I have over a hundred articles I need to sieve through before I produce that post…Articles dating from the days of Khomeini, his relation with the Western secret services in particular the French and the CIA, the Iranian-Israeli ties during his reign made most evident during the Iran-Iraq war…so from the days of Khomeini until today. You must agree – that is a tall order.
Then I have another hundred articles by Western “academics” and “analysts” (both from the right and the left) articulating the need for the restoration/resititution of “Shia Rights”. Of course none bothered explain what these “rights” are. As if the Shias are not Muslims. As if the Shias are something apart/outside of Islam. But I suppose the occupation of IRAQ is a good indicator what these “rights” were/are all about.
In Iraq, the Shias had full rights just like any other sect or ethnicity. I still defy anyone to show me otherwise. And none have been able to, until this very day.
But tonight, this is not going to be the central subject of this post. Tonight, are my very personal thoughts on the subject.
I don’t know if you have this habit too, but I keep talking to myself. No, am not crazy, not yet anyways…
And tonight, I will share with you my private thoughts, my conversations with myself…
This is what I talk about to myself daily and don’t think am not objective. I even argue with myself – trying to see both sides of the argument. But in the end, I am always back to square one. And the all prevailing thought remains…and will not change however much I argue with me.
So what follows next is the kind of inner conversations I have.
I will never return to Iraq as long as it is ruled by these turbaned shitheads.
I don’t want to be ruled by sectarian Shias. I don’t want to be ruled by any “Islamic” authority. I don’t want to live in a theocracy Iranian style. I could not care less for the smelly Ayatollahs. They represent NOTHING to me. I don’t believe in sects to start with. I only found out about my own sect only late in life. And I am not even from one sect nor from one religion nor from one ethnicity. I don’t belong to this place anymore.
I have no penchants for cladding myself in thick black curtains. I don’t want to have a “muhram” to travel or move about (a religiously accepted male companion),
I hate beards. I can’t stand theologians and am allergic to organized religion even though am religious myself in my own way.
I detest Al-Maliki, Al-Hakeem, Muqtada Al-Sadr, Sistani and all those lice ridden, smelly feet from Qum. I could not care less what happened 1’500 years ago with the Imams Al-Hussein and Al-Hassan. I find it totally stupid for people to keep lamenting for centuries – it reminds me of the constant whining of the Jews and their Shoa.
I find head slicing, chest beating, and self-flagellating to be a mental sickness for which there must be some form of treatment and cure. I hate all the hypocrisy and superstition that accompany it. I find no glory in self-inflicted pain unless one is a pathological masochist.
I am also not turned on by the sadism of the sectarian Shias of Baghdad. I don’t find their drills exciting, nor do their rape of women, nor their burning them alive. Nor do I find the fact that my cousins can’t return because their names are Omar and Aisha — to be an enticing trait in the “New Iraq.”
I find it tiresome to keep hiding one’s sect or to be forced to change it to please your local militias so you won’t get harassed, beaten, tortured, detained, or insulted…
I don’t find Basra an interesting place to be in either. Having my genitals mutilated, or my breasts chopped off or a couple of bullets in my head are not exactly my idea of a tourist attraction. And besides I don’t want to speak Farsee nor fill application forms in this language. I am an ARAB and will remain an ARAB. To hell with Iran and its mullahs. I am not going to have anything to do with this repugnant lot.
Are you sure you’re talking about Basra? Yes am sure.
God, I can’t believe Basra has become that way. I keep wondering what happened to all the people I knew from there. I wonder about Basra and Baghdad. Don’t remind me what Baghdad is like now.
OK let’s assume I do return, who will give me a job ? All the governmental institutions are run by sectarian Shias. If you’re a Shia you get a job, if you’re not a Shia don’t even consider it. Same applies to educational bodies.
All the females in my family have stopped working. They were either fired or got so harassed, they resigned. All the females in my family are today veiled, forced to veil. They stopped going out, stopped practicing sports, stopped going to the pool, stopped shopping, stopped driving, stopped visiting, stopped partying, stopped playing music, stopped painting…Their lives stopped. They only manage to go to the grocers. Otherwise they are cooped up at home, vegetating in front of the TV if they have electricity that is…I will never be able to live like that. Hell, here I have some freedoms and I consider this lot so backward compared to what Iraq was and to what women in Iraq had…
No, this is not my idea of living my life to the full. This is not my idea of a meaningful contribution to Life and others. Let them have it for themselves. Let them plunder and pillage more. They are all corrupt and I don’t want to be polluted by their corruption. I simply can’t.
No, I will never return as long as these sons of bitches are ruling Iraq. Just entertaining the idea fills me with both – extreme fear and disgust. I will retun to Iraq when they all fuck off back to Iran or Israel… Yes that’s it.
I will only return to Iraq, when the green zone is truly Green again and is no longer a zone. When the whores and the pimps are out, back to England, America or whatever shit hole they came from.
But you love Iraq, you miss home, you miss being there don’t you ?
Hell I do, but maybe I need to accept the fact that I don’t belong there anymore, not for now. I still belong there but not really belong there anymore. These people I don’t recognize anymore. They are not part of me and I am not part of them. Something happened…It’s like a cup of porcelain, once it breaks, it’s very difficult to glue the pieces again.
So you’re no longer an Iraqi ?
Of course I am an Iraqi. But I am not today’s Iraq. There is no Iraq anymore. There is an Iraq in my mind, in my memories, in my heart, but today’s Iraq is not Iraq. It’s the Iranian-American Shiastan of Iraq and the American-Israeli state of Kurdistan.
I don’t care for the Kurds anymore either. I stopped speaking to them, even my old friends and some members of the extended family. I have just stopped addressing them. Their true colors showed with this lethal occupation. I never knew they were so chauvinistic, so vindictive. They no longer exist for me. Am coldly polite with them as if I was greeting a total stranger. I actually feel more warmth towards a total stranger than towards them.
My, you are really bitter aren’t you?
No, I am not bitter. I am very aggrieved. I am very disillusioned. I am very raw, still. You know the feeling when there is a corpse lying on the ground and wild animals come and tear it apart, rip at its flesh…and the corpse is not dead, it looks dead but it’s not, it’s still alive…This is not bitterness. I don’t know what you call it, but not bitterness. It is beyond any word I can find…
So you want Sunnis to rule ?
Not at all. I want true Iraqis who love this country to rule. And I guess deep down I don’t believe there are any true Iraqis left.
They are either dead, in prison or in exile having the same thoughts as I and those who are still there, want to leave and they are too frigthened and too tired from surviving. They have become mute with having experienced so many horrors in such a short span of time. Who wants to return to this agonizing corpse anymore.
You made up your mind ?
Yes I’ve made up my mind. This is too sad for me. Can we continue this conversation some other time- I need to stop thinking about it.
You keep saying that but you never stop…
Yes you’re right, I never stop. But one day I will. I will not need to have such conversations with myself anymore. Let’s change subjects. Let’s talk about something else – away from Iraq. This subject drains me.
OK. What do you feel like talking about?
I don’t know…let me think…
You’re silent again – you have no more subjects to talk about ?
I was just wondering…Who is going to look after all these orphans…
Painting: Iraqi female artist, Betool Fekaiki.