A lot about Iraqis.. a bit about Americans by Hala s.
Please welcome Asterism's new guest blogger, Hala s. I will let her introduce herself in her own words...
Hala s. is my pen-name, will be Asterism's guest hopefully for a short while. My aim is to write something constructive has a meaning and could lead somewhere.
Not sure exactly what the theme is going to be? Iraqi politics? Iraqi hopes? Iraqi miseries? All I know, it has to be Iraqi something.
Finally, I cannot thank Salam Adil enough for allowing me a space in his blog. I am not a writer by nature, and being far from home might not add a lot. It feels bad giving observations from a far, but my only consolation is that I am deeply madly and truly in Love with Iraq.
I will do my best not to bore anyone.
It is worth our while sometimes to look at a huge tragedy from a completely different perspective. By doing this, I am not trying to undermine what really hap pened in Iraq and to Iraqis, rather than finding a solution.
As long as I remember, and since childhood, we lived in fear in a hush hush society, parents lowering their voices when it comes to politics, speaking in English not about naughty matters as we thought , but about people disappearing, others get killed and the rapid declination of once a prosperous country. We lived in a tense atmosphere full of distrust and apprehension towards neighbours, friends and even some family members.
We were all affected somehow. I was 14years old, full of myself, when I noticed that the physics teacher was quite bad and we were not getting anything out of her! A complete waste of time I said. I wrote a petition and made the girls in all sections to sign against her. It did not take long, when I was asked to admit to the head mistress. I went running, so confident and happy, I was somehow sure that our wish was granted "a complete idiot". I sat there outside her room for two hours, of course I was beginning to break a bit, and by the time I went in, I was shaking and sweating. She looked me in the eyes and asked: who are you? What is your father name? Do you realise what you have done? Today you are conspiring against your tutor, tomorrow you will do the same against the government! I will pass it this time, one more move of a kind, and you will find yourself and your family and everyone you associate with in the hands of the intelligence police.
My life has changed since that day, I withdrew to myself gradually and became a passive person. What looked to my family as an adolescent mood swings, and probably a secret love affair was pure fear.
If one feels they are a victim, they will continue to wait and wait for someone or something to lift the hardship off. Unfortunately this never happens.
The reason I am saying all this is that we Iraqis carry a lot of the blame on what happened and will happen.
The ultimate solution for many at the moment is the American withdrawal!
I say we have an enemy within; we have to face and kick out. We need to stop feeling victimized even if it is true.
The people who say that we ordinary Iraqis of different sects were living in harmony before the invasion are lying and they know it.
How dare they say that?
We were living in fear and hypocrisy, every single one of us.
I sometimes suspect that those qualities are in our genes after all we've been through.
What is happening now is more or less a replica of before if not worse.
The only difference is we can talk about it and criticise it, so we all have to stress at this point and use it constructively, not just whinge.
When I go back home, I still see people don't give a damn to what happens one meter outside their houses just like before out of fear and ignorance. They don't care about a city that offers nothing but took it all!
Iraqis say I and my brother against our cousin, but I and my cousin against a stranger! As much as I hate this proverb, and prefer unity towards rightness, it looks like it is the only solution we have.