Monday, March 27, 2006

My Bad

What I most like 60 minutes is Andy Rooney; this sarcastic man always cracks me up. I try not to miss the last five minutes of the show, in which Rooney says his comments. Anyway, there was an interview with Willie Brand, who was accused and convicted of assault maiming and manslaughter.
The prisoners in question, who later died in prison, are tow Afghanis, one a taxi driver who was captured outside an American base after in was hit. Brand's commanding officer, Capt. Christopher Beiring, says –and I quote- "they brought death upon themselves as far as I am concerned". Both of these prisoners were kept in isolation, and their arms shackled to the ceiling. "They weren’t in pain" says Capt. Beiring, "they weren’t abused as far as I am concerned, if I was a prisoner, I would think that probably be acceptable". There was another acceptable way of treating prisoners, a knee to the common peroneal nerve in the leg, a very strong strike that the prisoner would collapse in pain and lose muscle control.
Brand says that what he was trained to do, and he was not a violent man. Both of the prisoners were found dead in their cells, hanging from their chains, both autopsy reports were marked "homicide". The army spokesman said they died of natural causes. Capt. Beiring and brand both say that their superior officers knew about this, and it was common knowledge. The RC visited the prison, but they didn’t see anything, or they weren’t able to see anything, mostly because the Americans thought that had no operational reason to know about incidents like those in question, " they didn’t need to know" says Capt. Beiring. A soldier testified that the interrogators were convinced that Dilawar, one of the prisoners who died, was just a taxi driver in the wrong place at the wrong time, but still they continued to interrogate anyway, which eventually lead to his demise. They added that, had he lived, his injuries were so sever, that both of his legs would have been amputated. These soldiers were not acting outside the rules says Brand. When asked if has any sympathy for the tow prisoners, Capt. Beiring said "I sure do. I wish they were born American.
The above was taken from CBS's 60 minutes website.
Now lets try to understand this, this piece clearly states that prisoners were tortured, not just had a piece of cloth put on their heads to scare them as one anonyms person commented when I said that American troops torture people. I don’t want to through all of this again, I know, we know, everybody knows about torture, Abu Gharib, secrest prisons around the globe, holding people against their will, denying prisoners the right on an attorney, or even to inform his family that he had been captured, the right for a fair trial, or any trail for that matter. We all know that, we all heard about it, we all heard people talk about it. I was surprised when I watched that report, but what struck me the most is Capt. Beiring answer when he was asked if he had any compassion to the prisoners, he said "I wish they were born American". What the hell does that mean? Would somebody please tell me what the hell is that suppose to mean? Does it mean that if not American, you are denied any kind of rights? If not American, American can throw in jail, torture you, kill you, and maybe kill your family members, and get away with it? If not America, you are uttermenechen, the Nazi expression for sub-humans? Is that what the rest of the world is for American military? I really wish that I am mistaken, but it sure does seem that I am right. I mean tow people were murdered, and the guy who murdered them was found guilty, but he was sentenced to a rank reduction, that’s it. He should have gotten 16 years, but they only reduced his rank. Would that have happened if the tow men were Americans? I don’t know that answer to that, but wouldn’t you agree with me that I would have been different? This is so infuriating and humiliating to me. That means that if was murdered in prison, I shouldn’t expect anybody to go to jail, I shouldn’t expect anyone to be punished for my death. I may be taking it personal, but seriously, it doesn’t get any more personal than this.
But maybe after all it's my fault; my bad, I am not American after all.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Into my tortured soul

