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Iraqi Expat

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Freedom, Hope and Optimism

There are problems in Iraq, no one can deny that, and the road ahead is long and difficult, but Iraq today is full of hope and optimism, Iraqis are free and no longer afraid, they are marching toward a bright and democratic future and no terrorist will be able to stop them.

Here are some excerpts of what ordinary Iraqis said to the BBC:
Saad, 32, Basra, Sound Engineer
Let me describe our situation before the fall of the previous regime. We were like a sick, weak prisoner under the thumb of a cruel jailer.

Then, suddenly and without warning, the gates of our prison were flung open. We were told: "Come on, you are free!"

[...] Then the moment of salvation came. Perhaps I shouldn't use the phrase "moment of salvation", for to do so implies we were expecting such a moment when in truth we were feeling hopeless.

Noura, 32, Baghdad, Computer Engineer

Iraqis should remember the law now is not as it was under Saddam.

They should remember we have a golden chance of freedom, a wish shared by many other suppressed nations.

Nada, 32, Mosu, Government Worker

We never imagined that the Turkmen community would have a political party representing them in Iraq, but this is happening now. We have our own flag, too, in addition to the Iraqi flag.

This was impossible during Saddam's era. Had we dared to do any of these things then we would have ended up buried in a mass grave.

Kaban, 31, Baghdad, Electrical Engineer

There have been many changes since the fall of Saddam's regime, but the most important change was that we feel free.

Many Iraqis had lived in fear of the regime for years, therefore the first step along the way to democracy and freedom was getting rid of that fear.

This freedom led to breaking the isolation which had engulfed us Iraqis - especially the Iraqi intellectuals - during the Saddam era.

The only thing that worries us is the security situation. However, those who say that security was better in the past are completely wrong.

It is true we did not have suicide car bombings in Saddam's era, but our homes did not feel safe from the intrusion of Saddam's security men, who came in the middle of the night to kidnap, kill or rape.

Walaa, 25, Baghdad, School Teacher

From what I have seen, I can say that the Sunnis in Iraq do not live in isolation from the political and social circles of life, as many people outside Iraq seem to believe.

Nothing has affected our relationships with each other - we face the same problems. This applies to Sunnis or Shia, Christians or Muslims, Arabs or Kurds.

Unfortunately, the refusal by some Sunnis to participate in the elections was the cause of some political isolation.

Imad Mohammed, 25, Baghdad, University Graduate

After the regime change in Iraq, I expected radical changes in Iraqi society. I hoped things would improve.

This is true in some cases. For example, as an Iraqi, I am no longer afraid that the secret security service will arrest me.

I am no longer afraid that I could be tortured, jailed, or killed simply because some officials do not like me.

I am no longer worried about losing my dignity or my life. And I am also getting a higher income, like most Iraqis.

I have bought a new car - which was a dream for me - and all commodities are available in the markets now, in contrast to Saddam's time.

Iraqi want to live in peace after long years of wars. They just want normal lives without violence and sectarianism.

I hope that one day Iraqis will overcome all the difficulties they face. I hope they build a new country for this generation and the coming ones.


Blogger Kat said...

I hope that one day Iraqis will overcome all the difficulties they face. I hope they build a new country for this generation and the coming ones.

This was the best. It is what we all hope for. Excellent way to end the post.

April 12, 2005 6:40 pm  
Blogger Brian H said...

As long as Iraqis remember that those creating the security problems would offer them a choice of Afghanistan under the Taliban, Iran under the mullahs, or Iraq under the Ba'athists, they will be shielded. The trend lines are good in too many ways to ignore, now. Though some anti-liberationists still manage it.

April 12, 2005 7:10 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I pray your freedom continues to grow. Citizens need to work with security forces to turn-in the murdering cowards who bomb and attack those who are rebuilding your country.

April 12, 2005 10:33 pm  

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