July 31, 2008


But will leave you with "sweet" Dreams... until we meet again.

July 30, 2008

Crucified by "Freedom"

The story am about to tell you is a true one. I have kept the details unchanged, but I did change the names, location and dates to protect the anonymity of the victims.

Ahmad lives in an insalubrious, run down apartment in Syria with his wife and 5 kids. Prior to his forced exile, he lived in a decent neighborhood and in a large home, large enough for his family and his parents.

After the occupation and during the usual nightly American raids, that all Iraqis have experienced, Ahmad's life took a definite turn from which he will never recover.

His house was besieged by a horde of American barbarians, tanks and weapons...They stormed in the middle of the night, made everyone lie on the floor, face down, including his elderly parents, kicked and beat the whole family with their boots, resting them on their heads and necks...

Then they proceeded to storm each room using axes to break down the doors when the doors were not locked to start with. Then they opened the wardrobes, and said they were looking for weapons of mass destruction. They set all the wardrobes on fire.

They moved Ahmad's family to the vicinity of his home and made Ahmad and his family watch as your brave boys blew the house up.

They arrested Ahmad and a few others, blindfolded them and took them to an American camp in Baghdad. During the ride to the detention camp, around 20 soldiers were kicking and butting with their rifles edges, Ahmad and the other detainees.

Once arrived, they placed them in a corner of a dirty cell and started pissing on their wounded bodies while hysterically laughing. Not contenting themselves with that alone, they (the Americans) brought in a basin used to collect shit from their mobile toilets and emptied it on Ahmad and the other detainees heads.

Ahmad and his mates spent several months at this American detention camp. The first few days their interrogation consisted of identifying posters on a wall. The picture was that of Saddam Hussein. Of course Ahmad was able to identify Saddam Hussein's picture. When he and the others answered affirmatively, they were violently beaten up by the Americans because for these Americans luminaries, that was proof that they (the detainees) knew Saddam personally.

After several days the interrogation took another turn. Ahmad believes it was not even a process of getting any information which he did not have. But, according to him, the interrogations were just a form of humiliation to the prisoners and a way for the soldiers to "HAVE FUN." - American fun.

Ahmad recalls that one of the American officers used to sit on his chair with a bottle of whisky next to him and start questions like: " Where do you buy your vegetables from ?" " What is the name of your barber?" Other humiliating questions were - "How many times do you have intercourse with your wife ?" "What positions do you take ?... At times, a male and female soldier would undress and mimic such acts in front of the other soldiers all the while "teasing" the detainees...

Ahmad and other prisoners were then transferred to another camp in the South. Which meant that officially there were under British custody. But the personnel inside the camp included US, Australian as well as British soldiers.

When they arrived at this other camp, the British received Ahmad and the others with the same sort of treatment -- kicking and striking with their riffles butts, just like their fellow Americans did before. Ahmad's head was injured during his first arrest and the wound in his head reopened and started bleeding.

The soldiers tried to stitch it in the prison cell but failed, since they are not trained to do so. So they were forced to transfer him to a military hospital. X rays showed that his skull was fractured and had been fractured for several days by now, from the physical blows. They had to operate on him and he was moved back to the prison camp.

Ahmad recalls that all sorts of humiliation and torture were still being inflicted on the prisoners of this camp. He said that when they wanted to take any one to the interrogation session, they'd strip him from all his clothes and put a hood on his head and make him walk naked the whole distance, around 3 km, in front of the other prisoners while the accompanying soldiers would be using their vehicles.

The interrogation still consisted of questions like - "where do you buy your vegetables from and where do you get a haircut?" All the while, with insults and all kinds of beatings being showered on the detainee.

These interrogation sessions were done in the presence of the highest ranking prison officers. Ahmad is completely convinced that these interrogations and torture sessions were done for the sake of "FUN FOR THE SOLDIERS" and not for extracting and gathering security information as the Americans like to pretend.

A whole year elapsed and Ahmad was allowed to receive one visit from some members of his family. His family had spent days and weeks in front of the prisons, begging to see him...

Food in the prison was in itself an insult and a form of torture.

The soldiers would collect the prisoners in one large open space at 8 am for "breakfast". They would make them sit in the heat of the sun till 11 am.
They were forced to take on a "stress position", i.e to sit in a position straining their joints with their hands crossed over their heads so they can have their "breakfast"!

In case any prisoner moved his hand to rest his body a little, the guards would directly shoot him with a rubber bullet right on the face. Some prisoners lost one of their eyes in such incidents. Other developed severe pain and blue faces for months. Those who were unable to stay in the stress position were the elderly, some older than 70 years of age.

That same procedure was repeated between 1 pm and 5 pm - during the "lunch" period The food consisted of a bag of beans with sugar for "breakfast" and a very hot peppered rice for "lunch."

After a year or so, Ahmad and others were transferred to Abu Ghraib prison.

Ahmad recalls that what was unique to this prison were not the notorious sexual insults and torture - something he was quite familiar with and used to by now, but the presence of woman prisoners among them (the men) and the torture these brave women were subjected to in front of them.

One such technique was to tie the woman's legs with two different ropes and pull the naked body in opposite directions. Some died from the pain of this method and others were either split in half or had their hips totally disconnected from their joints.

Another "sport" for the American brave boys, so they can have fun, was to tie
a male prisoner with the noose of a rope to his neck and the other end of the rope was tied to the waist of one soldier. The soldier would run from one end of the cell to the other dragging the suffocating prisoner on the ground and other soldiers -- spectators would time the race.
Then, other soldiers were to do the same thing but in a shorter period. In other words, a race competition/a contest. The prisoner would usually end up with a dark blue face from strangulation and his whole body bruised from being dragged in a "fun" race.

Ahmad was finally released with no charges. He moved to Syria, having lost his home in Baghdad and nowhere to go. About a year after his arrival here, Ahmad started feeling numbness and weakness in one side of his body, something which made speech and swallowing excessively difficult. At first he thought he had a stroke, but when he consulted a specialist, he was told that he had some dead brain cells due to some traumatic accident.

Today, Ahmad drags his legs and is unable to use his arm and hand. Ahmad does not only carry the physical trauma which is there for all to see but the psychological trauma from which he will never heal.

While in Syria, Ahmad met another friend who was an inmate in some Basra camp. This other friend told him that the Americans used to drop hot pepper liquid in the eyes of the prisoners as a form of torture. His friend added that the brave boys did that to him more often than not and today Ahmad's friend is totally BLIND.

Ahmad also met the daughter of a judge, she can't walk anymore, her hips "went loose" after being tortured in Abu Ghraib.

There are more stories, real stories to tell...Stories of "Liberation." Stories weaved by a "civilized" West, the West of " Human Rights and Democracy."

Some bad faithed, dirty, corrupt, hypocrites will argue that this is the work of "a few bad apples."

American and British "ideals" - Yes more like it.

The Western ideals of "Freedom."

P.S: A special thank you to A. for sharing it with me.

Painting : Iraqi artist, Haidar Al-Karagholi, 2007.

July 28, 2008

No Mystique Left...

There are subjects I find ways to avoid or not dwell on for too long...I don't think am a terribly courageous woman for doing so. But then, these subjects are so painful for me that if tackled, leave me totally depleted, enraged like some animal gone wild in a metal cage, or terribly hopeless...

Hopelessness not to be understood as in "I want to kill myself now" kind of hopelessness, but a hopelessness that is best translated as loss of Faith.

Again loss of faith not in a strictly religious/metaphysical sense, but loss of Faith in the broadest of terms...Can be summed up as loss of Faith in humanity, in human kind.

Not to be underestimated at all. Dark stuff is made of a lost humanity. The darkest moments of an Occupation...

These darkest moments can be found everywhere in Iraq. In the smelly rotten prisons. In the torture wounds of the detainees. In the snatched childhoods. Under the rubbles of a bombed home. In the morgue underneath the putrid stench of Death. In the wails at the overfilled cemeteries. In the destroyed ancient statues and a weeping History. In a river that stood still. And in a lone Palm tree thirsty for some water...

But above all, these darkest moments are found in the silence of Women. The women who have been silenced and the women who fear it. The women who witnessed it and the women who dare not break it...

The other day I was zapping from boredom...I hardly ever watch TV and it is only recently that I owned one. A friend wanting to update hers with a "new slimmer version" gave me her old one. So I was zapping away through a thousands channels, wondering would if it ever be possible to watch all the channels, all at once and be done with it? Instead of this monotonous zapping -- only to fall on some idiotic program in Russian, Polish, Chinese, Turkish, Arabic, English, Hindi, Portuguese, Italian, Spanish, German, French, Kurdish, Persian, Hebrew and Assyrian - l'embarras du choix in this vast box of nonsense.

I finally settled to what is familiar. I watched some Lebanese program that invites "controversial" guests and deals with "controversial" topics.
I must admit, the Lebanese are possibly the only ones in the Arab world who dare along these lines...Until Iran decides otherwise.

