Bloodsacks.

"For thousands of years we lived together; Muslims and Christians, Shia'ats and Sunnies, in peace and harmony, our history never witnessed this violence, destruction, and free bloodshed like we saw during the occupation years that has passed upon us. Even in the days of Saddam Hussein, we never witnessed such fear for our lives and families, and the Iraqi society was never ripped apart like what happened now…"Faiza Al-Arji, afamilyinbaghdad.blogspot.com

I was going to say something just now, but fuck that. Faiza says it all. I am going to post her blog of yesterday in its entirety. I know it's long, and you have an egg to boil, and an Arctic Monkeys MP3 to download, and a celebrity mud wrestling match to watch, but, serious, read this thing. It says it all, basically, everything I was thinking about. We should all be ashamed of ourselves.

Thursday, March 02, 2006 Sunday, February 26th, 2006

Good evening…

The last few days were very harsh for the Iraqis, after the bombing of the Imamain Shrine in Sama'ara, then the raids on mosques in many cities of Iraq, so the whole thing would look like a sign for the beginning of civil war in Iraq…

All the Iraqis I talked to in Baghdad or Amman were angry, saying- we are innocent of these actions, and whoever committed them wanted to start a civil war by force in Iraq, but "he" will lose, without doubt, for the Iraqis are not willing to have any kind of war- civil or sectarian…

I follow up the news from Iraq, through the Iraqi satellite channels, the meetings with the people there, and with various religious, political, and social leaderships in Iraq, and they all condemn what happened. And through the Mobile phone messages between me and my friends in Baghdad, I feel like I live among them, recalling back the ordeal of the war in its first days, in March 2003, when we were in our houses watching the events; the state fell, the occupation forces entered, and mercenaries got in, those who destroyed the museum and stole the antiquities, the national library was burned, with the Historical documents, the Ministries were plundered, then burned afterwards (except the Ministry of Oil), the Universities were plundered, burned, or its libraries were destroyed, as if it was a barbarian onslaught, reminding us of what the Moguls did to our ancestors, when they entered Iraq, centuries ago…. It was also said in history books that Tigris, the great river, turned black, because of the ink from the many books that were torn, then thrown in it…

At that time, we were attacked by Mogul Barbarians, who did not understand the meanings of Civilization, Books, Culture, or Arts. And usually, there is hate from the unenlightened against the civilized. The Mogul invaders expressed that hate by destroying Baghdad, the capital of the Abbasid Caliphate, and the center of the Cultural, Scientific, and Artistic radiation of its time….

And in 2003, Baghdad was subjected to another type of invasion. It was supposed that the new invaders were civilized, who came on to relieve us from a tyrant they themselves helped manufacture. Then, under many pretexts, they steered the armies, the tanks, the missiles, and the unconventional weapons- cluster bombs, depleted Uranium, or white Phosphorous, and threw it all on Iraq; on lands, and people, under the slogan of: Liberating Iraq.

Those who were to die, died, those who were to be wounded, got wounded, the infrastructure of the country was ruined, and the waters, soil, and Iraqi air were poisoned and contaminated, and shall remain so for tens of years to come, for the traces of these heavy elements, the leftovers of war, will remain to pollute the waters and plants, and to cause diseases like Cancer, Kidney failures, Nervous system failures, bone structure ailments, and other types of diseases caused by the existence of malignant elements in the environment, caused by the war's leftovers…

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The "Civilized Country" that invaded us, couldn't prevent the destruction and devastation from being repeated in Iraq. And we all wondered; was it a lack of management from their side, or was it a deliberate act?

On the contrary; we saw that the American administration invested the plundering and ravishment that took place in Iraq and encouraged it, by propagating it, and emphasizing it through their media, to send a message to the world: these are the Iraqi people, they are a bunch of riffraff savages, we shall stay here to teach them civilization, order, and human rights…

And now, almost three years passed with us under the occupation, what did we reap? The same scene is being repeated again…

The Iraqis are in their houses, and some mercenaries are ravaging the country, bombing, burning mosques, and killing randomly, to tell the world that Iraq is on the brink of civil war…

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Going back to my diaries on the first days after Baghdad fell, when I wrote about my confusion, my fear of what is to come, I used to pray to GOD to unite the Iraqis, and not scatter them…

But Iraq today is not the same as it was when the occupation entered… we used to live like one patient family, enduring the sweet and the bitter, as they say; we lived through wars, lost loved ones, drank the goblet of injustice, and endured…

