Today I found a terrific blog written by a 24-year-old Iraqi woman, with the nom d’electronique of River. The link is in my blogroll, Baghdad Burning.
River’s prose is frank, touching and largely apolitical. She gives us a glimpse of life in an occupied country, a view that we here in the States never seem to get. Here’s a sample:
As it is, people fear the Americans will be here for the next twenty years- unless they are bombed and attacked out of the country. Although many Iraqis support armed resistance in theory, I think that the average Iraqi simply wants to see them go back home in one piece- we feel sorry for them and especially sorry for their families at times. There are moments when you forget the personal affronts- the raids, the checkpoints, the fear of bombing, the detentions, etc. and you can see through it all to the actual person behind the weapons and body armor… On the other hand, you never forget that it’s a foreign occupation and will meet with resistance like all foreign occupations.
Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and Rice can all swear that American troops will not pull out of the country no matter how many casualties they sustain, but history has proven otherwise…
River’s home has been raided by militia. Her brother carries a pistol and she a knife when they leave the house. The family drives a beat up old car than no one will try to steal or car-jack. They live in a mixed Shiite-Sunni-Christian neighborhood, and like the NYC neighborhoods of my parents’ youth, people there are neighbors, not enemies. River has no patience for the occupying forces, for Saddam, for the country’s new “leaders,” for the terrorists. She, and her family, are just regular folks trying to get along.
Her earlier posts have been anthologized and published by the Feminist Press. You can get it from Amazon – see the link below. Check it out, and her current posts, too.