The subject was no biggie, it was about Al-Moda - Fashion. " Are you a slave of Fashion ?" to be more precise.

The invited "controversial" guest, Mariam Noor, some self proclaimed --esoteric, mystical guru, with a heavy debit of verbiage that borders on lunacy...A mishmash of religion, new age, color therapy, numerology, macrobiotics, and alternative living...and the others -- some eccentric guests who are bent on "affirming their individuality" through liposuction, botox, silicone, plastic surgery, spiky hair, piercing, tattoos, bleached hair, and the heavy metal look with chains, whips and studs... and of course mainstream Al-Moda adepts...

I was about to zap away from this crap, when suddenly, the set switched off the lights and the TV room was immersed in darkness,and some deformed voice from behind a thick veiled screen was asked a question by the presenter. "Tell us X, have you been a victim of Fashion yourself?"

The woman behind the thick veiled screen was an Iraqi. I could tell from her accent.

- Yes, I was a victim of Al-Moda. I was punished for following it.

- Tell us what happened to you ?

- I was walking in the street, heading home, when I noticed several cars encircling me. I was gagged and thrown in one of the cars...
(she stops)

- Then what happened, did they do anything to do ?

X replies -- I was held for several days and one day I found myself unconscious in a hospital. Obviously X was repeatedly gang raped by her kidnappers.

- Who were they and why do you think they did this to you ?

- They were religious extremists dressed in black, and they said they will teach me a lesson for following the Moda.

- What were you wearing on the day of your abduction ?

Of course, the audience, including me were wondering what on earth this poor X was wearing that day. What kind of indecent dress would merit such a punishment.

X hesitantly said with a trembling voice, shaking with guilt - I was wearing a pair of blue jeans and a long sleeved t.shirt. But, she continued, I have always dressed that way before...

- And now how do you dress ?

- I wear long skirts and a veil

- Even though you escaped to Lebanon ?

- Yes even here.

X's severe punishment for wearing a pair of blue jeans and a long sleeved T-shirt merited that she gets gang raped and later found unconscious in some hospital bed, and eventually exiled...

X's story is common. I have heard many of them and worse...

So far, according to official governmental data and we all know that the current puppet government is a master of deceit, confirms that over 20'000 women have been punished and their punishment has resulted in death -- for "immoral" behavior.

"Immoral" behavior in the "new liberated" Iraq consists of wearing a pair of blue jeans and a long sleeved T-shirt, going out unveiled, wearing make up (unless one is a Green Zone hooker, i.e working for the occupation and its proxies), falling pregnant following rape, dishonoring the family through some love affair, suspicion of adultery, accusations of lewdness, mixing and talking with men...Just about anything really. Anything that ticks the men off...

When the stories from Basrah emerged, the stories of over 150 women raped, mutilated, decapitated, tortured and murdered for "immoral" behavior by the sectarian militias waiting for their Mahdi. I wrote to a friend and told her - these are not the true figures. -the true figure is in the thousands. Not counting the Sunni "Nawasib" victims of sectarian rape and torture - because it is HALAL to do so with them. And not counting the thousands of women who are raped and rotting away in prisons with no charges and no trial. And not counting the thousands who are already gone...murdered either by the occupier or its proxies.

The American occupier was the first one to set precedence, in Abu Ghraib, when hundreds of women were repeatedly raped and tortured by your brave boys. And of course the story of Abeer from Mahmoudiah was one of the few ones that was leaked...
I tell you, there are hundreds of other stories that are muffled and covered, blacked out...under thick veils, behind thick screens, caged in metal boxes...

A REMINDER of one of the stories. The story of Nadia released from Abu Ghraib.

I am going to copy it in its entirety and I want you to read it more than once and not gloss over it in a couple of seconds...I want it to sink in into your being and become part of it - a reminder, a symbol of your Occupation.

“I was visiting one of my relatives, and suddenly the American forces attacked the home and started to inspect it. They found some light weapons. So, they arrested all people in the home including me. I tried to explain to the interpreter, who was accompanying the American patrol, that I am just a visitor. However, my trials failed. I cried, begged them, and I lost consciousness from fear when they took me to Abu Ghraib prison. They put me alone in a dark and dirty prison cell. I expected that I will be released soon, especially when the investigation proved that I hadn’t committed a crime.

The first day was so burdensome. The cell was malodorous, humid and dark, and this condition increased the fear inside me more and more. The laughs of the soldier outside the cell made me even more scared. I was afraid of what would happen to me. For the first time I felt that I was in a difficult gridlock and that I had entered an unknown world that I would not get out of.

In the middle of these different feelings, I heard a voice for an American soldier woman who was speaking in an Arabic language. She said to me: “I didn’t imagine that the weapons’ traders in Iraq are women.” When I started to explain to her the circumstances of the situation, she beat me cruelly. I cried and shouted “By Allah! I am oppressed, By Allah! I am oppressed”

The soldier showered me with insults in a way that I have never thought possible or that I would ever be subjected to under any circumstances. Then, she started to deride me saying that she was monitoring me all the day via the satellite, and that they can track their enemies even inside their own bedrooms by American technology.

Then she laughed and said: “I was watching you when you were making love with your husband.” I replied in a confused voice “But I am not married”.

She beat me for more than one an hour and she forced me to drink a glass of water, and I knew later that they put a drug in it. I regained my consciousness after two days to find myself naked. I knew immediately that I have lost something that all the laws in the earth will not be able to return it to me once again. I had been raped. A hysterical fit attacked me and I started to hit my head violently against the walls till more than five American soldiers head by that soldier women entered the cell and started to beat me, and they raped me alternately while they laughing and listening to a loud music.

Day by day the scenario of raping me was repeated. And every day they invent new ways that are crueler than the prior ways.

After about one month, a Negro soldier entered my cell and threw me two pieces of American military clothes. He said in weak Arabic language to wear them. After he put a black bag on my head, he led me to a public toilet where there are pipes for cold and hot water and he asked me to bathe. He then closed the door and left.

I was so exhausted and feeling pain, and despite the tremendous number of the bruises in my body, I poured out some water on my body. Before I finish my bath, the Negro soldier came in. I frightened, and I hit him in the face with the water bowl. His reaction was so tough. He raped me cruelly and spit on my face, then he left and returned with two soldiers who returned me to the cell.

The treatment continued that way, to the extent that sometimes I was raped ten times in a day, the matter which affected my health negatively.

After more than 4 months, a woman soldier woman came, and I concluded from her conversation with other soldiers that her name is Mary. She said to me “now you have a golden opportunity, since an officer who has a high position will visit us today, if you deal with him positively, you would be released, especially because we are sure you are innocent.

I replied, “If you are sure of I am innocent, why you don’t release me?”

She screamed in nervousness, “The only way that guarantees your releasing is to be positive with them.”

She took me to the public toilets, and she supervised my bath while she was holding a thick stick, hitting me by it if I didn’t perform her orders. Then, she gave me makeup, and warned me not to cry and ruin my makeup. Then she took me to an empty small room where there was nothing but a cover on the floor, and after one an hour she came accompanied with four soldiers who was holding cameras. She took off her clothes and she harassed me as if she was a man. The soldiers were laughing and listening to a noisy music, and taking photographs to me in all poses, and they were emphasizing on my face. The woman asked me to smile otherwise she is going to kill me, and she took a gun from one of her colleagues and fired four bullets near my head, and swore that the fifth bullet will be fired in my head.

After that, the four soldiers raped me alternately the matter which made me lose my consciousness. When I regained the consciousness I found myself in the cell and the traces of their teeth, nails and cigarettes are in everywhere in my body.”

After one day Mary came and told me that I was cooperative, and I will be released but after I watch the film that they have shot. I was in pain when I saw the film, and she (Mary) said: “you have been created for the sole purpose for us to enjoy”. At the moment I became very anger and I attacked her although I was afraid of her reaction, and I would kill her except for the interfering of the soldiers. When the soldiers released me she showered me with hitting, then they left me.

After this incident, nobody harassed me for more then one month; I spent that period in the praying and invocation to Allah, the All-Mighty who has all power, to help me.

Mary came with some soldiers who gave me the clothes that I was wearing when they arrested me and took me to an American car. Then they threw me on the highway road after giving me 10,000 Iraqi Dinars.

I went to a home that was near the place where I have been thrown out and since I know the reaction of my family, I preferred to visit one of my relatives to let them know what happened after my absence. I knew that my brother had held a consolation board for me for more than 4 months, and they considered me as a dead person.

I understand the knife of shame is waiting for me. So, I went to Baghdad where I found a good family who lodged me, and I worked with this family as a maid and governess for their children.

Who will quench my thirst? Who will return my virginity? What is the offense of my family and kin? I have inside me a baby, and I don’t know who his father is.”

- End.

Different versions of Nadias, different versions of similar stories.

