Thursday, June 21, 2007

My Iraqi Girlfriend

Raghad Toma - Eleven Year Old Christian Iraqi Refugee
A Face From My Past

While visiting CNN.Com today I came to a complete stop when I saw the photograph of little eleven year old Raghad Toma. I could not get over her resemblance to a girlfriend I had back in College. Little Raghad is just eleven, while my girlfriend was college age, yet the resemblance is haunting.

It was that resemblance between this little Iraqi refugee, and my old flame which led me to read the story. I must admit I often find reading stories of the non-stop slaughter in Iraq too painful to bear. I simply can't force myself to read every story which is available for me to read.

As I delved into the details of little Raghad Toma's plight I discovered the reason behind her strong resemblance to my girlfriend. Raghad is a little Christian girl from the Mosul plains of Iraq. My girlfriend was also a Christian girl from Mosul.

In this part of the world, Christians marry Christians, and Muslims marry Muslims. With such a small population of Christians intermarrying for so many generations a strong physical resemblance is created.

Christian Minority In Iraq Speak The Language Which Jesus Spoke

The small minority of Christians in Iraq were treated properly by Saddam Hussein. Saddam was a master at manipulating the various ethnic groups within Iraq. He knew that the greatly outnumbered Christians would be loyal to him if he protected them.

Most Christians in Iraq live near Mosul, in the Mosul plains. These ancient Christian communities were in fact established by Jews who migrated eastward across the region from Judea. Jewish converts in the region were among the earliest Christians. Two thousand years later less than half a million people speak the ancient language spoken by Jesus Christ.
U.S. Invasion Leads To Persecution Of Christians In Iraq

Since the United States' invasion of Iraq the ancient Christian communities which have existed for thousand's of years have come under attack from Muslim extremist who seek to create an all Muslim state.

It doesn't matter that the Christians were there even before Islam existed. As sectarian violence increases many Christians are fleeing into the bordering Muslim nations which have little sympathy for Christian refugees.

Christian Refugees Treated As Pariah In Muslim Nations

Raghad Toma's family is just one example of a Christian family rounded up into refugee camps, and living on the fringe of survival. The Turks don't want them, and won't let them travel, or seek employment. It's a horrible situation for these victims of sectarian violence. They live in a land which simply wishes they'd disappear.

In the mean time the United States which created this nightmare scenario has dragged its feet on allowing Iraqi refugees to seek safety here.

There is a possibility that the Toma family will be allowed to immigrate to the United States. That would seem only fair since their dire situation is the direct result of U.S. action within the region. The U.S. needs to take immediate action to assist Iraqi refugees as sectarian violence in Iraq spreads into an all out civil war.

The coming civil war in Iraq will result in a bloodbath that makes everything which has happened before it look trivial. Some analyst believe that a million Iraqis will die in the coming sectarian violence.
The U.S. Has The Blood of Innocents On Its Hands

The United States now has a moral responsibility to protect those it has endangered, but will it live up to its moral responsibilities? If the past is any indication of how the U.S. will handle its obligations it seems highly doubtful that it will act in the best interest of the Iraqi people.

Just ask the Kurds, and the Shiites about their experience at the hands of Saddam Husein after the end of the Gulf War when the first President Bush encouraged them to rebel against Saddam's regime. As Saddam's genocidal response began the United States watched, and did nothing.

The U.S. sold those people out in the name of regional stability, and in the name of cheap oil.

We stand naked in front of God, and future generations to be judged for our immoral actions. Any state which acts with such disregard for those it has sacrificed to the alter of greed should suffer, and will ultimately suffer the same fate as all the other nations which placed imperialist dreams ahead of compassion. We will lose what we ultimately sought to protect, our safety, our prosperity, and what pretense we clutch of a lost innocence.
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About The Photos

Both Presented Without Permission From CNN and Not under my copyright - but theirs. I used them here with a heavy heart.

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