Forthcoming

"Freeing yourself was one thing; claiming ownership of that freed self was another." author Toni Morrison (1931- 05.08.2019)

“If I tell the story, I control the version. Because if I tell the story, I can make you laugh, and I would rather have you laugh at me than feel sorry for me”; Nora Ephron, author/comedian

"Make your story count". Michelle Obama

"Social pain is understood through the lens of racial animus". Researcher/author Sean McElwee writing in Salon, 2016

"We are citizens, not subjects. We have the right to criticize government without fear."  Chelsea Manning; activist/whisleblower

“My father was a slave and my people died to build this country, and I’m going to stay right here and have a part of it, just like you, And no fascist minded people, like you, will drive me from it. Is that clear?” Paul Robeson; activist/singer

“We have a system of justice in this country that treats you much better if you're rich and guilty than if you're poor and innocent”. from civil rights attorney Bryan Stevenson

“This Fourth of July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn. To drag a man in fetters into the grand illuminated temple of liberty, and call upon him to join you in joyous anthems, were inhuman mockery and sacrilegious irony. Do you mean, citizens, to mock me, by asking me to speak today?” Frederick Douglass, WHAT TO THE SLAVE IS 4TH JULY? 07.05.1852 (full text in blog)

Senator Elizabeth Warren "We're a country that is built on our differences; that is our strength, not our weakness"

 

"We are more alike than we are different"v  Maya Angelou

As a Black writer, I was expected to accept the role of victim. That made it difficult in the beginning to be a writer.      James Baldwin

I often feel that there must have been something that I should’ve done that I didn’t do. But I can’t identify what it is that I didn’t do. That’s the first difficulty. And the second is, what makes you think you’re it?   

         Harry Belafonte, activist and singer at 89

 

It ain't what you don't know that gets you into trouble; It's what you know for sure that just ainst so.

Mark Twain

 

You can't be brave if you've only had wonderful things happen to you.

Mary Tyler Moore

 

 You can’t defend Christianity by being against refugees and other religions

Pope Francis:

 

"I don't have to be what you want me to be". Muhammad Ali

"The Secret of Living Well and Longer: eat half, walk double, laugh triple, and love without measure"  attributed to Tibetan sources

Recent audio posts include interviews with Rumi interpreter Shahram Shiva, London-based author Aamer Hussein, South African Muslim scholar, professor Farid Esack, and Iraqi journalist Nermeen Al-Mufti's brief account of Kirkuk City history. Your comments on our blogs are always welcome.

 

Border Crossing Amman-Iraq ”Detained Again !! from Mohammed, Last of Iraqis Feb 12/08

2008-02-18

by Barbara Nimri Aziz

"Detained Again !!" testimony from just one Iraqi leaving his nation, only to be returned - Mohammed, Last of Iraqis.

I'm writing this in Jordan, Amman, queen Alia airport, it's 8:15 am now and it has been 18 hours since we arrived and still waiting to get back to the great Iraq….I'm still waiting to get back to my country and my home after being rejected by Jordanian intelligence for no reason at all; when he interviewed us he asked us why do you want to get to Jordan? I showed him our invitation to UK and my wife's British birth certificate and told him that I want to travel to UK and my wife wants to issue a British passport from Amman, he asked me where would you stay in Jordan?

I showed him the deed of my father's flat in Amman, then he wrote something and asked me why didn't they let you in last time you came to Amman? I told him I don't know, they haven't told me anything. He asked me again then why do you insist on getting to Amman? I smiled and told him" I told you I want to get to UK and this is possible only through Jordan because the British embassy in Syria doesn't give visas" he told me ok, wait outside ………..it has been 18 hours without food or water...and there is no one to buy anything from…I'm ready to pay 100$ for a sandwich and a bottle or water or at least let us go back home.

They say the Iraqi airplane will arrive at 2 p.m. but from past experience I don't believe that will happen, I believe it will be later than that.

I don't know what to say or feel, I need sleep, I need a sofa or bed, my body is aching from laying on the ground and sitting on the metal chairs, I'm hungry and thirsty….I'm angry, so sad and so so tired, I just want to scream.