I have seen them, met them, looked at them, looked into their eyes... They pretend nothing happened, hiding behind a silence, but I can still detect the fear roaming in the corner of their eyes...Occasionally, one would slip bits of a story in between other stories...pretending hers is not as bad. Comforting herself in others miseries...

But anyone with a modicum of perception, of sensitivity, of heart, can tell that something has been irretrievably broken. Beyond, behind, the experience, is loss of Faith in human kind, in humanity.

Let me stop for a while and smoke another cigarette...and gather my feelings, my emotions, scattered around -- like white pearls from a forced, broken, torn Necklace. Like tear drops from a rainy Sky. Like little red balls from a braised Fire...

Art work : Scenes for the Art Video by Iraqi artist Qais Al-Sindy - "Letters don't burn", 2007.

July 26, 2008

A (great) Disappointment & a Question Mark.

I've been asked many a times, through this blog, what are my EXACT thoughts on the Iraqi Resistance.

My standard reply has always been the same unwavering one - Resistance against a foreign Occupation (dual as in the case of Iraq) is the legitimate right of every people.

That means that if tomorrow, the US is invaded and illegally occupied by a foreign power - I will put aside my deep dislike for you lot and will say that the American people have a right to resist any form of illegal occupation. My heart will probably rejoice that you are being made to taste what you inflicted on others, but I will place my principles above my personal/collective story. Right is right.

Of course I will try to find legal loopholes by which the invasion and occupation of your country can be justified...Mind you, I will not need to search far for these legal gaps, since you have proven over and over again, not to be a state of law, positing yourselves above the Law. Clearly, the same is applicable to (not so) Great Britain.

Getting back to the Resistance issue.

Not only have I not wavered in my support for the Iraqi Resistance, but I also, throughout my posts, took great pains in asking the reader to differentiate between Al-Qaeda in Iraq, which is nothing but a terror organization funded by the Israeli, American and Iranian secret services, and between the legitimate Resistance.

I also took great pains in differentiating between the so-called resistance of Muqtada Al-Sadr (the idol of Ccckburn, Rosen, Wallerstein, the anti-war clowns and of course pro-Iran Shia revivalist "revolutionaries" (hahaha) to name a few) and that of the true Iraqi Resistance who fought the occupation from Day 1.

I have not ceased to point out that Muqtada Al-Sadr has been involved in the political process under occupation, has upheld the puppet governments under occupation (like that of Al-Jaafari and Al-Maliki), has been personally involved in the lynching of the legitimate President of Iraq - Saddam Hussein, was/is one of the masterminds (alongside the Americans and other Iranian militias like Badr and Dawa) in the MASSIVE ETHNIC CLEANSING OF IRAQ. That his Mahdi army is inculpated in the most hideous of tortures, in gang rapes, in mutilations, in displacement...and in Death. I have repeated over and over that the ministries run by his men are known to be the most sectarian, brutal, criminal hell holes (very much like those of the ministry of Interior totally run by Iran). I said it over and over until I was blue in the face that Muqtada Al-Sadr is a special card used by Iran when necessary, when convenient. I said that this guy besides being a psychopathic murderer is also a political joke -- that his lack of education, depth of analysis, and political mic macs bear no weight in any true Resistance movement. I also said that Hezbollah's support for Muqtada Al-Sadr and his movement renders Hezbollah even more dubious - past its patriotic rhetoric, and de facto points to the true Iranian sectarian nature of any political Shiite movement - Hezbollah included.

And it did not stop there.

It also took me many hours and sleepless nights, to translate whenever I could, to the point of utter physical and mental exhaustion -- interviews and articles by some factions of the Iraqi Resistance, making them available in English. And am no professional translator either.

I also mentioned that the true Iraqi Resistance is made up of many political factions and that it is incumbent on anyone who stands against the Occupation, to support it. I heavily criticized the anti-war buffoons, the Left (hahaha) in general, and the Arab Left (hahaha) in particular, for failing to do so.

I also pointed out that the True Iraqi Resistance was the only one that kept resisting, that it had no support whatsoever from any outside country, (like Muqtada Al-Sadr), and that what it achieved in 5 years, fighting the mightiest power on earth, ALONE -- is nothing but short of a miracle.

On a side note, but still related. I was also asked on numerous occasions to give my exact thoughts on the Resistance wing led by Izzat Al-Durri. And I was specifically asked to give my comments on his last speech which can be read here.

Today I will reply to your questions.

Before doing so, let me reiterate what I've been stating for the past two years. This is not a disclaimer by the way, it is just FACT.

I was never and will never be part of any political group or party. Be it Baath or ANYTHING ELSE. The way I am constituted makes it impossible for me to join any collectivity. Blame it on some faulty psychological wiring, if that pleases you more...

Having said that, I also expressed some admiration for the achievements of the Baath ideology in practice and tried to illustrate this by writing about Iraq's developmental/ infrastructural leap in a short period of time (20 years), its commitment to its people - in matters of education, health, gender rights, culture...its pan-Arab vision and its unconditional support for Arab struggles, with the Palestinian cause as its spearhead.

I have also not hid my admiration for Saddam Hussein whom I still consider a great Leader, a Visionary and a Martyr and Hero. And I reiterate what I have always alluded to in the past - I still believe he was ahead of his times and that the Iraqis did not really deserve him. But then that is not the problem of Saddam Hussein, that is the historical problem of the Iraqis. Ahl Al-Shiqaq wal Nifaq - The people of Division and Hypocrisy - with a few exceptions, of course.

But let me also say, just because I think the majority of Iraqis are that way, that should NOT be translated into stopping the fight or not standing by my people. Remember what I said about Principles above personal likes or dislikes.

Of course, you are wondering by now, with all this lengthy introduction, what point is she trying to make ? Don't worry, it's coming...

My great disappointment was mainly prompted by two things.

1) parts of Izzat Al-Durri speech.


2) the publication of an article on the 1920 Revolutionary Brigade website.

Assuming of course that Izzat Al-Durri is still alive (a thing I have my own reservations about), how can it be possible that the Supreme Commander of Jihad and Liberation, on the one hand says and I quote :

"I tell them all that our homeland is occupied, invaded by the US imperialists and the international Zionism, backed by the Safawi Khomeinism.. They have destroyed our homeland, they murdered our people, they displaced it, scattered it and they continue to destroy, to divide, to murder and to displace in the daylight and in front of the world eyes and ears."

and, on the other hand, states "Our Army is not also al Qaida which allowed you to slaughter its men, and it is neither the Mahdi army which convinced you through its backward style to liquidate it, militarily, with my due respect and my profound love and my pride for everyone who combat you on the soil of Iraq to liberate Iraq."

Izzat al-Durri's main criticism of the Mahdi Army is that it liquidated itself easily. He then says he extends his respect and profound love and pride to everyone who combats...

Is Izzat Al-Durri extending his profound love and respect to one of the murderers of Saddam Hussein by any chance ? Or is he extending his love and respect to one of the main ethnic cleansers of Iraq ? Or maybe he is extending his profound love and admiration for Muqtada Al-Sadr who never failed to repeat that he will liquidate any remaining Baathist on earth, after having (him and the other Iranian militias) liquidated over 130'000 Baathists till this very day.

These are valid questions and not that am expecting a reply from anyone, but I have every right to raise them. Either Al-Durri, who was one of Saddam's trusted aides, has made a 180 political turn and taken up the path of Naqshabandi Sufi Love, or this speech is not written by him but by some who have infiltrated the Baath and the Resistance, and have been co-opted with a clear Iranian, Shiite, sectarian agenda. And yes, the Mahdi army is clearly a sectarian shiite movement -- backed, funded and armed by Iran - to murder Iraqis. Iraqi ex-army officers, Iraqi academics and scientists. Iraqi women, in particular Sunnis. Iraqi gays. Iraqi children. Iraqi men...and Iraqi Baathists.

The other article, published in March 08, on the 1920 RB site - A Resistance site.

An article by Sami Ramadan on the Basra fights. Sami Ramadani is an ad-hoc, vehement, zealous supporter of the chief sectarian Driller of Baghdad and Lyncher of President Saddam Hussein - Muqtada Al-Sadr. Besides, Sami Ramadani has nothing but praise for Iran.

How can the 1920 RB site publish this grotesque bullshit by a man who supports the murderer of the HEAD of the Resistance, Saddam Hussein ?!

How can the 1920 RB site, on the one hand lash out at Muqtada Al-Sadr calling him a charlatan and a murderer -- which he is, and still publish this crap ?

Either, some factions of the Resistance have also been co-opted by Iran, or everyone has gone raving mad and have lost all vision.

We Iraqis, who are anti DUAL occupation, who believe in a secular state, are progressives, are anti-sectarianism, are anti-Iranian Khomeinism...Us Iraqis, who are hanging by a thread, who have nested our precarious hopes and pinned our trust in the hands of the Resistance...NEED to know. It is our right to know!

