The Real Iraqis
Two weeks before the US invasion to Iraq in 2003, a US spaceship devastated in the space, what was important for the foreign journalist who were in Baghdad at that time waiting for the outbreak of the war was one of the crew was the Israeli pilot who attacked Iraqi nuclear reactor ”Tamouz” in 1981.
The foreign journalist wanted to go to site of the reactor to talk with the people who live around especially those who have been there for long years and suffered of that attack to see how do you think about the death of the Israeli pilot, were they happy for his death?
It was a big adventure to go there with foreign journalists but we decided to go and see.
Most of the families who were living there were rural, they hardly read and write particularly the old, but as usual they were the best people in welcoming the visitors and served them drink and food.
We sat with one of the families who had sheep and cows and a lot of kids to ask them about how do they feel about the death of the Israeli pilot who was killed in that day, before we start, we saw to kids who had malformation.
I asked the grandfather about the reason, he said the doctors told us that the reason was because the contamination caused by the blowing up of the reactor.
Then, I asked the man, how did he feel about the death of the Israeli pilot who was behind the malformation of his grandsons?
The man looked at me and said” first of all as Moslems we do not feel happy if a person killed or died because all of us would die at the end, if he was guilty God would account him and if he was innocent God would reward him.”
The foreign journalist looked at me and did not believe what was that man was saying because she did not expect him to say such thing about an Israeli assailant.
We decided to see a family who was in that area since the fifties and ask them how do you think about the death of the Israeli pilot?
We went inside the house which was very simple and sat on the ground, I asked the father the same question after he told us about so many health problems suffered by the people there after the attack of the reactor.
The man answer was like that, “ for the Israeli pilot I feel sorry about him.” And before he continued I and the other journalist were really surprised, the man went on to say, “ I feel sorry for him and for the other people who died with him because all of them were scientists and their death is a loss to the entire humanity, these people can not be substitute, they are precious.”
It was a real shock for the foreign journalist and to be honest for me too, but I was so proud of the answer which indicated a big wisdom and real human spirit for people never been in schools or graduated from US and British universities.
Again, we interviewed another family whom the eldest son said “ We hate to feel happy about the death of a human being even if he was Israeli, and I think he was carrying out the orders of his commanders, something I would if I was asked by commanders.”
Two days after the invasion, I went to the collage of Fine Arts to interview one of the professors as they were trying to resume life in Baghdad, the professor was Shiite, he could not control his tears while he was describing the night when dear Baghdad collapse.
He said” Yes, I suffered a lot because of the law payment but this has nothing to do with my love to my country, I have refused many offers to go other Arab states to teach because I would accept to be humiliated by an Iraqi but not by any other person.”
There was a Norwegian journalist who kept telling me that he could not understand why the professor would accept to be humiliated by an Iraqi but not any other human being, I told him you will understand that only if you were Iraqi.
I recalled these interviews dated three years ago with their great meanings while we are living this wave of hatred and sectarian war which maintains everybody, these people were Iraqis who could not be happy for the death of an Israeli pilot, why now, I find Iraqis who are happy with the killing of their Iraqi bothers, who justify the death squads? where did we get these people?
It was a great shame when all the world condemn the scandal of Abu Ghraib and then you would find some Iraqis especially the official to justify that just because the majority of the people who were in Abu Ghraib were Sunni and would compare it to the prisons in time of Saddam.
I found it a great shame when non of the Iraqis at least protested for the killing and raping of innocent Abear an her family, as if they were not Iraqis?
It is really new Iraq by all levels and standards as America and those who call themselves the opposition abroad in time of Saddam, wanted to be.