March 20, 2008

Under the former "Dictatorship."


I will let you in on a secret that other Iraqi bloggers consumed with false pride and desperately attempting to save face will not dare admit to you publicly...

Namely, that they all secretly long for the Iraq under the former “Dictatorship”...

Five years on, and you can read it in between their lines...a slip of the tongue here, an allusion there, a sigh stiffled and quickly hid somewhere...

But as you have grown accustomed to by now, I shall not make you read between the lines, I will give it to you out loud, and you need not go searching for hidden meanings with me...

But before I do so, I need to tell you something else but still very related.

For the past 24 hours, I have been doing nothing but perusing websites, news articles, videos, blogs...reading on the “5th Anniversary” of the Invasion and Occupation of my country.

I have to admit that almost all of the pieces I read, ranged from very bad to despicably grotesque...

The Independent with its Cockburn’s gross failures, with its reminiscing Fisk, nostalgic for the days of Churchill, to Pepe Escobar who has embraced Iranian Shi’ism, to the nauseating piece by Jim Lobe from antiwar.com, to Al Jazeerah English website with its lukewarm to frankly disgusting analysis and commentary...
I perused them all...

They were all singing the same refrain that I have gotten so used to by now -- under the former “Dictatorship” and the adjectives would follow – repressive, tyrannical, oppressive...etcetera....

Of course the intelligent reader, and as always, am assuming that you are, will understand that when a writer juxtaposes verbal images of the before and after in one and the same paragraph, what he/she is telling you is -- it was bad then and it is bad now...maybe a little worse but still, it was bad then...

The reader is left with an unconscious message -- maybe, if the occupation was not so botched up, it would have turned to be a good thing after all--It did get rid of the former “Dictatorship.”

But the enlightened reader will understand that the violence that Iraq has experienced starting with the American occupation, and degenerating into a “civil war” was nothing but a spit of fire in your collective faces...

It is really telling you, over and over -- Your democracy has failed and the former "Dictatorship” has won. Think about it deeply before you blurt out more of your nonsense and lies...

A friend whose opinions I greatly respect, told me “There are good dictatorships and bad democracies...” And Iraq was a good dictatorship and yours is a very bad democracy.

For starters, under the former dictatorship, we were alive, now we are all dead corpses...

Under the former dictatorship and during and in spite of 13 years of the most inhumane sanctions ;

We had no ghettoes, we did not know each other’s sect, we intermarried, we had mixed neighborhoods, we could go out without being riddled with bullets from an Iranian militia or from one of your army patrols, we had no checkpoints, we had no car bombs, we had no Al-Qaeda psychopaths, we had no sectarian Shia sadists in turbans and black uniforms, we did not have to dress like a ninja, we were not raped, we did not have acid thrown into our faces, we were free to worship in a church or a mosque, we had jobs, we had homes, our children were fed, our hospitals functioned despite your tyrannical sanctions (today 90% of Iraqi hospitals are in dire need of qualified staff) our roads were not destroyed, our bridges assured safe passages, we did not have women and children begging and sleeping in the streets, we did not have refugees (4.5 million) stranded at borders or rotting away in tents, we had electricity and water and we did not find worms floating in it either...

Our rivers were not dumping grounds for cadavers and our parks were not turned into cemeteries. Our children were not sold or trafficked. Our academics, (over 450 killed) doctors (500 murdered) and professionals (in the hundreds) did not flee or get killed. Our universities still managed to produce graduates and our schools were not attacked by mortar bombs. Our women could drive, work, marry and divorce as they pleased...

Under the former dictatorship our trees were still producing fruits and not razed to the ground. Under the former dictatorship music was still allowed, so were films. Under the former dictatorship we had no drugs,no poppy fields, no drug addicts and no drugs peddlers and traffickers. Under the former dictatorship we had no pedophile rings, no professional killers, no professional drillers and no professional rapists...

Under the former dictatorship, we had no over 100’000 detainees with no trial, no children sodomized in prisons and no women gang raped in exchange for freeing their loved ones...

Under the former dictatorship, our artists, poets, writers, singers, journalists (233 killed since 2003) were not abducted, kidnapped or assassinated...

Under the former dictatorship, we were not rejects. We still earned the respect of others. Under the former dictatorship we had no mass corruption, no public thieves, no fraud...

Under the former dictatorship we had no Israelis, no Iranians and no Americans...And sell out, treacherous Iraqis with foreign political agendas, were silenced, for the greater good.

Under the former dictatorship we had no 2 million widows, 5 million orphans, 4 million wounded, an X number of disappeared, we had no mass graves of a million plus murdered by Democracy.

Under the former dictatorship we were not considered the second most corrupt country in the world and the FIRST most dangerous country on earth...

Under the former dictatorship, we had a country called Iraq. Under the former dictatorship we had a Life. Under the former dictatorship, we were Free.


Painting: Iraqi female artist, Sundus Abdel Hadi - The Battle for Sumer, 2004.