And until anyone from the above, comes up with clear answers and intelligent justifications (and no justifications can be logical in this instance), I will say to you that Saddam Hussein has sacrificed his life in vain. And maybe I should take up knitting instead...

Painting: the late Iraqi female artist, Layla Al-Attar, murdered by US bombs in 1993.

July 24, 2008

For Your Eyes Only Part II - A Bridge to Nowhere...

This is a sequel to Part I, in case you've missed it. It can be read/watched HERE.

The so-called civilized West, always prides itself on this notion -- "bridges of understanding." I was conned, I believed in the lie too. Until...

Yesterday I met up with Manal. I had not seen her in ages. She told me that her residency permit will not be renewed and she and her family will have to return to Baghdad. No options. Her home which she described in the minutest details, from the kitchen to the bedrooms, is now occupied by armed Shiites. Her brother tried finding a solution through lawyers and governmental offices, to no avail.

"They are armed ya Layla. They took all our furniture, all our belongings, everything we worked for. The fruits of a lifetime's labor..."

Manal has a university degree in architecture, she now works in the black as a junior "hafafa", i.e her job consists of waxing the ladies in a beauty salon, while dreaming of home...

Her family was told that they could rent a small house down the same street where they lived before being occupied. Manal says she will never return and live in the same neighborhood, passing by her own home and not being able to approach and enter its front door. She said "we've been injured enough, we don't need more insults."

There are thousands sharing Manal's predicament. And some are much worse off than her.

What is this silence when it comes to "liberated" Iraqi refugees ? What is this vile silence, o' "honorable civilized" people of "bridges of understanding"!

A 45mn documentary is available for viewing if you pay 1 sterling pound. Typical British. This documentary has been abridged to a 5 mn video scoop, for free, to give you a foretaste of 3 refugee women in Syria. Embedding has been disabled, but you can watch it HERE.

However if you insist on watching our whole misery, then you need to pay 1 sterling pound.

You will notice that one of the women is cooking by candlelight in Syria. She can't afford electricity. What irony! No electricity in Baghdad and no electricity in Amman and Damascus. The other woman can't return because she is married to a Sunni. The third was kidnapped and she is traumatized for life... I leave you to watch it.

Another video, HERE is about IDP's (internally displaced) who sought refuge in a hospital in Fallujah and set up tent there, an abandoned hospital, like everything else in Iraq -abandoned...

And the last video HERE is about an Iraqi family, the woman is a medical doctor, living on the streets of India!

They say : "Ye shall know them by the fruits of their labor"

And by God, we have seen your labor and us, Iraqi refugees (5 million) are its fruits.

Painting: Iraqi artist, Qais Al-Sindy, 2007.

July 23, 2008

A Palm Tree, a Napalm Bomb and a Fallen Leaf...

Blogs just like Life itself, attract all kinds of people...Sane, mad, lost, aware, confused, sick, searching...

I took this title from a commentator who keeps harassing me...but even a harasser can come up with some good stuff...How about that for impartial, unbiased, objectivity ?

Don't you Westerners pride yourselves on being rational beings and o' so fucking objective? Are you not the ones who posited empirical positivism, cartesian minds over matter, thesis and anti-thesis, dialectics, and hypothetical assumptions tested against hard facts ? All and above a "mundane" reality - "theirs".

A "mundane" reality that "we can't measure, assess, calculate, evaluate...unless..."
Indices, figures, diagrams, curves, stats, polls, maths, econometrics, measurements, graphs...Let's see now how "their" reality truly measures up -- you think to yourselves.

Your anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists gather in conferences and publications abound on "them". Is "their" thinking linear ? Lateral ? Cyclical ?
How do "they" view Time ? Is "their" Time extendable, static, malleable...? How do "they" view the Body ? Shunned, exhibited, exposed, hidden ? What conceptions do "they" hold about frontiers between the private and the public ? What are "their" limits? What is "their" edge, "their" breaking point ?

"Culture" - what a lovely word for the liberal masturbators from the politically correct Academia. Twisting, turning and dancing around culture - "their culture".

"We need to be sensitive to their culture." But let us dissect them first...Rats, guinea pigs in our empirical labs of scientific thought.

You have so many ways of approaching the "Other", don't you ? An ecclectic, integrated, multi-disciplinary approach.

This is all so fine -- Am terribly impressed.

Highly cultured, scientifically evolved, educationally sophisticated, linguistically eloquent, intellectually refined, aesthetically sensitive...o' so aware.

Causes - ecology, global warming, alternative living, gender egalitarian, race conscious, gay sensitive, animal rights supporter, vegetarianism and anti-genetically modified soy beans...Recycle, compost, smoke free, macrobiotically inclined, chakra openers, wonderful people...

Different stratum. Academia, the alternative, and the entrepreneur.

The yuppie kiddo or the CEO about to have a heart attack any moment. Dow Jones, NASDAQ, Hedge funds, options, venture capital, securities, returns and profits...management, excellence, motivational speakers, team spirit, sleek and well kept...sniffing coke or high on speed, in between market fluctuations...

Go for the cut. Quantum spirituality and mortgages. Optimal Living -- your Guru says.
Whoever your Guru is. But you need a Guru by whatever name.


Juxtaposing, parallel realities...

End results across the oceans - Napalm bombs, a dying palm tree and millions of fallen leaves...

Painting : Iraqi female arist, Widad Al-Orfali, 2002.

July 18, 2008

Mission Accomplished...for now.

A friend just returned from Baghdad. He said that people stopped asking each other the usual "How are you and how is your family". Greetings start with "Do you have any electricity?"

He also said that neighborhoods have totally been transformed. For instance an up-scale neighborhood like Al-Mansur is now populated with riff raff shroog, in other words sectarian whores who falsify their diplomas and get governmental posts with titles like "doctor" when in fact they have not even completed secondary schooling. Only 2% of the original inhabitants of let's say Al-Mansur remained there. All the others have fled or been killed, leaving in their place the rot of the new Iraq, the new Zionists who go by the name of sectarian Shiites. My friend said he felt like a stranger in his own neighborhood, where he was born and raised.

As I've mentioned before, on more than one occasion, the Shiites revivalists are the most chauvinistic, sectarian, bastards you can come across. Not only have they engaged in the plundering, pillaging of the Iraqi state, but they have also wiped out all Iraqis who stand against their Iranian project for Iraq.

I have also mentioned on numerous occasions, that prisons are full of Sunni Iraqis, both men and women. Rape and Torture are the norm against Sunnis. The mass graves that are being unearthed till this very day are mass graves of Sunnis and the good majority of those who fled to neighboring countries such as Jordan and Syria are Sunnis - Sunni Arabs.

Today the majority of Shiites whatever their geographical location have been co-opted by the Iranian ideology and have placed their loyalties above their country, above their humanity...and their only allegiance is to their twisted, sick and perverted ideology of political Shiism - which when you get to the nitty gritty of it, is nothing but Khomeinism, even though some try to convince you otherwise.

And of course they will play their broken record, very similar to that of the lamenting tribal Jews of how persecuted they have been. A grotesque lie that had no foundation in Iraq.

Always remember that the majority of Shiites abide by the philosophy that the ends justify the means. Or is it the other way round ? Does not matter, the means and the ends are both hideous. An eerie reminiscence of Zionist Jews. Hence the(not so) strange fascination between both tribal groups. Something I will write about in the coming weeks...

I remember a 75 years old Iraqi who was kidnapped, and imprisoned in some sectarian Shiite dungeon, with hundreds of others, tortured in the most hideous of ways, and when he managed to get out alive I remember him saying " Even the Jews would not do this to us." I suppose Israelis treated S.Kuntar, a prisoner of war, much better than the way Sunnis are treated in Shiite ruled Iraqi prisons.

In fact the Sunni population of Baghdad alone, has dwindled down from 43% to less than 20% because of sectarian cleansing, exile and imprisonment. A genocide within a genocide that none of you bastards ever address.

In secular Iraq, we did not know each other's sects. FACT. We intermarried and we, at least Sunnis believed that Shiites were our brothers. But to no avail.

Racism, chauvinism and sectarianism of the fascist kind is ingrained, embedded in Shiite thought. They are like those Jews who consider their sect/religion as a race. Most Americans don't even know that Shiites are supposedly Muslims. They believe that Shiism is a different religion.

An American friend wrote to me recently and said that several years ago he was listening to a radio program in the US and some army guy was saying that the "only legitimate Muslims in Iraq are the Shiites." That was way before the occupation.

The Zionist who rule America are the ones who devised the sectarian and ethnic partition of Iraq. And the only ones who are racist and disloyal enough to carry out this plan to its minutest details were/are the sectarian Shiites of Iraq. Israel and the US understand very well that Shiism as it stands today is their only ally against any form of Arab nationalism. Because the Americans and the Israelis understand very well the depth of a dividing sectarianism ingrained in Shiite ideology. Shiism is a useful ideology for the American Zionist plan. And by correlation, the mother of all chauvinism and sectarianism - Iran as it stands today, is considered - under the table - as a priceless ally in fulfilling the American-Zionist plan. The plan of erasing any form of Arab Identity. Any form of anti-American, anti-Zionist, Arab nationalism.