Then, the boycott came, we suffered a lot of life's cruelty, the lack of revenues, and we endured; we used to long for a kilo of white flour, we used to bake bread in our houses. There isn't a family in Iraq that didn't suffer from the cruelty of those days. Our hearts united, because we lived under the same canopy, we consoled each other in harsh conditions. So, we felt like we were one family, gathered by many mutual ties, upon which the generous, sweet, tolerant Iraqi spirit prevailed, and our souls remained optimistic with what tomorrow shall bring…

We aspired to change the political regime in Iraq, by honest, nationalistic Iraqi minds, from inside Iraq, who would plan and scheme to change the regime without heavy casualties; we hoped a new political authority would assume the reins of rule in the country quietly, without violence, revenge, or a settlement of past accounts… We hoped everything should be changed by pure, Iraqi hands, bringing along a new intellectual speech; independent, nationalistic, and mature, in the interior or exterior policy…

But what happened?

It happened that a major force like America interfered in our affairs since Saddam Hussein took over power, and there are some reports of the American Central Intelligence declaring that they helped him to take over the rule in Iraq, then, his clumsy policies went on to realize their demands and special agenda; he started the war on Iran, destroying and weakening the Iraqi economy, killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis in that silly war, then, he bombed the Kurdish villages with chemical weapons, but who supplied him with the chemical weapons? He used that weapon against the Iranian army in battles, with the knowledge of the American government, but then he was their ally, and everything he did was satisfactory, and covered up by them; so, there weren't any scandals in the media, or stories of what he did to the Iraqis. I even read this sentence more than once in different places: the American Central Intelligence used to notify him about every coup attempt the Iraqis plotted against him….

After the Kuwait war in 1991, there was a real chance to overthrow Saddam Hussein by Iraqi hands, but the American government gave him the green light to bomb the mutinous Iraqi cities with artillery and warplanes…

I used to wonder- why?

All the Iraqis used to wonder with me, but I suppose we got the answer now, after all these years; for it turned out that the American government didn't want the change in Iraq to take place by a decision of the people, or according to their will, for then it would bring on a real national government, that would give the priority to the Iraqi's interests, having a strong legitimacy derived from the people, and then no one can threaten that government, as long as the people themselves were satisfied with it…

And so, the war on Iraq came along to overthrow Saddam, put the leaderships that America wants, and to work out plans about Iraq's future according to the American vision, not the Iraqi…

This is the only explanation to the story of why didn't they help the Iraqis in their uprising in 1991.

The passage of time, and the accumulation of events, gave the reasonable explanations…

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And since the arrival of the American governor to Iraq, Premer, he started implementing the program that the American administration wanted to apply in Iraq… the hateful sectarian and ethnic program, as their media started talking about Iraq as: the Sunnie Triangle, the Shia'ats region, and the Kurdish region…

They introduced these terms into our lives for the first time, and all the media started repeating these terms after them, like parrots…

The temporary Governing Council was appointed on sectarian and ethnic bases, by quota system, a matter which evoked the Iraqis amazement, and wondering… Then, came the State Running Law, laid down by Premer, which was all based on sectarian and ethnic footings, inserting the word (Federalism) as a title to divide Iraq into three parts…

All this was happening, and the Iraqi people were away from the deciding position; these decisions concerning their destiny and future, were dictated from above, from up there, in Washington. Some miserable Iraqi leaders were brought in to sit in the "Green Zone", moving in the streets of Baghdad under the protection of the occupation army, and do not represent the ambitions of the Iraqi, nor his vision of events…

Can there be more misery than this??

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Then, came the first elections; the atmosphere was charged with tension, with the attempt to marginalize portions of Iraqi people under silly pretexts. The first election took place, and many Iraqis boycotted it, wondering about its legitimacy… After three months of efforts, a government was formed; the ministries were divided on sectarian bases- this is a Shia'ats ministry, then that means that all, from the Minster, to almost all the employees were Shia'ats, and that is a Kurdish ministry, from the Minster to the employees…

Well then, where shall the engineers, doctors, or lawyers from other sects go? And thus the principal of qualification was dropped when employing people, and the principal of sectarianism came first, to qualify you to enter this place, and that… Since when have we, as Iraqis, thought in this silly way, and evaluated things through this vision? We reverted to dark ages, of which we never heard before, in the history of our fathers, or ancestors…

Some militias started appearing in the streets, this one belonging to this (….) Party, and that one belonging to that (….) Party, while the professional, national Iraqi Army, founded since 1921, was disbanded, its leaders sent to sit home; and some of them were assassinated, some collaborated with the occupation, and others were put in Abu Ghareeb prison…. An agreement to establish Party sectarian Militia was issued, which then were assigned to work in the Interior Ministry, for example, to carry out dirty operations against the Iraqis, all the while being as far as can be from being a national force, or belonging to Iraq…

Violence became the common language on the streets; gangs for killing, looting, and kidnapping, Party Militia that kill and assassinate at will, and the Iraqi citizen is lost, disoriented, wondering: what is to become of us? Where is the country heading to? Who allowed for all this distortion to happen in Iraq?

