district in Baghdad," a ministry statement said.

A ministry official said he believed the attacks were aimed at "intimidating pupils and disrupting learning."


The neighbors and local police denied the beheading of the two teachers:

BAGHDAD, Iraq - Local police and neighbors of two Baghdad schools where gunmen had reportedly beheaded teachers in front of their students Wednesday said the slayings never happened, despite an official statement to the contrary.


How could Iraqi children grow up like normal children do? AND, how could some bloggers still call these criminals "resistance fighters" and find all kinds of excuses for their acts? It's one thing to be against this war and another thing to support those cowards.

I once believed some bloggers and commenters who write weird posts are just venting their anger or stress and don't really mean what they say. I lost this belief two days ago after I read that blogger Kevin Ray Underwood raped, killed, and was in the process of eating 10-year-old Jamie Rose Bolin after he wrote about his cannibalism thoughts on his blog.

If you cheer for the killing of Iraqis, Americans, Jews, Muslims, Christians or any other people on your blog or comments, why shouldn't I believe you can join the groups fueling these acts? Why should I believe you have two personalities, one online and another offline? You are what you write.

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