Oh lord it seems like a very long time ago. Chronologically it's only 3 years, but in my mind it feels like 300 years. It feels like too many things have happened during these 3 years, too much more than I can think of, too much more than I can bare. I am losing my mind.
My tears have dried in my eyes, my blood stopped running through my veins, my whole body does not exist in its materialistic form, but it looks like I'm living in some kind of trance, locked in some space that is neither of this world not if the next. I can't define myself as a humane being anymore, nor I fit the general criteria for an animal, a rock may have clearer emotions than me.
I can't distinguish myself from the people around me, I am like a ghost living in world where nobody notices it, this ghost is neither dead, nor dead, the only thing he is capable of doing is to observe the living. Neither capable of participating in normal human beings everyday life, nor can he have peace for his trapped soul.
3 years of total alienation and estrangement from the world of the living, driven into an undesired oblivion is how I live now after the so called liberation. Everyday I see people I don’t recognize, I speak a language strange to my tongue, I eat food not familiar to my stomach, I drink water that doesn’t mix with my blood, I breath air that doesn’t pass through my lungs, everything feel strange.
But that’s nothing compared to being a stranger in your own country, to your own people, being alienated by your won brothers and sisters just because you are different, just because you don’t see what they see, and most importantly because you are who you are. It is so painful to be rejected by someone whom you felt that now you could connect with, now you could share your ideas and dreams freely without being judged. It turns out that I was being judged for who I am, it doesn’t matter what I think, it doesn’t matter what I believe, it doesn’t matter what I say, for them I am who I am, and there is nothing I can do to change that.
It is so to sit and watch while the people who said they were going to change things are going the same mistakes the other person did, to watch them pass judgments on people who their only fault is they follow this religion or that, this sect or that, this ethnicity or that.
It is so hard to see everything you dreamed of, everything you know and familiar with, everything you grew up to believe, everything they taught you, everything was just a lie, and it's just a game, and you are the only loser in this game.
3 years have passed and I'm still here, I'm still at the same spot I was in 3 years ago, I did not reach anything, I did not accomplish anything, I still haven’t adjusted to the situation. I still live 3 years ago, I still remember the new years eve of 2003 and the party me and my friend threw, I still remember my day in college, I still remember my friends as they were 3 years ago, I still remember what we used to do, I still remember how much we used to have, I still remember my father who is not here anymore, I still remember my mother who is neither here not there, I still remember my brother and his smile that I rarely see these days, I still remember my father telling me to go bring his the latest movies on CDs, I still remember watching there movies together is his study, I still remember him telling me to go get him kebab for dinner from his favorite restaurant, I still remember the smell of his cigars, I still remember the sound of him whistling when got him, he always did that, everyday when he walks through the door he whistles to announce his arrival, I sill remember all of that, but all of that is no more, in this world that I'm living in, in this time in which we live in, all of that is no more. Where did it all go? What happened that made it disappear? I don’t know, I honestly don’t know.
3 years of being lost, 3 years of suffering, 3 years of depression, 3 years of me not being me. 3 years have passed and I'm afraid that I'm going to forget all that, I'm afraid that I'm going to forget who I was and wake to see that this person I am now is it, wake up to find that this person is the real me, and all of what happened was just a dream, all of that love was just a fantasy, all of those feelings were no true. I'm afraid that I forget all that.
My eyes are sunken with tears, but they wont just fall down, they wont even give the peace everybody feels after they cry, maybe they are afraid that if they fall, I might fall with them, maybe I might change, maybe suppressing that sorrow inside of me is just a way of keeping me in that time, maybe, I am not sure of anything anymore.
Lord have mercy on your son.
"The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer, my god is my rock in whom I take refugee. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold" Psalms 18:2

Sunday, March 19, 2006

17 March

Couldn’t sleep, turning in my bed, just couldn’t stop thinking, but I still I couldn’t figure it out yet, 4:00 am it is now and still can't sleep. Have you ever had this strong feeling that just keeps you awake all night? It's doesn’t have a name but I bet everybody experienced it at least once. I am so sleepy, but I just can't close my eyes.
I was thinking of what I am , who I am , what would become of me, what path should I take, but along the way I drifted to long forgotten memories, old memories, most of them so far away and distant that I can only see a vague picture. Some are happy and some are depressing, the happy ones make you laugh when you think of them, but at the end, when you realize where you are, when you realize that those happy memories have long passed, when you realize that the time and space that you live in right now has nothing to offer you but memories, you just get depressed. I still don’t understand what happened, how it happened so fast is far beyond my modest intelligence, how did I reach this place is similar to a mathematical equation which I could not solve for a hundred years. It just doesn’t make any sense to me, one day we were good, the next day everything fell apart, the world as I know it is no more.
I can put up with everything, losing my home, my family, my friends, my life, my future, I really can put up with all this, all I need is an apology, all I need is someone to say that he or she made a bad call and screwed up, seriously, that’s all I need to finally have some peace. 3 years since the war started and no one has apologized yet, no one took the blame for what happened in Iraq, no explained to me what really happened and whose responsible, not a single person. Mr. Moses …. I'm sorry, I mean Mr. Bush, acknowledged that is not going well in Iraq, but he blamed the insurgents and the Iraqi government for it, I don’t know who told him that, the guy who writes his speeches, or maybe god, since he directly speaks to him. I wonder is he has one of these red phones to call the lord to receive instructions. If I say that god speaks to me, if I say that I hear voices, they will send me to a nut house faster than light speed, but this guy got elected for tow terms as president of the world's only super power…. Crazy world.
But if god truly speaks to the president, then I guess Mr. Bush is not telling him the right stuff, which leads the lord to make some bad decisions. I think he told the lord that Iraqis are so happy with the Americans, and these road side bombs are just fireworks, he tells him that America can't pull out the troops, so they say these people were killed in order to bring them back home, and that coffins are just camouflage. Maybe he tells him they found loads on WMDs in Iraq that they had to give some to charity because they don’t have enough ships to load them on. Maybe he tells him that when they found Saddam Hussein in that hole, they found in his wallet pictures of him and Bin Laden playing golf. Maybe he tells him that those 150.000 dead Iraqi people are not really dead, but they are alive and well, and they were taken to Miami to enjoy the beach. Maybe he tells him that they were only joking with these prisoners in Abu Gharib, and these torture marks are just make-up for a horror movie they were planning to shoot there. I'm just guessing here, whatever it is that he tells god, I'm sure that it's the wrong thing
It's doesn’t matter if he speaks to the lord or not, he can speak to roger rabbit for all I care, I still need my apology, I'm still waiting to hear someone say "hey, we are sorry for your loss", but come to think of it, no American president has ever apologized to his people, let alone other people. But I'll keep waiting, I’ll sit here in my room, in front of my TV and wait for some to say I'm sorry, maybe then I can go one with my life, maybe then this pause which lasted for 3 years now will come to an end. I know I can't my 3 years back, I know I can't turn back time, I know the dead will not come back to life, I know what done can not be undone, I know all that, I know a simple word can't set things straight, but oh god it would make me feel good, it going to put an end to this struggle in my mind, it's going to answer this painful question "am I dreaming?". I still need an apology for this stupid war, I still need someone to apologize for what happened to my country, maybe them I can move on.
Maybe them I can rest.
God be with all of us.
17 March 2006