Hence it comes as no surprise that the hard core Zionist theoreticians of the Iraqi occupation were the strongest advocates of Shiites rights. Another post will be dedicated to this vermin.

And it also comes as no surprise that for the past 5 years, the anti-war movement has been promoting Iran by fabricating stories about an "imminent attack" on it, diverting attention from the real scene of the crime - Iraq.

Iran has played a primordial, crucial role in providing the logistics in terms of militias, government players, arms and funds in the destruction of the Iraqi state and in erasing its Arab identity. It is thanks to Iran and to all of its proxies be it its militias of the Dawa, of Chalabi the crook/spy, or of Hakeem the fascist or Sadr the chief driller that the US was able to invade and occupy Iraq - in the 21st century!

While the Arab sheep, in particular, the so-called leftists of my butt, are jumping from joy to the so-called defeat of Israel at the hands of the Hezb of God - from Iran, they forget to look at the hard facts that I have mentioned above. And they deliberately forget to acknowledge that the US and Iran today, are engaging in OFFICIAL talks be it on the nuclear issue or in establishing diplomatic representations in their respective countries.

What was under the table in Iraq is today up front, public...only the fucked up Arabs, the left and the anti-war clowns refuse to see it.

Add to the above, the peace talks between Syria and Israel, the prisoner swap between Israel and Lebanon and you will get a fuller picture.

And I say to you these "peace talks" in whatever form they may appear, were only made possible by the total DESTRUCTION of the only true ANTI-IMPERIALIST, ANTI-ZIONIST country that remained in the ARAB world - IRAQ under SADDAM HUSSEIN.

All the above would have not been possible without occupying IRAQ and murdering its legitimate president. Only those of you, deceptive ones in TOTAL bad faith will deny that. It is so bloody obvious to anyone with a modicum of a conscience.

I, therefore, don't care much for your divine victories nor for the ignorant, debased, with a limited vision, hungry for more slogans - Arabs.

Eat your slogans, you fucking idiots. My country is gone and that does not seem to bother you. My country is gone and Iran and America/Israel are signing peace deals all over the place and you still drink and eat slogans - fuck you.

May what happened to us happen to all of you. And if need be, all over again. Let Iran and Israel rule you until you tie your own ropes around your necks and choke yourselves with your slogans.

In the context of all the above, the puppet dictatorship -- Iranian/American government that is currently ruling Iraq, is not concerned about the plight of its citizens, nor about the absence of water or electricity, nor about its 5 million refugees, nor about its gross human rights violations...

Instead Maliki, the Dawa pimp from Iran, is distributing bundles of dollars to Shiites only, to gain their love and respect. And he will gain their love and respect. This is how one gains them, it seems. Easily sold and easily bought.

But the most ironic part, is that what is on the Iranian/American dictatorship priority list is a new flag.

Now that they have erased our stars and colors, they have extended a tender, a bid, a contest/competition for artists and designers to come up with a new Iraqi flag.

Since the Iraqis, for the most part are absent or subdued into a sheepish silence, and since Arabs are celebrating divine victories from Qum crowned by peace deals, a friend of mine, an Italian, designed one for the new Iraq. Paola Pisi, editor of Uruknet proudly presents her design.

I think this design should be the new flag for Iraq. But not only Iraq, but also Lebanon, Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Pakistan - wherever Shiites exist. These countries will be facing the Iraqi predicament soon, they might as well adopt the new design now and spare themselves bloodshed, Iraqi style.

So I urge you to present Paola's design to the Iranian-American government of occupied Iraq. She really hopes she will win the competition.

Come to think of it, I think Paola should be given the Iraqi nationality once Iraq is truly liberated. She has shown more insight, devotion, dedication, loyalty, integrity and commitment to the Iraqi and Arab cause than of all those Arab wankers combined.

And I must admit, I also have a non altruistic motive behind nominating Paola, the Italian. I am hoping she will encourage the import of first class Italian shoes in particular high heels to Iraq, as opposed to the cheap Iranian rubber slippers that are saturating Baghdad's markets.

And besides, true Iraqis have wasted all their shoes throwing them in the dirty face of the Iranian and American occupiers, we could do with some good quality stuff for a change, in our new truly liberated Iraq.

And before I forget - Happy 17th of July, the day of our glorious Revolution.
An ARAB revolution against backwardness, sectarianism, injustice and oppression.

Look forward, with great hope to a united, free, and dignified Arab Iraq. True Iraqis will never become the slaves of America, Iran or anyone else. I promise you that.
The mission is accomplished for now only...but not for ever. We will rise again and again and again...I know Her.

Long live Iraq, its true women and men and Long live the Iraqi Resistance.

Painting: Iraqi artist, Haleem Kasim "The Bomb", 2007.
Flag Design : Paola Pisi, Editor of Uruknet.

July 15, 2008


I was not sure what to call this post and where to publish it either. Here or on the Uncensored one. What should I call it ? On Death , Parallel Lives or just Attachment ? And why the Uncensored blog and not here ?

I've been debating fine lines with myself... Not that it really matters to you, but for me they are important. This may stem from my new compulsion - that of finding order or creating order in my life, after all this chaos. A possible, pathetic attempt to categorize, compartmentalize, events and people, so this feeling of total loss of control, becomes less acute...

In the end, it does not really matter. Just as the dead don't request their exact place of burial, these fine lines are irrelevant too.

Some dying people do request their place of burial. What a luxury ! They specify in advance the exact location, the rites and who should be invited to their funeral.

I have often wondered, and I do admit, I can be quite macabre when it comes to parallel lives - what is easiest - Sudden or Protracted ?

Like what is easiest a bullet in the head, a sudden heart attack or some long agony through torture or some disease ?

Don't give me your replies yet. It all depends, really.

For the person who leaves, I suppose sudden is best but am not sure...I sometimes like to think that protracted is more painful but a more lucid way of going.

Sudden seems like instant coffee to me. No real preparation and no flavor.

But then I think again and I suppose, sudden is easiest for the one who departs and hardest for those around him/her. They were given no time to prepare themselves, unlike the protracted one about to leave...

It is all really a question of balance. Who gets what first.

Not that I want to get flippant about Death. But, really at the end of the Day, and this is what Death is all about - the End of a Day - and a long journey ahead or maybe not...

Had theologians, priests, rabbis, sheiks, monks and seers been more clement vis a vis this journey, am sure more of us would welcome it with open arms. I suppose they just projected their own fears and ideologies and most of us followed them like sheep...to Hell.

I must admit, God could have also pro-actively chipped in with more positive affirmations about the whole thing. Instead of this all or nothing proposal. You either dwell in heaven or you rot in the fire...All or nothing. Terrible, really.

What if you were half-half ? Like half an angel and half a demon ? Or what if you were just an ordinary human ? Where would you exactly fit in, in the after life ?

I am still debating if this is a morbid subject or not. I suppose it all depends on how you receive it.

Which brings me to the subject of attachment.

How easily we get attached. We get attached to family, people, places, things, ideas and causes...or anything else...

And when we are meant to leave, our pain and that of those around us, is proportional to our attachment. Except for objects. They don't give a damn if you love them or not...But you do.

The more attached we/they are, the harder it is to let go. The less attached, the easier...

Attachment is often underestimated and misunderstood. On the one hand we need attachment to realize ourselves and on the other, attachment can prove to be our greatest handicap. I agree, it is a mind fuck.

How to strike the balance is a lifetime endeavor. Not that I have done so myself. I keep oscillating...

OK, let's cut the chase here. I have lost two good friends, suddenly. And another, in a protracted fashion - all in the space of 6 months.
For the latter, I was prepared. But totally unprepared for the former(s). Sudden deaths are sudden for both parties. I feel very sad I can't attend his/her funeral. OK am lying. I don't believe he/she is dead. So suddenly...

I don't like the word "suddenly". Elements of surprise don't go well with me. They suddenly throw me back to Attachment.Or the sudden loss of It.

Painting : Iraqi artist, Mohamad Msyir, "The Sun", 2007.

July 14, 2008


Ya'nee what the fuck is happening to the world ? I can't believe my eyes.

The President of Sudan is charged with Genocide in Darfur and Bush and the American scum are let off the hook ?