Aren't these the policies of the occupation forces and the American administration, since they entered Iraq? tearing Iraq into sects and ethnics, then feeling happy and enjoying to spread the news: they are fighting among themselves, the country is on the brink of a civil war, how can our forces leave the country? It can't, so, the occupation forces should stay to prevent the civil war from happening….

The outside world is so far away from us, and they believe what they hear, specially the American people…

While we, inside Iraq, live another story, and the truth of the situation is totally different from what the international news media report…

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Then, came the play of voting for the new constitution; the people said- a constitution dividing the Iraqis and does not unite them, is no good. A constitution whose bases were laid by the American governor, Premer, not by the Iraqis, who gave it the legitimacy?

Then, the second elections took place, a few months ago, the Iraqis were very optimistic about, and almost all Parties participated in it. We said- let this be a new beginning. But the results were somehow forged. A state of anger and frustration spread in the country; someone out there is making fun of us, always pulling us back to the zero point…

The political process is moving in a slow, stupid, hampered way, the American ambassador is a party in the dialogue, stating his conditions for forming the new government, and the crisis isn't solved yet…

And lastly, these explosions in mosques took place, by unknown hands, to add more gloom to the scene in the Iraqi field…

Well then; if the Iraqis were sitting at home, hurting, and condemning what is happening, the leaders of the religious sects, the political Parties, and the Iraqi Social Coalitions, and even Al-Ba'ath Party, Al-Qai'ida, and the Resistance denounced bombing the mosques and killing the innocents in Iraq…

If the majority of people refused the idea of the civil war, and the leaders of the political and religious formations refused the idea of the civil war…

Well then, who wants a civil war in Iraq?

It is evident that the Iraqis are the last who want it, but there is someone who is pushing towards it, from the day Baghdad fell till now, but he didn't succeed…

For whose benefit a civil war in Iraq should happen?

Who is the first beneficiary out of it?

We all wonder…

No doubt, the one who wants Iraq to remain torn and weak, wants the foreign occupation forces to remain in it indefinitely, is the one who wants this war to start…

But the Iraqis do not want it, for they say- we are brothers, we can not fight, all that is happening is made- up, carried on by unknown mercenaries, we pray to GOD to expose them, and let their schemes fail…

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I talked to a lot of our kin and friends in Baghdad, yesterday and today, and they said: Do not fear for us, we organized joint comities in the neighborhoods, by Shia'ats and Sunnies, we cleaned the mosques and performed joint prayers. Every ordeal makes us stronger, fear not for us…

I said: Thank GOD, this is Iraq, and these are the Iraqis I have known all my life. They said: Tell the whole world the truth of what is happening, there is no civil war in Iraq, and will not be. All these are lies, and the dreams of the Iraqi's enemies.

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How can Iraq get out of the dilemma in which America put it?

The answer to this question lies with the Iraqis, and they agree upon it; the answer is to put the bases of a national unity government, without ethnicity, without sectarianism, giving the Iraqis healthy atmospheres for dialogue among them, without the interference of the occupation to support a group or marginalize a group, then, putting a timetable for the withdrawal of the occupation…

For thousands of years we lived together; Muslims and Christians, Shia'ats and Sunnies, in peace and harmony, our history never witnessed this violence, destruction, and free bloodshed like we saw during the occupation years that has passed upon us. Even in the days of Saddam Hussein, we never witnessed such fear for our lives and families, and the Iraqi society was never ripped apart like what happened now…

This ordeal made the Iraqis sterner, their vision clearer, and made them more convinced to choose the path of national unity as an only choice to get out of the deadlock in which the present American administration's policy put them into, and the only intact way to build a new Iraq….

The Iraqis are in agreement on the choice of National Unity, and rebuilding Iraq all over again, on just, right bases. But who will convince the American administration to get out of Iraq, and stop its military and political interferences?

Here lies the problem……..

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Translated by May/Baghdad.

# posted by Faiza Al-Arji @ 4:41 PM