Violence in Iraq: A Family’s Story

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family.jpgSince the invasion of Iraq by the imperialist region of the Bush Administration, violence in Iraq has only further crippled the daily lives of Baghdad inhabitants. Stability and security were by far better off under the leadership of Saddam Hussein. Here is an account of one family’s fight for a better life.

 

 

The Anour Family’s Story “I woke up one morning at 6am in early April. I went to get my car started and I found an envelope. The note said: ‘We will cut your throats within 24 hours. Leave this area you Sunni pigs’.

 

I woke my children up immediately. I put them in the car, locked the house and drove to Adhamiya.

I left everything, my house, my work. The good people of Adhamiya took us in and gave us this place to live.

I had lived in Shaab since 1982. My uncle had been there since the 1950s.

We have never seen anything like this, neither when Saddam was in power, nor since he fell.
We have never differentiated between Sunni and Shia.
But after the Samarra incident, they started just going to people’s houses. People we know – people from our neighbourhood – would come with their faces covered, with 10 cars, and kidnap the men.

The next day the body would be found in a dump somewhere.
We have heard those men talking about what they want to do to Sunnis. Things like ‘We’re going to get those Sunnis, chop their heads off, we won’t let them challenge us’.

They took my own neighbours, from right next door. They took all the men they found.
Some of the bodies were found in the dump, some behind the checkpoint.
They say they want to clear the area of Sunni names like Omar and Baker and Sufian. This is nonsense.

Since when do ‘Omar’ and ‘Baker’ no longer deserve to live on this Earth?

Mohammad Jamal, a friend of the family, has also fled the same area:

It has been three months since I’ve left my house. There were six or seven Sunni families living in my neighbourhood. I want to say I hate using these terms, and I hate saying ‘Sunni’ and ‘Shia’.

One night, three months ago, three Nissan pickups with no licence plates pulled up. I saw this with my own eyes.

They arrested some men, I personally knew some of them – Abdel Hakim Abu Amer, a Sunni from Basra; Omar and Baker who are brothers, one is an engineer and the other a teacher, and another two brothers, Mohammad and Haidar. They returned Haidar, but kept Mohammed.

They took them all on Friday night, at 9.45pm. The next day, Saturday, they were on the news, bodies found with their heads cut off.

I saw those commandos in their jeeps, fully armed. My question to them is “what are they doing this for? And what have Iraq and the Iraqi people done to deserve this?’

 

Update: Mr Anour is now living in the Sunni neighbourhood of Adhamiya in a dilapidated house offered by local Sunnis. The area is protected by the Iraqi National Guard.
Interview and pictures by Out There News

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