Over 1 million dead, 3 million maimed for life, 3 million widows, 5 million orphans, 5 million refugees, over 150'000 detainees, homes destroyed, massive ethnic cleansing, unprecedented torture and rape in the history of mankind, summary executions and arrests, billions of dollars stolen, antiquities and oil plundered, an economy in shambles, a 70% unemployement rate, walled ghettoes, use of illegal weapons - DU, napalm, White Phosphorus, Cluster bombs, thousands of tons of bombs, robotic weapons, phyiscal deformities, use of Iranian militias, drills, physical mutilation, desecrating religious sites, pissing on corpses, arresting and imprisoning children, sodomizing kids, raping and burning women alive,insults, humiliation and slurs of Iraqis in their own country, on their own turf...and more...and more --all under an ILLEGAL OCCUPATION, not to mention the dungeon called Guantanamo...

And they are let off the hook ?

The Americans are worse than the Mongol's invasion, worse than the Spanish Inquisition, worse than Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy... And they are let off the hook ? Just like that ???!!!

Fucking hell, how can that be ?

I swear, the world needs a massive, humongous TSUNAMI.

Thank God am not God - I would have wiped ALL of you motherfuckers off the face of this earth. Or come to think of it, it's a great pity am not.

For Your Eyes Only - Part I

Nothing beats living pictures, sight and sound...Nothing beats the Truth you are about to witness. Nothing beats your hideous, heinous, barbaric crimes...

The Video Link below is a must see. It does not allow any embedding, so I am not able to post it here on this blog. But do click on IT HERE.

You will be taken to the other side of the world. To a world of monsters, monsters of your own doing.

The Title ? Iraq Deformities / Fallujah- July 2008. Thanks to YOUR Weapons of Mass of Destruction. Yes, we found the weapons. They were and are still used by YOU in IRAQ.

And I don't want to receive any comments, mails or the like telling me that you could not bring yourself to watch it, because of your extra sensitivity.

We are living it, you bastards. So you watch it NOW. Just as you watched our lives being destroyed...

July 13, 2008

The Mosul Cover-Up.

Again, the same pattern repeats itself every time massive ethnic cleansing takes place in Iraq.

It happened with Iranian maneuvers when Baghdad's Sunni population was being wiped out and a "divine victory" was proclaimed in Lebanon and it is happening again when the Sunni population of Mosul is being wiped out by the sectarian, Iranian, Shiite government and the Zionist Kurds and all attention/focus and news coverage are being directed on Iran's missiles test.

And the continuous crimes go on, unnoticed, unaddressed, while other - cheap, low-life, sold-out bitches are claiming more "divine victories"...

My relative K. has just returned from Mosul. I will not give you details on him, I am adamant about protecting his anonymity. I can tell you though that K. was the most apolitical person you can meet.

K. by virtue of his profession, witnessed many cases of torture victims, he said what he saw in Mosul was nothing compared to what he had seen in the past. In other words for the dumb reader, let me be more explicit - Iraqis are being tortured in Mosul simply because they happen to be Sunnis and Arabs.

He also said the following (in Italics):

- Iranian elements in Mosul are liquidating all the ex-army officers who were involved in the Iran-Iraq war.
Do remember that the Mosul operation is carried out by both the puppet government and the Americans. And follow Logic if you can. So if Iranian elements are liquidating ex-army officers then the Americans have given their green light. And don't come and tell me that Iran and "their poor oh so oppressed, downtrodden Shiites " and the US are not in agreement when it comes to ARAB Iraq. Bunch of bad faithed, fucking idiots that you are. Maybe we will read another exuberant, joyful, song and dance from some Arabs, Palestinians included, claiming another divine intervention in Mosul.

- There are very clear Kurdish plans to annex Mosul and to tie it to the Northern Region of "Kurdistan" also known as little Israel. Ah those "poor, repressed, gassed Kurds" - where are your tears today you deceitful bastards !

- The Regional council of Mosul has only one Sunni on its board and Mosul is majority or was majority Sunni and that the person who really pulls all the strings is his deputy, a Kurd by the name of Goran. The other members of the regional council of Mosul are mostly Shiites. They are not the inhabitants of Mosul but were brought in from other parts of Iraq.

Sectarian Shiites - and 90% of Shiites are sectarian by virtue of their ideology, (just like 90% of Jews are Zionists by virtue of their ideology and am being generous here, read 99%) and the Kurds are one and the same to me - they are the Zionist Jews of the New Iraq.

So the Mosul cover-up is nothing but an extension, a further application, execution, of the theoretical backbone of Iraq's occupation. In sum - destroy and hand over the Arab Iraqi skeleton to the Zionists whether they are Shiites, Kurds or Jews.

K. also mentioned some things about the Iraqi Resistance but will not share them with you...content yourselves with your murderous, shameless and feeble cover-ups.

Painting: Iraqi female artist, Nadwa Al-Qaragholli.

July 11, 2008

In The Deep End...

Upon the recommendation of a friend, I took up swimming again...She said it will expand your lungs and I could do with some extra air.

I actually love swimming, but I regard pools as nests of bacterias, germs, fungus and chlorine...This obviously doesn't help my chronic apprehension of becoming contaminated with one thing or the other...

After all there were/are enough of DU, polluted water, soiled foodstuffs, biological particles from white phosphorus stacked in the Iraqi body, surely I don't need an added germ - albeit of a local flavor...

But I did try to overcome my hypochondriasis and hit the pool for some lung expansion. Slow, even, strokes - my friend suggested, so I did just that - slow, even strokes, in yoga like fashion.

I nearly bumped my head a couple of times on the edge of the pool, having adopted this contemplative Zen approach, but did manage to avert any major accident, thankfully...

After a while, I got frankly bored with the back and forth, and my meditative state quickly degenerated into a whirl of thoughts, memories and a replay of conversations I had recently...

One of these conversations was with a fellow Iraqi, and we were discussing our days in Baghdad, when we would go swimming at the various sports clubs. He said matter of factly - I always remember Iraqi women being in bathing suits and swimming. What on earth happened since ?

- Ask Iran and its sectarian, backward supporters, was my reply.

We had excellent sports clubs in Baghdad. Showing up in bathing suits as opposed to dressing up in a potato bag, was part of the local scene at the pool. I mean this is what one expects to be dressed in by a pool- a bathing suit. Not a chador, Persian style...

As my body was floating, my mind followed suit and engaged in a current of free associations...I kept on pushing the water back, in a resolute manner, and another conversation popped up in my head. One I had not too long ago with a good friend of mine. We were discussing Iran, Hezbollah and Israel. My friend's astute observations came to the surface again, in full force.

The conversation came about when my friend returned from Beirut and remarked that Iranian flags were all over the place. She added by saying that Israel's war on Lebanon in 2006, was nothing but a show of force between Iran and Israel. And Iran provoked it through its proxy arm - Hezbollah.

She said - Both Iran and Israel are expansionist states, their disagreement is not a disagreement on principles - their disagreement is mainly related to Iraq.

- How is that? I probed.

- The US/Israel and Iran have a deal going on/in Iraq. After the occupation, the Americans/Israelis tried to fuck with the Iranians insofar as their deal was concerned, so Iran said to them - You want to fuck with us in Iraq, after all what we've done for you guys, we will show you, our missiles can reach Tel-Aviv from Lebanon, and we will turn Lebanon upside down if you persist in breaching our prearranged deal.

She also cleverly remarked two things

- Do you realize two things since this Israeli war on Lebanon ? One the timing - it was at the height of the sectarian ethnic cleansing in Iraq, where Iran and its sectarian Shia proxies and the US were fully cooperating in murdering Iraqis, in particular the Sunnis. And the second - AFTER this "war" in Lebanon, Iran's role in Iraq came out in the open, it was no longer a secret, hidden, matter, but very much made public. These are no coincidences, she concluded.

Of course, I had to agree with her sharp perceptivity of events, a fresh contrast to the never-ending bull crap I keep reading about the anti-Zionism of Iran and the imminent attack on it. A psy-op which has been going on for 5 years now - taking the focus off the Iraqi scene and diverting attention from the real Crime - to the utter pleasure of the pro-Iran punditry, enhancing their barks to higher pitches in chorus like fashion with Iran's militias, be it Hezbollah, the Jaysh al-Mahdi, the Dawa party, the SCII and the rest of the locusts...

A few more hard strokes and I will be done with this smelly pool - I thought to myself...And as I approached the edge, I heard a couple of Iraqi voices. Two young men, with shaved heads looking like some bulging GI's, imitating the nasal twang, with a "Yeah man". One of the guys had a tattoo on his arm - an American eagle.

I could tell from their accents that they were Shroogs - a Shroogee is someone who combines lack of manners, poor taste and no education. They were Shroogs who adopted the Uncle Sam look during the day and would engage in Husseiniyat - lamenting Kerbala, (something that happened 1'500 years ago) - Qum style, during the evenings.

They were/are the perfect babies of C.Rice's midwifery. A perfect epitome of the New Iraq and the New Middle East. A perfect reflection of the US/Israel - Iran collaborative and occupied Iraq is full of them. I will not be surprised to see similar specimens emerging at some point in Lebanon and elsewhere in the Arab World. Just give it more time...

