Friday, March 19, 2010

7 years later, let's not forget

Over and over, Iraqis here tell me that they believe we are "good people", that they know we care because, they say, they remember seeing us in huge numbers in the streets, protesting the war before the March 2003 invasion and during the early years of the occupation. 

For Iraqis, the war is not just a bad memory marked off once a year on a calendar page; it persists, filling every moment of every day as relentlessly and brutally as during those early days of "shock and awe" in 2003. They may escape temporarily into sleep at night but their dreams are broken by the certainty that they will only waken to yet another day of suffering, grief and loss.

If we are to be worthy of Iraqis' generous opinion of us, let's prove that we have not forgotten them and that we still care.  Let's renew our determination to end their suffering under this war and occupation by taking to the streets to make our protest as focused on their plight and as passionately visible as it was in 2003. And, let's reach out to help these weary innocent victims of the nightmare of war survive. 

Let's remember them - not only on this day but every day until that faraway time when Iraq is finally  and fully free from occupation and its resulting violence and human tragedy.

Let's remember them the same way we would hope others would remember us if we were in their shoes. Please.

drawing by my young friend "Hadia": Iraqi blogger and author of IraqiGirl - Diary of a Teenage Girl in Iraq