Thursday, March 09, 2006


I had all of this figured out last night. I knew exactly what I was going to write when I was lying in bed, but I forgot all about it when I woke up this morning. I should write notes when I'm in bed from now on.
Somebody sent me a comment saying that I lack perspective, and my blog is not worth reading. I plea guilty on both chargers, and I have evidence. Very few people read what I write, and even fewer like it, except for my friend whom I think are only encouraging me, and they don’t want to tell me the hard truth. As for the first charge, the lack of perspective… I don’t deny that at all. But it doesn't really mater if have perspective or not, does it? I am not a world leader, I don’t have people's lives in my hands, I am not a famous figure, people don’t look up to me and believe what I say, I haven’t written any books, a lot of people don’t even know that I exist in this world, it is not significant whether I have perspective or not, and most importantly, in real life measures, I am not significant also. I do this for me, to spell out the feelings that I have been suppressing inside for a long time, what I think is for me only, many people do not share the same vision with me, and maybe some do, that is what freedom of thought is all about, talking with the other, accepting the other, but not necessarily accepting or believing what he thinks is true. What really pissed me off was what this person said about me being emotional. Do I have a reason to be emotional? Well… let's see…. My country was invaded by a foreign army, my house was destroyed, I lost all my memories from my childhood, my family is torn, some here and some there, the future is not so bright and beautiful both for me and for my country, I am not in contact with my friends, I don’t see the people I want to see, I do things that I do want to do, I live in place that I don’t want to live in, I want to pursue my higher studies but I have no money, my country men do not want me because I have different ideas and because my religion is different, I see my people killing each other everyday, I see the invaders killing my people and playing divide and conquer on them, I see them killing and torturing my people in a much more horrible way than the man they said killed and tortured many, I see the people who came with the invader, claiming that they are patriots, but doing nothing to prove it, I see the world watching my and my country's misery, doing nothing to stop it,….. What else? Do you want more? I think that’s enough grounds for being emotional. I think if you don’t get emotional after all this, then you are not humane. But hey… life is unfair.

But let me give you more reasons to be emotional. Many people see my as a terrorist, just for the simple fact that I am an Arab. How about this…. what if I told you that from 29/9/2000 to 28/2/2006 the Palestinians killed 3430 non-combatant Israeli civilians and the Israelis killed 684 non-combatant Palestinian civilians, this is a 5 to 1 ratio. You would most probably say that they are terrorists. But what I told you that it was the Israelis who killed more Palestinians, and these numbers are reversed, that the Israelis killed 5 times more non combatant civilians that the Arabs ( by the way these are not my number, they are taken from the Israeli center for human rights, and the UN) you know what the united states would say? It would say that they were defending themselves against the Arab terrorists. Here some more numbers, this time in the right order, 679 Palestinian child under the age of 15 were killed during the same time period mentioned above, while 118 Israeli child were killed during the same time period, that’s 6 to 1 ration. But we are the terrorists. But hey, life is unfair.
Another reason to be emotional, what would u say if I told that Saddam Hussien used to torture people to death, lock them in unidentified locations, execute them without trail, bury them in mass graves, and do not inform their families about their situation. You would definitely say "come on man, this guy is the devil". Well, maybe he is, anybody would call a man like a devil. But the world calls another who does the same things, only on a much larger scale, the leader of the free world, the president of the United States, George W. Bush. This man orders people to be tortured, wants to make torture legal (even Saddam didn't think of that) saying that terrorist do not deserve to be treated humanely, has killed more than 150,000 (one hundred and fifty thousands Iraqis) and counting, has lied to the American people (which is against the law by the way), is listing to your phones and scrutinize your email and search engine, is responsible for the death of more than 2000 Americans. In spite of all that, some people think of him as a hero, and many even elected him president for a second term. But hey, life is unfair.
You want some more reasons? I can't file a law suite against the united states for all the hard it had done to me or my country, nor can you, nor can my country, nor can anybody. You know why? Because the United States did not recognize the international criminal court. If they were innocent, what are they so afraid of? But they put Milosevic on trial in that court. Hey, life is unfair.
As I said earlier, I had all this figured out, I knew what I wanted to say last night when I was lying in bed, but when I woke up it was all gone. I wanted to say a lot more, I wanted to give you more reasons, but I'm just too tired to remember, too sick to of this too talk, to emotional to think. I really wanted to say more, but hey, life is unfair.