I was glad to be out of this pool. I grabbed my towel, dried myself, lit a cigarette, inhaled, expanding my lungs even further...and headed to the shower, to diligently wash off all the germs I encountered in this Deep End.

Painting : Iraqi artist, Mohammad Jaafar, "Untitled", 2006.

July 9, 2008

A Siesta...

If there is one thing that should absolutely not be relinquished, it's Siesta time.

Those short afternoon naps are considered a luxury in the West, here they are considered essential coping skills. Coping with the heat, with the overtired minds and it is scientifically proven that they are a great source of regeneration.

Westerners often criticize us for this habit. They believe it is a waste of time. Their whole culture hinges on being available for work, for profit, for more...Yet most of them are hardly available at all.

I remember having to note down in an agenda the date and precise time to meet anyone for a cup of coffee. You are all a very busy people running around like headless chicken, doing nothing.

Yes nothing, because if you really look back on all your years of running around, you will realize you have achieved nothing of substance. You are still empty, hollow and got your minds very tired in the process. You really need to learn how to nap in the afternoons.

Of course, being the very envious, jealous, uncreative people that you are, you even want to take napping away from us. With your globalization and its Weberian ethic of non stop production, which you call innovation and creativity when in fact it is nothing but slavery -you want to turn everyone into your own image - a mental, emotional, sexual and spiritual robot.

Come to think of it, all of your achievements have managed to produce you and your wars and destruction - hardly something worth praising.

So my short Siestas in the afternoon have taken on a symbolic meaning - resisting your way of life. I try to have them as often as I can, when my fucked up neighbors permit, that is. Now that their kids discovered roller blades (another fucked up American invention), I have the sounds of wheels over my head during the day and the high heels of Madame and farts of Monsieur during the night.

Today, there was silence. A golden opportunity for a short vagary, a short trip, a short adventure in another land, where I am a spectator of a film, a film in a dolby sound system and high resolution pixels of colors.

I slept for what felt like hours when in fact it was nothing but a mere 20mn.
And I dreamt...

I dreamt I was in the US, in some skyscraper, right at the top of a very modern building that looked like a phallus penetrating the clouds, the skies, the cosmos...

I have fear of heights, so finding myself on the rooftop, was not my idea of sightseeing the universe from above. Besides I hate your ultra modern architecture. An insult to architecture. Hence I don't understand how can anyone like Zaha Hadeed, the Iraqi female architect who is the darling of the West. She is by the way, originally from Mosul. Mosul was a beautiful ancient city, but not sexy enough to inspire Zaha in her designs...

So I was saying I was on this rooftop, feeling vertiginous...There was a very small cafe that someone had urged me to visit for its artsy fartsy atmosphere...So I did.

The owner was an Arab who has been in exile for 60 years. He had adopted this artsy fartsy look, with his greasy hair held back in a pony tail, his long beard, his washed out Levis jeans and his t-shirt with holes specially fabricated to complete the look.

He made me pay for my coffee and went into a litany of how his 60 years of exile pained him...I don't know why but in the dream, I felt no sympathy towards him, none whatsoever...another fake Arab, an American-Arab, the worst kind - I thought to myself...

Then, a bang on his artsy fartsy door and I see another American-Arab holding a gun.It's a hold up he said, without flinching. As if he was so used to this kind of unwanted visits...

There walked in an Arab looking woman with a grotesque American accent, chewing gum. The pseudo Arab in exile, quickly disappeared into an adjacent room, and left me with this histrionic, dangerous character, sitting face to face.

I said calmly to her - your gun does not scare me, what do you want exactly ?

- Give me your money.

- Open my purse, I have nothing but 5 dollars, you can take them.

- OK then, give me your watch.

- You can take it, it's no designer's watch. It's a Swatch. Why don't we talk instead ?, I suggested.

So this long conversation took place. I can't recall the exact details, but I do recall that not many words were spoken. We seemed to speak with our eyes and she burst out in tears...But I do remember telling her - you are an Arab, not an American, you really don't need to act like a gangster and imitate their ways. You have your own. Re-discover them.

She said something to the effect - I want to steal your souls...And I replied, this is something you will never be able to do.

She did not kill me as she had intended, she left. And the artsy fartsy American Arab walked out from his hiding and told me - Be grateful that you're alive..

I noticed that she stole my watch (Time) and my coat (Cover). So I said to this wanker - I have no coat left, she took my only coat, what will I cover myself with, in this cold ? And he reiterated - Be grateful that you're alive.

I woke up stunned from this dream and tears were flowing down my face. Probably a mixture of having had to live at gun point and having been robbed of my time and my cover/protection...

I immediately went to look for my handbag. Of course it was still there and no thieves had walked in during my Siesta. But that familiar feeling of having been cheated, robbed and abandoned (by Westernized, Americanized Arabs) has stayed with me and will stay with me for a long, long time...

Painting : Iraqi artist, Mohamad Msyir "Attachment", 2007.

July 8, 2008

The Language of Open Wounds...

I've just realized that I will be "celebrating" two years of relentless blogging, soon.

It all started in July 2006, with yet another external "aggression" - Israel/Lebanon.

I was familiar with blogs and even thought of starting my own - way before, but something held me back. I am not sure what it was, maybe the timing was not right. I know I was way too raw, so raw, I felt I had lost my skin...So I just perused other people's blogs and thought to myself -- maybe one day I will start my own.

And interestingly enough, my first posts were not about Iraq. I simply could not get myself to write about Iraq.

You know, it felt like someone who had just lost someone very precious and when you meet that person, he will talk about the weather instead of his loss, or maybe she will talk around the subject or avoid it altogether and pretend nothing...
This usually happens when a person is too raw and simply cannot deal with the event.

This is exactly what happened to me. I simply could not write about Iraq at the very beginning of my blog. I wrote about the Lebanese war instead.

At first, I could not understand my avoidance, then as I slowly opened up to myself and to you - the reader, I realized that I was in a such a survival mode, that these powerful emotions of anger, sadness, grief...were so strong and so intense and they were so much part of me, I simply didn't have the necessary distance to be able to articulate any of it in a coherent form. Again, it was all too raw.

There was also the fear, a kind of persistent fear that if I let any of it out, I will explode...It's a very strange feeling. Survival means keeping a lid on anything that might make you tilt into an abyss of no return. Some call it self control...I call it - too raw.

At some point I was aware that I was playing games with myself and that I must muster the courage to tell it like it is, to myself and to the world.

I could have opted to hide behind current news. Linking to that or the other. Or, giving my "rational" analysis of events...But what happened in Iraq was beyond anything rational and using that rawness to expose it all, was the only way for me.

Many a times, after a post, I would feel so sick, so drained, so empty, so alone, it would take me days to recuperate...And recuperate is not a good word, because one cannot recuperate anything insofar as Iraq is concerned.

And beneath the fury, the injury, the outrage, the loss, remained/remains the terrible realization that Iraq is gone forever...changed forever...

I tried to convey to the best of my ability the extent of the destruction wrought on my country. On many occasions I felt words eluded me. I felt words were limited, constricted, flat, lifeless...At times I wished I could invent a new vocabulary, a new language...

At first I thought that language was a barrier. I thought maybe my use of the English language was not up to standard. I thought maybe my grammar and spelling lacked some essentials...I simply could not understand how can anyone not see, feel, understand the extent of the injustice done, the depth and repercussions of the damage, of the destruction...

Then, I understood that Language was not the barrier, but that minds were. Numb minds adding insult to injury. This is also when I realized and understood what an ignorant, arrogant, worthless people most of you are and this is when I decided to let the volcano roar in your faces, spit its fire...Whether you comprehended, approved of it...or not, it did not matter anymore. One does not take permission to resist.

It did not matter how many of us were killed, maimed, made orphans, made widows, made destitute, exiled...your minds were/are the greatest barrier.

Not only your government, your army, your society, your media, but your minds...

Your minds are the most rotten, corrupt, things I have ever encountered in over 40 years of existence. And that includes many of you -- be it left or right. In particular the left, the despicable Arab left to be added to the bloody lot.

I took off my satin gloves. The upbringing, the education, the injunctions, that taught me to "be fair, be nice, be kind..." were no longer applicable. They actually became a hindrance.

Here I was/am dealing with monsters who have lost their humanity eons ago, I, indeed, had to learn a new language - Yours.

The biggest challenge was/is to speak your language and not lose mine. The biggest challenge is to speak yours and still remain me...

But that will not be a formidable hurdle. As long as Iraq is occupied, I will learn all the languages, accents and dialects that need to be learned...

What have I got to lose, now that I lost it all ?

What have I got to lose, now that nothing remains but rawness...the rawness of open wounds.

Painting : Iraqi artist, Himat Ali, 2003.

July 6, 2008

A Present...

I did apologize for not remembering your day of "Independence". Now, I really want to extend to you my warmest wishes on that "honorable" occasion. Please accept this humble present from me to you .