I didn't think that I will go throw this experience again…..It's so devastating, it destroys my soul and body, it kills me to see these real, classy and good original Iraqi men and women laying and sleeping on the floor for no mistake they have committed…only because of our original sin …..the sin of being an Iraqi...I remember how these Jordanian pigs used to welcome us before when we were in power…..and when we became weak and in need to get in their country they humiliated us and refused us…I remember how we used to welcome them….I remember how they studied in our universities not only for free but the government was giving them a salary in US dollars when majority of Iraqis haven't seen the dollar or dreamed of holding one…I remember how Iraq used to give them oil for free!! I remember how nice we used to treat them in our universities and in the streets…and I see how they are paying it back to us….things will change and we will be strong and powerful again if god wills….Iraq is great and real Iraqis are greater….it's only the era of idiots controlling a great country and I wish it will be over as soon as possible….it's like someone who doesn't know how to ride a horse and he rides on a mustang, that's how our puppet politicians controls Iraq.

I can't watch this old professor who studied in the USA and worked for many many years in Canada and USA and got back to Iraq to help in building the country he always loved, he got back to Iraq to rebuild it and here he is laying on the floor because he wanted to have a vacation with his daughter and see his other daughter whom he haven't seen since 5 years…

In the airport jail there are three small rooms….one was occupied by men only (men who came without their families) and the two other rooms are for families…we (the detained Iraqis) arranged them like this….In my room there are: a brother and his sister who got a scholarship in an American University and wanted to go to the US…the professor and his daughter…two women who were delegated from the Iraqi government bank (Al-Rafidain Bank)….a Christian girl who wanted to go to the Pharmacy college in Amman because all her family lives there, she was in Baghdad to finish her high school.

In the other families room there are a stewardess in the Iraqi airlines with her two children!! Imagine they didn't let a stewardess that worked on our plane to get to Amman, she was even wearing the uniform!!.....a women with her two children who are students in a primary school in Amman.

In the men's room there are about 13 men, 6 of them are delegated from the ministry of anterior, and one of them is a big merchant and the rest I don't know much about.

It's 9 am now….we are so thirsty ….it has been 19 hours and they didn't brought any water to us…if any one wants to drink water he must drink from the WC tub….the WC was so dirty and I can't believe that anyone can drink from that…we told them we want to buy water and the pig officer replied someone will come soon to take your orders just wait…we will bring you breakfast by the way!!

I told him I don't want your food or water, I don't want anything from you…I want to buy my food and I want to buy my water…you either let me go and buy or send me someone to take my order, he said someone will take your order soon, just wait.

In our room we were chatting all the night we couldn't sleep because it's so hard to sleep in conditions like this…the floor is so dirty and the blankets are dirty too in addition that so many people were using it! People that you don't know how are they or how dirty they are or what disease they have…there is one pillow in each room, it was the treasure at that time…although you can see how clean it is!?

I was talking with that professor who I really admired for the science and experiences he have. He is so educated and classy….I asked him if you were living in the USA and you career was going well why did you get back to Iraq? He said" first of all my mother was crying every time I call her and she was begging me to get back…and when the revolution happened in Iraq and Ahmed Hassan Al Bakir became the president…the Iraqi government asked the scientist to get back to Iraq and help in rebuilding it…they asked each one personally…so I got back and as soon as I got back they asked for me in the governmental palace…as I went there they said thank you so much for being the first to respond to the call of the revolution…….." he stopped and his voice chocked when he said that last sentence…I looked at his face and I noticed his eyes were filled with tears and he was looking so sad, I immediately remembered my father who was in UK and was working there in the 80s and wanted to get back to Iraq. when my mother asked him why he answered her" simply because my country needs me, I must get back to build my country."

…..he stopped talking for about 15 minutes and he changed to another story, the story of his threatening, he said" one of my neighbors have left Iraq and left his home, we live in a neighborhood controlled by AlQaeda and because he is a Shiite he decided to leave his home and head to Jordan before he is threatened, so he left his house and asked me to look after it…one day I saw some people trying to break into his house I went outside and told them stop what are you doing, he said this house is mine now, the prince said so, I laughed and told him are you Muslim?

