Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Live Conversation From Iraq: A Real Disaster!

Today I was chatting with my journalist friend who is living in Iraq for a while. Two years ago she wrote a book about Iraq, Cafe Bagdad. I interviewed her once about her observations there. Since then it seems, the situation has become much worse. When I talked to her today, she was very sad because one of her students - she trains journalists in Iraq - was killed in Baghdad during the raid of a mosque....

Omid: Hi Susanne. How are you
Susanne: not good
Omid: why not good?
Susanne: because one of our students was killed in Baghdad!
Omid: Really? It is so sad! How old was he or she?
Susanne: 28, recently married, and his wife is pregnant
Omid: it is really so sad…He was Sunni or Shiite? Who killed him?
Susanne: he was Shiite; he was killed in this raid on a Shiite mosque
Omid: no!!!
Susanne: it is not sure whether it was American or Iraqi soldiers
Omid: It is so sad to be killed at somewhere which is traditionally safest place
Susanne: there are no safe places in Iraq
Omid: even where you live?
Susanne: I guess here it is still ok. But horrible things happen everywhere. In Kirkuk they arrested a doctor who then admitted that he had killed at least 35 policemen. He killed them when they were brought to his hospital after being injured by a bomb etc, and he would give them a lethal injection or reopen their wounds or turn of the breathing machine, and terrorists paid him for this.
Omid: no, I can not believe, it is horrible. Terrorist means Shiite or Sunnis?
Susanne: people are kidnapped in Baghdad in broad daylight…both sides
Susanne: the doctor was paid by Sunnis. Ansar Al Sunna
Omid: do you think it is because of Iranians interference?
Susanne: part of it yes.But no one really knows who is behind that. The Shiite militias are horrible. They killed 540 Sunnis since Feb. 22. People are kidnapped, tortured and then put in the garbage. with holes drilled in their head and faces
Omid: they are related to Moghtada Sadr?
Susanne: some of them are, others to Badr, part of them are in the interior ministry…
Omid: I have heard about that.
Susanne: at least that is what people say and newspapers write
Omid: do you think the insurgency in Iraq can be solving by Iran- US negotiation?
Susanne: no
Omid: why?
Susanne: it is completely beyond control
Omid: so that's just political show?
Susanne: no, I think it is civil war already. It is the result of decades of brutal tyranny
Omid: so what?

Susanne: people do not know mercy,
omid: If Iran can control the Shiites so it would control the situation?
Susanne: part of it maybebut not totally. They can make it worse. But I don’t think they can completely stop it
Omid: How they can make it worse?
Susanne: not after Samarra and after this event at the mosque, everybody is armed now and scared, no one trusts anybody.
Omid: so what is the solution, I think all of them must gather and think about it. The results just destroy every side and nothing will remain at the end…do you think the Shiite and Sunnis clerics can solve the problem?
Susanne: there is no easy solution, omid, this is not a case for a simple editorial that says if people do this, this will happen and everything is fine
Susanne: do you think in a country where people do things like I just told you it is enough just to sit down and talk and think about it and everything will be fine?
Omid: I mean you are living there, what they need? Power? Money? land? What?
Omid: no, I think that's like a social collapse, which you mentioned...
Susanne: even when I live here it does not know I have a solution. There might be cases where there is no solution. Maybe they have to go through another war
Omid: with whom?
Susanne: themselves
Omid: what does it mean?
Susanne: ????
Omid: civil war to find out the solution?
Susanne: come on, don’t make me mad
Susanne: Iraq is a disaster, and it will be for many years. Don’t believe in stupid articles or politicians who claim if we do this and this or this and this, everything will be solved
Omid: ok. Sorry.
Susanne: they should have thought about it BEFORE they came here. If you unleash hell, don’t be surprised when it gets hot…
Omid: that’s why people, in Iran, are afraid of any similar case. If Americans attack Iran the same tragedy will happen here too.
Susanne: yes. At least you do not have Sunni, Shiite and Kurds
Omid: Iran potentially is the same and if they do anything do destabilize Iran it would be huge disaster...We have Kurds, Turks and Arabs in south. Balouch in East and the other social and political crisis inside…
Susanne:I don’t think you have the same potential for civil war as Iraq. But of course it would be a huge mess, too. And the Iranians threatened to make the situation in Iraq worse if US attacks Iran.

Susanne: Look at this:
The New York Times
March 26, 2006
Redirecting Bullets in Baghdad

"...I GOT back to Iraq two weeks ago, having been away more than a year. The first story I covered began with a tip that vigilantes had hanged four suspected terrorists from lamp posts in Sadr City, a Shiite slum. The minute I got to the scene, I realized I was stepping into a new Iraq. Another new Iraq, really; maybe even the third Iraq I have seen since I began reporting here in 2003….”
(Then she sent me the link of
this article)
And she was still sad, that’s a long time I haven’t heard good news from Iraq. When this disaster will stop?

- Posted by Omid

There is no civil war in Iraq and there won't be one either.

This German journalist should have been worried about the Iraqis when they were getting tortured by Saddam not now when they are free and able to choose their own gov't!
Not to see the reality because it does not suit one own's political agenda does not make the reality go away. If Iraq is such a peaceful and prospering place now, why don't you come here and talk to the Iraqis yourself?

The German journalist
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