A special message to an Italian Friend - Don't lose hope. Silence is not absence.
And to JM, the American, who supports me 100% and unconditionally.

Youtube video: Directed by Farismn, 2 June 2008.

July 5, 2008

Cracked Nuts...

I was at the grocer's yesterday...hate shopping but my fridge was kind of totally empty...I know I need to lose a few pounds, but starvation is not on the menu. So I really forced myself to walk to the grocery store, a 20 mn walk from where am at.

I resented the fact that am not allowed to drive here, resented the fumes from the car exhaust pipes filling my lungs with lead, resented the lack of pavements, resented the holes and craters in the streets, resented the fact that I have to debate for 30 mn or so what is appropriate or not appropriate dress code...

Knowing the tight frontiers, almost everything is not appropriate short of stuffing your head in a veil...but then it takes courage to dare and affirm some identity. So it takes creativity to play around and work your way with these frontiers, imposed frontiers...

Anyways, so I finally made it outside the door filled with resentment and apprehension. Fear of falling into another hole, choking from the fumes, harassed for playing with frontiers...or simply bombarded with horns from car drivers, small blasts that overtake you by surprise and leave you in a startled state wondering where did the bomb go off...Then you remind yourself, it's nothing but a car horn.

I decided I was not going to let myself be sucked in by the negativity, I was going to make it a thoroughly enjoyable experience. So I programmed myself to see the positive everywhere...OK, it was not coming but I kept at it, until I reached the grocery store.

Let it be a sensual experience, I said to myself. I walked into the over cooled small shop, felt like walking into an Alaskan breeze. Was freezing.

What happened to the old fashioned fans ? You know the ones that hang from the ceiling. Why is everyone so much into AC's ? I hate those fucking AC's. I like fans. I remember lying in bed and watching it going round and round taking me into a hypnotized trance. I loved the swirling of fans from the ceilings.
Movement -- moving the air, moving the energy, instead of that stale AC that just blows cold air, indiscriminately... Mass cold air from the North.

So I was saying -- I was about to transform it into a sensual experience and I did.

It is the small pleasures of life that are important. So this is what you need to do when you walk into a grocery store (not supermarkets).

You close your eyes and get into a olfactory mode first. It takes a couple of seconds. Then you blink again and get into a visual mode. The colors become brighter. Then you blink again and program yourself to get into an auditive mode. This exercise is called tuning in your senses. In other words -- shake that numbness off your shoulders.

And it works. The olives looked bigger and greener. The cheese smelled as if the goat, cow, sheep was around the corner. The almonds looked beautiful and you could contemplate their shapes for hours. And look at those walnuts. Perfectly made. And the smell of thyme mixed with sesame seeds, embraced me and took me to those lovely hills, where the sunset takes on a perfect gold color, just like the olive oil in those bottles in front of me. Shining, pure undiluted gold.

Told the young man behind the counter -- I want it All.

- All?

- Yes All and smiled. Of course I could not tell him I wanted the hills, the sunset, and the almond, walnut and olive trees...

He smiled back - a rare occurrence here. He probably thought I was on drugs or something. You can have it All if you can afford it was his reply.

- OK then let me taste a bit of All. So he offered me a few olives, a bit of feta cheese, a few almonds and walnuts. I had to taste what I was going to buy first.

Delicious. The programming worked. The green olives transported me to the hills, and the thick olive oil and lime in which they soaked gave them this little bitter edge, just a reminder of beauty always being tinged with a little bitterness.

The cheese was just right. Not too salty and its pure untainted whiteness reminded me of the buffalo cream I had back home. It looked like snow, a thick snow covering the grounds and hiding the ugliness of its washed out grayish brown.

Now came the turn for the almonds. I love almonds, both green and dried. They too have this slight bitter taste tinged to them. A reminder again.

Now came the walnuts. Two kinds were exposed. Local and American made. The local walnuts looked smaller, a bit out of shape, a darker brown...

The American walnuts looked big, a much lighter brown, well built, well shaped, they looked more appetizing...

At that point, my auditive mode highly tuned, heard an accent I recognize all so well. Here comes a tall, handsome man, with an Iraqi accent from Mosul. He was buying something for his daughter. I did not look, I just saw him from the corner of my eyes...It was enough. An air of anonymous familiarity suddenly pervaded me. And an inner smile shone through, a homesickness slightly abated...

- Let me taste those walnuts, I said

- Which ones the American or the local ?

- Let me taste the American ones first -- as if I needed to.

He handed me this half walnut that looked big, well built, in good shape and put it in the palm of my hand. I picked it up, looked at it one more time and took it slowly to my lips. Sniffed it first a little and put it in my mouth.

Damn, Damn! It has this old stale, molded, rotten taste. That took me out of my sensual mode right back to reality.

- What the hell is that? This tastes rotten despite the appearances. Disgusting!

At that point, the man from Iraq said in a very loud voice in his strong Moslawee accent and he did take me by surprise.

Is there anything American that is not rotten ? Anything at all ? Everything American is rotten.

I felt of surge of hopeful beauty rising up in me again, tinged with the bitter sadness in his voice...The inner smile I had initially felt inside of me, moved up and lit my face like the golden colored olive oil trapped in the bottles in front of me.

I turned to him and said "You said it. Thank you for making my day"

I then asked the young man to let me taste the local walnuts. He placed several in the palm of my hands, treating them with nonchalance. They were cheaper than the American ones. He could afford to dispose of them more generously...

I looked at them nesting in my hand - small, dark brown and out of shape compared to the ones made in America. I took one to my mouth and the taste -- a wonderful velvety taste, fresh, smelling of the earth, no staleness to them, no mold, no rot...and this small, out of shape nut managed to over ride and dispel the taste of the bigger rotten nut, the American one.

I will take local anytime, I said to the young man - to his utter displeasure.

I paid for the olives, the cheese, the almonds and the local walnuts and walked out into the warm evening breeze, into the car fumes, the holes in the streets, the car horns, across the tight frontiers and borders...back home.

P.S: Sorry, forgot to wish you a Happy Independence Day - Yesterday...

Art Work: Ceramics by Iraqi artist, Waleed.R.Al Quaisi --"Untitled Form"

July 3, 2008

Arab Logic...

I have been (very) unable to blog...Today is the first day I am back to my "wits"...
Am sure some of you are terribly annoyed that am still around while others are probably relieved...The first group -- I didn't miss you at all. The second group --you've been in my thoughts...Good thoughts.

Now that am done with the preliminaries, let me get to the real important matters.

Today, my thoughts have been dominated by one single idea -- WE NEED ANOTHER SADDAM HUSSEIN NOW!

I was in a cab and as usual, the bored/curious/snoopy driver was trying to suss me out.

I don't know why but his conversation took on immediately a political twist. OK, maybe I do know why...

Life is getting very, very expensive, here and most people can't make ends meet anymore. In particular the Iraqis...

So this is how the conversation started -- with the ever increasing price of cab rides, to fuel, to food...to everything. So the driver said to me "It's all because of the war in Iraq..." So, of course, I responded "you mean because of the Americans ?"

So he replied - Some people understand only force...

Me - How is that related to the price of your cab fare ?

Him - Look at Hezbollah for instance, now Israel has to deal with them, they only understand force...

Obviously, his thoughts were all over the place...So I felt the need to straighten them out...

Me - You mean the exchange of prisoners ?

Him - Yes of course, plus so many other things...

Me - Like what ?

Him - Look at Iran, a few days ago their president threatened Amrikkka.

Me - Hmmm...He threatens Amrikkka, but Amrikkka handed Iraq on a silver, gold, diamong platter to Iran and to the most sectarian Shias that have existed since the Safavid Empire...

Him - That's my point. The Americans and Israelis only respect the strong.

Me - But Hassan Nasrallah and Ahmadinejad are still alive and kicking and Saddam Hussein was murdered by both Amrikkka and Iran.

Him - He was the only true Arab. And since the Arabs murdered him, then I am very happy for Iran and Hezbollah to take over.

Me - feeling my patience running out...You don't get it. Am telling you Amrikkka and Iran murdered Saddam Hussein, the only true Arab leader that was around and who refused to compromise...

Him - getting irritated. But it is the Arabs who sold him out, then they deserve to be ruled by Iran now

Me - And am telling you that Iran is collaborating with the Zionists and the Americans as in Iraq

Him - Never mind, Saddam was the strongest, he is dead now, we need another strong entity to stand up to Amrikkka...

The above is a brief specimen of current Arab "Logic". The warped logic of a defeated people. One defeat after another and now they are pinning their hopes on their worst enemy -- The chauvinists, sectarian, racist Iranians who have wrecked my country alongside the Americans.

Hence, the idea that has dominated my thoughts throughout this cab drive -- WE NEED ANOTHER SADDAM HUSSEIN NOW! Time is running out...

Painting : Iraqi artist, Muhammad Muhraddin, 2007