He said sure, I said don't you know the Quarn verse (to the religious people, don't enter houses that aren't yours unless you ask for permission and greet its owners* this is a translation for the verse it might not be so accurate but I tried to give the meaning*)…and I told him let me talk to your prince…an hour later he came back with someone and he begun yelling and cursing and he hit me then I called the awakening and they resolved the issue…few days later I received a poem written on a paper that says (don't you think we forgot you or will forget you, we will kill you and if not then we must be dead).

I told him then why didn't you leave Iraq? He said I'll never be afraid of such low lives, it's my country and I will never leave it, I left everything for it, and I'm not afraid, when god wants me to die, I'll die no matter what I do.

It's 10:15 am they finally brought a small bottle of water for each one and the breakfast (fried chicken!!) and someone came to take the order I ordered some chocolates, water and pizza (which the only alternative for chicken) I paid the guy and the rest were discussing what they want, and the bastard officer said "leave them, they are acting like young stupid kids, they will never decide" that's when I said enough is enough….I told him "why do you say that…I don't allow you to talk like this about descent Iraqi men, he said can't you see it has been a long time and they haven't decided what they want yet, I told him" can't you see that they don't have Jordanian Dinars! Can't you see that you don't accept Iraqi Dinar! Can't you see that they only have 100$ banknotes!! Can't you see the way they have slept the night! I'd like to see how will you act when you sleep like this…then I turned around and left him.

It's 1:00 pm they asked us to get ready because the plane has arrived, we carried our handbags and waited for the plane which to my surprise came at time. We reached Baghdad and I was feeling some happiness because I'll be able to sleep on a bed, on my bed in my home without humiliation I reached home at 6 pm.

Now when I review my writings I feel so much pain and very very sad , it was a different thing last time when they didn't let me in, I was going for a vacation and this time it was to secure my future and try to make my dreams true, last time when they didn't let me in I immediately went to Syria and I had so much fun that made me forget what happened and it's effects, but now….oh now…I'm so sad, I'm so sad, I even don't have the mood to write a letter, I feel my chest is getting narrower on my heart everyday and my lungs are getting smaller every minute…when I open my bags to put my stuff back I feel the failure with every jeans and shirt I put back…I feel the disappointment every minute, a stupid low life intelligence officer destroyed my future and killed my dreams, a legal dream of having a secure safe future, a dream of becoming a dentist in a place that appreciate science and doctors, not trying to kill each one of them….a dream of trying to have a normal life and live like the rest of the world do….not living as a prisoner in my home…where there is no place I can go without endangering my life…and even at home I'm not sure of my safety…a stupid officer made me sleep on the floor and starve me!! A stupid officer prevented us from seeing our families whom we miss so much…a stupid officer destroyed our dreams….

this is what happened in one day…this is a story for one person…just imagine every day how many stories like this happens…every day…can you imagine? This is a serious issue….I don't know what the Iraqis are made of to stand these crisis? What happens every day in that cursed airport is something so important, where is the media from all of this? It really requires the media attention, the light must be spotted on this issue and I'm ready to help as much as I can to expose the truth. http://last-of-iraqis.blogspot.com/2008/02/detained-again.html

See All Blogs in Our Archive »

comments powered by Disqus


Find Us on Facebook
Find Us on Facebook

Believe in Somthing. Even If It Means Sacrificing Everything

Colin Kaepernick, 2018

Tahrir Diwan

a poem.. a song..
poem "My Wish", poem for South Lebanon, Arabic
Umm Kayed's praise poem for the liberation of South Lebanon, Arabic

See poems and songs list

Flash
poems
poem Qur'an Surat Al-Laila
from 'Approaching the Qur'an' CD, male reciter

See audio list

Book review
Rafia Zakaria's
The Upstairs Wife: An Intimate History of Pakistan
reviewed by BN Aziz.

See review list

Tahrir Team

Tamara Issak
Read about Tamara Issak in the team page.

See Tahrir Team

WBAI Online

Select Links



Fatal error: Call to undefined method stdClass::Close() in /home/content/45/4130645/html/blog2.php on line 140